The end of space

Discussion in 'Astronomy, Exobiology, & Cosmology' started by Fil, Feb 11, 2001.

  1. moving Registered Senior Member

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    139
    If you imagine a line starting at point “A” and extending out to infinity, how could the line be infinitely long if it has an end point?
    Where is the fault in my logic? Is it that I assumed there is an infinity?
     
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  3. HYPERBAND Registered Senior Member

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    59
    Heres something I have thought for many years, Imagine our solar system as being an atom kind of looks and acts like one does it not? Combine it with the surrounding solar systems to create an even larger mass to create well lets say a speck of dust. That dust sits on a floor composed of even more atoms "or solar systems if you will" in a room that is part of a house sitting on an even larger mass of atoms and so on and so on..... Infinite Largeness~Infinite smallness. With this in mind how small are we.
    If you were small enough to sit on an atom that was part of a paper clip you would never know the begining or the end of it.
     
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  5. barckhal Registered Member

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    2
    Hi folks. I'm new to this forum, but it is exactly what I've been looking for. This has been a "thought hobby" of mine for over 25 years.

    I've been reading through several of these threads and I see that a number of you share some of the same thoughts as I. And several months ago, Scientific American had a special edition on the current theories of time and space and cosmology, etc. And an article in the next month's issue on the very issue of "Is Space Infinitite".

    I think the answer must be yes. I think that belief in infinities allows many difficult questions to have elegantly simple answers.

    When did time begin?
    Negative infinity

    Where will it end?
    Positive infinity

    The singularities of black holes.

    Half the distance to the goal.

    How can a photon behave both as a particle and a wave?
    It is a wave consisting of an infinitite number of points of light (photons) ... see half the distance ... connect the dots.

    Is there a creator?
    If everything and everywhere and every moment always existed, then there would be no need for one. Otherwise, you are just replacing the "hard to accept" infinity of the universe with a another, that of an infinite creator, that is easier to accept because by its very existince (or so we rationalize) it is unknowable.

    I believe there is one fundamental rule that governs the universe. That is, there can NEVER exist only ONE "thing". There must always be TWO"things" ... the "thing" and the opposite or the absence of that "thing".

    The fact that ANYTHING exists hints at the fact that EVERYTHING exists. If the universe was finite, where did it come from? Did it come from nowhere? From nothing? That's what the Big Bang implies. It came from nothing. But my theory says there cannot be just "nothing". There must also be its opposite ... EVERYTHING.

    Nowhere and Everywhere.
    Never and Always
    No time and All time.

    If you believe in infinities, not only is ANYTHING possible, but EVERYTHING IS!

    Just my opening volley.

    albert
     
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  7. tetravex Registered Member

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    5
    another question

    the universe cannot really be finite. when u think about it, what came first the chicken or the egg...

    if the universe was created by someting, there had to be somehting to create it, whether a big bang, God, Allah, some sort of natural causes, anything, so if these are plausible explanations for the creation of the universe, where were the ingredients contained to begin with to create this universe?

    You are completely right i think

    <-Exit->
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2003
  8. Beercules Registered Senior Member

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    342
    The wave is a probability wave. Forget points, they lead to confusion. So imagine a photon as a string, which is the particle aspect of it. This string will have an associated wave function spread throughout the entire universe. You thus have a finite probability of finding the string throughout that wave.

    No it doesn't. Care to tell us why you believe it does?

    There is no such thing as nowhere. Nor is there such thing as never, no time or nothing. They only exist as logical negation to their positive concepts. This type of misunderstanding with the english language causes a lot of unnecessary confusion when dealing with cosmology. Discard it.
     
  9. Datura surrender to nothing Registered Senior Member

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    161
    wow, tetra. You're requesting an answer to a question you posted over two years ago...haha.

    These messages, like the universe, boggle my mind. I think there being a creator is preposterous, but nothing is for certain. I often thought to myself, "How can [the Christian] God create something, and yet always exist beforehand?" Well, I don't believe in a higher being, and my next few statements would suggest it would be logical to, but this is just a thought process, not a belief. I look at it this way (laugh if you so choose): we could all be in a huge box, or what we on earth perceive as a box. It's far too large for us to ever see the end. Something, obviously created that box and everything in it and observes what goes on. Our laws wouldn't apply to this entity since it's capable of creating gases, molecules, 'living' beings, etc. If this god-like creature is above our laws, who says it can't be infinite?
     
  10. tetravex Registered Member

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    5
    Maybe we are looking at this the wrong way?

    Perhaps, instead of assuming that we are just things inside this huge universe, we think of perspective.

    Say, many years ago people thought couldnt think that the atom could exist, and after it was proven, no one could imagine anything smaller, then we found electrons, protons, and neutrons, and nobody could imagine anything smaller, but then there are things that make up the electrons.

