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The Cosmos television series and this book represent a hopeful experiment in communicating some of the ideas, methods and joys of science. The book and the. ENGLISH, POPULAR SCIENCE, ASTRONOMY. IdentifierCosmos-CarlSagan. Identifier-arkark://t9h46f42q. OcrABBYY FineReader On March 9, COSMOS: A SPACETIME. ODYSSEY debuted simultaneously across multiple U.S. Fox networks, including Fox. Broadcasting.
Cosmos Key Idea 2: The stars and planets have always called to us, teaching us about the earth and its place in the universe. From before the dawn of history, humans have looked up into the heavens and tried to make sense of those little dots that twinkle away in the night sky. Some 40, generations ago, our nomadic ancestors fixed the dates of annual meetings with other tribes in other lands by looking at the position of the stars.
They also used the stars to calculate the rhythm of the seasons to know when certain fruits would be ready to pick, and when antelope and buffalo would migrate. This is all possible because of the regular and predictable movement of heavenly bodies. This observation led Ptolemy, who worked in the Library of Alexandria in the second century CE, to posit a theory.
To Ptolemy, the earth was the center of the universe and the stars and planets revolved around it. It was a theory that stood for centuries. Only in did Nicolaus Copernicus radically theorize that the earth, and the other planets, revolved around the sun. Now the sun was seen as the center of the universe.
The model was further refined around 60 years later. German-born astronomer Johannes Kepler got his hands on the impressively comprehensive data compiled by the late Tycho Brahe, a Danish nobleman and observational astronomer.
Carl Sagan - Cosmos.pdf
This formed the first of his three laws of planetary motion, and these remain in use in astrophysics to this day. Kepler also had a very interesting theory. This would explain why planets speed up when they came closest to the sun.
Cosmos Key Idea 3: Venus is hellish and inhospitable, but Mars could be habitable. As Venus is 60 million km closer to the sun than earth, it gets mighty hot. It gets worse. Astronomical spectroscopy is used to analyze the light reflected off Venus. It shows that the atmosphere is, in fact, 96 percent carbon dioxide.
And up above its surface, the clouds are made of concentrated sulfuric acid. These create the greenhouse effect that helps keep the planet hot. Things are a little different on Mars.
Mars is the closest planet to earth, and in some ways is pretty similar. It has polar ice caps, white clouds, dust storms. Even its days are 24 hours long. Lowell convinced himself that there were indications of water canals on the surface of Mars. He thought that these must have been dug by intelligent life on the planet. Even though his conviction was, of course, later proven false, the myth still persisted in popular culture.
The biggest challenge for humans living on Mars would be the sourcing of water. There are no open bodies of water on Mars, and there is no water in its atmosphere. Things get more complicated still because the atmospheric pressure is so low, water would boil away a lot faster than it does on earth. All in all, if there are going to be real Martians one day, it might just be us humans.
Extraterrestrials would definitely look very different from us. Just think of all the variety of life on earth. From single-cell bacteria to whales, insects and humans, evolution has created a rich cornucopia.
After all, this other planet would have completely different conditions and a different evolutionary history. What about Jupiter? Well, Jupiter is an enormous gas planet with plenty of hydrogen and helium in its atmosphere. If there were lifeforms there, they might exist as giant gas balloons, perhaps even kilometers across. But what kind of message they would send?
Something like a sequence of prime numbers might work well. And what about us? Could we make physical contact with life on other planets? In , Project Orion was initiated. The idea was to create an interstellar aircraft that would be propelled by massive amounts of energy.
This energy would be produced by small atomic explosions outside the aircraft. But in fact, modern science has much deeper roots. The Ionians of Greece were its forefathers. Ionia was a region in the eastern Mediterranean: what we might think of now as the eastern Greek islands and the western coast of Turkey. In ancient times, it stood at the crossroads of civilization. Not only was Ionia a center of trade, but the region was also influenced by Egyptians, Babylonians and other mighty civilizations.
Each of these civilizations had its gods, who were thought to reign over the territory.
An Introduction to Astronomy and Astrophysics
This left the Ionians a little confused. Who were they to worship, the Greek god Zeus or the Babylonian Marduk? The conclusion they came to was startling. They determined that principles of physics and laws of nature governed the world instead. The Ionians started experimenting and so ushered in a scientific revolution. Perhaps most famously, Democritus invented the concept of the atom in around BCE. Consequently, he determined that every object could be thought of as comprising atoms and empty spaces.
Sadly, however, experimental Ionian approaches and learning were suppressed for centuries. We can blame the Greek Pythagoras for this. Pythagoras and his disciples believed that the world, being perfect and divine, obeyed set geometrical laws. All they needed was pure thought and nothing else. Experimentation had no place in this academic mind-set. In the fifth to fourth centuries BCE, they started to make the argument that experimenting was no different from manual work in the fields.
