You are not an encapsulated bag of skin dragging around a dreary little ego. You are an evolutionary wonder, a trillion cells singing together in a vast chorale, an organism – environment, a symbiosis of cell and soul.

The atoms come into my brain, dance a dance, and then go out — there are always new atoms, but always doing the same dance, remembering what the dance was yesterday.

Quote in context:

“For instance, the scientific article may say, “The radioactive phosphorus content of the cerebrum of the rat decreases to one-half in a period of two weeks.” Now what does that mean? It means that the phosphorus that is in the brain of a rat — and also in mine, and yours — is not the same phosphorus as it was two weeks ago. It means the atoms that are in the brain are being replaced: the ones that were there before have gone away. So what is this mind of ours: what are these atoms with consciousness? Last week’s potatoes! They now can remember what was going on in my mind a year ago — a mind which has long ago been replaced. To note that the thing I call my individuality is only a pattern or dance, that is what it means when one discovers how long it takes for the atoms of the brain to be replaced by other atoms. The atoms come into my brain, dance a dance, and then go out — there are always new atoms, but always doing the same dance, remembering what the dance was yesterday.”

Richard Feynman, “The Value of Science” (speech at NAS meeting, 1955)
reprinted in The Pleasure of Finding Things Out: The Best Short
Works of Richard P. Feynman
 (Jeffrey Robbins, ed., 1999)

For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.

Quote in context: 

I CELEBRATE myself, and sing myself,

And what I assume you shall assume,

For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.”

— Walt Whitman, “Song of Myself,”  Leaves of Grass (1891)

http://whitmanarchive.org/published/LG/1891/poems/27

Did you know that the phrase “and sing myself” didn’t appear in the 1855 version?

I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process – an integral function of the universe.

Quote in context:

“I live on Earth at present, and I don’t know what I am. I know that I am not a category. I am not a thing — a noun. I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process – an integral function of the universe.

Buckminster Fuller, I Seem to Be a Verb (1970)

http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Buckminster_Fuller

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buckminster_Fuller

http://www.smbc-comics.com/?id=2833

I think *you’re* one of the good wobbles.

In the end, we are self-perceiving, self-inventing, locked-in mirages that are little miracles of self-reference.

an infinite multitude of things doing an infinite multitude of actions in infinite time and space; and yet they are not many things, but one thing

Quote in context:

“We can no longer separate things as we once could: everything tends towards unity; one thing, one action, in one place, at one time. On the other hand, we can no longer unify things as we once could; we are driven to ultimate atoms, each one of which is an individuality. 

So that we have an infinite multitude of things doing an infinite multitude of actions in infinite time and space; and yet they are not many things, but one thing.” 

—Samuel Butler, The Note-Books of Samuel Butler (1912), Part IV: Mind and Matter

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Butler_(novelist)

http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Samuel_Butler_(novelist)

 

You are the big bang, the original force of the universe, coming on as whoever you are.

It’s like you took a bottle of ink and you threw it at a wall. Smash! And all that ink spread. And in the middle, it’s dense, isn’t it? And as it gets out on the edge, the little droplets get finer and finer and make more complicated patterns, see? 

[…] If you think that you are only inside your skin, you define yourself as one very complicated little curlique, way out on the edge of that explosion. Way out in space, and way out in time.

Billions of years ago, you were a big bang, but now you’re a complicated human being. And then we cut ourselves off, and don’t feel that we’re still the big bang. But you are. […] You are still the process.    

You are the big bang, the original force of the universe, coming on as whoever you are.”

– Alan Watts, The Nature of Consciousness

http://deoxy.org/w_nature.htm

http://abstrusegoose.com/215

Also available as a mini poster: http://www.cafepress.com/abstrusegoose.422398630

Ignacio Torres, Stellar
“This project began from the theory that humans are made of cosmic matter as a result of a stars death. I created imagery that showcased this cosmic birth through the use of dust and reflective confetti to create galaxies. The models organic bodily expressions as they are frozen in time between the particles suggest their celestial creation. In addition, space and time is heightened by the use of three-dimensional animated gifs. Their movement serves as a visual metaphor to the spatial link we share with stars as well as their separateness through time.”
http://ignacio-torres.com/projects/stellar/

We are a way for the cosmos to know itself.

Quote in context: “Some part of our being knows this is where we came from. We long to return. And we can. Because the cosmos is also within us. We’re made of star-stuff. We are a way for the cosmos to know itself.”

—Carl Sagan, Cosmos: A Personal Voyage. Ep. 1: “The Shores of the Cosmic Ocean.” 

Quote autotuned: “A Glorious Dawn” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zSgiXGELjbc (Symphony of Science)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Sagan

http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Carl_Sagan