I happened upon an online discussion a while back that really got me to thinking about time, and our place within the spectrum of things. There were all sorts of interesting tidbits thrown about in that discussion, and here are a few that really stuck with me:
- Orville Wright of the Wright Brothers died in 1948. Neal Armstrong was born in 1930. That means that from 1930-1948, the first man to fly and the first man to walk on the moon were alive at the same time.
- Men who fought in WWII had grandpas who fought in the Civil War. Men who fought in the Civil War had grandpas who fought in the the Revolutionary War.
- Oxford University predates the formation of the Aztec Empire by more than a century. Oxford was founded in the mid-twelfth century, and the Aztecs formed around 1300.
- I've mentioned this one before, and it still blows my mind: Cleopatra lived closer in time to the moon landings than she did to the building of the great pyramids.
- More time passed between Tyrannosaurs Rex and Stegosaurus than between T. Rex and now. How's that for a time span? The age of man has nothing on the age of the dinosaurs, so far.
- A lot of time, what we're taught about history is classified within an era to give it context, instead of just being presented chronologically. So much of the time we don't realize that a lot of people were born the same year, but are remembered in different time periods. For example:
- Martin Luther King Jr. and Anne Frank were born in the same year (1929)
- Marilyn Monroe and Queen Elizabeth II were both born in 1926
- Shirley Temple and Che Guevara were both born in 1928
- Pope Francis and Buddy Holly were both born in 1936
- Malcolm X and Margaret Thatcher were both born in 1925
- John F. Kennedy, CS Lewis and Aldous Huxley all died on the same day.
And to end this mind tangle, here's a final point to ponder:
You have had an ancestor alive at every point in human history. At least one of your ancestors was alive when the Great Pyramid of Giza was built. One was alive when Jesus is said to have lived. One was alive during the Crusades and the discovery of America. Think about it! Don't you wonder what they looked like? Where they lived? What their lives were like? Fascinating stuff. Seriously.
Those are my deep thoughts for a Monday. Now you get to rub your chin thoughtfully all day and think about that stuff.