PurposeCity
PurposeCity

Episode · 1 month ago

11: Compassion, Community, and the Universe

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Dr. Hugh Ross discusses the biological need for humans to be in a community and the adverse effects of isolation.

He also explains how being compassionate and helping others has been scientifically proven to reduce pain levels in patients.

Lastly, he gives fascinating facts of how improbable it should be to have life on our planet, emphasizing the value of every life.

Astrophysicist Hugh Ross, founder and president of Reasons to Believe, holds a degree in physics from the University of British Columbia and a Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of Toronto. His books include Weathering Climate Change, The Creator and the Cosmos, and Improbable Planet. Hugh has also spoken on hundreds of university campuses as well as at conferences and churches around the world. reasons.org 

PurposeCity is presented by Executive Wealth Management and exemplifies our core values of trust, community, and compassion. PurposeCity can be found on all major podcast platforms.

Welcome to publicity stories ofhumanity in action sponsored by executive wealth management. Yes, onpurpose city, do not necessarily reflect an endorsement on executivewealth management. Dr Ross, thanks for being here, it's my pleasure yeah. How are youholding up under the covil situation in the last year and a half or so here in La County, we're still undervery severe lock down, because you have very high case load, so we have to wearmasks, but I'm fully vaccinated, so I'm getting around even traveling onaircraft yeah and you you travel and used to travel and speak a lot. Do youget a lot of writing done during this time? Oh Yeah. I definitely going to have togive coved nineteen and acknowledge him at my next book. All right, that's funny! Okay! So obviously youyou know, I was looking for things as you know, to to discuss and on reasonsto believe, just you alone on your blog, give over three hundred blog articles on Amazon. It shows you have over. Idon't know it's about twenty two dozen books, or at least the books, you'vewritten or you're a part of have coauthored or been a part of thewriting and and on reasons to believe. If you type in Hu Ros, you get about ahundred resources and the amount of things to talk about withyou is so enormous. But I'm glad to know that I picked atleast one or two that you haven't talked about before. Is that right? Oh, yes, you're the first real yeah, soit's kind of a big word, but all truism. So I learned that from your blogactually but falling under helping others. I was really amazed to findthat it could be a pain reliever. So first, what is a definition of altruism?It's doing good things for other too, without the expectation of any reward,and you know we do see some altruistic behavior amongst non human animals, butwith unique to humans is that we do good things for other people at norelationship to US whatsoever of people in foreign countries, for example, forthere is absolutely no possibility that they could ever pay us back right, thenwhat is the opposite of all truism, spite right and again, that's what forhumans are unique, were the only spiteful species where we do harm toother people out where it's actually going to harm ourselves to do it beinggood examples of that would be at on Hitler, and Joseph Stallard did a lotof harm to their own citizens at great harm to themselves. So really I found it interesting. Someof the quotes you had an article I'll get to one of them, but altruism,really is the best. We can be right, the most noble and then spite is reallythe worst we can be because in either case it has nothing no benefit forourselves. So if you're hurting somebody ormanipulating somebody- and it's not even benefiting you- which you know, isan ethical situation in itself- that's that's like a level level of bad right yeah I mean that's a real definition ofhate for you're, so atful that you harm other, be other people even and it'sgoing to do damage yourself right. I like that. You quoted Frenchphilosopher Theologian Blaze, Pascal if I got his name rightfrom the sixteen hundreds calling us...

