The universe is not trying to tell you anything

The website YouCantBreakMe threw this article under the entertainment section. It’s entertaining, all right, and also eye rolling.

If you see repeating numbers (like on a digital clock – 11:11) it means the universe has message for you!

Did you know that!? I didn’t know that!

One of the most valued numbers are 11, and when it is in the form of this 11:11, then its significance is even higher.

The numbers above say that your cell memory is activated.

What this number does is activate your memory to remember something that you can’t recall. The 11:11 is a number that tells you that you are doing the right thing and that you are in tune with a higher reality.

Do I have time to unpack this? Maybe not, but I can at least pull out the fluffy popcorn peanuts in the box and chuck them in the trash — wait: this whole box is fluffy popcorn peanuts. Are those recyclable? Maybe they should go into recycling…

Anyway, cell memory is not a thing, not in the way woo pseudoscience websites and this article propose it. Scientific American looked into body memory in an article from 2015, much more established and trustworthy as a source. It reports on some research done with neurons and synapses from sea slugs and how they behave in a petri dish in a lab (but potentially within a slug’s head as well):

Over several days the neurons spontaneously formed a number of synapses. The scientists then administered the neurotransmitter serotonin to the neurons, causing them to create many more synapses—the same process by which a living creature would form a long-term memory. When they inhibited a memory-forming enzyme and checked the neurons after 48 hours, the number of synapses had returned to the initial number—but they were not the same individual synapses as before.

Going by the article, they took this to mean that a nerve cell body has some intrinsic “memory” of how many synapses should be there and will make sure that at least that many are indeed there. In this case, some of the originals remained, and some of the new ones did as well.

Harvard also reported on some research into stem cell memory, which is a good read for an armchair scientist like myself who never cared about biology in school but finds more of it interesting now.

Back to the original pile of fluff:

This number also points to some divine connection between the terrestrial world and the spiritual world. It is crucial that you notice when this event takes place. They are special times, and they are charged with spiritual energy…

And it goes on from there into chakras and “the purpose of humans on earth” and all kinds of questions you’re supposedly supposed to ask the universe about instead of going back to sleep at 2:22, 3:33 or 4:44 in the morning.

You know what else is interesting about those kinds of numbers? They’re really easy to remember seeing on a clock once in a while. You know what else is interesting? Something called confirmation bias.

You haven’t put any specific thought into the meaning of 6:19 (beyond “that’s when the alarm goes off”) so you’re not going to remember when you see it. (Until the alarm goes off, and then it’s “Damn, right, I gotta work today!”)

If you start assigning meaning to these particular repeating number combinations and then see one, you’ve primed yourself into “confirming” something you already believe to be true and are more likely to remember when it happens. And every time you notice it happening it will cement that belief even more. No matter how unlikely that belief is to be true.

Now, the epiphanies that you would get from such a fantastic experience can’t be explained in words. It has more to do with feeling an atmosphere of incredible events.

No, it really is just coincidental. Easier to remember it happening, maybe, but still a coincidence, and not the universe trying to tell you big secrets and reveal the mysteries.

About 1minionsopinion

Canadian Atheist Basically ordinary Library employee Avid book lover Ditto for movies Wanna-be writer Procrastinator
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