Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Shadow Knows

There's something about shadows because you make your own mind up about what's lurking in them.

Richard O'Brien
Hello Stuart
Here are four interesting tales about shadows.

In early days philosophers were also mathematicians. The ancient Greek Thales was one of those. He took on the task of determining the height of the great pyramid of Egypt. Because he was a thinker he used a very simple method. He put a staff in the ground and measured its shadow. At the same moment he measured the pyramid's shadow. Just as the pyramid's shadow was so many times the staff's shadow so the pyramid was so many times the height of the staff.

I knew a photographer in New York who once mounted an exhibit of photos which she called self portraits. Intrigued, I went to see it. She had photographed her shadow, up against a wall, on the sidewalk, along a fence. on the grass and various other places. They were fascinating pictures because you wanted to know who the person was that was casting the shadow.

Another photograph I saw in a magazine was of a herd of large animals running across a field. They were clearly very big dark colored beasts in a small herd. But next to each of them was a strange thin wedge of block stripes. Each of these animals had seemingly attached to their sides that streak of black stripes. I stared at the picture for a while and then realized the photograph was taken from directly overhead at dawn or dusk when the sun was low, the stripes were in fact the necks and backs of zebras and the large dark beasts were their shadows.

In another magazine I read about two physicists who were working on an experiment trying to make a solid object so transparent that it would seem to disappear. The worked on the principle of deflecting light rays away from the object on the basis of the inability to see something which does not reflect light. Although the room was lit the object did indeed become transparent. Though it didn't disappear, it become such that they could see thorough it. It almost disappeared. But they noted that the experiment had no effect whatsoever on the object's shadow. That was just as dark as when they started.

He that dwells in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the almighty.

Please check out my newest journal, Hands of the Vagabond at

DB - The Vagabond
Never give up.

1 comment:

Arlene (AJ) said...

Loved your site on "Shadows" DB. Thanks for sharing this with us.