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Entries in The Universe (2)


Remembering Neil Armstrong

Obviously, being the first person to ever walk on the Moon is an impressive achievement, and upon your death you are bound (and deservedly so) to be remembered greatly for your amazing and historic adventure. However, nothing sums up how truly perilous and daunting a task that the commander of Apollo 11 faced quite like this quote:


So here was Neil Armstrong, harnessed into a cramped little aluminum coffin packed with all the technological computing power of a TI-85 solar-powered calculator, fighting the controls trying to manually place a two-passenger missile packed with jet fuel on the surface of an interstellar object nobody has ever attempted to land on before, and to do it delicately enough that it doesn't crash, fall over, explode, or otherwise bring about the brutally-violent deaths of everyone inside."

Godspeed, Neil.


Earth Day

That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there — on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors, so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.

Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand. It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known."

-Carl Sagan

“We are all connected; To each other, biologically. To the earth, chemically. To the rest of the universe atomically.”

As members of the human race, we call this chunk of rotating rock, fire, and ice home and we should realize how amazing Earth is EVERYDAY, not just April 22nd.

I'm sorry. The sole purpose of this article was for me to find a way to post these witty videos without sounding unintelligent and shortsighted.