Far away in the heavenly abode of the great god Indra, there is a wondrous net which has been woven by the cunning artificer, much like a spider’s web in its intricacy and loveliness upon which clings drops of dew.
In accordance with the extravagant tastes of deities, the net is hung in such a manner that it stretches out infinitely in all directions, and the artificer has placed a single glittering jewel in each vertex of the net. And since the net itself is infinite in dimension, the jewels are infinite in number. The jewels, glittering as stars of the first magnitude, hang there, suspended in the net, a dazzling sight to behold.
In the polished surface of each multifaceted jewel are reflected all the jewels that surround it, on and on into infinity, so that all the jewels are connected through their mutual reflections.
And thus we see the interconnectedness of the cosmos, and how a change in one jewel can be reflected on into infinity, and affect the whole.
The metaphor of Indra’s Net is from the Buddhist Avatamsaka Sutra, for which there is a stunning corollary in modern astro physics….
Illuminating the Void: Astronomers Observe Cosmic Web Filament Between Galaxies for First Time
By analyzing the light from a distant quasar, a team of astronomers has made the first direct observation ever of one of the largest of structures in the Universe: a cosmic web filament.
Decades of observations have shown the Universe’s structure to be hierarchical in nature. Stars are grouped together to form galaxies, which in turn form clusters and superclusters, and those superclusters are grouped together to create filaments—long threads of matter running through intergalactic space, interspersed with gigantic spaces of empty void. All the matter and energy in the Universe can be traced inside these filaments, creating a structure that observed from afar can be described as a cosmic “web.”
Spooky Galaxy Web Reveals the Largest Structures in the Universe
“The first odd thing we noticed was that some of the quasars’ rotation axes were aligned with each other — despite the fact that these quasars are separated by billions of light-years,” study leader Damien Hutsemékers, from the University of Liège in Belgium, said in the same ESO statement.”
Hutsemékers and his team also found that the quasars’ rotation axes were linked to what is called the large-scale structure of the universe. Previous studies have shown that galaxies are not distributed evenly throughout the universe. Instead, the large star-filled objects clump together in a web, and this is the large-scale structure of the universe, according to ESO.
Scientists working with the Very Large Telescope found that the rotation of the quasars is parallel to the large-scale structures where the galaxies are found.
“The alignments in the new data, on scales even bigger than current predictions from simulations, may be a hint that there is a missing ingredient in our current models of the cosmos,” team member Dominique Sluse of the Argelander-Institut für Astronomie in Bonn, Germany and University of Liège, said.
…… know that you are a sparkling jewel in Indra’s Net, as is every person around you. Every jewel is connected with all the other jewels in the net; every person is intimately connected with all the other persons in the universe. Each has an independent place within the net and we all reflect and influence each other. A change in one jewel—or person—produces a change, however slight, in every other. Realize, too, that the infinite reflections speak to the illusory nature of appearances. Appearances are not, in fact, reality, but only a reflection; the true nature of a thing is not to be captured in its appearance. However powerful that appearance might be, it is yet only a reflection of what is real.
In addition, whatever you do to one jewel affects the entire net, as well as yourself. You cannot damage one strand of a spider web without injuring the entire web, and you cannot damage one strand of the web that is the universe without injuring all others in it, whether that injury is known or unknown to them. This can work for good or ill because, of course, just as destructive acts affect the entire net, so do loving, constructive, compassionate acts affect the entire net. A single helpful act—even a simple act of kindness—will send positive ripples across the infinite net, touching every jewel, every person in existence.