There are currently over 7 billion humans largely similar, in many respects, to you (and some just plain whacko ones as well!) 😉
To try and put that into some kind of perspective our individual minds can make sense out of consider that you feel you have the right, privilege or obligation to do a thing, any particular thing, it does not really matter for this exercise, and you determine to go ahead and do it.
I will use throwing a dinner party for 7 friends as my example, feel free to choose your own.
A dinner party might not sound like much of a thing to get concerned about for one individual (plus 7). But imagine if everyone on the planet wanted to do as i am doing? Now it becomes a big issue. How big?
One way to appreciate it might be to imagine that if instead of 7 friends you tried multiplying it by a factor of 10 – so now you have 70 guests who needs seating and feeding – at the same time! If you are the one doing the cooking you will be unlikely to have time to eat yourself and your weekly food bill is going to be expensive. And that’s before you have hired the appropriate hall, seating, cutlery and glasses, not to mention buying the drink for 70 people. (7 x 10 to the power 1).
That was just a factor of 10 from the original party – now increase the factor by another 10 – to 700 people. Now you’ll need to hire staff to help and may need to consider parking spaces or bussing people into whatever stadium you are going to be having everyone sitting down in. Naturally the cost is astronomical at this point – and for just one dinner party? (7 x 10 to the power 2)
Now go one factor of 10 higher -7,000 people. A small town! (7 x 10 to the power 3)
Go ten higher again – 70,000. A small city you have to feed and seat and mingle with. (7 x 10 to the power 4).
Go again – 700,000, a medium sized city. Some countries do not have that large a population. (7 x 10 to the power 5)
Once more by 10 – 7 million! Imagine the size of the kitchen you’d need to build to feed them just one dinner all at the same time? How many stovetops or ovens, or microwaves if you needed the time-saving (and you would!) How many waiters would you employ? Security staff?? (7 x 10 to the power 6)
Go again – 70,000,000 guests they’d need to start out 24-48 hours before the start time to get in and get seated before dinner was served. – logistics might require several cities entire available hall hire space to fit everyone – or a purpose built restaurant area would be needed – we’re talking major expense here… for one night, one dinner). (7 x 10 to the power 7)
Go again (we’re almost 10% of the way there now!!!) 700 million people at your dinner party – over twice the entire US population or a half of China’s! I’d probably need to hire out somewhere like Greenland (too cold) or Cuba for my ‘little’ dinner party. (7 x 10 to the power 8)
Finally, just ten times more than the last one, and we have 7 billion people involved. The number of people currently living – AND HAVING THE SAME RIGHTS AS YOU TO DO THE THINGS YOU DO!!! Me throwing a dinner party for 7 friends is my right, as it is for everyone else on the planet. Imagining the cost to me of inviting all the world to my party is horriffic, in terms of money and resources consumed/used, but if everyone on Earth does the same then seven TIMES the cost would be the equivalent! (Everyone at my party does the same as me making 8 party’s, including mine) (7 x 10 to the power 9)
So the next time you decide to do a thing, maybe spare a little thought for what happens to our one and only planet if we all decide to do the same as you some time before we die. What are the possible consequences of that thing occurring 7,000 000,000 times?
And that is just once – what happens to the Earth’s resources if you (and everyone else) do the thing once a month? A day? An hour?
Maybe this planet has more than enough people on it already?