N.W.BOYER…Christian Author

Science

FINDING HOPE and PURPOSE

Years ago I found a little book with words and pictures drawn by Trina Paulus. She published it in 1972. Why I have hung onto this book for so long is anyone’s guess.

However, in this day of cut throat elections of 2020 and the depressive feelings of being closed in…I think I know why this book has a message.

There are climbers for “being on top” in our world today. We often teach our children that they must push for success rather than finding their true purpose. People follow this philosophy, believing that they will find happiness and contentment in life…even if it is, at times, at the expense of others.

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Grab a rope and hang on…for we are going to make a very high climb as I share some portions of this enchanting book with you. Perhaps we, together, can find a lesson for our own lives.

As we pray for and look for hope for the world, the title of this book is HOPE FOR THE FLOWERS. The Author begins this way:

“Once upon a time a tiny striped caterpillar burst from the egg which had been home for so long. “Hello world,” he said. “It sure is bright out here in the sun.”

So the caterpillar begins to eat the leaves in which he was born. After much eating, he stopped and wondered if there was more to life than just eating. Climbing down the tree, he decided to look around and see more of the world. He found grass, dirt and bugs that he had never known about. Eventually, he saw a long line of other crawling caterpillars, all heading in the same direction. They were all heading to a large pile of more caterpillars pushing and shoving.

The caterpillar in this story is named Stripe. Stripe was”pushed, kicked and stepped on from every direction. It was climb or be climbed upon. No more “fellow caterpillars” on Stripe’s pile…they became only threats and obstacles which he turned into steps and opportunities.”

As they tried to climb to the top, Stripe finally asked a fellow-climber, “What’s at the top?”

Nobody seemed to know, but Stripe had a conscience because he said, “How can I step on someone I’ve just talked to?”

He also found, along the way, a beautiful caterpillar named Yellow. She talked with Stripe, but he lost track of her until one day when he stepped directly on her head. It was then that Stripe began to believe that climbing on top of other caterpillars hour after hour was an unhappy experience. To try to reach some mysterious place made him say, “…no matter what is up there, it isn’t worth it!” After telling Yellow he was sorry, he saw Yellow begin to cry.

She said, “I didn’t know how badly I felt about this life until then. Now when you look at me so kindly, I know for sure I don’t like this life. I just want to do something like crawl with you and nibble grass. This was how much she liked Stripe.

Stripe said, “I would like that too.” They had found not only another way to live, but to love and made a decision to give up this monumental climb to the top.

As with many decisions, doubts set in and Stripe decided to leave Yellow and try the climb once more. During the pushing and shoving, he saw a climber falling back down from the top. He barely made out the words being said, “…butterflies alone!” He didn’t know what this meant. Meanwhile, Yellow came each day to the high pile of climbers and watched to see if she would see Stripe…to no avail.

One day, Yellow saw a grey-haired caterpillar hanging on a branch upside down. Asking if she could help, the caterpillar replied, “Oh no, my dear, I have to do this to become a butterfly.”

Doing a little research, Yellow found out that a butterfly drinks the nectar from the flowers and carries the seeds of LOVE from one flower to another. She learned that “without butterflies, the world would soon have few flowers.”

To think that inside herself, as a fuzzy caterpillar, there was a change going to happen. She could be eventually a flying, beautiful butterfly! This was hard to understand.

She longed to tell Stripe that she had found that she could have a completely new life. However, she didn’t know where he might be on the pile of caterpillars. She was told that once she had her new life, she could fly and find him…giving him the good news. It would take time.

Finding new patience and purpose, she continued to give attention to all that she had to do in order to make this wonderful new life a reality.

Stripe, in the mean time, has become ruthless in his climb. He stepped on those around him and said, “Don’t blame me if you don’t succeed! It’s a tough life….”

Then one day as he neared the top of the pile, Stripe heard something more than ruthless from one of his climbing-mates,

“None of us can get any higher without getting rid of them.”

The bodies of caterpillars that were in the way began to fall as others pushed them off the pile.

One caterpillar yelled, “THERE IS NOTHING HERE AT ALL!”

Another yelled, “QUIET, FOOL! THEY’LL HEAR YOU DOWN THE PILE. WE’RE WHERE THEY WANT TO GET. THAT’S WHAT’S HERE!

Stripe could see that those who knew the truth wanted to keep others from knowing that all their climbing would led them to nothing.

Just at that moment, a beautiful yellow butterfly was circling the pile of caterpillars. There was something about her that look familiar. Stripe knew immediately what he had to do…as he began his long climb DOWN, looking into the eyes of each climbing caterpillar.

“There’s nothing there.” he warned them.

He had never noticed before that each one had something beautiful and different in their eyes. He let them know that to get to the top, one had to fly, which they could each one do if they only knew and waited for their potential. There was something inside that could give them freedom and peace. THEY COULD BE THE HOPE FOR THE FLOWERS.

Stripe and Yellow Together again!

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When we find our purposes as individuals…and as a country….we might also bring hope to the world.

(With respect for the Author, Trina Paulus, and her words/drawings, I will share the Amazon website below, in case you want to read the entire book.


Tribute to the SALT of the EARTH

This blog is a solemn tribute to the HARD WORKERS of our country, who produce the foods that are so readily available in our markets.  When all seems lost from weather or any action that hurts the bottom line…they keep the faith and instead of giving up…they continue to know that the fields they look upon are God’s field…and  HE CAN INTERVENE.

 

Everytime we go to buy groceries, think about those past and present who worked fields and NEVER GAVE UP…even in the hardest of times.  Shelton portrays the heartache of those who felt there was no hope.  Thank God for those who kept the faith and came through with God’s help.

Video  Turn up sound:

 


Pondering Space

Earth is one tiny planet amid the fullness of space that may have no end.  It boggles the mind.  Through the genius of scientific inventions, we have only scratched the surface to what is out there….way out there…in the universe.  A few scientific minds have brought this vastness to us to ponder.  Yet, how many of us actually go out on a dark, winter night to see all that we can possibly see of a fraction of what we know?   Our days are filled with earthly things.  Maybe it is time for us to think about the heavenly.

 

History of the discovery of a special comet…Tempel 1

“On the night of April 3, 1867, at Marseilles Observatory in France, Wilhelm Tempel discovered a ninth-magnitude comet near the star Zubeneschamali, in the constellation of Libra, the Scales. Unfortunately, the comet – Tempel’s ninth over the previous eight years – would remain rather dim and unimpressive as it followed a path through Libra and into nearby Scorpius, the Scorpion.

Despite its poor showing, however, Tempel’s find attracted considerable attention when calculations showed that it was moving around the Sun in an elliptical orbit, taking only about 5 years to complete one trip around the Sun.

tempel_at_marseille discovered comet temple1

Wilhelm Tempel

 At that time, astronomers knew of only eight other comets with short-period orbits (comets taking less than 200 years to revolve around the Sun). This was also the first of two periodic comets that would ultimately bear Tempel’s name. Today it is cataloged as Comet 9P/Tempel 1 (the ninth periodic comet discovered and the first of the two periodic comets discovered by Tempel).

By the end of August 1867, Comet Tempel 1 had faded away as it moved back out into space. Near aphelion (that point in its orbit farthest from the Sun), the comet passed close to Jupiter, and the planet’s massive gravitational pull significantly altered the comet’s orbit. In fact, the next expected approach of Comet Tempel 1 to the Sun was delayed by 118 days in early 1873, all because of Jupiter’s interference. As a result, the comet’s orbital period was lengthened slightly to almost exactly six years. The comet was observed again during the spring of 1879.

But on its outward journey following its 1879 appearance, Comet Temple 1 had another encounter with Jupiter in 1881, this time coming much closer to that giant world than before. So dramatic in fact, were the changes wrought by Jupiter upon the comet’s orbit, that Tempel 1 went completely unobserved during 1885. And with no new information concerning the comet’s altered path through space, astronomers considered it hopelessly lost.

