The Hand Of God

FTLComm - Tisdale - Friday, June 14, 2002
First the physics!

High above the surface of the earth the gases that form the atmosphere swirl and churn about as a result of two powerful forces, gravity and momentum. The earth itself rotates on its axis and the air above the surface lags behind the rotation producing an apparent wind on the surface. The heat from the sun affects the surface unevenly and air is warmed and as it warms it expands and rises vertically, then cools. The water trapped in the atmosphere becomes part of this unending process and adds considerable complexity to the process. But what we see is the water condensed to ice crystals reflecting light and we know that as clouds.

Traveling around the globe is a particularly interesting wind belt, up near the top of the atmosphere and referred to as the jet stream. Often traveling more than one hundred miles per hour this wind affects and is affected by the air miles and miles below it.

This morning as we ate breakfast on the deck out of the West riding the Jet stream was this plume of ethereal ice crystals high in the atmosphere perhaps thirty to forty thousand feet above us, a cirrus cloud.
The cirrus cloud passed over head at a considerable speed and for the first time I have captured a UFO. (see speck in picture above) A UFO is not a space ship but means "unidentified flying object" In this case Purple Martins had been observed above us and that black speck is most likely a fast moving Martin catching breakfast on the fly.

Leonardo de Vinci in his miraculous paintings on the ceiling of the Roman chapel has a remarkable image of an outstretched hand and indeed that massive cloud above reminded me so much of Leonardo's painting.

There is no question that we, often troubled and inept human beings look toward some greater power to reach out and solve our problems. So much so that we are often willing to invent such a being just to relieve ourselves of responsibilities and

ultimately of our need to own up to what we have or have not done.

The committed "born again" Christians and indeed the fatalistic believers in Islam will recite their willingness to accept the apparent fate to the will of God or the will of Allah. They abdicate their part in the concert of life and reality by claiming that this or that act is part of the great scheme of things rather than accepting the horrifying truth that cruel and damnable events are the work of willful or unwillful people.

The hand of God is apparent in nature and more abundantly obvious in the design of life as many perceive a wondrous pattern in creation. The dynamic argument about God being an active participant in shaping reality is perhaps redundant if one accepts the godliness of each of us, while many suggest that perhaps God did help to form reality but no longer is a participant. ("God is dead so they say, he's been dead several days, he wasn't a popular type.")

It is for each of us to mount a quest and explore what we see, know and believe to determine for ourselves that part that is played in our lives and the lives of others by what we refer to as God. It is also for us to guard against and constantly be on the look out for those who have not taken the time and effort to examine their beliefs and upon emotion and without the exercise of their intellect to turn over the gift of free will and self actualisation to others who would manipulate them and call that manipulation "the work of God."

Timothy W. Shire