...the most noble and wretched yes of creatures yeah, we manifest the two extremes right:extreme good and extremely evil, so animal that makes us different thananimals right, because animals can't express that high level of nobility,nor that malice right, that's correct, wow. So so what are the studies thatshow? What is the pain, reliever aspect of this? Or what does it do to us if weare on the good side of helping people as a series of experiments done byscientists in China, how where they took volunteers and they subjected themto painful experiences? And in one case, they noticed that those individuals,those volunteers, are doing altruistic acts experienced significantly lesspain than those who did not. So they contrast the people who are doingactual harm to others, those who are neutral and those were all truistic,and only in the altruistic case did you see a significant drop in pain andobvious application. This could really work. I mean they did an experiment oncancer patients, and so one group of cancer patients were helping othercancer patients. The other group are just simply helping themselves and, aslike the group that was helping other cancer patients with big drop and painlevels, and you know we could do quite well in our health industry that wecould just lower the level of medication we have to give to peoplefor pain and what this is demonstrating is, instead of taking a pain, relieverpill, do an altruistic act, help two people and call me in the morning exactly right, so switch topics a little bit. I alsowas interested in this when you wrote about it's, not good,you know for us to be alone. So really, it's not good to be a hermit right right. There's been a lot of studiesdone by scientists. The damage that happens when you have long periodswhere you're cut off from other human games but was interesting about thisset of studies, is that they show that even short periods of social isolation,a AP damaging consequences, and, by short, I mean a single day. So if yougo a single day without social contact of the human beings, it does have. I mean what they noticeas it affects the brain. A brain doesn't function as well. If youisolate yourself even for twenty four hours, so it's really making the pointevery day bring some social contact in your life every day. Do a good deed foranother human being. It's going to help you and you know you work for afinancial company. A lot of research is showing that you know people whoactually will donate some of their money for an alteris tic cause, ratherthan just simply putting in their bank they're, going to feel better aboutthemselves and they're, probably going to make wiser decisions about how toinvest their money right. Interesting specifically, what did they? How didthey examine? How did they get? They studied Zebra finch right right, yeah, because they wanted toactually examine what was going on in the brain and to do that they actuallyneeded to do surgery on the brains, and they felt now we're not going to dothat in humans, and so they use zebra ventures as a proxy CA. Zebra finchesare birds that are highly social, just like we human beings. Moreover, thebrain structure of these birds is quite similar to the brain structure of humanbeing, so is a good proxy, and so they...

...would take these finches and just havethem not have contact wherever Zep finches for twenty four hour periodcompared that with those that did and then they operated on the brains andthat they were able to discern yes, her serious disruption and brain functionand brain gene expression for those Zebre finches that were alone just fora twelve hour period, so even twelve hours can have consequences, and soit's not just people who are put into you know isolation for weeks and monthson end at experienced damage gave in short term, and I think this isapplications for prison system is that you know lies, probably not good toisolate the prisoners even for a short period. We need to find some other wayto keep them safe, but likewise for the rest of the human population. It'simportant that we make sure we have regular social contact. I mean where Iwork. I tell our employees instead of just calling one another phone go totheir office. You have that face of face contact. You need the exerciseanyway, but it's also going to help your brain function right and dosomething for them. Do some altruism to some old trousom form yeah. That way,you really benefit that's right and it all goes together. Doesn't it you canhave all truism without community or interaction with people? So if you canfit in your daily life, just involving yourself with people andbeing kind where it doesn't necessarily benefit yourself as a way of life?Actually I'm going to get philosophical here, Dr Ross, then it ceases to be alltruism, because if you have that knowledge, you know it's going to helpyou right, but yeah. There's that aspect- and Itell our employees, like you, know, being all truistic getting some socialinteraction, your life you're going to be able to think for it more logicallyand that's what we must e were paying you to do. That's right, I used tothink the thinkers, so you know I don't think of this wasting time. This isactually going to improve your productivity here for sure now we can't have you on and not talkabout something involving Astro physis at your Canadian right and I do citizen I've been living herein the US for for decades, I'm still at Canadian citizen Shit, okay, just ajust a minute or two about I mean it's a vast career to say in aminute or two, but a little bit about your background. How do you get towhere you're to what you're involved? In now balls born, raised and educated inCanada? I got fascinated by astronomy was seven years of age. The new atastrophysics would be my future career from a Jane onwards. I was just reallyfocused on studying astronomy and physics, all throughout my growing upyears, and I was at age sixteen I been spent a year studying cosmology andrealized a universe at a beginning, and that's when I went on a quest of findthe COSMA beginner and had no idea where to look, but I tried to find thatcosmic beginner and the writings of the great philosopher, especially ManuelConn, ready to cart and finance, began to go through the world's holy booksand a SA studying a Gideon Bible was given to me in a public school, and Irealized this is a book that has a message it's completely compatible, butI understand through astrophysics it even predicted big bang, cosmology, andso I was at age nineteen I became a Christian, and now I had of anorganization how ere we have a group of research scientists that study thediscoveries and the frontiers as...

