I have no idea how old the Earth is. Hundreds of billions of years old or something like that? Either way, I’m not a historian. I just know that it is really, really, old. With an extensive history. Yet with all its might and all its story, the Earth is just one speck of dust in this multi-verse of a galaxy.
How many galaxies are there in this universe anyways? No one will ever know. And within this speck of dust called Earth, New York City is a speck of a speck of dust on this planet. And among the 8 million or so people currently inhabiting this city, I am one mini speck of a speck of a speck of dust amongst many.
As Sadhguru so popularly said in his YouTube videos, we human beings are mere pop-ups in this universe. We pop in and then we pop out just like that. Yes, we all have our own individual special stories to tell. And yes, our lives all matter of course. And we have every right to pursue whatever it is we want to pursue and do whatever it is that we are passionate about in this world. And if we look closely, there are so many things that can make our lives fulfilling and filled with unbridled passion and purpose.
It's just that no matter how special or unique or important we think we all are, we are still simply mere pop-ups. Just one of billions of people on this planet trying to make a name for themselves and trying their best to find meaning and happiness in their own individual lives. And to a certain extent, I find that kind of comforting. To know that I’m not alone on this planet. And that I am just one of many trying to tell my own story and trying to live my life to the best of my abilities.
It's easier said than done sometimes. We all have egos to a certain extent, and we of course like to know that we all matter in this world and that we all have some sort of given purpose to strive for. And that’s all fine and dandy. We all of course matter. We are human beings and all human beings matter.
It’s just that when you zoom out further on a country-level scale, a planet-level scale, or a universal-level scale, how much do we really “matter” in general? How important really are all our perceived problems in this world? Whether we coin them big or small issues.
It’s all in the mind and we all like to think that our issues and our problems are incomprehensibly big. That nobody will understand the issues that we are going through. Honestly, I don’t think most people care much about other people’s issues. Because they are too busy worrying about their own lives. About paying their electric and utility bills. About putting food on the table for their families. About taking care of their parents’ or their partner’s or their children’s health and well-being.
Nobody has it that easy in this world. We’d like to think that just because somebody is rich or financially wealthy, that all their problems are just miraculously solved and can fall along the wayside. That somehow, they are living a perfect dream life simply because they have a larger number in a bank account somewhere. Of course, that is not true. Everyone struggles to a certain extent. Everyone has their own problems and issues that they need to deal with.
On a micro-scale, these problems can mean the world to them. But on a macro or on a worldly scale, exactly how big do these problems exactly move the needle in terms of making a big impact on the world or the universe? If you’re late picking up your kid at the soccer game, will that bring the universe to its knees? Will that cripple an entire country’s economy?
Those are questions that I think we need to ask ourselves. Exactly how big are our problems on a macro scale if we zoom out? How does it affect our community, our city, our country, our world?
It probably does move the needle a little bit but given that we are all just pop-ups in this world, it probably doesn’t make much of a difference in the long run. And I say that not with pessimism or hate, I say it with a bit of relief. I say it knowing that as pop-ups, we kind of have the freedom to do whatever it is that we please without needing to worry how well or badly it will affect the world.
I am a strong proponent and believer of good habits. And I do believe that good micro-habits can leave a lasting and fulfilling impact on one’s own life. But I’m also saying that sometimes we need to zoom out our perspective to realize that our worries and our achievements may mean the world to us, but it may not mean a lick to someone else. It might sound like a harsh truth, but I think there is some peace that we can all dig up from that realization as well.