Since recorded history, humans have always thought that they were at the center of the universe. Even during the early days of astronomy and space exploration, that thought continued. It’s not hard to see why. With our limited knowledge of the universe and a lack of information telling us otherwise, why wouldn’t we be the center of the universe?
The Universe Doesn’t Revolve Around Us
Truth is, we’re nowhere near the “center” of the universe. Our planet, sun, or even galaxy isn’t the center of the known universe because the center doesn’t exist.
There is no true center of the universe. Scientists believe that the universe first came to be with the Big Bang, which happened around 13.7 billion years ago. This cosmic event started a chain reaction that led to our existence. However, it’s not the traditional explosion that many people imagine when they think of the Big Bang.
With a normal explosion, there’s always a single center point. It’s the detonation point in which the explosion can burst out. This is not how the Big Bang happened. During this cosmic event, the universe was created all at once. However, it was very compact and tiny. It then started to gradually expand and grow. That growth is still happening today, which is why the universe is referred to as “infinite.”
Even still, the growth is not from a central point. Instead, every spot in the universe began to expand in all directions, pushing everything away from each other at the same rate. You can perform a simple experiment to illustrate this point.
Take a standard deflated rubber balloon. Before you blow it up, draw some dots at various points on the balloon. Those dots will represent points in the universe. You can view them as galaxies or stars. Now, blow up the balloon. What happens to the dots? They get larger and move farther and farther away from each other as the balloon expands. There’s no single point of origin for that balloon. It simply expands at all points to get bigger. That’s how the universe is.
Because there is no point of origin in the universe, there can’t be a center. The universe continues to get bigger and celestial bodies move farther apart as time goes on. Our universe is a complex thing. It didn’t begin by traditional means and will never have a fixed center to find.