Best 790 of Carl Sagan quotes - MyQuotes

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Carl Sagan
By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

It means nothing to be open to a proposition we don't understand.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

At the extremes it is difficult to distinguish pseudoscience from rigid, doctrinaire religion.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

There is perhaps no better a demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

Has there ever been a religion with the prophetic accuracy and reliability of science? . . . No other human institution comes close.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

Frederick Douglas taught that literacy is the path from slavery to freedom. There are many kinds of slavery and many kinds of freedom, but reading is still the path.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

Observation: I can't see a thing. Conclusion: Dinosaurs.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

I believe our future depends powerfully on how well we understand this cosmos in which we float, like a mote of dust in the morning sky.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

This oak tree and me, we're made of the same stuff.

By Anonym 19 Sep

Carl Sagan

We make our purpose.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Carl Sagan

It is very difficult to evolve by altering the deep fabric of life; any change there is likely to be lethal. But fundamental change can be accomplished by the addition of new systems on top of old ones…Thus evolution by addition and the functional preservation of the preexisting structure must occur for one of two reasons-either the old function is required as well as the new one, or there is no way of bypassing the old system that is consistent with survival.

By Anonym 17 Sep

Carl Sagan

MacLean has shown that the R-complex plays an important role in aggressive behavior, territoriality, ritual and the establishment of social hierarchies. Despite occasional welcome exceptions, this seems to me to characterize a great deal of modern human bureaucratic and political behavior.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Carl Sagan

If it takes a little myth and ritual to get us through a night that seems endless, who among us cannot sympathize and understand?

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

My long-time view about Christianity is that it represents an amalgam of two seemingly immiscible parts-the religion of Jesus and the religion of Paul. Thomas Jefferson attempted to excise the Pauline parts of the New Testament. There wasn't much left when he was done, but it was an inspiring document.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

Human beings have a demonstrated talent for self-deception when their emotions are stirred.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

We should be teaching our children the scientific method and the reasons for a Bill of Rights. With it comes a certain decency, humility and community spirit.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

Is it fair to be suspicious of an entire profession because of a few bad apples? There are at least two important differences, it seems to me. First, no one doubts that science actually works, whatever mistaken and fraudulent claim may from time to time be offered. But whether there are any miraculous cures from faith-healing, beyond the body's own ability to cure itself, is very much at issue. Secondly, the expose' of fraud and error in science is made almost exclusively by science. But the exposure of fraud and error in faith-healing is almost never done by other faith-healers.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

What an astonishing thing a book is. It’s a flat object made from a tree with flexible parts on which are imprinted lots of funny dark squiggles. But one glance at it and you’re inside the mind of another person, maybe somebody dead for thousands of years. ... Books break the shackles of time. A book is proof that humans are capable of working magic.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

We've tended in our cosmologies to make things familiar. Despite all our best efforts, we've not been very inventive. In the West, Heaven is placid and fluffy, and Hell is like the inside of a volcano. In many stories, both realms are governed by dominance hierarchies headed by gods or devils. Monotheists talked about the king of kings. In every culture we imagined something like our own political system running the Universe. Few found the similarity suspicious.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

What is called for is an exquisite balance between two conflicting needs: the most skeptical scrutiny of all hypotheses that are served up to us and at the same time a great openness to new ideas. If you are only skeptical, then no new ideas make it through to you. On the other hand, if you are open to the point of gullibility and have not an ounce of skeptical sense in you, then you cannot distinguish useful ideas from the worthless ones.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

It is of interest to note that while some dolphins are reported to have learned English - up to fifty words used in correct context - no human being has been reported to have learned dolphinese.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

Even today the most jaded city dweller can be unexpectedly moved upon encountering a clear night sky studded with thousands of twinkling stars. When it happens to me after all these years it still takes my breath away.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds.

By Anonym 16 Sep

Carl Sagan

For thousands of years humans were oppressed— as some of us still are— by the notion that the universe is a marionette whose strings are pulled by a god or gods, unseen and inscrutable. Then, 2,500 years ago, there was a glorious awakening in Ionia: on Samos and the other nearby Greek colonies that grew up among the islands and inlets of the busy eastern Aegean Sea. Suddenly there were people who believed that everything was made of atoms; that human beings and other animals had sprung from simpler forms; that diseases were not caused by demons or the gods; that the Earth was only a planet going around the Sun. And that the stars were very far away.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

If the constellations had been named in the twentieth century, I suppose we would see bicycles and refrigerators in the sky.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

The beauty of a living thing is not the atoms that go into it, but the way those atoms are put together.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

Books permit us to voyage through time, to tap the wisdom of our ancestors. 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 we support our libraries.

