top of page

About the Overview effect

What could it mean for you ... and for humanity ?

It was a beautiful, harmonious, peaceful-looking planet, blue with white clouds, and one that gave you a deep sense of home, of being, of identity. It is what I prefer to call instant global consciousness.

~ Astronaut Edgar Mitchell


'The Overview Effect' is a term coined by space philosopher and author Frank White to describe the profound cognitive shift in awareness and worldview generated by the intensely rich perceptual experience of actually seeing the Earth from space.  


Frank White’s definition of the overview effect is found in his landmark book, The Overview Effect: Space Exploration and Human Evolution (1987/1998/2014). 


Shifting Human Paradigms
Catalyzing The Obvious new Story for Humanity

The Overview Effect is a cognitive shift in awareness reported by some astronauts and cosmonauts during spaceflight ... It refers to the experience of seeing firsthand the reality that the Earth is in space, a tiny, fragile ball of life, ‘hanging in the void,’ shielded and nourished by a paper-thin atmosphere. The experience often transforms astronauts’ perspective on the planet and humanity’s place in the universe. Some common aspects of it are feeling of awe for the planet, a profound understanding of the interconnection of all life, and a renewed sense of responsibility for taking care of the environment.”

EARTH Jimmy Pic.png
Screen Shot 2020-04-19 at 10.32.20
Richard Henry Whitehurst
O.I.A. Founder & Core Trainer

"My conviction is that THE OVERVIEW EFFECT can compel and propel humanity into a much-needed 'New Operating Story'. It is a planetary story for all of us.

It doesn’t require billions of years, nor any creative deity, nor any big-banging about, nor even a poetically worded narrative. Rather, it’s an unspoken ‘story’ infused with ‘right-now’. It is succinct, ineffable, and beyond beliefs. It transcends the limitations of any spoken language. No translations are required. In Her gentle and loving caress, planet Earth reaches out through Her mind-boggling reality and beauty to moisten our hearts and wake us up from the destructive stupor of separation."  - RHW

There are 7 videos posted on this webpage.
These can give you an introduction to the cognitive and visceral dimensions of the OVERVIEW EFFECT.
Video:  A Powerful Direct Transmission from Astronaut Nick Hague
VIDEO ~ The Hugely Popular Vimeo  Documentary:  'OVERVIEW'

The Overview Effect reframes cultural conditioning. Seeing the Earth from space delivers the awestruck observer into a powerfully felt planetary awareness. This establishes in the mind of the viewer direct contact with broader and deeper truths of existing as a human presence on this planet. It almost always brings about changes in how one views environmental, political and social issues. This life-affirming shift is succinctly summarized by Cosmonaut Boris Volynov:

During a space flight, the psyche of each astronaut is reshaped. Having seen the sun, the stars, and our planet, you become more full of life, softer. You begin to look at all living things with greater trepidation and you begin to be more kind and patient with the people around you. At any rate that is what happened to me.” (2)

"The mass experience of The Overview Effect of space travel, seeing the reality of the Earth in space, will eventually be seen as a major driver of one of the greatest shifts in world awareness in the Modern World, equivalent or greater than the Copernican Revolution or the discovery of the New World. Whether by direct experience or sophisticated simulation and artistic representation, this experience will forever alter the life we think we are living and the world we think we are in.” 


- David Beaver - Cognitive researcher and

Co-founder of The Overview Institute (USA) 

David Beaver.jpg

VIDEO ~ James May of Top Gear fame experiences elements of The Overview Effect at the fringe of the Earth’s atmosphere.

"We were in orbit ... and I looked out the window and saw Earth from space for the first time, and it took my breath away, literally ... it was breath-taking.

I couldn't breathe for 30 seconds."



Astronaut Edward M. Finke
Direct Transmission from NASA astronaut Anne McClain
VIDEO ~ MIT alumni Astronauts describe their Overview experiences
video:  The Power of Seeing Planet Earth from Space - hearing from NASA astronaut Karen Nyberg

"The most exciting and beneficial things I believe happened to humanity in the past century were physicists’ recognition that “the universe is more like a great thought than like a great machine” and astronauts lifting far enough from Earth to see, feel and show us how very much alive our planet is."
Elisabet Sahtouris PhD - Biologist & Futurist

Video:  A Moving Earth-Day Direct Transmission from Astronaut Jean-Francois Clervoy
Earth ~ Florida Curved.jpg
bottom of page