Monday, 3 December 2007


Today's post is brought to you by the question "why?"
Feel free to use this useful little question to find out about the motives of the other humans around you. Feel free to use it about anything you can see.

However, don't stretch poor little Why beyond it's limits. A better question when asking the universe questions is usually "how?" How does that work? How did the universe form? This kind of thing. Because, you see, little old Why has his limits. People seem to get awfully confused about the universe when you use Why, and they start to invoke all sorts of silly reasons.

"Why did the Universe start to exist?" seems to lead billions of people, inexorably, to god. As if the universe must have a reason for existing, a purpose. Poor old Universe doesn't have a purpose that we can properly discern, it only exists and, quite frankly, it does a rather good job of it. So, three cheers for the universe. But let's try to stick to how it came to exist and leave the why to the police and private detectives who deal with motives.

After all, as far as we know, motives have only existed as long as we have, which is really no time at all as far as the universe is concerned. Before we came along, it almost certainly had no motives. 4.5 billion years of hard, unconscious work it took before the universe had motives. Not bad going at all when all you get to start with is a quantum singularity.

So, as a species, let's try to remember that it is we who are the motives of the universe, and we are a comparatively new invention.


Harespring said...

I like being a new invention. As a very good example of the genre, may I get a prize please?

Stephen Bain said...

You may, but first you have to patent yourself.
You might find this hard as some idiots in America decided they could patent some of your genes and mine.

Prizes for being new inventions are scheduled to arrive around the 25th of December. This shall hereafter be referred to as Prizemas, a totally owned subsidiary of Coca Cola Corporation to be run in tandem with their other main festival, Christmas.