It may be all fine and beautiful for most people living on Earth, even though nobody denies that our planet has its shortcomings. Most of us have food, shelter, a job, a business, loved ones that care for us, hobbies, and many more things that give us joy and satisfaction. But you know what they say that nothing lasts forever in this world, and it’s a harsh and purely scientific fact that we all have to deal with.
Both science and religion claim that the world will end someday, although our existence as conscious and intelligent beings is a true miracle. Of course, there’s a chance that humanity will learn someday how to manipulate matter, time, and space in its favor. But one of the terrifying scenarios is that the Sun will expand its volume enough to engulf us, along with other planets. This is not the plot for a Science Fiction movie, but true reality of what awaits us in the far future if humanity won’t somehow stop the process.
‘Things can only get worse’
Brian Edward Cox is the one that uttered this terrifying phrase. He is an English physicist who serves as a professor of particle physics at the School of Physics and Astronomy from the University of Manchester. He reminded us that the idea of the world facing its end matches very well a fundamental rule of physics:
There is a law of physics called the second law of thermodynamics and, to paraphrase it, it means – on a global scale across the universe – things can only get worse.
So things tend to get more disordered, they tend to decay away.
Practically, what Brian Cox is saying is that we’re getting close to the end of the world with every year, day, hour, minute, and breath that we take. He even emphasized how absurd it is to think some other way:
I was once involved in putting the opposite forward, that things can only get better, (in reference to his part in D:Ream’s Nineties hit) but that’s a gross violation of the second law of thermodynamics.
Will the Sun kill us?
Ironically enough, our own Sun is a great candidate for destroying the Earth in the far future. If our planet doesn’t get obliterated in the meanwhile by a quasar, a black hole, or who knows what peculiar cosmic phenomenon, we can count on the Sun do get the job done. Although it offers us daily energy, heat, light, and occasional skin cancer, the Sun will ultimately burn out all the hydrogen that gets converted into helium.
In 3.5 billion years, our star becomes bigger enough to evaporate all the oceans from Earth, leaving us without water. No water means simply no life. Although nobody would mind hitting such a venerable age of 3.5 billion years old, we’re somehow glad that none of us will be around during those apocalyptic times. But our far descendants might be if humankind won’t disappear or evolve into totally different creatures.
The end of the world may be far away for now, but there’s no telling what tremendously huge cosmic dangers are lurking in the shadows. The Earth is just a small and lonely blue dot in the galaxy, meaning it can be totally vulnerable. As most of its inhabitants are worried about diseases or space rocks coming from space, the truth is that there are phenomenons millions of times more dangerous than asteroids and comets. For the moment, humanity isn’t sure that we can deal even with comets and asteroids if they are threatening to destroy our planet. But the big news is that science keeps improving, which provides us plenty of hope.