CW #13: COSMOS
what is your role?
Either from Asia or from Europe, either tall or small, either poor or rich - we all have at least one thing in common - we share the same land. Therefore, questions regarding this ground will not differ from one end to another. Most likely it happens to all of us, that on a warm summer night, at a roofless spot, we start creating thoughts about what is the matter covering our planet. Wrapped up in darkness, infinite darkness, a moon lighting up the whole area, single bright spots and sometimes even moving stars - is this true or is this the point where fantasy begins, you might ask yourself? Haven’t you? Is there another universe out there? Will we find an equivalent to our existence, or maybe another earth? Are we not alone on “this”? Thanks to many years of scientific researches concerning our atmosphere - the material body - and further the cosmos, society was able to create more valid answers. Eventually, despite all current uncertainties, the planet’s geometric shape is called “oblate spheroid”, it is part of a system called “solar-system”, in which it undergoes a chronological as well as geographical scheme and it is “kept” together by enormous forces, so-called attractions or more specific gravity. Having figured out a few things about the system we live in, we might ask ourselves: “What is my function in all this?”. WELCOME TO CW #13: COSMOS!
It all started with the “big bang”. A theory describing how the cosmos expanded from a high-density and high-temperature state to what it is now. The universe, a synonym to cosmos, describes all space and time, consists of planets, stars, galaxies and all other forms of matter and energy. The solar-system we are part of is just a very tiny element of this - as far as we know - infinite space. It is something we cannot really imagine due to our predetermined mindset. A mindset which is based on a beginning and an ending. By the time we enter the world, we know that we came to go. There is no infinity what so ever. Hence, imagining the universe, creating very clear and visual ideas might even appear to be impossible.
Cosmos derives from the Greek term kosmos (Greek: κόσμος). It was referred to as “order”, “good order” or “orderly arranged”, which is why its verb kosmein is described as “to prepare” and “to dispose” in a way of 1. arranging troops for battles, 2. establishing government or regime and later 3. the arrangement of the universe. It is said that Pythagoras was the first to refer to cosmos as to the universe by characterizing it as the “starry firmament”. Furthermore Kosmos in Ancient Greece was used to describe ornaments of a woman’s dress or particular decoration dressing the hair. Today the Greek word kosmimata (Greek: Κοσμήματα) includes not only hair decoration but all kinds of jewelry, such as earrings, necklaces and bracelets. Moreover, the term cosmetics, which has the same linguistic background, implies the decoration of face using specific products, for instance mascara. Its present meaning of “the universe” or “the world” became popular by 1848 when it was taken as the English equivalent to Humboldt’s “Kosmos” in translations to German.
When talking about cosmos we want to express something being in order, or in a specific arrangement, such as the ornaments used for dressing up women’s clothing. Or else, referring to cosmos, we are putting something in good order, meaning to find out its actual scheme or system, such as the universe and all its elements. Finally the terminology “cosmos” may describe much more than just those single elements being apart from each other. The cosmos we live in may be a system split up in smaller units, containing not only planets, stars and galaxies, but much more. The following image is used to make a more visual approach of how the whole cosmos is found in every single one of us.
The interplay of macro- and microcosmos
In reference to macrocosmos, macro from Greek makros (μακρός) meaning long as in large, we include elements such as the solar system and its characteristics as well as our planet, the earth, and its properties, for instance plants, animals and the ocean. When talking about microcosmos, micro from Greek micros (μικρός) meaning small, we imply to a specific arrangement of a smaller unit, e.g. the human body and its interplay of organs, and further even smaller the cells. Having said this, cosmos is found everywhere since it describes a particular formation and its functions. The microcosmos and the macrocosmos interact with each other. The irony is that both systems appear to work autonomous but actually depend on one another. That is why neither the macrocosmos is able to recreate its existence without making use of its living organisms, nor the microcosmos is going to persist devoid of the interaction between itself and its surroundings. All matter is in constant movement whereby it experiences continuous progress.
Another given fact is that, both macro- and microcosmos, undergo a procedure of sharing. Life “happens” because all forms of matter such as energy is changeable. Energy, found in the universe or the atmosphere is constantly dividing itself and creating a new formation. In the same manner, all living organisms split and reproduce. We share time with people around us. We share ourselves when performing a sexual act and even our cells within the fertilization process when creating new life. Thus, the essence of life is sharing.
Talking about the dependencies of the macrocosmos and the microcosmos, there is another comparison I would like to point out. Due to the strong interplay between both components, it is much likely to undergo similar experiences appearing in a different manner. Therefore, not only the way the cosmos is being reproduced is the same, but also the form of suffering. As a consequence natural catastrophes (macrocosmos) can be compared to human diseases (microcosmos) such as cancer. We are not totally divided from nature. If anything we are its own product. In that sense we should not suppress nature and its natural development but rather try to create a unity. The more we try to control and revolt our natural surrounding, the less we will be able to establish a balanced interplay. With that in mind, I want to encourage you to reestablish your position as a microcosmos within the surrounding macrocosmos. The goal is to become one with nature for the purpose of creating a good order.
Have a wonderful calendar week #13!