[Thank you Hunter Payne you lovely fuck for playing this Video.]
Space videos rock. Look at that thing! The camera takes us from Florida to the Great Wall of China in five seconds. Zooming out is a cool way to gain some other kind of perspective on the planet. You can watch videos like that a forget for a moment about your anxieties for a minute. You can see that the things you build up to be the biggest things in the universe are as much a zero as every other thing. When you zoom out to infinity, looking at the part you zoomed from everything is zero.
[Carl Sagan's Contact zoom out.]
That satellite ripping around the Earth at whatever thousands of miles makes the distance of the Atlantic Ocean nothing. It’s a second. We’re so close. When we zoom out to Carl Sagan’s “pale blue dot” we become a speck. When we zoom out to the Milkyway we become much less than that. We become essentially nothing – we can’t even fathom how small a part we are in this seemingly infinite place we live in.
The picture of Earth from a spaceship makes it painfully obvious how close we all are together. It makes every achievement look like zero. It’s beautiful to see how the lights of cities all over Earth look like neural pathways in the brain. It’s awesome to realize that we are made of the same stuff as those massive stars.
Then the video ends and we are abruptly zoomed in. We see the ads on the YouTube channel and find out that Justin Bieber’s mom is writing a book about how hard her life was. We go to the store and buy a peach that we are going to be pissed about later because it went bad too fast. (My “we” is just assuming you’re in “me” I guess…) Then we pet our dogs and realize they could give less than a shit about the fact that we’re on a ball spinning a thousand miles an hour in some physical plane called space that we know pretty much nothing about.
Then something annoying happens and you forget about it too.
We snap back to the momentum of our daily mental activity where the only thing we can remember is this thing that we would rather happen or that other thing we’re glad happened. We instantly forget that the zoom-in is just as amazing as the zoom out. We forget that when we look at ourselves under a proper microscope it all disappears into infinity. We forget how close we are to the Middle East.
The easiest thing to forget is the non-zoomed. Just your exact perspective. The one we take for granted but also the only one that really matters. Your experience is the only thing that matters. It’s your experience of viewing a space video that matters, not what’s actually happening out there. What’s so exciting about it? It’s bigger than anything we can imagine. Is it experiencing? No idea, but probably not like you are.
Every day I want to zoom out to the infinity of space and time to remember how completely zero of the whole thing I am.
Every day I want to zoom in to the infinity of each of my cells and remember how I am made of an infinite amount of stuff.
Every day I want to see that my non-zoomed perspective is the best place to be. I’m sitting infinitely in the middle of infinity out and infinity in.
Before there were space videos people were able to see the connectedness of the Whole Thing, even the things we couldn’t see. The only thing you need is your own experience. That’s because your experience is your own personal infinity. It’s, by definition, the only thing you will ever d0 (even if you die and go somewhere after it will still be an experience of something).
How can we respect our experience? (Or, “How can Kyle whore whore Posts of Olde?” … but really this is the entire point of the thing - how can we learn to respect our experience of life more completely?)
You can do something completely honest.
You can take Permission to live in a way you didn’t think was possible.
You can read a book to bounce your experience off of.
You can have a Stoic write you a letter.
You can stop assuming obligations that aren’t yours.
You can stop picking teams.
You can learn to see past words.
You can realize that happiness is not the only legitimate emotion.
You can get some good Faiths.
You can declare that your desires are good for the Whole.
You can remember that a purpose outside of your own life isn’t necessary.
You can begin killing your unwanted selves.
You can free yourself from goals that aren’t for you.
You can Kill Your Dreams.
Or, of course, you can just shut your eyes right now and realize that you are the only thing you’ll ever be and that, at the same time, you have never been. You can see that every immeasurable moment you’re dying and being reborn into the next. That your imaginings of pasts and present are probably pretty far off. You can sit and realize that nobody else is having your experience. You’re the only one that can do it and that you are by far the best qualified to do it. You can sit here right now and realize that you are the exact person who is supposed to be experiencing your experiences right now. There is nobody in the Universe smarter than you.
What does inform yourself mean? It means (A) transcend and mistrust ideology. Go for direct experience. What do you think when you face the waterfall? … liberate yourself from the illusion of culture. Take responsibility for what you think and what you do. – Terrence McKenna