Well, I guess we made it. Another 4 months rotating around the sun. Another semester of college in the books. I often see this point in the year as a great time to reflect on what we’ve learned and if there is anything to take away from this semester it’s that we are truly a pale blue dot floating in what we deem the universe. I’ll let Carl Sagan explain:
We really are a pale blue dot. Drifting in our galaxy alone. It’s pretty amazing to think that so much has occurred on our tiny speck in space. It’s humbling. Everything we have ever known, everything our parents, grandparents and ancestors have ever experienced has occurred on an Earth that is 8000 miles across. It’s amazing to me that this measly planet has the only source of life that we have discovered. Is there potential for life to be out there? Absolutely. When it comes down to it, the chances of us discovering life from another planet, another solar system, another galaxy, at least in our lifetime, are slim to none. Does that stop of us from looking? Of course not. We haven’t found anything so far, yet we try harder. We sent the Kepler satellite into orbit with the sole purpose of finding planets and potentially habitable ones, around other stars. I am confident that once we find evidence there is potential for life, we will not be far off actually discovering life.
Taking an astronomy course has given me a completely new perspective on life. Not just how inconsequential everything on this pale blue dot is to the greater Milky Way, but how we need to do everything we can to preserve our great planet because we alone can make it prosper or destroy it. We are a speck in space and time and in this moment, we should be focusing on doing everything we can to take care of our planet, each other and in the words of Carl Sagan “cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.”
Thanks for a great semester.