Here on this lump of rock…

Do you ever find yourself sitting around attempting to contemplate the entire universe all at once? Or is that just me?

We sit here on this lump of rock. The immensity of it alone boggles my mind. Earth is HUGE, compared to me. But I haven’t traveled more than a couple hundred miles from home. I suppose if you travel around a lot it doesn’t seem as huge. But it’s still pretty big.

Yet this lump of rock is so small, pointless, and vulnerable on the grand scheme of things. We can look up at the moon, and it doesn’t look so far away. But it’s kind of hard to judge distances with something like that. If you were to actually move out away from the Earth and Moon a few hundred thousand miles or so, you would see them something like this:
    .                             .

Compared to their sizes, they are pretty far apart. Otherwise the moon would look much more gigantic in our sky (like it used to, billions of years ago). And yet, if you back even further, Earth and moon merge into a single point of light. The distance between the Earth-Moon system and other planets is HUGE! I can hardly even imagine it. Yet we’ve sent little (and big) spacecraft out there, cruising around between planets. That makes me feel really good.

Any time we send something (except ICBMs) into orbit or, especially, beyond, I get really excited. Humans are explorers. It’s just our nature. If we weren’t, we’d all still be stuck in one tribe in Africa (or probably be extinct). I hope we continue to invest in our explorations, and spread ourselves across the solar system and the galaxy.

Because, you know, Earth ain’t gonna be inhabitable forever (especially if we keep trying our best to destroy it). And it isn’t going to be here forever, either. I think we, as an intelligent species, deserve to continue to exist until there is no more energy left in the universe. In order to do that, we gotta get off this lump of rock.

It’s not easy, getting off lumps of rock, but we can do it, and we will do it. It is essential for the survival of our species.

Some people might say, “Well, the Earth is going to be fine for another couple hundred years at least… why should we worry about it now?” Well, you have to start at some point. If you wait a couple hundred years before going into space, then you’ve got a lot of technology to develop really fast in order to get people off this rock. But if you start early (now), you can take the time to develop the technology, and get it right, and improve it, as we slowly spread ourselves outward. Believe me, our great great grandkids will thank us for that, even if they hate us for destroying the planet.

So yeah, that’s my little rant for today. Hopefully we will get off this lump of rock and go to other lumps of rock and beyond, or something.

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