The Mystery of Solar Totality

The solar eclipse of 2017 has meaning far beyond the moon passing in front of the sun.

21 August 2017 will be an important day in astronomical history. A total eclipse of the sun will occur, cutting a 70-mile-wide path from Salem, OR to Columbia, SC in the United States.  The physics of this event would humble Einstein, with sun, moon, and earth moving through space in perfect time and position, finer even than Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, and Mikhail Baryshnikov at their most magnificent. There will be eclipse parties, eclipse merchandise, and millions of eclipse viewers, some acting as citizen scientists for the US National Air and Space Agency (NASA). Schools are closed, and visitors in Oregon are renting tents for the weekend for $1,500 to get a front row seat.

Continue reading “The Mystery of Solar Totality”

Useful Quotations on Aviation and Space

Pithy Prose for Politicians, Preachers, Professors, Pundits, and Public Speakers.

“There’s a historical milestone in the fact that our Apollo 11 landing on the moon took place a mere 66 years after the Wright Brothers’ first flight.” Buzz Aldrin

“The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it.” J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

“A superior pilot uses his superior judgment to avoid situations which require the use of his superior skills.” Frank Borman – Apollo 8

“I’m going to fly this thing, then I’m going to set it afire and never have another thing to do with aeroplanes.” Clyde Cessna, after an unsuccessful 1911 attempt at flight

“The reason angels can fly is because they take themselves lightly.” G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.” Leonardo da Vinci

“If you’re faced with a forced landing, fly the thing as far into the crash as possible” Bob Hoover, former test pilot and airshow performer

“Always keep an ‘out’ in your hip pocket.” Beverly “Bevo” Howard, aerobatic pilot and entrepreneur.

“Keep thy airspeed up, lest the earth come from below and smite thee.” William Kershner, test pilot, flight instructor and author.

“Flight by machines heavier than air is unpractical and insignificant, if not utterly impossible.” Simon Newcomb (March 12, 1835 – July 11, 1909), Canadian-American astronomer and mathematician.

“Aviation is proof that given, the will, we have the capacity to achieve the impossible.” Eddie Rickenbacker

“A single lifetime, even though entirely devoted to the sky, would not be enough for the study of so vast a subject. A time will come when our descendants will be amazed that we did not know things that are so plain to them.” Seneca, Roman philosopher, 1st century AD

“Man must rise above the Earth—to the top of the atmosphere and beyond—for only thus will he fully understand the world in which he lives”. Socrates

“Thank God men cannot fly, and lay waste the sky as well as the earth.” Henry David Thoreau

Argument Analysis – Does the Big Bang Require a Divine Creator?

Layman and scientists alike have discussed the Big Bang theory for how the universe began. Though disparaged by many Christians, the Big Bang, also known as the Inflationary Theory, is closer to the Genesis account than we might realize. 

Last week I was an adult leader for the First Baptist Alexandria youth choir serving in Chicago. The choir sang, danced and acted at Uptown Baptist Church (UBC), Golf Road Baptist Church, the Pacific Garden Mission (PGM), and other places. When not performing, the group led sports camps and backyard Bible clubs. At UBC we also prepared and served the Monday evening meal for the homeless, refinished tables and pews, remodeled a bath room, taped and mudded drywall, painted, and did a host of other construction projects. At PGM we made beds, cleaned showers, served meals, stuffed envelopes, and typed scripts for their “Unshackled” radio drama series. Every evening the group did devotions, and sometimes we went sightseeing. It was a tremendous time of fun and ministry.

Continue reading “Argument Analysis – Does the Big Bang Require a Divine Creator?”