Physics, Earth & Space Icon Physics, Earth & Space

Earth as the “Presidential Suite” of the Universe

David Klinghoffer

In his book Unbelievable, science historian Michael Keas writes about the myth of the “Copernican demotion,” supposedly inflicted on our idea of the Earth’s special place in the universe. Keas shows that Copernicus offered, instead, a promotion. Famed chemist Marcos Eberlin takes this a step further.

Dr. Eberlin was in Seattle recently to celebrate the launch of his new book, Foresight: How the Chemistry of Life Reveals Planning and Purpose. We talked in Discovery Institute’s offices and he explained his case for recognizing our planet as occupying the “Presidential Suite of the universe.” 

“We can detect more than a thousand problems that had to be solved in advance for life to be able to develop on Earth,” he told me, illustrating the “foresight” revealed by nature in countless ways. “There’s no better place. It’s calm, beautiful, safe, long-lasting.” 

Atheist Neil deGrasse Tyson contrasts his own “cosmic perspective” with the “childish view that the universe literally and figuratively revolves around us.” But that’s a straw man. To enjoy a privileged status in the cosmos doesn’t require being at the center. In the context of a hotel, the best room in the house typically has other things going for it.

Photo credit: Joshua Fuller on Unsplash.