Last week I mentioned a few things that I like to see as good omens for what I pray will be an awesome 2021.
But considering everything we’ve been through already, I’ll take even just a normal year.
There’s another omen that I forgot to mention last week; and it happens tonight.
It’s called the Christmas Star conjuncture, and you’ll be happy to know that you don’t need an expensive telescope to observe it.
The heavenly event is also known by some as the Star of Bethlehem, making it even more significant during this week building up to Christmas day on Friday.
The Christmas Star itself is not entirely unique, as it comes around every 20 years or so.
But what is known to astronomers as The Great Conjuncture, which we can see today, is so rare that it can’t even be called a once in a lifetime occurrence.
The last time it was this clear in the skies, was about 800 years ago, in 1226.
Technically it isn’t really a star, but rather our solar system’s two largest planets that are aligned and closest to earth.
From our viewpoint, the alignment is so perfect that we observe Saturn and Jupiter as almost one very bright star in the sky.
And because there’s no direct sunlight to interfere, we will be able to see it with the naked eye, to the west, well above the horizon and best viewed just after sunset tonight (assuming there’s no clouds to obscure it).
If you are a true space geek and own even just a small telescope or a pair of binoculars, then it will be possible to see the rings around Saturn and even some of the larger moons that orbit Jupiter.
I know that I am geeking out a bit right now, but this is truly worthwhile looking out for, because the next Great Conjunction will only occur in 2080.
Making this even more interesting is the fact that today is also the Summer Solstice; Mother Nature’s official start of the season and also the longest day of the year.
While I am not one for superstitions and old wives’ tales, I am open to believing that this is a good omen for all of us, individually and collectively.
So with that said, Happy Christmas to you and yours.
Despite everything that is happening around us, may it be a special time that brings with it not just everything you wish for, but also everything that you deserve.
I know it feels a little less jolly than what we are used to, but hopefully your heart is filled with joy.
There’s still a lot that you can express gratitude for over your Christmas lunch this year.
But please celebrate your fellowship responsibly, keep gatherings small to prevent being infected with the Coronavirus.