Carl Sagan

Carl Sagan

American astronomer, cosmologist, astrophysicist and author

Lived from: 1934-1996

Category: Writers (Contemporary)

Quotes: Carl Sagan

Quotes 91 till 105 of 141.

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    The idea that God is an oversized white male with a flowing beard who sits in the sky and tallies the fall of every sparrow is ludicrous. But if by 'God' one means the set of physical laws that govern the universe, then clearly there is such a God. This God is emotionally unsatisfying... it does not make much sense to pray to the law of gravity.
  • Carl Sagan
    Carl Sagan
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    The illegality of cannabis is outrageous, an impediment to full utilization of a drug which helps produce the serenity and insight, sensitivity and fellowship so desperately needed in this increasingly mad and dangerous world.
    Source: Essay as Mr. X (1969)
  • Carl Sagan
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    The library connects us with the insight and knowledge, painfully extracted from Nature, of the greatest minds that ever were, with the best teachers, drawn from the entire planet and from all our history, to instruct us without tiring, and to inspire us to make our own contribution to the collective knowledge of the human species. I think the health of our civilization, the depth of our awareness about the underpinnings of our culture and our concern for the future can all be tested by how well
  • Carl Sagan
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    The neurochemistry of the brain is astonishingly busy, the circuitry of a machine more wonderful than any devised by humans. But there is no evidence that its functioning is due to anything more than the 1014 neural connections that build an elegant architecture of consciousness.
    Source: Cosmos (1980)
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    The notion that science and spirituality are somehow mutually exclusive does a disservice to both.
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    The Platonists and their Christian successors held the peculiar notion that the Earth was tainted and somehow nasty, while the heavens were perfect and divine. The fundamental idea that the Earth is a planet, that we are citizens of the Universe, was rejected and forgotten.
    Source: Cosmos (1980)
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    The sacred truth of science is that there are no sacred truths.
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    The suppression of uncomfortable ideas may be common in religion and politics, but it is not the path to knowledge; it has no place in the endeavor of science.
    Source: Cosmos (1980)
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    The surface of the earth is the shore of the cosmic ocean.... Recently, we've managed to wade a little way out, maybe ankle-deep, and the water seems inviting.
    Source: Cosmos: A Personal Voyage (1990) 03 min 55 sec
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    The total number of stars in the Universe is larger than all the grains of sand on all the beaches of the planet Earth.
    Source: Cosmos (1980) 221
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    The uniqueness of humans has been claimed on many grounds, but most often because of our tool-making, culture, language, reason and morality. We have them, the other animals don't, and - so the argument goes - that's that.
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    The universe is a pretty big place. If it's just us, seems like an awful waste of space.
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    Carl Sagan
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    The universe seems neither benign nor hostile, merely indifferent to the concerns of such puny creatures as we are.
    Source: Cosmos (1980)
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    Carl Sagan
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    The vast distances that separate the stars are providential. Beings and worlds are quarantined from one another. The quarantine is lifted only for those with sufficient self-knowledge and judgement to have safely traveled from star to star.
    Source: Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space (1994)
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    The well-meaning contention that all ideas have equal merit seems to me little different from the disastrous contention that no ideas have any merit.