Thursday, October 27, 2005

Considering the temporal.

I have been thinking about time today. My birthday falls in a few days and I recall a conversation I had about birthdays and the reason why they are not celebrated in the religion of Muhammad. The reason I came up with was that the Islamic year is lunar, not solar, and thus in relation to the movement of the seasons governed by the star at the centre of our system, a birthday calculated by the moon would not be constant (of course in the scheme of the life of a universe, a birthday really is a vanity, but I digress). There is of course another feature of solar years, and that is universally they may also not be constant. Our position in relation to our star is governed by the mass of our planet and the 'size' of the sun, and thus the length of a solar year is directly related to both these factors, and of course the existence of water in its liquid form. Maybe if I ever sail into the sea toward the stars and arrive at a new planet, the inhabitants will smile wryly at my watch saying 'How funny it has 12 numbers.'

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