I Contain Multitudes
Discover the world of microbes and how they are part of our history
Microbes contribute to our lives in such a complete and complex way, that it is impossible to ignore their importance. I Contain Multitudes shows us how the animal kingdom can be wonderful when viewed from the perspective of the united and cooperative universe that it really is. Microbes make up the ecosystems present in our body, with which we live in symbiosis for our entire existence, establishing alliances which can bestow us with extraordinary powers.
Many useful tips to:
- Learn to see microbes as the builders and protectors of life.
- Understand that every individual is host to a vast microscopic zoo with which they interact their whole life.
- Recognise that the first inhabitants of the planet were microbes and that we came along millions of years later.
Microbes were the first inhabitants of this earth and it is thanks to them that we live in an oxygenised world
Animals appeared in a world that had already been teeming with microbes for billions of years.
All visible organisms, which grouped together we call "nature", were the last to arrive on Earth, which was already more than four and a half billion years old when they finally appeared. To get a better grasp of this concept, we can group it into a more relatable timeframe. Let's imagine that it is December 31st, and that the year that is about to end represents the life of the planet; using this proportion, we can say that human beings have existed for just over half an hour! Just over half an hour compared to a full year is the proportion of the existence of men and women on Earth to microbes. Plants and animals would already be present by early December, and going back in time, the first multicellular organisms would have appeared in October. So life on Earth was born in March, and from March to October the only inhabitants present were unicellular organisms, or microbes.
Microbes were the first organisms to inhabit the planet and to change it, the first organisms able to produce their own nourishment, exploiting the energy of the sun, releasing oxygen as a waste product, for the benefit of the atmosphere. Microbes have the ability to enrich the soil and eliminate pollutants, and it is thanks to their contribution that we live in an oxygenated world. They are literally everywhere; in the depths of the oceans, in the Antarctic ice, in the clouds, even in the very hot hydrothermal springs.
We human beings have evolved among them as well as from them. Microbes cannot be seen with the naked eye, and are generally considered to be carriers of germs and diseases. This stereotype does not do them justice: the majority of microbes are not pathogenic, do not make you ill, and are actually essential to the continuance of life on Earth. Of all the existing species of bacteria, the ones that cause diseases are less than a hundred, the thousands of species that are found in our body are harmless, and many of them protect the balance and health of the body. They help us digest food, produce vitamins and minerals, break down toxins and dangerous chemicals, and protect us from disease by taking space away from dangerous microbes or by eliminating them directly. They intervene in the construction of our body, educate the immune system and contribute to the development of our nervous system.
The key ideas of "I Contain Multitudes"
Try 4books Premium for free!