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Discussing Carl Sagan's "Pale Blue Dot"

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posted on Sep, 8 2016 @ 02:36 PM
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I'm sure that many of you have read or watched Carl Sagan's excerpt on our existence here on Earth titled "Pale Blue Dot". When Voyager 1 passed Saturn, it took a photograph of the Earth approximately 3.7 billion miles away and inspired Sagan's passage. If you have not, here is the link youtu.be...

I have seen this video many times before. This particular time I experienced two distinct emotions. One of unfathomable gratitude that I am able to experience this existence. The other of complete and utter confusion.

I have been practicing meditation, mindfulness and just generally working on inner peace for almost 5 years now. There is always one thing that I have never been able to grasp, which is greed. I'm not talking about greed as in petty greed, like two siblings fighting over who has the most toys. I am talking about greed that seems to be setting the course for our current situation here on the planet, a course of unsustainability and destruction. The type of greed that drives a single person or group of people to completely alter the way of life for individuals all the way up to an entire civilization. This has never made sense to me and I still cannot seem to pick it apart.

Who, what or why would such an obviously (at least to me) destructive way of treating each other, this ecosystem and ultimately this planet be tolerated by those doing it and those around them? How can this still be perpetuated when the inevitable outcome is so seemingly clear? I feel like I am not a very naïve person. I know things like money, power, control, etc. are all very obvious reasons towards greed but at what cost and how much is enough? The way things are going I feel like there will be nothing left to be greedy over!

I don't really know what I'm getting at here. I hope this will open up a discussion that may give me an "ah ha!" moment, or at least spark some interesting conversation. Thank you!




posted on Sep, 8 2016 @ 02:42 PM
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Your video is not working.. Here it is..



posted on Sep, 8 2016 @ 02:52 PM
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Thank you sir!
a reply to: Misterlondon



posted on Sep, 8 2016 @ 03:18 PM
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As for greed: realize that nobody gets to take their stash with them when they check out.

As for the ecosystem: it knows how to take care of itself ... and given time ... it will do just that.



posted on Sep, 8 2016 @ 03:21 PM
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a reply to: MrBlasphymy

A lot of people have heard the words "pale blue dot" and haven't heard the context. Or they've seen the image and don't know who the heck Sagan was. Here's the full Monty:


“Look again at that dot. 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 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. 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.

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, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space


We're not here for long and our individual lives might not amount to much in the scheme of things. We might also be the only island of sentient life in this galaxy and that makes all of our lives special.




There is always one thing that I have never been able to grasp, which is greed. I'm not talking about greed as in petty greed, like two siblings fighting over who has the most toys. I am talking about greed that seems to be setting the course for our current situation here on the planet, a course of unsustainability and destruction. The type of greed that drives a single person or group of people to completely alter the way of life for individuals all the way up to an entire civilization. This has never made sense to me and I still cannot seem to pick it apart.


There's a reassurance in your thoughts. We've been led by groups and individuals since the birth of city states. All the way through, we've lurched or stumbled into times of progress and conflict. Roman ships up the River Thames and Greeks ruling Egypt. Conquistadors in the Americas and Mongols in China.

I find reassurance because we're still here. So many populations and cultures have feared their ends and they're all gone. We'll be gone one day and someone else will be repeating your thoughts and this conversation.

It's an uncomfortable thing to consider - it's conflict that drives us.



posted on Sep, 8 2016 @ 03:33 PM
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originally posted by: Kandinsky
a reply to: MrBlasphymy

I find reassurance because we're still here. So many populations and cultures have feared their ends and they're all gone. We'll be gone one day and someone else will be repeating your thoughts and this conversation.

It's an uncomfortable thing to consider - it's conflict that drives us.



Thank you for my "Ah ha!" moment



posted on Sep, 8 2016 @ 03:35 PM
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To be honest we all have the potential to be greedy
To want more of what we do not need

Once we see the consequences of our actions we have the oppurtunity to change our ways
Greed can cause ill health of both mind and body
Yet some fail to take responsibility for their own actions
Expecting others to sort their problems out for them

Some are selfish and care little for others or the environment ... a hard fact
But would you want to trade places with such a one

All you can do is be the best person you can as such you will become an example to others less fortunate
I say less fortunate because greed is a lack of understanding



posted on Sep, 8 2016 @ 03:38 PM
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a reply to: Kandinsky

Saw your post after I posted
Well said ... You nailed it



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