Look to space to gain some perspective

It seems, these days, like every day there is a new report of violence. Whether violence to our environment, or violence to one another, these are not peaceful times in which we are living. There is much need for people to step in and do their part — as activists, innovators, and spiritual leaders — in order to help change the course. We write stories every day about sisters following their callings to do this kind of work.

Standing up and fighting is necessary. Equally necessary is sitting down and contemplating. Contemplating the fact of our existence in this life, and coming back to a place of love, even in the most difficult times. That's why, for this week's #3Stats, I wanted to share something seemingly lighthearted that is actually profound: British Astronaut Tim Peake's images of Earth taken from the International Space Station over the past six months.

Click through the interactive map, built by the mapping software firm Esri UK, to see photographs Peake took of our beautiful planet. From steamy volcanoes, to windy roads through big cities, to the Northern Lights, his images are simply breathtaking.

While looking through the images Peake took and reading the lighthearted captions he wrote to accompany them, it's impossible not to smile. But his work does something else, too, something even more powerful. It gives us a sense of ownership over the whole planet, making all of it feel like our home, which of course it is. Peake's image humbles us, while at the same time increasing our awe. They simultaneously shrink us and expand us, and in that way they are holy.

[Georgia Perry is a freelance writer based in Oakland, California. She's contributed to several print and online magazines including, The Atlantic, CityLab, Portland Monthly Magazine and the Portland Mercury. She was formerly a staff writer at the Santa Cruz Weekly in California. Follow her on Twitter @georguhperry.]