Exploring Space

Posted by Nick Hughes on

“Nothing exists except atoms and empty space; everything else is opinion.” ~Democritus

This week’s quote brings up an important point. Although we tend to take life very seriously, the universe is basically a creative interplay between atoms and empty space. If you were to zoom all the way out to the galactic scale, the universe would appear as an infinite void, full of sparkling lights. If you were to zoom in all the way to the atomic scale, you would find a similar scenario.

Space is everywhere- it’s the invisible glue that holds our whole universe together. But the universe is not just empty space, it also consists of light and matter. And all matter in the universe consists of atoms. Scientists estimate that the average human consists of around a billion billion billion atoms. Scientists have also determined that an atom is 99.9999999% empty space.

How much space is inside an atom? If you were to picture the nucleus of an atom as being the size of a peanut, then the whole atom would be the size of a baseball stadium. That’s a lot of empty space. In fact, if you eliminated all the empty space inside your atoms, then your whole body would be able to fit inside a particle of dust, and all of mankind would fit into the volume of a sugar cube.

So, embrace the space that is all around you. Space is everywhere- not just on the outside but on the inside as well. Space is like the hidden canvas upon which the whole universe is created. It’s also a common thread that binds us all together. The space inside your atoms is the same as the space that’s inside mine, which is the same as the space that exists between the stars in distant galaxies. It’s all the same space! So, the next time you feel burdened by the heaviness of the world, remember that emptiness is an essential component of all existence. 

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