Interestingly, however, the game of tug-of-war between Jupiter and Comet Tempel was far from over. In fact, about every 12 years, the two objects came close to each other and each time the comet’s path through space was slightly altered.

By the 1960’s astronomers had changed their method of computing orbits and were now using electronic computers. Although the computing technology of more than 40 years ago was stone-age compared to today’s PCs, those early computers did allow for a relatively easy study of comet orbits…

It was orbital expert Brian Marsden, who in 1963 initiated an investigation into the loss of Comet Tempel 1. He and astronomers, J. Schubart and G. Schrutka issued predictions for possible returns of the comet in 1967 and 1972 – of which the latter apparition was expected to be very favorable… Comet Temple 1 has since been observed on five more returns to the Sun. On New Years’ Eve in 1997, the Hubble Space Telescope was even able to detect the comet nucleus: a potato-shaped lump of rock coated with icy, volatile gases measuring roughly 8 miles (14 kilometers) long… (Joe Rao, Skywatching columnist)

Tempel 1 before Deep Impact

Tempel 1 Alive with Light This spectacular image of comet Tempel 1 was taken 67 seconds after it obliterated Deep Impact’s impactor spacecraft. The image was taken by the high-resolution camera on the mission’s flyby craft. Scattered light from the collision saturated the camera’s detector, creating the bright splash seen here. Linear spokes of light radiate away from the impact site, while reflected sunlight illuminates most of the comet surface. The image reveals topographic features, including ridges, scalloped edges and possibly impact craters formed long ago.  (writing by Ashley Strickland..CNN) (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD)

The Deep Impact probe of the comet, Tempel 1:    On 4 July 2005, Tempel 1 was deliberately struck by one component of the NASA Deep Impact probe, one day before perihelion. The impact was photographed by the other component of the probe, which recorded a bright spray from the impact site. The impact was also observed by earthbound and space telescopes, which recorded a brightening of several magnitudes…  

The crater that formed was not visible to Deep Impact due to the cloud of dust raised by the impact, but was estimated to be between 100 and 250 meters in diameter and 30 meters deep. The probe’s spectrometer instrument detected dust particles finer than a human hair and discovered the presence of silicates, carbonates, smectite, metal sulfides or fool’s gold, amorphous carbon and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.  Water ice was also detected.  (Wikipedia)

 

What can we say then….only that “The heavens declare the glory of God;

and the firmament sheweth His handiwork…”  Psalm 19:1

 

Video:  Deep Impact- Orbiter Space Flight Simulator 2010  (turn up sound)

 

 

 


History: Identity Control…Have We Learned?

Tomorrow is the beginning of “Early Voting” in my state, USA.  Many people think it is important who is in government control (local or national) and others could care less.  We better care if we have learned anything from history.

I write about this not to promote one candidate or another, but reflect on what history may teach us on government and control… if we pay attention.  The problem is that we rarely connect past history with the potential present or future history and what it may look like.  Therefore, we will take a look at past history and hope that our skin does not crawl…but it will.

Did you know that one of the most famous names in our USA Supreme Court was responsible for the cutting off many individual rights during the early 20th century?  Here’s his picture…Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Oliver_Wendell_Holmes_Jr_circa_1930 Supreme Crt Judge

Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in 1930, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. was appointed by President Theodore Roosevelt.

Why was this esteemed man important?  He had a great deal to do with the philosophy of Eugenics.  Here is what he said on the matter of a court case from Virginia entitled Buck v Bell in which he voted  Yes to enforce the following:

Buck v. Bell

(from Wikipedia) “In 1927, Holmes wrote the 8–1 majority opinion in Buck v. Bell case that upheld the Virginia Sterilization Act of 1924 and the forced sterilization of Carrie Buck who was claimed to be mentally defective. Although later scholarship has shown the suit was collusive and Carrie Buck was probably of normal intelligence. The record before the Supreme Court showed only that she had received a proper hearing in which she was represented by a competent guardian, and was able to press her suit in the federal courts. She apparently had received the procedures required by due process of law in ample measure. The argument made on her behalf was principally that the statute requiring sterilization of institutionalized persons was unconstitutional, itself a violation of what today is called “substantive due process”. Holmes repeated familiar arguments that statutes would not be struck down if they appeared on their face to have a reasonable basis. In support of his argument that the interest of “public welfare” outweighs the interest of individuals in their bodily integrity, he argued:

(Quote by Judge Holmes) “We have seen more than once that the public welfare may call upon the best citizens for their lives. It would be strange if it could not call upon those who already sap the strength of the State for these lesser sacrifices, often not felt to be such by those concerned, to prevent our being swamped with incompetence. It is better for all the world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime, or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind. The principle that sustains compulsory vaccination is broad enough to cover cutting the Fallopian tubes … Three generations of imbeciles are enough.”

Although the opinion and eugenics remain controversial, the decision in the case still stands. Sterilization rates under eugenics laws in the United States climbed from 1927 until Skinner v. Oklahoma, 316 U.S. 535 (1942). While Skinner v. Oklahoma did not specifically overturn Buck v. Bell, it created enough of a legal quandary to discourage many sterilizations…”

“A historical marker was erected on May 2, 2002 in Charlottesville, Virginia where Carrie Buck was born.  Virginia Governor Mark R. Warner offered the “Commonwealth’s sincere apology for Virginia’s participation in eugenics,” noting that “the eugenics movement was a shameful effort in which state government never should have been involved.”  (Paul A Lombardo U of V School of Medicine)

We are hearing words that will make the hair stand on the back of the neck:  FORCED STERILIZATION… THE INCOMPETENT or the first use of the word “Moron” (feeble-minded or perhaps mentally ill)

This was what Eugenics was all about…getting rid of the undesirables.  It came in the form of our first emigration policies and restrictions, the mental institutions where many ended up whether they were actually insane or not. It also had to do with racism.   Even the histories of citizens were stored in locked vaults by the government.  These could explain inherited traits and pinpoint those who would be considered “unacceptable”.

Perhaps we should think twice before we give over to any organization our DNA to do with as they like.  Any authority may decide to act upon this greatest of our identity. Genetics Take for instance the controversy of  23andMe, a DNA test group.  

” …23andMe’s Personal Genome Service is much more than a medical device; it is a one-way portal into a world where corporations have access to the innermost contents of your cells and where insurers and pharmaceutical firms and marketers might know more about your body than you know yourself. And as 23andMe warns on its website, “Genetic Information that you share with others could be used against your interests. You should be careful about sharing your Genetic Information with others.”  (Charles Siefe in Scientific America)

One may ask, what about the good parts of having DNA used by the police investigators to find killers or rapists who may have been Cold Cases for years?  Of course, this technology today can be celebrated for bringing the guilty to justice as we heard about recently on 60 Minutes.  However, we must not forget that there are few standards set in the use of DNA and someone who is calling themselves DNA professionals could also make mistakes or prove to be using the knowledge for less than good to an individual…criminal or not. Could these same people be brought in to court as a witness with authority?   Caution may be the best word. How important is your lineage to you?

Under President Wilson, the belief in Eugenics for the nation flourished.  Some of the terms used are everyday words to us today because of the government efforts in years past to make lawful things that we might question today.  The public can be coerced and made from advertisements to think that the government knows best.  That is precisely why we should look at the people we put into office very, very carefully.  Is individual liberty a priority to a candidate…or does he or she thinks that government knows best and can be the solver of all problems?  When would they think, you, the citizen is the problem…for whatever reason.

Shown here is President Wilson, a eugenics sign, and a family that was found to have good lineage…having won a contest as “the best”.

We could go on with many eugenics topics in history: immigration restrictions, unfit individuals, compulsory sterilization, euthanasia programs, fit baby contests and family fitness under eugenics, planned parenthood promotions and how we as a nation promoted racial superiority as did Germany during WWII.

What a nation can do in plain sight can be terrifying if we are looking away or turn a blind eye.  (More information on Eugenics)

Yes, it matters who is in power in your local, state, or national setting. Do your homework. Your human rights are at stake…as in past years and in the future.   See how they have voted in the past that effects your life and more importantly your freedoms.

