My family, like many families, has it’s own way of saying things, inside jokes etc. One of them is we started saying “danke shoen” (pronounced donka shane) (thank you very much in german) for “thank you”, which was then turned into “donkey shins”, which was then shortened to “donkeys”.
So in our household “donkeys” meant thank you. Then one day we see the movie “two mules for sister sarah” (clint eastwood movie) and about a week later my sister (whose name is sarah) hands me something and I thank her by saying “two mules for sister sarah”.
When I think of all the things that had to happen for that joke to be possible and make any sense, all the events in the development of the english language, the german language, the movie had to be made, it had to have that plot, my sister had to have that name, the word sister had to also mean “nun” (which it’s referring to in the movie), and to top it all off I have to have a weird-ass family that says “donkeys” instead of thank you.
When you think about it the odds of that joke coming into existence are like the odds of winning the lottery ten times in a row. The setup for the joke was thousands of years in the making.
So I have two possible ways to interpret this – 1) the creationist/intelligent design perspective – the odds are so staggeringly unlikely of my joke ever occurring that the universe in it’s entirety must have been designed with my joke in mind, my joke being the pinnacle and purpose of human existence (a bit arrogant). Or 2) the universe is a complex tapestry of cause and effect where billions of events are perpetually coinciding to make things like this happen – my joke is not any more special than any joke or any movie or art form or organism or meaningful turn of events, that the universe is constantly churning things out like this.
So which is more likely?
We perceive the world as though we are all at the center of our own universes – but that is a trick of the mind and the senses. In reality the universe has no center and we are the focal point of our own consciousness, not of the events surrounding us.