Harrison Middleton University
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Rachel Carson

Category: Astronomy

We’re excited that you’ve joined the conversation! At HMU, we want to continue the great authors’ conversations in a contemporary context, and this blog will help us do that. We look back to Aristotle and the early philosophers who used reason and discourse to gain wisdom and now we endeavor to do the same every day.

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May 29, 2020

Thanks to Peter Ponzio, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

The introductory course at Harrison Middleton University is called “The Great Conversation: The Cornerstone Course.” It includes short readings on a wide range of subjects and serves as an introduction to our methods. One of these readings, The Expanding Universe, by Sir Arthur Eddington, is the subject of today’s blog.

In this selection, Eddington made three observations,

 » Read more about: Comments on The Expanding Universe by Eddington  »

October 11, 2019

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

In The Accidental Universe; The World You Thought You Knew, Alan Lightman separates out seven different types of universe. He dedicates each chapter to way of interpreting the universe including things like: accidental, temporary, spiritual and symmetrical. Lightman straddles both the sciences and the humanities, and this book is a sort of creative non-fiction. He explores complex science topics and elaborates his points with examples from both disciplines.

 » Read more about: BOOK REVIEW: The Accidental Universe  »

June 14, 2019

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Ancient history can be a difficult subject for students because it is inherently foreign to them. Not only is there a language difference, but it is genuinely difficult to envision life removed from today’s technologies. When speaking of ancient cities, most people think of ancient Greece or Rome, but today I want to focus on an ancient city of the southwestern United States.

 » Read more about: An Ancient Southwestern Town  »

November 10, 2017

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s blog.

In an attempt to better understand how we orient ourselves in life, I turn to Dante.

In The Divine Comedy, Dante begins nearly every canto by determining his location. This works twofold as it locates the reader as well as the narrator. The reader first meets Dante in a dark wood where he is surprised by a scary and threatening creature.

 » Read more about: Dante’s Position  »

October 13, 2017

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

“The vastness of heavens stretches my imagination… Why do the poets of the present not speak of it? What men are poets who can speak of Jupiter if he were like a man, but if he is an immense spinning sphere of methane and ammonia must be silent?” – Richard Feynman

In 1609, Johannes Kepler published a few surprising details.

 » Read more about: Planets, Planets, Planets  »

July 21, 2017

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Last week we introduced a couple of less than mainstream calendars . This week, we want to move back into a look at the contemporary calendar, as based upon the Roman calendar. Julius Caesar, of course, attended to the discrepancies in the calendar. Astronomers of each age are challenged to find clever fixes for slight discrepancies, which,

 » Read more about: Numa Creates the Calendar  »

June 23, 2017

“The strongest affection and utmost zeal should, I think, promote the studies concerned with the most beautiful objects. This is the discipline that deals with the universe’s divine revolutions, the stars’ motions, sizes, distances, risings and settings…for what is more beautiful than heaven?” – Copernicus

“The cosmos is all that is or ever was or ever will be. Our feeblest contemplation of the Cosmos stir us – there is a tingling in the spine,

 » Read more about: Dazzling Darkness  »

June 16, 2017

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

This is the second of three posts about astronomy. (Last week’s post can be found here.) In today’s post, we will trace a little bit of the ideas and theories behind contemporary astronomy and also introduce a Charles Messier as well as globular cluster (M 5). Today’s image depends upon equipment newly made available to amateur astronomers.

 » Read more about: Globular Clusters  »

June 9, 2017

Thanks to Alissa Simon for today’s post.

In the Syntopicon (Astronomy and Cosmology chapter), Mortimer Adler notes that “Man has used astronomy to measure not only the passage of time or the course of a voyage, but also his position in the world, his power of knowing, his relation to God. When man first turns from himself and his immediate earthly surroundings to the larger universe of which he is a part,

 » Read more about: Astronomy Imaging  »

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