Carl Sagan: Pale blue dot


I thought you may all like this. It’s a great comic of our place in the universe inspired by a Carl Sagan and a picture of the earth, our home, taken by Voyager as it was cruising many miles away from home.

You will find

zenpencils.com

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About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

81 thoughts on “Carl Sagan: Pale blue dot

  1. Mike says:

    Mate you got me this time… I am speechless when it comes to The Pale Blue Dot, especially when narrated by Carl himself with his eternal unique voice…

    Thank you for sharing

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  2. That’s beautiful, Mak! Thank you. 🙂

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  3. Arkenaten says:

    Spot on, Mak. Nice post.

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  4. That is very moving. Thank you for this. Does Alex Autin follow you? In case she doesn’t I shall point her you way! 🙂

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  5. aguywithoutboxers says:

    Different and a great way to start my day! Thank you, my brother and friend! 🙂

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  6. john zande says:

    A remarkable piece that should be played at the beginning of each year in every school, college and university across the planet.

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  7. Mike says:

    My friend, I also include this video that literally read the words by Carl Sagan himself http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p9TIeuBF9Ss
    Happy watching

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  8. Alex Autin says:

    I’m a huge fan of Sagan, and of Zen Pencils – this is one of his best!

    Like

  9. Eric Alagan says:

    Kid 1: And now see what you started!
    Kid 2: All I did was flick the sheet.
    Kid 1: Yeah, and kicked up all those motes of dust.
    Kid 2: Oh, I see what you mean.
    Kid 1: Well, we might as well have some fun.
    Kid 2: Water?
    Kid 1: Hey, good idea!
    Kid 2: How about light next?
    Kid 1: You’re enjoying this, aren’t you —–

    Like

  10. emmylgant says:

    That was great Noel. I am sharing this on fb.

    Like

  11. AnElephantCant thank you enough for this
    From the genius of the unique Carl Sagan
    The pale blue dot
    Inspires a new thought
    And causes a dream in the soul to awaken

    Like

  12. Carl. Sagan is one of my heroes. I speak in present tense because throughout my Christian life, I was taught that Dr. Sagan did the ‘devils’ work. Some even mocked him in church. After deconversion, I watched his 13 part series, and was awed. My favorite was his last program, “Who Speaks for Earth?” Excerpt:

    “This is the danger of our species: the fact that we are very likely to destroy ourselves, to choose madness over thought, death over life. In this narrative, we had the options of “compassion, foresight, and reason. But instead, we listened to that reptilian voice within us, counseling fear, territoriality, aggression. We accepted the products of science; we rejected its methods.”

    I wept. What an incredible mind. What an incredible humanitarian. He is sorely missed.

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    • makagutu says:

      That was quite a beautiful talk. Thanks for sharing

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      • My pleasure, Mak, and thanks for sharing the Blue Dot in a comic strip format. That was quite cool and attention grabbing. I’ve listened and read the Blue Dot before. Love the powerful message. I’ve shared this CS formate with others now who’ve expressed the same sentiments.

        Hope you’ve had a great weekend thus far. Looks like there’s a 7 hour time difference between us. It’s late morning in my neck of the woods.
        Victoria

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        • makagutu says:

          Today morning we had a marathon and I participated in the 21km where I ran for about 9km and walked the rest of the distance. Tired wouldn’t describe adequately what I felt when I finished.
          It’s early evening here, I have slept all afternoon. Have a pleasant day and make sure you go to church 😛

          Like

  13. Btw, just to give you some idea of how difficult it is to be a non-believer in the South of the USA, much less America — read the link below if you haven’t already seen it. I’m a transplant to this area. But as you probably already know, non-believers are the most feared, untrusted, and dare I say, hated group of people in America. Studies/surveys show that rapists are considered more trustworthy than non-believers. I live in the heart of the heat — and I’m not talking about fahrenheit and celsius.

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/10/24/south-carolina-soup-kitchen-refuses-to-allow-atheists-to-volunteer/

    What’s it like for you there?

