The Magnificent Cosmos
8. The Magnificent Cosmos
In the background of this painting is the Hubble deep field that became
visible for the first time in a most remarkable photograph taken from outer
space by the Hubble telescope. The telescope, with the lens open for an extended
period, focused on a part of the sky that is dark to earthbound telescopes.
The telescope captured the faint light from countless, previously unseen
distant galaxies which are pictured in the collage as small spheres and oblongs
in the dark sky. Each personís history does extend back into the time when
galaxies were formed and even before. Although as a biology student I had
studied a great deal about the evolution of species, I hadn't known that
the origins of my person extended into the long, long history of the evolving
universe and the earth millennia before early plants and animals left a fossil
record. I don't think we have the language or the capacity to grasp and express
what this may mean! I find that it offers a certain grandeur to every person
and to the natural world as we have arisen out of such a unfathomably long,
creative process. This story of our origins can be the occasion of an awakening
to the mystery, the grandeur and intrinsic wisdom of the earth and universe.
Through these vast connections we may becomes more caring and compassionate
toward all of life.