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10 Strange Ways Life Would Change If the Earth Wasn’t Round

For thousands of years, we humans have known that our planet is a beautiful sphere that revolves around the sun, while at the same time, revolving around itself. This makes us enjoy day and night, as well as heat in summer and cold in winter, for example. Thanks to the fact that the Earth is round, other phenomena also occur, without which, life as we know it would not be possible. But what if instead of being spherical, the planet was a flat disk?

At Bright Side, we wanted to know the answer to that question and are sharing everything we researched about it with you. You’ll see that life would be very different from what we’re used to.

1. Gravity would be different from the way we know it.

According to the law proposed by Isaac Newton, gravity not only pulls us downward but also toward the center of the Earth. For this reason, our feet are on the ground and we don’t float through the air.
If the Earth was flat, the force of gravity would pull us toward the flat center and, for example, an activity as simple as walking would become exhausting. The further we’d move from the center, the more the gravitational pull would push us horizontally; in a way that would seem as if we were constantly walking up a steep hill.

2. Trees would grow diagonally.

For the same reason that on a flat Earth we would walk inclined, trees and plants would grow diagonally, with the roots pointing toward the gravitational center, while the tops would grow in the opposite direction.

3. The seasons would be the same all over the planet.

Because the Earth is an almost perfect sphere orbiting the sun and also rotates around itself on a slightly tilted axis, different seasons are experienced at the same time in different parts of the globe. While in one hemisphere the planet experiences winter, in the other, it’s summer. The tilt of the Earth’s axis causes the sun’s rays to reach the surface of our planet at different angles, depending on the latitude and the time of year. In other words, the closer we are to the poles, the more inclined the sun’s rays will be and, therefore, the less hot they will be.

If our planet were flat, on the other hand, the sun’s rays would fall at the same angle over the entire surface; the result would be that everyone (over the entire plane) would have the same season.

4. There would be no satellites, so there would be no GPS.

According to the flat-Earth theory, the sun and moon revolve above the world, radiating light and heat downward, like a desk lamp. If this were so, artificial satellites could not work since they revolve around the planet. Without satellites, for example, we would not be able to use GPS (and would often get lost).

5. We would all see the same constellations.

On a spherical earth, if we look up at the night sky, we see different constellations depending on which hemisphere we are in. If we move northward, the Pleiades begin to become more and more visible; if, on the other hand, we move southward, we can observe the Southern Cross. On a flat earth, the same constellations and stars would be visible from anywhere on the surface.

6. Shadows would be the same length everywhere in the world.

As explained above, the sun’s rays reach the planet and strike it at different angles, depending on the tilt of the Earth. For this reason, when the rays fall on an object or a person, shadows are generated that have a different length depending on where in the world they are located. On a flat planet, sunlight would bathe the entire surface at the same angle, so the shadows would measure exactly the same in both China and Mexico, for example.

7. We would always see the same thing from different places and heights.

When we are on the seashore and see a ship in the distance, we can notice that the farther away it gets, the smaller it gets, until it finally disappears from our sight. The same happens when we are standing on the ground and looking straight ahead: our sight culminates on the horizon or on some object in front of us. However, if we climb a tree, our field of vision expands and we can see much farther. This happens because the Earth is round.

On a flat planet, we would see exactly the same thing from any height. The ship would get smaller as it moves away, but it would always be within our field of vision.

8. Rain would fall sideways.

Since on a flat Earth, gravity would exert its force towards the center of the Earth’s plane, the rain would fall sideways, in the direction of the center. The farther we were from that point, the more sideways we would have to tilt the umbrellas. Only at the center of the plane rain would fall as we know it, vertically.

9. Water from oceans and rivers would accumulate in the center of the Earth.

For the same gravitational reason, on a flat planet, all the rivers and seas would flow toward the center, where all the water would accumulate. The edges, or the farthest places, would be practically dry.

10. It would take an “eternity” to travel from one part of the world to another.

The map of a flat disk-shaped Earth places the Arctic in the center, while Antarctica forms a wall of ice around it, toward the edges of the planet. If this were really the geography of our planet, airplane flights between some countries would take a very long time or would have no choice but to cross enormous distances.

For example, if we wanted to go from Australia to the Antarctic Peninsula, the shortest way would be to fly over the Arctic and both Americas. On the other hand, crossing Antarctica from one side to the other, as has already been done numerous times, would be an impossible journey.

What other things do you imagine would change if the Earth was flat? Would you like to live on such a planet?

Got some cool photos or stories and want to be featured on Bright Side? Send them all right HERE and right now. Meanwhile, we’re waiting!

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