We’ve forgotten our place in the universe. Since the darkness has been illuminated by street lights and neon signs, we’ve stopped looking up at the stars.
Fortunately, in Northumberland, we still have the ability to gaze up and see the cosmic dance of the stars in the black void of space.
Projects like Kielder’s Dark Sky Park and Dark Sky Reserve are only possible because of our rural setting. But when was the last time that you lay on your back and watched the constellations, let alone looked through a telescope?
They may not be as impressive as Stonehenge, but it is possible that the Cup and Ring marked rocks at Simonside are some kind of astral or cosmological map.
It’s entirely possible that those swirls represent galaxies as seen in the night skies over Coquetdale by our ancestors. With no television back then, the nights must have been long. Not as long as having to watch X Factor, mind, but still with plenty of time to ponder on the mysteries of the solar system.
It can seem as we are separate from the rest of the universe with human kind’s constant quest for Extra Terrestrial Life, the longing to believe that we are not alone in this great swirling emptiness, but we are an integral part of a whole of mind-blowing size and proportions.
Could those Cup and Ring marks not be some kind of interpretation?
Astrology may now be more synonymous with overweight effeminate blokes or way-out-there women who’ll tell you that yellow is your lucky colour or to buy a lottery ticket as it is your lucky day, but in reality it is an important part of nature.
Nature is the driving power not only on this planet, but in the cosmos. It goes by many names. They call it ‘The Force’ in the Star Wars films. Just look at how helpless America, the most powerful country in the world, was in the face of Hurricane Sandy, or by the absolute devastation wrecked by Katrina.
We’re like The Who or Nirvana destroying our drum kit and guitars at the end of a particularly raucous set and the most significant galactic alignment in human history is about to occur on the 21st December 2012 – predicted by the Mayan people as the ‘End of the World.’
This 2012 winter solstice marks an alignment with the galactic plane that occurs only once every 26,000 years and will open up the ‘Black Road’ of Mayan legend, the dark dust clouds in the Milky Way aligning precisely with the Sun, or something like that. I’m no expert.
There are many doomsday philosophies surrounding the date and if you look online, you’ll find many of them.
Whatever happens, there can be no better way to witness the End of the World than with your loved ones around you, sitting in the heather on a hill watching the stars with a glass of something belly-warming in your hand under Northumberland’s dark skies.
Category: Northumberland History