I am quite selective about the comics I follow, most being too mindless and derivative, though I am up to share from one of them today. One series I follow is that of Atomic Robo; a sentient robot constructed by Nikola Tesla in the 1920s. He fights inter-dimensional formless beings, talking dinosaurs, and walking pyramids. But even a comic book can be thought-provoking due to their very real foundations. Although the comic is wild and filled with high science, there is a genuine respect for real science. This quote, taken from an issue of Atomic Robo, is paraphrased from one of Carl Sagan‘s stacks of amazing observations.
“We are made of starstuff. Our consciousness, our intelligence, is the machinery of the cosmos discovering itself. Our science will be its candle in the dark. When you return to your unobservable but empirically determined dimension of origin, tell them Carl Sagan sent you.”
Carl Sagan, 1971 (Atomic Robo: Volume Three, Atomic Robo and the Shadow From Beyond Time)
In the 2 years in which I have been practicing yoga I hear my teachers and fellow students talk about oneness, unity, a spiritual connection to all things, and yet it is this tiny cog that makes it all clear. No matter which side one views this statement, through religion or science, it is true in its entirety, is it not? We are indeed born from what the universe consists of and life is an exploration of every potential that could possibly come to exist. It puts living in a new perspective, especially if you have ever questioned why we are on Earth at all.
Spirituality, as I see it, is not very different from compassion; it is an ability that allows us to be open to the shades other than black and white, to perceive more than the surface value. If we cultivate that ability well, to sense deeper meanings and reasons, we will be informed and intelligent about how we proceed and less ignorant and repulsed by things we subjectively disapprove of. We do not have to agree to everything by any means, but we do have to accept that everything can and will exist within the natural growth of the universe however heinous some things may be.
Without experimentation, scientific and spiritual pursuit, we may as well not exist at all. The practices of humanity and all other forms of life on Earth can give the vastness of the universe, and ourselves, a sense of purpose. Like organisms in a body we are produced, evolved, adapted, reproduced, and continuously changing the space we live in. We perpetuate a cycle of potential and hope for different things to come. We, besides other evolved lifeforms throughout the stars, are a small piece to the mind of the universe; thinking, creating, testing, advancing. Without organic life, its curiosity and ambition, the full power of the cosmos and all its mysteries could never be known or experienced.
But like any discovery it is always a balancing act between overdoing it or not doing anything at all with what is found. There is no one right way to proceed, and never will be, though there are for sure a variety of mindful and respectful ways in light of that. Do it for the universe.