Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Astronomy, Paul, and Birthdays

One of the major spiritual influences that Paul may have been contending with in his letter to the Colossians was Iranian astrological speculation.

While reflecting on these this possibility, I was suddenly inspired to see what the northern sky might have looked like the morning I was born. As luck would have it, there is a nifty online application at called Starry Night Online. The configuration options allow you to pick everything from your exactly latitude and longitude to the date and time of your view. I chose July 25, 1969, at 3:15 a.m. (I was born at 3:10 a.m., but this was as close as I could get using the online applet).

Here's the view of the northern sky the morning of my birth, as seen in Salt Lake City, Utah (click the image to enlarge):

With the stars labeled:

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