“We are just an…

English: NASA StarChild image of Stephen Hawking.

NASA StarChild image of Stephen Hawking. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“We are just an advanced breed of monkeys on a minor planet of a very average star. But we can understand the Universe. That makes us something very special.”
― Stephen Hawking

Pure awesomeness pulled straight out of the murky swirls of Professor Hawking’s brain.

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4 thoughts on ““We are just an…

  1. Reblogged this on Loopholes on Life and commented:
    Great quote from Hawking. I think it puts into perspective both our ‘relative’ significance in the universe and reinforces perception as well — after all, who are us ‘slightly more advanced monkeys’ to assume that ‘advanced’ isn’t relative in itself, and that those ‘less advanced monkeys’ have, perhaps an even more, clear grasp on how the universe works?

    In fact, perhaps those ‘less advanced monkeys’ define advanced differently — perhaps their understanding of the universe is intuitive and they view US as less advanced for fruitlessly breaking down particles more and more and exploring the cosmos further and further — and in the process, THE ONLY THING WE HAVE DISCOVERED IS INFINITY. 🙂

  2. Haha yes, for all we know this alien race that you postulate could very well be described in such a way. It certainly is fun to think about these civilisations that may exist far off in the universe isn’t it? These civilisations could be so alien, so different in terms of their nodes of thinking; that they completely reshape what we mean by intelligence and critical thinking. Although, I think this quote has a special significance to not just me, but the human race as a single, vibrant community. You regularly hear physicists and cosmologists talking about how insignificant and minuscule we are compared to the vastness and grandeur of the universe. They often say that we’re just floating around in a ball of rock shadowed by the vast enveloping darkness of the cosmos (Carl Sagan springs to mind!). But, Professor Hawking doesn’t do this at all, he gives a special significance to the human race. And, maybe it’s just my human ego talking but it’s pleasant to think that we’re something special. Also, I think that one of the most important thing that characterises the human race is our inert ability to want to find things out. We’re an incredibly nosy race. Mostly, we want knowledge just for the sake of gaining knowledge. We want to find things out just for that visceral thrill of discovering something ; something that no one else has ever known before.

    The fact that we’ve created a cure for smallpox or discovered electricity is-in my opinion anyway- just a bonus. It wasn’t necessarily the main goal. After all, there are limits to what one can know, but there will never be a limit on what one doesn’t know.

    • well put! loved the video you shared as well — THAT is very much how I think re: how big yet small we all are in this universe! In my mind I just assume the significance we place in ourselves is no more or less significant than other species place in themselves —- buuuut, in fairness, I was the crazy thinker in class lol… It is indeed logical to postulate that our species has a unique ability to differentiate in that regard! Once again, great post – I enjoy your thoughts/blog!

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