"Earthrise", captured by Apollo 8 on Dec. 24, 1968.
“Earthrise”, captured by Apollo 8 on Dec. 24, 1968.

Watching Japanese science documentary TV program “The Miracle Planet” in fifth grade, I was shocked at environmental issues such as ozone hole and acid rain. These issues are difficult to notice in my daily life and can be spotted on a planetary scale. This is my very first Earth-overview experience.

In the “flat” world of globalism where everything goes crossborder, things are tremendously rewinding today. Syrian situation has been disorderly, Brexit poll resulted in UK leaving EU, US presidential election gave a rise to Trump Administration, and the world is heading toward stronger protectionism. It is therefore even more important to view things on an earth scale.

How can we do this? My thought is that the clue lies in astronauts’ experience.

Journalist Takashi Tachibana revealed in his book “Return from Space” that Apollo astronauts with off-the-Earth-orbit exploration underwent internal, psychological change.

Astronaut Soichi Noguchi comments in his research, “every astronaut admits that overviewing the Earth that dynamically changes provides psychological peace. Watching the Earth makes us realize not only the scenic beauty but also the sense of security.

I overview the Earth everyday as my hobby. Watching the Earth is fun, beautiful, and sometimes sad to know the gap between its scenic awe and horrible events taking place on the ground. I launched this LiVEARTH VIEW web site to share these views with everyone in the world.

By overviewing the Earth, I hope more people gain the meta-cognitive perspective, resulting in decreased intolerance and extremism in the world.

Sanefumi Sammy Shoji

 

* Soichi Noguchi, Tomio Kinoshita, A study on how a microgravity environment affects spatial orientation, the cognitive system, and interpersonal relationships, Japanese Journal of Social Psychology, Vol.30, No.1, pp.1-10, 2014.

* Vakoch, D. A. (Ed.) (2011). Psychology of space exploration, contemporary research in historical perspective. National Aeronautics and Space Administration. pp. 85–86.