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Posted by Phil.o.Sofir on January 28, 1999 20:14:45 UTC

: : On of my fundamental beliefs is the following: Everything I currently belief could be entirely false. : This is crucial in understanding how I, and others who share many of my beliefs think. We are open to new ideas, and we are not set in our beliefs. I think this actually gives more credibility to our beliefs. It doesn't prove them by any means. Rather it simply shows we probably went through a more thorough and unbiased thought process than many people do when forming beliefs. : BIG BANG: This issue comes up on the board often, but it usually doesn't get combed with a fine tooth comb. By no means am I an expert in the area, however there are a few things that need mention. First, no big bang theorist that I have heard suggest the universe came from nothing. Rather, a singularity. They are divided on the big crunch idea (the universe will contract when it reaches a certain point back down to the singularity) and many, if not most, of them never suggest that this universe is all that exists. Let me first define "universe" as I use the term. It is simply the known area of space composed of galaxie. It is thought to be expandin, hence the big bang theory, and its size and age are agreed to within certain peramiters. There are big debates on this two issues, but we have a range. Again, it could be totally wrong and I stand by that. Now the problem I am seeing is many people seem to think "universe" means "all that exists" when they hear physicists talk about it on the news. This is not the case. One popular theory is that our universe is just one of several in a mega-universe. I like this theory for one main reason. If you look at what we do know, there is a trend. Follow me closely. Stars make up galaxies, galaxies make up our universe, universes make up something. The two main points I want to stress are these. 1) Most big bang theorists do not suggest the universe came from nothing. 2) Most of these people do not suggest the universe is all that exists. : Now, Stephen Hawking. My last point. I think many of his words are taken out of context. A lot of what he says is for a reason. Simplicity, so the average person has a chance to understand these complex issues. He often discusses the big bang and mentions "god" planted the seed (the singularity and he uses that as a starting point in discussing the universe. Let me suggest Hawking is by no means religious. When he speaks of a god, or a creator, he never puts him in a specific religion. He simply uses him as a starting point. This does two things: 1) It makes it possible to discuss our known universe without needing to go into purely theoretical ideas (such as the mega-universe) ideas. 2) It makes most people who are religious feel more comfortable with his explanations. Hence, he doesn't alient anyone. He is merely keeping his audience. You can't run before you learn to walk. : It is very important to understand the intelligence of this man. People in high places do things and say things for reasons. I suggest we keep this in mind.

: H

By Universe I mean that if you took off today in a strait line in any directition, you would go that way indefinitely, mega universe to me anyway seems to suggest just another sphere beyond which is the outer side or edge. And a sigularity is the occurance of events which do not adhere to the natural laws as we know them? Mr. Hawkins is very smart, and contributes much to our science in theory, it is just that it seems more like creationism to me. And the nothingness of "space" still needs its placement within science, as far as I can tell, it is looked upon as a void and thats all the discussion it gets, although it is to be warped, affects how gravitation works...

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