The cosmic perspective – Neil deGrasse Tyson

toronto light footprint 1Do you sometimes start your day whining  at the universe for giving you crap?
Well, maybe on those days, you woke with an…

“unjustifiably large ego”.





Right: Toronto at night from the International Space Station – can you see “you” now?

Here’s Neil deGrasse Tyson at bigthink, offering his perspective  on how a cosmic perspective can help us keep our ego in, er,   perspective…

sit back and bask in your relevance to the cosmos.
… enough perspective for ya?

deGrasseTyson“I know I’m small but I’m also big..

…I’m big because I’m connected to the universe

…and the universe is connected to me”

Neil deGrasse Tyson:

There’s something about the cosmic perspective which for some people is enlightening and for other people it’s terrifying. For those who are terrified by it, they’re here on earth and they have a certain self-identity, and then they learn that earth is tiny and we’re in this void of interplanetary space and then there’s a star that we call the sun and that’s kind of average and there’s a hundred billion other stars in a galaxy. And our galaxy, the Milky Way, is one of 50 or 100 billion other galaxies in the universe. And with every step, every window that modern astrophysics has opened to our mind, the person who wants to feel like they’re the center of everything ends up shrinking. And for some people they might even find it depressing. I assert that if you were depressed after learning and being exposed to the perspective, you started your day with an unjustifiably large ego.

You thought more highly of yourself than in fact the circumstances deserved.

So here’s what you do: You say, I have no ego at all. Let’s start that way. I have no ego, no cause to puff myself up. Now let’s learn about the cosmic perspective. Yeah, we’re on a planet that’s orbiting a star, and a star is an energy source and it’s giving us energy, and we’re feeling this energy, and life is enabled by this energy in this star. And by the way, there’s a hundred billion other stars that have other planets. There might be other life out there, could be like us. It’s probably not like us, but whatever it is, it’d be fascinating to find out who it is.

Can we talk to them? Can we not? Are they more advanced? Are they less advanced? By the way, the atoms of our body are traceable to what stars do.

And all you can do is sit back and bask in your relevance to the cosmos.

So those who see the cosmic perspective as a depressing outlook, they really need to reassess how they think about the world. Because when I look up in the universe I know I’m small but I’m also big. I’m big because I’m connected to the universe and the universe is connected to me.

About recoverynetwork:Toronto

We believe people can and do recover from "mental illness" - because we are living it. We believe in the power of supporting each other: learning from and with each other. You are welcome to join us..
This entry was posted in Ideas, Philosopy or Pill-osophy ?, The Mad Ones and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.