Cosmologist Nancy Abram takes center stage with an ambition to thrill. “What is the biggest question faced by the human race?” she asks, as the crowd wakes up from their delayed lunch.
It would not take long for everyone’s eyes to be wide open in amazement, laughter and awe.
Abrams represents a school of scientists that are occupied with the study of the universe as a whole. And what they have found is that we - the human race - is not coincidental, random or in any way insignificant. This approach, she says, is “1700-year science.”
We are in fact central to everything. New evidence shows that we are central in form, time and space.
“Humans are made from stardust” Abrams educates, and goes on to show how we are intimately connected to the very fabrics of the universe, dark matter. As it turns out, we are also central in terms of size. From the biggest known scale of the universe to the smallest particles, the size of the human being is proportionally to be found in the middle.
Most importantly, however, we are central in time. Our generation is the first to fully understand the concept of space and time, and by that we are also handed a piece of motivation to act and solve the problems we face.
“Since the 1800s, CO2 levels in the atmosphere have doubled every 30 years. This will need to stop,” Abrams says. Now, as we understand where we belong to a pivotal moment in time, we can motivate ourselves to act in the face of our challenges.
“You can’t just tell people scary facts. They will run away,” Abrams says. “Real change comes from finding a whole new reality. This how we fall in love, how alcoholics recover. It’s change through a new identity, the real way to spiritual awakening.”
“Who we are is the sum total of our history. How far back we claim that history, is up to us. We are the first generation to realize this history. And realizing this story may be what is needed to impose the change.”
We may be the most significant generation ever to have existed, is the claim, and that in itself is an awe-inspiring thought.
But wait! There’s more!
Abrams is not entirely done yet! To make sure the message sinks in, she jumps to her laptop, microphone in hand, and burst out singing a sexy, catchy tune about corrupt scientists, lobbyists and the political malaise that sours our efforts towards creating a better earth.
It’s a wonderful, inspirational, abrupt moment - and one that triggers standing ovations as the last tunes run out. A superb performance from Abrams and a true DLD moment.
Well done, Abrams - you truly rocked the house!