It was, therefore, work only suitable for slaves. Pure intellectual work should, conversely, be theoretical. When Christianity grew dominant, it also took the Pythagorean notion of a perfect divine world.
Consequently, scientific endeavors that might have led to new doctrine-threatening discoveries were suppressed. This censorship cast a long shadow. You may or may not believe in astrology, but to judge from the popularity of astrology these days, you will probably read your horoscope. According to a recent poll, more Americans set store in astrology than in science or God. You are an Aries. You open your newspaper to the astrology column and read an analysis of the Aries personality.
It says among other things: You have the knack of creating an atmosphere of thought and movement, unhampered by petty jealousies. But you have the tendency to scatter your talents to the four winds. Hm, you say, quite true. So you go back to Aries: Nothing hurts you more than to be unjustly mistreated or suspected. But you have a way about you, a gift for seeing things through despite all obstacles and distractions. You also have a desperate need to be liked. So you have been wounded more often than you will admit.
The first question is: Why is it that both descriptions seem to fit you—or, for that matter, why do you seem to recognize yourself in the selfanalysis of all twelve astrological signs? Or, to put it another way, why is it that you can recognize and identify the planets Jupiter and Venus so readily after reading a bit and taking one look, yet have so much trouble identifying yourself from twelve descriptions when, presumably, you know yourself much better than you know Jupiter and Venus?
You have seen yourself a thousand times in the mirror, face to face. No sight is more familiar. Or the first time you saw yourself in a home movie: What about the first time you heard your recorded voice—did you recognize it?
Why is it that, when you are shown a group photograph in which you are present, you always and probably covertly seek yourself out? To see what you look like? Has this ever happened to you? You are walking along a street of stores. There are other people walking. You catch a glimpse in a store window of a reflection of a person.
For a second or so you do not recognize the person. He, she, seems a total stranger. Then you realize it is your own reflection.
Then in a kind of transformation, the reflection does in fact become your familiar self. One of the peculiar ironies of being a human self in the Cosmos: The question is: Why is it that in your entire lifetime you will never be able to size yourself up as you can size up somebody else—or size up Saturn—in a tensecond look?
Why is it that the look of another person looking at you is different from everything else in the Cosmos? That is to say, looking at lions or tigers or Saturn or the Ring Nebula or at an owl or at another person from the side is one thing, but finding yourself looking into the eyes of another person looking at you is something else. See how you would answer the questions. Think of five acquaintances, not close friends, not lovers, not family members.
Thus, you might describe an acquaintance named Gary McPherson as fairly good company, moderately trustworthy, funny but a little malicious, and so on. Or Linda Ellison: And so on. Note that most if not all of your adjectives could be placed on a finite scale, say from a plus ten to a minus ten. Now, having described five acquaintances, do the following. Read these two sentences carefully: You possess an infinite potentiality.
Now answer this question as honestly as you can: Which of these two sentences more nearly describes you? CHECK a , b , neither , both. If you checked both —60 percent of respondents did—how can that be? That is to say, are you happy with either of the two standard versions of sexuality: One, the biological—that the sex drive is one among several needs and drives evolved through natural selection as a means of sustaining the life of the organism and ensuring the survival of the species.
Thus, sexual desire is one item on a list which includes other such items as hunger, thirst, needs of shelter, nest-building, migration, and so on.
The other, the religious-humanistic—sex is an expression, perhaps the ultimate expression, of love and communication between a man and a woman, and is best exemplified in marriage, raising children, the sharing of a life, family, home, and fireside.
If the sexual drive is but one of several biological needs, why are we living in the most eroticized society in history? Or are you more confused about sexuality than any other phenomenon in the Cosmos?
Do you know why it is that men and women exhibit sexual behavior undreamed of among the other several million species, with every conceivable sexual relation between persons, or with only one person, or between a male and female, or between two male persons, or two female persons, or two males and one female, or two females and one male; relationships moreover which can implicate every orifice and appendage of the human body and which bear no relation to the reproduction and survival of the species?
Is the following statement true or false: Pornography is not an aberration of a few sexually frustrated middle-aged men in gray raincoats; it is rather a salient and prime property of modern consciousness, of three hundred years of technology and the industrial revolution, and is symptomatic of a radical disorder in the relation of the self to other selves which generally manifests itself in the abstracted state of one self male and the degradation of another self female to an abstract object of satisfaction.
Which of the selves, if any, do you identify with? The self is either unconscious of itself or only conscious of itself insofar as it is identified with a cosmological myth or classificatory system, e. Ask a Bororo tribesman: Who are you?
