Monday, March 30, 2009

Starburst in Insomniac Night

Since late 2005, I’ve had the great pleasure of knowing what the best in life can offer. It started back when I moved my ass to Sumatra. It was a confusing feeling at the first time, because it wasn’t what I had been dreaming for. I though I would have great life in Jakarta, see modernity of civilization and taste a colorful life here. If it’s not too late to acknowledge that life in Sumatra is one of the best times in my life, I would love to confess it. I won’t blame the childish thought that I had back 3 years ago, it was just a thought I did know why, I love that I finally realize I was wrong.

The universe seemed to work showing me that life is rich, wherever we live and whatever condition that we have. It showed me how beautiful a smile of local people could be, how genuine people’s heart in my organization and how easy life in sub-urban was. I miss it. And the universe succeeded to move me. Ever since, I spent much time admiring my life in Sumatra. And many times I did meditative time in a quiet place, just like I’m doing tonight.

It’s another Sunday night of insomnia striking. I’ve been feeling it lately. I do some googling and Mr. Google told me it occurs when there is disorder in the brain and heart and overactive mind. And there are some treatments for insomnia actually, most of them are in biological words I don’t understand and at the end of it, Mr. Google said that, “…In several cases, sexual intercourse has been found to heavily reduce insomnia.” Thanks for that mister. What I have now is only my laptop and an empty can of Pringles.

I’ve been admiring the universe lately. I felt happiness, completely happy when reading anything related to universe. It is just something much bigger than us, even our earth and we don’t really know how life out of there. When insomnia striking, I usually do some meditative method, looking at the sky for a while, feel the peacefulness and let the imagination flies as far as my eyes can take me. I look up at the sky and it is quite clear after a heavy rain this afternoon. I stand on the floor outside my house. Reno and Keita are standing there too; maybe they feel the same way. Starts are shining to show that they really exist.

Do you get the explanation from teacher about how our universe looks like and how big it is? Well, I’ve been spending some time to learn about Astronomy lately and have been admiring God creation.

Our mother earth is located at somewhere in Milky Way galaxy. Milky Way galaxy itself is the galaxy in which our solar system is located. It is a spiral galaxy which is part of local group of galaxies, together with Andromeda galaxy, and that local group is one of the billions galaxies in the observable universe. Oh yes, I don’t do typo, it is BILLIONS and OBERSERVABLE. So what are the objects beyond the observable galaxy, no one knows actually. The universe is limitless.

Calculating how big our observable universe isn’t that easy, but quite simple roughly. Let’s start with Milky Way. It has diameter of 100,000 light years (ly) and thickness of 1,000 ly. Recall that 1 ly is the distance reached by light for a year (light speed is approximately 1 billion km/h, it’s like driving from Jakarta-Bandung with speed 120 km/h but light doing it 9 millions time faster than your car). Milky Way itself has 200 to 400 billions of stars with Milky Way as one of the biggest and the brightest one.

Milky Way is just one of the billions of galaxies in the universe. So what’s the biggest galaxy in the observable universe? The largest galaxy is IC 1101, the monstrous giant elliptical galaxy measures a whopping 6,000,000 light years (as compared to the 100,000 ly of the Milky Way) in diameter and is said to be at least 60 times as large as the Milky Way. It also contains about 100 trillion stars (200-400 billion for the Milky Way).

So, Milky Way is one of the billions of galaxy with diameter size of 100,000 ly and the biggest one’s diameter is 6,000,000 ly, and there are billions of galaxies out of there with size in between. I really can’t imagine how big the universe is. And I having said that it is monstrous giant, we then have to be overwhelmed by the fact that all those galaxies are just in the observable universe.

Okay, if the conclusion of this note is that I’m nerd with all those numbers and facts, what the heck. I just love the beauty in putting all numbers and facts into something overwhelmingly beautiful and undeniably romantic. Life is beautiful in a way that it gives unique meaning for everybody. Universe is full of things to see.

Imagining sitting on M82 galaxy.

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Kaila said...

YES!! Love the geeky post Roms. The universe is UNIMAGINABLY massive and we haven't even begun to understand it. Soooo cool. x

Romy Williams said...

Hey Kailaa! It's good you like the geeky post. |o/ I remember the conversation about all those geeky and google things! Haha, so fun though. I'll see you somewhere!