The Hubble Space Telescope was launched into low earth orbit in 1990 and remains in operation. It has delivered the most awe-inspiring images of the Cosmos ever since, some of which are used on this website.
When we gaze at distant objects, we see them not as they are now, but as they were in the past. This is because distance is measured in light years – how long it takes light to reach the mirrors of our telescope. Looking through the Hubble then is going back in time, observing continuous creation in action.
Scientists believe that the Universe, which is all of space and time, was born 13.8 billion years ago in an explosion beyond comprehension known as the Big Bang. Microseconds later, matter began to form, coalesce, and expand. The Universe has been expanding ever since, continuing to create itself, and still is.
As for its end, some scientists say that it will continue to expand until the force of gravity stops this expansion. All matter would then collapse to a point, a final singularity called “the Big Crunch,” the opposite of the Big Bang.
Theoretically, this expansion and contraction – creation and destruction – could continue infinitely, and perhaps has. Theoretically, our Universe might be one of many. These theories will likely remain in the realm of the non-knowable and the mystical. The eternal and greatest mystery is what force created and will eventually destroy the Cosmos. I choose to believe that this mystery is a conscious force, and that we are all part of its consciousness.
Knowing that our bodies are literally composed of the dust of ancient exploding stars means that we were honored to be born out of energetic forces beyond comprehension, into a state of continuous expansion and creation. When we become aware that expansion/creativity is our normal state, we can then make a courageous choice to cooperate with it, rather than oppose the inevitable out of fear.
We know not what we expand into, nor where, nor even how. But we don’t need to know. Each breath we take puts our commitment to live in the light of full consciousness into practice. Each breath is an act of communion, in which we have the opportunity to co-create the expanding Universe into existence. Each word, each phrase, each sentence is a cosmic building block. The courage to create a new world has been with you from inception. All you have to do is be aware – and breathe!