He may reply: I am parakeet. Ask an L. I am a tiger. What is your self? My self in this life is impaled on the wheel of non-being, obscured by the veil of unreality. But it can realize itself by penetrating the veil of maya and plumbing the depths of self until it achieves nirvana, nothingness, or the Brahman, God.
The atman self is the Brahman God. The self sees itself as a creature, created by God, estranged from God by an aboriginal catastrophe, and now reconciled with him. Before the reconciliation, the self is, as Paul told the Ephesians, a stranger to every covenant, with no promise to hope for, with the world about you and no God. But now the self becomes a son of God, a member of a family of selves, and is conscious of itself as a creature of God embarked upon a pilgrimage in this life and destined for happiness and reunion with God in a later life.
One sociological view of the self is that the self achieves its identity by taking roles and modeling its own role from the roles of others, e.
The self is an individual entity created by God and endowed with certain inalienable rights and the freedom to pursue happiness and fulfill its potential. It achieves itself through work, participation in society, family, the marketplace, the political process, cultural activities, sports, the sciences, and the arts. It follows that in a free and affluent society the self should succeed more often than not in fulfilling itself.
Happiness can be pursued and to a degree caught. In a free and affluent society, the self is free to divert itself endlessly from itself.
The pursuit of happiness becomes the pursuit of diversion, and in this society the possibilities of diversion are endless and as readily available as eight hours of television a day: TV, sports, travel, drugs, games, newspapers, magazines, Vegas.
With the passing of the cosmological myths and the fading of Christianity as a guarantor of the identity of the self, the self becomes dislocated, Jefferson or no Jefferson, is both cut loose and imprisoned by its own freedom, yet imprisoned by a curious and paradoxical bondage like a Chinese handcuff, so that the very attempts to free itself, e.
The rational Jeffersonian pursuit of happiness embarked upon in the American Revolution translates into the flaky euphoria of the late twentieth century. Every advance in an objective understanding of the Cosmos and in its technological control further distances the self from the Cosmos precisely in the degree of the advance —so that in the end the self becomes a spacebound ghost which roams the very Cosmos it understands perfectly.
Or that self which is so totally absorbed in the pursuit of art or science as to be selfless. The self sees itself as a sovereign and individual consciousness, liberated by education from the traditional bonds of religion, by democracy from the strictures of class, by technology from the drudgery of poverty, and by selfknowledge from the tyranny of the unconscious—and therefore free to pursue its own destiny without God.
The self sees itself as a creature of the state, fascist or communist, and understands its need to be specified by the needs of the state. Twenty-Question Multiple-Choice Self-Help Quiz to test your knowledge of the peculiar status of the self, your self and other selves, in the Cosmos, and your knowledge of what to do with your self in these, the last years of the twentieth century 1 The Amnesic Self: He will not necessarily develop pneumonia or cancer or schizophrenia, but inevitably he will be overtaken by amnesia.
He or she finds himself in a strange place, having forgotten his old place, his family, friends, business. He begins a new life in a new place with a new girlfriend, new job. After a while in his new life he begins to receive clues about his old life. A stranger stops him in the street and calls him by a strange name. For the moviegoer there occurred first the pleasure of the prospect of a new life and the infinite possibilities of the self as represented by Gregory Peck.
I would like to ask you a medical question. All right. How would you diagnose a pain in the right upper quadrant? It is obvious you are a doctor. Here is an extra dividend for the moviegoer who is identifying with Peck or Bergman. Ingrid is on the track of who he is who you are. You are a doctor, an identity which seems to interest women more than, say, a banker or an auto dealer.
Is amnesia a favorite device in fiction and especially soap operas because a The character in the soap opera is sick and tired of himself and his life and wants a change. CHECK ONE A variant of the amnesic-plot device is the inadvertent return of the amnesiac to home territory, where he is welcomed by a lovely woman, unknown to him, who is evidently his wife.
The crucial scene is his being led off to bed. A non-amnesic equivalent is a twin or look-alike who is mistaken for someone else—by a beautiful woman.
Invariably she finds him not merely oddly different but somehow better, more attractive, than the original. After a love scene, she looks at him wide-eyed and smiling you were never like this before! This version demonstrates that the source of pleasure for the moviegoer is not the amnesia but the certified and risk-free license to leave the old self behind and enter upon a new life, whether by amnesia or mistaken identity. Thought Experiment: Test your response to vicarious loss of self by imagining amnesia raised to the highest power.
Imagine a soap opera in which a character awakens every morning with amnesia, in a strange house with a strange attractive man or woman , welcomed by the stranger, looking out a strange window with a strange view, having forgotten the past each morning and starting life afresh, seeing the window, the view, himself, herself, in the mirror afresh and for the first time.
