Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Quarter A Century

I am twenty five years old now. Turned 25 around the "ides of July". Turning twenty five had a sort-of -sobering effect on yours truly. It got me into thinking about Human timescales. Our lives are not mere drops in the ocean. Here is why.

Twenty of me and you have the Mughal Empire. Forty of me and you have the Christian Dark Ages - full with plagues and little ice ages and everything. Sixty of me, you have Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him) fighting his wars. Eighty of me, and you have Jesus Christ - allegedly perishing for the sins of one and all. Hundred of me and you have the glorious kingdoms of ancient India and China. You have Buddha sitting under a tree in what is now Laloo-land. You have Asterix and Obelix plundering the Romans. You have Aristote and Plato commiting blunders. You have Pythagoras talking about hypotenuses. Two Hundred of me and you have the Egyptians and Chinese starting out and the Indians (some contend) on song.

As a matter of fact, just a hundred and twenty of my lives could have fit into the entire Egyptian empire. A hundred and twenty is not much - why, I see a hundred and twenty people all the time. There were classes in IIT which had 250 students. (Ah, the lovely farce that is IIT education!).

Half a billion of me, and you have the big bang. Considering that the world has SIX billion people, it is intriguing (though absolutely useless) to note that the cumulative age of all humans on the planet right now exceeds the age of the universe. On a more somber note, the cumulative age of all Indians right now exceeds that of the universe by a factor of roughly two. Now, that is scary.

I am just 25 right now. Current longevity estimates would put my life at around 75 years at least - assuming something is done to control sphericity of my own self. Utterly sobering to think that only forty of me would be sufficient to fill the entire 3000 years of the Egyptian empire.

Considering that the median age of India is 24 right now, I must also realize that I am one of the older Indians on the planet right now. It's all downhill from here, eh?

If you're not mesmerized by these statistics, all that means is that you grasp human timescales much better than I do right now. Kudos to you.

1 comment:

unicorn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.