I often pond over the universe, it’s size and its greatness. Apparently, it’s so big we can’t even measure it.
The part we can see has a radius of around 46 billion light years. I also think about how there can possibly be more than 100 billion galaxies in it. And it fascinates me to think that only one of those galaxies is home to us humans. But then I remember how even in this galaxy, our home is just a tiny speck of dust floating around in an infinite world of darkness, just a grain of sand overpowered by a black sky. In fact, there are 300 billion other stars in our tiny corner of space. And as I think about how small our streets are in relation to our cities, and how our cities are so small in relation to our countries, it amazes me to realize how the earth can be so little in this spectacular solar system. And even so, I can’t help but think just how huge the earth seems in comparison to me.
And how astonishing it is. When I was young, I used to get to this point and stop. I would suddenly register how small we are, how pathetically tiny we seem in relation to the many oceans and countries and planets… and there wasn’t much more to say. Most of us live our lives struggling to comprehend this tininess. It’s uncomfortable to remind ourselves of how insignificant we seem.
When we reflect on the immenseness of the universe, our unexciting cosmic location, and the inevitable future end of humanity, our lives can appear utterly trivial. Though why should this be? Recently, I’ve been thinking about it more. I believe humans often forget how far we have come and the remarkable things we have been given on earth. Throughout my short time I’ve had the privilege of visiting many parts of this dot which allowed me to see our planet as a whole in all its dazzling beauty. Nothing can compare to a sun set on an exquisite beach somewhere in Southern Asia while the moon looms in the air, or lying in the midst of a desert in the early hours of the morning watching the stars flicker towards the opposite side of the world.
We can only thank Mother Earth for blessing us with such magnificence.