Does this prospect intrigue you? If it does, what does this say about your non-amnesic self? This quasi-amnesic device is clearly a variant of the earlier Lone Ranger or non-amnesic Western, with the difference that in the latter the lone cowboy moves on after his adventure, whereas in the former it is the lover who moves on. One table was made of an old transom of stained glass supported by an antique brass chandelier cut ingeniously to make the legs.
Another was a cypress stump, waxed and highly polished. Another was a big spool used for telephone cable set on end. Another was a lobster trap. Another was a Coca-Cola sign propped on Coke crates.
Another was a stone slab from an old morgue, the blood runnel used as an ash tray. Another was a hayloft door set on cut-down sawhorses. Why was not a single table designed as such rather than being a non-table doing duty as a table?
Try to imagine the circumstances under which the fifty non-tables converted to use as coffee tables would become less and less desirable until one would actually prefer an ordinary table constructed of four legs and a top. Thought Experiment II: If you say that a writing table made by Thomas Sheraton is of value because it is excellently made and beautiful, how would you go about making a writing table now that would be similarly prized as an antique two hundred years from now? The Self as Nought II: It happens that a woman will see a new fashion, a certain kind of hat, a new hairstyle, the cut and length of a skirt, a French-wrap swimsuit, and she will want it.
She downloads it. Often the source of the fashion is a famous and attractive person or a well-known couturier. It is illuminating that some fashions are set by mistake.
It is reported, for example, that when Wallis Warfield Simpson appeared at Ascot with the second button of her blouse left inadvertently unbuttoned, millions of women followed suit.
In a certain New York disco located near a hospital, interns and nurses would drop in at all hours wearing their hospital greens. Whereupon it became fashionable for non-medical people to go discoing in wrinkled hospital greens—which are now sold at J.
What does the saleslady mean when she fits a customer with an article of clothing and says: It is becoming to me. It looks nice. It really is you. That is, you are not much without it, you perceive yourself as mousy, and you are a something—your self in fact, your new true self—with it. CHECK ONE But if the saleslady means what she says—and since you have gone through any number of such styles in the past— then it must follow that the other articles in the past were also you and are no longer.
How can that be? It could only be because some sort of consumption takes place. The nought which is you has devoured the style and been sustained for a while as a non-you until the style is emptied out by the noughting self.
Consider the stages of the consumption: First stage: You see an article or a style worn by a person with a certain authority. At first glance it seems outlandish, even absurd. Or ugly, like the long skirt of the New Look of the s. Second stage: You see more people wearing it. It is still outlandish, but it is an outlandish something and you are fading. Third stage: You try it on. The saleslady says it is you. You laugh, shrug, shake your head, but secretly the possibility is born that it can be you.
Fourth stage: You download it and wear it. For a while, it i s you and you are it. That is, you perceive it as informing you and you as informed, either as a new you or the old real you which has never come to light before. Fifth stage: Gradually the new style becomes everyday, quotidian, rendered neutral.
No matter how exotic it is, like a morsel to which an amoeba is attracted and which it surrounds and takes into itself, it is devoured and becomes part of the transparent flowing substance of the amoeba. Sixth stage: After a sufficient lapse of time, the husk or residue of the new style is excreted and becomes an oddity, a slightly shameful thing but still attached, like the waste in the excretory vacuole of the amoeba.
You will laugh or frown and put it away. It looks queer. It is not only not you. It is a not-you. Assuming there is a certain perceived, or misperceived, authority behind the setting of a fashion, e.
Queenlily June with a rose in her hair Moves to her prime with a languorous air Nice lines—because he misread Queenlily as Queen Lily, when the poet had only intended the adverb of queenly. While her statement seems absurd to her husband or a connivance to get more clothes, she is telling the truth. She does not have a thing to wear because all the things hanging in her closet have been emptied out and become invisible.
She might as justifiably reply to him: This one works perfectly well. The applause is of a particular character, startled and immediate, as if the applauders cannot help themselves. Such a response is understandable if one hails from a hamlet like Abita Springs, Louisiana, and Carson mentioned Abita Springs.
But the applause also occurs at the mention of New York or Chicago. You are a native of New York City, you live in New York, work in New York, travel about the city with no particular emotion except a mild boredom, unease, exasperation, and a dislike especially for, say, Times Square and Brooklyn, and a longing for a Connecticut farmhouse.
You make enough money and move to a Connecticut farmhouse. Later you become an astronaut and wander in space for years. You land on a strange, unexplored you think planet.
A majority of respondents agreed in ranking one fear above all others, above fear of sickness, accidents, crime, war, even death.
