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Old 02-10-2019, 12:41 PM
scarface54345 scarface54345 is offline
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How did the universe and consciousness create themselves from nothing?

Just post your theories down below, and I'll get back to you ASAP
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Old 02-10-2019, 12:48 PM
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They had to. Nothing is highly unstable, so becoming something is just what it does.
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Old 02-10-2019, 12:55 PM
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One argument is that the energy from gravity and matter cancel each other out, and our universe is a zero energy state.

https://www.livescience.com/33129-to...erse-zero.html

So it could arise from nothing.

Where does consciousness come from? The evolution of the brain. I don't know when consciousness started, but integrated information theory could be why. Consciousness could be a side effect of complex physical systems.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Integr...rmation_theory

https://blogs.scientificamerican.com...consciousness/
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:10 PM
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They had to. Nothing is highly unstable, so becoming something is just what it does.
I'm not sure if I'm understanding your logic. The law of conservation of energy is that it cannot be created or destroyed. And matter is nothing more than super condensed energy.
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:12 PM
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One argument is that the energy from gravity and matter cancel each other out, and our universe is a zero energy state.

https://www.livescience.com/33129-to...erse-zero.html

So it could arise from nothing.

Where does consciousness come from? The evolution of the brain. I don't know when consciousness started, but integrated information theory could be why. Consciousness could be a side effect of complex physical systems.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Integr...rmation_theory

https://blogs.scientificamerican.com...consciousness/
You would need to have a universe in order to have gravity.
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:16 PM
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I'm not sure if I'm understanding your logic. The law of conservation of energy is that it cannot be created or destroyed. And matter is nothing more than super condensed energy.
Nothing(ness) is homogenous and isotropic. That is a peak state that is inherently unstable. By the laws of physics, as we know them, nothing would have a natural tendency to go off its peak state.
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:16 PM
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How did the universe and consciousness create themselves from nothing?

What is your position?

For example, to you have a hypothesis as to how, within the realm of known physics, the universe and, later, life and consciousness came about? Or do you think the universe, life, and consciousness were created by Intelligent Design?
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:27 PM
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I'm not even going to feign an attempt at explaining the universe but conciousness is pretty easy to explain from there. As pointed out by Wesley Clark.

Of course, one problem with the question is assuming the universe sprang from nothing.
Take hologram theory for instance , this basically presumes that the universe exists because of our perception of it. A particle here may actually be the same particle in numerous locations we just percieve it's different. Thus the universe itself is a construct. We're really just looking at something from a perspective that makes it impossible to explain what it even is, let alone where it came from.
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:28 PM
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I'm not sure if I'm understanding your logic. The law of conservation of energy is that it cannot be created or destroyed. And matter is nothing more than super condensed energy.
Then why did you ask how the universe was created out of nothing? I don’t think I can rule out the possibility that the universe has always been around, never getting created and never getting destroyed — because I just now got told about stuff that “cannot be created or destroyed”, and so I just now shrugged and said “uh, okay.”
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:34 PM
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Then why did you ask how the universe was created out of nothing? I don’t think I can rule out the possibility that the universe has always been around, never getting created and never getting destroyed — because I just now got told about stuff that “cannot be created or destroyed”, and so I just now shrugged and said “uh, okay.”
A legitimate view. We look at things, living and otherwise, and see that they tend to come into existence, abide for a while, usually experiencing some degree of metamorphosis, then eventually cease to exist in any recognizable form. The universe, in which all things we know of exist, is also a thing. Right? Is the universe a thing?
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:41 PM
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A legitimate view. We look at things, living and otherwise, and see that they tend to come into existence, abide for a while, usually experiencing some degree of metamorphosis, then eventually cease to exist in any recognizable form. The universe, in which all things we know of exist, is also a thing. Right? Is the universe a thing?
As far as I know, yes, one could characterize it as “a thing”. I’ve maybe even referred to it as “a thing” before; I don’t recall doing so, but that seems possible.
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:49 PM
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It's time to retire this question as the OP phrases it. The latest scientific understanding is that nothingness is impossible. Quantum uncertainty means that every cubic inch of space is a constant froth of virtual particles which on rare occasion can become "real." That makes for a base of virtual energy that can produce matter without violating any conservation laws.

