ASTRONAUT Edgar Mitchell’s epiphany struck when he looked out the window of his spacecraft at the Earth, Moon, and Sun, surrounded by an infinitely vast universe.
Suddenly it came to him that the molecules and cells of our bodies “must have had their origin in those faraway stars.”
It was at that moment an overwhelming realization of the interconnectedness of all life dawned on him.
It was a life-altering flash of insight — not an “intellectual knowledge,” he said, but a “visceral knowing:”
It was accompanied by a very blissful feeling that I had never experienced before.
This feeling is sometimes called the ‘overview effect.’ “The overview effect is a cognitive shift in awareness reported by some astronauts during spaceflight, often while viewing the Earth from outer space. It is the experience of seeing firsthand the reality of the Earth in space, which is immediately understood to be a tiny, fragile ball of life, ‘hanging in the void’, shielded and nourished by a paper-thin atmosphere.”
This is doubtless the ideal evoked by the original First Object of the Theosophical Movement: (Objects of the Theosophical Society)
To form a nucleus of the Universal Brotherhood of Humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste or colour.
Indeed: “From space, national boundaries vanish, the conflicts that divide people become less important, and the need to create a planetary society with the united will to protect this ‘pale blue dot’ becomes both obvious and imperative.” (Wikipedia)
Dr. Mitchell describes being completely engulfed by a profound sense of universal connectedness, in the below video excerpt from Renée Scheltema’s visionary film, Something Unknown is Doing We Don’t Know What.
Having had the life-changing experience of the Overview Effect, the former astronaut, along with parapsychologist Charles Tart, attempt to interpret the non-linear feelings and insights for the rest of us.