 Click link:  A video worth watching

“The Eugenics Crusade”   The American Experience  PBS

 


Eternity…What is it?

Eternity is a word without a real meaning.  If we look it up, the closest definition would be something like this:  “…a state to which time has no application; timelessness.”   The simple words would be “forever and forever” which is definitely difficult to understand.

Almost all religions have a belief in an eternity.  Some think that they have to work for it.  Others believe that it is a gift of God, through His Son Jesus Christ.   Another faith thinks that life just begins again and they hope that they will return as a more elevated human and not one of the lowly animals or insects.  The whole concept is so broad and “endless” that the mind cannot comprehend.   The question then is whether we should even be concerned about something in which we do not have a real answer?    I think so. We plan ahead for many things: Our wedding day, our place of residence, our finances, our grave-site…but why not think about the eternal? Somehow I think it should be thoughts of joy instead of foreboding…especially when we have had loved ones who have gone before us.

We know we were born.  We also know that we will all die eventually.  Our love for each other draws a great well of desire to want to see each other again in eternity. Do we have the perfect answer to eternity…no…not in ourselves, but yes, in the Holy Scriptures we have promises.  We are told, “...to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.” (2nd Corinthians 5:8)    That verse alone should give us great hope. We are promised a resurrection of the body, just as Christ was resurrected.  When I decided on cremation after death, my thought was to wonder how all of those dust pieces were going to be put back together.  How juvenile a thought was that!  If He can sling the stars into orbit and match up molecules, He will have no trouble with the resurrection!

 

Pieta by Michelangelo 1499 St Peters Basilica Rom

The Pieta… Mary holds her dead son, Jesus, Who she will see risen from the dead 3 days later.

 

 

As a Christian, I believe in eternity.  It may be hard for an atheist who thinks when one dies it is the end of everything, but I have always felt that if there could possibly be any truth in this belief, I would have lived a happier life because of my own joy in believing in God and the comfort it has given me.  How sad and morbid to believe that there is no one who will enjoy eternity with the Maker of our most glorious universe.  Those who have had a near-death experience recall a wonderful feeling of love.  They speak of seeing someone that appears to be God waiting for them in a bright light.  According to some records, surprisingly, 75% of those thinking they were dying as atheists have told of this same experience.

near death experiences

Representation of a Near-Death Experience   (from Piotr Żabicki/ iStock.com)

 

Recently, I saw a special on the amazing new parts of the universe that have only been identified by the most powerful telescope sent into space.  The most familiar and powerful so far has been the Hubble Space Telescope.  Nevertheless, there is “a new kid” in the making.

hubble_helix-master1050.jpg Eye of God

“The Eye of God” is the planetary nebulae nearest to Earth, extending 2.5 light-years across, making it larger than our entire solar system. ( Hubble Space Telescope)

 

The newest and most powerful telescope is the James Webb Space Telescope.  It is to be the successor to the Hubble telescope and will be launched in 2021.  Here are a few facts concerning the future launching:

 The James Webb Space Telescope will be launched on an Ariane 5 rocket. The launch vehicle is part of the European contribution to the mission. The Ariane 5 is one of the world’s most reliable launch vehicles capable of delivering Webb to its destination in space. The European Space Agency (ESA) has agreed to provide an Ariane 5 launcher and associated launch services to NASA for Webb.  (Nasa)

300px-James_Webb_Space_Telescope_2009_top

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is a space telescope that will be the successor to the Hubble Space Telescope. The JWST will provide greatly improved resolution and sensitivity and will enable a broad range of investigations across the fields of astronomy and cosmology. One of its major goals is observing some of the most distant events and objects in the universe, such as the formation of the first galaxies. These types of targets are beyond the reach of current ground- and space-based instruments. Other goals include understanding the formation of stars and planets, and direct imaging of exoplanets and novas. (Wikipedia)

Why do I digress from writing about eternity to telescopes?  It is with delight that I think those who are experiencing their eternity are having a perfect understanding of the formation of the universe and all there is on other planets. If there is life on other worlds, our loved ones would have the joy of knowing this. (Forget about the Hollywood version of the “little green man with a pointed head.”)

Thinking of the possibilities makes “eternity” seen a little shorter than “forever”…mainly because it would take forever to know all there is to know, which is impossible without the mind of God. Could it be that He will provide His mind for us to know and understand all these glories, that we have only slightly seen through the telescope, and be able to experience the glories for eternity?

(A side-thought:  I can’t imagine that we will be going from planet to planet as on some fast-moving whirlwind because the Scriptures also says that there will be a place of peace.  He promises that the lion will lay down with the lamb. Could that mean that at the Savior’s return to earth that He will also bring those with Him who have died and bring absolute peace onto a new earth? )

And the wolf will dwell with the lamb, and the leopard will lie down with the kid, and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little boy will lead them. Isaiah 11:6 (NASB)

Jesus also prayed a prayer to his Father in Heaven, who made the universe that He wanted us to know the glories of the universe:  “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.”  (John 17:24)

Regardless of what eternity may mean, we will draw our last breath and then we will know it all.  TO GOD BE THE GLORY

VIDEO  (Turn on sound)

 

 


A Deer is a Dear!

Our home in Virginia, USA, is just off the Blue Ridge Parkway.  We have deer strolling throughout our yard at most any time of day.  They are beautiful and besides the fact that they eat our day lilies, we love them!    Here is a picture of the most recent one. We’re not certain why she has a split ear, but she seems healthy enough   Perhaps she got it caught on a barbed wire fence.

We’ve had rabbits, birds and a bear with three cubs during our time here.  It is the deer that are graceful that is truly lovely to watch.

I’m sure that should one of them have a fawn in our yard, as did this man, I would not have the patience to see it through to adulthood…but I thought this video might brighten your day.  It is somewhat lengthy, but it has a good ending…and worth the watch.


Tour of the Space Station…Terrific!

1280px-Sunita_Lyn_Williams_-_Science_City_-_Kolkata_2013-04-02_7515

When we are in Virginia, we receive an email telling us when the Space Station will be flying over our home and the Blue Ridge Mountains.  Because we have no street lights, it is quite clear and the Station can be seen moving on the path above our heads.

The video I’m sharing with my readers today shows a working relationship between the U.S., Russia and Japanese astronauts.  It is a good thing that they are professionals and want to do their work and experiments without political interruption.  Hope you enjoy this as much as I did.

The tour of the Space Station is given by Sunita Pandya Williams, an American astronaut and U.S. Navy officer of Indo-Slovenian descent. She formerly held the records for total spacewalks by a woman (seven) and most spacewalk time for a woman (50 hours, 40 minutes). Sunita was assigned to the International Space Station as a member of Expeditions 14 and 15.  In 2012, she served as a flight engineer on Expedition 32 and then commander of Expedition 33. (Wikipedia)

Sonny Williams1280px-Sunita_Williams_astronaut_spacewalk

Thank you, Sunita Williams, for your great tour. As we watch from the ground, we know better what the crews in the Space Station are experiencing amid the stars. Long live international cooperation!

VIDEO (Turn up sound)


Total Eclipse…Ready or not..It CAME!

total eclipse sun and moon

UPDATE:   THE ECLIPSE CAME AND WENT.  BELOW IS HOW WE IN THE USA PREPARED FOR IT.  THE VIDEO HERE IS HOW ONE TOWN IN NORTH CAROLINA HAD FUN WITH IT.  ENJOY!

 

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Eclipse Preparation:

You may be saying to yourself, “Yes, the total eclipse is an exciting event…but what’s all the commotion about it?”

Well, I thought the same thing until I read an article by space.com.   The practical side of the event was something I had not thought of…so here goes to all my readers who may be faithfully waiting or those who may be caught unawares at the exact moment on August 21st.   If you live in the US and miss this event, you’ll have to wait 7 more years, until April 8, 2024, to see a total solar eclipse from a location in the contiguous United States.

