The Grandest Vision For Humanity
--by Riva Melissa Taz (Jul 17, 2017)
The universe is complex and beautiful.
When we listen to stories of humanity, life and death, we can’t fathom the complexity of the narratives of all those who have lived before us, of all those who will live after us, the vast unimportance of ourselves in the sequence of the eternal everything. The universe doesn’t and won’t ever really know who we are, merely just one of many dots in this vast space-time spectrum. A vast space-time spectrum that we should protect. But protect for what purpose? How many of us actually daydream about the goal of humanity in the universe? What does it look like?
Sometimes I think about humanity in the same way I regard a painting by Georges Seurat. His use of pointillism, which is the artistic technique of painting thousands of microdots on a canvas, that contrast and compliment each other in a multitude of colours. From up close these dots seem nonsensical, even plain wrong- a blue dot next to a yellow dot, that from further away appears white. From a distant viewpoint these individual dots combine to make an intricate scene. An analogy of all the things in the universe. Each life, idea, love simply a tiny colourful dot, complimenting and contrasting with those neighboring, but from further away these blend to contribute towards a bigger picture, a bigger goal.
How big is this overall picture? Well, it’s huge. The distance of the known universe is 900 billion light years in diameter, where each light year is 5.87 trillion miles. The full scale is unfathomable to us. And it’s old too. 13.75 billion years old. Our human-like ancestors have only inhabited this universe, this planet on which we stand, for around 6 million years, a ridiculously short time-slice compared to the true scale of the context. How lucky we are, right here, right now, to have such an opportunity, to have the agency to shape the planet to a manifestation that represents the human race.
We’ve come a long way, and we can go a long way too. We could quite literally inherit the universe, to make it ours, not for the sake of possession, but for the sake of protection. For the sake of universal flourishing. Every human so far has died a martyr for evolution. What is the end goal for all this creation and loss? We must fight that humanity’s purpose was not just about sustenance and survival.