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Christian Osipov
Christian Osipov

And It Was Morning . ((FREE))



God said 'Let the land produce,' so a strictly literal reading of evening-and-morning into that passage would lead us to believe that the seeds from all the different kinds of plants and trees produced abundant vegetation between evening and morning of one particular day. Obviously, this is not a sensible interpretation because we know that seeds do not germinate, grow and produce abundant vegetation overnight.




And it was morning .



I have always been in awe of "morning people." You know, the people who actually enjoy getting up early and starting their days with wholesome things like a home-cooked breakfast, or a meditation session, or a workout that starts at 6 A.M. I love sleep, and have always tried to maximize the number of hours I can stay in bed. It doesn't help that I am constantly tired , no matter how long I've slept. But I can't help but wonder what my days would be like if I could consistently get up super early and get things done. So, I volunteered to try it.


I'm lucky in that I don't have any responsibilities that would actually necessitate my waking up before the sun rises, like a baby or an early-starting job or a dog. So this experiment was definitely one of leisure, just to see if it made a noted difference in my day. I was hopeful that having extra time in the morning would make me more productive during the day, and that knocking out some tasks in the morning would give me more errand-free leisure time at night.


Before embarking on my quest, I spoke to sleep expert and clinical psychologist Michael Breus Ph.D., a fellow of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, who offered some tips for an easy wakeup. He recommended a regular bedtime, and urged me to make sure I got plenty of light and water first thing in the morning.


At 5:58 A.M. I woke up to my fiancé poking me in the side and growling unintelligibly. My phone had fallen under the bed sometime during the night and the loud alarm sounds it was making were a truly hideous start to a dark, humid morning. I peeled myself out of bed and went to a HIIT class that was truly beyond my capabilities. I would rate my Monday morning at about a 3/10 for enjoyment.


This day was an absolute cheat, because I had a 7 A.M. flight to catch, which necessitated leaving our apartment at 4:45.A.M. By the time six rolled around, I was drinking a mimosa and feeling great about it. I chalked this up to a win. And then I spent five hours of the flight sleeping, which is maybe not a win when it comes to this whole morning-person thing.


On the positive side, on thing I did enjoy was stepping outside each afternoon to enjoy the sunshine and walk around for a little while. I hope to make that a regular habit. But the rest of it... sucked. I was sleepy and irritable all the time. The only time I saw my fiancé was when I woke him up to say goodbye to him in the morning or rushed him home to deal with vermin. It turns out that it does make a difference to my day what time I get up, no matter how early I go to bed the night before. Those extra hours awake in the morning weren't helpful to me, they just made me sleepier and slower at work, and next to useless in the evenings.


For those of you who can make this morning person thing work, I wholeheartedly salute you. Eventually, the day will come when I have real-life responsibilities necessitating an early wakeup call. Until then, I'll be making the most of my A.M. snooze time.


Originally, the terms "morning star" and "evening star" applied only to the brightest planet of all, Venus. It is far more dazzling than any of the actual stars in the sky and does not appear to twinkle. Instead, it glows with a steady, silvery light. The fact that Venus was a wandering star soon became obvious to ancient skywatchers, who noticed its shifting back and forth from the early hours of the eastern morning sky to the western sky in the early evening. Nicolas Camille Flammarion, a noted French astronomer in the late 19th and early 20th century, referred to Venus as "The Shepherd's Star." I myself like to refer to Venus as the "night light of the sky." So, one can readily understand the origin of the terms evening and "morning star" if we only considered Venus.


Of course, Venus is not the only wandering "star" in the sky; there are four others that are also visible to the unaided eye (five, if you include Uranus, which is barely perceptible without any optical aid on dark, clear nights). The difference is that, with the possible exception of Jupiter and, on rare occasions, Mars, none of the others stands out in the same manner as Venus. Nonetheless, somewhere in the distant past, "morning star" and "evening star" became plural in order to account for the four other planets.


