Please note! This essay has been submitted by a student.
I often pond over the universe, it’s size and its greatness. Apparently, it’s so big we can’t even measure it. The part we can see has a radius of around 46 billion light years. I also think about how there can possibly be more than 100 billion galaxies in it. And it fascinates me to think that only one of those galaxies is home to us humans. But then I remember how even in this galaxy, our home is just a tiny speck of dust floating around in an infinite world of darkness, just a grain of sand overpowered by a black sky. In fact, there are 300 billion other stars in our tiny corner of space. And as I think about how small our streets are in relation to our cities, and how our cities are so small in relation to our countries, it amazes me to realize how the earth can be so little in this spectacular solar system. And even so, I can’t help but think just how huge the earth seems in comparison to me. And how astonishing it is. When I was young, I used to get to this point and stop. I would suddenly register how small we are, how pathetically tiny we seem in the grand scheme of our many oceans and countries and planets…and there wasn’t much more to say.
Most of us live our lives struggling to comprehend this tininess. It’s uncomfortable to remind ourselves of how insignificant we seem. When we reflect on the immenseness of the universe, our unexciting cosmic location, and the inevitable future end of humanity, our lives can appear utterly trivial. Our own individual persons seem to disappear in this vast crowd, and even if the cosmic spotlight is on us humans, it is most certainly not on any one of us. As individuals, we really are merely drops in this ocean. Though why should this be? Recently, I’ve been thinking about it more. I believe humans often forget how far we have come and the remarkable things we have been given on earth. Throughout my short time, I’ve had the privilege of visiting many parts of our world which allowed me to see it as a whole in all its dazzling beauty. Nothing can compare to a sun set on an exquisite beach somewhere in Southern Asia while the moon looms in the air, or lying in the midst of a desert in the early hours of the morning watching the stars flicker towards the opposite side of the world. We can only thank Mother Earth for blessing us with such magnificence. Perhaps nature is one of the most beautiful ways to see God while we’re here on earth, yet it is something that is disregarded in our world today. The human race has evolved and our minds have been poisoned by the man-made borders from which so much blood is shed.
We have mechanized our society and poured fumes into the lungs of the earth, unaware of the gifts of creation. Our species is not all splendor. We’re so preoccupied with artificial differences like language and race that our petty concerns are consuming human life. In a world of insecurity, ambition and ego, it’s easy to be drawn in, to take chances with our lives, to believe that what we do and what people say about us is reason enough to gamble with death. How can we have come so far, achieved so much, yet still have so far to go?