Carl Edward Sagan (; SAY-gən; November 9, 1934 – December 20, 1996) was an American astronomer, planetary scientist, cosmologist, astrophysicist, astrobiologist, science communicator, author, and professor. His best known scientific contribution is his research on the possibility of extraterrestrial life, including experimental demonstration of the production of amino acids from...
The entire recent history of biology shows that we are, to a remarkable degree, the results of the interactions of an extremely complex array of molecules; and the aspect of biology that was once considered its holy of holies, the nature of the genetic material, has now been fundamentally understood in terms of the chemistry of its constituent nucleic acids, DNA and RNA, and their operational agents, the proteins.
—Carl Sagan in The Dragons of Eden
For small creatures such as we the vastness is bearable only through love.
Humans — who enslave, castrate, experiment on, and fillet other animals — have had an understandable penchant for pretending animals do not feel pain. A sharp distinction between humans and "animals" is essential if we are to bend them to our will, wear them, eat them — without any disquieting tinges of guilt or regret.
Where we have strong emotions, we're liable to fool ourselves.
A physicist is an atom's way of knowing about atoms.