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The link below is to an image. Please open it in a new window and once it has loaded be sure to zoom it to original size. Spend a few minutes looking at it, scroll around and admire the detail. Then come back to this window and read the message below.
Here is the link.
The image you've just seen is from the Spitzer Space Telescope. It's an image towards the galactic core of our very own Milky Way. Every single spec of light that you see is a star. How many do you think there are in that image alone? They seem innumerable don't they?
That is just a tiny fraction of the stars in our galaxy. There are some 400 billion in total. To give you an idea of what sort of fraction of those stars are shown in the image there are more than 45,000 times as many stars in our galaxy as there are pixels in that image. I'd estimate that there are about 100,000 stars visible in that image. So, if you printed that image out 4 million times and laid them out side by side then you'd have an idea of how many stars are in our galaxy alone. Printed on A4 and then laid out in a grid your final image would cover 38 square city blocks. If you piled the paper into a stack it would be 121 stories high - 19 stories taller than the Empire State Building.
Around many of those stars are planets and around many of those planets are moons. To give an idea of just how many, there are at least 63 moons around Jupiter. We've so far discovered some 246 similar planets in other systems and we have great reason to believe that they are common around a very large proportion of all stars.
I want you to get an idea of just how much is out there. I want you to try to consider just how many other suns and other worlds there are, regardless of whether they have life or not, but just to consider the sheer amount of stuff out there. It's incredibly beautiful isn't it. And like I said before, that image is just a tiny fraction of our own galaxy.
Now open this next image in a new window, zoom in again and take a look around before reading on. You can also view this Hubble image here in a zoomable format that's great for exploring in greater detail.
This is an image from the Hubble Telescope. It's called a deep field image and basically what you are seeing is a view beyond our galaxy. What you see in the image are other galaxies. There's so many of them aren't there. Each one of those contains hundreds of billions of stars; some contain a trillion or more. And if you want to know how much of the sky that is imagine holding up a quarter (the coin) about 70 feet above you. The amount of sky blocked by that quarter at that distance is about the same amount you are seeing in the image. Imagine how many quarters you would need to form a 140 foot diameter ball around you, with you in the middle and behind every single quarter around 10,000 galaxies that Hubble can see and each and everyone of those full of hundreds of billions of stars. Most of those stars with multiple worlds around them and most of those worlds with moons. Are you getting the picture?
Now, being honest, can you really claim that we are so important in this entire incredible universe that it all exists for us? Can you really put your hand on your heart and say truthfully, without the slightest tinge of arrogance or doubt, that the Bible contains a single phrase that demonstrates an awareness of all that is out there, all that we exist within?
I don't see how that is possible for an honest mind. But perhaps someone can tell me how, after understanding a little of where you are, you can truly believe without the slightest doubt that a book that mentions none of this can be the ultimate truth.
Do you really think that Genesis is an accurate account of the creation of all of that? Are you really satisfied with that truth?
Think about that when you close your eyes tonight.
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