What the 3rd Star Wars trilogy was supposed to be about

Spoiler: Microbiomes in space!

Image source: Disney
  • A recent interview reveals the visionary inspiration behind Star Wars.
  • The story was originally an excerpt from the Journal of the Whills.
  • The Whills were the force behind the Force.
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Genius Series: The most influential scientist of all time

Big Think has launched a line of apparel and goods that celebrate the life and work of four geniuses.

  • Big Think has just launched its Genius Series of tees, sweatshirts, posters and more! Buy here.
  • Our third genius is Sir Isaac Newton. His contributions to science are nearly impossible to overstate.
  • Select Rush or Super Rush Delivery to get your order before Christmas Day!
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Ghost Stories of Christmas: A chilling Victorian tradition

Here's why scary stories were once an integral part of Christmas Eve festivities.

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  • Gathering around a fire to share ghost stories was a beloved Christmas tradition in the late 1800s into the early 1900s.
  • Victorians also sent bizarre Christmas cards with morbidly humorous designs featuring murderous frogs and anthropomorphic insects.
  • Historically, December 25th has a close link to pre-Christian solstice festivals that viewed mid-winter as a time when light dies and the veil between the world of the living and dead is most thin.
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Neil deGrasse Tyson: Scientists’ brains are wired to see differently

Scientists are expert observers. Because of this, they can help us develop a keener view of the world — the cosmos.

  • There are many people who have discomfort engaging with a scientific perspective of the world — for some, for instance, it conflicts with what they were taught during their religious upbringings.
  • We can all gain a greater view of life — the cosmos — by getting to know scientists, especially when we're at an impasse in our lives.
  • Scientists' view of the world retains a "distance" to it — it's observational, fact-driven. This helps with finding consistent principles in nature.
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10 quotes that prove humanity is absurd

We live in contradiction. How we confront that fact matters.

  • Absurdism is the philosophical school that recognizes the tension between meaning and a meaningless universe.
  • Camus and Kierkegaard wrote extensively on the topic, though modern thinkers continue to contribute to the literature of the Absurd.
  • In a politically divided time, the Absurd has come to the forefront of national discussion.
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