The meaning of life (and death)

Simulation idea

Elon thinks we’re residing in a pc simulation. His argument goes one thing like this: The primary {photograph} was taken 195 years in the past. The primary online game (Pong) was launched 45 years in the past. At present, we have now 3D, augmented and digital worlds which are nearly indistinguishable from our world — with hundreds of thousands of individuals taking part in concurrently. It’s now unimaginable to inform the distinction between an actual {photograph} or a pc generated one.

If we went from 2 rectangles and a dot to nearing real-world pixel to pixel comparability in 45 years — the place will we be in one other 45 years? If I could ask, to take your eyes off this display, and simply go searching.

Does Tremendous Mario know he’s in a online game? Are we in a online game? Elon thinks it’s, “1 in billions that we’re in base actuality” and if he might ask A.I. one query, it might be, “What’s outdoors our simulation?” Nevertheless, even when we might go outdoors the simulation, who’s to say we’re not simply in one other simulation? The simulation idea is simply not deep sufficient.

Everlasting recurrence

Friedrich Nietzsche offers us a a lot deeper description of the character of actuality. In his e book, The Homosexual Science, he writes:

What if, some day or evening, a demon had been to steal after you in your loneliest loneliness and say to you: “This life as you now dwell it and have lived it, you’ll have to dwell as soon as extra and innumerable instances extra; and there will likely be nothing new in it, however each ache and each pleasure and each thought and sigh and all the pieces unutterably small or nice in your life should return to you, all in the identical succession and sequence — even this spider and this moonlight between the bushes, and even this second and I personally. The everlasting hourglass of existence is turned the other way up repeatedly — and also you with it, speck of mud!”

Nietzsche referred to as this idea the Everlasting Recurrence. Every little thing will return to you precisely as they did and in the very same sequence. Your whole life has already occurred an infinite quantity of instances previously and can reoccur an infinite quantity of instances sooner or later.

Poincaré recurrence theorem

This isn’t mere philosophy — In physics, the Poincaré recurrence theorem states that every one techniques will, after a sufficiently lengthy however finite time, return to the very same state because the preliminary state. To borrow Max Tegmark’s labored instance within the Could 2003 version of Scientific American: Primarily based on the variety of other ways a quantity of area of some given dimension will be crammed with elementary particles, Tegmark assumes that our observable Universe (the Hubble quantity) has a diameter of 8x1026m, and a nucleon measures 2×10–13m throughout. Which supplies the Universe a capability of round 10118 nucleons and due to this fact permits for 210118 potential methods of filling a Universe-sized area with nucleons (ours being a type of methods). This reasoning leads him to recommend that equivalent copies of human beings are separated by about 101028m and that inside 101092m from earth there’s a quantity of area 100 light-years in diameter which is equivalent to our personal native area.

In layman’s phrases; probability has rolled the cube of life and landed on the suitable particles to create you and me, as a result of, simply go searching — right here we’re. And rolling the cube sufficient instances will ultimately provide the similar numbers twice. Due to this fact, when you traveled far sufficient, you’ll, inevitably, meet a reproduction of your self.


If we settle for this to be true then shouldn’t we goal for utopia? For the best good of the human race? Not essentially. Fyodor Dostoevsky in his e book, Notes from the Underground, makes his case:

“Bathe upon him each earthly blessing, drown him in a sea of happiness, in order that nothing however bubbles of bliss will be seen on the floor; give him financial prosperity, such that he ought to don’t have anything else to do however sleep, eat truffles and busy himself with the continuation of his species, and even then out of sheer ingratitude, sheer spite, man would play you some nasty trick. He would even threat his truffles and would intentionally want probably the most deadly garbage, probably the most uneconomical absurdity, merely to introduce into all this constructive good sense his deadly improbable component.”

Merely put; even when we had been to attain utopia, the very first thing we’d do is use one thing to smash out of sheer boredom and ingratitude. I can’t see how it might be in any other case.