It is quite understandable to see why the definitions of "morning star" and "evening star" can be confusing. Sometimes, for instance, we might see a bright planet like Jupiter shining brilliantly just above the eastern horizon in the evening. Within an hour or so, it has climbed well up into the eastern sky. "Ah!" you might say, "Jupiter certainly makes for a fine evening star." As the night wears on, Jupiter attains its highest point in the southern sky after midnight, and it will still be visible, sinking in the western sky at dawn. The giant planet is thus ideally situated for observations of its changing cloud bands and four big Galilean moons for much of the night.


The fact that Jupiter is already above the horizon during normal evening hours seemingly should qualify it for "evening star" status. But the distinction between these terms is not very precise, for yet, by the same reasoning, it is still considered strictly a "morning star."


So, in general, when either of these planets has a western elongation from the sun it is a "morning star"; with an eastern elongation it is an "evening star." When they are aligned more-or-less with the sun as seen from our Earthly perspective, they will make the transition from evening to morning or vice versa:


When Mercury or Venus is passing between the sun and Earth, we say they are at inferior conjunction and go from being categorized as "evening stars" to transitioning to "morning stars." When the alignment is such that they appear roughly on a line beyond the far side of the sun as seen from Earth, we then say that they are in superior conjunction; that is when they make the switch from being considered "morning stars" to "evening stars."


An interesting analogy is to consider being a spectator at a motor speedway or racetrack and watching a race between two cars. If we consider for a moment that the two cars represent Mercury and Venus, and that the starting point was on that side of the track closest and directly in front of you (with an imaginary sun at the middle of the track), then that could also be considered as the point of inferior conjunction. As the two cars pull away from you and veer off to the right, they would simulate the changing positions of Mercury and Venus as "morning stars"; they would appear speed away to the right (west) of the sun in the sky, and as such would appear to rise before the sun.


Still, as we have already seen, the branding of a morning versus evening object might get a bit confusing, particularly in the few weeks leading up to opposition, when a superior planet is rising only an hour or two after sunset and is already well-placed for observation at a convenient evening hour and yet is still considered a "morning" star. This is particularly true during the wintertime when the sun sets rather early in the evening. If a planet like Mars, does not emerge above the eastern horizon until an hour or two after sunset, it will still be branded as a "morning star" even though it is shining brightly for all to see during convenient prime-time evening hours!


On the race track, our car would always be chasing, overtaking and ultimately leaving the slower cars that are representing the superior planets behind. They would all be positioned on the outside of the track, to our right. And because of this perspective, when a superior planet is on the far side of the track as seen by us (and becomes aligned with the sun), the more rapid motion of our Earth causes the slower planet to appear to drop back toward the sun in our evening sky until it arrives at solar conjunction. Then several weeks later it emerges back into view in the morning sky, rising before sunrise.


Interestingly, when they are passing behind the sun, the inferior planets appear to move from right to left, transitioning from the morning to the evening sky. But for the superior planets, it is just the opposite: They appear to move from left to right when making the transition from the evening into the morning sky.


If an Israelite touched a dead body and was unclean, they were unclean until evening. For the Israelite, the next day started not when you woke up or at our traditional midnight, but at evening. Sabbath begins not Saturday morning but Friday night.


What areas of your life do you need to freshly give over to Jesus so that He can transform it, making you more like Himself in thought, word, and deed? Would you allow Jesus to take the erev areas of your life and bring forth boker? Will you go from evening to morning?


I can imagine that Oprah's alarm-free policy isn't very practical for those who have to go to school, work, or certain appointments early in the morning. Fortunately, I work from home and don't have a super strict schedule.


But taking him on a walk first thing in the morning was a bit of an adjustment for me. My husband is normally the one that takes him out for early walks since I work from home and spend plenty of time with him during the day.


I actually really enjoyed kicking off my day by reading inspiring messages instead of mindlessly scrolling through social media, which can feel chaotic and stressful even on a relaxing weekend morning.


Peggy Anderson, a Swedish American photographer, has been photographing the ritual for nearly ten years. Growing up, she spent many summers in Sweden with her grandparents and other relatives. There, she would often participate in the morning dip herself. 350c69d7ab


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