    Like

    • makagutu says:

      I saw that link in some site but didn’t read it. I just thought it is crazy, I mean how does atheists volunteering in the community do the same community a disservice! I think there is a problem with the religious in America.

      We are a small demographic here but so far as I can tell, there is no threat. This must be because we are just only beginning to be heard. Where I work, religion is not discussed and my colleagues know am an atheist but we get along very well.

      America needs to improve

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      • I fear that America will crash and burn before it comes around, if it comes around. Christianity is like a virus here, and moderate Christians appear to be complacent and are doing very little to combat these fundies who’ve taken over the House in Washington and at state and local levels. There is apparently going to be a class action lawsuit now against homosexuality. This is effed up.

        http://www.alternet.org/speakeasy/week-blackness/class-action-lawsuit-against-homosexuality

        Like

        • makagutu says:

          WTF!!
          Are they serious! That is going too far, so to speak! It is unbelievable. They should instead move to Nigeria and Uganda where legislators are nincompoops to think of making homosexuality illegal and punishable

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          • Despicable, isn’t it? I found out on Dawkin’s site first, but wanted you to hear what those idiots were saying. Dawkin’s posted this link below on his site..It has more details.

            http://www.alternet.org/speakeasy/week-blackness/class-action-lawsuit-against-homosexuality

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            I need a bigger vocabulary. I just can’t believe it. If it was a comic like the fool of a lwayer from here who wanted to the International Court of Justice to quash the sentence handed over to the mythical Jesus would be laughable. This one! there is nothing to say except that the blockheads are bigots and a threat to peace

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          • They are indeed a threat to peace ‘and’ world stability — yet they are allowed to get away with it and indoctrinate (program) their children to hate anyone who is different from them. This is why I am an activist for human rights. In our country, since the Patriot Act, the word ‘activist’ has become a dirty word that raises flags. It’s why I use ‘advocate for peace’ on my blog/gravatar. Activists blogger’s are getting shut down. I do try to remain ‘just under the radar’ in certain circumstances. My hope is to educate about the dangers of a lack of emotional intelligences in society. This lack will be to our demise if we don’t freaking wake the fuck up.

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          • makagutu says:

            That is the part that is most scary- that they can get away with it.
            A place where words become dangerous to use is a dangerous place to live in. My hope is that we become reasonable, that we sit down and reason together. I hope for a time when people will learn that if at all there are gods, I don’t think there is any, we are not their concern and there is nothing we could do to help gods but we can do a lot hell of things to help each other!

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          • I wholeheartedly agree, Mak. We know from studies that conservatives, on average, tend to have more grey matter volume in the right amygdala, the area of fear. So basically, children are being wired to fear the other, and we cannot survive as a species if this continues. We also know that power changes the brain, now it appears to be around 10 years or more (dubbed the 10 Year Illness).

            From Dr. Ian Robertson’s book “How Power Affects the Brain”

            ” Power changes the brain triggering increased testosterone in both men and women. Testosterone and one of its by-products called 3-androstanediol, are addictive, largely because they increase dopamine in a part of the brain’s reward system called the nucleus accumbens.

            Too much power – and hence too much dopamine – can disrupt normal cognition and emotion, leading to gross errors of judgment and imperviousness to risk, not to mention huge egocentricity and lack of empathy for others.”

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          • makagutu says:

            Now that is something yours truly didn’t know. You see I said you will teach the neurology of human behaviour, the next part for me is to watch how this plays out based on observations and experience among those I have lived with.

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  14. Also, if you click on Upstate Atheist link from the article, their site is down. It says:

    “Sorry about the site problems, everyone. We’re experiencing a heavy server load due to all the media attention, and some malicious people have been trying to prevent our site from existing. We are currently working on the issue.

    Do you see why I have to keep a low profile? The very fact that I put my picture on my blog was a huge step. Some say I was courageous and daring. I was probably stupid. lol.

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  15. Sorry if I’ve been a Debbie Downer. We can change the subject if you like. =)

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    • makagutu says:

      Not at all, do I sound like am complaining?

