The vineyards were already established before the LORD chose the stewards who were to administer them. Angels and Man both.
The Angels did not cause the celestial heavens to open up in golden light and wondrous life. Neither did we establish our own space-time existence. Its constants, symmetries, its depths, its heights, its width and breadth, its limits and ultimate purposes we neither caused nor willed.
Nor may we ever fully comprehend them.
The fact that we may think about these thoughts makes us unique. But are we special?
Yes, I believe we were caused to make each other so. Not to assume it - to make it so. To make it so that we can live in a world fully aware of the knowledge that we are the children of Mankind. We may likewise chose to undo our common dignity and ignore our common calling.
We are not central to anything in anything in the universe unless one becomes alive and aware of the being of our being... and be unto each other a keeper of our common humanity and together - faithful stewards of the life of temporal creation.
It is truly humbling to peer into a telescope and realize how small and insignificant we are. Also humbling is to realize that from small and insignificant beginnings, we are together called to shine as the stars.
Carl Sagan and Eugene Shoemaker are two of my most favorite scientists.
|Carl Edward Sagan 19341109-19961220|
Carl Sagan hated the sins of religion because he loved science. I feel sympathy for his atheism to be honest. It is a reaction to the evils wrought by the sins of the recent past. Yes, the sins of religion. Not of God but of the harmful ways Man chose and still chooses to react to the Divine Reality. The structural sins from which St. John Paul II asked the Church to purge herself of.
The fact that Carl was able to think and decide to do something good about his life makes him special in my eyes. He lives on in his legacy. In a way, as a fellow lover of the universe, I am an inheritor of his labors. And for him, I am grateful.
Now if you were to ask me, does Carl or Eugene for that matter, live on in the afterlife? I would say, I certainly hope so... I do not know and that is wonderful enough for me.
When we ponder the universe looking for traces of God in the furthest places, with longing eyes and empty hearts, we will always behold a void - hostile, cold, irradiated, and mostly empty - staring us right back.
It is only when we know our place in creation that we shall appreciate what it is to dwell among the stars.
Carl Sagan did. We all look for a place among the stars in our own way. We are wanderers after all. Our planet is a wanderer among worlds. Our sun is a wanderer among stars. Our own galactic community is a wanderer among countless galaxies. Time itself is a wanderer in space.
|The original pale blue dot - Earth from 3.7 billion miles away |
Is everything wandering because we are lost? Was time put into motion for nothing?
That depends. The answers I feel are here on earth and not up there in the temporal heavens. Truth is in the heart. Because of it, faith seeks understanding.
Faith is essentially an expectation of true things. It is a knowledge that precedes all knowledge. It seeks even without our seeking, born of a Truth prior to all that is truth.
Faith in religion and faith in science are essentially the same seeking. Both science and religion must trust in order to produce fruit. And the fruits they produce, if they are good, are good.
Good being something of grace and produced separate and apart from the labors of both religion and science.
Science and religion are not incompatible, I think. Some people may seek to pit them against each other but knowledge will still remain knowledge, truth truth, and people people.
Today is Earth day. What I wish for is for us to view our planet as it is - in its littleness and insignificance - all the more, our home away from Home.
Salaam. Shalom. Peace. May God bless us all.