The Dolphin Chronicles: Mis-measure of Time

I started the day by wishing my dolphin friend "Happy New Year". He just laughed at me! He asked me why in the world would we humans think today is the beginning of the new year, as everybody knows the new year begins when the sun crosses the ecliptic on the first day of spring. 

I then told him this was the beginning of a new millennium. He corrected me and informed me there was no year zero in human history, so therefore the millennium by our own accounting would actually start in 2001. 

He laughed at our silly human reckoning of cycles and how short sighted they truly are. Actually, he really thought it was funny how seriously we take these milestones to be, when even by our own accounting they are seriously flawed. 

The dolphin began his morning by telling me the Sun rises in the constellation we call Sagittarius today. That is to say if you were to look beyond the glare of the sun you would see the constellation of Sagittarius behind the sun. However, if you were born today you would be called a Capricorn. How is this so? 

There is a wobble to our Earth as she rotates on her axis. It is called the "Procession of the Equinoxes". When the heavens were named, the stars were not where they are now. The reason why is simple. The Earth slowly wobbles on its poles. Evidently this is something that all dolphins know, but I never knew until now. Our north star is currently Polaris, but it hasn't always been, and it won't always be. 

If our species had navigated the oceans using the stars for over 350 million years as the dolphins have, we would know what they know. 

The wisdom of the ancients is in the naming of the stars and setting their meanings. This was done many millennia ago. Only the wise would know; if you see the moon rising in front of Scorpio tonight, its sign or meaning is actually Capricorn. This is how far the stars have fallen from their places since the names were given. 

The dolphin told me our cycles are extremely short compared to the true depth of time and space. But that is another lesson!

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