Sunday, July 29, 2007

The Center of Centaurus A

click on image to enlarge

Credit: E.J. Schreier (AUI) et al., HST, NASA

Explanation: A fantastic jumble of young blue star clusters, gigantic glowing gas clouds, and imposing dark dust lanes surrounds the central region of the active galaxy Centaurus A. This mosaic of Hubble Space Telescope images taken in blue, green, and red light has been processed to present a natural color picture of this cosmic maelstrom. Infrared images from the Hubble have also shown that hidden at the center of this activity are what seem to be disks of matter spiraling into a black hole with a billion times the mass of the Sun! Centaurus A itself is apparently the result of a collision of two galaxies and the left over debris is steadily being consumed by the black hole. Astronomers believe that such black hole central engines generate the radio, X-ray, and gamma-ray energy radiated by Centaurus A and other active galaxies. But for an active galaxy Centaurus A is close, a mere 10 million light-years away, and is a relatively convenient laboratory for exploring these powerful sources of energy.


Robguy said...

I don't understand. How can the galaxy be 10 million light years away if God only made the universe 6000 years ago? :p

Stardust said...

robguy, satan is trying to trick us or god is trying to test the believer's faith by allowing the scientists to find and promote false data and self-created evidence. ;) (The latter was a reason I read recently on a comment thread.) (eye roll)

Tommy said...

Yeah, God sure seems to have a lot of free time on his hands to be constantly trying to test us like that! ;-)

Stardust, I have been making the rounds on some fellow atheist blogs. I have a new visitor, who calls himself Bedrocktruth, who wants to know why we atheists feel the need to have our atheists blogs, our atheist books, and to analyze and dissect religious arguments and basically why can't we just be quiet and not ruin things for the religious majority in this country. I already posted my response to him but would like for him to hear from a wide spectrum of atheist bloggers to sufficiently enlighten him.

The title of the post in question is "I'm an Atheist and I'm Proud of it!"

Stardust said...

hi tommy, I responded to bedrockyabbadabbadoobie at your blog.

I responded to the question about why atheist read books, have blogs etc. Since atheists know that they can only count on other humans to get through life, it is logical that we do read other material, and discuss with each other since we don't believe that a supernatural entity exists to chat it up with.

Those questions should really be asked of Christians since atheists rely on people, and that what gets me is that Christians say that their Bible is the whole truth right there in one book -- the word of their god, but need books and books and books upon books, and people upon people, and Bible study classes upon Bible study classes to try to understand their "book of truth". Their god seems to have failed to explain it to them. Then we could add that the latest market for Hollywood are Christians who think that Mel Gibson and others are making movies for Jesus when in actually it is to make money from the suckers of the Christian market who believe it is "divinely inspired" when in actuality it is money-making greed.

Then, don't get me started about the disagreement and rhetorical battles between Christian denominations about which Christians are True Christians and which ones are not. If we put them all into an arena to come to a decision about what is the "true" god belief, we could sit back and watch them battle it out for a thousand years like they've been doing and still come to no agreement. Toss in all the other god botherers of other religions and we will watch some real fun happen.

Another thing that baffles me is that these Christians say that their god is all and everything, but in actuality they must be pretty damned bored waiting for their sky daddy to talk to them since they are surfing the net so much and commenting on atheist blogs instead of spending time in prayer. IMO they deep down know is just pure mythology and human created crutches to get through life's problems and the reality of death. That's why we are so intriguing. They might be wondering how to muster up the courage to just say they don't believe and life is life and shit happens.