Look, we know. It's been a rough weekend, and a rough 2018. School shootings are still happening, the Trump administration is still terrorizing immigrant communities, and Planned Parenthood is still under attack. For those of us that exist within the various intersections of our identities — race, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, body type, health/disability, class, occupation, past trauma, etc — it can feel like the weight of the news only compounds the bullshit we deal with on a day-to-day level. Sometimes it can feel like the bright spots are overshadowed by the darker ones, and we feel ourselves tiring out from fighting every day. Those feelings are totally okay.
But one that helps is remembering our commonality as humans. Of course, our personal intersections will always render experiences through power structures, and no situation is truly universal. Which is why, for humans, there really are so few universal truths — and the universe is one of them.
The universe belongs to all of us. We can't see it, we can't visit it, but we know it's there, and we know that something so spectacular exists outside of the grind. For as long as humans have been alive, we've looked to the sky as a source of comfort when life becomes too much to bear. Even if we have nothing else, we still have the stars.
NASA just released several new photos from the Hubble Space Telescope. The images feature spiral galaxies, infant stars, and celestial formations that look like paintings. You can head over to Gizmodo to read about the science behind the photos, but we're encouraging you to just stare at them. Get lost in this beauty, because we deserve to find joy where we can. Take a deep breath and light a candle. On NASA's site these images are available in both zoomable and stunning high resolution, so blow them up on your laptop screen and look at every star. Maybe someone else on our humble little plant is staring at them with you.
(Photos Courtesy of NASA, ESA, and LEGUS)