    Maybe we are just eons, and we are a part of something so small as an electron, and those other universes a part of the same electron, which makes an atom, which is a part of grain of sand, on a beach, on a continent, on a planet, in a galaxy, in a universe, and that whole universe is just an eon to start the electron for a whole new atom?

    far fetched i know, but the only one who could ever realize it, is the largest, we could never comprehend somethin so huge, the ant in the ant farm we are, but outside the kid in his room thinks he knows everything, he knows what and where u r, and where u stand, but the ant hasnt a chance to comprehend it.

    <-exit->
     
  11. barckhal Registered Member

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    2
    to Beercules:

    quote:

    Originally posted by barckhal

    "How can a photon behave both as a particle and a wave?
    It is a wave consisting of an infinitite number of points of light (photons) ... see half the distance ... connect the dots. "

    The wave is a probability wave. Forget points, they lead to confusion. So imagine a photon as a string, which is the particle aspect of it. This string will have an associated wave function spread throughout the entire universe. You thus have a finite probability of finding the string throughout that wave.

    [Albert] No, I don’t imagine a photon as a string. Why should a string be any less confusing than points? “Points” to me ARE significant.

    I imagine a photon as an infinitesimally small “3-dimensional point” or “instant in time”. That photon represents that “snapshot” of that view of the world at that “instant”. In other words, a quantum of “existence”. With a likewise infinitesimally small quantum of time (an instant or a moment), 4-dimensional space-time is thus a continuum of every event that takes place at every location at every instant. An endless stream of “nows”.

    quote:

    "The fact that ANYTHING exists hints at the fact that EVERYTHING exists. If the universe was finite, where did it come from? Did it come from nowhere? From nothing? That's what the Big Bang implies. "

    No it doesn't. Care to tell us why you believe it does?

    [Albert] Proponents of the Big Bang tell us that all that exists has come from the singularity that existed just before the Big Bang occurred. Time, space, all known laws of physics, everything came into being at that moment, virtually from nothing. And as I suggest, for every “thing” there must also exist the opposite of that thing. So, if “nothing” existed before the Big Bang, then its opposite, “everything”, must exist afterwards.

    quote:

    "It came from nothing. But my theory says there cannot be just "nothing". There must also be its opposite ... EVERYTHING.

    Nowhere and Everywhere.
    Never and Always
    No time and All time."

    There is no such thing as nowhere. Nor is there such thing as never, no time or nothing. They only exist as logical negation to their positive concepts. This type of misunderstanding with the english language causes a lot of unnecessary confusion when dealing with cosmology. Discard it.

    [Albert] I think it highly presumptuous of you to tell me what I do or do not understand or what I should or should not discard in terms of my thinking. I suggest PRECISELY that “nowhere”, “never”, “no time” or “nothing” do indeed exist. I posit that if infinity is a true concept that really does exist, then these “states” are necessary outcomes of negative infinity. They are NOT just logical negations.
     
  12. Beercules Registered Senior Member

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    342
    They are just easier to imagine than a dimensionless point.

    Why? In terms of logic, its clearly demonstratable that the claim is false.

    By definition, they do not. Saying nothing is a thing (exists) is a blatent contradiction. So they are mere negations, unless you don't believe in logic in the first place.
     
  13. curioucity Unbelievable and odd Registered Senior Member

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    Ugh, finite or endless? geez, this thing is merely confusing for me....

    Anyway, I'd agree to the idea that the outer space is 'somewhat' infinite. Just think, is there an end to the nothingness out there?
     
  14. bigjnorman Registered Senior Member

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    158
    on nothing and infinity

    "nothing" is indeed "something". It is a concept or ideah, and it does exists as an ideal, just not in a way it can be extended in any sort of "spatial" way, that is the way we think.

    I also belive that infinity is just another concept such as nothingness. Once one tries to understand it as more than an ideah you get contradictions.

    I think the idea of a "spatially infinite" universe is just as obserd as trying to describe nothingness.
     
  15. G-FRESH Registered Member

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    4
    Re: Maybe we are looking at this the wrong way?

    I like what you said here and i think the same way. We might only be a small part of something bigger then what we can comprehend.
     
  16. bigjnorman Registered Senior Member

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    158
    I also completely agree with the previous post.

    people theorize about other dimensions, I tend to see things at the atomic level as being in another dimension, governed by nuclear forces (existing in a quantum reality) instead of gravitational and electro-magnetic forces because of their size....

    .Having said that, imagine an atom could never understand gravitation forces because of the atom's small size. I find it easy to imagine the entire universe as a single atom on a larger scale.
     
  17. fadingCaptain are you a robot? Valued Senior Member

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    1,762
    It becomes even easier when you study fractals...
     
