Monday, August 21, 2017

Pondering the Eclipse

I noticed today, as the eclipse began, that there was no traffic noise to be heard in my neighborhood. The only vehicle I finally heard was the mailman. We were in the driveway, in our zero-gravity chairs, so I met him at the mailbox. I offered to let him peer through my eclipse glasses to see the sun about 40% obscured. But unfortunately a cloud covered the sun at that moment. He assured me that his wife was videoing the event. Uh, not the same.

We resumed our peaceful moment of eclipse-watching. And then the neighbor began mowing grass. At least that did not keep us from an excellent view of our favorite star. Just surprised me that anyone would willingly miss the spectacle.

I marvel that astronomers can predict so accurately these events. I also marvel that the two great lights of the sky, so of such vastly different sizes, appear to be almost exactly the same size. I saw an annular eclipse on May 30, 1984. The moon was farther away from the Earth at that time, so at its peak, the moon left a ring of the sun's light around all its edges.

This time, those in the path of totality saw the sun disappear behind the moon. The sky became dark as sunset for a couple of minutes.

Seeing the wonder of this eclipse today astounds me--that God would make this world so fascinating, predictable, beautiful, and stable. What a privilege to witness the glory of his creation.

You can't really tell it from this picture, but the sun
was about 70% eclipsed at this point today.