...scientific research to demonstrate themore we learn about nature and science. The more evidence were fine for thesupernatural handiwork of the Creator, of the universe and reasons to believeit's been around what thirty five years or so here in her thirty six year, right nowa yeah. So I think this was a few books agoright, maybe two thousand and sixteen or so the improbable planet, that's correct. So it is I'm gonna. You know it's a large topic when I tryto put it in this kind of framework of every day, there's about sity ninemillion people et at McDonald's. That doesn't make mefeel like a very valuable customer. Frankly, and then I don't know, youknow a lot about astronomy, but I do know that it's said by otherastronomers that there are enough stars or equal to or maybe it maybe I'm sure you would knoweight or ten times. The amount of sand on earth is the amount of stars outthere in the universe. So that makes me feel like a very smallinsignificant person. But if I look at the facts that youbring out in the improbable planet, it's not so much. It seems like every.Even if there's billions of people, it seems to come to conclusion that eachone of us has value with the odds of us even having life on this planet. Yeah I mean we look at the vast and ofthe universe, but what we recognize as it make the universe, the tiniest bitless massive and in the first four minutes after thecosmic creation event, so little hydrogen ill be fused in the humianfuture stars will not make any elements heavier than helium. He got a universewith no carbon, no oxygen and no nitrogen, and it goes the other way itmakes you of her slightly more massive than it is then future stars rapidly convert allthat hydrogen to helium into elements as heavy as iron or heavier, but onceagain he ended up with a universe, but no carpet no oxygen, no nitrogen and noposite only for life. In other words, if you want one planet in which lightcan exist, he need a universe that has a trillion trillion stars in it. Thoseclean, trian stars make up just a quarter per cent of all the stuff ofthe universe. Moreover, the universe has to be Persici the size that it is.We live in an expanded universe, but is got to expand to a certain size beforeadvance life is possible. Every feature. The universe we observe must be finetuned to make our existence possible, and I got a book on the OAT next yearcalled design to the core. For I say we live in a unique super galaxyclusterthat looks like no other Galaxy Super Gallanty, clustered universe, and yet it alone has the designfeatures to make light possible, and we live in the only galaxy cluster that asthe features of permits or existence, the only galaxy grew two underdifferent features of her milky. Waite Galaxy must be flying tune to make theexistence of US human beings possible and there's only one local withit, ourMilky Way Galaxy for existence as possible and were orbiting the onlystar for sixty years. We astronomers have been trying to find a star thatsufficiently like our son, that it could be a candidate to have advancelife on a planet orbiting. It lots of stars are twins of one another,but our star of the sun we yet define and adequate twin, and likewise theplanets Youn we've now found almost fivethousand planets beyond our solar system and my peers anticipated we'dfind a bunch that were just like the...

