It took 800 million years for the first living cells to form on the earth. There have been multi-celled creatures on the Earth for 1 billion years and simple animals for a brief 600 million years. Mammals have been shedding hair for 200 million years and birds have existed for 150 million years. Dinosaurs gave the planet up 65 million years ago.
Human ancestors (genus Homo) first appeared 2.5 million years ago and man as he appears today made his entrance 200,000 years ago. The Christian religion has existed for 1,977 years. I have been breathing for a minuscule 58 years.
How funny is it that we give such importance to our personal existence when in the relation to cosmological time our entire species has not existed but milliseconds?
Don't even get me to talking about space and our relative size.
Being a science nut for as long as I can remember, I have always struggled to find meaning in my existence knowing my time here is short. Truly, my existence would have been nothing without love, family, and friends. We don't exist except for the impact we have on other lives.
"If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?" The philosophical extrapolation of that question is "If a person lives and no one is impacted by his/her actions, did he/she ever exist?" I say no.
As I try to find peace in my short time left I am confident that I "existed." I loved a wonderful woman who gave me my son.
I became a "Dad" for two children who likely would have grown up without one.
I heard my father say, "I'm so proud of you" and my mother look at me as if I could part the sea.
There is so much more! I have lived! I am at peace.
If there is a message in this post it would be to encourage you to tell the people who have impacted your life that they made a lot of noise when they fell in your forest.