By looking at the whole Universe occasionally and at our place in it, we can feel better about those things over which we have had no influence and more comfortable with our attempts to direct our actions, even when we failed. We have done many things that didn’t work out very well and succeeded with a few that probably had a positive influence on other people’s lives and ultimately on the whole Universe. Our lives recently have been quite long with respect to most other organic thinking species, and because we have had better control over our environment than ever before most of us have lived pleasant lives.
But our conscious lives are something to be lived more than talked about as an abstraction, and I have been pondering over our species’ place in the grander scheme of things in our Universe. Because we have some ability to think about the Universe and its historical development and future possibilities, it is important that we do so.
Thinking BIG is perhaps the most important thing we can do because it appears that we are the species that will trigger the next paradigm shift for what can happen in the Universe. I’m thinking GRANDIOSE! What we are now doing is converting physical non-thinking, non-self-aware matter into a sentient self-aware entity. It seems appropriate to call it a singular sentient being because it will in many respects become a single thinking being. There will be independently fully functioning sentient parts, but the instant they come into communication they can have a total brain transfer of whatever information they choose to transfer. What that information would be is impossible for us to know. Perhaps what would interest them would be vast multidimensional games like Go. These “games” might answer problems absolutely incomprehensible to us.
From our vantage point at the moment it is unlikely that we would know what computer brains the size of the Earth would think about. They might not be that big, but over a billion years of converting physical matter to connected thinking matter, there might not be much matter left on Earth that wasn’t somehow contributing to the functioning of the brain, so it would be very big.
The Universe has brought us into being and our job is to help the Universe bring its brain into being.