|Go me||September 25, 2016, 12:18 am|
So thirty years ago today I turned four years old. Somehow or other my dumbass self has avoided bodily destruction and hence death itself.
|That time of the year again||September 24, 2015, 11:14 pm|
|Time for me to move up the ladder of aging one more rung. This time I'm 33. Seems surreal for me to say that, but hey, I was born in '82 and this IS 2015, so there you go. Not that I think 33 is old - it's not - but God, seems like yesterday I had just turned 20 :(|
|Death||November 26, 2014, 4:23 pm|
Just wanted to write about something that I've been mulling over for the past several days. And that is death.
Now death is something not many people want to talk or even think about. It's understandable - it is the end of a person's life (I realize all things die in some way, shape or form but I will keep this centered on us humans). I often think of my own impending death, and it is not the thought of my biological form dying that scares me, it's quite honestly I don't know HOW I will die. I could be hit by a semi going 100 mph down the freeway. I could die silently in my sleep. There are quite a few ways to die naturally, and many more where you die unnaturally. The point is, I don't know. And unless you've been suffering through, say, cancer and are approaching your final hurrah, or you have a death wish of some kind and are contemplating suicide, you won't know until it's that final moment.
It should also be said that even if you did live to say four or five hundred years, eventually your life would come to an end.
Your mortal being will, at some point, die. It is something you should be getting ready for because ever since the day you were born, no, since you were conceived up til this point in what we call time, you've been heading towards death.
And then for the hard question.
And after that...? What?
What happens when we die?
Lots of people think that when you die, that's it, game over, you're done, finished and gone. You'll pass on into an eternity of dreamless sleep and your corpse will rot into the ground to become one with the Earth once more. Lots of others tell of how they died in some way, left their body and passed over into the Great Beyond. The fact of the matter is that only after you die will you know for sure what will happen when you die. For the time being, here in this mortal body on planet Earth, all I can do is wonder about it.
I think of death as an experience, much like being born and being alive are experiences.
Now, personally I would be delighted and in a state of euphoria if when I died and headed towards that fabled light that was a place like Paradise waiting on me. I'd be moved beyond words. But the thing is - I don't KNOW. I don't know for a fact that anything happens when you die.
And that, more than the fact of my approaching death itself, and exactly how I'm going to die, is what scares me. Then too, death has to be looked at like this: suppose that when you die, that's all there is afterwards - nothingness, not that that can imagined by the human mind. Then there would be nothing to be afraid of - you'd dead and that's it. Now, then, if there WAS something after death, some kind of afterlife, who is to say what that afterlife would be like for YOU, you yourself? Would be it good, as in Paradise? Would be it awful, terrible, as in some version of Hell? Once again, all the people who have died and (for the sake of argument) have indeed passed over the Great Divide haven't come back to fill us in.
|1009821630 seconds||September 25, 2014, 8:28 am|
|...or 32 years. Which, coincidentally, is how old/young I am today. Hooray! :D|
|Thoughts||September 22, 2014, 3:56 pm|
I, speaking for myself, really enjoy sitting and thinking about these subjects, if you couldn't tell, which is why I wrote about them.
You are sitting here by yourself. You are typing words and they are appearing on a computer monitor in front of you. You feel keyboard keys moving under your fingers. How often do you sit and think about that action? You are quite literally moving matter - your body - with your mind. So then, comes the question: What are we, exactly?
Are we matter, or mind?
Also, when you're sitting there typing on your keyboard whatever it is you're typing, you're doing something. You are thinking. You are coming up with words - thoughts - in a human-made language. But what is human? We are evolved apes. Apes are animals. We, then, are animals. We, everything alive on Earth, are living matter.
Living matter. Think about that for a while. Think hard. It's quite mind-boggling when you come to that realisation.
Speaking of matter, it is not actually physical. What we think of as solid things, with weight and substance, are actually progressively tinier bits of matter. Scientists have discovered sub atomic particles so small their mass basically doesn't exist. But it does exist. Which is even more mind-blowing.
Now let's talk about Earth.
Let's talk specifically about the roundness of the planet. While it is not perfectly round, it's certainly round enough. And it's huge, at least relative to us. One thing in particular that always kind of blew my mind, and still does, was that no matter where you were on Earth, from your point of view, everything would look flat and straight ahead. Say you were in Australia. You literally would be nearly upside-down. You really would be upside-down at the South Pole.
Earth, in a very broad sense of the word, is our home. For now it is our only home. We really should try to protect it and take care of it. Neil Armstrong said the Earth was so small as seen from the moon that he could literally put up his thumb and hide our planet behind it. Needless to say that would make me feel very, very small indeed.
I do believe at some point, maybe not too distant in the future, that we will build settlements on the moon. I can easily see moon bases a century from now. Everyone alive on Earth has, at least once, seen a moonrise. Now imagine being on the moon and seeing an Earthrise. Imagine the oppurtunities for astronomers living on the moon, for instance.Now imagine us, humanity, colonizing other worlds, Mars, the moons of the gas and ice giants, Pluto. Now take it a step further and imagine us creating the technology needed to colonize other worlds around stars that far, far away. I personally think it will be quite awhile before we see that kind of technology.
|ZoSo||August 22, 2014, 7:26 am|
I went and saw these guys live last night with my older brother at The Orange Peel over in Asheville, NC. I have to say, these dudes bring it. If, for whatever reason, you didn't know who Led Zeppelin was and had never heard any of their music, recorded or live, you might be tricked into thinking these guys were the Real Deal. Excellent show. I would say the only downer was the fact that Stairway to Heaven wasn't played, but to make up for it, they DID play No Quarter, which is one of favorite Led Zep tunes.
