Saturday, July 18, 2009
Arbiters of Fate
[Start disclaimer... This is a really weird one ...End disclaimer]
One of the things I'm really looking forward to seeing, while at Lake Tahoe, are stars. A serious drawback to being an urban dweller is that the night sky, even when fantastically clear, is opaque, a sickly pink (from all the streetlights) without a lot of detail. I can almost always see the moon, Venus and maybe a couple of other planets, but stars? At least here on Capitol Hill, even on the clearest nights, I can only see five to ten stars.
In lieu of direct contact, I read about them, look at the Astronomy Picture of the Day website (religiously), watch for pics and descriptions of them on other blogs. I read astrological charts, astronomy books and magazines. I make constellation paintings, draw constellations in my personal journal. I love the old books of sky illustrations - people used to see so much just by gazing at the night sky. Wow.
Perhaps I shouldn't admit that I talk to the stars all the time. I talk to them because I believe that starlight is in some way exactly the same substance as destiny. Please don't ask me what I mean by that; I'm not sure. The patterns of stars in the sky, the way that the starry sky holds all of of time from the Big Bang onwards (depending on what you're looking at) leads me to believe that those fiery suns out there shine with mystery and history, creation and destruction, in other words: destiny. The great artist Hiroshige worshiped the Pole Star. I really get that; it makes perfect sense to me.
Probably I'm not the first star worshiper to imagine that the stars have administrative assistants, scholar-bureaucrats who handle the complexities of destiny. Surely there must be a lot of administrative "paperwork" involved in making the fateful connections between stars and people. In my mind's eye what I "see" are stellar switchboard operators working hard to make sure we stay connected with our personal destinies. I call these beings the Star Mandarins and I think they sometimes swoop down close to the surface here, perhaps to have a closer look at the objects of their work, including you and me. When I see clouds like the ones in these pictures, I always wonder if the Star Mandarins are nearby.
This summer there have been a lot of these odd clouds, coming out of the nowhere, set against a very different overcast texture. They bring a distinct resonance with them. When they dissipate, the resonance also disappears. I keep reading that this year in particular, polar mesospheric clouds have been forming in abundance. The appearance of noctilucent clouds is, according to the cosmology of Reya, always connected with the approach of the Star Mandarins.
So you see I can not wait to sit out on a deck somewhere up at Tahoe, and look up into the bowl of the sky, drink in the beauty of a dark sky spangled with stars. It'll be so nice to actually see my dear friends, the Arbiters of Fate, wheeling slowly around the Pole Star as I watch. I can't wait!