By Anonym 19 Sep

Carl Sagan

This looks very much as if the integration of the day's experience into our memory, the forging of new neural links, is either an easier or a more urgent task. As the night wears on and this function is completed, the more affecting dreams, the more bizarre material, the fears and lusts and other powerful emotions of the dream material emerge.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

Could we possible manage the next phase of human history without first dealing with this penchant for dehumanizing the adversary?

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

A blade of grass is a commonplace on Earth; it would be a miracle on Mars. Our descendants on Mars will know the value of a patch of green. And if a blade of grass is priceless, what is the value of a human being?

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

For myself, I like a universe that, includes much that is unknown and, at the same time, much that is knowable. A universe in which everything is known would be static and dull, as boring as the heaven of some weak-minded theologians. A universe that is unknowable is no fit place for a thinking being. The ideal universe for us is one very much like the universe we inhabit. And I would guess that this is not really much of a coincidence.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

Cutting off fundamental, curiosity-driven science is like eating the seed corn. We may have a little more to eat next winter but what will we plant so we and our children will have enough to get through the winters to come?

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

The open road still softly calls.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

We seem, these days, much more willing to recognize the perils before us than we were even a decade ago. The newly recognized dangers threaten all of us, equally. No one can say how it will turn out down here. But this is also, we may note, the first time that a species has become able to journey to the planets and the stars. Sailors on a becalmed sea, we sense a stirring of the breeze.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

Advertising teaches people not to trust their judgment. Advertising teaches people to be stupid.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

A new consciousness is developing which sees the earth as a single organism and recognizes that an organism at war with itself is doomed. We are one planet. One of the great revelations of the age of space exploration is the image of the earth finite and lonely, somehow vulnerable, bearing the entire human species through the oceans of space and time.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

Our loyalties are to the species and the planet. We speak for Earth.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

Since, in the long run, every planetary society will be endangered by impacts from space, every surviving civilization is obliged to become spacefaring — not because of exploratory or romantic zeal, but for the most practical reason imaginable: staying alive.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

Recent research shows that many children without enough to eat wind up with diminished capacity to understand and learn (“cognitive impairment” ). Children don't have to be starving for this to happen. Even mild undernourishment — the kind most common among poor people in America — can do it.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

What an astonishing thing a book is.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

The very act of understanding is a celebration of joining, merging, even if on a very modest scale, with the magnificence of the Cosmos.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

It's sometimes easier to reject strong evidence than to admit that we've been wrong, this is information about ourselves worth having.

By Anonym 18 Sep

Carl Sagan

Sometimes she would be engaged in a laboratory exercise or a seminar when the instructor would say, "Gentlemen, let's proceed," and sensing Ellie's frown would add, "Sorry, Miss Arroway, but I think of you as one of the boys." The highest compliment they were capable of paying was that in their minds she was not overtly female.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

It is all a matter of time scale. An event that would be unthinkable in a hundred years may be inevitable in a hundred million.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

Science is not perfect. It's often misused; it's only a tool, but it's the best tool we have. Self-correcting , ever changing, applicable to everything: with this tool, we vanquish the impossible.

By Anonym 14 Sep

Carl Sagan

[Kepler] preferred the hard truth to his dearest illusions, and that is the heart of science.

By Anonym 19 Sep

Carl Sagan

There is another connection between infancy and dreams: both are followed by amnesia. When we emerge from either state, we have great difficulty remembering what we have experienced. In both cases, I would suggest, the left hemisphere of the neocortex, which is responsible for analytic recollection, has been functioning ineffectively.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

The impediment to scientific thinking is not, I think, the difficulty of the subject. Complex intellectual feats have been mainstays even of oppressed cultures. Shamans, magicians and theologians are highly skilled in their intricate and arcane arts. No, the impediment is political and hierarchical.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

We go about our daily lives understanding almost nothing of the world.

By Anonym 13 Sep

Carl Sagan

Even through your hardest days, remember we are all made of stardust.

By Anonym 15 Sep

Carl Sagan

Whatever the reason you're on Mars, I'm glad you're there, and I wish I was with you.