  18. Aquarius Registered Member

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    1
    Hello All,

    I stumbled onto this site while searching for info. on the planet
    Mars (dates for best viewing etc.) and low and behold I see
    this topic which is near & dear to my heart. Before I start:
    1. I am not the best at making my point behind a keyboard.
    2. I do not want to preach or sound "preachy" - if I do please
    refer to #1 above LOL !!

    Now, to my point. Having turned my back on "organized religon"
    (having been raised Protestant in a small N.Y. town) BUT remaining a believer in a "Creator" and having two young sons
    that I felt the need to raise with a beleif in "God" I felt I needed
    an expanation for them that, at all times, rings true. I came up
    with a simple explanation/test for them. I told them that you will
    have, no doubt, have endless debates over the existance of God,
    maybe in school/college, hanging with freinds and personally etc.
    The greatest way I know to bring all home is to go outside my
    house on a clear night and really look at the strars AND ask the
    question - where does the universe end ?? When you (or a buddy, teacher WHOMEVER) gives their answer, ask them "what
    is beyond the end ?" OK, not rocket science - others have posted
    similar. Where I differ however is that, at 50 years of age, I have
    been around long enough to see what man is capable of and what he is not (and granted, some amazing stuff both in theory
    and practice has been accomplished - been through the whole
    Darwin thing etc.,etc. and no answer is sufficent because there
    has to be an occurrance before and after each explanation therefore throwing the whole argument back in your face e.g,
    if there is life on Mars, distant galaxies etc. it would tend to disprove the Biblical explanation of "creationism" - so what ??
    There still remains the bigger question - again simple enough.
    When you consider that there are over 100 million distinct life
    forms on this planet alone one begins to realize that even the greatest thinker/threroist of our time can not come close to explaining "it all". Even though man has accomplished much, I
    do not see the "answer" to this question coming to light in a million years (worm holes, the whole 9 yards) because you still
    come back to the "how/why" no matter what the exlanation !
    I prefer to leave it at that and accept that we will never know
    as humans on this planet. Even the "evolution theory" leaves
    the unanswered question (although it tends to diprove the
    Biblical theory). I also think it is part of mans make up to persue the answer and feel it should continue - I'll read about it when
    the next theory is published BUT set my mind at ease with the idea that we are not to know (debating my own existance/purpose and inevitable demise is enough of a quandry
    for now - but hey, thats a different thread LOL !!). I don't intend this to end the debate or stifle thought on this topic - not my point. Actually, I also welcome some debate and any insight that
    would help me to re think my opinion (and it's just an opinion).
    Fire away !!
    Aquarius
     
  19. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    19,083
  20. Canute Registered Senior Member

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    1,923
    Welcome to the bearpit.
    I feel that your approach, which deals with the metaphysical logic as well as the science, is spot on. However I don't quite agree with your conclusion (nor would any follower of non-dual philosophies).

    If 'existence' is defined scientifically then you are right, existence entails dualism. It follows that there never was just one thing in existence, it makes no conceptual sense. (Something that was truly ONE thing would have no dual properties by which we could perceive it or conceive of it).

    However this is only true in an epistemilogical sense. An entity must have dual properties for us to be able to think about it. But ontologically speaking it IS logically possible for just ONE thing to exist. (e.g. a monist, non-dual cosmic substrate from which the rest arises). This one thing would necessarily be scientifically equivalent to nothing (since it would be unobservable and unprovable) but it can nevertheless exist at least theoretically. (Thus this thing would be a similar kind of thing to consciousness, which is scientifically non-existent yet seems (to some) to exist).

    Because we cannot conceive of this thing it is tempting to say that it cannot exist, (as you have done). In fact all it suggests is that our epistemology cannot not extend quite as far as an proper understanding of our ontology requires. This is suggested (and proved according to Penrose) by Goedel's theorems, and is what philosopher Colin McGinn calls our 'epistemic limit'. It is also what underlies the Buddhist claim that you cannot arrive at the final truth by thinking, but must do it through experience (which is not subject to such epistemic limits and is therefore capable of journeying one last step beyond dualism into monism).

    Thus you are right that epistemilogically there must always be two things, but wrong in assuming that this means that the same must be true ontologically.

    I hope that makes some sense, it's a slippery topic.
     
  21. xtreme2k Registered Member

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    3
    How can the universe be 'expanding' if it is of an infinite size? To me for something to expand it has to be finite...

    correct me if I am wrong
     
  22. Pete It's not rocket surgery Moderator

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    10,166
    It is possible for infinity to expand. Yes, it's a conceptual problem for many people.

    Essentially, it means that everything gets further away from everything else. This also means that no matter where you stand, you always look like you're at the center of expansion.


    Try this:
    How many even integers are there? Infinity, right?
    How many integers are there altogether? Twice as many, but still infinity...
     
  23. Beercules Registered Senior Member

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    342
    Also, how many points are there in a volume the size of a grain of sand? And how many in the total volume of the earth?
     

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