What the Eclipse Reveals about Mary

The earth cannot survive without the sun, not only does it provide light and the possibility of nourishment, the entire world revolves around it. Without the sun, life could not be sustained.

Did you know, this is also true of the moon? According to Scientific American, life may owe it’s very origins to the moon.

Now, Scripture is full of imagery describing Jesus as the sun:

If Jesus is the sun, who brings light and life to the earth, then who is the moon? The moon, though by no means is as powerful as the sun, is also critical for sustaining life on the planet. We need the moon.

Without the moon:

  • Nights would be much darker.
  • Lunar tides would be much lower and less nourishment would wash ashore
  • The rotation of the earth would speed up, meaning our days would be much shorter.
  • The tilt of the earth would change often, making it either extremely hot or extremely cold.
  • There would be no total solar eclipses

In light of Catholicism, the only possible person who can fit this role is Our Lady. We need Mary.

  • As you know, the light of the moon is not actually a production of the orb itself; it’s a reflection of the light of the sun. Within Catholicism, this aligns perfectly with our understanding of Mary. Mary’s light is not her own… it’s a pure reflection of the Son. She brings light into the dark world.
  • The life she gives also comes from Christ. As our Mother, given to us by Christ on the cross,  Mary provides spiritual nourishment, just as the tides bring vitamins to the seashore.
  • Her “yes” lengthened our days, making it possible for our relationship with the “Son” to last for eternity
  • Imitating sinless Mary keeps us “stable”, ensuring we don’t burn in sin or grow cold due to apathy.
  • Like an eclipse, Mary allows us to “view” and better understand the Son

In light of today’s solar eclipse, I’d like to expand on this last point. Eclipses are a big deal for astronomists. The sun can be difficult to study. As you know, looking directly at it can cause a loss of vision. Even with the right equipment, the same is true for scientific research. The sun is simply too brilliant.

Eclipses make the process of gathering this information easier. While the moon moves into alignment between the sun and the earth, the majority of the sun is hidden from view. At this time, scientists are able to make observations about the edges of the sun that they wouldn’t be able to make if the sun was shining in all its glory. Simply by studying the edges, they can gather knowledge of the sun’s surface. This reveals much to us, not only about the sun, but about earth and the entire solar system.

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Just as the moon makes understanding the sun possible, Mary does this for us as well. Through her “yes,” she brought the Son into the world, making it possible for us to know things about God, life, and our very souls that we would not have known otherwise. God, in all his brilliance, is much too glorious for us to try to comprehend on our own. However, Mary “moved into alignment” with God’s will and thus revealed Christ, the “surface,” to us. Mary made eternal life possible– not by any power of her own (it was all God’s power that caused the Incarnation and of course, conquered the grave) but simply by her “yes.” She gave God permission to work through her.  Thanks to Our Lady, we are enlightened about the glories of God.

Mary is truly the eclipse of our spiritual life.

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