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      • LOL — no. I just wanted to be sure. I can get intense with this subject — because I am passionate about peace on our planet. I want a better world for my daughter and her children. We simply can’t go on like this, and I can’t sit on my butt and pretend that some deity is going to come and make it all better. We have a responsibility, as citizens of this planet, to do what we can to to find ways to live among ourselves peacefully. We have models/templates to work with, like in the Scandinavian countries. Though they are not perfect, most of them are considered to be the most peaceful countries in the world.

        Like

        • makagutu says:

          You are in the best company. My concern for world peace is just on par with yours and I believe we can only get there by first accepting our common humanity. To do that we must work at breaking tribal, regional, religious or ideological barriers that set us against one another.

          I want a better well for those who will come after me.

          I want the world to be a better place because I lived.

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          • YES! That’s what I’m talking about.

            I do feel so alone, sometimes, in my corner of the world. I’m so grateful for the Internet. I really don’t think many people have grasped the enormity, nor the seriousness of the state we are in. Yes, we appear to be living in the least violent time in history, according to Steve Pinker’s research, but at no other time in history do we have the means to annihilate ourselves many, many times over.

            You are probably familiar with this quote, but I’ll share it, just in case we have lurkers who’ve not read it before. This is why I worry, because history seems to be repeating itself, and I truly wonder what the hell it’s going to take for people to shed their apathy.

            “That men do not learn very much from the lessons of history is the most important of all the lessons that history has to teach.” ~Aldous Huxley

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            Nope, I had not come across this before!

            Unfortunately as you say, most people have not appreciated the magnitude of the sad state in which we are in and maybe most people do not study history and as such are not aware of the similarities of what happened then and what we see happening now.

            As I said thanks to the internet, it has presented a platform where we can meet people of like persuasion at the comfort of our living rooms and even manage to make friends. How beautiful is human ingenuity?

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          • Speaking of the Internet, I have something to share with you. brb

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          • http://www.alternet.org/theres-international-plan-censor-internet-works-lets-stop-it-its-tracks?paging=off

            Excerpt: “This means that elected U.S. Congress members would be forced to vote on the agreement without the possibility of sharing, discussing, or amending its contents. Under such intense pressure from the President, it seems as though the most comprehensive and covert post-WTO trade agreement could be finalized by as early as the end of October

            Just like what happened when the Patriot Act was signed. They didn’t have time to review and most didn’t know what the hell they were signing.

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            Thats just very scary! I recently read of a meeting of ISPs or some internet teams that bypassed the US of A. It was held in Brazil early this month and reflects a shift from the US. I don’t know if it will count in this madness but I sure hope it does. To censor the internet is to take us back several centuries back!

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          • Yes, I agree that it will take us several centuries back. Dr. Michael Persinger, during a lecture I watched on youtube titled “No More Secrets” states that throughout history, when more than 50% of the population became educated, they would rebel against authority that was undermining their rights. I see this happening in our country — a lack of priority on education — and especially a lack of funding. “Keep ’em dumb and they won’t revolt.”

            The Internet provides education to us here in America who can’t afford to go to college, and believe me, it’s almost impossible to get a college education any more, unless you want to go in debt for the rest of your life. They’ve even tried to raise the interest rates on student loans.

            I am reminded of the movie Idiocracy. Did you ever see it? If not, it’s a satirical, futuristic movie about what happened in America when they were dumbed down. It seems rather prophetic at this point, considering that the religious multiply like rabbits here, and the conservatives are doing their damndest to prevent women from having control over their reproductive health. Here’s a quote from the movie:

            “Narrator: As the 21st century began, human evolution was at a turning point. Natural selection, the process by which the strongest, the smartest, the fastest, reproduced in greater numbers than the rest, a process which had once favored the noblest traits of man, now began to favor different traits.

            Most science fiction of the day predicted a future that was more civilized and more intelligent. But as time went on, things seemed to be heading in the opposite direction. A dumbing down. How did this happen? Evolution does not necessarily reward intelligence. With no natural predators to thin the herd, it began to simply reward those who reproduced the most, and left the intelligent to become an endangered species.”

