What is funny and almost criminal about human beings is that we talk far reaching philosophy and when the time comes where our philosophical admirations might truly help us we become very anthropoid. We give in to our basic instincts.
But I have come to realise that words can only do so much and this is coming from someone who aspires to be a writer one day. But yes, words can only do so much because I strongly believe that it is only through philosophical experiments that we beget tangible results that we may apply in our own lives.
And I’ve been doing one such philosophical experiment quite unintentionally for long now.
Star gazing. There is something fascinating about sitting on my rooftop and taking in the sky. It’s during that moment that poetry surges in my mind. Did god spill his ink bottle? When the sky is spectacularly studded with stars, I have an urge to sweep them together and collect them in my hands. But after some time, as the poetic fancy passes, I realize some things more profound. Here I’m bickering about how I’m in the wrong college and how things are not going my way, I look up to see that the stars are aligned…
During my philosophical meditations, I think about how many of us, strangers to each other, could be looking up at the same star, and seizing the beauty of it and a strange feeling of companionship holds me as I stand there, isolated from city lights and urban noises.
The looming figure of the sky almost engulfs me when I think of how I’m looking up at the past. Everything that I see up in the sky is only how it was and not how it is. The lights from all these stars had to leave many light years ago to reach earth tonight and I’m looking up at the past, living in the present. I think of this beautiful blend of time. The pastness of the sky meeting the presentness of the world.
And it’s only when I look for the future, that I realise , it doesn’t exist. I don’t mean this in a nihilist sort of way.
Go to your rooftop. Look up at the past and embrace the present and create with the both, the best future you’re capable of living.
I cannot stress enough the importance of stargazing and how it has helped me during all the rough times. It’s important that we look up more and look down less. We are small, incredibly small. In the larger scheme of things, we are nothing but dust. One light year is 9.46×10¹² kilometers and most of the stars you see are at least 4 light years away.
Tonight, I want you to go to your rooftop and look for a yellowish star in the sky. It’s the Betelgeuse which is 642.5 light years away! It is impossible to imagine the distance. This star will explode and the effect it creates is a stunning night sky where the result of this supernova explosion is a brilliant source of light bigger and better than the rest. Sadly, this won’t happen in our lifetimes. So, bid adieu to Betelgeuse.
Our worries are silenced and our thoughts vaporise in the bigger picture. Look up, these are balls of fire, far far away from you. Is there a greater human achievement than witnessing something you can never ever get close to?
Star gazing is a hobby you will never get tired of. The sky is beautiful. Look up more. Look down less. Both literally and figuratively.