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Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair…

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“If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning: just as, if there were no light in the universe and therefore no creatures with eyes, we should never know it was dark. Dark would be without meaning.” C.S. Lewis

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora Borealis by M. Urwiller

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Hinrich Baesmann

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Brendan Alexander

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Terje Nesthus

An aurora (plural: auroras or aurorae) is a natural light display in the sky particularly in the high latitude (Arctic and Antarctic) regions, caused by the collision of energetic charged particles with atoms in the high altitude atmosphere (thermosphere).  In northern latitudes, the effect is known as the aurora borealis (or the northern lights), named after the Roman goddess of dawn, Aurora, and the Greek name for the north wind, Boreas, by Pierre Gassendi in 1621. The aurora australis (or the southern lights), has almost identical features to the aurora borealis and changes simultaneously with changes in the northern auroral zone and is visible from high southern latitudes in Antarctica, South America, New Zealand and AustraliaWikipedia

Like a moth to a flame, I’ve always been drawn to the mystical, colorful glow of the Aurora Borealis also known as the Northern Lights. Something about those dramatic swirls of color pulls me in again and again. Like a lover in an illicit affair, I search for ways to add a shot or two when possible. I’ve written posts where I mentioned or included snapshots of a few, and capturing them on my camera is something I’d add to my things-to-do-in-this-lifetime bucket list.

“I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness because it shows me the stars.” Og Mandino

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by G. Apran Strand

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by S Cook

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Andreas Dichmann

Red Aurora Australis from Alex Cherney on Vimeo.  Article here

I fantasize about traveling to the end of the world to photograph the perfect Aurora Borealis... So, I was quite thrilled when I was listening to the news a day or two ago and there was mention of NASA’s magnificent shots of same. I knew they were heavily invested in exploring space and all the phenomena out in the planets and beyond. But I didn’t expect the same level of exploration of Northern Lights and with galleries full of far ranging spectacular light shows?

“For light I go directly to the Source of light, not to any of the reflections.” Peace Pilgrim

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Chad Blakely

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Peter Rosen

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Aystein Lunde

When I stopped by, I was astonished to find out that they’ve been collecting photos of these magical light shows for a number of years. It is quite an extensive collection and I spent time perusing and enjoying the selections. I’m sharing my favorites from their space gallery collection… call it my northern lights affair. 😉 More Below. 😉

“You must enshrine in your hearts the spiritual urge towards light and love, Wisdom and Bliss!” Sri Sathya Sai Baba

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Jaromir Stanczyk

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by Aystein Lunde

Reflections: A Northern Lights Affair... Aurora by M. Hollingshead

“When you have come to the edge Of all light that you know, and are about to drop off into the darkness Of the unknown, Faith is knowing one of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on or You will be taught to fly” Patrick Overton

It’s a marriage made in the heavens… One might be tempted to see the glowing rays of color as a psychedelic dance between two intoxicated lovers. We can also view them from a spiritual place of awe and reverence; another example of the marvel of creation. However we wish to identify the lights, they are captivating nonetheless. They come in all shades of the rainbow, blending beautifully in the sky, reminding us of nature’s many bounties and how she balances all these aspects of her universe so brilliantly. Enjoy the show!  What are your thoughts? Have you ever seen an aurora borealis? What was your experience? Would you like to visit a location to see some magnificence of nature? What would that be? Do share! Thank you. 😉

Positive Motivation Tip: The light within seeks the delight of the light without… seek wisdom there.

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All Photos of Aurora Borealis, M Urwiller, Chad Blakely, Gpran Strandl, Hinrich Basemann, Jaromir Stranzyl, Steve Cook, M. Hollingshead, Peter Rosen, Andreas Dichmann, Brendan AlexanderAystein Lunde, Terje Nesthus, via NASA/SpaceWeather,  or Wikipedia or via Flickr

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

76 Comments leave one →
  1. 09/02/2012 12:17 am

    Greetings by Flickrcomments on Aurora Borealis.

  2. 09/02/2012 12:28 am

    Oh yes, I’d so love to see it.

    But I am lucky – I have seen Angel Falls, and the Himalayas, and the lakes of New Zealand. Where else will I go – well, there’s swathes of South America I don’t know at all, would live to spend more time in Africa. And yes, the aurora borealis is definitely on the list.

    • 10/02/2012 6:26 pm

      Brilliant and good for you Jo! I stopped by your site but couldn’t find a way to leave a message. Thanks for stopping by. I’ll take a look at your book too. 🙂

  3. 09/02/2012 12:41 am

    They really are stunning, Elizabeth. We do not get to see them, at least I don’t think we do as I never have and I am sure I would have if we could.

