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Humans a tiny, recent but significant blip in cosmos?


From Nick Hughes at Aeon:

We tend to treat power as though it is intrinsically valuable. We seek it out and covet it, quite irrespective of how we might wield it and what it might get us. One need only look at the history of totalitarian politics to recognise this tendency in its most grotesque form. But power isn’t intrinsically valuable, it’s only instrumentally valuable – valuable as a means to an end. And whether or not they are objectively valuable, the ends that matter to us, the things that we care about most – our relationships, our projects and goals, our shared experiences, social justice, the pursuit of knowledge, the creation and appreciation of art, music and literature, and the future and fate of ours and other species – do not depend to any considerable extent on our having control over a vast but largely irrelevant Universe. We might be distinctly lacking in power from the cosmic perspective, and so, in a sense, insignificant. But having such power and such significance wouldn’t make much of a difference anyway. To lament its lack and respond with despair and nihilism is merely a form of narcissism. Most of what matters to us is right here on Earth. More.

Good points. Even to wonder if we are significant in the cosmos is to be something that is intrinsically different from almost everything else.

See also: The Science Fictions series at your fingertips: Human evolution

"Der Wille zur Macht" is worthless where it does not serve the principle of utility; Christian utility being my preference. LocalMinimum

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