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          • makagutu says:

            No and the quote makes a lot of sense. There are friends who have suggested on the net that atheists, humanists and other nones should up their birth rate or the gains they are making in numbers will come to naught pitted against the birth rate of the religious and I almost want to agree except I don’t feel enamored to bring children to the planet.

            Like

          • A lot of people feel like you do, and i don’t blame them. After having one child, I didn’t not want to have more. I was widowed, and even though I worked, I did not want to spread myself thin and not be able to give her a quality life. But many of the religious don’t see their children as human beings, but rather, property. So having a quality life is not priority. I know that sounds judgemental, but I’ve been involved in Christianity for the better part of my life, and I KNOW from personal experience how children are perceived, especially in evangelical circles such as the Southern Baptist Convention which happens to be the 2nd largest denomination in America, with the Catholics being the 1st, and we know that the Catholic church does NOT want women or men to use birth control.

            I am a big-picture thinker, and when I get to connecting all the dots, it’s daunting — very daunting. I am generally a positive person, but I am also a realist who’s not going to stick my head in the sand because I want to ‘feel good’. Yes, I agree that we should be trying to outnumber these people who are hell bent on bringing on Armegaddon. Now get this … 58% of evangelicals believe that Jesus is coming back by 2050. 41% of Americans believe that Jesus is coming back by 2050. This is according to the Pew Research.
            http://www.pewresearch.org/daily-number/jesus-christs-return-to-earth/

            So their mentality is that they need to produce ‘soldiers for Christ”, I kid you not.

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            There is no way we are outdoing those numbers. The next alternative that we can hope for is that the children learn to think for themselves and maybe, just maybe, a change occurs in their thinking and they do not adopt the lessons from their parents and or care givers

            Like

          • Yes, that is our only hope, which is why it is urgent that we don’t have censorship on the Internet. If you read some of the comments from that article I shared, one guy mentioned, that he was doing research for a paper he was doing for a college assignment. He’s from America, and he was notified that he had used up his quota of search terms on any given subject. I think he used a search term/phrase about 3 or 4 times, then was censored.

            And speaking of teaching critical thinking skills to children — here’s what the Republicans in Texas were up to in 2012:

            “Republican Party of Texas wrote into its 2012 platform as part of the section on education:

            Knowledge-Based Education – We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.”
            Republican Party of Texas wrote into its 2012 platform as part of the section on education:

            http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/post/texas-gop-rejects-critical-thinking-skills-really/2012/07/08/gJQAHNpFXW_blog.html

            Now, had it not been for the outpouring from the Internet, this platform would have been widespread in the largest state in our country.

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            That is so effed up! What was in their minds, that is if they still have any left. That situation can only be described as unfortunate and those kids as very unlucky

            Like

          • What’s in their minds? Way too much dopamine. Power, domination. I think it’s worth repeating:

            “But too much power – and hence too much dopamine – can disrupt normal cognition and emotion, leading to gross errors of judgment and imperviousness to risk, not to mention huge egocentricity and lack of empathy for others. ”

            OK, I know it’s getting late for you, but I want to share one more thing — because these religious fanatics have got a double whammy of dopamine in their grey matter..

            Quote from a study: “Neuropharmacological studies generally point to dopaminergic activation as the leading neurochemical feature associated with religious activity.”

            Hyperreligiosity is a major feature of mania, obsessive-compulsive disorder, schizophrenia, temporal-lobe epilepsy and related disorders, in which the ventromedial dopaminergic systems are highly activated.”
            http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16439158

            Hyperreligoius? — our country is full of hypereligious.

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            It must be sad being in Texas and to be the only thinking person in the state. It’s just 2200hrs here and am not in a hurry to sleep.

            Like

          • OK — yay. I am being a motor mind here – my mind is all over the place. Hahah I love it, though, and I thank you for being so engaging. I don’t get that often. I have posted this stuff on my 1st blog, but unfortunately, people don’t seem to be that interested. I get very little feedback. I think we have to address the root causes to make effective changes or we will not get anywhere. We will keep repeating the cycle.