If you are lucky to live between Oregon and South Carolina this year, you will be viewing the eclipse in the most narrow path of the totality.  Others in the U.S and outside the U.S will still have a view, but only a partial eclipse.

total eclipse

Here are some things that I learned from the article mentioned:

  • There will be big traffic jams heading toward the most direct path in the U.S.A…perhaps millions of visitors from all over the world.   We know what a minor accident on an interstate can do to your wait time.  Should you be out in traffic (not advised… if possible stay put) at the moment of the eclipse, you may need the following because of traffic:  FULL tank of gas, snacks, something to entertain children (and don’t forget they need eye protection when watching) etc. etc. 

 

  • You need SPECIAL, APPROVED GLASSES to view the eclipse. ..or you may cause great damage or blindness to your eyes.   Not all glasses will help you…certainly not regular sun glasses.  They must meet the ISO 12312-2 international safety standard. 

 

  •  If you are looking for the approved standard and not a fake,  “Purchase a pair from one of the manufacturers or vendors that have been approved by the American Astronomical Society.” They must be rated 14 or higher.  This includes any sales online.  (Click here to see the vendors)     (We plan to buy ours from Lowe’s Hardware since Lowes is practically my husband’s second home.)

Link:    Here is how you can tell if your glasses are safe. 

This is a list of times that you can see the total eclipse in its duration on August 21…that is if you live in these cities in the U.S.A.   (for 100 cities across the USA) 

Location Partial Eclipse Begins Sun Completely Obscured
Salem, OR 09:05 am PDT 10:18 am PDT
Idaho Falls, ID 10:15 am MDT 11:33 am MDT
Casper, WY 10:22 am MDT 11:43 am MDT
Lincoln, NE 11:37 am CDT 1:03 pm CDT
Sabetha, KS 11:38 am CDT 1:05 pm CDT
Jefferson City, MO 11:46 am CDT 1:14 pm CDT
Carbondale, IL 11:52 am CDT 1:21 pm CDT
Hopkinsville, KY 11:56 am CDT 1:25 pm CDT
Nashville, TN 11:58 am CDT 1:28 pm CDT
Talulah Falls, GA 1:07 pm EDT 2:37 pm EDT
Columbia, SC 1:13 pm EDT 2:43 pm EDT
Charleston, SC 1:16 pm EDT 2:47 pm EDT

Please note that this list includes only a small selection of locations where the total eclipse will be visible. You can look up more locations in our Eclipse Database or via the Eclipse Map.

total eclipse 2

You may want to gather your children or grandchildren around your computer and explain exactly what is happening when a total eclipse occurs.  Throughout the centuries the ignorance and lack of understanding science caused many fears and tales of dome and hysteria.   A blogger acquaintance of mine in England has written an interesting blog on this subject. ( See Stephen Liddell’s blog )

HAPPY VIEWING to ALL  from Boyer Writes

Video showing pattern world wide..click the lower arrow if doesn’t start.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


And God said, “Let there be…”

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God’s plan for creation is more than the mind can handle. That is because we do not have the mind of God.  Only the Holy Scriptures explains it for us…at least to some degree.  We were wonderfully made…every tiny part….as is the universe in its vastness.

Notice that the words below says that after the creation of man and woman, “He blessed them.”  We really have no idea how much we are blessed and how grateful we should be. As we leave this life and depart to the great beyond there will more than enough to be shown to us for eternity.

If you have had someone you love pass away, as I have, it is comforting to think of them being shown by God the Father and the Son the secrets of the universe. How wonderful and exciting that must be.  ( See video at the end for the full meaning of this blog.)

 The Holy Scriptures    Genesis 1:3 -31

  • Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.
  • God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness.
  • God called the light day, and the darkness He called night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.
  • Then God said, “Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.”
  • God made the expanse, and separated the waters which were below the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so.
  • God called the expanse heaven. And there was evening and there was morning, a second day.
  • Then God said, “Let the waters below the heavens be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear”; and it was so.
  • God called the dry land earth, and the gathering of the waters He called seas; and God saw that it was good.
  • Then God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them”; and it was so.
  • The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed after their kind, and trees bearing fruit with seed in them, after their kind; and God saw that it was good.
  • There was evening and there was morning, a third day.
  • Then God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years;
  • and let them be for lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth”; and it was so.
  • God made the two great lights, the greater light to govern the day, and the lesser light to govern the night; He made the stars also.
  • God placed them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth,
  • and to govern the day and the night, and to separate the light from the darkness; and God saw that it was good.
  • There was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.
  • Then God said, “Let the waters teem with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth in the open expanse of the heavens.”
  • God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarmed after their kind, and every winged bird after its kind; and God saw that it was good.
  • God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.”
  • There was evening and there was morning, a fifth day.
  • Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind: cattle and creeping things and beasts of the earth after their kind”; and it was so.
  • God made the beasts of the earth after their kind, and the cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps on the ground after its kind; and God saw that it was good.
  • Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
  • God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
  • God blessed them; and God said to them, “ Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
  • Then God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you;
  • and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food”; and it was so.
  • God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.”

VIEW VIDEO and be AMAZED  (turn sound low and click off of any advertisements that pop up on video. Unfortunate that you will see them.)

 


Meteor Showers due! Look to the skies

From July until August 23, 2016 the heavens will show the Glory of God.  Don’t miss it.  (Pictures of the meteor showers of 2013 are shown here.)

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  •  It may be time to direct our thoughts and eyes toward the heavens and away from our phones and televisions.  August 12, 2016 should be the best date when most meteors are visible.   You are advised that sometime between 11pm and midnight is the best time and give your eyes about 30 minutes to adjust.   Look toward the northeast.    Meteor Shower..How to See.
  • The glories of the heavens are beyond description.   The music of Haydn’s  The Heavens Are Telling the Glory of God gives us two joys….sight and sound!

 

 


We were Meant to Soar

Many of my readers have been watching the hatching of baby eagles in Washington, D.C.  They were little fuzz balls.  Now they are teenagers.  Oh, such an awkward age!  Not so cute anymore as they were when they peeked out from under the parent eagle’s feathers.

eagles growing

© 2016 American Eagle Foundation, EAGLES.ORG

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We know that if the parent eagles do not teach the little ones the lesson of soaring, they will forever act like a chicken, groveling in the dirt…never becoming what God intended for them to be.  This is the lesson of life that all of us must learn…that we were meant to soar and so were our off-spring.

Once we have been liberated from a life of dependency, it is up to us how we spend the next years.  The lesson that the parent eagles give to their young is one of “tough love”.  The lesson is for the young eagles to learn what it feels like to be lacking in order to become independent.  The parent eagles may  soar around a nest with  food  that they, themselves had hard-earned through their own efforts. As cruel as it seems, they often do not offer any of it to their young, who are calling from the nest.

No, there are no cellphone connections to the lake where they were catching fish. “Mom (or Dad), can you loan me a few dollars? I’m really hungry up here.” No, the adult eagles don’t respond to such cries for they know that their little eaglets were meant to eventually fly on their own and find their own food…to glide and soar in the beautiful blue skies…to dive for their own fish or prey.  They had to be taught and it seems that God has put into their existence the need to pass this lesson on to their growing eagles. (It appears that our Washington Eagles may be at this stage for there is no food in the nest as there used to be.)

We in the human world find these lessons hard to teach.   Withholding is very difficult for us as parents. If withholding was never in the “academy of life’s lessons”, dependency would always be the way of life, as it would be for the eagles.   It may be hard, but teaching young ones to soar will have its own rewards.  That is because “We were Meant to Soar.”

The lives of eagles can teach us some important principles.

Explanation: The video below has some information that may be more of a myth than the truth.  Below video is a link explaining the actual life or rebirth of an eagle.  However, the video is a good comparison to life.  (If the reading is too quick, put it on pause for a few seconds until continuing.)

Click to   Watch the Washington Eagles

Explanation about rebirth of the eagle      2nd explanation

 

 


God’s Wonderful World …Visual delight for Sunday

Nothing can improve on the beauty of the earth and the creatures God has made.  Relax and enjoy on this Sunday morning.

