Tag Archives: collage

Neptune

PalmistryNeptune
Neptune

Learn more about the discovery of Neptune here.

It’s been a long hiatus! Time to get back to work.

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Talking to You

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Butterfly and Mosquito


In some remote corner of the universe, poured out and glittering in innumerable solar systems, there once was a star in which clever animals invented knowledge. That was the haughtiest and most mendacious minute of “world history”- yet only a minute. After nature had drawn a few breaths the star grew cold, and the clever animals had to die.
One might invent such a fable and still not have illustrated sufficiently how wretched, how shadowy and flighty, how aimless and arbitrary, the human intellect appears in nature. There have been eternities when it did not exist; and when it is done for again, nothing will have happened. For this intellect has no further mission that would lead beyond human life. It is human, rather, and only its owner and producer gives it such importance, as if the world pivoted around it. But if we could communicate with the mosquito, then we would learn that it floats through the air with the same self-importance, feeling within itself the flying center of the world. There is nothing within nature so despicable or insignificant that it cannot immediately be blown up like a bag by a slight breath of this power of knowledge; and just as every porter wants an admirer, the proudest human being, the philosopher, thinks that he sees the eyes of the universe telescopically focused on all sides on his actions and thoughts.
Nietzsche, Friedrich. Excerpt from “On Truth and Lie in an Extra-Moral Sense” found in The Portable Nietzsche. New York: Penguin, 1982. pp 42-43.

We are like butterflies who flutter for a day and think it’s forever.
Carl Sagan, Cosmos, 1980.

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Wings, another respiratory system which allowed us to cross the immensity of space, would not help us.  For if we went to Mars or Venus while keeping the same senses, everything we might see there would take on the same aspect as the things we know on Earth.  The only real journey, the only Fountain of Youth, would be to travel not towards new landscapes, but with new eyes, to see the universe through the eyes of another, of a hundred others, to see the hundred universes that each of them can see, or can be; and we can do that with the help of an Elstir, a Vinteuil; with them and their like we can truly fly from star to star.

Proust, Marcel.  The Prisoner.  Trans.  Carol Clark.  Ed. Christopher Prendergast.  London: Allen Lane, 2002.  Vol. 5 of In Search of Lost Time.  6 vols. 1913-27.

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