It is the fear of speaking before a group, stage fright. Yet in the conventional objective scientific view, man is an organism among other organisms and a man should therefore not be terrified to be surrounded by his own kind, other like organisms who are not merely not hostile but by the very nature of the occasion well disposed, and to open his mouth and speak in a language he has learned from his fellowmen.
What is so frightening to so many people about speaking to an audience? Is an audience of 50 million a million times more terrifying than 50?
As evidence of such a danger, note the uneasiness of a playgoing audience when an actor forgets his lines or a congregation when a preacher falls silent for no apparent reason. The escalating terror of such a silence is a public phenomenon: If you are a shy person, which of the following situations is the most terrifying to you? Which is the least terrifying? In the first, you are a mid-echelon executive in the sales division of a large company in which you are both successful and well liked.
You are scheduled to deliver a speech at the annual banquet, an honor. You have months to prepare. Pursued down a street by his enemies, he ducks into a doorway which happens to be a stage door and finds himself on stage at a political rally where he is mistaken for the guest speaker and introduced. He has not the faintest idea what he is supposed to talk about. Only you have survived. The earth is invaded by extraterrestrial beings. They capture you and haul you up before a large tribunal and make it known to you that you must give an account of yourself, what you are doing here, why you should be spared, etc.
Explain your choice. Explain why Moses was tongue-tied and stagestruck before his fellow Jews but had no trouble talking to God. Explain on what grounds Christ told his followers not to worry if they were arrested and required to testify before a court of their enemies.
You will know what to say, he told them. That is, what is the worst case, the worst thing that can happen? Imagine that you are Johnny Carson and find yourself caught in an intolerable one-on-one conversation at a cocktail party from which there is no escape. Which of the two following events would you prefer to take place: If your choice is 2 , explain why it is possible for a true conversation to take place under the conditions of 2 but not 1.
IF YOU ARE a shy person, is it better to accept your shyness, or to seek help from a psychotherapist in order to become an assertive outgoing person, or perhaps to read a book about overcoming shyness? Psychiatrists and psychologists treat disorders. Shyness is a symptom of such a disorder. Therefore, it is reasonable to seek such help. In which of the two following situations would you find yourself more shy? You are invited to a party.
You have a choice of going as any one of these four people. Which would you choose? What are you doing here? Let me tell you something interesting that happened to me today— nothing; or: My head is killing me, would you mind massaging my neck?
The townspeople showed a tremendous excitement about the presence of the film company in their midst. Not only did they make the town and even their homes available to the film crew, allowing their very lives to be disrupted, some town folk even expressed the strongest possible desire to be in the film, if only in the most insignificant roles.
A quiet woman, the librarian, said that it would be the greatest event of her life. The actors also enjoyed their stay in the town and the attention they were getting. Even though they, the actors, were not held in the highest regard by the filmmakers—producers, directors, cinematographers, etc.
What roles? They were playing the roles of the superb human beings the town folk believed them to be. Everyone in town remarked what nice people they were. So they became nice.
They became nicer than saints. Question I: Which of the two, the actors or the townspeople, are the more real, that is, perceive themselves as more nearly what they are? Though both actors and town folk have reached for what they perceived to be a heightened reality, it, reality itself, has somehow fallen between them, like a dropped ball. Questi o n II: Test your own index of misplacement. He is very nice, almost preternaturally nice.
Which of the two would you rather be, the bank teller or the movie star?
Imagine you are walking down Madison Avenue behind Al Pacino, whom you have seen frequently in the movies but never in the flesh. He is shorter than you thought. His raincoat is thrown over his shoulder. His face takes on a characteristic expression, jaws clenched, eyes dark and luminous, like young Corleone in The Godfather. The sight of Pacino in the flesh acting like Pacino on the screen gives you a peculiar pleasure.
Then you become aware that though Pacino is looking at the articles in the window display, he is also checking his own reflection in the glass. This, too, gives you pleasure, though of a different sort. Explain the difference. The first case: Ah, there is Pacino acting just like Corleone! The second case: Ah, there is Pacino acting just like me! Of all sexual encounters on soap opera, only 6 percent occur between husband and wife.
In some cities of the United States, which now has the highest divorce rate in the world, the incidence of divorce now approaches 60 percent of married couples. A recent survey showed that the frequency of sexual intercourse in married couples declined 90 percent after three years of marriage. On a talk show a female sexologist reported that a favorite fantasy of American women, second only to oral sex, was having sex with two strange men at once.
According to the president of the North American Swing Club Association, only 3 percent of married couples who are swingers get divorces, as compared with over 50 percent of non-swinging couples. In large American cities, lunch-break liaisons between business men and women have become commonplace. Sexual activity and pregnancy in teenagers have increased dramatically in the last twenty years, in both those who have received sex education in schools and those who have not.