Gotcha questions don't work until you have a sufficiently firm understanding of the subject not to be embarrassed by instant demolition of your false beliefs.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:19 PM
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As far as I know, yes, one could characterize it as “a thing”. I’ve maybe even referred to it as “a thing” before; I don’t recall doing so, but that seems possible.
But it is the sine qua non of things. Like the metathing.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:19 PM
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You would need to have a universe in order to have gravity.
I know, and our universe could be in a zero energy state, which means it requires no external energy to come into existence.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:20 PM
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God created heaven and earth
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:21 PM
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It's time to retire this question as the OP phrases it. The latest scientific understanding is that nothingness is impossible. Quantum uncertainty means that every cubic inch of space is a constant froth of virtual particles which on rare occasion can become "real." That makes for a base of virtual energy that can produce matter without violating any conservation laws.

Gotcha questions don't work until you have a sufficiently firm understanding of the subject not to be embarrassed by instant demolition of your false beliefs.
So what's in between atoms then if there is no such thing as nothing?
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:28 PM
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So what's in between atoms then if there is no such thing as nothing?
That's not nothing, since we can measure the distance between atoms. If we can give it a scalar or vector quantity it is something, not nothing.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:34 PM
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So what's in between atoms then if there is no such thing as nothing?
If this is a debate, it would be nice if you stated what you believe.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:34 PM
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But it is the sine qua non of things. Like the metathing.
You sure do have a way with words.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:44 PM
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You sure do have a way with words.
Yeah, well, I used to listen to A Way with Words on NPR every Sunday. Or maybe it was PRI. Also, Take My Word for It has been quite good.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:46 PM
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How would you know if they didn't?
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Old 02-10-2019, 03:00 PM
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Old 02-10-2019, 03:02 PM
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It's time to retire this question as the OP phrases it. The latest scientific understanding is that nothingness is impossible. Quantum uncertainty means that every cubic inch of space is a constant froth of virtual particles which on rare occasion can become "real." That makes for a base of virtual energy that can produce matter without violating any conservation laws.

Gotcha questions don't work until you have a sufficiently firm understanding of the subject not to be embarrassed by instant demolition of your false beliefs.
Yes but "space" that has virtual particles is a framework. It's not nothing. Why would it ever exist?

This is one of the true impossibilities about existence. From the way we see the universe, there's a framework of space out there. But how can it ever exist?

There should be nothing. No universe, no space, nothing at all. Because in order for there to be something there had to be something first to create that something. Which is impossible.

Basically in true emptiness - nothing at all, no space, no time, no matter, no energy - nothing can ever exist. And if something exists to allow all the rest of the things to exist, how did it get created.

And no, incoherent tribal beliefs from thousands of years ago don't explain jack towards this problem. Bringing in complex deities who care about your sex life in no way simplifies the issue.

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Old 02-10-2019, 03:18 PM
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Just post your theories down below, and I'll get back to you ASAP
Your question is far too presumptuous and speculative.
Before you get to a "how" you have to establish whether a thing has actually occurred.

I can certainly ask you "how did I manage to score seven successive 9-dart 501 finishes?" but you will quite rightly ask me to first show that I did indeed do that.
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Old 02-10-2019, 03:20 PM
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Your question is far too presumptuous and speculative.
Before you get to a "how" you have to establish whether a thing has actually occurred.
Well we definitely have a "something" now. And from our understanding of things, something can't come from nothing. And we have something but there couldn't have always been this specific something, that doesn't make any sense. How does a cosmos where there always is space-time come to exist?

I mean I sorta get your point but the fact you can read the message I wrote proves the event of creation did somehow occur.

