Monday, July 20, 2009

Man on the Moon: 40th Anniversary

40 years ago today, the Americans put a man on the moon.

Due to endless rivalry between the USA and the then USSR, and possibly to divert national and international attention from America's disastrous foreign policy, enormous amounts of money were ploughed into what was called the 'space race' to land men on the moon.

The entire operation was guided and operated by NASA's huge computers back home on earth. However, today's average mobile phone has far more capacity than all those early computers put together.

Since 1969, no one has bothered to land on the moon and the space race is largely considered to have been a cosmic exercise in political 'spin' in which, of course, the USA portrayed their superior might over all other nations... more weapons of mass distraction.

Unfortunately, the mission and its publicity did not contribute in any large way to improving the lot of humanity or even Americans.

But one thing of tremendous significance was achieved ...

The astronauts saw our natural home, planet earth, in its entirety for the first time. Our little blue world, with all its land masses and oceans, was viewed through the portholes of their rocket capsule as a small, fragile refuge floating through space.

The astronauts themselves and many people who recall seeing the first colour pictures of the earth report how moving and transformative the experience was. A fundamental shift was beginning to occur in the consciousness of human beings.

We began to see not only how majestic and fragile our planet is, but how borders, skin-colour, money - any differences whatsoever - disappear utterly the broader your view becomes.

No comments:

Post a Comment