...planets in a solar system, ball. Fivethousand excellent planets later we've yet to find a single planet, that'slike any one of the eight planets in our solar system, and it led to anamazing discovery. Every planet or solar system must be fine tune to makeevents like possible here and planet earth. A couple of months from nowwe're going to be celebrating Thanksgiving. I don't know what it'slike for your family, but what we pray we're going to be thanking God forMercury for Venus for Uranus and Neptune, because there be noThanksgiving dinner that those planets weren't exactly the way they are rightand moral in the five asteroid belts that are in our solar system have to befine to to make Turkey possible on your Thanksgiving on table. We kind of pushpluto out of the family, though didn't we, he doesn't show up at Thanksgivinganymore, yeah yeah. What? If, if your boss saysyou've been Pluto, that's not a good thing! That means you've been demoted, but the problem was when we discoveredPluto back in one thousand. Nine hundred and thirty its size was greatlyoverestimated. We've now found asteroids that are bigger than Pluto,so we have two choices: either for Oliver School children to memorize thenames of forty planets or we do Montuno. So we demoted Pluto, poor, Pluto, soyeah. So you know and your general educationthrough high school. You learn that life sustainable on earth by thegravity of the moon and, of course the sun is veryimportant, but you add the element of the other planets being important tolife on earth. And yes, so how is you reference? Explain that a little more well, for example, it's important thatour plan at birth get a just great delivery of comets and asteroids ofjust the right size and just the right rate and the gas giant planet, Jupiter,Saturn, Uranus and nectunt. They act as gravitational shields to ensure wedon't get bombarded too heavily, but also ensure we don't get bompart toolightly, and to make that work, you need to have a planet, a massiveJupiter that disante is from the Earth how where it has most of the mass ofthe planets in the solar system, and then the second shield needs to be thesecond most massive planet and it needs to be more distant than Jupiter thatsadder and then you also need the assistance of two smaller gas giantplanets and at Uranus and Neptune, but those four gas giant planets generateorbital men, motion residences, but the smaller rocky planets Mars and Venus.Mercury, and even our moon, play a role and breaking up. Those me motion,residences to pe, for God of the ear, has not disturbed in any substantialway, literally every planet that plays a role and even our moon. That plays arole in maintaining the stable structure of our solar system andrecently, we've just discovered is a few weeks ago that I owe the moonformed as a result of two rocky planets colliding with one another. For Pro toearth and another rocky planet, Thea, and so the moon began much closer tothe earth than it is right now and because it formed as a result of thiscollision, even it started off hot, and so the earning moon had a liquid ironcore and because it started so close to the earth. The titled Forces of theEarth circulated that liquid iron causing a Dynamo N A magnetic field,and it wasn't for the combination of...

...the Moon's magnetic field and the Earthmagnetic field. The early son would have spluttered away all of ouratmosphere and all of our ocean, and so the mass of the moon, the heat that ithad torn its proximity to the earth, all must be fine to so we have theatmosphere in the ocean. We need for our existence to day. Is there a mathematical number put tothat of of what it all these things lining up to have life on earth? Yes, I mean you'll, find it reasons:DOT, Ord, a fine tuning, a three hundred page compendio that I'vecomposed it's all free. You can download it, but at les eight hundredand fifty features of our solar system or galaxy, that must be fine tuned forexistence to be here and a bottom line. Probability Beston one chance and tento the One Thousand and fiftieth power that you're going to find anotherplanet anywhere in the entirety of the universe. That's going to add thenecessary conditions and to put that in context, that's ruhly equivalent to youwinning the California lottery a hundred and fifty consecutive times foryou by just one ticket each time or the mathematician friend of mine told me isno different than the probability of winning the lottery a hundred fifty consecond of times, for we don't buy any tickets at all yeah, it's a utterlyremote probability. So that number is basically zero. It's almost zero right! Well, you got a hundred one thousandand tyers after the one yeah again, the number of protons and neutrons in theentire universe is only ten to the seventy nine. So, as is far more remotethat you blindfolded could pick up especially Mark Proton from all thequadrillions and quadrillions and quadrillions and quadrillions et ce areprotons in the entire universe. By a wide margin, you don't strike meas a kind of guy that watch a movie like dumb and Dumber, but reminds me ofJim Carey. WHO's is a lady friend basically GIVES THEM SORT OF VATscenario of the chances they have to be together, and he says so that you say: There's a chance yeah a that was one on a million. Hesays. Ah, there's a Champdoce Park lottery that many consecutive times. Iwouldn't put any money on it, that's right! So likewise, I wouldn't put anymoney in the fact that our planet, in our mood art here by strictly naturalmeans yeah somebody had be, and those are thingswithin the universe. What about on earth? You talked about a living in theice age period. How that was important. I get that right. Yes, you've got that right, I mean that's.One of the unique features are a planet ears is that we have an ice age cycleand that requires the enormous number of factors of be fine tune. But withoutthat ice age cycle it would not be possible that millions of people on theEarth at one time enjoying a high technology, a standard of living andwhat's really remarkable, is the ice age cycle is characterized by extremeclimate instability. I mean we've been in a IAH cycle for the past two point:six million years, but only over the past nine thousand years have we hadextreme climate stability, and I mention in my book and Problem TlPlanet how you have to have a three really bag. Pastori collisions. Pardonme in my book weathering climate change and at a hit the earth at just theright time, just the right place in concert with the Ice Age cycle to setup this amazingly stable period of...

