Is the Universe aware of itself? Without us?

That’s about it. If we humans were to blink out all of a sudden, would there even BE a Universe? If so, what for?

Is there any reason to believe the universe has awareness?

…or that there has to be a purpose for its existence?

…or that it wouldn’t be there if we were not? That’s awfully egocentric of us, no?

Or that somehow we’re important enough that EVEN IF it does have a purpose, we’re in any way related to that purpose?

There is no evidence to show that the existence of humanity is anything but an accident, serendipitous for us of course, but an accident nonetheless. And based on our understanding of history, albeit imperfect, it would seem the universe got along just fine before we arrived and will continue to do so after we have departed.

Wise-ass answer; The universe isn’t here for US, it’s here for the dolphins!

Well Duuhhh!!

Chip, chip, chip. cheep, cheep, cheep. Clickclickclickclick…

But what if… our whole solar system… was, like… one tiny atom in the fingernail of some other giant being?

That’s why you should really look at your hand.

I mean, really, really look at your hand.

Thanks for the responses so far. But, when I croak, the Universe dosn’t exist for Me anymore, because I won’t exist. Guess I’m getting into deep shit here.

The universe won’t care. :wink:

All of this has happened before. All of this will happen again.

As the adherents of Bokonism say when they commit suicide, “Thus, I destroy the world.”

Thank you Dr. Albert Hofmann.

Now where is my bicycle?

And that’s why it’s moved to Great Debates.

samclem GQ moderator

OH MY GOD!! My hands are HUGE!!!

Oh wait. Was that outloud?

We are part of the universe, not separate from it, therefore the universe is aware of itself through any conscious entity which it produces.

The OP’s question appears to presume that humans are the only sentient beings in the universe. We have no reason to presume that.

Well, if we are the only sentient life, we ARE that important. “Important” and “purpose” are concepts created/imposed by sentient minds; if we are alone, then we are as important as we say we are, and the purpose of the universe is what we say it is. That of course is assuming that we could ever actually agree on either as a species.

And if we aren’t alone, not only is the question of purpose/importance more complicated, it sort of negates the OP. It does seem to assume that there’s no one but us.

Our awareness is a subset of universe. I don’t know that “the universe itself is conscious” is the best or most accurate way of expressing it (although I think it’s a far closer rendition than “the universe is not conscious”), but whatever quality the universe as a whole possesses, it’s larger than consciousness, not smaller, and consciousness is subsumed within it.

Hmmm…I recall something about a “Gaia Theory” which suggested that Earth’s ecosystem was a single, colony life form, possibly intelligent.