Today's question is if we think that big history offers the reunification of all our knowledge, how can we actually do that? Is it possible at all? And if so, how would we do it? Those are the questions I will try to answer in this short talk. Now, big history offers an overview. An overview of all of history. From the beginning of the universe right until life on Earth where we are, right here, right now. That's what we'll be doing. And that means it must contain all our knowledge of the past. Now obviously, in a course, we cannot represent all of that knowledge. We cannot even begin to represent most of the data that we have. So we have to select our data. And we have to decide what is important to tell and what actually could be left out, which is most of it. So, how do we do that in academia? We do that using theories. Theories are mental constructs that help us to order reality. In this case, the reality of the past. So these theories help us to decide what is important to tell and what you actually could leave out in the story. Although it may be important to refer to it if we want to verify or at least think about the value of our story. However, in many areas in the academia, there are actually no theories that are generally accepted. Major example is human history. It doesn't have what we call a paradigm. It doesn't have a general theoretical approach that tell us how all of history, human history at least, works. So that's a problem. Now, that has happened before. Let's say, 100 years ago, there was no theory of geology. There was perhaps not even a theory of organic chemistry. And all these disciplines have now evolved all their theories. So it may happen in the future that human history will also evolve its own paradigm. But right now, it doesn't exist. So what we're seeing is that big history consists of a series of theories that are reasonably well established. There are Big Bang cosmology, plate tectonics that tells us how the surface of the Earth works. Why there are volcanoes. Why there are mountains. Why there are oceans and earthquakes and all the rest. But we don't have it for other areas. We don't have it also for, let's say, the interaction between life and geology, the biosphere, in other words. So what we're seeing when we think about big history that suddenly we've realized, hey, there are areas where we have theories and there are areas where we don't have clear theories. So suddenly, by studying big history, we see the gaps in our theories. So that is an additional problem. Now, how can we start to tackle all of that? My suggestion is that if we can formulate a general underlying theory of history. That may help us to understand and explain to some extent what has been happening all over time. Perhaps we can also use that theory to connect all the other theories to it and see how that works. Now in my book Big History and the Future of Humanity, I have developed such a theory. Which is now generally accepted among big historians all around the world, so I think. And it is actually very simple, it works like this. The question is if you get a certain level of complexity. Let's consider ourselves as a form of complexity. How does it actually happen? Why is it that we don't fall apart? Why is it that we can maintain ourselves? How does it work? And the answer is very simple. We need certain amount of energy. And also certain amount of matter, certain flows that go through us. That help us maintain this complexity. And we need certain good circumstances. I call them Goldilocks circumstances. For instance, we need to live on the surface of a planet. We wouldn't want to be too deep down in the planet. Because, obviously, gravity would crush us because of all the weight of all the matter surrounding us. If you are too high up in the atmosphere, there will not be enough air. So that's not a pleasant situation either. Actually, we can only live on the surface of this planet in a very narrow band. Those are part of the Goldilocks circumstances that are good for us and, therefore, help us to survive. And we need energy to maintain ourselves. We need to eat. We need to breathe. That's what happens when we breathe oxygen. It combines with the food that we've eaten. And that provides our energy. And also provides matter to do all the things we're doing, make our bodies. So all of that is part of what I consider a very simple general theory of how big history works. It doesn't only work with humans. It works just as well with explaining how the beginning of the universe works. Actually, this is a theory that is underlying all of natural science. And it's very easy to accommodate all of natural science in a theory. I don't think there are any contradictions. But the challenge is to find out how can we connect all the other areas to it. Especially the areas that either don't have general theories, such as human history. Or areas that have very partial theories such as, for example, the study of literature and poetry. You name it, psychology. How can we do that? And now you see there is a major challenge arising here. It has never been attempted before. To reunify all the academic theories into one single theoretical framework. Perhaps it is possible, perhaps not. I think it's worth giving it a shot. And I think it would be great if you, the viewer, would be thinking along those lines while watching all the movies of this course. What could we do to improve? What kind of challenges are out there? How can we turn big history into a better story? I think we're currently at the very beginning of big history. You're not at the end yet. You're able to tell a story about how everything has happened. But I'm sure the story can be improved greatly. And we need your help. So please help us to improve our story.