Difference between World and Universe
Key Difference: World is used to describe the whole human civilization, specifically history and the human experience. In general usage, Earth is considered as the world. The term ‘universe’ refers to everything including space and dark matter. Universe is used to refer to everything that exists including time, space, stars, galaxies and things such as matter and energy.
The terms ‘world’ and ‘universe’ are often confusing for many people as there is no set definition for the two words. There are only certain times at which we realize that how small a blip Earth is in compared to the vast universe out there. The term ‘world’ has become synonymous with Earth and refers to the planet that we live on. However, the term ‘universe’ refers to the “everything that exists.”
World has become synonymous with Earth and refers to the planet we live in. However, the word has multiple definitions. It can be used to refer to various different things in different context including philosophical and theological. World is used to describe the whole human civilization, specifically history and the human experience. In general usage, Earth is considered as the world, as we reside specifically on this planet, making it our home. Using this example, if we had resided on Mars, we would refer to Mars as world.
The term ‘world’ is derived from the Old English ‘weorold, weorld, worold), a mix of ‘wer’ meaning “man” and ‘eld’ meaning “age.” It is roughly recognized as ‘Age of Man.” In multiple scenarios, world has been used with reference to humans and their civilization. In a theological context, ‘world’ refers to the material or profane sphere, rather than celestial, spiritual, transcendent or sacred. For example, using world in world history refers to the history of the first civilizations to the present. In terms of ‘end of the world’, we do not refer to the end of the planet Earth, but rather just the humans. Using world in almost all aspects refers to Earth and its people.
The term ‘universe’ refers to everything including space and dark matter. Universe is used to refer to everything that exists including time, space, stars, galaxies and things such as matter and energy. The universe is considered as an ever expanding space, where all galaxies, planets and stars exist. The Big Bang Theory also describes how the universe came to existence. The study of the universe includes anything and everything about the universe, including how it is formed, how stars are born, what happens when objects get sucked into a black hole, etc.
The term ‘universe’ is derived from Old Latin word ‘Univorsum’, which has been roughly broken down to ‘uni’ meaning “one” and ‘Versum’ meaning “something that rolls or rotates.” This Latin term was then adapted in French as ‘Univers’ and later in English as ‘Universe.” The universe is considered to be infinite space and is considered to be govern by the same physical laws and constants throughout most of its extent and history. There are other theories that are in works such as multiverse, which suggests that there are multiple universes that exist at the same time. These are popularly known as parallel universe. At present, the universe is considered to infinite; however, observable universe (up to the point where we can observe) is finite and can change depending on the technology we have.
Image Courtesy: worldcleaners.co.uk, space.com