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A New Earth?

space_ngc7331A team of astronomers discovers a distant planet with conditions that may be “just right” for life
A team of astronomers based at UC Santa Cruz and the Carnegie Institution of Washington has announced the discovery of a planet in another solar system that has some of the Goldilocks conditions for sustaining life.

The team, led by Steven Vogt, professor of astronomy and astrophysics at UCSC, and Paul Butler from the Carnegie Institution, announced its findings on Sept. 29 of an Earth-sized planet located squarely within its host star’s “habitable stone.”

The planet is currently being called Gliese 581g. It rotates around its sun Gliese 581, a star 20 light years away from Earth that can be seen by human eyes in the constellation Libra. This star has been a controversial planet-bearing red dwarf that has sparked much debate among planet hunters. As of now, its total planet tally is six—and Gliese 581g is not its first orbiter suspected of being suitable for life. Two previously discovered Gliese 581 acolytes lie on the fringes of the habitable zone (the distance from the sun that would allow liquid water to exist) but Gliese 581g orbits in the range that is “just right,” according to Vogt.

However, even though the planet may meet the frequently elusive conditions for sustaining life, Earthlings should note that the classification “potentially habitable” is not synonymous with temperate or pleasant. Gliese 581g would be anything but pleasant for a terrestrial visitor; the planet is tidally locked, so half the planet always faces the sun while the other half rests in eternal darkness, making extreme regional climates. The areas thought to be habitable—the terminators—are in the border zones between the darkness and the light.

Though its local climates may radically vary from Earth’s, the findings suggest that the two planets have other similarities. Though it is three to four times larger than our host planet, its mass suggests a rocky planet that could support an atmosphere.

These findings are based on 11 years of telescopic observation. Though light years away, in the scale of the universe, Gliese 581 is a neighboring star, which leads Vogt to believe that that there are many stars that have solar systems containing potentially habitable planets throughout the universe. “If these are rare, we shouldn't have found one so quickly and so nearby,” he said in a Sept. 29 UCSC press release. “There could be tens of billions of these systems in our galaxy.”

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Giving Thanks: The Thought-Form of Solution

We are in the time and under the influence of Sagittarius, sign of the wanderer, good food, good music, and the joy (Jupiter as ruler) that occurs from giving to others while simultaneously giving thanks from our hearts. Having the Thanksgiving holiday during the month of Sag is not a mistake. No other sign understands joy (an aspect of the Soul) as Sag (except Pisces when not in despair). “Sag is a beam of directed and focused light. The beam reveals a greater light ahead, illuminating the Way to the center of the Light,” emitting the Ray of Joyfulness. Thanksgiving is a time for gratitude; in the form of prayers, thoughts, feelings, wishes, hopes and greetings. Gratitude is something we still need to learn. Gratitude creates goodwill. Together, gratitude and goodwill create the “thought-form of solution” for humanity and our world’s problems. Gratitude and goodwill are the prerequisites for the reappearance of the Christ, the Aquarian World Teacher. In Ancient Wisdom texts it is written, “being grateful is the hallmark of one who is enlightened.” Gratitude comes from the Soul—the characteristics of which are love and wisdom (Ray 2). Gratitude is scientifically and occultly (mental, not emotional) a releasing agent. Gratitude liberates us and everything around us. Also a service to others, gratitude is deeply scientific in nature, releasing us from the past and laying open our future path leading to the new culture and civilization, the new laws and principles, the rising light of Aquarian, the Age of Friendship and Equality. The Hierarchy lays much emphasis upon gratitude. Let us be grateful this year and this season together. And so now the days of light illuminating the darkness begin (December’s festivals and feast days). Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. I am grateful for all of you, my readers.

 

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