Thursday, October 15, 2009

A Bigger Picture

The url above is to a press release from NASA which talks about the results from a satellite that has returned information about the boundary area between our solar system and the galaxy of we are a part. 
These results allow:

"The first comprehensive sky map of our solar system and its location in the Milky Way galaxy. The new view will change the way researchers view and study the interaction between our galaxy and sun."

The lack of such a map was not part of my mechanical mental furniture, and yet how wonderful to now hear about something like this: I cannot even comprehend the mathematics that are critical here, and surely my grasp of these words could not be adequate to the reality that the scientists are thrilled about.
The only way for me to evaluate my picture of all this is to go beyond my picture of say, the solar system.
And even then, as one lets new pictures percolate, as this article allows, the fun is the fun of the edge, the fun of the new. The fun of the dimly comprehended which is yet plausible.

Perhaps my sentiments here are an example of what older theological systems called: faith.  Not--- hearing about some clumsy puppet figure and saying well that makes no sense but I will try hard to think it's real.

Perhaps faith is --- just what it was once described as
"the evidence of things unseen."

Perhaps the "evidence of things unseen," is this thrill of a border, a border from which things are just glimpsed, but not outlined in great detail (then it would not be a border.)

I can imagine some NASA person reading the above and thinking, nice lady, she reads our press releases and will probably encourage her congressman to vote more money for science.

No, they missed it.  The scientists are in the same boat I am, different edges, but the same boat.

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