Tag Archives: National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Spaceship Earth: The Overview Effect

“Earthrise” from the NASA archives featured in the Spaceship Earth 2020 wall calendar.

Suddenly, from behind the rim of
the moon, in long, slow-motion moments
of immense majesty, there emerges
a sparkling blue and white jewel.
It takes more than a moment to
fully realize this is Earth . . . home.
— Edgar Mitchell

The luminous vision of Earth from space reveals one human family. Boundaries and differences that seem insurmountable at ground level are diminished, illuminating the understanding that all people have the same desires for love, safety, happiness, and acceptance. The “overview effect,” first described in 1987 by science writer Frank White, is the cognitive shift experienced by astronauts while in space. With sudden clarity, they understand that Earth — home to everyone and everything we have ever known — is a pulsing, swirling, living place that we must protect.

This new wall calendar features stunning images from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) photographic archives paired with powerful quotes from philosophers, writers, and astronauts.

You realize that on that little blue-and-white thing, there is everything that means
anything to you — all history, music, poetry, art, death, birth, and love — all of it
on that little spot out there that you can cover with your thumb.
— Rusty Schweickart


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