In some cities, more babies are born to single women than to married women. In a series of interviews, Buena Vista homosexuals admitted to sexual encounters with an average of more than strangers.
A survey by a popular magazine reported that the incidence of homosexuality in the United States had surpassed that of the Weimar Republic and is approaching that of England. Do Americans, as well as other Westerners, prefer sexual variety, both heterosexual and homosexual, because a The sexual revolution has occurred, which is nothing else but the overthrow of the unnatural repressions and taboos of 1, years of Christianity and the exploration of the free and healthy practices of a sexually liberated society.
It is only the cultural constraints of society, probably imposed by the economic necessities of an agricultural society, which required a monogamous union and children as a reliable labor source. It is Western society which is disintegrating, to a degree remarkably similar to the decline of the Roman Empire in the fifth century, when similar practices were reported.
Thus, pornography is something new in the world, having no parallel in ancient, so-called pagan cultures. Accordingly, there is little if any difference between present-day promiscuity and that of, say, the Victorian era. The so-called sexual revolution is nothing but the legitimizing of the secret behavior of the Victorians and its extension to women.
As a consequence of the scientific and technological revolution, there has occurred a displacement of the real as a consequence of which genital sexuality has come to be seen as the substratum of all human relationships, of friendship, love, and the rest.
A letter to Dear Abby: I am a twenty-three-year-old liberated woman who has been on the pill for two years. It therefore needs to exercise every option in order to reassure itself that it is not a ghost but is rather a self among other selves.
One such option is a sexual encounter. Another is war. Indeed, the most amazing of all the creatures of the Cosmos: Yet not really amazing, for only if the abstracted ghost has an erection can it, like Jove spying Europa on the beach, enter the human condition. At the height of a hurricane, husbands come to themselves and can even embrace their wives.
During Hurricane Camille, one Biloxi couple, taking refuge in a tree house, reported that, during the passage of the eye, they had intercourse for the first time in years. Man is undergoing a mutation in sexual behavior which will in the end, like the tooth of the saber-toothed tiger, render him extinct. Since most of the emerging varieties of sexual expression—homosexuality, anal and oral sex—do not reproduce the species and therefore have no survival value, the species will become extinct.
It has always been so. That is to say, the sexual behavior of humans has not changed. Therefore, there is nothing to explain. The guests today are: Joyce Friday, a well-known talk-show sex therapist, or in media jargon: So what?
Whose business is it? My recreation is Buena Vista Park and the strangers I meet there. I contribute to United Way. What about the kids who might see you? You know what I mean. Nobody sees me. Say, Bill. Is there some sort of signal? I mean, how do you and the other guy know —help me out— BILL: Eye contact, or we show a bit of handkerchief here. How about it, Doc? Applause from audience I think he ought to return to his steady live-in friend and work out a mature, creative relationship.
You might be interested to know that studies have shown that stable gay couples are more creative than straights. How about it, Bill?
Yeah, right. But I still cruise Buena Vista. How about you, Allen? I work hard, am happily married, love my wife and family, also support United Way, served in the army. What a delight it is, to see a handsome mature woman, maybe in the secretarial pool, maybe in a bar, restaurant, anywhere, exchange eye contact, speak to her in a nice way, respect her as a person, invite her to join me for lunch no sexual harassment in the office—I hate that!
What a joy to go with her up in the elevator of the downtown Holiday Inn, both of you silent, relaxed, smiling, anticipating—The door of the room closes behind you.
You look at her, take her hand. No closed-circuit TV. Do you know what we did last time? She loves Puccini. What are ya handing me? No, no. Okay-okay, ladies, hold it a second. Well, actually, Vera has a low sex drive. Studies have shown that open marriages can be growth experiences for both partners. However— groans from audience —However: It seems to me that Vera may be getting the short end here.
But could I ask you this? Have you and Vera thought about reenergizing your sex life? Well, ah— DR. Now, Doc— DR. Oh boy. Thank the good Lord for good sponsors. Turns to Penny, a thin, inattentive, moping teenager, even possibly a pre-teen: PENNY chewing something: Wait a minute, Penny. Now this, your being here, is okay with your parents, right?
Oh, sure. Camera pans over audience, settling on a couple with mild, pleasant faces. About the crying need for sex education in our schools. Oh, I had all that stuff at Ben Franklin. I had been on the pill for a year. Oh, you mean you slipped up, got careless? NO, I did it on purpose.
Did what on purpose? I mean I wanted to get pregnant. Why was that, Penny?
My best friend was pregnant. Groans, laughter DR. This girl is no more equipped with parenting skills than a child. She is a child. I hope she realizes she still has viable options. How about it, Penny? No, I want to have my baby. I think babies are neat. Studies have shown that unwanted babies suffer 85 percent more child abuse and percent more neuroses later in life.
