Saturday, December 29, 2007

This entire universe seems to work in steps. Even Life doesn't appear to happen gradually. Take for instance your aging body. You go to bed one night feeling great, and you wake up the next morning and your back is in complete pain. There was nothing gradual about that. You went to bed, you were feeling good, you woke up unable to bend over. Sure you were sleeping, but take it from me, your back did not gradually get worse.

Okay, so maybe that was a bad example. The weather has been a good example of this lately. With global warming becoming more and more apparent, we have seen quite the change in seasonal weather over the years. It wasn't too long ago that PA winters were cold and snow was plentiful. Then one year, it became warm and rainy. There was no gradualness about it. One winter there was snow the next winter there wasn't.

Gradualness has it's own scales. Sometimes the step is more noticeable than others. Even on the smallest of all scales, time and even matter itself are not gradual. Planck units estimate the the smallest length to be about 1.62 x 10-35 meters and the smallest unit of time to be around 5.39 x 10-44 seconds. This means that our entire universe, including all its mass, energy (those are actually the same thing, but you should know that by now), and time is a step function. Sure the steps are infinitesimally small, but they are steps nonetheless and since the universe often times acts as an immense fractal, these steps are not only multiplied, but magnified. So it only makes sense that the macro-world we experience be perceived in steps. Our brains sort of work that way. The emotions, sensations and ideas we experience, they all just happen. They aren't really gradual at all. So next time you decided to sit back, take it all in and wonder why things aren't happening very gradually, just remember, nothing really happens gradually at all. Ever.

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