History of the World As We Know It

Chapter 1: Bang

Once upon a time there was a big bang.  Then stuff happened in a hurry. Later, stuff happened more slowly, but it kept happening for a long time. Eventually the stuff became heavier and stuck together to form stars and planets. One planet had a lot of water and organic compounds.


Chapter 2: Squish

After quite a while, the organic compounds on this planet made a bunch of autocatalytic sets in the water.  These sets exhibited a stable regenerative pattern called life.  After quite another while, there were lots of types of life.


Chapter 3: Aha

Æons later, between extinction events, a clever ape species developed a hereditary neurological disorder called sapience.  The species was eventually named after the disorder.


Chapter 4: Eden

One day the First Man said, “This world is too hostile.  Everything wants to bite me or sting me or eat me.  It rains when I don’t want it to and doesn’t rain when I do want it to.  It’s too cold in the winter and too hot in the summer.  I wish I could have an easier time getting everything I want when I want it.”

The First Woman said, “Man, you can’t appreciate this beautiful world unless you accept the way things are. Sometimes you eat, sometimes you’re food. Get used to it.”

The First Priest thought to himself, “Hmm…” and said, “Don’t listen to Her, Man, it is right and proper for you to have Dominion over the Beasts. It is your Destiny. God ordains it.”

“Who is God?” asked the First Man.

The First Priest said, “Come with me, and I’ll explain.”


Chapter 5: Civilisation

A few thousand years later, Man had achieved Dominion over the Beasts (mainly by killing them all) and control of His environment (mainly by turning it into asphalt and concrete). His fellow Men, however, did their best to kill Him and take His possessions, mainly because the Priests said they should. It was still too hot or too cold by turns and the rain and wind still came at inconvenient times. He still had a hard time getting what He wanted when He wanted it, mainly because He wanted silly things because other Men wanted them. He yearned for the Good Old Days when life was simpler and all He had to worry about was finding food and not being eaten.


Chapter 6: Bang

Pretty soon Man arranged His own extinction event.


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