Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Weekend Philosopher: Cosmic Place and Perspective

I'm a big fan of the cosmic perspective.  It's amazing how your perspective shifts when you go from looking at how you fit into your family, then into your community, then into your country, then into your world, and finally, into the cosmos as a whole.  Many people report a feeling of insignificance when they stop to think of how enormous the universe is.

Yet many of those who've lived in the cosmic experience don't succumb to terrible feelings of insignificance.  Take this quote from Carl Sagan.

Image By NASA, ESA, K. France (University of Colordo, Boulder), and P. Challis and R. Kirshner (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
I love these words because they remind me of one of my most important philosophies of life. Though I may disagree with others, I try to appreciate the differences that make us unique.  There is no reason we cannot get along.  We simply need to remain humble and recognize that the way we live our own life is not the only way.  It is not necessarily the right way.  It is simply the right way for us, as we are at this point in time and space.  As long as we try to treat others with respect and look at them as the unique, precious beings that they are (even if we may not enjoy spending time with them on a personal level), we can make our own home in the cosmos a better place.  We all have something special to contribute to the world.

Remember, we all come from the same building blocks of life.  We are all part of this grand thing we know as the universe.

I think this video encapsulates how I feel when I look at the night sky, and it does so in a far more eloquent way than I feel capable of at this moment.  So watch and enjoy!

When you look at the cosmos, do you feel small, or do you feel large and connected with all you see?  What's your unique perspective?


  1. I feel connected, definitely, but that may be due to my being a Pagan. We tend to think all energy is connected into a giant networked consciousness.

  2. I feel small, and yet I know God views me as just as important as the largest galaxy.
    That is so true that each one of us is unique, and when one dies, an incredible lifetime of memories, experiences, and dreams is lost.

  3. I'm usually just awestruck. Regardless of one's beliefs, the universe is so massive and so amazing.

    And I always enjoy listening to Neil deGrasse Tyson. I'd love to meet him in person one day. I will have the chance to see Dr. Michio Kaku in person next month though. So looking forward to that!

  4. Wait, you lost me on that quote "if a human disagrees with you, let him live"

    As opposed to WHAT?

    Driving a stake through his left eye socket?

    Also I find the word choice of "human" very interesting. So if a dog disagrees with you it's ok to kill then??

    I mean seriously, did I miss something here??