Star Gazing

My understanding of things scientific is limited to broad sweeping generalities and just enough factual data to jump to unsupported conclusions. This in no way deters me from devising theories such as the one I have been pondering of late – the nature of the sun.

From what I understand the sun is like a gigantic atomic furnace that throbs and shudders and explodes with a seemingly unceasing and unlimited energy. Granted, sometime in the far, distant future our sun will one day run dry and burn out. Until then, it is the heart of our universe whose rays support life-creating conditions, particularly here on earth.

I have also read that our sun is a star. If we were somehow magically whisked to another galaxy we may see our own sol twinkling in the firmament.

The other day a confluence of these ideas came together in my mind – that our sun is a star, that our sun is the heart of our solar system and that our sun is active and life-giving. I made a leap – of intuition, of understanding, or perhaps misdirection, in keeping with the ancient adage, “As above, so below.”

If the sun is the heart of our solar system, then the heart of our bodies is our own personal sun, and as such is a baby star. In the center of our being, we carry a star that throbs and beats and gives life.

I ask myself is this stretching things too much but I think there is some important truth here.

We are slowly coming to the understanding the earth itself is a living organism and as such has some level of consciousness. Does that not also mean that our sun is also conscious? Is it not acting as the heart of the body of our solar system? And by analogy, does not every cell of our body also contain life and consciousness; is there somewhere buried in the nucleus of a cell an infinitesimal sun that is the furnace of its life?

Does this then mean we are comprised of billions and billions of starlets? Tiny pinpoints of light that shine and blink and throb with life?

Then I considered the theory that when a star dies it can become a black hole that sucks all light back into itself. Some scientists believe that these black holes collapse into white holes creating a torsion field which then give birth to new stars and new solar systems in an infinite series of Big Bangs.

Is this perhaps what happens when we die? Collapse into our selves, and then emerge newborn and vital on the other side?

As I said, my grasp of modern science is slippery at best but I am intrigued by the picture and the possibility that within my heart a star is in residence that conducts a symphony of life throughout my body, lighting each new cell as it is born, thereby passing my own Olympic torch down red corridors.


The Next Day

The thin crack in the pale gray clouds
Silently open and the light gets in,
Just like Leonard said it would,
And the wet dark day is transformed.
A tall white-trunked tree stands proud and solitary
Against the blue sky, its shadow a hand on the dial.

At 30 degrees above the horizon,
The sun shines down impersonally
On good and bad alike and washed clean
Of last year’s karma, the soul of the earth
Stretches and preens and tosses its head,
Stripping the trees to reveal bare black skeletons

With arthritic limbs studded with buds
Like tiny furled fists ready to open at the least encouragement.
From out of cars and down paths and behind bushes,
From sidewalks and shortcuts and skyways, they arrive,
The sparrows and crows and gulls,
The joggers and children and old women with dogs,

The men with fishing poles and the mothers with babies,
All grabbing at the blue sky – for all had heard
More rain was on the way which is greeted with relief
As well as dismay by a thirsty land and its people.
A woman with a long white scarf that is echoed by her long white hair
Strides past the pond overtaking the bent lady in red pushing a walker.

Two fisherman, one old and one young, heads together,
Rods leaning against shoulders, hands holding delicate lines,
Stand in high grass and debate the merits of various lures.
Brisk winds from the north loft the football from the hands
Of the teenage boys who play amongst the children
Freshly sprung from nearby schools who run through playgrounds shouting.

A toddler, legs pumping in wavy circles, races across the field
Chased by a mother who calls out his name while another
Pushes arm-waving twins in a stroller pony tail bobbing with each step.
Dogs arrive, straining at leashes, noses to the ground,
Tails in the air, bodies twitching with energy,
Ready to leap and run, Jack-in-the-box with joy.

A young man starts his rusty Ford pick-up
And sings about fast women and faster cars
As the sun sinks slowly towards the tree line,
The clouds let loose the folds of their white skirts,
The edges quietly flowing across the sky
And settling in for an extended stay.

Wearing the face of an ancient Aztec,
An old man in bedroom slippers shuffles past
And raises one horn-hard hand,
Curved fingers tipped with yellow nails,
In acknowledgement of this person’s presence.


Here is a link to the ‘Leonard’ reference:


osiris-sun-worshipBy Valentine’s Day spring will come to Sacramento. There is a tree with white blossoms, I think it is called False Pear, that is the first to bloom and today I see limbs studded with tightly closed, pink-tinged buds.

To celebrate I visit the park and sit in the sun awhile. An older woman using a cane is taking a young terrier for a walk. The dog’s nose is to the ground and the tail in constant motion with his joy at being alive.

A young mother pushes a toddler in a stroller that bumps across the grassy field. The wheels make a clickety-clack sound like a train on rough tracks and the baby cries in counterpoint while the mother chatters to it in Russian.

At the shelter a group of school children enjoy a picnic while in the nearby parking lot, city workers arrive in pick-up trucks and pull out brown paper bags.

In the distance I see the spume of the lake fountain shooting high in the air to the delight of the ducks and geese bobbing tail-up in search of lunch while an old man walks by with an empty fishing pole over his shoulder.

I close my eyes and bask. The temperature is cool, the sun warm, and the air damp with the scent of fresh mown grass and just a hint of skunk. It is a day that encourages the mind to be silent and the heart content. What more could one want?

As I drink in the sun I feel its energy sinking into my skin, into my bones, its rays cleansing me from the inside out. I become a blade of grass, a leaf, a flower, head raised to the sun and feet held by earth.

The sun is the universal food, the cosmic manna. The transubstantiative power of its rays feed the plants that feed the animals that feed me. With each bite I take, I eat sun.

The same fire that burns in its blazing heart is the same fire that burns in mine; the same atomic furnace that produces its light is the same furnace found in the atoms of my being. Is it any wonder that the ancients worshipped the sun for its life-giving power? Is this why St. Francis called it Brother?

I remember stories of saints and mystics of all religions who were said to live for years without eating any food. Had they remembered how it is that plants live on light?

Now that the long nights of winter are tipping towards equilibrium, the seeds we planted on those long dreamy evenings will be breaking ground as Easter with its resurrection arrives. At the spring equinox the life-giving sun begins its climb to the zenith, and so does the Son return to remind us there is no death.