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Carl Sagan

“From an intergalactic vantage point we would see, strewn like sea froth on the waves of space, innumerable faint, wispy tendrils of light. These are the galaxies…

A galaxy is composed of gas and dust and stars – billions upon billions of stars. Every star may be a sun to someone.

There are some hundred billion galaxies each with, on the average, a hundred billion stars.

Our overwhelming impression, even between the spiral arms, is of stars streaming by us – a vast array of exquisitely self-luminous stars, some as flimsy as a soap bubble and so large that they could contain ten thousand Suns or a trillion Earths; others the size of a small town and a hundred trillion times denser than lead. Some stars are solitary like the Sun. Most have companions. Systems are commonly double, two stars orbiting one another. But there is a continuous gradation from triple systems through loose clusters of a dozen stars to the great globular clusters, resplendent with a million suns.

In all the galaxies there are perhaps as many planets as stars, 10 to the eleventh x 10 to the eleventh = 10 to the 22nd power. That is,  ten billion trillion.”

Cosmos, pp 21-23 And while the Universe is very big. The human body is also mind-boggling. I’m sure you’ve read these things before in other  places but I enjoy typing them out:

“Human DNA is a ladder a billion nuctides long. Most possible combinations of nucleotides are nonsense: they would cause the synthesis of proteins that perform no useful function. Only an extremely limited number of nucleic acid molecules are any good for lifeforms as complicated as we. Even so, the number of useful ways of putting nucleic acids together is stupefyingly large – probably far greater than the total number of electrons and protons in the known universe.”

Ibid, pp 50-51

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