I put my hand on the stone pillar and thought of the magnitude of what transpired at that very spot and how it changed the world forever. My thoughts then drifted to my first trip to Hiroshima and the connection between the two places.

I remembered how some of the Manhattan Project scientists joked about setting the atmosphere on fire and in my head, I could hear Oppenheimer quoting the Bhagavad Gita. (4, 5) I looked down at my feet and saw the green glint of Trinitite on the ground. (6) I often collect rocks and shells from my travels but resisted the urge to take some from this site, as it is, in fact, illegal. It makes sense — those stones belong there, hundreds of tiny reminders of humankind’s determination to master the universe.