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Jun
15

Lunar Eclipse on the 16th of June 2011

 

The Lunar Eclipse on 16th June

As I write this, a total lunar eclipse is drowning the moon in darkness. The full moon today was beautiful. I remember mentioning to a friend (Khyzer aka SKY) how everything was so lit today. He confirmed by turning off the light of his car while we were on our way to café. I came home late and turned on my notebook. The headlines were mostly about the lunar eclipse. The best part was that the eclipse was visible from Pakistan. I’m currently sitting on the terrace of my house watching the wonderful eclipse and its beautiful. Google’s homepage has an interactive doodle that provides a live feed of the eclipse.

A lunar eclipse occurs when earth comes directly between the moon and the sun.  This blocks the sun rays from reaching the moon. Imagine the three celestial bodies in a direct alignment. The duration and type of the eclipse depend on the moons location. Today’s lunar eclipse (16th June), longest of this century, is visible over South America, Africa, Europe and most of Asia.

My mom’s constantly telling me to not look at it and come downstairs. She has her own reasons which make me recall the superstitions people have associated with the eclipses. I have met people who believed that if you watched the eclipse for too long you would end up blind. Others considered an eclipse a warning of some sort before something tragic or disastrous. Heck, a few members of my clan like to sleep off the eclipses thinking something bad, if not evil, may happen if they stayed awake during this magnificent display of cosmic movement. I’m sure these superstitions have some degree of merit but most of these superstitions have rolled on from the times when education was not widespread. Lets not forget Columbus saved his life due to an eclipse. A local newspaper has advised to not look at the eclipse for too long, reminds me of the Guardians of Ga’Hoole. Maybe the people at the newspaper think we too can get moon blinked.

Whatever anyone says, I’m going to sit here and enjoy this marvel of space. It’s beautiful and its magnificence cannot be described in words just as its aura cannot be captured by my ordinary Samsung NV10. I tried making a video but my camera’s not designed for such a spectacle. The beauty of this singularity cannot be understood unless the naked eye sees it. Its mesmerizing and makes you feel one with the moon. HOWL!!!

Ok, enough of the wolf inside, down boy down. I suggest anyone who can see a lunar eclipse should see it. This link http://eclipse.gsfc.nasa.gov/LEdecade/LEdecade2011.html contains a list of the lunar eclipses till 2020; should be enough opportunities for everyone to look at them.

Oh yeah, please don’t ever try to see a solar eclipse with the naked eye. That’s a whole different story and you should not even try to do it unless you’re ok with damaging your eyes or going blind.

Enjoy the darkness tonight.

 

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