I have been listening to my main man Neil DeGrasse Tyson lately. He has a podcast called Star Talk Radio and it talks about the cosmos and it has gotten me thinking lately. When we start thinking in the grand scheme of the universe we are really really unimportant. It has started to put me in my place. Everyday I try to make my reality better than the day before and sometimes I succeed and some days I do not. After thinking in terms of the universe, why are we so caught up in ourselves?
I know that we are only aware of ourselves, referring to human beings. When Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth”, came out I remember watching it at my friend Jamison’s house with of group of incredibly liberal thinking people located in Austin, TX. The whole time I was watching Al Gore’s PowerPoint presentation on what we are doing to the earth, one thought kept coming into my head- The earth does not need us, we need the earth. Now this may be for 2 very real reasons: 1) I am seeing a bigger picture than myself and know that the decisions that humans make will ultimately be corrected by the earth getting rid of us and starting over or B) I am a really big douche bag and just wanted to get all the liberals riled up about fossil fuels.
Let me explain. I did not own a car for 5 years of my life, if you want to count the 15 years before I turned 16 it is 21 years. So let’s get something straight before we go pointing fingers at me saying that I want to use all the fossil fuels and screw the environment. I am far left on this issue, the environment, and will hug a tree if you want me to prove it. But, the thing is that I know my life is not that important and in the long run of all of time I won’t even be mentioned. For a group of people who have ever existed they strive to be remembered, you may fit into this category and you may want to make your mark on this world. That is all well and good, but know that I cannot understand your logic. If you have ever had a conversation with me you know that I am confident in who I am, some people would call this “having an ego” or “being cocky”. Those are true statements, but that arrogance does not carry over once my life is extinguished from this existence. My wife and some of my friends know what is to happen to me after death, cremated and no headstone or anything to show that I was here. I know there will be pictures by my family and friends, but I want them to remember what I worked to change and not at all that I did it. I hope that when I leave this place it will be a better place. It may have something to do with me, but if it doesn’t so be it. Not being remembered has always been a thought inside my own head. It is rare for me to think in the long term, but when it is done it is never in the sense of “I want to have a legacy or be remembered for something.” It has always been, “I will do as much positive as I can on this planet for the short amount of time I am here and when I die I die, that is all folks.”
Mortality does strange things to people. In some instances humans want to help, but in most they want to be remembered for something. What is amazing is how many want to just be remembered for small things and even sometimes for selfish things. People seem to need to have a sense of belonging or permanence to their lives. It is fascinating to contemplate a world without yourselves, some cannot fathom this particular reality. The human race is the dominant species on the planet and that is understandable, but if we just look up at night we can get some perspective. We live on a tiny rock a short distance from an energy source where there are thousands if not millions of other instances of this happening in our universe. Now if you believe in a god of any sort, this sense of importance is given to you in scripture. The religious book of your choice tells you that you were formed in the image of your god and that is some pretty high praise. You, yes you, were put on this rock in the image of a deity. That can really give you a sense of importance and justifiably because deities are just that- gods that rule over us, so a little ego may be in order. But there also the option that with all those other rocks close to other sources of energy there is bound to be one more out there that has life of some sort. You have to have an incredible sense of self-worth or really devout to believe that nothing else is out there. Now don’t go putting me in the category of aliens visiting us and probing us anally, but maybe just maybe we do not or they do not yet have the technology to travel thousands if not million of light years to visit each other. We have reached the closest rock to us, the moon, and that is far as we have gone with people and not many have done that yet. So is it such a far stretch to believe that we just can’t make contact? I am sure that I will live my entire life and never know of life on another planet, intelligent life on another planet and that is fine by me. I am perfectly content to walk around this earth as much as possible and just see everything it has to offer. In the end I will just be decaying matter on this planet and that is perfectly okay with me.