Defin­ing the prob­lem of pur­pose

Cosmos - - Spectrum - Pen­guin Ran­dom House (2017) RRP $ 32.99 Paper­back

THE ODDS, THERE­FORE, are neg­li­gi­ble that we live in the ori­gin uni­verse, and con­sid­er­able that we are quite a few steps down the lay­ers of re­al­ity. Every­thing you know, every­thing you have ever seen or ex­pe­ri­enced, is prob­a­bly not what it ap­pears to be. The most alarm­ing no­tion is that some­one – or ev­ery­one – you know might be an avatar of some­one a level up; they know that you’re a game piece, that you’re in­vented and they are real. Per­haps that ex­plains your sense of un­ful­filled po­ten­tial: you truly are in­com­plete, a semi-au­ton­o­mous re­flec­tion of some­thing vast. And yet, if so, what does that say about those vast ones be­yond? Are they just repli­cat­ing a truth they se­cretly recog­nise about them­selves? Rus­sian dolls, one in­side the other, un­til the small­est doll em­braces the out­er­most and every­thing be­gins again? Who re­ally in­hab­its whom, and who is in con­trol?

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