The numbers are staggering--no, not even staggering, more like incomprehensible. When they start talking about half a billion light years from earth and a mass equivalent to a billion suns, one gets the impression that they're just making this stuff up.
No one can comprehend it, no matter how big-brained.
Come on, stop pretending that any of this computes. It kind of makes you feel puny, doesn't it? The heavens from time immemorial have lent themselves to just this sort of philosophical contemplation of human smallness.
According to Roman Emperor and erstwhile Stoic philosopher Marcus Aurelius
, the followers of Pythagoras
, a Greek philosopher of the 6th century B.C., best known for his theorem on right triangles, came together to contemplate the heavens every day, "to remind themselves how changelessly and punctually those bodies perform their appointed task."
Perhaps the Pythagoreans were unaware that supermassive black holes sometimes decide to careen through space in search of new galactic homes.
Their daily astronomical observations, says Aurelius, were "also to put them in mind of orderliness, purity and naked simplicity--for no veil clothes a star."
Sure, lots of stuff like orderly stars and disorderly super massive black holes clutter space, but from a spiritual perspective, says spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle, space, like Seinfeld, is a show about nothing.
In The Power of Now, Tolle writes: "The moment you make it [space] into something, you have missed it."
It is the emptiness of space, Tolle teaches, that resonates with us at the deepest level because in reality we are mostly empty space ourselves. "Even seemingly solid matter, including your physical body, is nearly 100 percent empty space — so vast are the distances between the atoms compared to their size. What is more, even inside every atom there is mostly empty space."
We are more like energy fields than anything solid, as is the material world in its entirety.
But our minds can't grasp the nothingness of empty space. Thus, contemplation of the heavens causes them to lock up, Tolle says.
It is in this state of "no-mind" that space produces that we become aware of the Unmanifested. We become aware of God.