We’ve all heard that line before. Wait, you have heard that right? It wasn’t just me? Alright well if nobody has said it to you I guess I should be the one to break the news. But, seriously, nobody? You’ve had a really caring group of friends and family; Digression overload!
But you are indeed nothing! Look at yourself right now, sure as hell doesn’t feel like it does it? After all that is the source of almost all religions, that sense of self and that this thing that we are is too whole and complete to not be designed. We are ourselves, we are unique and individual. When you paint shit on my forehead do I not notice it as being on my forehead when I look in the mirror?
Which reminds me, seriously, who paints on other people’s faces? That is really rude.
But, I think, I’ve discussed before that on the grand scheme of things the majority of the matter in your body isn’t even you. The majority of the cells in your body actually belong to bacteria that have no identity with you, you are just the universe they took up residence in. If you were designed someone decided that you needed a lot of freeloaders to be “whole”.
That’s not it though! This isn’t why you are nothing! Sure I mean it is kind of lame that you managed to go all this time being more a mobile hotel than a human being but that’s just a subjective emotional tug that I’m throwing at you in hopes of eliciting emotion. No, indeed, the reality is much more interesting and it comes down to a matter of perspective. And keep in mind with what I’m about to discuss if you don’t believe this you might as well not believe in anything. I mean that literally, cars, planes, air, water, dogs, cats, doors, trees, etc. Literally by discounting this you discount the entirety of existence and there is even a name for it! But I’m not going to tell you what it is called because I’m evil.
You are made of molecules, beautiful little bundles of information. Those molecules are themselves made up of atoms, little delightful protons, neutrons, and electrons that combine in various combinations to create unique traits that we know as elements. Those too are actually made up of smaller particles but that is likely not necessary for this discussion (but you really should read up on quarks, all those lovely gluons, muons, and bosons). There is a huge amount of space between the nucleus of an atom and the electrons ring (cloud) that surrounds it. How much of the total space of an atom is empty space? 99.99999999%.
Think about that for a moment. The actual physical components of the atoms that make up your body only account for .00000001% of the space. Imagine if I told you your bank account was 99.99999999% empty? You’d say it didn’t exist.
And yet you, exist, don’t you? Certainly you are nothing but you are equally here reading this so there must be something going on. How then can I relate this to you? If you are anywhere near as bored as I am and find yourself thinking about this kind of nonsense I’m sure you already relate. But we might as well go full retard and look at some of the largest scales imaginable to get the point across. After all I’m vomiting ad nauseum about how I see every person as a galaxy in a vast universe across the bubble that is the Earth (just as the universe we live in is likely in a bubble state, I’ll be shocked if it isn’t).
Many people erroneously see the solar system looking like this. There is so much wrong with this image that it would take me a while to stop shouting just to get it all out. But the point remains that this is what we imagine. We see a bunch of planets (lets call them atoms for now) and some small spaces between this. We can relate to this in the sense that we understand there is space between the planets. This is (an inaccurate) god’s eye view, as it were. You are looking at it from such a zoomed out scale that everything looks very close, indeed if we were looking from a distant galaxy it would look like all our planets were butt to face (not something I advise visualizing).
This however is how it really pans out. There is a huge amount of space between atoms, and even this image doesn’t fully express just how much vast space there is between the planets. These objects are tens of millions of miles apart at their nearest (the tiny blips you see near the sun) and the objects further out are hundreds or even thousands of millions of miles apart.
But if you zoom out far enough it starts to look like they are all knuckle to knuckle. This is what happens when we look at ourselves, we are looking at our universe from such an unimaginable distance away (in relation to the size of an atom) that it looks like we are all solid objects.
Zoom out far enough and billions of stars start to look like they are one single soup of light, hundreds of galaxies, thousands even, start to look like little freckles on the top of a cupcake. Those spaces between the galaxies being not dissimilar to the folds in your skin, the space that a needle might pass to draw some blood. It’s all a matter of scale and distance that gives us the impression that things are whole. It is through critical thinking and careful observation that we find the truth, that the universe is utterly and literally unimaginably huge in both directions, towards the ultimate of macros and the epitome of micros.
You are anything but solid, you are a vast emptiness. You are nothing by any appreciable scale.
But that little something that exists in the nothing is so crucially important. It is from that 0.00000001% that the entire you resides. The tiny spec of you that exists in that vast cosmos of empty space has managed to be born, to think, perhaps to love and to even create other vast empty cosmos.
Equally empty organisms have shacked up in the lattice work of your innards and they do live out their nothing existences. With our tiny bit of real estate, an unimaginably small amount of physical matter (in relation to the space), we have managed to value ourselves so highly. Every atomically small fragment of us is appreciated to a scale that would make gold (equally empty it might be) envious.
So the next time someone tells you that you are nothing be glad that they are so wise. Hopefully too you will appreciate just how vast and godlike you are in respect to the very building blocks that make all things…well things.