Book Review: Cosmos by Carl Sagan

Every one of us is, in the cosmic perspective, precious. If a human disagrees with you, let him live. In a hundred billion galaxies, you will not find another.

Carl Sagan

Carl Sagan’s Cosmos examines the origins of the universe and its connection to humans. Although the title of this book makes one believe that it is strictly related to heavenly elements, Sagan also shares his thoughts on various aspects like human nature, philosophy, biology and history. In each of these subjects, Sagan busts cultural myths and traces their links back to the universe.

Review:

I still can’t believe this book is written in the year 1980 as the ideas discussed are relevant even today. Sagan’s genius is seen in the way he lays his thoughts with simplicity sans the hardcore science jargon. It is a feat not easy to accomplish especially when you are an expert in that subject.

Not limiting just to the astronomical field, I liked how Sagan touches upon various other topics. He doesn’t go without crediting the efforts of experts who fought against tide to unravel mysteries of the world. It is to them we must forever be grateful. Through his words, Sagan makes one pause and marvel at circumstances that led to the creation of the first organism on earth. He entertains the possibility of extraterrestrial presence that is more technologically advanced than mankind. Few of my favourite parts were his thoughts on the theory of natural selection, life on Martian environment, the intelligence of fellow creatures and stories about the ancient library of Alexandria (which no longer exists). 

He explains this like bedtime stories than convoluted scientific theories. Like a true explorer, he motivates the readers to be curious, to read and open their mind to modern understandings. Sagan’s beliefs are that of the man whose wiseness humbles you.

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