Okay, now what have we got here? There is an interruption. Confusion at the rear of the studio. Heads turn. Three strangers, dressed outlandishly, stride down the aisle. Holy smoke! Clearly, the audience thinks, they are part of the act. The three strangers are indeed outlandish. One is a tall, thin, bearded man dressed like a sixteenth-century reformer. Indeed, he could be John Calvin, in his black cloak, black cap with short bill, and snug earflaps.
The second wears the full-dress uniform of a Confederate officer. Though he is a colonel, he is quite young, surely no more than twenty-five. Renowned both for his gallantry in battle and for his chivalry toward women, the beau ideal of the South, he engaged in sixty artillery duels, won them all, lost not a single piece. The third is at once the most ordinary-looking and yet the strangest of all.
His dress is both modern and out-of-date. It is as if he were a visitor from the Cosmos, from a planet ten or so light-years distant, who had formed his notion of earthlings from belated transmissions of TV, from watching the Ed Sullivan Show, old Chester Morris movies, and Morey Amsterdam. Or, to judge from his speaking voice, he could have been an inveterate listener during the Golden Age of radio and modeled his speech on that of Harry Von Zell.
Who are these guys? I got it. Famous historical figures? You know, folks, they do that show in the studio down the hall. General laughter.
Sharkey taping. Okay already. Okay, who we got here? This is Moses? General Robert E. And who is this guy? Harry Truman? And where were you listening to us? In the green room. Where else? Then what do you think? What did you say your name was, Reverend? John Calvin. Who else? Okay, we got to break here for these messages.
But when the show returns, John Calvin, who does not understand commercial breaks, has jumped the gun and is in mid-sentence. Which they are predestined to do or not to do, so why bother to discuss it?
Now wait a minute, Reverend. But what if others disagree with you in all good faith? Sexual preference? Puzzled, he turns for help to the Confederate officer and the Cosmic stranger. How about you, sir? Colonel John Pelham, C. You heard it all in the green room, Colonel. What do I think of what, sir? Of what you heard in the green room. Of the way these folks act and talk? How do you mean, Colonel? A gentleman knows how to treat women.
He knows because he knows himself, who he is, what his obligations are. And he discharges them. At least, we can be sure of one thing. I see.
Then you agree with the reverend, I mean Reverend Calvin here. Well, I respect his religious beliefs. But I never thought much about religion one way or the other. A West Point man is an officer and a gentleman, religion or no religion. I have nothing against religion. In fact, when we studied medieval history at West Point, I remember admiring Richard Coeur de Lion and his recapturing Acre and the holy places. I remember thinking: I would have fought for him, just as I fought for Lee and the South.
Applause from the audience. What is Steve Allen up to?
Carl Sagan - Cosmos.pdf
He shakes his head, blinks: You said it, Colonel. Where were we? Can you make it brief, Harry—Mr. President, or whoever you are? I will be brief. I have taken this human form through a holographic technique unknown to you in order to make myself understood to you. Hear this.
I have a message. Whether you heed it or not is your affair. I have nothing to say to you about God or the Confederacy, whatever that is—I assume it is not the G2V Confederacy in this arm of the galaxy—though I could speak about God, but it is too late for you, and I am not here to do that.
We are not interested in the varieties of your sexual behavior, except as a symptom of a more important disorder. It is this disorder which concerns us and which we do not fully understand. As a consequence of this disorder, you are a potential threat to all civilizations in the G2V region of the galaxy. Throughout G2V you are known variously and jokingly as the Ds or the DDs or the DLs, that is, the ding-a-lings or the death-dealers or the death-lovers.
Of all the species here and in all of G2V, you are the only one which is by nature sentimental, murderous, self-hating, and selfdestructive. You are two superpowers here. The other is hopeless, has already succumbed, and is a death society. It is a living death and an agent for the propagation of death. You are scarcely better—there is a glimmer of hope for you—but that is of no interest to me. If the two of you destroy each other, as appears likely, it is of no consequence to us.
To tell you the truth, G2V will breathe a sigh of relief. The danger is that you may not destroy each other and that your present crude technology may constitute a threat to G2V in the future. I am here to tell you three things: Within the next twentyfour hours, your last war will begin. There will occur a twenty-megaton airburst one mile above the University of Chicago, the very site where your first chain reaction was produced.
Every American city and town will be hit. You will lose plus-minus million immediately, plus-minus 50 million later. I have been commissioned to collect a specimen of DD and return with it so that we can study it toward the end of determining the nature of your disorder. Accordingly, I propose to take this young person referred to as Penny—for two reasons. One, she is perhaps still young enough not to have become hopeless. Two, she is pregnant and so we will have a chance to rear a DD in an environment free of your noxious influence.
