Other Worlds

March 20th, 2017

“There are worlds beyond worlds and times beyond times, all of them true, all of them real, and all of them (as children know) penetrating each other.“ P.L. Travers

The discovery by NASA of Trappist 1, a planetary system outside our own, is an instance when science became so magical to me, revealing that there are “worlds” beyond we never dreamed existed. It coincided with a re-reading of The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman, a book/trilogy that reminds me of the fairy tales that made me believe utterly in the impossible as a child. The drudge of daily life and the notion that everything in the world has a rational explanation (the Man in the Moon? Just craters and shadows!) can leach the numinous out of our world view. Theoretically, I should be too old to be entranced and bewitched by fairy tales and unknown worlds like Trappist 1, but I’m so grateful to have that childhood vision restored to me for a bit by the intersection of a beautiful novel and a brilliant scientific discovery. Who knows what else is possible? More than we dream and exactly what we dream, I hope.


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