Climata Ility, and so it's not anaccident that we have this climate stability as not an accident that welive in an ice age cycle that provides us with all the resources we need tofeed billions of human beings right yeah. It's I mean it's mind, blowing information.I don't I got to ask you so for Simpleton like me, I can hear all thenumbers and you know I can't rap my mind around it as a NASTRAND. You ever really wrapyour mind around how large the universe is or how small the odds are that wecould have life on this planet. Do you ever really grasp it, or is itstill just kind of like numbers out there? You know? Well, I deal with big numbers all thetime, so it's a little bit easier for me to to grass US nevertheless I'llconfess to you it's mind: Bogging Forr, all of us in astrophysics. The numbersare just incredible, but yeah we deal with big stuck all the time, so it's a little easier for us tocomprehend the significant it is all right. Well, I've enjoyed thisconversation. I can't thank you enough for being on and for your life's work. Not only is you know, have you providedjust a plethora of materials for people and all the speaking you've done aroundthe world and the writing you're just a kind man. So I appreciate you- and I appreciateyour time. Thank you doctor us. Are you very welcome and the purpose itypodcast stores, O humanity? Action is presented by executive wealthmanagement and it exemplifies our core values of trust, community andcompassion. We are in a period of time of intensein continuous change. People who want to build wealth need to know that aninvestment philosophy and process is critical to any long term investmentstrategy, so clients when they're, looking at their portfolios and they're,seeing the markets move in a very negative fashion or even in a positivefashion, and we want to make sure that we're taking advantage of what themarket of doing so we're building we're defending them were advancing thatstrategy through compassionate growth. We build defend in advance. That is thefounding principle of our investment philosophy, clients, knowing that theycan be up at one level of risk and very gradually reduced, as on a nonemotional analysis, is mathematically driving. It is based on a a system thatis built for a very large community. Our team is built up with not just acouple advisers with their assistance like you'll see in a lot of offices. Wehave our investment team here, an investment policy committee. We haveour operations department here we have our compliance department. Here we havea technology department here which allows our advisors to have more directaccess which allows them to not have to jump through. As many hoops when thatjust leads to a more efficient clint experience, I wanted to be part of acompany that had and fostered that team work that had regular meetings like thecase studies, the collaboration, the practice management- I saw a ton ofvalue in that being part of a team is crucial for me. I came from almosttwenty years in the banking channel. Thinking about why I came here wasspecifically to do with the way that they treat the employees as family. Wehave a great culture here. That's one of the things I really take pride in.It is about chemistry. You need people to want to be here. The fact that we'retraded so well allows me to focus and other things for our clients and how Ican help them, and what I really found special about this place was that theemphasis on building relationships- and that is something that I've carriedinto my practice as an advisor. I want to build that plan and then obviouslyallow us to defend it, but ultimately...

...is that peace of mind that we're inHelen advance going forward, I'm the partner to the investor. With insidethe firm, I really enjoy answering clients, questions a lot of our clientslike to read thoroughly through our disclosure documents, and they have alot of excellent questions and part of my job is to ensure that the client isinformed and has access to that information. So, if there's ever a timewhere a client has a question and if they just want to give me a call, theyare always welcome to do that. We communicate with our clients. We arefollowing up with clients when they ask questions, we want to make sure we'reproactive and doing that, and that's part of our strategy of building anddefending an advancing or our relationship. I've been working forexecutive, both management for over ten years. I love the people that I workwith with great clients, our clients trust us. We care about our clients,building report folio and your retirement, defending it when it needsto be defended in difficult times and advancing it when things turn build,defend, advance schedule, an appointment to day and meet with anexecutive Welt Management Adviser to learn how we can build defend inadvance. You are investment future. I.

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