If it’s not the best good that we ought to be aiming for, then what’s the purpose of all of it? I suggest to you: What if issues are the best way they’re as a result of it couldn’t have been another approach. What if we dwell in one of the best of all potential worlds?

The perfect of all potential worlds

Josh Barnett as soon as advised a narrative that actually resonated with me, it goes one thing like this: Think about you can lucid dream each single evening. You’d be capable of journey via time, fly with the birds, run and snicker with family members via open sunny fields of pure happiness. Each evening you’ll enter this place (for months, years, a long time,…) till you’ve skilled all the pieces your coronary heart desired. Then what’s left to expertise? You’d then dabble within the deepest and darkest areas of your creativeness and dwell on this state till there may be nothing left. This may go on for a lot of extra years till you’ve turn into a shell of your former self. With out objective, with out which means and with none want to maneuver ahead. After experiencing all there may be to expertise — all of the highs and all of the lows — then what’s left to expertise? The reply is uncertainty.

And that’s the world we dwell in at the moment, not realizing what tomorrow might deliver. What if issues are the best way they’re as a result of there may be nothing else. That is the place we ended up, as a result of it couldn’t have been another approach.

That means of life

So, “What does all of it imply?” Which is similar query as, “What’s the which means of life?” Some questions can’t be answered linguistically, they can’t be decreased to phrases. They stick round as a result of they’re nonetheless attempting to inform us one thing, we haven’t absolutely grasped its which means. They’re unending questions, as a result of they’re attempting to reply inquiries to unending video games. Nevertheless, intimations will be present in tales or myths, as a result of they evoke emotions and feelings that phrases alone can’t. I consider that you just can’t discuss in regards to the which means of life with out speaking in regards to the which means of loss of life.

Story of life

You get up in a area in the course of nowhere. Not realizing who you might be, the place you got here from, or the place you’re going. You have a look round and there’s no landmark in sight. So that you stand up, mud your self off then simply begin strolling. As you’re strolling, your fairy godmother seems earlier than you. With a smile on her face, she asks, “Your remaining want. What is going to it’s?” “Last want? I don’t even keep in mind who I’m.” “What’s your remaining want?” she endured. With none extra hesitation, you blurt out, “I want to keep in mind all the pieces!” With a cackle in her laughter, she whispers, “Humorous, as a result of your final want was to overlook all the pieces.”

And that’s the story of life. We had been thrown into this world, not choosing our mother and father or ethnicity or faith. But, right here we’re, anticipated to navigate this life and discover our personal approach.

Story of loss of life

Your eyes open to the rays of daylight pouring via the window curtains — 5 minutes earlier than the alarm. You hop away from bed, bathe, then downstairs the place breakfast is made. As you allow the front-door; you’re taking within the deep blue sky, sounds of birds chirping and a gust of cool summer season breeze. You arrive at work early, fulfill your whole duties and keep a bit late to arrange issues for tomorrow. The commute house is tiring, however peaceable. After dinner, everybody gathers across the TV, considering on the day. And when your eyes begin feeling heavy, you kiss everybody goodbye then head upstairs. And as you’re mendacity there, you soak up one remaining breath… and with a deep exhale, you go to sleep…

And that’s the story of loss of life. The ethical of the story is, when you fulfill your obligations each single day then you needn’t fear about tomorrow.


Nietzsche needed to recommend {that a} well-lived life was one you wouldn’t thoughts residing time and again, for all of eternity. As a result of, how might it’s another approach?

With each iteration of this life, nevertheless unbelievable it could be, try to shift one atom in direction of the nice. You might not know what the nice is, however you completely know what the dangerous issues are that it’s good to cease doing. So cease doing it. And see what occurs.

“We will not stop from exploration, and the top of all our exploring will likely be to reach at the place we began and know the place for the primary time.” — T. S. Eliot

Thanks for studying,

Van Trinh

submitted by /u/van_trinh

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *