Thursday, April 7, 2011

Our Sky Daily Thursday, April 7

The planets cannot reverse course and take us backward in time; but the cool thing about living on earth is that when we pass between an outer planet and the sun, or when venus or mercury overtake us in their race around the blazing ball, they appear to go backwards.  That sounds so trivial to us, but for thousands of years that was all observers had; there were no telescopes or centuries of astronomical data to help folks tease out the reason for the smaller lights swinging back and forth against the constellations like petulant pendulums.

Now we know no planet stops in its tracks, retraces its path for weeks or months at a time, and then continues on its circular way: it is only a compelling optical illusion.  As mercury closes in on its illusory backup to the sun, (It reminds me of a forgetful person on the way to work in the morning who stops the car, turns around in the nearest driveway and goes back to the house: what did they forget?) with the new moon in Gemini, conversation will be more internal than external.  We feel the intelligence so close to our spirits that we can't help wondering and asking questions.  It is as though we want to talk to each other only to ask what has been heard from the messenger.  We'll be helping each other figure out the riddle by listening to each other and telling each other what is on our mind. 

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