"Nous ne sommes qu'une espèce particulièrement développée de primates sur une planète mineure en orbite autour d'une étoile de taille très moyenne dans les confins d'une galaxie qui se trouve parmi cent milliards d'autres galaxies. Pourtant depuis les débuts de la civilisation, les gens cherchent désespérément à comprendre le sens caché de ce monde. Il doit y avoir quelque chose de très particulier concernant les conditions aux limites de l'univers et quoi de plus particulier que l'absence de limites. De même, il ne devrait pas y avoir de limites aux vérités humaines. Nous sommes tous différents, certes la vie n'est pas toujours belle mais il n'est rien qu'on ne puisse accomplir avec succès. Tant qu'il y a de la vie il y a de l'espoir."
Dernier échange radio: "And Columbia, Houston, we see your tire pressure messages and we did not copy your last." (A vous Columbia, ici Houston. Nous avons reçu vos derniers messages sur la pression des pneus. Nous n'avons pas capté le dernier (message)... ". Columbia : "Roger, ah, ba (unintelligable)" (Bien reçu, mm..." non intelligible)
"Look again at this little point. It's here. This is our home. It's us. On him are all those whom you love, all whom you know, all whom you have heard of, all the human beings who have ever lived. All the sum of our joys and our sufferings, thousands of faiths with assured convictions, ideologies and economic doctrines, all the hunters and gatherers, all the heroes and all the cowards, all the creators and destroyers of civilizations, all kings and all the peasants, all the young couples of lovers, all the fathers and mothers, all the hopeful children, the inventors and the explorers, all the teachers of morality, all the corrupt politicians, all the superstars "All the" supreme guides ", all the saints and sinners of the history of our species lived here, on this grain of dust suspended in a ray of sunshine. Earth is a tiny scene in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood poured out by all these generals and emperors so that, shrouded in triumph and glory, they may become the temporary masters of a fraction of a point. Think of the endless cruelty imposed by the inhabitants of a corner of this pixel on indistinct inhabitants of another corner. As they struggle to get along, as they are quick to kill each other, as their hatreds are fervent. Our postures, our own imagined importance, the illusion that we have some privileged position in the universe, are questioned by this pale point of light. Our planet is a tiny lonely spot enveloped by the great cosmic night. In our darkness - in all this immensity - there is no sign that help will come to save us from ourselves. The Earth is until now the only known world to shelter life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, where our species could migrate. To visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Whether you like it or not, for the moment it is on Earth that we take position. It has been said that astronomy encourages humility and strengthens character. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the madness of human ideas than this distant image of our tiny world. For me, this underscores our responsibility to cohabit more fraternally with each other, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only house we have ever known
A Grand Oasis Christmas Eve morning, the Apollo 8 Command Module was entering its fourth orbit of the moon. As Flight Commander Borman executed a routine roll, Anders looked out his window and exclaimed, “Oh, my God.” Hanging in the blackness of space like a bright blue ball was Earth, rising in the sky above the lunar landscape. Anders' entire statement at that moment was one to which any vacationer can relate: “Oh, my God, look at that picture over there! There's the Earth comin' up. Wow, is that pretty!” “Hey, don't take that. It's not scheduled,” Borman joked. In all of the preparations for carefully studying and photographing the moon, no one had thought about turning the camera back toward home, 240,000 miles away. When the Earthrise came into view, the crew's Hasselblad 500 EL camera was fitted with a Zeiss Sonnar 250mm telephoto lens and loaded with a Kodak 70mm black-and-white film magazine. As Anders—or was it Borman?—shot the first couple of frames, Lovell rummaged through a storage locker to find a color film magazine. The spacecraft continued rolling, and Earth disappeared from the astronauts' view. “Well, I think we missed it,” Anders said. Then it reappeared in the window. With color film now loaded, Anders lined up the shot. Recognizing the enormity of the moment, Lovell excitedly played back-seat photographer. “You got it?” “Yep,” Anders said. “Take several. Take several of 'em. Here, give it to me.” “Wait a minute. Just let me get the right setting here now. Just calm down. Calm down, Lovell.” “Well, I got it right—aw, that's a beautiful shot. Two fifty at f/11.” “Now vary—vary the exposure a little bit.” “I did. I took two of 'em here.” “You sure you got it now?” Oh, did he have it. Once the film was safely back home and developed, the world realized that Anders' Earthrise shot might be the most stunning photograph ever taken. He'd already shot images of the whole planet during those early moments away from Earth's orbit. And an unmanned probe in lunar orbit had photographed the whole planet in low-resolution black-and-white in 1966. But this one was full color, shot by a human from the vantage point of another world. Lovell later would describe the sight of fragile Earth as “a grand oasis in the vastness of space.” In a New York Times front-page essay, the poet Archibald MacLeish wrote: “To see the earth as it truly is, small and blue and beautiful in that eternal silence where it floats, is to see ourselves as riders on the earth together, brothers on that bright loveliness in the eternal cold—brothers who know now they are truly brothers.” Anders' iconic shot would inspire the first Earth Day in 1970, and decades later would be listed first in Life magazine's “100 Photographs that Changed the World.” In the Beginning That evening, NASA had planned a live Christmas Eve television broadcast. Borman, Lovell, and Anders were to deliver a greeting from lunar orbit. They'd been instructed by NASA only to “say something appropriate.” All three had wrestled with what that should be. They wanted something with spiritual meaning, but nothing they came up with seemed to fit the moment. In Genesis: The Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman describes what happened next. Two weeks before the mission, Borman had called on a friend, Simon Bourgin at the U.S. Information Agency, for help. Bourgin was stymied, too, so he called freelance writer Joe Laitin. Paging through a Gideon Bible for inspiration, Laitin worked late into the night, typing and then crumpling hundreds of sheets of paper. Finally his wife, Christine, suggested he “begin at the beginning.” Laitin turned to the creation story in Genesis 1 and knew he had it. He sent a memo to Bourgin, suggesting Genesis 1:1–10 and adding a brief closing line. Bourgin typed the text into a letter to Borman. The astronauts loved the idea. Borman photocopied the letter and added it to the flight plan. Now, with millions watching from all over Earth, they were on. After short descriptions of what they'd done that day in lunar orbit—incredible enough—they turned to Bourgin's letter. Anders went first: “We are now approaching lunar sunrise, and for all the people back on Earth, the crew of Apollo 8 has a message that we would like to send to you.” In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. Lovell read next: And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day. Borman finished: And God said, Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called the Seas: and God saw that it was good. “And from the crew of Apollo 8,” he concluded, “we close with good night, good luck, a merry Christmas, and God bless all of you, all of you on the good Earth.” Ironically, the space program's most spiritually powerful image was not about where we went, but where we came from. Coming from the only three humans who had ever seen a God's-eye view of the entire Earth, the creation story was never more powerful. Human endeavor intersected with the vastness and beauty of creation, and the only appropriate response was to look not at ourselves, but Godward.
"De voir la terre, comme elle est réellement, petite et bleu et magnifique, flottant dans ce silence éternel, c'est nous voir tels que nous sommes, tous des passagers de cette terre, frères sur cette beauté lumineuse dans le froid éternel, des frères qui savent désormais qu'ils sont vraiment frères."
For the first time in all of time, men have seen the Earth. Seen it not as continents or oceans from the little distance of a hundred miles or two or three, but seen it from the depths of space; seen it whole and round and beautiful and small... To see the Earth as it truly is, small and blue and beautiful in that eternal silence where it floats, is to see ourselves as riders on the Earth together, brothers on that bright loveliness in the eternal cold—brothers who know that they are truly brothers.