Lunar eclipse offers a glimpse of hope

Near the mid-point of Tuesday's lunar eclipse on December 21, 2010. This photo was taken in Lincoln, Neb. Photo: Barney McCoy

I stayed up late/early last night to watch the solstice lunar eclipse.

As lunar eclipses go, I’m told it was rare to have one happen on the winter solstice.

It lasted for exactly three hours and 28 minutes.  The totality phase of the eclipse lasted 72 minutes, casting a ghostly red/brown glow over the moon that according to Time Magazine;

“It is said to have been caused by a large volume of volcanic ash and dust in the atmosphere from the many recent volcanic eruptions around the Earth.”

I watched earth’s shadow steadily reduce the moon from a white light into an orange glow with our 16-year-old daughter. (She made me promise to wake her)  It was a wondrous sight that would happen regardless of where we were, what we thought or what we might do.

Staring into the starry night,  I was reminded how change sweeps our lives always.  Can’t stop it. Must endure it.  Can’t hide from it. Learn to embrace it. Hope is available.

http://player.vimeo.com/video/18046748

Winter Solstice Lunar Eclipse from William Castleman on Vimeo.

The eclipse is a metaphor for life in motion. We move between opposites everyday:

Light, darkness.  Birth, death. Good things, bad things.  Happy, sad.  Good economy, bad economy.  Hot, cold. Sunshine, clouds.  Friends/family, loneliness.  Lucky, unlucky.  Asleep, awake.  Sick, healthy.  Win, lose.  Stop, start.  Forward, backward.  Agree, disagree.  Love, hate.  War, peace.  Coming, going. Here, there.  Together, apart.  Wet, dry.  Smile, frown.  Truth, lie.  White, black.  Sweet, sour. Loud, quiet.  Sharp, dull.

And so it goes.  Happy holidays!

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About Bernard McCoy

My views are my own and not a reflection of my employer. I'm an associate professor of Journalism at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I've also been a working journalist for the past 29 years. I have covered news stories in war zones, reported on human and natural disasters, presidential conventions, a presidential inauguration and the September 11th, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center in New York City. My career experiences include work as an award-winning documentary producer, television news reporter, photographer, producer, and anchor. I worked at WIBW-TV, Topeka, KS., KCTV, Kansas City, MO, WKBD-TV, Detroit, MI., WILX-TV, Lansing, MI. and WBNS-TV, Columbus, OH. I have also worked as a contributing reporter for The Columbus Dispatch, Associated Press, CBS, CNN, the Ohio News Network and lecture at the Kosovo Institute of Journalism and Communications. I have a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas and a master’s degree in telecommunications management from Michigan State University.
This entry was posted in education, Environment, nebraska, The United States, Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Lunar eclipse offers a glimpse of hope

  1. An extraordinary photo to capture an equally extraordinary event!

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