Remember that time when you first realized that the Universe was an incredibly gigantic place, when you felt humbled and fortunate at the mere thought of existing in this vast cosmic arena? Listen to Professor Tom Burns, of Ohio Wesleyan University and Director of Perkins Observatory. He still feels that way.
Sir Chris Bonington's is one of the best British mountaineers of all times. And, at his 80 years old, he still climbs mountains. Perhaps lacking some of the strength he had years ago, but with such determination that he makes me feel old—and I'm almost half his age.
I have seen countless science fiction movies and documentaries about the future of humanity. None of them were as inspiring, beautiful, and realistic as this extraordinary short film by Erik Wernquist, narrated by Carl Sagan. Watch it and get ready for goosebumps.
Ronnie Goodman is not your usual runner. He trains hard every day on the streets of San Francisco for a couple of reasons. One is to raise funds for a charity called The Hospitality House, and the other, well, I will let you guys watch it to figure it out. But it's truly unexpected and a beautiful story.
The last two minutes of Cosmos' eleventh episode are perhaps the most inspiring in the entire series—or at least the most uplifting. The sequence gives us a glimpse of humanity in the next few thousands years—the first few minutes of the next Cosmic Calendar year*—in the most optimistic way imaginable.
The Pale Blue Dot—a book that should be mandatory for every single student in the world—is a vision of the cosmos that will inspire you to be a better human being. It's full of memorable passages but this is the best—the one that gives its title to the book.
Meet Sepideh Hooshyar, a provincial Iranian teenage girl who dreams of becoming an astronaut. As a young woman in a conservative Muslim culture that disapproves of such pursuits, Sepideh spends her days studying astronomy and her nights watching the stars. This documentary chronicles her quest to dream big.
97-year-old Hal Lasko uses an old crappy PC with Windows 95 and the crude Microsoft Paint to create his art. The outstanding World War II veteran and retired draftsman's work demonstrates that, if you have talent, the tools don't matter at all.
I dare say I've actually been inspired by Lego blocks this morning, and, quite possibly, these classic scenes from human history could make self-described fanatic Jesus Diaz weep—just a little. There's Jeff Widener's 1989 photograph of "The unknown rebel" at Tiananmen square; and Joe Rosenthal's 1945 photograph…