The Pale Blue Dot

In 1977 Voyager 1, a 722 Kilogram space probe, was launched by NASA to explore the outer solar system. Voyager 1 has performed its task remarkably well, sending back spectacular pictures of Saturn, and Jupiter. As of today it is in the outer Heliosphere and the most distant man made object from earth.

A surprising thing happened when Voyager 1 reached the edge of the solar system in 1990. It was instructed to turn its camera back towards earth and snap some pictures. What it sent back was a stunningly humbling picture of earth seen as a “pale blue dot”. Carl Sagan recorded his thoughts on seeing this picture in this wonderful video:

“From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any particular interest. But for us, it’s different. Consider again 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 “Pale Blue Dot” has become a classic that has been watched by millions. It represents a cry to see in perspective the insignificance of our ego-centered antics in the face of our wider responsibility to each other and to the planet earth.

Related: Pale Blue Dot on Wikipedia with full text of his essay.

You may also like: The View From Space

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Climate Change Needs An Elephant Whisperer

Climate Change needs an Elephant Whisperer

When it comes to climate change — and communicating about it — people seem to lose sight of a simple, longstanding fact about the human mind: It is split into two parts. On one side, there is a rational rider, on the other, an emotional elephant. The rider rationalizes and procrastinates when danger is not imminent, while the elephant, while slow to motivate and hard to steer, eventually takes the correct path and stays the course. Society needs to inspire that elephant, and quickly.

Climate change may be the gravest challenge facing humans, and most other living things. The science is clear, and the debate now focuses on the uncertainties associated with climate projections and the local, regional and global policies needed to adapt to warming — as well as approaches to mitigate the human footprint on the environment.

Climate communication must be an integral part of all efforts to face this daunting challenge. And yet, climate scientists appear to be ill-equipped for this job and lay people are confused, since no clearly defined “to do” list exists for the average person. The race to avert this impending global tragedy of the commons does not seem to have any sense of urgency. Climate change is now obvious thanks to accurate and precise measurements of greenhouse gases, and the increase in the global mean temperatures, although some people put the high correlation between the two in the context of Earth’s longer-term climate variability, and raise all kinds of doubts about causal links.
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Top 10 Excuses For Not Doing Yoga

10 Excuses for not doing yoga

Have you thought of doing yoga but cannot get yourself on the yoga mat? Then this article is for you! Or if you know somebody in this position please read this and forward it:

1. I don’t have time

Yoga may be the number one return for investment of your time. If you do yoga for just 1 hour per day, every week, then you are investing 365 hours in a year. What do you get in return? Better quality of life, improved health, and a clearer mind. And on top all this, your life will be extended by many years. Considering that 1-year has 8760 hours that is not a bad return on investment! Why would you not take a deal like that?

2. I don’t have time now!

“Well it’s all fine and good, and I understand the part about life elongation. But I don’t have time now!” Some say. There are many in this position with little or no room to do anything extra as every minute of their time is used up. For people in such situations we recommend starting small. You can start with a small 20-minute sequence and practice it daily at home. The surprising thing is that yoga will create time for you. How? With a clearer mind, you will work more efficiently, make fewer mistakes, and have better charge of your emotions.

3. I am not flexible

This is like saying “I don’t want to learn French because I don’t know how to speak French!” Flexibility will be the end result of your practice, and you will get there slowly. If you are already flexible that is fine, but flexibility is not a pre-requisite for doing yoga. There are variations for most poses and you can use props for some poses. So if you are not flexible then you want to take advantage of yoga to stretch unused muscles, flex those tendons and ligaments, and breathe new life into your joints!
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How Yoga Helped Me Heal

Chris Fleming was into kick boxing and running and he never gave much thought to yoga. Then he sustained neck injuries in a car accident and made his way to yoga. In this video he explains how yoga not only helped him heal, but that he discovered hidden mental benefits that he had not anticipated.

You may also like: Yoga Is About Having Control Over My Emotions

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Men And Gorillas

Gorilla In The Zoo

A married couple visiting a Zoo walks past a gorilla enclosure.

Says the woman: ‘Mark, Do you know that gorillas are animals which resemble men in their behavior? I want to see if I can arouse the gorilla.’

Seeing that nobody was around she leaned forward and allowed the gorilla a view of her cleavage.

Sure enough the gorilla gets excited and grabs the bars of the enclosure as if it wanted to break free.

‘See,’ says the woman, ‘Now, I know why you react the way you do; men can’t control their animal instincts just like gorillas can’t.’

Says Mark: ‘This is incredible, now, pull your skirt up slightly, and let us see what happens!’

The woman pulls her skirt up seductively. The gorilla, which by now ,was extremely aroused, breaks free from the enclosure, grabs the woman and starts yanking the clothes off her.

The woman yells: ‘Mark , what do I do now? Please, help me!’

Mark replies: ‘Now, tell him you have a headache and you’re not in mood … Let us see if Gorillas and Men are the same!’

You may also like: Half Sisters

Credit: Source unknown. Came to us via e-mail.

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