The Blood Moon

Look for tonight's blood moon around 2-3 a.m. (Steve Margala/Astronomy for Beginners)

Look for tonight’s blood moon around 2-3 a.m. (Steve Margala/Astronomy for Beginners)

If there are any astronomy buffs in the crowd, then I’m sure you are all preparing for tonight’s lunar festivities—especially if you live in the Americas and don’t mind staying up until the wee hours of the morning.

Starting at around 2 a.m. Tuesday morning, the first of four total lunar eclipses slated for 2014-2015 will begin, resulting in what is known as a Hunter’s Moon or—more commonly—a blood moon. The moon takes on this sanguine hue as it passes through Earth’s shadow, which has been described as being the color of a desert sunset.

In other words, it’s incredibly beautiful, provided you can stay up until 3 a.m. or so. That’s when the moon should be bloody as hell, but sadly, this effect will start to fade roughly an hour later.

The good news is that if you miss tonight’s blood moon, you will get three more chances to see it during what is known as a tetrad—a series of four consecutive lunar eclipses scheduled for April 15th and October 8th of 2014, as well as April 4th and September 28th of 2015. And believe me when I say that tetrads like these are incredibly rare. Some NASA experts equate them to drawing a four-of-a-kind in poker, which any poker player can tell you happens only once in a blue moon… or a red one, for that matter.

Of course, celestial events like blood moons can also lead to Biblical hysteria and prophecy-making… and this event is no exception considering the Book of Revelations 6:12-14 mentions the Hunter’s Moon specifically: “When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, and the stars of the sky fell to earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale.”

Pastors Blitz and Hagee "prophesizing" (Calling the Roll/My Catbird Seat)

Pastors Blitz and Hagee “prophesizing” (Calling the Roll/My Catbird Seat)

Enter the Blood Moon Prophecy, an idea popularized by John Hagee and Mark Blitz, two Christian pastors. Blitz actually came up with this idea in 2008 and has been preaching that the Second Coming of Jesus Christ will occur in 2015—this tetrad, in other words, signals the beginning of the end for humanity. Hagee brought Blitz’s ideas back into the spotlight when he published Four Blood Moons in 2013, only he viewed the tetrad as evidence of some major historical change to come—especially for Israel since tetrads always seem to coincide with important events in Jewish history.

Personally, I see tonight’s blood moon as nothing more than an interesting lunar event worth checking out if you’re awake when it happens. Since I consider myself to be an open-minded person, though, I suppose it’s at least possible it could mean something more—especially if Jesus appears once the tetrad ends on September 29, 2015!

At that point, I would probably be willing to reconsider my religious affiliation… or lack thereof…

Posted on April 14, 2014, in Perspectives and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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