A tongue-in-cheek look at Douglas Adams’ story, and how he probably didn’t mean the ‘alternative facts‘ I’m about to suggest.
When Ford Prefect, a native of the planet Betelgeuse rescues his earthling friend Arthur Dent from the total destruction of planet Earth, he takes him on a journey through the universe, some might say through creation. They travel in both space and time and amongst their adventures, they witness the end of the universe. But they are fine after it so don’t worry.
There are numerous prophecies that foretell the end of all things, like Adams’ end of the universe. Unlike Adams’ tale, most do not happen to have a restaurant where you can watch it. The Bible’s book of Revelation tells of a new heaven and a new earth, and was written at a time when the rest of the universe was not known to exist. So what if it simply encompassed all that was known and we interpret as all that is known now then there goes the universe, to be replaced by ….. a new universe?
The universe, or creation, has been created by an ultimate intelligence. Some might say a god is the ultimate intelligence. Of course in our world today lots of people do not believe in God, though they may have their own private little god/s (idols). That doesn’t, of course, stop them wondering about the answer to life, or as in The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, “life the universe and everything”. As I write this, we know the answer to “life the universe and everything”, it’s 42. The super mega computer Deep Thought told us it is 42.
Well, as we are not in the story, we haven’t got a computer that powerful yet but we are working on it. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is being used in more and more applications. Sooner or later someone is going to ask it, not necessarily in exactly the same words, what is the answer to “life the universe and everything”. The worst aspect of this is that we will believe the answer the AI gives us. A bit of prophecy in Adam’s tale?
Ultimately, at the conclusion we discover that planet Earth, which we are blissfully, ignorantly living on is in fact a giant, organic computer. It has been designed by the ultimate intelligence not to answer the question of “life the universe and everything” but to determine the actual question. We have been place here on this insignificant that no one else knows about as subjects in a great experiment.
Well you have to admit, if we believe in any kind of ultimate intelligence, it is at least a possibility, no matter how unlikely that we are just experimental animals in a controlled environment..
“In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot
of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move.”