a reply to: lostbook
We live on the surface of the planet Earth. During what we consider to have been its formative period, its surface has been re shaped drastically. It
started as a ball of mixed elements, over which time the heaviest of them sunk, the lightest of them rose to the surface, and formed the layer upon
which we sit. This process in and of itself was one of constant migration. The lava beneath the surface, drove the continents as we know them apart,
from what was once one massive landmass, into the familiar shapes of our nations and states, and forming the recognisable vessel of our seas and
But here is the interesting thing about human perception. As our ability to record time, to mark the passage of it, and to record what happens in a
given period with ever better understanding, improved, do did our perception of time change. To watch a documentary on geology, is to be accelerated
through billions of years, described in a short period of time, after which discoveries made in modern times are discussed in significant detail. It
is as if our understanding of our planet is affected by a time dilation effect, where the closer you get to the present day, the more data there is,
and so it feels like changes to our planet now are somehow weird, even when that documentary will rightly tell you, that our planet continues to
change even now.
The reality of the situation is this...
This is today. Today things will happen, which have not happened before. The nature of the universe, whether we are talking about at the scale of
galaxies and grand lumps of dark matter and energy, or at the scale of individual decaying isotopes, is change, flux, movement, alteration, difference
one moment to the next. Anything else is heat death, which, when all other changes and probabilities have been exhausted, may also come to pass one
day. Our perception of these slow changes, over the course of human endeavour, may make us feel like geological matters are a thing of yesteryear,
despite the occasional tectonic or volcanic reminder, but we must keep in mind that our understanding is based on only a couple of centuries of even
the barest insight into the workings of the planet on a wider scale!
Yes, sinkholes are a little concerning, but taken in context, they are merely another in a long line of events which have played out on this planet,
many of which would have been very concerning to those who were around to see them. You also have to remember that for a great deal of the lifespan of
this planet, the vast majority in fact, there has been no one around to bare first hand witness to the savage nature of its evolution into the lush,
verdant orb we know today!
If we had been alive during the period when the dinosaurs walked the Earth, or even the period before that, the headlines would have been MUCH more
terrifying than those which spawn from sinkholes opening up!