CG 4, commonly referred to as God’s Hand, is a star-forming region located in the Puppis constellation, about 1,300 light-years (400 pc) from Earth. It is one of several objects referred to as « cometary globules« , because its shape is similar to that of a comet. It has a dense head formed of gas and dust, which is around 1.5 ly (0.46 pc) in diameter, and an elongated faint tail around 8 ly (2.5 pc) in length.
The head of cometary globule CG 4 resembles a comet with a dusty cavernous mouth, as photographed by the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope in 2015. Composed of relatively dense, dark matter, it is an opaque structure that is being illuminated by the glow of a nearby star. An obscure red glow limbing the globule is possibly caused by emission from ionized hydrogen. The mouth of the globule appears to be ready to consume the edge-on spiral galaxy ESO 257-19. In reality, the galaxy is over a hundred million light-years further away from the globule.