look at the stars

02 Dec 2022

When was the last time you looked into the dark sky towards the stars and wonder in awe.

We are all so occupied in our own monologue inside our minds that we have forgotten about how small we are in. While you are reading this, earth is spinning and hurling in space around the sun. The sun is a fricking huge thermonuclear reactor that is 330,000 times bigger than the earth.

And then we have the milky way galaxy whose size is mind boggling. Oh wait, there are 200 billion of them. Wow!

I wonder whether we would ever understand how all of this came into existence. The universe is so huge. Is there even an end ? Let's assume we invent tech to live forever and get on an advanced spaceship which can travel from one galaxy to another and refuel itself by finding nuclear fuel in one of the planets of every galaxy it visits. So we start travelling from one galaxy to other, to the next one, to the next one and on and on. And let's assume we get to travel as long as we want. Will we ever hit an edge of the universe? It seems paradoxical, because if we were to hit the edge, then logic suggests that something should exist beyond the edge. If something exists beyond the edge, then we have not reached the edge of the universe.

I find myself arriving at the conclusion that "I know, that I do not know". And that I am currently limited by our language and logic, not by my ability. To put it another way, I am confident in my ability (given enough time) to understand quantum physics or abstract algebra, but I am sure that I won't be able to answer the question of "Does the universe have an edge?" with our current language and logical framework known to humankind.

It's certain that our logic and language will not change in my lifetime, and it might be really long before we have a breakthrough.

There is another aspect of the the title - "look at the stars" that's worth pondering over. Its around the problem where our upcoming generation is glued to the phones. I am not saying that everyone should look at the stars. You can look at plants, you can look at food, you can look at your car, your house or anything that you want to look at. Copernicus looked at the planets not because someone made him to, its because he wanted to. I am asking you to introspect, across your entire day, how much of it that you are doing is programmed by society, media and an army of data scientists paid to keep you hooked to your phones.