Carl once said, "We are a way for the Cosmos to know itself." How beautiful and profound. Our very existence is so incredible and yet, here we are, the living, breathing personification of a vast and mysterious universe.
It's the vastness of space and time that Carl spoke of in the most eloquent of terms. How does one deal with the knowledge that we're but a small and insignificant collection of beings on a little, inconsequential rock?
This - the ability to think scientifically and logically and reasonably, and at the same time have such emotion and humility with his words - is what makes Carl Sagan such an important figure in the history of humankind.
Carl was an avid proponent for lifelong learning, for skepticism, for keeping an open mind, but, as he said, "not so open your brains fall out." He understood and tried to explain that great truths will be uncomfortable to accept, but that doesn't make them any less true.
“The truth may be puzzling. It may take some work to grapple with. It may be counter-intuitive It may contradict deeply held prejudices. It may not be consonant with what we desperately want to be true. But our preferences do not determine what's true."
Such a way with words, that Carl Sagan.
Netflix has the entirety of Carl Sagan's television series, Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, available for streaming. It's a little cheesy in parts, but the science and historical information are just fascinating.