To see is to understand.

Something each and every one of us has to absorb – but without going in to space!

No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.

So said Albert Einstein.  As with so many wise men from all times, what gets uttered strikes as such obvious common-sense.  But it took a wise person to utter it!

We need a change of consciousness.  About the world we live on.  This single, fragile, vulnerable rock in space that was featured in last Sunday’s post, Just a small white dot, and in yesterday’s post about Carl Sagan.

Climate Crocks, a ‘must follow’ blogsite for those that are concerned about the state of our planet, recently published a post that revealed how astronauts upon viewing the Planet Earth from Space had a profound Consciousness Change.  Take this example;

“I  think you start out with this idea of what it’s going to be like…and then when you do finally look at the Earth for the first time…you’re overwhelmed by how much more beautiful it really is, when you see it for real.

It’s just like it’s this dynamic, alive place, ..that you see glowing all the time..”

-Nicole Stott, Shuttle, ISS Astronaut

Or this from Ron Garan;

“When we look down on the Earth from space, we see this amazing, indescribably beautiful planet, looks like a living, breathing organism..”

– Ron Garan, Suttle, ISS Astronaut

Wonderfully, that Climate Crocks piece quickly led to a new organisation called Planetary Collective.

Planetary Collective is a group of filmmakers, visual media creatives and thinkers who work with cosmologists, ecologists, and philosophers to explore some of the big questions facing our planet at this time.

Embracing a multidisciplinary, multi-media approach, we brings scientists, philosophers, and researchers together with designers, coders, and creatives to bring new perspectives to audiences around the world in fresh and innovative ways.

It was this group that last December released the short, but incredibly powerful film, Overview.  Here it is:

Released 7th December 2012

At the end of 2011, we filmed a short documentary called OVERVIEW about astronauts’ experiences in space, due for release in the last quarter of 2012. The film is both a stand-alone short film and a prelude to CONTINUUM, introducing many of the key ideas expanded upon in the feature documentary.


Astronauts who have seen the Earth from space have often described the ‘overview effect’ as an experience that has transformed their perspective of the planet and mankind’s place upon it, and enabled them to perceive it as our shared home, without boundaries between nations or species.

OVERVIEW is a short film that will explore this perspective through interviews with astronauts who have experienced the overview effect. The film also features insights from commentators and thinkers on the wider implications and importance of this understanding for humanity as a whole, and especially its relevance to how we meet the tremendous challenges facing our planet at this time.

That film release date of the 7th December, 2012 was the 40th anniversary of the most famous photograph of Planet Earth taken on the 7th December, 1972: The Blue Marble.

The Earth seen from Apollo 17.
The Earth seen from Apollo 17.

Original caption: “View of the Earth as seen by the Apollo 17 crew traveling toward the moon. This translunar coast photograph extends from the Mediterranean Sea area to the Antarctica south polar ice cap.

This is the first time the Apollo trajectory made it possible to photograph the south polar ice cap. Note the heavy cloud cover in the Southern Hemisphere. Almost the entire coastline of Africa is clearly visible. The Arabian Peninsula can be seen at the northeastern edge of Africa. The large island off the coast of Africa is Madagascar. The Asian mainland is on the horizon toward the northeast.”

From WikiPedia,

The Blue Marble is a famous photograph of the Earth, taken on December 7, 1972, by the crew of the Apollo 17 spacecraft, at a distance of about 45,000 kilometres (28,000 mi).

The snapshot — taken by astronauts on December 7, 1972, at 5:39 a.m. EST (10:39 UTC) — is one of the most widely distributed photographic images in existence.

The image is one of the few to show a fully illuminated Earth, as the astronauts had the Sun behind them when they took the image. To the astronauts, Earth had the appearance and size of a glass marble, hence the name.

Back to that Overview film.  Slightly confusing is the fact that the Planetary Collective website, where that Overview film is highlighted, is a different one to the associated Overview Institute website, from where one can read this Declaration:

A Critical Time

We live at a critical moment in human history. The challenges of climate change, food, water and energy shortages as well as the increasing disparity between the developed and developing nations are testing our will to unite, while differences in religions, cultures, and politics continue to keep us apart.

The creation of a “global village” through satellite TV and the Internet is still struggling to connect the world into one community. At this critical moment, our greatest need is for a global vision of planetary unity and purpose for humanity as a whole.

And to my mind the greatest need, the ONLY need, for that global vision is to move rapidly beyond our industrial and materialistic way of life to one where we live in harmony with our planet.

To pick up on what Ron Garan was quoted as saying, Planet Earth is a living, breathing organism.  If the species man and thousands of other non-human species are to stand a chance of remaining on this living, breathing organism then You, Me and every other person out there, has to have a change of consciousness about the one and only place we live on.

So don’t flick over from those last words to the next thing in your life.  Go back and look at the picture of our home, taken from Apollo 17.  Make sure that you ask as many as you can to watch the Overview film above.

Finally, you be a person who makes a change in your consciousness.  The rest is easy.

Back to dear old Albert E.

No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.

5 thoughts on “To see is to understand.

  1. Life in harmony with Earth means either megadeath, first, or much more advanced technology, ASAP. What do austerofascists propose? Cutting science. Contemplate the 5%+ cuts looming in the USA, and 13% + in the EU, effective since last week.


  2. I remember watching documentary footage of Apollo 8 and those first glimpses of “Earth Rise” from the Moon. I was about eight years old at the time and I had my first moment -like the ones you are describing here- right then.


      1. Well, I was watching “old” footage of the Apollo 8 mission. I actually wasn’t alive in 1968. . . shows how young I am. (Born 1979) 🙂


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