We want to explore. We’re curious people. Look back over history, people have put their lives at stake to go out and explore … We believe in what we’re doing. Now it’s time to go. Curious that we spend more time congratulating people who have succeeded than encouraging people who have not. When I orbited the Earth in a spaceship, I saw for the first time how beautiful our planet is. Mankind, let us preserve and increase this beauty, and not destroy it!
NASA is not about the ‘Adventure of Human Space Exploration’…We won’t be doing it just to get out there in space – we’ll be doing it because the things we learn out there will be making life better for a lot of people who won’t be able to go.
As we got further and further away, it [the Earth] diminished in size. Finally it shrank to the size of a marble, the most beautiful you can imagine. That beautiful, warm, living object looked so fragile, so delicate, that if you touched it with a finger it would crumble and fall apart. Seeing this has to change a man.
You know, being a test pilot isn’t always the healthiest business in the world. Astronomy compels the soul to look upward, and leads us from this world to another. Science has not yet mastered prophecy. We predict too much for the next year and yet far too little for the next 10. For those who have seen the Earth from space, and for the hundreds and perhaps thousands more who will, the experience most certainly changes your perspective. The things that we share in our world are far more valuable than those which divide us.
Problems look mighty small from 150 miles up. To go places and do things that have never been done before – that’s what living is all about. The Earth was small, light blue, and so touchingly alone, our home that must be defended like a holy relic. The Earth was absolutely round. I believe I never knew what the word round meant until I saw Earth from space.