Enlarge screen for this excellent video by National Geographic


A Fascination with Birds….from USA to Mongolia

 

Florida Bald Eagle by N.Boyer

Florida Bald Eagle by N.Boyer

The walls of my home have enlarged photographs of the birds native to my area in Florida.  There is the Osprey, the Cranes, the Hawks, and most recently a Florida Bald Eagle shown here sitting quietly in my neighbor’s  pine tree.

When I was fortunate enough to be teaching English in Mongolia, I heard of the Golden Eagles that were used for hunting.  I did not see any in action on either of my trips, but a friend of mine sent an article about an amazing 13-year-old girl who is now joining the young boys and men who hunt with eagles in Mongolia.   I found this fascinating as this young girl, who now has a laptop and knows how to email,  also knows how to scale the mountains through the snow and hunt with her eagle.

William Kremer of BBC Magazine wrote this about her:

“Most children, Asher Svidensky says, are a little intimidated by golden eagles. Kazakh boys in western Mongolia start learning how to use the huge birds to hunt for foxes and hares at the age of 13, when the eagles sit heavily on their undeveloped arms. Svidensky, a photographer and travel writer, shot five boys learning the skill as well as the girl, Ashol-Pan. “To see her with the eagle was amazing,” he recalls. “She was a lot more comfortable with it, a lot more powerful with it and a lot more at ease with it.”

The Kazakhs of the Altai mountain range in western Mongolia are the only people who hunt with golden eagles, and today there are around 400 practicing falconers. Ashol-Pan, the daughter of a particularly celebrated hunter, may well be the country’s only apprentice huntress…”

Mongolia has a yearly Eagle Festival when the hunters bring their eagles and show what they can do. I am certain that this young lady will be a part of the all male group very soon.  Here are a few of the other pictures photographed by Asher Sydensky.

Mongolian Bahak BirgenIrka Bolen

Enjoy the video below on the history of the Eagle Hunters of Mongolia


Giving Thanks for Medical Care and…..The Miracle of Preserving a Life

This week we are giving thanks for many things that we have in life. Recently I saw a video…just 5 minutes long…photographed by Ward Miles’ father who is also giving thanks to God and to the marvelous medical care we have here in America.  Ward Miles pre-mature

Little Ward was born  over 3 months early.  One can only marvel at the many tubes and care that was  keeping him alive.   The care of nurses and doctors…and the love of parents…all brought this little boy… not only into the world of the living, but thriving by his first birthday.

This is what his father had to say about Ward Miles and his first year.

“This video sums up my son’s first year. He was born way too early, and the obstacles he had to overcome were really big, but not bigger than our God.
This is a story of a mother’s love for her baby.
A year ago from this Halloween he came home. I made this video to commemorate his first year and how far he has come. Today happens to be his mother’s birthday… so I made this as a gift to her.
I want to thank all the doctors, nurses, and staff all over the world that make it their life’s mission to help babies get better! It’s because of you that my son ever stood a chance to make it home!”

I share with you now, the MIRACLE OF LIFE from Mail OnLine with pictures and video.     (Benjamin Miller, the father of Ward Miles, is a photographer that works under the name Benjamin Scot.  Pictures shown are made by him.)  Click on Tribute to Mother and Child.

 

Benjamin Miller and his wife, Lindsey, with their baby.

Benjamin Miller and his wife, Lindsey, with their baby.

VIDEO TRIBUTE TO MOTHER AND CHILD


For this Sunday… a SUPER MOON

"Supermoon" rises behind the Temple of Poseidon in Cape Sounion, Greece

“Supermoon” rises behind the Temple of Poseidon in Cape Sounion, Greece

This weekend  you will be able to see a super moon.   What exactly is a super moon and how often can you see it?

FACTS ABOUT THE SUPER MOON:   

According to Bruce McClure and Deborah Byrd of earthsky.com  “…a new or full moon which occurs with the moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit (perigee). In short, Earth, moon and sun are all in a line, with moon in its nearest approach to Earth.”

The super moon will appear up to 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than a normal moon. The wolves will be howling and the sky bright during the Super moon, when the lunar orbit is closest to the Earth.”

LIVE WEBCAST.…if you can’t see it from where you are.

If you are interested in watching live webcast of the super moon  on Sunday beginning at 9 p.m. EDT (0100 June 24 GMT), courtesy of the online Slooh Space Camera, an online sky watching website.    Simply click here     (http://www.slooh.com).

Here are a few pictures that I took on Saturday from my home in Florida…after a rain had just passed through.   There it was…the Super Moon! (pictures below)

PS….Tonight, Sunday,  I was down by the lake waiting for the next great show of the Super Moon….when along floated a big one…perhaps out to watch the moon as well.   Just had to share his picture even though it was getting pretty dark.  Thought I better go back to the house to watch the live webcast…..not that I was afraid of a 10 foot gator or anything…even though they can run 30 miles per hour and can be aggressive when they are looking for a mate.   Just adds to the drama of the night!

IMG_1270IMG_1269

IMG_1231smIMG_1234sm

SUPER MOON 2013

SUPER MOON 2013


Birds…Animals…Do They Wonder about Us?

One of my passions is photography…and wildlife…as well as wetlands photography when I can find a cooperative model or an interesting, untouched part of Florida wetlands.   I am always in the frame of mind to find evasive creatures ….bring them in a  lens up-close…and making them  quite large when producing on canvas or paper.

  My living room has two pictures of birds that flew into my trees:

  • An osprey with huge claws

    Florida Osprey Claws

    Florida Osprey Claws

  •  A hawk with a blue claws and beak.

 Because we are not able to examine birds in real life up-close, I did not know they were blue until it was reproduced in color on canvas. 

.hawk blue bealhawk blue claws

It was the morning that a bird came calling on me that made me wonder if they are as curious about us as we are about them?

  I was at my computer and heard a really loud tapping sound.  Looking at the direction the noise was coming….I saw him ….and he was looking at me!    (Where is the camera when you need it!!!)

Carefully, I got up and moved by the window….he flew.   It always happens.    I went to the other room; got the camera and on returning….he had come back….once again tapping as if to say,  “Hey, I’m Woody Woodpecker…come to see you…where did you go?”

There was a screen on the window and I knew, in photographing him, he would not be as clear as I wanted him to be.    Who cares….this was up-close and personal!  Not everyday do we get a visiting bird!

Click…click…and click again.   His red head was gleaming in the light.  My visitor was a Pileated Woodpecker…large…and beautiful.  (The Pileated Woodpecker is a very large North American woodpecker, roughly crow-sized, inhabiting deciduous forests in eastern North America.    Scientific Name is Dryocopus pileatus)

woodpecker clup

Was he really curious about my writing or why I was practically up in the tree tops in my second story window?    Probably not, but I doubt that I will get such a visit again.   One fuzzy shot was better than nothing to remember this special moment.

Hi!   I'm Woody...may I come in?

Hi! I’m Woody…may I come in?

Yes, Woody was clever, cute and a little bit of a “devil”     Enjoy!


Florida Orange Juice Industry

Ahh…the beautiful orange!    I can walk outside my door here in Florida and there they are…first a small white blossom that smells so heavenly.  The bees buzz everywhere.   The lovely white blossom turns to a small orange that continues to grow slowly…oh so slowly until they are ready to be picked and juiced.   I have to admit that my husband is better at juicing than I am.  We both love our orange juice for breakfast…or any time.

Not only is orange juice healthy and a great source of vitamin C, but so great in Florida’s warm weather.  While I am taking a look at our Florida history, let’s look at the orange juice industry and find out what it takes to get that orange juice to your table.   Have a glass of golden, delicious….oh so refreshing orange juice!

Click on video below:


A Dinasour’s Near Auction Miss

IT’S A MYSTERY!     How did a dinosaur that was in Mongolia travel first to England…then to Gainesville, Florida….and on to an auction house in New York?

Mongolian Museum of Natural History

For all of you mystery buffs, you may want to keep track of this one.   At present a judge has ruled that the sale shown below is on hold until the country of origin of the bones be found.   Thankfully there were some alert people who brought this auction sale into question even as it was being sold for a large sum  by phone.  (or maybe not so large if one gives thought to all the available dinosaurs for sale!)

