Sunday, March 8, 2009

Pssst! Come Here. It's Important.

The Pale Blue Dot
You really aren't that important. You really aren't that relevant. You really don't matter. The time you spend on earth is minuscule. The amount of time others on earth who know you or remember you or give you any thought is also just minuscule.

You won't touch many people at all. Tragic natural events are far more important than you are; wildfires, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and hurricanes, even "minor" ones, have more lasting impact on more people than you'll likely encounter in a lifetime.

And by "you," I mean "me," as well, of course. I am all those things, too. My parents were. My grandparents were. My children are. Any future grandchildren will be. All the hard work and kindnesses extended and people we touched and will touched and good deeds done and misdeeds done? A blip, if anything. The vacuums our passing or non-existence create are filled practically immediately by someone else.

And I'm talking as if earth itself were important. But earth is just that pale blue dot. Carl Sagan said: Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there-on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

Why bother, then?

Because you are. I am. Even if everyone I touch is less than a blip on a planet which is just a mote of dust, I am here. And they are here. People who need me. People whom I need. Making a difference to just one person matters to me.

Even if. Even if.

Sunday Scribblings' prompt this week includes this: What pressing matter do you have weighing on your mind? What would you like to say to someone? What would you like to say to the world? Or to yourself? What do you think is important enough to make people listen? What would make you say, "Listen up because this is important?"

[Of course, for me and many others, there is also our belief in God. But that seemed like cheating to bring Him into the argument!]

[Photo taken by Voyager I.]


Tumblewords: said...

Indeed. Excellent post.

Rinkly Rimes said...

Absolutely! I have lived nearly eighty years knowing I'm less than dust! And having a great time!

susan said...

Say it again! Because, even the blip counts. Thanks.

D... said...

I think a lot of people need to read this. Excellent post, as usual! :)

rebecca said...

That's right...even the most miniscule matters...

Beth said...

The world within . . . that's what connects us to others. Your post makes a fine point (and Carl Sagan's blue dot resonates!).

Stanley Parks said...


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