Chapter 14— Colliding Galaxies

Colliding Galaxies
Had no idea that our Milky Way Galaxy was on a collision course with our neighboring Andromeda Galaxy. While writing the poem "Geese Playing Chicken: V-Formation Collisio" (10-8-2012), came across "Andromeda on collision course with the Milky Way" (By Ron Cowen, Nature, May 31, 2012). Read New Yok Times article (By Dennis Overbye, May 28, 2014) "Andromeda and the Milky Way:
A Merger of Galactic Proportions"— The Milky Way & Andromeda are the dominant members of a small family of galaxies known as the Local Group. Whereas the universe is expanding and galaxies are generally getting farther and farther away from one another with time, the galaxies in the Local Group are bound together by family ties in the form of their mutual gravity. Our relatives aren't going anywhere. Andromeda and the Milky Way are actually heading toward each other in the do-si-do that constitutes life in a galaxy cluster. Recent measurements with the Hubble Space Telescope have confirmed that they will hit head on in about two billion years. Since galaxies, like atoms, are mostly empty space, they will pass through each other like ghosts, but gravity will disrupt the stars and strew them across space in gigantic spectacular streamers. Eventually they'll merge into a single giant galaxy.

Our neighbor Andromeda Galaxy with
trillion of stars is twice the Milky Way
and they'll collide in four billion years.

Andromeda Galaxy

Milky Way Galaxy

Sun orbits Milky Way Galaxy in 230 million years

Andromeda & Milky Way Collision
Our universe is 14 billion years old with 200 billion galaxies. Milky Way is 13.2 billion years old with 300 billion stars. Our solar system, with the Sun and planets, is about 2/3 of the way out from center of the Galaxy. The Sun is a middle-aged star, formed about 4.57 billion years ago from the collapse of part of a giant molecular cloud that consisted mostly of hydrogen and helium. It does not have enough mass to explode as a supernova. Instead, in about 5 billion years, it will enter a red giant phase and fade as a white dwarf over many billion of years.
Our nearest spiral galaxy, the Andromeda Galaxy (Video) has a trillion stars. It is twice the
size of the Milky Way Galaxy, and 2.5 million light years from Earth. The two galaxies are expected to collide in 3.75 billion years, eventually merging to form a giant elliptical galaxy.
Photo Sources: Andromeda (; Milky Way (; Sun Orbiting Milky Way (; Collision Scenario (

Computer simulations show stars inside
each galaxy are so far apart that the two
galaxies will form a giant elliptical galaxy.
So when World Souls collide, they'll not
destroy each other but merge in love as One.

Andromeda Galaxy & Milky Way Galaxy
will come in collision in 3.75 billion years

Andromeda stretched & Milky Way warped
as they come together in 4 billion years

Andromeda & Milky Way merged to form
huge bright elliptical galaxy in 7 billion years

Our Milky Way Galaxy will collide with its neighboring Andromeda Galaxy 3.75 billion years from now. It is likely the sun will
be flung into a new region of our galaxy, but our Earth and solar system are in no danger of being destroyed. The solution came through painstaking NASA Hubble Space Telescope measurements of the motion of Andromeda, which also is known as M31.
The galaxy is now 2.5 million light-years away, but it is inexorably falling toward the Milky Way under the mutual pull of gravity between the two galaxies and the invisible dark matter that surrounds them both. Although the galaxies will plow into each other, stars inside each galaxy are so far apart that they will not collide with other stars during the encounter. However, the stars will be thrown into different orbits around the new galactic center. Simulations show that our solar system will probably be tossed much farther from the galactic core than it is today. It is amazing that when the two galaxies come in collision, they form the Platonic Lambda Λ— shape of Plato's "World Soul". Since each soul is assigned to a star (Plato's Timaeus 41c), we may compare the galactical collision of Andromeda and the Milky Way as collision between World Souls. Computer simulations from Hubble Space Telescope data show that stars within these two galaxies will not destroy each other but merge as one huge elliptical Galaxy with bright core dominates the nighttime sky.
Photo Sources: Andromeda-Milky Way Collision (; Andromed Stretched & Milky Way Warped (; Galaxies Merged (

Postage Stamps Showing Andromeda & Milky Way Galaxies

Barbados 737, 75 cents
Andromeda Galaxy
(issued 11-28-1988)

Mexico 776, 10 centavos
Andromdea Galaxy
(issued 2-17-1942)

Canada 3103
Milky Way Galaxy
(issued 6-29-2018)

Andorra 653, 0.56 Euro
Mlky Way Galaxy?
(issued 5-2-2009)
Note: Above stamps were located in Google Images, The Scott catalogue #s and dates of issue were found at, and downloaded from the web. Click on stamp catalogoe # for image sources.

Platonic Lambda Λ in Creation and Destruction

Platonic Lambda in Creation

Colliding Galaxies in Destruction

Finnegans Wake, II.293
The Platonic Lambda, "Soul of the Universe", is the sum of the double & triple interval series (Timaeus 35b):
1+2+4+8 = 15 and 1+3+9+27 = 40. It's interesting that Plato says that God created the Soul before matter in the Lambda Λ shape. So when I saw the Lambda Λ shape in the colliding galaxies of Milky Way & Andromeda, Buddha's vision of the cyclical universe came to mind, that the end resembles the beginning and are connected.
Without beginning or end, without sides or corners, the circle is a symbol of the Soul, unity, eternal and infinite. When two circles intersect, they form the vesica piscis, almond-shaped mandorla— Eye of the Soul. James Joyce ends his most important chapter in Finnegans Wake at page 216, since 216 is the product of the last numbers in the Platonic Lambda 8 and 27. Joyce writes of "Plutonic loveliaks twinnt Platonic yearlings—" (292.30-31), and borrows
a Vesica Piscis diagram (293.12-14) from Commentary on Euclid's Elements by the Neoplatonist Proclus (412-485 AD). The intersection of two circles forms an almond-shaped mandorla often associated with Christ and Pisces (Sign of the Fish). The lower triangle (ALP) stands for the mother's initials Anna Livia Plurabelle, signifying the Lower World (Plutonic or Hades), while the upper triangle (αλπ) stands for the Higher World (Platonic Lambda or "World Soul" with the transcendental number π on top).

  — Peter Y. Chou
      Mountain View, 12-20-2020