before leaving on vacation last week, Leonid Elenin left a rather philosophical meditation on the Spaceobs blog. I thought I would share a part of it here:
During the last six months the comet has aroused a lot of interest among the people of the Earth; among the huge number of letters about the end of the world, I also received those about people who became interested in astronomy and observing, who bought telescopes and discovered for themselves the beauty of the night sky. This is possibly the most important effect caused by my comet. Of course the comet poses no threat to the Earth and all the rumors will end when it starts moving away from the Earth and Sun. The same thing happened with the famous comet Hale-Bopp and will be repeated more than once in the future.
I, too, hope that the interest generated in this comet backfires against those who have promulgated malicious rumors and attempted to generate fear. Those who genuinely seek the truth may now be inspired to go out and learn about the night-time sky. Even a simple pair of binoculars can reveal the moons of Jupiter, turn the Pleiades into a glimmering jewel box and uncover the pock marked surface of the Moon. Even a modest telescope can bring the beauty of Saturn's rings into focus, and allow you to feel that you can almost reach out and touch the lunar surface... with some color filters, you can even search for Transient Lunar Phenomena from your own backyard. Anyone can look up at the sky and verify things with their own eyes. No government on Earth can control what you see in the heavens. You cannot hide in Space. If you live anywhere on Earth but North America, you have an ideal opportunity to witness a lunar eclipse tonight, and can verify for yourself that the Sun Moon and heavens continue to keep their rounds.
Comet Elenin - Path and Information - Oct. 2011 - It will be Upon Earth