Jun 22, 2023

The Overview Effect: It will transform how you think forever

Posted by in categories: habitats, space

On this day 52 years ago, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the Moon. Here’s what they said about “The Overview Effect” and how it transforms the way you think forever.

Have you heard of the overview effect? It’s an interesting phenomenon that, for the time being, is exclusively reserved for astronauts. It refers to the overwhelming feeling astronauts get when witnessing for the first time the Earth from space.

It was first experienced by Yuri Gagarin in April 1961 when he became the first human to orbit the Earth. The event led him to marvel at Earth’s beauty, saying, “People of the world, let us safeguard and enhance this beauty, and not destroy it.”

Eight years later, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins, all astronauts walking on the Moon, also reported feeling a profound and stunning sense of clarity when first witnessing the Earth from so far.

Michael Collins described his experience, saying “The thing that really surprised me was that it [Earth] projected an air of fragility. And why, I don’t know to this day. I had a feeling it’s tiny, it’s shiny, it’s beautiful, it’s home, and it’s fragile.”

You can imagine that this overview effect is important because it results in a tremendous desire to protect the Earth. But that’s not the only reason. In our video, we explain why the overview effect is so important and how the term was first coined.

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