Photo by Six Thousand Minutes Photography
Ever since I was a child, I’ve always wondered why I was put on this planet. I remember checking out my first alien book at the library when I was about nine years old. As I flipped through the pages, I was intrigued and absolutely terrified at the same time. From that point on, I’ve been convinced that there’s something else out there in the vastness of outer space. I figured that if I could understand space, I could understand life itself. In my third semester of college when I took my first astronomy class – it was overwhelming. The amount of discoveries that have been made about the far corners of our galaxy is insane. Humans haven’t even gone past the moon yet!
Our brains cannot fathom the amount of stars in our universe. There are more stars in the universe than there are grains of sand on the Earth. Space is so big that it makes us feel small. Space is humbling. When I remind myself that I’m floating on a giant rock in the infinite expanse of space, my problems no longer overwhelm me.
Not only does space humble me, but it empowers me. Here is a passage from Carl Sagan that I shared for my first taught yoga class:
“The universe took its time on you – crafted you precisely, so you could offer the world something distinct from everyone else. When you doubt how you were created, you doubt an energy greater than all of us. The oxygen atoms we breathe were created in the furnaces of cosmic nuclear reactions over 4.5 billion years ago. The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, and the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of massive collapsing stars. Everything you’ll ever need to know is within you- the secrets of the universe are imprinted on the cells of your body.”
The next time you feel insignificant, remember that there are galaxies inside of you. You are the universe expressing itself as a human for a little while.