    There are many things I would like to see, but one step at a time. 🙂

    • 10/02/2012 6:27 pm

      Well, apparently they can be seen in Australia so your chances of getting to see one is greater. 🙂

      • 10/02/2012 6:29 pm

        When and where and how? Please share! 🙂

      • 10/02/2012 6:32 pm

        I added a video a few minutes ago that was shot in Australia. Check it out. 😉

      • 10/02/2012 6:38 pm

        Wow – really lovely. I’m not sure where that was taken, but obviously not in one of the cities! I’ll have to do some research.

      • 10/02/2012 6:44 pm

        Okay you probably viewed it before I added the article link. It was taken somewhere near Melbourne! Happy sightings! 🙂

      • 10/02/2012 6:55 pm

        No, definitely after you added the link – watched it above!

        I’ve found something about it here

        Sounds like Tasmania is the place to be, every 11 years?? Not sure that is what it means ……. it says:

        The aurora australis is more commonly seen in Australia around the time of maxima in the ~11-year cycle in solar sunspot occurrence. The most recent sunspot maximum occurred in 2000. Tasmania is the Australian state from which the aurora australis is most commonly seen, as it is closest to the normal location of the auroral oval.

    • 10/02/2012 7:01 pm

      There you go! Now make your date with Tasmania… Hopefully well before 11 years it will show its magnificent beauty again. 😉

  4. 09/02/2012 1:12 am

    I have always wanted to see the Northern Lights, perhaps I should add them to my 101/1001 challenge. I will need to research to see the nearest location. Stunning photographs!

    • 10/02/2012 6:29 pm

      TY PiP! They are stunning and I keep discovering more that are breathtaking… Add it to your challenge and you’d probably end up seeing one. I hope to see it too. 🙂

  5. 09/02/2012 2:04 am

    What a beautiful post ! Great work Elizabeth. Photographs, quotes & your writing everything is so wonderful. 🙂 Best wishes to you.

    • 10/02/2012 6:30 pm

      TY Arindam! This was fun to do… The pictures are just so gorgeous. 🙂

  6. 09/02/2012 4:13 am

    Beautiful! And I really like that C.S. Lewis quote.

    • 10/02/2012 6:33 pm

      Me too with C.S. Lewis. It was the perfect quote for the post. What a visionary he was! 🙂

  7. 09/02/2012 4:14 am

    I would love to see the Northern Lights first-hand. Thank you for letting me experience them through this post!

    • 10/02/2012 6:34 pm

      I would love to experience it up-close too; imagine the light show effect? Awesome. 😉

  8. 09/02/2012 4:45 am

    Have never seen the show, though after watching the film Brother Bear I have have sort of awe towards the Lights.. Beautiful pics…

    • 10/02/2012 6:42 pm

      I love lights of all kinds and this is th best of the lot. I’ll check out the film you mentioned. TY! 😉

  9. 09/02/2012 6:16 am

    I love it my friend nice post

  10. 09/02/2012 6:28 am

    I have an early childhood memory of being taken out of my bed at night to see a rare visit of the Lights to Pennsylvania. Hardly remember the show, but it is a loving memory of the family outside on a cold winter’s night.

    The quotes are like Northern lights in my heart. Thank you.

    • 10/02/2012 6:47 pm

      TY Katherine. I bet it was magnificent too; for you to remember it. 🙂

  11. 09/02/2012 6:44 am

    These are so, so beautiful…i too am in love with the northern lights. I heard from a friend who lives in Northern Finland that the lights were very active last december there.

    • 10/02/2012 6:49 pm

      They are beautiful. Yes, a few mentioned that activity was high in the region last winter. Maybe it’s time for you to visit your friend. TY! 😉

  12. 09/02/2012 7:01 am


  13. Bree permalink
    09/02/2012 7:36 am

    Stunning, stunning, stunning! I’m in love with these lights and have added them to my must see in my lifetime list. Awesome post!

    • 10/02/2012 6:50 pm

      TY and I’m in love with those lights too. Must see. 😉

  14. 09/02/2012 9:22 am

    Mother Natures loves to flaunt her beauty, doesn’t she? These photographs are wonderful. I can only imagine how exhilarating the lights must be actually being there to experience them first hand.

    • 10/02/2012 6:52 pm

      I can only imagine too and Mother Nature does have a lot of gifts up her sleeve. 😉

  15. 09/02/2012 9:58 am

    Unbelievably exuberant set of photos of the aurora borealis. I adhere to C.S. Lewis’ tenet that light proves the darkness. How else could we have been able to experience these lights except in darkness?

