Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Ignorable Pale Blue Dot

My online friend Kid, who writes at Diary of a Right Wing Peace Loving Pussycat, loves to post pictures of space. His latest picture is a fantastic picture of Saturn, with earth in the background.

Underneath the picture is a caption written by someone from NASA.

"Explanation: In the shadow of Saturn, unexpected wonders appear. The robotic Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn drifted in giant planet's shadow for about 12 hours in 2006 and looked back toward the eclipsed Sun. Cassini saw a view unlike any other. First, the night side of Saturn is seen to be partly lit by light reflected from its own majestic ring system. Next, the rings themselves appear dark when silhouetted against Saturn, but quite bright when viewed away from Saturn, slightly scattering sunlight, in this exaggerated color image. Saturn's rings light up so much that new rings were discovered, although they are hard to see in the image. Seen in spectacular detail, however, is Saturn's E ring, the ring created by the newly discovered ice-fountains of the moon Enceladus and the outermost ring visible above. Far in the distance, at the left, just above the bright main rings, is the almost ignorable pale blue dot of Earth."

Click on the picture to see a better view. The last line of the caption caught my attention. “Far in the distance, at the left, just above the bright main rings, is the almost ignorable pale blue dot of Earth.”

“Almost ignorable.”

Earth is almost ignorable. Except for that pesky created by God thing. That tiny “pale blue dot” is the most important spot in the universe.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
Genesis 1:1

See you on Monday.


  1. You are so right! You can't very well ignore the only planet in our solar system capable of sustaining life, can you? :-) Sad thing is though that I can't even see it in the picture - but, it is still a magnificent shot :-)

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  2. Gidget, if you click on the picture and look at the larger image, the earth is a tiny (and I mean tiny!) blue dot about 10 o'clock on the Saturn's rings.

  3. Things like this are still meaningful to me, though. It's important to remember how insignificant (scientifically) a space we claim in God's vast creation, to fully appreciate all that He has given us. And keep us humble as we think of how easily we could vanish, with hardly a ripple, if He saw fit.

  4. Ah, I found this site today, and other than the word 'apologist' being related to Christian education, I was unsure of whether this site was pro-home education merely, or pro-home education with a side of religion. Your support of HSLDA as defender of home education (true but not the whole truth) and your belief that home schooling is under constant attack also were hints. But here it is outright.

    by the way, there are plenty of home schooled who are not religious at all, and as a home school parent of 14 years, I wish that the concerns of home education would be presented separate from the concerns of Chrisitianity. They are NOT the same thing.

  5. Shadowspring, thank you for taking the time to read this blog and leave a comment. We love to hear from our readers. First and foremost, this blog was intended to speak up in defense of all homeschooling, from secular to religious, from unschooling to structured schooling, with everything in between. I am most concerned about preserving the right to homeschool than any other issue.

    I am pleased to have the legal representation of the HSLDA if I ever need it, in the same way that I was pleased to have the liability insurance from a teacher’s union when I taught professionally. I wasn’t a big fan of being in the union, but I could not buy $2 million in liability insurance at a cheaper rate on the open market. I was encouraged to retain such coverage by family members who also taught. I do not pay much attention to the HSLDA’s other activities. I just want their legal assistance.

    I am a follower of Christ. It is a part of my identity. Sometimes, when I write on this blog, I write from a Christian perspective. That usually happens on a slow news day. More often than not, I don’t. If you take the time to read past posts, you will see that Christianity and homeschooling are not presented as the same thing. The 9/13/11 and 9/14/11 posts demonstrate that. Please don’t judge me by just The Ignorable Pale Blue Dot. And trust me, I’ve earned a heap of criticism from Christians concerning my writing. I piss off Christians more than any other group. That’s okay. I’ve long maintained that the average Christian is a big ol’ pain in my behind. But that’s for another dialogue.

    Please continue reading and commenting. I’d love to read a new voice with new ideas that encourage a thoughtful and respectful dialogue.

    Thank you, again, for your comments.