What is usefulness of such a vast universe!!?

9 Answers

  • Favorite Answer

    Hi Neptune N,

    I like the fact that you’ve posed a philosphocal/religious question in the ‘Science & Mathematics > Astronomy & Space’ section. I found the first six answers unsatisfactory, so FWIW, here’s my two cents.

    “Usefulness” is a human value judgement, dependant on the existence of one or more sentient beings, for whom the entity in question may (or may not) prove useful. For instance, a twig of the right size may be a useful tool for:

    • a chimpanzee, to extract tasty termites from their nest, or

    • a New Caledonian crow, to dislodge nutritious wood-boring beetle grubs from rotting tree trunks, or

    • an Australian aboriginal artist, to use to apply pigment to a dot painting

    But the Great Wall of China, or the Andes mountain range, is of no use whatsoever to these beings. And while the former was constructed by people for whom in served a purpose and proved useful, the latter is a consequence of the geological forces of nature – the subduction of the Nazca and Antarctic oceanic tectonic plates below the continental South American plate. And while we could say that the Andes mountains are useful to the species of plants, animals, and people who have adapted to live within their ecological niches, such use is consequent to and contingent upon the mountains coming into existence in the first place; it’s NOT that the mountains were purposefully brought into being to prove useful for those species, because natural geological mountain-building forces are necessarily purposeless and undirected.

    So too with our vast universe – the natural cosmological laws that have governed the way in which it has expanded and developed the structures which we observe in it today are also necessarily purposeless and undirected. Or as renowned cosmologist Lawrence Krauss is fond of saying, “Empirical discoveries continue to tell us that the universe is the way it is, whether we like it or not.” [1]

    So our universe is not an object which can prove useful to an individual, like a twig, or and artefact designed and built by people for a useful purpose, like a defensive boundary wall. Our universe is a product of a set of natural physical laws, a highly energetic starting condition, and 13.72 billion years of natural law-governed expansion and structuring, which has resulted in the evolution of conscious beings who can ask big questions of each other, such as, “Yes, but what is it all FOR!!?” An inference of such a question is an Intelligent Designer with a purpose in mind for creating our universe – but inventing such gods and their associated creation myths is as old as human consciousness, and a reification in the heavens of our purposeful agency on Earth. God(s) are evidence-free fictional characters, whereas scientific cosmology is grounded in solid evidence, from observations and experiments, and congruent with particle physics, chemistry, geology, and astronomy.

    That said, here’s one use to which I put the vastness of our universe,inspired by ‘The View From The Centre of the Universe’ by cosmologist Joel R. Primack and cultural philosopher Nancy Ellen Abrams [2]. As best we know so far, life may be an extremely rare occurrence in our vast universe, since we’ve yet to detect it anywhere but on our home planet. So as a species with a highly evolved moral sense, I believe that we should aim to ensure that the precious diversity of life forms with which we have co-evolved on Spaceship Earth is set to thrive into the distant future. Unfortunately, quite the reverse is actually the case, as the “my species, right or wrong” attitude that holds the majority of humanity in its grip is helping human activity perpetrate the sixth mass extinction event in the 4 billion year history of life on Earth [3]. So I find the unique beauty and preciousness of our home world’s biodiversity in the midst of our vast universe to be a useful motivating factor in political activism aimed at conserving ecosystems and stemming our ecocidal destructiveness.

    Hope that’s broadened your understanding, and given you some pointers for further exploration,

    Share and Enjoy, Peace-&-Love, Dalinian – ★ ☮ ♥ ꂨ ♻


    “The important thing is not to stop questioning; curiosity has its own reason for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when contemplating the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvellous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of the mystery every day.” ~ Albert Einstein, ‘LIFE’ magazine, 02 May 1955


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    • Dialectical materialist

    • Cosmology connoisseur

    • Physics aficionado

    Source(s): [1] “The Universe is the way it is, whether we like it or not.” See, eg: • Everything and Nothing – An Interview with Lawrence Krauss » http://richarddawkins.net/articles/644472-everythi... [2] ‘The View From The Centre of the Universe’ by Joel R. Primack and Nancy Ellen Abrams: » http://viewfromthecenter.com/ [3] The sixth mass extinction event in the 4 billion year history of life on Earth; see, eg: • The Pleistocene-Holocene Event: The Sixth Great Extinction » http://www.rewilding.org/thesixthgreatextinction.h...
  • 9 years ago

    That's not a proper way to think over it. You must think that there are lots of matters in this universe to study/think over & u should try to explore it through scientific manner.

    Just consider the universe as the study material.

  • 9 years ago

    It is vast but finite,it Simply conforms to the circumstances that arose from it's emergence.

    It is likely no more than 6 billion light years in radius.

  • 9 years ago

    It keeps simple creatures, like us, endlessly guessing about it. After all, it'd be an awfully boring place if we actually did figure it all out. Come to think of it, sounds like a way to occupy some way more sophisticated intelligences too. After all, who wants to be bored for an eternity?

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  • May I suggest that usefulness is not a requirement for existence?

  • 9 years ago

    The universe was not designed for us and has no purpose, it just exists.

  • 9 years ago

    That's not really a meaningful way to think about it. However, two things i suppose: the mind of God is unknowable and beyond us, and that a work of art can be great where "less is more", for instance Paul Klee's Black Square. Both of those, obviously, assume there is a God of some kind.

  • 9 years ago

    none......if u're considering this question, why not consider this hypothetical question: what is life's purpose here in this universe?

    Source(s): wow...just wow...
  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    No use at all.

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