When Carl Sagan passed, he left behind an observational lens of humanity that still today has the power to change our global identity. This power, so uniquely revolutionary, will be necessary if humanity expects to survive on Earth. These words are the foundations of the cosmic perspective- an outlook that will, as Sagan says, see our planet as one organism without borders or ideological separations. If the positive aspects of human nature are to prevail, this is our future.
Although it seems unfair to allocate all attention only to this period in humanity’s history, this time may be most crucial to the life-bearing ability of planet Earth. This coming century will decide whether or not we will be forced to leave home, or if we actually have the adaptive capabilities to restore this planet and build a sustainable future for our children.
And we’re all aware of the dark side of humanity- war, corruption, ritual- but that’s why Sagan stresses the bright side as our force of endurance in the cosmos. We are principally different from the other species with which we share our planet, and this difference mainly manifests itself in our intelligence. Our brains have conquered the oceans, moon, and even probed other parts of the solar system. These biological computers will prove themselves as our greatest tools in harnessing the exponential growth of technology and reverting the downward trend Earth is experiencing.
Let us hope we can maintain the positive aspects of our species as we travel further into the future. Using our intelligence, we can overcome pollution, overcrowding, education, poverty, and using our compassion for one another can we continue to transcend the social hurdles we’ve been breaking down in the past two centuries. We have the skills to keep composure in the tidal wave of transformation rolling toward civilization, if only we make the conscious effort to identify and utilize them.
After all, this is our only chance on this planet.
- Carl Sagan Describes this Critical Branch-Point in Earth’s History (itsabeautifulearth.com)
- Pale Blue Dot – Carl Sagan (wonderfanatic.wordpress.com)
- Carl Sagan Illustrating How Big a Googol Is (itsabeautifulearth.com)
- Carl Sagan and the Human Presence on Earth (clementsgeoff.com)