Living in the Matrix, or something like it

An online article caught my eye today. The title, “Is Our Universe a Fake?” was intriguing all on its own, but it dealt with a topic that was right up my alley; Science

Robert Lawrence Kuhn is creator, writer and host of “Closer to Truth,” a public television and multimedia program that features the world’s leading thinkers exploring humanity’s deepest questions.

Kuhn asks readers to think about the possibility that our world might be a simulation by another, more advanced, planet, and that our existence could be nothing more than a history lesson or a computer game.

Philosopher Nick Bostrom, director of the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford University,  said it’s like the movie “The Matrix,” except that “instead of having brains in vats that are fed by sensory inputs from a simulator, the brains themselves would also be part of the simulation. It would be one big computer program simulating everything, including human brains down to neurons and synapses.”

The article goes on to suggest that if this was the case, that our world is being simulated, we could actually learn the answer to the ultimate question (what’s life all about?) because of possible miscalculations from the programmer. Those “freaks of nature” could actually be slip-ups by the gamers.

It’s a subject that won’t sit well with some people, who may not have an open mind, but it’s  a subject I have been exploring for quite some time.

Could life really be just a game, where learning life lessons enables us to level up? Or maybe, as one scientist puts it, we could be a science project for a junior high student from another world.

No one really knows why we are here and what happens after we die. No one has ever seen God. And if there is a God, no one knows what He or She looks like, or what God’s intentions are for us. With that being said, how can anyone be 100 percent sure the scientists are wrong?

Right now, all we have is hope and faith to help us deal with life and accept what we know; we are born, we live, we die. Everything else is really anyone’s guess.

Caring for the Earth should become a way of life

Happy Earth Day! earth day 2015

Since 1970, April 22 has been a day to raise awareness, brainstorm for ways to reduce our carbon footprints, and take the necessary steps to do something, anything, to take better care of our Earth.

Is it working?

I was 7 years old when I walked in the first Earth Day parade in Cedar Rapids. My friend’s mother dove right into the recycling campaign and was thrilled at the idea of a parade. With unhinged excitement, she tied plastic bottles and tin cans to us and encouraged us to walk proudly down the middle of the street during the silent and dramatic statement of the horrible injustice we were doing to our Mother Earth.

The ’70s had ushered in an era of gas-guzzling monstrous cars and insane industrial growth, and no one seemed to care too much about the consequences of what it would do to the balance of nature. But one man did.

Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson, then a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, took action after witnessing the ravages of the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. According to, he was “inspired by the student anti-war movement, and realized that if he could infuse that energy with an emerging public consciousness about air and water pollution, it would force environmental protection onto the national political agenda.”

It wasn’t until years later that I understood the significance of that first walk. It was the beginning. And though the entire world may not understand or share the same urgency as many of us do, at least we can say we are trying. We are doing something we believe in.

Every day we are given choices that can help us do our part to raise awareness of the importance in reducing our waste, to conserve energy, to come up with better ways of doing things. Take the bus, walk or ride a bike; turn off the lights or invest in energy-saving light bulbs; plant a garden or a few trees. Reduce, reuse, recycle. Let me state that again. Reduce, reuse, recycle.

More people need to become aware of the massive impact humans are having on our beautiful Earth, and we need to learn how to take better care of her.

How am I going to celebrate Earth Day? I’m going to pick up trash in my neighborhood. It might be a little thing, but it’s some-thing.