Wednesday, August 31, 2016
It seems most people have a sort of visceral reaction to the implications of being on our ‘pale blue dot’ all alone and floating in a vast emptiness on the edge of our galaxy. One classmate mentioned that his reaction, essentially, was that the size of our bodies compared to our planet compared to the universe ultimately has no immediate effect on his life; therefore, he has no plan to make any sort of fuss over the matter. Others expressed that the scale is simply an obstacle to overcome on our way to new frontiers, and another selection of students voiced that if contact were to happen in the tiny blips we call our lifetimes, a foreign life form will need to be the ones to make the call. Our minuscule rock has many facets, and I believe the microorganisms we call humans shine the brightest. Not because of what we are but because we have the ability to know who we want to become.
It took billions of years, according to our current estimations, to finally arrive at a species complex enough to understand what it is. Only now is that species beginning to take its first steps, and the walk has not been far, especially with the backwards steps it tends to take. The ultimate irony in this little species, at least at this distance in its walk, is that the realization of who they are tugs along the realization of how insignificant they are in the grand scheme of things. For many generations they will be powerless and anxious for their future. Only 2% of a difference in DNA separates the worrisome humans from the blissful monkeys, who are free to spend their generations wild and carefree until the ultimate end they will never see coming.