Shifting perspective: Power of ten
Once upon a time, Chuang Tzu dreamed that he was a butterfly, flying about enjoying itself. not know that it was Chuang Tzu. Suddenly Chuang Tzu awoke. But alas, he was uncertain whether he was Chuang Tzu dreaming that he was a butterfly, or whether it was the butterfly dreaming that it was Chuang Tzu.
1968 documentary film Powers of Ten, written and directed by Ray and Charles Eames. The film, available online, depicts the known universe in factors of ten:
Starting at a picnic by the lakeside in Chicago, this famous film transports us to the outer edges of the universe. Every ten seconds we view the starting point from ten times farther out until our own galaxy is visible only as a speck of light among many others. Returning to earth with breathtaking speed, we move inward – into the hand of the sleeping picnicker – with ten times more magnification every ten seconds. Our journey ends inside a proton of a carbon atom within a DNA molecule in a white blood cell.
You can look at every situation in the world from different angles, from close up, from far away, from upside down, and from behind. We are creating frames for what we see, hear and experience all day long, and those frames both inform and limit the way we think.
– Tina Seelig, inGenius, a Crash Course on Creativity
“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, … 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.
It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. 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, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space
“We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.”
― Abraham Lincoln
“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.”
― Horace Walpole
Do you see two faces or a vase?
Focus your eyes therefore on things that are eternal, and last the test of times.
Source: World Mysteries: Illusions