Sunday, June 17, 2012

What makes you so special?

Here are some pretty conservative estimates:

  • The Earth is one of at least 60,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (60 sextillion) planets in the universe (could be more).
  • At best, the Earth had only a one-in-30,000 chance of being habitable (and probably even greater odds, especially if we're talking about supporting intelligent life).
  • Your mother was born with about 1,500,000 eggs, only one of which became you.
  • Your father produced about 340,000,000 sperm for the occasion (and I am assuming there was more than one occasion), only one of which fertilized the egg and became you.
  • Assuming humans rule the Earth for 60 million years (a conservative estimate, as dinaosaurs dominated for more than three times that long) and the birth rate stays more or less steady, you are one of about 6,000,000,000,000,000 (6 quadrillion) people who will ever live. (That number is probably even greater.)

Given these odds, you are much more than "one in a million," you are one in at least 5,500,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (5.5 octodecillion).

Factor in an endless number of almost impossible odds that it took for you to be you, and you find that there is an infinity-to-one chance against you ever being born. And yet you are here.

You are unique and no one else has the opportunities that you have to do good in this world. In this universe, there will never be another like you. You beat the odds to be you, so be the best you that you can be.

Happy Father's Day to my dad and all of the other dads out there who do just that.

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