Do we see the light from a star that has "died" and, let's say, it would reach Earth many years later, from past? Let's say the light from a star reached Earth, but that star has died long time ago. I am not sure about one thing: is the light only present? I understant that we perceive it later (for example the light that reaches from Moon to Earth, 1.2 seconds later), but that light is present. Can it be called "from past"?


marked as duplicate by Emilio Pisanty, John Rennie, Kyle Kanos, stafusa, Daniel Griscom Nov 2 '17 at 1:38

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Yes, we do indeed see astronomical bodies that might have died by now. We see them as they were in their past. (depending, obviously, on how far they are from us)

An example I can think of would be the Pillars of Creation which almost certainly were destroyed a thousand years ago by a shockwave from a nearby supernova. (This, of course, hasn't been seen yet because the structure is some 7000 light years away from the Earth)

This question will interest you:

Has everything we see happened in the past?


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