July 9, 2008

We are all made of stars

I'm finally catching up on my Reader and I came across this article about the LHC with Brian Cox.  I love how he explains what we are made of.  The article is long, but it's worth reading.  

The universe is everything that ever was, everything that is and everything that will be. It is the planets, stars and galaxies we see in the night sky; the Sun, Moon, Planet Earth and its inhabitants.


Look at your hand in front of you. It is an unimaginably complex structure, made of bone, skin, blood and nerves.

These in turn are made of billions of living cells, each of which is made of billions of molecules; proteins, water and countless others.

If you heated these molecules up to the temperatures of the first fleeting moments of creation, you'd see them break up into atoms, the atoms break up into protons, neutrons and electrons, and the protons and neutrons eventually dissolve away into a primordial soup of exotic particles called quarks.

In fact, at the limits of our current understanding, you would see just three particles of matter: the up quark, the down quark and the electron.

Your hand is nothing more than a complex, temporary arrangement of these three particles. The particles themselves have been around for the entire life of the universe. They are spending the blink of a cosmic eye in the pattern known as 'you'. They form part of a family of 12 particles, six quarks and six leptons, which as far as we can tell are the fundamental building blocks of everything we can see around us – the matter particles.
'The particles of your body have been around for the entire life of the universe. They are spending the blink of an eye in the pattern known as you'

Think about that for a second.  

Doesn't it make you feel connected to every other thing in the entire universe?   It's an amazing feeling to know that you have always existed and always will.  The best part is you can give kids this gift without fear and you can show them evidence that it is the truth.  If that's isn't enough to make you marvel at the world, then I don't know what is.  There is no way god creating the universe in seven days can even compare. 

This reminds me of one of Robotson's favorite songs.


  1. Thanks for the link to that article...it's great stuff!

    I've been fascinated by particle physics (and its link to cosmology) ever since hearing Carl Sagan say on "Cosmos" that "We are all made of star-stuff."

    Having my mind blown like that is one of my favorite hobbies.

  2. I've only recently discovered this stuff but I'm a recovering ignoramus :)

    Thanks for checking out my blog! I've been following yours through Planet Atheism for a while now. I really like the name.

  3. Thanks for the article link and cool song. Just the thing I needed this afternoon!

  4. Hello, wow I really loved that article, I think its very interesting and one of the most amazing truths in this world.
    I'm really thankful to you as you posted this article and also posted the "We Are All Made Of Stars" video.
    Btw, I made that video =), thank you very much for appreciate it.
    (you can check my profile to verify: http://www.youtube.com/arena2222)

    See ya! =)

  5. When I went looking for that song, I thought I'd add the original video but yours was much cooler! So thanks for making it. Gonna go check and see what else you've got up. Thanks for commenting!