The Hand of God?

Hand of God Nebula

An absolutely amazing image captured by NASA’s orbiting ‘Chandra’ X-Ray observatory which appears to show a cosmic hand reaching towards a fiery cloud. What it really shows is the image of a nebula surrounding a young pulsar star.

The hype this image caused is reminiscent of the hype surrounding the picture of the Helix Nebula compiled from images from the Hubble telescope in 2004 and popularly dubbed as ‘the eye of God’.

Eye of God

It seems with these two images that scientists are thus beginning to build up a picasso-esque image of what God may look like, though admittedly at the minute what the picture resembles most closely is a blue-handed cyclops with no discernable face.

Setting aside such an awesome deity for a minute, it is interesting to consider (or at least I find it interesting), that some people will chose to interpret these images as evidence for divine activity in the cosmos. This might seem to some like a natural conclusion but to me that would just be the cosmic version of seeing the Virgin Mary in a piece of toast. Rather than a divine hand tinkering with the universe what this image illustrates to me most clearly is that our brain’s have an extraordinary propensity to seek out the familiar even in an entirely unfamiliar and breathtaking sight.

The natural beauty and mystery of the cosmos should be the most amazing aspect of this incredible image but instead my limited ape brain is at this very moment, just like everyone else’s, more intent on focusing on the image it’s hard-wired to recognise as belonging to something human-like. Maybe it’s a good thing that robots will rule the world one day as presumably they won’t much care if a swirling nebula looks a bit like a hand and can get on with the business of discovering the mysteries of the universe. Maybe not though… maybe they will be too busy discussing the latest image of a cosmic pentium chip.

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22 comments

  1. Beautiful pics, id imagine the real hand and eye of God would be more magnificent. I wonder if the hand is good at armwrestling. lol

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  2. pretty cool.. I look at science as a god of sorts. Through the many unexplained things we see today, we can achieve anything.

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  3. this is amazing
    i believe in god and everything he does is correct
    i am the pastor of a church in boston
    and all i have to say is amen.
    this is the true beauty of god :)
    Hail the almight lord

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  4. I agree with you that it is just stupid for people to see these nebulae as physical manifestations of God. It wreaks of ignorance. That’s not to say that the beauty and intricacy of the universe doesn’t leave the observer with a sense (strong for some than others) that there is intelligence behind the (dare I call it) design and creation of the universe.

    The closest we ever came to seeing God was when he sent his son, Jesus the Christ, to walk among us. He sent him for a reason. In the early days of mankind, man had an intimate relationship with God. But this communion was destroyed when man sinned. God is sinless and cannot tolerate sin. And so man was separated from God.

    From that moment onward, God began preparing a way to heal the broken relationship. He could not simply ignore our sin because by his very nature, he is a just God. But as a loving God, he sought to redeem mankind to himself.

    To accomplish this, he sent his son, Jesus Christ, into the world. He lived among us, fully God and fully man. Yet he never sinned. He was so infinitely righteous that he was able to swallow up all of the sin of those who place their hope in him. And so he was crucified and sacrificed for us and God’s punishing wrath was poured out upon him and the record of our sins was washed away.

    Three days after his death, he rose from the grave, scorning the shame of death, defeating it forever. By believing in him and trusting that he took our sins upon himself, we can once again enter into an intimate relationship with God.

    This is difficult if not impossible to understand or explain in human terms, but that does not make it untrue. We were meant to love God, glorify him, and enjoy his companionship. By trusting Christ for salvation and restoration, we can, once again, enter in to this peaceful state of existence. I am not ashamed of Jesus Christ or the Gospel. He is my best friend, my hero, my savior, and the greatest man I’ve ever met.

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  5. This is my absolute favorite picture that I’ve ever seen.

    It is just so AWSOME, AMAZING, ALMOST SCARY picture. But, of course I loved it. Anyway, what I was trying to say was that I really enjoy this picture. Remember all who see this page, God and Jesus both love you all so much. And remember He is coming soon!Oh and always read the Bible.

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  6. WT the fake tihs image is………….. god is on e & he has power …….. to finish GOOGEL;;;;; understand UUUUU idiots

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  7. This is not the hand of god, but this is his mockery to the scientist who believes there’s no god

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  8. Lucifer is an intellectual and articulate being that surpasses the intelligence of Human Beings, yet he Believes in God and trembles in his presence…….

    Atheism is a principle the Lucifer espouses, but doesn’t personally practice.

    On the Day of Reckoning, Atheism will give way to Epiphany, Agnostics will finally have Evidence, but the time to Reconcile their Animosity toward God will have Expired…..

    I personally refuse to believe in the existence of an Atheist, but I think their angst toward God is the result of the breakup of their parents, a tragic loss, mistreatment by others, Hypocrisy by people that are not even True Christians to begin with, the Injustice of Life….all which somehow must be all God’s fault.

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  9. The LORD truly is amazing. to all those out there, I want to share these verses from the Bible with you: “Is not God in the height of heaven? And behold the height of the stars, how high they are!”-Job 22:12;
    “Behold even to the moon and it shineth not; yea, the stars are not pure in His sight.”-Job 25:5;
    “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingertips, the moon and the stars which thou hast ordained…”-Psalm 8:3;
    “He telleth the number of the stars; He calleth them all by their names.”-Psalm 147:4
    To God alone be the Glory! Soli Deo Gloria!

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