    • 10/02/2012 6:53 pm

      Exactly. He nailed that one… We need the darkness to see the light… Key is to not stay in the dark and to crave the healing powers of the light. TY! 😉

  16. 09/02/2012 10:19 am

    A wonderful collection Elizabeth, thanks for sharing them. I would love to see them but even if you go there they don’t always perform!

    • 10/02/2012 6:54 pm

      Yes, that is the chance the photogs take when they go searching for them… I’d love to see them too. 🙂

  17. 09/02/2012 10:30 am

    Someday!! I’m sure I would be so awed I wouldn’t be able to photograph it.
    Thanks for the beauty!

    • 10/02/2012 6:55 pm

      Well, lets hope that never happens. You’ll be camera ready and awed at the same time. 😉

  18. 09/02/2012 10:32 am

    I think I saw these lights. One of my last days researching killer whales up on the shores of northern B.C., I was thrilled and awed to see the sky full of greens and crazy, magnificent light. I enjoyed it and wished I had any film yet to capture it, but didn’t think much further on it until now. Magical! As was reading this:
    It’s a marriage made in the heavens…

    When I was younger, I swore I’d never marry. But if I did, I said it’d be under the condition the wedding itself was under the lights of the Aurora Borealis.

    • 10/02/2012 6:56 pm

      Yes, you probably saw them. Also, it is so sophisticated of you to want a light AB wedding. Totally cool. 😎

  19. 09/02/2012 11:25 am

    Great photos to enhance the text. And you quoted two of my favorites C S Lewis and Og Mandino. Thanks for sharing these thoughts.

    • 10/02/2012 6:57 pm

      TY for stopping in Judith. I’m glad you enjoyed the photos and quotes. 🙂

  20. 09/02/2012 12:51 pm

    What a lovely read – and so many stunning pictures. There is something very special about Aurora Borealis, it is indeed so full of mystery. I like your expression: It’s a marriage made in the heavens. Thanks for sharing.

    • 10/02/2012 6:58 pm

      TY for stopping by… It is full of mystery even with the scientific explanations for them Yes, the photos are stunning. 🙂

  21. 09/02/2012 1:28 pm

    I get to see them from time to time where I live in Canada, but not in such the magnificent displays as this. I need to travel to visit my nieces in Inuvik in the North West Territories during the darkness of winter to enjoy this beautify display. Thanks for sharing this glory.

    • 10/02/2012 7:38 pm

      Lucky you. Perhaps it will reveal more color to you one day. Capture some photos for sure. TY! 😉

  22. 09/02/2012 1:49 pm


  23. 09/02/2012 3:52 pm

    I’ve never seen an aurora borealis in person. The photos are amazing! Thank you.

  24. 09/02/2012 4:40 pm


  25. 09/02/2012 4:53 pm


  26. 09/02/2012 4:53 pm

    VERY interesting….

  27. 09/02/2012 8:55 pm

    I’ve never seen the Aurora Borealis, but I would like to! Maybe someday! I need to put it on my wish list!

    • 10/02/2012 7:52 pm

      It’s now on mine. Nice new gravatar of you there Carla! 😉

  28. 09/02/2012 11:09 pm

    These pictures are beautiful! I have never seen the northern lights myself but I would so love to see it 🙂 Someday…

    • 10/02/2012 7:53 pm

      It is apt to happen for you sooner… Those lights are in your region. 🙂

  29. 09/02/2012 11:21 pm

    What an amazing collection on photos! Wow!

  30. 09/02/2012 11:27 pm

    Stunning! I did an photo essay about two years ago on the northern lights in another site, and it also got quite a response. I never tire of looking at photos of this beautiful expression of creation! I hope to one day see the northen lights myself.

    • 10/02/2012 7:55 pm

      I adore them too and find myself drawn to them again and again… TY! 😉

  31. 10/02/2012 12:42 am

    I’ve always thought I would love to see the Northern Lights. Maybe…the photos are stirring! Debra

  32. 10/02/2012 12:50 am

    JUST W-O-W!

  33. 10/02/2012 3:55 pm

    You described them wonderfully…to view them, whether in photos or in person, with awe and reverence…they are so exquisitely beautiful.

    • 10/02/2012 7:57 pm

      They are exquisite. It must be quite the experience to see them up close. 😉

  34. 11/02/2012 1:31 pm


  35. 12/02/2012 8:20 pm

    I would love to see this light show in person…

  36. 12/02/2012 8:37 pm

    Looking at nature is such a humbling experience. What a magnificent show! I haven’t seen an aurora borealis but I know it’d move me. Thanks for sharing, Elizabeth!


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