God and the Cosmos
The more I learn about the world around me, the more I recognize the interconnected nature of all that exists. This line of thinking really began to dawn on me as I took a class on Native American Philosophy and Cosmovision, has continued as I delve deeper into Process Thought, and further came together this past weekend as I traveled to the Kennedy Space Center (KSC – astronauts love acronyms) in Florida for the God and the Cosmos course.
From all that I have learned and reflected upon over the past 48 hours, one image in particular (similar to the image above) that stands out to me comes from an IMAX film on the Hubble Telescope. Toward the middle of the presentation, the filmmakers show images that Hubble has recorded from the inside of the Orion Nebula, images that include miniature galaxies each surrounded by a cloud-looking substance that resembles a womb. Up to this point, much of what I have discerned regarding the interconnected nature of the universe has been relatively theoretical; this image, however, brings the reality to an entirely new level: I never would have imagined that galaxies form in a manner that so closely resembles the gestation of mammals, humans included.
Along these same lines, I also find it very striking that the stellar nurseries in which galaxies and other entities form are stars in the final stages of their lives. Such notions of circular evolution have been missing from Western understandings for far too long. As one astronaut said, “We go to the moon [and now to other reaches of space, at least through technology] in order to better understand the Earth.”
I certainly hope that this and related scientific understandings of how what is new comes directly from that which has been will contribute to an expansion of Western consciousness and appreciation without appropriation for Native American, Eastern, and other cultures which have recognized the circular and interconnected characteristics of life for many, many years.
Indeed, it is truly beautiful and hopeful to think that all of the molecules which currently align in a particular manner in order to make me who I am are the same molecules that have been part of the birth and rebirth of innumerable entities, not only on this planet but also throughout the universe as well. Even further, God is in each and every molecule of the universe. So when we see, hear, smell, taste, touch, and otherwise ascertain the cosmos and all therein, we sense the Divine.
Courtney grew up in Abingdon, Virginia and has spent the past few years (when not at Wake Div) living in different locations throughout southern West Virginia. She is passionate about Appalachia and creating spaces where people can think deeply on subjects surrounding life and spirituality.
Media Source: http://ajchristensen.com/?portfolio=imax-hubble-3d