I had a thought the other day, how fast am I moving? We all "know" that the earth rotates about once a day (sometimes it seems faster), exactly how fast is that? Well it turns out to be easy to calculate, according to this website, the earth is about 24,901 miles in circumference, doing a little math tells me that it's a little under 24,000 miles in Greenville, SC.
And don't forget, we're moving around the sun in an orbit once a year (last year seemed very slow to me, maybe it was that leap second?) That's a journey of some 585 million miles according to this site.
So we're spinning at around 1,000 miles per hour and hurling around the sun at just under 67,000 miles per hour. And of course this ignores the fact that our solar system is traveling through the galaxy (thinking about the Milky Way makes me want a candy bar). My question is: Do you believe this 100%
I have to confess that I don't. Oh I accept it. I've been on a plane, the "fact" that the earth is round makes sense to me. I've made models of our solar system, seen the sun rise over the ocean and even seen it set over a different ocean. But somehow the numbers are just mind-boggling.
A couple of my readers will know first hand that I love those tea-cups at Disney World. You're spinning a cup that is on a spinning saucer that is on a spinning plate. You're spinning in three different directions at once. Hopefully, you have a good stomach and the walks of the cup will hold you in.
But what holds us on the earth? Well, you're probably thinking I've lost my mind, gravity of course! But do you believe in gravity 100%? Sure, I took physics in high school and college, I've done all the math and know that all masses have gravity. But if that's true, why aren't I attracted to things around me? I admit, I'm attracted to my wife, but that's a different attraction.
I remember doing the math in high school on gravity and the earth's gravity is so much, that everything else close by pales in comparison. But who measured the earth's mass? And how? did they use a big scale? No wait, scales measure weight, not mass.
By now you're convinced that I've lost my mind. That may be true. But there is an ulterior motive here if you'll be patient. I wasn't up too late last night, and I promise there's a point here. Simply put, how many things in life do you accept as being true without honestly believing 100%? You just accept someone else's word?
Let's think about that for a day and then I'll explain a little more.