Anchor symbolism 

I started seeing these bracelets on Instagram a few months back and since I use paracord for my pendants I decided to make one of these. I looked up the meaning and most writings I’ve seen refer to a sea or sailing, or other maritime connection. While that certainly is significant, we should look deeper.

I’m not a very good swimmer, or very water-oriented. So sailing wasn’t my first thought when I saw these. Anchors speak to me of stability, holding one’s- and being held in place. They symbolize grounding, and mindfulness…anchored to now.

You can spend a few dollars to make one of these, or there are a number of sites that offer them for more.

Sitting in the silence

image

The power went out sometime around 2am, and has been out for about the last two and a half hours. I have to do everything by candlelight to get ready for work. I have six burning right now. The tealights won’t burn as long, but are better than the votive in the kitchen that keeps pooling wax and drowning it’s flame.

It’s kind of nice not having the 60hz buzz of the electricity and everything that is plugged in. I can just hear the storm and whatever traffic is going by outside. Other than not having cedar floors and a wood-burning stove it reminds me a little of the cabin at King’s Canyon National Park in California.

This is in no way similar to the days- and weeks-long outages that many suffer under every year. I remember it being out for over 24 hours a few years ago, but that’s been the worst I’ve experienced living in Austin. I wish I could sit here until sunrise, but my shift starts at about that time. So we’ll have to end our hour of camping here.

A billion years as a day

My existential and cosmological ramblings with a little dab of Zen and science.

betelgeuse
Betelgeuse, Credit ESO/Digitized Sky Survey 2. Acknowledgment: Davide De Martin.

Stars are a good reminder of how the universe is all one and there is only now. This is a photograph of the star Betelgeuse, the 2nd brightest star in the constellation of Orion. It’s nearing the end of its life and has been showing signs that it’s ejecting matter from its surface. It’s a red supergiant nearly 12 times the mass of the Sun, and it is roughly 650ly from us. Light takes 650 years to reach us. Changes on its surface are that old. Astrophysicists are watching for evidence of a supernova.

So let’s forget all that for a moment and look at it from the perspective of 18th Century astronomy. We’re out at night looking at Orion. We’re tracing lines from the feet up to the belt, up the tunic to the shoulder of the  arm that’s drawing the bow. And up at the left at the shoulder of the huntsman we see a star that can look pinkish at times.

And a minute later the star explodes.

We take out a notebook and make notes. We describe what we see in every way we can. We write about it for days until it stops being visible in daylight. From where we are in the 1700s the star just blew up. We don’t know about c, or concepts like light-years. We don’t understand that the actual explosion happened sometime in the 11th century during the crusades. This is all happening ‘now.’

And even today, with all our understanding of theoretical astrophysics, whatever we observe, in a sense, is happening in real time…because now is all there is.