Astronauts spotting cities from the International Space Station

 

The overview effect is a cognitive shift in awareness reported by some astronauts and refers to the experience of seeing firsthand the reality of the Earth in space, which is immediately understood to be a tiny, fragile ball of life, “hanging in the void”, shielded and nourished by a paper-thin atmosphere. From space, astronauts claim, national boundaries vanish, the conflicts that divide people become less important, and the need to create a planetary society with the united will to protect this “pale blue dot” becomes both obvious and imperative.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overview_effect

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