A Full Moon and Penumbral Lunar Eclipse


What is a full moon but the light of the sun reflected on the face of the moon, and a lunar eclipse nothing but the shadow of the earth dancing on the surface of the moon?

Lunar eclipses have been associated with predictions, myths and cataclysmic events. Shakespeare wrote: “We make guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon, and stars, as if we were villains on necessity, fools by heavenly compulsion.” (King Lear)

Tonight is one such night when we see a full moon and an eclipse, though the latter is subtle and subdued.

I’d like to enjoy it as another beautiful night. A reminder of the vastness of the universe, its wonders and mysteries, the fleetingness — and at the same time, the constancy — of nature.

Yes, we are small in the midst of all this, but we dare to think big, because we want to find meaning in our existence. With our dreams we reach out for our place in the higher order of things, and with our hopes we insist that our lives are more than a fleeting shadow dancing on the surface of the moon.


(The penumbral shadow is at the right side of the moon in the photo.
More info here and here from space.com on the penumbral lunar eclipse seen on March 23, 2016. Photo taken at 1156 GMT, March 23, 2016, Manila, Philippines.)


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