How many atoms are there in the universe? If this number is larger than the amount of neurons that was in Albert Einstein's brain, then what is the point of ever truly understanding the universe?

1 Answer
Oct 13, 2016

The number of atoms in the universe is incredibly large, the number of neurons in Albert Einsteins brain is, while large, considerably smaller.


Einstein's mind was brilliant, but was almost certainly incapable of "truly understanding" the universe is any scientific way - as there is simply too much to ever learn or discover in a single lifetime. However, we discover and learn as a species so that our posterity can live more comfortably and in turn expand the size of human knowledge further.

Einstein did leave us with a symbolic representation of the growing human knowledge. Imagine that we live in darkness and as we learn things, light expands from where we stand. But the edges of that light are still dark, so we learn more about the universe and discover new and innovative things, expanding the circle of knowledge.

The issue is that as we learn more and increase the size of the circle, we discover more things that we do not understand - as the circumference of the circle increases as the radius does. So as we learn new things we do understand, we discover more things we don't.