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Old 02-10-2019, 03:25 PM
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God created heaven and earth
Well, I guess that tells us everything we need to know. We can just close up all research into cosmology now that we have the real answer. Orrr, you could explain how this hypothetical entity did this.
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Old 02-10-2019, 03:38 PM
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God created heaven and earth
...but the devil is in the details.
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Old 02-10-2019, 04:07 PM
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Well we definitely have a "something" now. And from our understanding of things, something can't come from nothing. And we have something but there couldn't have always been this specific something, that doesn't make any sense. How does a cosmos where there always is space-time come to exist?

I mean I sorta get your point but the fact you can read the message I wrote proves the event of creation did somehow occur.
Why? Why could it not have always existed?
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Old 02-10-2019, 04:10 PM
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Why? Why could it not have always existed?
Why do so many people have no problem with time going off forever in one direction, but not the opposite direction?
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Old 02-10-2019, 04:12 PM
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Why? Why could it not have always existed?
Well this does seem to be the case but it still begs how this could be.

We imagine the default state of existence to be nothing. Instead it's almost like the default state of existence is "everything".
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Old 02-10-2019, 04:17 PM
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I do not imagine nothing to be the default state of existence, because nothing is non-existence. I mostly do not imagine nothing, except that I know that “Nothing is Greater than God”, so, I believe in the greater thing.
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Old 02-10-2019, 04:20 PM
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We imagine the default state of existence to be nothing.
I’m pretty sure I do the opposite of that.
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:15 PM
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Well we definitely have a "something" now. And from our understanding of things, something can't come from nothing. And we have something but there couldn't have always been this specific something, that doesn't make any sense. How does a cosmos where there always is space-time come to exist?

I mean I sorta get your point but the fact you can read the message I wrote proves the event of creation did somehow occur.
Well, no. That is not our understanding. We have no idea whether something can or can not truly come from nothing. It may even be a question that makes no sense as the laws of the universe as we know it may break down at the point of singularity.

This line of reasoning (having a point of caused creation) is one that the religious are fond of peddling but it is of no use at all as an answer. If a cause is needed for everything then something caused creation but by the rules of that argument that creator must also have been created. It sets up an infinite regress which can only be solved with resort to special pleading. Fine, but note that having a simple proto-universe that came from nothing or has always existed is a far simpler solution than a guiding, complex intelligence which came from nothing or has always existed.
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:30 PM
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Well, no. That is not our understanding. We have no idea whether something can or can not truly come from nothing. It may even be a question that makes no sense as the laws of the universe as we know it may break down at the point of singularity.

Fine, but note that having a simple proto-universe that came from nothing or has always existed is a far simpler solution than a guiding, complex intelligence which came from nothing or has always existed.
I addressed this above and agree with you. It's just the concept of, well, if the physical laws "outside" what we can see really allow something to come from nothing it still is a bit nonsensical.
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Old 02-10-2019, 06:54 PM
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God created heaven and earth
Which God? Rama? Odin? Zeus? The Invisible Pink Unicorn?
Sure as hell wasn't the typical western god, because that creation story is totally wrong.
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Old 02-10-2019, 07:05 PM
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Why do so many people have no problem with time going off forever in one direction, but not the opposite direction?
Assuming its even linear from any perspective but ours.
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Old 02-10-2019, 07:07 PM
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So what's in between atoms then if there is no such thing as nothing?
The froth of virtual particles is sub-atomic. There is no space it is not in.



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Yes but "space" that has virtual particles is a framework. It's not nothing. Why would it ever exist?

This is one of the true impossibilities about existence. From the way we see the universe, there's a framework of space out there. But how can it ever exist?

There should be nothing. No universe, no space, nothing at all. Because in order for there to be something there had to be something first to create that something. Which is impossible.
This is what scientists are now saying is completely wrong. Earlier visions of the world always included a "nothing" and then declared than something could not emerge from nothing. But "nothing" appears to be impossible, a ill-defined concept that has no physical reality. There is always "something" and therefore no paradoxes about something emerging from it can occur.

