1 min readThe Overview Effect

What are the conditions that brings about the overview effect? How can the overview effect impact the way we see ourselves, and our role in this universe?

The term “overview effect “ was coined by Frank White to refer to the “truly transformative experiences involving senses of wonder and awe, unity with nature, transcendence, and universal brotherhood”, which are common experiences among astronauts who see the earth from the distance. This 1996 article written by Martin Redfern traces stories of various astronauts of how they discovered a deep love and respect for our planet. 

Implications for AI

Humanity, like the earth, lies in an ocean of dark mystery. Our current sciences are nowhere near understanding human nature, consciousness, and the societies we create. Mainstream science wants to limit human nature to the atoms and molecules that make up our physical bodies. But we know that beyond our physicality, lies a much bigger universe. When we begin to understand the vastness and meaningfulness of humanity, we will begin to see our true nature, and our existence in this planet, as sacred. 

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