March 6, 2012

Stars: They're Just Like Us

Q: "What is the most astounding fact you can share with us about the Universe?"
A: “When I look up at the night sky, and I know that, yes, we are part of this Universe, we are in this Universe, but perhaps more important than both of those facts is that the Universe is in us. When I reflect on that fact, I look up—many people feel small, because they’re small and the Universe is big, but I feel big, because my atoms came from those stars.”

This is Neil DeGrasse Tyson, director of the Hayden Planetarium in the Department of Astrophysics at the American Museum of Natural History, giving TIME Magazine a glimpse of his stunning eloquence and intellect. More here: 

Tyson is the rare physicist who speaks to the ontological implications of science: the conceptual leap from calculus to matter is the toughest to reconcile within our everyday reality, especially within an ideological culture that upholds human life as superior, more complex, or even unique. Tyson speaks of "atoms," a nod to the fact that he's an astrophysicist, not a particle physicist, but his emotion when speaking of a greater connectivity suggests that the quest for deeper truths--the unification of cosmology and quantum mechanics--lies not just within ourselves, but within everything in the universe. 

No comments:

Post a Comment