(Drawing by Minty Sainsbury)

If you’re a crumb on a piece of toast, and you’re at the edge of the piece of toast, then your universe looks quite asymmetrical. In one direction is the crust and then a great expanse of nothingness. In the other is a glorious plain of delicious toast.

However, if you’re in the middle of the toast, then your universe looks quite symmetrical in every direction. Or at least it does if you’re zoomed out enough.

If you’re really zoomed in, then it might look different in every direction, as each crumb looks like a distinct mountain.

To us, our universe looks different in every direction. One way is the sun, another way is the centre of the Milky Way, another is the edge of the galaxy, and another is towards Andromeda.

But this asymmetry and inhomogeneity is only at the scale we intuitively think on. If we Zoom out far enough, the universe around us is actually more or less identical in every direction… which I think is a very beautiful thing.

Science Storyteller, Environmentalist, Teacher, Normal Guy // MChem (Oxon) // co-founder of AimHi

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