Routine Interplanetary Violence

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by Sam_Spade, Aug 1, 2011.

  1. The following in a excerpt from Pale Blue Dot written by Carl Sagan in 1994 and published by Random House. It is from the Chapter 17 'Routine Planetary Violence' on pages 242-243.

    Sagan is discussing the impact of the Shoemaker-Levy 9 comets into the atmosphere of Jupiter in July 1994.

    "The appointed moment for the impact of the first piece, Fragment A, came and went. There were no reports from ground-based telescopes. Planetary scientists stared with increasing gloom at a television monitor displaying the data transmitted to he Space Telescope Institute in Baltimore from the Hubble Space Telescope. There was nothing anomalous. Shuttle astronauts too time off from the reproduction of fruit flies, fish and newts to look at Jupiter through binoculars. They reported seeing nothing. The impact of the millennium was beginning to look very much like a fizzle.

    Then there was a report from a ground-based optical telescope in La Palma in the Canary Islands, followed by announcements from a radiotelescope in Japan; from the European Southern Observatory in Chile; and from a University of Chicago instrument in the frigid wastelands of the South Pole. In Baltimore the young scientists crowding around the TV monitor -- themselves monitored by the cameras of CNN -- began to see something, and in exactly the right place on Jupiter. You could witness consternation turn into puzzlement, and then exultation. They cheered; they screamed; they jumped up and down. Smiles filled the room. They broke out champagne. Here was a group of young American scientists -- about a third of them, including the team leader, Heidi Hammel, women -- and you could imagine youngsters all over the word thinking that it might be fun to be a scientists, that this might be a good daytime job, or even a means to spiritual fulfillment."

    Please discuss, I'll contribute my perspective as needed, if that's quite alright.
  2. The 'youngsters' witnessed what scientists lived in action....therfore their (the scientists) way/truth of spiritual fullfillment. Just a guess.
  3. Definitely, I think you got it. :D

  4. lol...'first'
  5. I guess witnessing the event confirmed that their science was valid.

    But to say that it's 'spiritual fulfillment', I think is going a bit too far.
  6. Interesting -- why?

    Who defines what "spiritual fulfillment" is? Whether is has been attained or not?
  7. If you dont believe in 'spirit' type shit GG...then you can think about it like 'whatever gets your motor going'....haha
  8. Are you asking if science can be a way to spiritual fulfillment?
  9. I believe that was what Sam alluded to.....anything (in the right context) can be means of spiritual fullfillment, imo....Life is meant to be lived that way.
  10. /thread
  11. I agree.

  12. Discovery is one of the paths to spiritual fulfillment.
  13. People are so afraid of words. Fundamentalist religious people are afraid of "science," assuming it is not "creation science." Many atheists become afraid of "religion," or "spirituality." The response to this would likely be "I'm not afraid!" because they don't like the word afraid. People care so much about word choice, as if their meaning is static.
  14. Discovery is one of the biggest aspects to spirituality. However, I'd like to ask, do you guys think fulfillment is subjectivly possible? I would say I am content, but assuming knowledge/discovery is infinite, couldn't we say the hunger is always there to learn more? Or grasp for new concepts? Or learn more about life... to me, fulfillment almost equals a willingness to end your life. (not that I'm afraid of death) There's always more to keep us holding on.

  15. lol^^no willingness to end life.....much the opposite....Imo, it just means you now live life self-actualized....and you have nothing but life the way you please..and yes always building on that by learning.
  16. I think a certain curiosity always remains, or at least always has the possibility to creep up. Enlightenment does not mean the end of the acquisition of knowledge(even though this thread isn't about enlightenment, it's relatable to the post above). You may lose the feeling that you "must" learn more, but it's always fun to learn, and there is no end to learning, as you say.
  17. Knowledge/discovery/self-actualization is one means to spiritual enlightenment, no doubt about it.

    According to the Bhagavad Gita it is one of the two paths, the other being selfless service to others/worship. According to them, this is the easier/faster way. But to each their own, of course :D

    And there's no reason why they can't be traveled in conjunction with one another. of course :)
  18. Knowledge path FTW! :p
  19. #19 DBV, Aug 2, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 2, 2011
    Yes, so we could say it gives us contentment, but not necessarily fulfillment, right? Fulfillment, to me, represents some sort of ending to a process that never ends (knowledge/evolution). I feel like were just playing semantics now, but it was the only thing I didn't agree with, so I thought I'd question other peoples opinions.
  20. Certainly I'm not qualified to say what is and what isn't spiritual fulfillment, but to me, witnessing the comet hit the planet is just a bit too... small of an event... to say it's a spiritual fulfillment.

    May be entering a black hole or achieving the speed of light... but watching a comet hit a planet through TV monitors?

    Hm... may be... may be not...

    Oh, I certainly do believe in 'spirit' type shit... very much.

Share This Page