18 December, 2011

The Red Rose Seen In Space

A rose seen in space - a star ending its life

This is one of those photos that blows my mind - a red rose in space.

It's not a red rose, of course. It's a photo from NASA.

A star ended it's life with a powerful explosion. The shock waves heated up the dust and gas clouds surrounding the supernova causing them to glow, thus creating this beautiful red cloud- and this is the red rose.

And, to quote NASA: "Much of the material from that original star was violently thrown out into space. However, some of the material remained in an incredibly dense object called a neutron star. This particular neutron star (too faint to be seen in this image) is moving inexplicably fast: over 3 million miles per hour! Astronomers are perplexed over its absurd speed, and have nicknamed the object the Cosmic Cannonball."

Sort of puts life into perspective, doesn't it?  Here we are little specks of dust, full of self  importance, with lives on earth that are over with a blink of the Universal eye.

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA

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3 comments:

  1. I bought the TV series "Cosmos" on DVD last Christmas,but only started watching it this weekend
    (because we got an 80 inch TV and I thought a space show would be great to view).
    I have never watched these programs before because I thought they would be too scientific in their approach,but I was wrong.I love the way Carl presented this series (although I have only watched the first four episodes,so far).
    In the second show,"One Voice in the Cosmic Fugue",Carl takes a rose from his lapel and pricks his finger to draw blood before talking about the inner cosmos of our human body.I remember thinking "I wonder if he is pointing to Rosicrucianism here?"
    He seemed quite spiritual to me,even if people try to claim that he wasn't.
    That rose image has stayed on my mind all weekend.Then I see this story here.
    As above,so below,is the message here I guess?

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  2. Good one! I hadn't seen this photo. It's just beautiful and certainly does put things in perspective.

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  3. One other thing about Carl Sagan and his nod to Spirituality.He called the TV series "Cosmos".
    And according to Wikipedia-

    " In the general sense, a cosmos is an orderly or harmonious system. It originates from the Greek term κόσμος (kosmos), meaning "order" or "ornament" and is antithetical to the concept of chaos."

    So,if he wasn't spiritually minded I'm sure he would have called the TV series something else like "The Universe".
    One other thing I found synchronistic about the show on a personal level,was in episode 3 "The Harmony of the Worlds" where he had a section about astrology and he consulted two newspapers to show two different readings for the same star sign.They were specifically for Libra with the dates in the newspaper showing Sept 23 to Oct 22.
    (Sept 23,being my birthday).
    I thought he may have been looking up his own star sign,but he was born on Nov 9th.Libra is also considered the goddess of balance and truth,so maybe that was the point he was trying to make.
    Who knows?

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