The whirlwind of the human world is a convincing reality that sometimes captures my full attention. When that happens I become completely engaged in the environmental, political, social and economic challenges of our time. I seek to make sense of it all by sorting information and events, testing them with the tool of reason for their validity.
Invariably I loose patience as many around me rely on faith to interpret events and trust some authority to guide them in their thinking. Then I enter this dark mind space where I wonder if humanity as a species is intelligent enough to handle the technologies that were developed by a few bright members of our species.
That is when I need to find perspective to protect my light and tonight I found that perspective by sitting in the garden after dark. The new moon had not yet risen and the milky way was a clear band through the night sky. It was warm enough to be comfortable and so I decided to stay a while.
Soon a meteor streaked through the sky and then another. I repositioned my chair to face the southern sky, leaning back to keep the apex in sight. There were a couple of airplanes but what grabbed my attention next was a satellite as is moved steady as a rock, south east to north west. The minutes slipped by as I contemplated the orbits that these craft hold and the forces that keep them there.
Then another satellite, probably the space station, made its way from west to east but faded into blackness almost directly overhead as it moved into the earth's shadow. As I settled deeper into the awe of seeing the stars without the interference of city lights, I thought of Oma and wondered if her consciousness was manifest on any of the thousand stars whose photons were reaching my retina.
Quite suddenly there was a bright flash. Did I imagine it? Was it some kind of searchlight from a plane? There was no sound so I kept my eyes on that spot in the sky and within minutes there was another flash brighter than any star, but just for an instant. Musing that it was the golden thread of love I was rewarded by a third flash as bright as the other two.
I do not know of anything that can produce this kind of effect. A supernova lasts too long and would not come in threes. A plane has constant flashing lights and noise, a satellite is moving and steady in its light. Besides these were brighter than any of those. Even iridium flares last longer and tend to be moving.
So until I get a better explanation, I will be content to hypothesize that it was a beam of light from Oma to remind me that life on earth is fleeting and fragile and that I must never forget the big picture that is the cosmos.