I can’t think of a topic that fascinates me more than outer space. I’ve been obsessed with space since I was 6.
I’ve been thinking about space non-stop lately thanks to my conversation with Chris Hadfield on the ISS. What I really wanted to ask Chris (but didn’t get a chance), is if he’s ever had a “samadhi” experience like the one described by the 6th man on the moon, Edgar Mitchell (who described an experience of profound connectedness after viewing Earth from Apollo 14).
This past weekend I was reading about Edgar Mitchell’s samadhi experience for the billionth time, when I found a Wikipedia page stating that not only Edgar Mitchell has had this experience, but at least four other astronauts have as well. There’s actually a NAME for it – it’s called, the Overview Effect:
“The Overview Effect is a cognitive shift in awareness reported by some astronauts and cosmonauts during spaceflight, often while viewing the Earth from orbit or from the lunar surface.
It refers to the experience of seeing firsthand the reality of the Earth in space, which is immediately understood to be a tiny, fragile ball of life, hanging in the void, shielded and nourished by a paper-thin atmosphere. From space, the astronauts tell us, national boundaries vanish, the conflicts that divide us become less important and the need to create a planetary society with the united will to protect this “pale blue dot” becomes both obvious and imperative.”
I also found a movie about it, which you can watch for free on Vimeo (see below). I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this movie – please watch it asap! And then share it! And then, go donate some money to the film makers so they can finish their latest doc. They’re obviously doing some very important work in the world.
We are all connected. And Earth is a very special, fragile, sacred place.