Mongolia is saying it belongs to them and is not for sale.   They have strict laws about any antiquity leaving the country.  While I was in Mongolia, I had to have paperwork showing that a small snuff bottle was allowed to leave the country.

Mongolia is a very small country with great pride.  They have a museum that displays some of the more recent finds in the Gobi Desert since their independence from Russia.  One can make the rounds of the museums: art, history, and natural sciences in less than a day.  There must have been some real money flashing and some strings pulled to get this priceless piece of history out of the country.  (As the country of Mongolia has just this past week had its presidential election and large deposits of  copper and gold have been found near its border with China, corruption is on the minds of everyone.  There is great wealth under the sands what used to be nothing more than the vast Gobi Desert.  This also includes the bones of dinosaurs.)    It will be interesting to see if this one  finds its rightful place back home at the Mongolian museum.   (For more reading, see the article below and the one from the New York times.)

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Tyrannosaurus Brings $1,052,500 At New York Event

NEW YORK – One of the great dinosaurs of the Cretaceous era, an eight-foot tall, 24-foot long, 75% complete Tyrannosaurus bataar – the slightly smaller Asian counterpart to the legendary North American T-Rex – has sold for $1,052,500, contingent upon resolution of a Texas state court proceeding. Heritage Auctions sold this dinosaur on May 20 as part of the company’s Natural History auction at Center 548 (548 W. 22nd Street, between 10th Ave. and West Street). The entire auction realized $2.63 million, not counting post-auction sales, which are still in progress.

“This is a once in a generation dinosaur and collectors definitely responded to both its rarity and its fierce beauty,” said David Herskowitz, Director of Natural History at Heritage Auctions. “A dino like this is rare to come across in any condition, let alone one as pristine as this.”

The sale – marking the first time a fully prepared Tyrannosaur has been made available at public auction (“Sue” the T-Rex was sold in 1996, but was still in field jackets) – was not without controversy, as the Mongolian government released a statement 48 hours before the auction suggesting the fossil belonged to the country.

“We respect the various opinions on the subject and wish to protect the legal rights of all parties involved,” said Greg Rohan, President of Heritage Auctions. “We have legal assurances from our reputable consignors that the specimen was obtained legally. As far as we know, the Mongolian government has not produced any evidence that the piece originated in its territory, but the final determination will be up to the American legal system.”

The proceedings were not without event, however, as Mongolia’s Texas-based attorney, without authority from the New York judicial system, tried to interrupt the auction.

The Tyrannosaurus bataar roamed what is now Central Asia in the Cretaceous period, around 80 million years ago. The dino had been in storage in England, still in its field jackets, until it was brought to the United States last year.

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Sale of $1 Million Dinosaur Skeleton Is Halted After Origin Questioned

By
Published: June 19, 2012

An international legal dispute over a dinosaur skeleton sprouted last month from an innocent stack of mail at the American Museum of Natural History.

U.S Attorney Office for the Southern District of New York, via Associated Press

The government of Mongolia says that this Tyrannosaurus bataar is its property and should be returned.

Mark A. Norell, who heads the museum’s paleontology division, was flipping through letters and packages in his office atop one of the museum’s turrets when he noticed an alarming curiosity in a catalog of scheduled auctions in Manhattan: a perfectly assembled Tyrannosaurus bataar skeleton.

Mr. Norell believed there was almost no chance that the 24-foot-long, 8-foot-tall fossil had been legally removed from Mongolia, the only country where that type has been found. On May 17, three days before the auction, he wrote an open letter that was posted to listservs frequented by paleontologists.

“As someone who is intimately familiar with these faunas, these specimens were undoubtedly looted from Mongolia,” the letter said.

Thus began a whirlwind tale that came to involve the president of Mongolia; a lawyer in Houston; paleontologists and the United States attorney in Manhattan, Preet Bharara, who on Monday filed a civil complaint seeking forfeiture of the skeleton and requesting its return to Mongolia.

The chaos surrounding Lot 49315 at a building called Center 548 in Chelsea was certainly uncommon, and not only because the item in question was not a painting, but an “incredible, complete skeleton, painstakingly excavated and prepared,” according to the catalog from Heritage Auctions.

The catalog led Mr. Norell to compose his letter, which landed on the desk of Tsakhia Elbegdorj, the president of Mongolia. The remains for Tyrannosaurus bataar, which lived 70 million years ago, were first discovered in 1946 during a joint Soviet-Mongolian expedition to the Gobi Desert. Under Mongolian law, fossils are the property of its government and are illegal to export.

President Elbegdorj was familiar with a Houston lawyer, Robert Painter, and called late Friday asking for help.

The next morning, Mr. Painter, who had met the president while representing United States investors in Mongolian mining ventures, found a federal judge in Texas to sign a temporary restraining order at his house on May 19, a Saturday morning.

Mr. Painter said he sent the order electronically to Heritage and then flew to New York to make sure the auction did not proceed. He worried that once the fossil was sold, it would disappear forever.

He arrived to find the fossil being showcased in the auction room.

“The auctioneer said the sale would proceed contingent on the outcome of a court case,” Mr. Painter said in an interview.

Mr. Painter said he called the judge, Carlos Cortez, on his cellphone.

“I stood up, raised my cellphone, and said, ‘I have the judge, and he’s ready to explain to you how this violates the court’s order,’ ” Mr. Painter said.

Mr. Painter said that he was politely ushered to the side of the room and that the auction proceeded. The fossil was purchased by an anonymous buyer, via telephone, for $1,052,500.

The next day, Heritage agreed to halt the sale pending the outcome of an investigation.

The federal civil complaint says that the fossil had been imported from Great Britain to Gainesville, Fla., in March 2010 by a company owned by a man who describes himself as a “commercial paleontologist.” The complaint says that documents presented to customs officials misstated the skeleton’s country of origin as Great Britain, misstated its value as $15,000, and incorrectly described the bones.

A spokesman for Heritage Auctions issued a brief statement from Jim Halperin, the company’s co-chairman, saying it believed that the seller had “purchased fossils in good faith, then spent a year of his life and considerable expense identifying, restoring, mounting and preparing” the skeleton.

Since the auction, the skeleton has been housed in an art storage site in the city. On Tuesday a federal judge in Manhattan, P. Kevin Castel, signed an order for federal law enforcement officers to take the skeleton into custody, Mr. Painter said.

The federal complaint also mentions the opinion of Mr. Norell and Philip Currie, a professor of dinosaur paleobiology at the University of Alberta, that the skeleton had been removed from Mongolia by poachers within the last decade. The skeleton was missing claws, toes and teeth, which are prime targets of poachers, and the fresh breaks of bones indicate it had been removed in recent years, they found.

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IT’S A MYSTERY!   If you are a real mystery snoop and read more updates about this investigation, let Boyer Writes know.  We love a mystery…but more than that we don’t like small, growing countries, that have endured much and have finally thrown over communism being taken advantage of...should this be the case.   Our thanks to Khogjmiin Duureg for pointing this out to us.

 

 

 

 

 

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AN INDEPENDENCE DAY TRIBUTE

On the night of 12 year old Cody Green’s death, a marine stood outside his room the entire night. Cody loved the Marine Corp. This 4th of July Boyer Writes remembers all those in our services who care and who stand for freedom and honor.

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Fascinating Places: Mauna Kea Observatories and Hubble Ultra Deep Field

Want to feel very,.  very…very small?      Most people do not have the privilege of visiting or researching at the  observatories on the high mountain top of Mauna Kea, Hawaii, USA. This distant place  rises to an altitude of 13,600 feet.   It is the largest astronomical facility in the world.

“It is operated by the Institute for Astronomy of the Univ. of Hawaii. The largest telescopes are the 33-ft (10-m) W. M. Keck telescopes (Keck I and II), each consisting of an array of 36 segmented mirrors; a computer adjusts each small mirror many times per second so that a single image is formed of the object under study.

