In 1996, astronomers pointed the Hubble Ultra Deep Field telescope into a small part of the sky, right near the Big Dipper, that seemed utterly empty. Since this is a really high tech telescope and incredibly expensive to run, it wasn’t just that a couple of guys decided to go “sky surfing” during their lunch break, but they actually had to, I guess, convince their bosses to let them look at “nothing.”
What they found is not necessarily surprising to me, but I think it not only eases a bit of the worried mind but also encourages us to listen more to our hearts, for there are definitely limits to what our brains can process and understand.
We pointed the most powerful telescope ever built by human beings at absolutely nothing and discovered that we occupy a very tiny place in the heavens. There are over 100 billion galaxies in the universe. Our brains have no way to accurately put that in any meaningful perspective.
This is coming from hardcore scientists, and I think the statement is such a wonderful synopsis of what happens when the brilliant human mind is allowed to tango with the great big mystery of our existence. Whatever you want to call it (provided you find the left-brain exercise helpful) — god, soul, consciousness, love, eternity, all there is — I always find it refreshing to be reminded that we’re so small (in the physical sense) and yet so huge (in that we’re all part of this cosmic carnival) all at the same time.
My thought upon looking into the ultra deep field was this: Whatever I do, I’d like to allow for the possibility that I know nothing.