Imagine a universe in which 1 million human beings have constructed a high-tech civilization on Mars and are living out their lives on the Red Planet, ~225 million kilometers from Earth.
If Elon Musk’s dream comes true, this will be our universe within the next 100 years.
As early as 2040, Musk hopes to have thousands or tens of thousands of people living in a city-like colony on Mars. From there, he hopes to continue to increase the colony’s size until it exceeds one million people, at which point he believes there will be a sufficient number of people to “recreate the entire industrial base,” resulting in a sustainable civilization on Mars.
“Why in the world would he want to do that?,” you might ask.
The answer is complex and multifaceted, but here’s the short version: to ensure the long-term continuation of our species and our earthly evolutionary branch.
In this essay, I will explain in detail why Musk and a growing number of other thinkers believe that humanity must become a multi-planetary species.
But first, we need to take a bit of a detour to consider something potentially quite relevant to this discussion: the meaning of life from the perspective of the universe.