• SumoMe

MeteorSometimes we, as a species, get excessively caught up in our lives. The small things–flat tires, bad grades, work–are often over-exaggerated to a point of hilarity. Sometimes, we need a gut check to remind us of the larger picture. Today, we were brought one in the form of a Russian meteor.

Stargazing, at least on occasion, is an important and humbling practice. It reminds us how small we are in comparison to the vast unknown of the universe. However, sometimes we don’t have to gaze very far to understand this concept because it will quite literally hit us like a ton of bricks. Today was one of those times for me.

As I watched that massive meteor hit Russia, it reminded me how vulnerable we are as a species and planet. That one small (in comparison) rock wrecked an enormous amount of havoc as it traveled 33,000 MPH into our terrain, damaging 1 million square feet in a massive shock wave. While this is a tragic event, it’s absolutely fascinating, humbling, and endlessly bewildering. On days like this, I like to turn to Carl Sagan and perhaps a more modern jazzy creation by the extremely talented Jenova 7 (embedded right). In particular:

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood, spilled by all those generals and emperors, so that in glory and triumph they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot… In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. Like it or not, for the moment, the Earth is where we make our stand.

If you haven’t also seen some of the raw footage from today, it’s worth browsing around and taking a look. Seeing the sky light up like that in a flash is beyond words.

What do you think of the Russian meteor? Did it have the same effect on you? Talk about it in the comments below.