Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Planets

Work continues a pace on our new exhibition at the Arches.

Thinking about religion, the Gods, fate etc always makes me think about a series of lectures I went to at the Science Centre Planetarium in Glasgow. Five weeks of two levtures conducted under the amazing planetarium dome where all the stars of the universe were hanging above our heads. At the end of the lecture series the tutor got us all to close our eyes. Dutifully we did so only to reopen them to see - the exact same starry night we'd been looking at just a few seconds before?

After allowing us a couple of seconds of disapointment the lecturer said we didn't look very impressed. He then said that we just taken the biggest trip any of us would ever take. The planetarium projector had just been reconfigured, instead of showing us the nights sky as it looks from Earth it had switched to showing the universe from several hundred light years to one side. Using his laser indicator he pointed out the four stars of a consteallation he had previously explained to us 1, 2, 3, 4 . . . . and now 5.

This new fifth star which had joined the end of the consteallation was actually our own sun viewed from outside our solar system. All of human history, all our great works and all our failures, all the dreams, hopes, achievements, sorrow and joy of our race's existance was encompassed on just one tiny little dot of light on the domed roof. Makes you feel pretty small.

1 comment:

Tami Cohen said...

my children and i miss pluto dearly

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...