The music, the moment

Published October 29, 2006 · Estimated reading time: 0 minutes Less than a minute · Share your thoughts
Filed under ,

Something random I drew last week, a new addition to my very slowly growing sketch gallery, aptly named “the music, the moment”… the source happens to be my current ringtone.

Permanent linkMarzieh Ghiasi

Home, on the pale blue dot

Published October 24, 2006 · Estimated reading time: 4 minutes · One response so far
Filed under , ,

The past few months have been quite eventful to say the least, and hopefully, once I am able to catch my breath I will be able to post pictures that reflect the daily life and my discoveries while adjusting to life in Montreal.

Every college guide must begin with the obligatory “coming to university is an once-in-a-lifetime learning experience” and other variations. As it has been clearly established by now, college-guides are not meant to be taken seriously other than for one’s viewing pleasure of glossy photo shoots involving abnormally happy people, and permanently-green… deciduous trees. Perhaps I am being a tad harsh on the generic college-guide, there may after all be some truths to those brochures that we all so fondly chuck out.

Learning experiences? Well, the classes and professor have been stellar, not a too radical departure from high-school as everyone would have you believe, but definitely a lot bigger classes, a lot more choices, and a lot more interesting lectures. I have had the opportunity to meet people– literally from all over the world, although there always manages to be a Nova Scotian right around the corner, not to mention the home in a box [aka. gigantic Scotia bank tower presiding on Rue Sherbrooke]. It’s great to be in a campus where there is always something going on and a cause to get involved in [an esperanto-speaking group? Surely you kid *brain explodes* …]. Yes, Coming here has indeed been a grand change and huge learning experience, moreso than I ever expected, and in ways that I never expected. For instance, it is definitely possible to memorize word-for-word an entire 80 page biology manual, although not before resorting to consuming the sheets in hopes of retaining the information. And, of course, as fun as it maybe to experiment with food, chocolate is a standalone food, it is not meant for experimentation. Just in case you are wondering, yes, I tried… no, it is not a good idea to use chocolate as pasta sauce, nor does it mix well with cheese.

Anyways, I just wanted to share a quote from Carl Sagan that I found tremendously inspiring when I was younger. Pale Blue Dot, displayed below, is the infamous picture of Earth, 4 billion miles out in space, at the edge of the solar system, taken by Voyager 1 in 1990, followed by Carl Sagan’s remarks on what this picture represents. I would like to share this because I find what Sagan presents to be both unsettling and moving on a fundamental level. Sometimes I find the existentialist parts of me, parts that desire to set the human definition and experience as encompassing all that is real and all that matters at odds with his perspective. At the same time however, I find myself awed by the profound truth in Sagan’s description of the entirety of humanity’s experiences on this planet.

“Our posturing, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves….

The Pale Blue Dot

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. … There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.”

-Carl Sagan

Permanent linkMarzieh Ghiasi