There’s no reason to think the staircase doesn’t extend upwards forever. The red alien a few steps above us on the staircase would see human consciousness the same way we see that of an orangutan—they might think we’re pretty impressive for an animal, but that of course we don’t actually begin to understand anything. Our most brilliant scientist would be outmatched by one of their toddlers.

from Religion for the Nonreligious (2014)

Portrait of Tim Urban

Tim Urban

Tim Urban has become one of the Internet’s most popular writers. With wry stick-figure illustrations and occasionally epic prose on everything from procrastination to artificial intelligence, Urban's blog, Wait But Why, has garnered millions of unique page views, thousands of patrons and famous fans like Elon Musk.

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