Happy Carl Sagan Day!

Happy Carl Sagan Day everyone! Today is the first annual celebration of the life of Carl Sagan, the great astronomer, author and philosopher. 75 years ago, he was brought into this world and his inspiration and passion has inspired and affected us all. Carl Sagan passed away in 1996, but his legacy lives on in those he inspired, especially in Neil deGrasse Tyson.

Contact

I think a lot of people's first encounter with Carl Sagan was the movie Contact, at least, for those not actively participating in the field of astronomy or philosophy. Contact is a film released in 1997 staring Jodie Foster and teen hunk Matthew McConaughey. It's based on the Science-Fiction novel, written by Carl Sagan. It was my introduction to his philosophy and interest towards god and extraterrestrial life. I really liked Contact, but it didn't inspire me to look into the concepts any further. It was a piece of Science Fiction, and I basically treated it that way.

I haven't read Contact the novel, but I have the feeling that the story and SciFi aspects prominently displayed in the movie were really just a vehicle to talk about the greater concepts. The possibility of technological advanced life in our universe, and whether the belief of a higher power is truly representative of our species.

A Glorious Dawn

It wasn't until recently that I became a big fan on Carl Sagan. Like usual, it was something on the Internet that inspired and peaked my interest. 2 months ago, on September 17th, 2009, mild mannered John Boswell, released an auto-tuned music video of the Internet composed of quotes and clips from Carl Sagan's award-winning 1980 TV series Cosmos.

After listening to A Glorious Dawn, I could not get it out of my head. It had infected me with its soft low key melody and powerful important message. I must've listened to this song several hundred times already. I downloaded the mp3, I downloaded the mpeg video.

Since the debut of Glorious Dawn on YouTube is has become the #1 highest rated video of all time. It has become so popular that Boswell started the Symphony of Science, a musical project to bring the thoughts and works of the greatest scientific minds of our lifetime into song and inspire the world to care about Science!

Additionally, for Carl Sagan Day, A Glorious Dawn will be released as a single through Third Man Records. Side A will contain A Glorious Dawn, and Side B will contain a reproduction of the contents of the golden record encased in the Voyager space probes launched from earth in the late 70s! You can get that here: Third Man Records. I ordered my copy. ^_^

Also, additionally, Symphony of Science has released a second song, "We are all Connected", featuring Carl Sagan, Richard Feynman, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and Bill Nye. ^_^

All songs and videos are available on the Symphony of Science website at http://www.symphonyofscience.com/.

Cosmos

I was an immediate fan of Boswell, but he was really just the messenger. The real beauty of Glorious Dawn was Carl Sagan and the thoughts behind all the concepts mentioned in the song.

"If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe."

"The sky calls to us. If we do not destory ourselves, we'll one day venture to the stars."

"The Cosmos is full behind measure of elegant truths of the exquisite interrelationships of the awesome machinery of nature."

"The simplest thought like the concept of the number one has an elaborate logical underpinning."

Carl Sagan has an extraordinary talent of talking about incredibly large and complex topics in a very straight forward, direct, easy-to-understand manor. It just so happens that entire series of Cosmos is available on YouTube and Hulu. Over the course of a week or two, I watched the entire show, while playing Katamari Forever.

Cosmos was originally made in 1980. All these episodes are the 1990 versions with updates included at the end of the episodes to talk about the advancements made in those 10 years relative the subject manor in each episode.

In many ways, Cosmos is Carl Sagan's message to us. It's a message of fact explaining the universe and how it personally relates to us. It's a message of passion demonstrating the magnitude of who and what we are. It's a message of imagination challenging your mind to expand itself beyond your limitations. And it's a message of love, so to speak, pleading with the world to end needless war.

It's an amazing 13 episode journey that is a display of earth's greatest scientific achievements. Even though, it's almost 30 years old, the passionate, powerful message is timeless.. We are all one species.. We have evolved because of our nack of exploration, curiosity, imagination, and togetherness. We must embrace each other and embark on the next journey of discovery.. to the stars.

If you haven't seen Cosmos, definitely check it out. It's entirely online for free! ^_^

Happy Carl Sagan Day!

Have a great day everyone! Though, I'm somewhat confused as to which actual day Carl Sagan day is supposed to be. Carl Sagan Day dot Com says it's supposed to be today on November 7th, the anniversary of his birth. However, Wikipedia says his birthday is on the 9th. That's also when the Glorious Dawn single is released.. Who knows.. Happy Carl Sagan weekend?




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