I was thinking today about the vastness of space. I think about that from time to time. I've had this interest/obsession with the stories of Apollo moon landings (don't start with me, Sarah. They happened). I find it amazing that when my grandmother was born, her parents used a wagon to get from place to place, and by the time she was an adult with her own children, men had walked across the surface of the moon.
There is no atmosphere up on the moon which means there aren't any winds. Gene Cernon who flew to the moon with Apollo 15 carved his daughter's initials in dust before climbing back into the lunar lander and heading home. Tracy Dawn Cernon - TDC. It is still carved in the dust of the moon to this day.
My favorite astronaut is Alan Bean, who flew with Apollo 12. He was the 4th man to walk on the moon. All the men of the Apollo program were traditional men - they didn't talk about their feelings, or practice acupuncture, or have group therapy sessions. Yet, Bean was an artist. His time on the moon greatly impacted him. Breaking free of the bonds of earth, also gave him the courage to break free from the rigid definitions of what makes someone "manly". His artwork, focuses greatly on a subject dear to him -- his good friends and their road trip. He recognized that in the end, a trip to the moon, really was that -- a road trip.
Those who have been in space, have all been greatly impacted by that time. The great universal experience they have is a simple observation; there are no lines between the countries in space. Viewing the earth from the distance makes it pointedly clear that we are all in this together. The things that divide us, are not just minuscule -- they are man-made - created by us.
There are some who fear that sort of globalist thinking, but I've heard many an astronaut say in their interviews that with one sweeping glance you can take in the entire globe, and it is easy to understand that everything that happens on it, does not happen in isolation. It would be ridiculous to think that a drought on one side of the globe has NOTHING to do with life on the other side, and the lines we chose to divide the world aren't even real. From space there is no us, there is no them -- there is only we.
I try to remember this, although I fail more often than I succeed. It is easy to think that place where you live is best or right, or that other places are wrong. The truth is the earth is populated by humans. Some humans live near me, and others live far away, but we are all living here together on this good earth.
I should also point out that today is officially, World Kindness Day, but really if we took a look ourselves from a distance, we would understand that every day, is world kindness day because in the long run, we are only being kind to ourselves.
Keep moving forward,