I was watching a film, yesterday, and one of the characters said, “I was rummaging in the forest when I found a 1922 Silver Dollar, and I realised how much history had occurred before I was even thought of.” Interesting thought – let’s follow it a little –
Our solar system, we are told, is 4.5 billion years old. The observable universe is 13.5 billion years old. Therefore, by simple mathematics, the universe is 9 billion years older than our solar system. Hold that thought for a minute.
We see constant arguments, on TV and in the press, with experts stating that, for example, the ancient Egyptians could not possibly have moved this huge rock because, even with our technology today, we couldn’t move it. Apparently, we are the pinnacle of technological, academic, and artistic development and nothing prior to us could possibly have achieved the things we do.
So, for the 9 billions years before we were even thought of, did nothing happen?
Planets, stars, and galaxies develop at different rates and some reach maturity long before others. We are told that our solar system is typical and average, therefore there will be some that developed before us and some after. On the astronomical scale, when we are talking in terms of billions of years, a million years is the mere blink of eye and stars, particularly 2nd or 3rd generation stars like our own, develop almost simulateously, i.e. with 100s of millions of years of each other.
Let us suppose a civilisation developed only one million years before ourselves. If we look back over 1000 years our races seem primitive, so imagine how advanced a race would be if it was one million years ahead of us. Imagine if it was only 1000 years ahead of us. Imagine a race ten million years ahead of us – it could have colonised our galaxy 10 times over while we were just a twinkle in Evolution’s eye.
Of course, in our localised, arrogant, ego-centric view of ourselves, nothing could have developed before we did so the foregoing is just a load of nonsense …