Keck I began observations in 1993, Keck II in 1996. The Subaru telescope, featuring a 327-in. (8.3-m) one-piece mirror, was formerly called the Japanese National Large Telescope. The 320-in. (8.1-m) Gemini telescope is one of an identical pair, the other being constructed atop  Chile’s  Cerro Pachon. Together they will provide complete unobstructed optical and infrared coverage of both the northern and southern skies. Other instruments include the Canada-France-Hawaii telescope (142 in./3.6 m), the United Kingdom Infrared telescope (150 in./3.8 m), and the Infrared Telescope Facility (120 in./3 m), as well as two telescopes—the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory and the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope—used for observations in the submillimeter portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. Also part of the complex is the Hawaii Antenna of the Very Long Baseline Array, which is used for observations in radio astronomy .”

“Mauna Kea Observatories.” The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. 2011. Retrieved April 18, 2012 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1E1-MaunaKeaO.html


As you may remember,  NASA launched its final mission to the HST to perform an upgrade before NASA would be closed. During this  mission, the astronauts replaced several key instruments with brand new ones, making it an essentially brand new telescope.  How sad it is that our astronauts will not have this privilege again without the help of some other country.  I will miss the times I ran out into my yard to see the lift off here in Florida.    Nevertheless, scientists, I am certain, will still be working at the observatories like Mauna Kea to find more mysteries to the universe that our Maker has created.

Who was the man that brought so much information to us and for whom the greatest telescope in history was named?  Edwin Hubble  

The Hubble Space Telescope was named after the American astronomer Edwin Powell Hubble (1889–1953), who made some of the most important discoveries in modern astronomy. As an astronomer, Dr. Hubble was a late bloomer. He had promised his father that he would study law instead of science, which he never practiced.  His education took him from the University of Chicago to Queen’s College, Oxford. He was a high school teacher and coach; finally receiving his PhD after he had served in the U. S. Army during World War I.

“In the 1920s, while working at the Mt. Wilson Observatory with the most advanced technology of the time, Dr. Hubble showed that some of the numerous distant, faint clouds of light in the universe were actually entire galaxies—much like our own Milky Way. The realization that the Milky Way is only one of many galaxies forever changed the way astronomers viewed our place in the universe.But perhaps his greatest discovery came in 1929, when Dr. Hubble determined that the farther a galaxy is from Earth, the faster it appears to move away. ”

Below is a video of    The Hubble and  history of the Ultra Deep Field. 

Click to view with sound.


5th writing of Lent “Terrified…when you really think about it!”

Job took a hard look at the God he trusted.   He said, ” …the Almighty has terrified me…”   He was probably speaking of the harsh treatment to his body and life that he was enduring.   Whatever he was feeling , he tried to explain to his accusers why he still trusted even though he was suffering more than he thought he could endure.

When his “friends” had left for the day after much talking and accusing, he may have felt completely overwhelmed. He may have felt very small and ever alone. There may have been moments when he considered where he fit in to earth and the universe that God had made.   There was no understanding.  He says in chapter 23:17, “If only I could vanish in darkness, and think darkness would cover my face.”    To go to sleep and never wake up may be what he meant.

Nevertheless, Job knows the power of God.   (Chapter 26):

  • “…hangs the earth upon nothing.”
  • “…covers the face of the full moon.”
  • “..describes a circle on the face of the waters.”
  • “…heaven tremble and are astounded at His rebuke.”
  • “By His power He stilled the sea…”
  • “...But the thunder of His power who can understand?”

The creation of everything, including man/woman…the earth…planets and the universe is something to contemplate this season of Lent.

Just start where you are sitting at your computer; let your mind go out…to the neighborhood…the country side around you…the whole of your country…the earth…and then further….into the universe….as far as you can go in your imagination.  Then bring your mind back and go the other direction…into the deepest parts of the sea.   If we  consider everything about God and His creation... we, like Job,  should be terrified, when one really thinks about it.

Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson was interviewed by Time magazine on what he considered to be the most astounding fact to considered about life.  He does not mention God, but I am certain Job would have.

Video (turn on sound)

The Most Astounding Fact from Max Schlickenmeyer on Vimeo.


The Hubble and a Milestone for Boyer Writes

Photographed by Hubble

October, 2009 was the first day I began a blog that was to be called simply, Boyer Writes.    This October, 2011 is the beginning of  three  years and my stats tell me that over 17,000 people from around the world  have logged on Boyer Writes either out of curiosity or to seriously read.   (Update to this blog:  It is now 2017 and many words later and more followers, I continue to write…and love it!)

My idea was categories that were educational and  varied.     Music, the Arts, History, Cultures, and perhaps most of all… Inspirational was my goal.    It would not fit everyone’s taste.   It would not matter if people liked it or not.  I did not put a lot of stock in whether people responded to the writings.   However, I did find that the favorable emails and comments helped spur me on to more creativity.   People began sending me videos and thoughts to share along with my words.  A thank you to all those who knew I would love what you sent.   Often I tried to incorporate them where it was appropriate.  Sometimes, especially when it was political or not in the best of taste, my discretion seemed to whisper, ”  This is not what Boyer Writes is all about.”

I  often get up in the middle of the night with a thought that just won’t go away.  I write and my husband says the next morning,  ” You were up again…weren’t you?”

Yes, I was up again and sometimes I pray over the words and sometimes I just laugh. As a Christian, I believe that  the sleepless hour is the time that the Spirit of God comes and says,  “I can finally get your attention.  I have a thought for you.  Get it before it is gone and just write!”

To be able to express one’s self is a joy that brings a type of contentment.    The nice thing about sending out the Boyer Writes notices that another writing is on the way,  is that a person has the option to read or not to read.   I have the option to write or not to write.   Isn’t freedom of choice a great thing?

Is anything I write earth shattering or just “out of this universe” ?  Of course not, but I am an educator and once an educator…perhaps always an educator.   I think maybe I have something in common with the Hubble telescope.    You ask,  “How can that be?”

  • I feel that I have a mission.   Hubble  was sent out with a mission.  It was to explore the universe  and return  information and pictures. It had the ability to see where no man had seen.
  • I believe I am being sent out through cyberspace to a world that I do not know.  I think people sit down to their computer to explore.  They are looking  for something to read that will be meaningful.
  • The scientists who developed Hubble had to use trial and error, researching how to make this telescope that would bring a window to the universe back to the world.  I also  found in my writing that I had to research and even more so, to rewrite. I learned  how to dig for the details of a subject; to be as correct as possible.
  • Revision is important in any project.  Technology  is no different.   There was a time when Hubble’s pictures did not show images clearly, being somewhat  fuzzy. How easy it is to be unclear…but revision is possible if one works at it.     After astronauts were sent to add better equipment to Hubble, focus was made correct and it was relaying a stunning universe to the earth as it was intended.      It is clarity that I hope for and the inspiration that I long for.
  • Hubble helped scientists look at  Black Holes that are  star devouring parts of the universe. Sometimes, I, too, find   I have a  black hole within my life that made it difficult to write.   This dark place for me  has been  the loss of a  relationship with a son and  the death of my mother.   The writings  almost came to a halt because I felt  swallowed up by these events. Nevertheless, I  know that these black holes bring me better understanding of things my readers may be experiencing.  It was just a matter of “climbing back on the bicycle” and going once more.   Life does not stand still and neither does the universe.   New stars are being born…the comets speed to their destination and the planets make their orbits.
  • Hubble lets us know more about our sun, the planets, and the galaxies.    I simply want to know more…period.

How small a speck are we in the great scheme of things.  I wonder at the universe.  Are there beings fighting out there like we are on the earth?    Are there greater beauties that our eyes have never seen?   Are there places where God will eventually show us?    Are our loved ones, who are no longer here, experiencing this even now?

Some speculate that there will be the  greatest of sun flares in 2012 and that a large unknown object is rushing toward the earth…moving at terrific speeds.  As it goes by us , all the continents will collide leaving mass destruction!   Well, that should make us all want to get out of the bed in the morning.