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            You are most welcome. You see we share a common concern, how to make the world a better place for us and for those who shall succeed us and it is something that has many facets; education, neurology and just how to get people to apply themselves to common sense.

            These are things we can talk about until the proverbial chicken comes home to roost

            Like

          • “These are things we can talk about until the proverbial chicken comes home to roost “

            Exactly. Mak, we have the resources, the tool, and the knowledge to implement change, positive change, but there are power structures in our country that are protected by the Constitution. Corporations are considered people. All religious organizations don’t have to pay taxes, and they do appear to be undermining our evolution — and any possibility for peace. They are getting filthy rich and now they are infiltrating European countries. They are getting into the educational systems of Europe, and it’s scary how they are doing it. Here’s what i was mentioning a few minutes ago. Excerpts:

            “And as evangelical Christianity and other conservative religious movements gain force in Europe, the American right is finding more allies on the Continent. Cumulatively, their victories may be changing the global climate on some of the biggest social issues of our time.”

            “We have a conservative period now in history — a substantial movement to the right around the world,” says James Paul, executive director of the Global Policy Forum in New York and a prominent thinker on the globalization of the Christian right. Paul argues that democratic/socialist governments around the world, particularly in Europe, are failing to deliver on their promises of growth and social welfare. “The Christian conservatives know this, they’re in the ascendancy, and they want to consolidate their power while they have a chance in Europe and the U.N.”

            “Samuel Ericsson, founder of Advocates International, a Virginia-based organization that trains Christian lawyers worldwide and has some 30,000 lawyers in its network..”

            “They were joined by other American Christian groups, like the Alliance Defense Fund, an Arizona-based Christian legal organization with teams of lawyers and more than $25 million in revenue.”

            “American evangelicals are incubating a Christian right in secular Europe.”
            http://prospect.org/article/tomorrow-world

            US evangelicals aim to influence European law
            http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0417/p01s03-woeu.html/%28page%29/2

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            WTF! This points to a grim future for Europe and the world at large.
            I don’t know how the idea that churches should be tax exempt but what I know it was one of the grossest mistakes of our constitution drafters or rather of the legislature. It is time these people started to pay tax on property and earnings

            Like

          • YES, I agree. They should be paying taxes. They are not only dangerous to world stability and human rights, but they have also managed to take advantage of the system here in America, and are using their tax exempt status to wreak havoc on Europe, once again. Do you see how we have apparently not learned from history? Are we effing blind, or just stupid, or both?

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            Am reading the links about the Swedish preacher and it is really sad.
            I think they were right those who said history repeats itself and as Auxley put it, we don’t learn from it. We are bound to repeat the same mistakes

            Like

          • Mak, I really appreciate that you are taking the time to read these links. I know I have bombarded you today, lol. You are very patient. 😀

            I have files and files of stuff I’ve collected that tells me things going to get worse before they get better. It feels hopeless, but I’m not giving up on this, even if it appears to fall upon deaf ears. I plan to do a post to connect the dots with all the data I have. I can’t seem to keep up with it, though I try my best.

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            I will look forward to that post.
            I should add patience as my fourth name 🙂

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            Just finished reading the link on GOP education platform and what crackheads are those men and women who came up with such a document!

            They can only be described as a disgrace to the species! Very stupid people

            Like

          • Yep — wait til you see what the fundies are doing in Europe. If you are not stunned, I will be, lol. brb

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            I read about Scotland and there was a youtube video of some Muslims who want sheria law in Brussels, the world is going crazy and then the incident at one of the UK universities where atheists couldn’t wear their T-shirts!

            Like

          • Yep, it’s the Abrahamic faiths who’ve never been able to be peaceful, in how many hundreds of years? Thousands of years? Seems they are the ones who are causing havoc on our species.

            Btw, my last post was flagged for moderation. I guess it’s because I shared 2 links.

            Like

          • makagutu says:

            It has been approved, don’t you worry any bit.

            The Judeo-Christian religions, whose main concern is getting to heaven are not really about peaceful coexistence here.

            Like

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