What caused the universe?

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Neil
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What caused the universe?

Post by Neil » Sat Jan 17, 2009 1:25 pm

It surpsises me how seldom the argument that the universe has always existed comes up, at least in everyday conversations about such matters. Personally, I find this idea intellectually satisfying, moreso than the idea that something could have come from nothing. Most people can kind of get their head around the idea of an infinite future, so why is an infinite past such an unreasonable theory?

Any thoughts?
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Gar
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by Gar » Sat Jan 17, 2009 3:34 pm

If there was an infinite past then we would live in a homogeneous universe where everything is at the same temperature, due to the action of the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. i.e. that the entropy of the universe tends to increase.
if that was the case then we would have no stars and therefore no solar systems. A lot of work in high energy physics in the last few decades has been about to higher and higher energy levels that we can use to simulate conditions at the start of the universe. this gives a good overview of the evidence for the big bang.
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by Scorpio » Sat Jan 17, 2009 5:09 pm

To be honest, I think we mightn't be intellectually developed enough to comprehend the origin of the universe. How can something just start from nothing? The answer is definetly not 'God'. There has to be a scientific explanation, but I don't think we will ever find it... :?
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by Neil » Sat Jan 17, 2009 6:45 pm

@Gar:

I appear to have been misunderstood. I don't have an issue with the Big Bang. It's a theory that I'm 100% behind. But if it happened at a finite time in the past, it simply opens up more questions, such as, of course, "what caused the big bang?" I'm hopeful that those questions can be answered in the future, by scientific exploration.

What I'm saying is that there has always been a plane in which things can physically exist, and that this plane itself did not need a creator. It has an infinite past and and infinite future.
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by aZerogodist » Sat Jan 17, 2009 7:43 pm

Neil: This should be in the Science or Skepticism section. Posting it here smells like holy smoke.

Neil: What I'm saying is that there has always been a plane in which things can physically exist, and that this plane itself did not need a creator. It has an infinite past and and infinite future.

I cannot understand how you can say "that there has always been a plane in which things can physically exist" as this is pure speculation. I would advise you reading "Hyperspace" -Michio Kaku, he does have some intresting documentries, but this book goes where no tv-doc can. Explained in non-techno jargan.
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Gar
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by Gar » Sun Jan 18, 2009 4:32 pm

Neil wrote:@Gar:

I appear to have been misunderstood. I don't have an issue with the Big Bang. It's a theory that I'm 100% behind. But if it happened at a finite time in the past, it simply opens up more questions, such as, of course, "what caused the big bang?" I'm hopeful that those questions can be answered in the future, by scientific exploration.

What I'm saying is that there has always been a plane in which things can physically exist, and that this plane itself did not need a creator. It has an infinite past and and infinite future.
I read a piece in the new scientist a couple of months ago about a new theory called Loop Quantum Cosmology that you might find interesting.

I would also recommend Hyperspace by Michio Kaku, he writes extremely clearly and with a real passion for the subject. Unfortunately string theory has fallen from favour as of late due to the large amount of solutions that we can get from it.
I also think Kaku has a very good TV show, I forget what it's called but it might have been on Channel 4.
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by JH » Sun Jan 18, 2009 6:56 pm

Scorpio wrote:To be honest, I think we mightn't be intellectually developed enough to comprehend the origin of the universe. How can something just start from nothing? The answer is definetly not 'God'.
If we exist in an advanced simulation (cf. The Matrix) - Then 'god', the prime mover, is whatever switched on the simulation at the beginning of what we perceive as time.

And you can never prove that you *don't* exist in a simulation! :)
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by Scorpio » Sun Jan 18, 2009 7:41 pm

JH wrote:
Scorpio wrote:To be honest, I think we mightn't be intellectually developed enough to comprehend the origin of the universe. How can something just start from nothing? The answer is definetly not 'God'.
If we exist in an advanced simulation (cf. The Matrix) - Then 'god', the prime mover, is whatever switched on the simulation at the beginning of what we perceive as time.

And you can never prove that you *don't* exist in a simulation! :)
You can' t prove a lot of thing, so anything could be possible really. This universe is so incredible. I would do anything to find out what this place really is...
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by mkaobrih » Sun Jan 18, 2009 9:53 pm

JH wrote: If we exist in an advanced simulation (cf. The Matrix) - Then 'god', the prime mover, is whatever switched on the simulation at the beginning of what we perceive as time.
And you can never prove that you *don't* exist in a simulation! :)
Nope that makes god a more superior being – a more or better-evolved creature but not supernatural. I’ve got no problem with me being an alien’s computer program just don’t ask me to believe that that alien didn’t evolve from some other alien.
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Re: What caused the universe?

Post by JH » Sun Jan 18, 2009 10:35 pm

mkaobrih wrote:
JH wrote: If we exist in an advanced simulation (cf. The Matrix) - Then 'god', the prime mover, is whatever switched on the simulation at the beginning of what we perceive as time.
And you can never prove that you *don't* exist in a simulation! :)
Nope that makes god a more superior being – a more or better-evolved creature but not supernatural. I’ve got no problem with me being an alien’s computer program just don’t ask me to believe that that alien didn’t evolve from some other alien.
Exactly - It's probable other intelligent species evolved and exist(ed) in the universe, it's possible that some of these species survived self-annihilation long enough to evolved to a highly advanced state, possibly billions of years ago. Possibly before this iteration of the universe as we perceive it within our timescales.

In fact, the idea of a highly evolved 'super-powerful' creator(s) would withstand critical analysis far better than the idea of a supernatural creator.
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