Week 7 trip “Cosmology and Culture of the Chola” to Tamil Nadu, India

As part of the Yale-NUS Week 7 experiential learning trips, I led a group of 15 students (with Anthropology professor Barney Bate, and Rector Sarah Weiss) on an exploration of the cosmology and culture of India. This included visits to the Vainu Bappu Observatory, home to 2.3-meter, 1.3-meter and 1.0 meter telescopes, and spectacular observing sessions on the roof of our hotel, watching sunrise at the beach, and watching the Milky Way moving over the top of a 1000 year old temple. The mix of the two eternities – the vast cosmic timescales of astrophysics, and the vast extent of time envisioned within Hindu cosmology was breathtaking and life-changing! Here are some photos.

IMG_7734.just.temple IMG_0698.temple.and.milky.way3 IMG_0703.temple.and.milky.way2 IMG_0705.temple.and.milky.way IMG_0714.temple.and.stars temple.and.sky IMG_0986.temple.with.moon IMG_0999.temple.at.sunset IMG_1051.girls.at.templ