Then perhaps we can determine whether your disorder is a result of some peculiar earth environmental factor or whether you are a malignant sport, a genetic accident, the consequence of what you would have called, quite accurately, in an earlier time an MD—mutatio diabolica, a diabolical mutation.
It is of no consequence to us whether you do it or not, because you will no longer be a threat to anyone. This is only a small gesture of goodwill to a remnant of you who may survive and who may have the chance to start all over—though you will probably repeat the same mistake. We have been students of your climatology for years. I have here a current read-out and prediction of the prevailing wind directions and fallout patterns for the next two weeks.
It so happens that the place nearest you which will escape all effects of both blast and fallout is the community of Lost Cove, Tennessee. We do not anticipate a stampede to Tennessee. Our projection is that very few of you here and you out there in radio land will attach credibility to this message.
But the few of you who do may wish to use this information. There is a cave there, corn, grits, collard greens, and smoked sausage in abundance. That is the end of my message. I dunno. Andrews and McMeel, , p. The self deceives itself by saying that it is natural that such terrible events should be etched in the memory. It is not so simple. The fact is that the scene and the circumstances of hearing such news become invested with a certain significance and density which they do not ordinarily possess and with which ordinary events and ordinary occasions contrast unfavorably.
Two such recollections as reported to me: Charles and Jackson avenues in New Orleans when a stranger came up to me and said that the President had been shot and killed. I can remember noticing that the stranger wore an oldfashioned shirt, the kind with a tab collar and a gold pin which fitted little holes in the tabs and kept the collar snug against the neck.
Everything seemed amazingly vivid and discrete. Then he began to tell me the story of his life.
He, too, felt curiously dispensed. I can even remember exactly where I stood on the sidewalk and a sycamore tree growing through a hole in the concrete. I can still see the bark. Had you noticed the tree before?
Have you noticed it since? It was a scene between Chris Hughes and Grandpa. A bulletin was flashed on the screen. Shots have been fired into the Presidential motorcade in Dallas. As the bulletin came on, Grandpa was saying to Chris Hughes something like: But before that, the soap opera seemed more interesting than the events in Dallas?
And since? Have you resumed watching As the World Turns? During the week following Pearl Harbor, the incidence of suicide declined dramatically across the nation. Was this decline a consequence of 1 A rise in patriotic fervor and a sense of purpose? Peace in the s was like nothing? Everyone is cheerful today. He was arrested by the vice squad. Men stop each other in the street, shaking their heads: He was set up. Clearly, entrapment. Housewives stop watching talk shows and soap operas to call each other.
Everyone in town is moderately depressed. L—, a highly successful attorney, a cheerful and generous man, wins the biggest lawsuit of his career, a ten-million-dollar judgment against A. On the same day, he learns that his wife has been awarded the Times-Picayune cup for outstanding service to the community, his son has won a Rhodes Scholarship, and his daughter has been chosen to be Queen of the Comus Ball. His friends congratulate him. The telephone wires do not hum. Housewives watch more soap operas than ever.
He looks very solemn and dignified sitting in Notre Dame cathedral. Later he confides to an aide that he enjoys state funerals more than anything he does in Washington or even Camp David because he can relax and let his mind go blank and yet be admired for paying his respects and taking so much trouble when all he has to do is look solemn.
And also because there is de Gaulle dead as a duck and here I am alive and kicking. Imagine yourself in a place most familiar to you and therefore most nugatory; e. Or walking across your front yard in Montclair for the eight thousandth time to pick up the morning paper. Now imagine that in these circumstances you receive a piece of news, either by way of a newspaper headline, by word of mouth from a neighbor, or perhaps by overhearing a radio bulletin from a black youth carrying a Sony CF In each instance of news, check the correct answer.
Use as your guide your altered perception of your surroundings and any change in mood—e. There are four possible answers: This news is for you a Unrelievedly bad: After all, there is nothing good about the loss of several hundred thousand people. Your wife is in the house.
Nothing is ever heard again of the house or your wife. This event is a Unrelievedly bad news: You love your wife. She is a good woman, your companion and helpmate for these twenty years. Your house, moreover, is underinsured.If you do not believe that the word apple has been transformed by the percept a p p l e , do this experiment: Think of five acquaintances, not close friends, not lovers, not family members. You live in a deranged age—more deranged than usual, because despite great scientific and technological advances, man has not the faintest idea of who he is or what he is doing.
Try to imagine the circumstances under which the fifty non-tables converted to use as coffee tables would become less and less desirable until one would actually prefer an ordinary table constructed of four legs and a top. I got it. We do not anticipate a stampede to Tennessee.