Archive for July 5th, 2021

July 5, 2021


by Neil Rickert

sThere’s an old saying: “The more things change, the more they remain the same.” But it seems to me that you could also say “the more things stay the same, the more they change.” Or, as people sometimes say, “We are in a world where the only fixture is that everything is changing.”

We live in a world of change. And that’s the idea behind this post.

In the beginning

According to Genesis, it all began with the creation of the earth as a solid foundation. But, since then, Copernicus, Galileo and others have persuaded us that the earth is actually adrift, moving around the sun. Later astronomers found that the sun itself is adrift, going around the Milky Way galaxy. And the Milky Way galaxy, much like millions of other galaxies, are adrift in the cosmos.

Once we understand it, this is not particularly surprising. If you set a boat in the ocean, you expect the boat to drive with the tides, currents and winds. You can stop the drift by anchoring the boat to the continental shelf. But then we have learned that the continents are themselves drifting.

It seems that everything is adrift, and nothing is fixed.


If we look to science, we see an attempt to give us stable measurements. For example the Newtonians fixed time based on the rotation of the earth, and they fixed length based on a fixed platinum rod in Paris. But these are all somewhat arbitrary choices.

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