By Orion's Sword

This may be obvious to many of you - and I would actually be encouraged if it were - but I had a bit of a shocking discovery a couple of weekends ago. As you might be able to tell, I love astronomy, cosmology, all of science in fact, but especially space. So vast, so profound, so mysterious and beautiful - it really is the only "god" we need - and yet, I've had few opportunities to really look at stars in any meaningful way. For, I've lived in cities now for far, far too long, and due to light pollution, you can't see many stars in the city!

So, it was with some joy I found myself in Maine, in the country, with a dark, star laden sky above me. A friend had some high-powered binoculars and I pointed them at the above constellation, Orion. I was shocked to discover that you can actually see the Orion Nebula through binoculars, as indicated above. It was magnificent - you could see the fuzzy outlines of the nebula with some color; it was so different than all the stars around it. It took my breath away!

I encourage any and all to do the same if you have the chance. I suspect any old binoculars would work - point em at the "sword" in the Orion constellation, and focus on the second "star", which is the nebula.

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