From a distance, our Earth is a perfect sphere—unchangeable, serene, radiant in the light of the merciful sun, displaying ever-changing patterns of ethereal clouds dancing ghost-like over the magnificent blue and green.
Get close, and you’ll see lines in the Earth’s crust. Roads and cities and marvelous machines, clear traces of the planet’s inhabitants and a testament to their will and their strength. Surely we have come a long way between the amoeba stage and where we are today, masters of technology and newborn travelers among the stars.
Long ago, we emerged into this world to an existence of blood and iron. Now look at us. We’re little gods.
Zoom further in. Penetrate the atmosphere. Hurtle down until you can glimpse the inhabitants of planet Tellus. Hover above them long enough, and with patient eyes you will see them in groups go about their daily lives, from sunrise to sunset, from cradle to grave. You will see the patterns of group behavior at its best and its worst. For every monument to our love and ingenuity, for every book written and kind deed done, there’s a devastating war that wipes away buildings and beauty and life. Like all gods, we both create and destroy.
Let’s go even further down. Masses turn into entities. The relatively simple group dynamics and herd mentality evaporates slightly, leaving us finally to see the individual in all its splendor and confusion. The individual is an infinitely complex and unpredictable creature. Scared and alone, it tries to navigate in a world of painful choices and seemingly random incidents. In a whole lifetime of bliss and misery, of sticks and carrots, the individual human being desperately clings to the idea that it is unique. And that is its triumph and its terrible flaw.
Yes, my friends, we’re close enough now to see the humans and their individual beauty. We’ve zoomed all the way in. Behold the godliness and glory of man left to his own! Behold the individual!