Also when the drummer walked up to the front of the stage at the end of the show I caught one of his drumsticks :)
|You do not exist||August 4, 2014, 11:26 am|
|Lately I've been reading a lot about the nature of reality. As I understand it, reality comes down to this: All five of your senses: hearing, taste, touch, sight, and smell, are electrical impulses inside your brain. Therefore, how do you know that the reality you perceive with said five senses is really real, that this is the ultimate reality? You can't; it's impossible. All of you Doomworlders could be just a figment of my overheated imagination. But by the same token, I could be a figment of your overheated imagination. What is one to believe?|
|Me and the Universe||July 25, 2014, 9:16 pm|
So tonight I walked outside and looked up at the night sky, and since there was no moon the stars seemed really bright, brighter than usual. I live out in the country, just outside town, and there's very little light pollution, if any, so maybe that's why. Anyway, I got to thinking: I'm actually looking deep, deep into the past. Those stars are just like our Sun (in that they are nuclear furnaces anyway), but they are so unbelievably far away so as to appear like tiny glowing dots. I thought: how far are these objects from Earth, and how far away are they from each other? It was quite mind-blowing to think about. Then I went back inside and looked up pictures of stars and galaxies on Google Images and had my mind blown further still. I kept trying to imagine the distances to these places and objects, their sheer size, their ancient ages. The feeling I got from it, and always have, is a very deep sense of humility and awe. It makes me feel unimaginably tiny, but I'm also grateful, grateful to be alive in a period of human history where we can actually detect planets around stars, see galaxies that are over ten billion light years out, where humans can, in a limited sense of course, live in space. And all this is just the beginning. Who knows where we as a species may be in another century, provided of course we don't nuke ourselves into nuclear winter or some other catastrophe, over some nonsensical religious or governmental ideology.
|Lunar Eclipse||April 12, 2014, 3:10 pm|
|As some of you may or may not know this coming Monday morning North America (which is where I'm located, not to put too fine a point on it) will be treated to a lunar eclipse. I've never seen one with my own two eyes before; I would love to. I have seen two lunar halos and they were awesome and, to me, awe-inspiring. Have any of you fine folks here witnessed any celestial happenings such as this? Another thing I've yet to witness is a meteor shower - that would also be badass.|
|In orbit||February 22, 2014, 9:38 pm|
So today I read a book I hadn't read in a great while, Cosmos, by a certain Carl Sagan. Personally I think it's one of the coolest books ever written, partly because I'm in love with astronomy and even if I wasn't such a fan of it, then I would still like Cosmos. It's just a really good read. Pick it up and read it today or tomorrow or some time, I guarantee you'll like it. Reading all this and that about galaxies and planets and shit got me to thinking, which can be dangerous. Here my thoughts as follows:
I love space, I think I've proved that by reading most of Cosmos today. It is so fascinating. Why is it fascinating you say? You really have to ask? Go outside on a clear night and look up, that's all you have to do. A starry night sky, with a full moon, is one of the most beautiful things you can ever see. And here's something to think about: you know how people have been talking for years and years about inventing a time machine? Space is the ultimate time machine. Why? Because we're here, and all those galaxies, stars and planets are OUT THERE - really out there. Light, as fast as it is, takes time, real time, to get here to our eyes so we can see these things. How much time? It depends. The nearest star to our sun is Proxima Centauri. It's a mere four light years. But here's the thing. A light year is at or around six TRILLION miles. Let me repeat that: six TRILLION miles. Promixa Centauri is four light years away. That comes out to about twenty four trillion miles. If New Horizons wasn't going to Pluto but was going to Promixa Centauri instead, it would take literally tens and tens of thousands of years to cross that distance. Imagine: all that blackness, all that silence, all those stars in all directions, every one of them light years and light years away. It simply breaks the human imagination to conceive of such distances and such time scales. It's scary but it's true.
Space does not fuck around when it comes to making things huge and far, far away. Take the moon as another example. It's the nearest celestial body to our Earth, but even so, it's over 240,000 miles away. If you could somehow walk up to the moon, taking a step every second (or something like that) it would take you over a decade to get to the moon. And again, it breaks the human imagination to imagine such things. When you look at an image of the Andromeda galaxy, you're not seeing that galaxy as it is right now. You're seeing as it was in the distant, distant past, over two million years ago. There are loads of galaxies, where, when their light left to begin its voyage to Earth, our Sun hadn't been born, let alone our solar system. How's that for a mind fuck? There are galaxies so far away that, even if you were to live for the next, say, five hundred years, their light would still be well, well upon its way, and so you still wouldn't see them - even after five hundred years. But five hundred years is a flash in the pan, cosmically speaking. Let's try five hundred thousand years. After all that time had elapsed, those galaxies' light would STILL be on its way here. Alright then, how about five MILLION years? That light would STILL be on its fucking way here. What I'm trying to get across is that space is absolutely positively can't deny it at all one hundred percent and then some tee totally motherfucking MASSIVE.
Oh and it's really pretty too ;)