What are the Odds of Existing?


I saw a post that said the odds of being born are 1 in 400 trillion.

Could someone could break this down or provide another number?

In: 0

your odds are 100% because you are able to ask this question. You exist so your probability of existing is 100%.

“What are the odds you were ever born” before you were actually born is a whole different conversation. and you can come up with all sorts of answers that are really close to 0 depending on what assumptions you make.

Well, remember that probability only applies to things *that haven’t happened yet*.

The odds of you existing are 1. You exist. It happened. If you didn’t exist, then the odds of you existing would be 0: you don’t exist.

Also, consider the “somebody else” element: even if the odds of *you specifically* being born are something like 1 in 400 billion… the odds that *somebody else* would still be born and exist are probably pretty high.

Probabilities can be interpreted as either how often would the given outcome occur if you repeated the same scenario many times, or as a measure of your uncertainty about a given outcome.

So, in the first interpretation, if you somehow ran the history of humankind many times, how often would you end up with someone that you’d recognise as you? Probably not often, right? Maybe once in 400 trillion times? But then, how often would you end up with _someone_ in a broadly similar situation to you? Pretty often. Maybe every time, depending on what you mean by similar

Okay, so the second interpretation; how much uncertainty do you have about your own existence? None at all. If you’re able to consider the question then you definitely exist with 100% probability

So, how surprised should you be that you exist? Not very

People don’t seem to understand your question

It cannot be put into words how little the odds are

Your birth could’ve occurred trillions of times before over the last millions of years, yet It only occured once, years ago.
After you’ve been born it could’ve happened trillions of times again, but it didn’t.

Look at it that way: There are astronomical, incomprehensible, indescribable amounts of you, yet only one of them (_you_) were born