last few nights have been particularly starry…. obviously so, cos the rain clears the clouds and reveals the stars beneath…. the 3 stars in a straight line have also been easily visible recently…
most of us know it as the Orion. actually, they are part of the constellation called Orion. Its known as the Orion belt. they are blue-white in colour and will eventually explode as a supernova. and although we see them together all the time, they are actually from different times. one’s 1300 light yrs away, another’s 915 and another 870 light yrs away..
there are many other constellations… all over the sky.. over all parts of the world..
i remember in NIE when we went to science centre for a trip. we went to the astromony section, where we had to enter this dark dome shaped thing. and like kids, some of us took out our mini torch lights and started playing with them.. anyway, thats besides the point.
the guy there who was explaining abt the stars and constellations was really nice.
he pointed at some dots visualised on the dome and said, “thats the bla bla, and that one there is the bla bla… if you look along this line, you can see the shape of the bla bla…”
during all the Q and A, i asked him this.
“how did these shapes come abt? stars are like dots in the sky. anybody can make out whatever shape they want. its just dots. why does it specifically have to be an eagle or pegasus, or the horoscope ones? give me the same dots and i can draw myself in the sky! and i’ll call it the Queen ‘misspegasus’ star…. now all i’ll need is to create a legend behind it and 100 yrs later, i’ll be a famous star!!!”
i mean, look at this man… you could draw out almost anything with these stars, isnt it…
and guess what… that was true…! constellations are nothing more than fables made up by those who had nothing better to do.. and evidently, it helped! for farmers who did not see much season changes, seeing the Scorpius in the northern hemisphere meant that it was summer.
apparently, these help in direction. like when you see the Orion belt, you’ll be able to figure out where the shoulders and foot are.
the other popular star would be Sirius. thats the brightest star in the sky at night cos its one of the closest to Earth, at 8.6 light years away…
yet another one would be the North star. to tell direction. i remember the guy at science centre, telling us something abt folding your palm and them looking at the star at some angle, and that would be north. i cant really remember it now.
astronomy is fun. sheesh… there’s so many things to learn in this world… everything’s a marvel… so many things to explore and learn, so little time…