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This We Know : In a Nutshell

« Matters of Fact | This We Know #8

In a Nutshell

By Tom Evans

Coconuts aren’t nuts. They are drupes (from the Greek dryppa, meaning “tree-ripened”). Drupes are fruit with a fleshy outer coating enclosing a hard shell containing a seed.

No matter how many facts we collect, in a nutshell, all that we can ever really know is a model that works for us that allows us to get by in life.

We think we know for certain that we will die at some point and cease to exist. Some of course ‘know’ they will survive after their death. Some of those ‘know’ they will go to Heaven, or some to Hell. Others ‘know’ they will come back and live a near infinite set of existences, perhaps until they reach some form of Nirvana.

Others ‘know’ that this life is all they have got. As a result, a choice of paths exists. They could choose a hedonistic, selfish lifestyle. Alternatively, they could treasure every moment of every day, seeing beauty and awe in all around. A mix of these two paths is also a possibility.

A new level of knowing again can be attained when we simply know it is OK for each of us to hold our own model of the world.

It is a Good Thing that we know different things and hold different beliefs.

Conversely it is a Bad Thing to attempt to enforce our own model on others based on what we think we know.

This is the way the Universal Mind Pool increases and we end up knowing more ‘stuff’. The alternative route leads to oppression and a return to a Darker Age. Conversely, just knowing this is a possibility leads to a Bright Future indeed.

Let’s recap on what we think we know.

There are 7 billion of us hurtling through space at an incredible speed. One billion of us overweight and one billion are malnourished. We represent a small fraction of all life forms on the planet. Our planet revolves around one of billions of stars in one of billions of galaxies, in the Known Universe.

Incidentally, for all we know, this Universe is just one of countless Multiverses.

The weird part is this. We possess a tiny amount of matter we call a brain which is aware of itself and its relative position in the scheme of things. We just don’t quite know how we got here.

Some scientists theorise that two generations of stars had to explode in order to generate the heavy atoms to form our planet — and Us. This makes us sentient stardust.

Over five billion of us proclaim to ‘know’ though that some god or other created everything and Us.

Perhaps this was just by way of setting off a Big Bang as an experiment to see what happened.

Perhaps an infinity of Big Bangs have been set off by a Creator who was bored and wanted to brighten up a dull day. Not that days existed before Time too was created of course.

Perhaps, as some think or claim to know, we are all aspects of that very Creator. Perhaps we created ourselves so we could look back at ourselves and say, “Wow, that was one neat trick you pulled off there!”

So armed with this conjecture, as it is not knowledge yet at least, we could embark on a new phase in our journey on Spaceship Earth.

Except for a few lucky astronauts, we are all stuck here for this lifetime at least. So why not see if all 7 billion of us can get along better and make the best of what we have and the most of our time on this special planet? •

Next: Sisters and Brothers in Arms »

Tom EvansThis inspiring article is serialized from the ebook This We Know © 2012 Tom Evans. All rights reserved. More »