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I'm a small-town poet in both written word and performance. I'm more influenced by rock and roll but I am also a lit-chick full of curiosity. My influences are far and wide and I can find writing inspiration in anything, from important matters to pure whimsy.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Home, and Beyond

Home is in that circle, Earth. This is a famous picture, taken nineteen years ago by the Voyager I space probe. It really shows our place in the universe, we're such a small part. Not that we're insignificant by any means, we are important. We're incredible, at this point Earth is the only planet known to harbor intelligent life. Life might exist elsewhere in the universe, and possibly in our own solar system, but right now Earth is the only known place to house complex life forms. When we look at the world around us it is so incredible.

I've been watching Cosmos on Hulu. Thank goodness, the DVDs are kinda expensive. Then again, when you can order a 16 disk set of the complete Monty Python's Flying Circus for less than $70, this can look a little pricey. Forget about the soundtrack, that's out of print so it's even more expensive compared to other disks. Doesn't help that it's discontinued.

As a child I was fascinated by the book, I would constantly look through it. I also thought that Carl Sagan kinda resembled my father on the back of the jacket, even though the only thing they really have in common is that both were born in Brooklyn. In a way Sagan was one of my childhood heroes, even if at the time I didn't understand everything he expressed. Now watching it as an adult, there's so much more I can understand in terms of he connections between everything. You don't have to be an astronomer to appreciate the magificence of the series. You can be interested in other sciences, history, philosophy and human culture to appreciate the beauty of Cosmos. Even after twenty nine years from its release, it's still breathtaking to watch. Hell, this series discussed environmental issues before "going green" became a fasion statement. Not only that, it looks at the big picture, beyond "don't litter", it looks at what could happen if we stop caring about the planet, and each other. Taking care of the Earth goes beyond the superficial into the spiritual when we look at ourselves as human beings.

I really, really appreciate this series now that I'm an adult. As a child I understood parts of it, I could understand sending the Viking landers to Mars. I could understand that different cultures interpreted the same constellations differently. I wasn't able to understand more of the advanced concepts though, such as nuclear winter or how folkloe can lead to sleective breeding of a species. Even reading the book I wasn't able to grasp everything in my elementary school mind. Yet my parents encouraged this behavior, they liked having an inquisitive child who wanted to learn. I feel very blessed. My upbringing wasn't perfect, but there is a lot of things I feel my parents have done right.

I will say my re-discovery of Cosmos is a spiritual journey for me. The series dubs itself "a personal journey", and as human beings it explores many facets of our kind. I feel it spiritual in our connection with the universe, and the impact we make as a species. We're naturally attuned to learn and discover, and this has worked to our advantage so many times. At the same time, we need to be aware of our destructive sides as well and channel such energies into working to learn further about what's around us. This world is a wide and wonderful place, and the whole universe can be ahead of us if we take the time to care.

Maybe I should borrow my Dad's copy of the Cosmos book again, or go bug my friend Jason. He has two copies and promised me one of them a few years ago. Maybe I can borrow some of his other Sagan books as well, or buy them when I have more money saved.

I also still need to write a poem for the day. I'm still slacking. I was inspired tonight, and I finally drafted what I've handwritten to my computer. I'm hoping that within the week I'll also be able to get more stuff set up. This weekend has been a bit lazy, but then again I've been busy. Between a paying job and an internship/volunteer work much fo my spare time has been devoted to my own pleasures. ^_^

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