Supernovae unimaginably far away may determine whether the species of the earth are entombed under ice or suffocate to death.

Or gamma-ray bursts could cleanse mankind from the earth in an afternoon. The answer to the Fermi Paradox–”where are they?”–may be “dead.”

Or a comparatively puny and homely hiccup in the operations of our own Sun, a mere 93 million miles away, could leave the earth and its life intact, only brushing away the technology that we’ve cobwebbed over its surface.

Our lives are vulnerable, and they will remain vulnerable, and no amount of disaster planning or positive affirmation can eliminate the vulnerability. Neither can we say that individuals may die but the race goes on. The race is also mortal. Living through posterity is merely a second death sentence.

Either there is a God, or there is nothing.

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