A Songwriter and an Astrophysicist See the Universe as a Beach Ball: A Beautiful Riff on Intergalactic Isolation

For decades now, scientists — at SETI and elsewhere — have been sending signals into space for the express purpose of contacting distant civilizations. We have yet to hear anything back.

In this simple, beautiful, Saganesque musing on the vastness of space and time, singer/songwriter Peter Mulvey explores why — with an appreciative nod to his friend Vlad, an astrophysicist. Mulvey’s performance took place at the Kaufman Center in Kansas City, Missouri, this summer, as part of the TEDxKC conference. It isn’t an atheism-related video, per se, but its poetic emphasis on the insignificance of our “pale blue dot,” in the scheme of things, might give pause to theists who believe that Earth is the pinnacle of Creation:

More of Mulvey’s work can be enjoyed here.

About Terry Firma

Terry Firma, though born and Journalism-school-educated in Europe, has lived in the U.S. for the past 20-odd years. Stateside, his feature articles have been published in the New York Times, Reason, Rolling Stone, Playboy, and Wired. Terry is the founder and Main Mischief Maker of Moral Compass, a site that pokes fun at the delusional claim by people of faith that a belief in God equips them with superior moral standards.

  • # zbowman

    Stunningly simple explanation of the sheer, poignant vastness of existence..

  • Art_Vandelay

    “People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint – it’s more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly… timey wimey… stuff.”

    -The Doctor

  • Lance Gritton

    Great post! I have been a fan of Peter for over a decade, go support him, he is a great guy and fantastic musician.


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