Do I understand astronomy or astrophysics?    No, but I understand that the universe has been wonderfully made  and even though I am only a tiny part of it… I am part.  Whatever ability I have, I want to continue to develop.

Perhaps after more than two hundred writings, I will have made some difference to those who read and contemplate.  Does Boyer Writes have an impact like others…the famous writers of history or in the 21st century?   I would say, ” Of course not!”   Does that matter?  No, if only one person has enjoyed these writings and looks forward to what may be next, it is all that I can expect.  It is like looking up in the sky to the millions of stars.   Once in a while, we focus on a small one and find it interesting.

  •  Hubble and I will finally  run our courses.    A new telescope, the James Webb telescope, will be looking at our universe with new eyes in 2014  if our government supports it.   Somewhere out there,  people will decide to begin a blog because they believe  that it can make a difference…if only to themselves.  They may help people look at things with new eyes.

In the mean time, I will roll out of bed, get a snack, and start writing toward  another milestone.  That is, unless a sun flare happens.

Thanks for being my reader.     Nancy Boyer


Desert Walls

Sand storm moves in like a great wall

We have just returned from the retirement service of our friend, Commander Michael Shockley who has served over thirty years as a chaplain with the Navy, Marines, and Special Forces.

My husband, also a retired Navy Chaplain,  was the guest speaker.  The ceremony with the Side Boys (honor guard) and the shrill  Boatswain’s Pipe (“Bosun’s)  with the call of  “Going Ashore” for the last time  was quite impressive.  There was a presentation of a shadow box showing his medals of service including the military’s high honor of Meritorious Service and the Bronze Star.   It was a proud moment for him and his family, who had waited at home during many of his deployments.  Congratulations, Commander Shockley, for a job well done.

As the pictures of  Commander Shockley’s life as a chaplain were shown on a large screen in the church, I took special note of the shots of his time in Afghanistan and Iraq.   Some of them were almost invisible because of the desert sand in the air.    My thoughts  were of  how difficult breathing would be in this environment. Some say it is  “Stinging, blinding, dark, dirty”.   Only those who have experienced it, will know.  Even our war in the Middle East was called “Desert Storm

Wall of Sand in Iraq

This led me to research what the Desert Wall ( or wall of sand) is like.   I remember flying over the Gobi Desert twice when I went to Mongolia as an educator and missionary.  It is a foreboding sight with miles of golden layers.     “NOT a place to land a plane!” ran through my mind.

This  satellite photograph was shot over the Taklamakan Desert in China  on April 29, 2011.  The size of this sand storm is gigantic. The dust is thick enough to completely hide the desert floor.

Desert Sand-storm over China NASA image

The Taklamakan Desert of China sits in the Tarim Basin, between the mountain ranges of
the  Tian Shan in the north and the Kunlun Shan in the south. The Taklamakan is China’s largest and hottest desert.

Breathing is not the only problem for humans on our planet.   The great sand storms also are a cause of  what is called desertization.   This is the movement, or creeping, of the desert into areas that are inhabited or are fertile.   This is bad news for it may affect over 140 nations of the world.    A  third of the world’s population is adjacent to desert areas.  This includes   sub-Saharan Africa, China, and central Asian countries, which could eventually be displaced by the sand’s migration into their land, destroying farmland and other habitats.

It is hard for those of us in Florida to imagine these problems as we see our lush, green foliage and enjoy inches of refreshing rain in just hours.   The residents of Phoenix, Arizona experienced the great wall of sand  just this month.   (See video of this below) The people of America  experienced the great Dust Bowl of the 1930’s   (Coming in a future writing)

For the most part, nature is uncontrollable.   We know this when the hurricanes hit our shores or the great tornadoes roll over the land.  What we do know is ” Our lives and the earth are fragile…handle  with care and with prayer”.

View a video of  a dust storm experience. Turn off the sound if you’d rather not hear the strange music.       Time lapse in Phoenix, July 5, 2011


Easter’s Fresh, New Earth and the Promise of Life

Seasons come and go.  We shiver in the cold and wait for the Spring.  The buds begin to appear in a fresh color of green, like the crisp stalks of celery green.   We are the earth and we have been given promises by its Creator. 

Set in the universe, we here on earth see this  fresh, new life stirring.  Earth  is our home.  The breezes blow and the old leaves  fall off the trees.  The birds fly north again and the young are born.  What is life and what are those promises?

Just this week, I grabbed my camera and went out to peek at a nest that was being built  in the folds of a bush.   Carefully I pulled the small branch back and there it was.   A nest  had been carefully woven and  two small eggs were  inside.    Just as quickly I heard the sound.   It was a mother Cardinal sitting close on the fence, chirping that I was too close to her miracle that would soon happen.   Just as suddenly a bright, red male flies up to watch.   This nest was theirs and they wanted to protect it.  They had no promises that the nest would be safe or would last forever. Just last year a snake had crawled into a nest under another bush in our yard and had eaten the eggs so full of hope, beauty and promise. 

The earth is ours. We too need to protect it.    With all that we have to enjoy…from the powerful volcano; the oceans brimming with life; the birds of the air; the animals on the land….and the green that comes to us in this season of Spring, we see that earth has a new life and a resurrection.

For the Christian, the earth is a reflection of that Divine Life that was raised from the dead. Jesus, our Saviour came  to give the promise of new life and the promise of an after-life.  He brings us a spiritual newness, just as Spring brings new life to the earth.    His promise is  that old things will pass away and all becomes new.

May you be blessed this Easter season by the goodness of God.  Raise your eyes and look around  at the fresh green leaf and the renewing of the earth.  It is waiting for you with life and promises that will bring you peace and a hope.

  See the Holy Scriptures below the video.   Turn on sound and enlarge screen for best viewing. 

The Holy Scriptures:  Words of Life for our Comfort

John 1:4 In Him was life, and that life was the light of men.


John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.


John 5:21 For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom he is pleased to give it.


John 5:26 For as the Father has life in Himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in Himself.


John 6:39 And this is the will of Him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all that He has given me, but raise them up at the last day.


John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.


Colossians 3:4 When Christ, Who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.


Revelation 1:18 I am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever!


Our Glorious Moon

 

Earth’s Moon by NASA

My husband and I took our dog, Gracie, and walked by the lake to observe the Super Moon on Saturday, March 19.  It slowly rose in all it’s glory on the horizon….bright orange with a ripple of color over the water.  This night the Moon was a Super Moon.

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Scientists tell us why it was such a bright moon…and so large.

  • “The “Super Moon” will pass by Earth at a distance of 221,567 miles – the closest pass in 18 years . It is known as lunar perigee and a normal lunar perigee averaging a distance of 226,425 miles  happens once every orbital period.  This occurs with the Moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth (perigee) in a given orbit.
  • Earth, Moon and Sun are all in a line, with Moon in its nearest approach to Earth.  When a full moon rises while it’s at apogee, the disk we see will be brighter and larger.





  • __________The  moon is not round (or spherical). Instead, it’s shaped like an egg. If you go outside and look up at the moon, one of the small ends is pointing right at you. And the moon’s center of mass is not at the geometric center of the satellite; it’s about 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) off-center. Earth, likewise, bulges in its midsection.
  • When the moon is closest to Earth (called its perigee), spring tides are even

    Tides

    higher, and they’re called perigean spring tides. Some of Earth’s rotational energy is stolen by the moon, causing our planet to slow down by about 1.5 milliseconds every century.

  • Each day, though not at the same time, the moon comes up in the East and goes down in the West — much like the sun and other stars and for the same reason Earth rotates, on its axis, toward the East, pulling celestial objects into view and then forcing them to slip away. The moon also makes an orbital trip around Earth once every 29.5 days.

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The beauty of the Moon has inspired men throughout the world. Poems have been written about it. It’s light has been a guide in the middle of the night. Man has walked on it.     

Beethoven must have looked up into the night sky and was inspired to composed his great work.

Truly, God has blessed earth with the glory of the moon. (See video below)