Last year at this time I wrote an article about Sputnik and how it changed the world in October 1957. Here is another, with updates and additions, on the verge of the 51st anniversary of that historical event. I know that some teenagers read this site, even though to them Nixon is prehistory so let’s quickly review for the young folks what happened, or what seemed to happen, when Sputnik, the first ever earth satellite, built in Russia, began to orbit the Earth every 96 minutes on October 4th 1957. It had a skin of polished aluminium and was visible from Earth.
Sherlock Holmes fans will know of Irene Adler, the woman in “Scandal in Bohemia,” who was smart enough to outwit Holmes and was always afterwards referred by him as ‘The Woman.’ When asked to name his reward for his part in the case he asked for the photograph of Irene. Incidentally pronounced i–ray-ner, with the i as in sit.
My October looks very busy at the moment so while we are here on the verge of the 50th anniversary of that historical event, let’s quickly review for the young folks what happened, or what seemed to happen, when Sputnik, the first ever earth satellite, built in Russia, began to orbit the Earth every 96 minutes on October 4th 1957. It had a skin of polished aluminium and was visible from Earth.
Earlier this month a sixty two year old student of mine wrote a short appreciation of the Emerald Tablet for me. I was amazed at the new perspectives she brought to it. The Emerald Tablet as most of you will know is a one page summary of the most important principles of alchemy.
I learned it by heart when I began my interest in alchemy at age seventeen. I read it, contemplated it and repeated it at least once every day for ten years or so until I finally got what it meant. When I began my studies in mathematics I thought of the consummate genius Newton, who I knew was one of the last famous alchemists. I got hold of his translation and used that too. So when I read the report of my student I had thought about, read about, and contemplated the Emerald Tablet for sixty years. Her take on it was refreshing and contained all kinds of new dots and perspectives to connect.