Inner Space

NASA's latest mission, Artemis I, made me think about the value of connecting to our cosmic home, and our place in it, so this newsletter edition has a cosmic thread running through it. I argued before that a cosmic perspective may be an effective antidote against hatred, (culture) wars, hostility and animosity.

It's natural for our thinking to be captured by facts and events that are prominent in the here and now, making us blind to wider implications or broader perspectives. When certain matters grip us into their salience, as if screaming in our face "I demand your attention!," it's no wonder we lose sight of everything else.

I think we could all benefit from practicing the Stoic exercise known as "the view from above," or any variation of it, as long as it's done with the same end goal in mind: to loosen our attitude and open us up to the larger frame of reference, namely, the Universe. When we allow ourselves to entertain the bigger context of our existence, to place our circumstances against the backdrop of the vastness of space and time, we'll gain a whole new perspective on what's actually important and worthwhile.

For this practice, all you need is the willingness to detach yourself for a moment from your immediate surroundings and expand your mind to capture, one at a time, your city, country, continent, then the whole Earth, the Solar System, our galaxy and even beyond it. Let yourself experience what it feels like to broaden your view so much that you get an understanding of our place in the universe. After all, humanity is all we've got.

Timeless Content

Why Some of the Smartest People Can Be So Very Stupid
by Sacha Golob | 9 minute read

This article offer a lucid and illuminating exploration into the nature of stupidity, explaining why it's different from dumbness or being mistaken, and how it can affect even the brightest among us. The author pinpoints stupidity as the employment of the wrong tool or mental model for a specific problem, and illustrates with examples how it is often a consequence of the social environment we've been raised in. And if you're curious how stupidity can sometimes be an advantage, you'll enjoy this read.

Tool for Thought

AI Chatbot | by OpenAI

I've been playing with this AI chatbot today and it's been fun seeing it generate answers to questions like "What is humanity's number one existential threat?" or "What is missing from our understanding of physics?"

If you have any existential questions or would like to be given instructions on how to complete certain tasks, you'll enjoy this tool. It's designed to allow for dialogue between humans and AI, so you can ask follow-up questions and move the conversation along. There are some limitations to its knowledge, but I've been impressed so far.

The only drawback is that it requires you to have an account, but you can also login with Google or Microsoft.

Picture of the Week

Image credit: NASA
The Orion spacecraft taking a selfie with the Earth and the Moon, during the Artemis I mission.

Quote I'm reflecting on

You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it. From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, ‘Look at that, you son of a bitch.' (Edgar D. Mitchell, NASA Astronaut)

Question for you to ponder

Can you recognize the shared humanity between you and people and groups you disagree with?

Thank you for reading. Have a great week!

Until next time,
To respond to this email, just hit reply. I'd love to hear from you.

If you think someone you know might enjoy this newsletter, please share it. If someone else forwarded this to you, you can subscribe here.
Email Marketing Powered by MailPoet