If your assumptions are wrong then no solid foundations can be built on them. Stop assuming "nothing" exists and then everything changes.

Bottom line: throw "nothing" out of your vocabulary. It's the use of "nothing" that's nonsensical.
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Old 02-10-2019, 07:11 PM
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God created heaven and earth
"I have no need for that hypothesis."
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Old 02-10-2019, 07:44 PM
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God created heaven and earth
This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move.
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Old 02-10-2019, 09:03 PM
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It's time to retire this question as the OP phrases it. The latest scientific understanding is that nothingness is impossible. Quantum uncertainty means that every cubic inch of space is a constant froth of virtual particles which on rare occasion can become "real." That makes for a base of virtual energy that can produce matter without violating any conservation laws.
I would argue that this has to be qualified with some context. "Nothingness" is impossible under the physical laws of the universe as we understand them because quantum uncertainty leads to the hypothesis of random quantum fluctuations in the vacuum. But this is clearly a specific property of space itself, which also exhibits other properties like time and the relativistic effects of spatial separation, and space and its physical laws only began to come into being at the Big Bang. The virtual-particle idea is only an analogy to the BB singularity, which in our terms of reference really did arise from nothing. Alternatively, under Stephen Hawking's no-boundary proposal (the Hartle-Hawking model), the BB did not "arise" at all, but is a steady state in "imaginary time". Either one leads to the same philosophical quandary that is outside the realm of the known physical laws of the universe.
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Old 02-10-2019, 09:18 PM
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I would argue that this has to be qualified with some context. "Nothingness" is impossible under the physical laws of the universe as we understand them because quantum uncertainty leads to the hypothesis of random quantum fluctuations in the vacuum. But this is clearly a specific property of space itself, which also exhibits other properties like time and the relativistic effects of spatial separation, and space and its physical laws only began to come into being at the Big Bang. The virtual-particle idea is only an analogy to the BB singularity, which in our terms of reference really did arise from nothing. Alternatively, under Stephen Hawking's no-boundary proposal (the Hartle-Hawking model), the BB did not "arise" at all, but is a steady state in "imaginary time". Either one leads to the same philosophical quandary that is outside the realm of the known physical laws of the universe.
I've read numerous accounts that say that the universe is a fluctuation of the vacuum energy. In that case, space as we know it is not a prerequisite.

An example: A Mathematical Proof That The Universe Could Have Formed Spontaneously From Nothing. The "nothing" in the headline is of course the old fashioned colloquial usage.
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Old 02-10-2019, 10:22 PM
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I've read numerous accounts that say that the universe is a fluctuation of the vacuum energy. In that case, space as we know it is not a prerequisite.

An example: A Mathematical Proof That The Universe Could Have Formed Spontaneously From Nothing. The "nothing" in the headline is of course the old fashioned colloquial usage.
The idea that the Big Bang was one random quantum fluctuation in a multiverse bubbling and frothing with such phenomena is decades old. But as I see it in my simple mind, one either has to believe that this multiverse obeys the same fundamental quantum laws as ours, or else the "quantum fluctuations" thing is merely an analogy, an attempt to conceptualize the mathematical solution to the Wheeler-DeWitt field equation in the paper your linked article describes. Why should we believe that the uncertainty principle, or anything at all about quantum mechanics, hold true in some arbitrary super-universe outside our own?

For example, the quantum fluctuations that we hypothesize necessarily take place in real space and time, and if the space happens to be in an intense gravitational field near a black hole, then one of those virtual particles may become instantiated as a real particle if its partner, which was supposed to annihilate it, is removed from causality quickly enough by disappearing across the event horizon. There are lots of assumptions here about the predicted operation of known physical laws.

The other thing I'll note is that many other solutions to the Wheeler-Dewitt equation have been proposed, one of the most interesting of which is the Hartle-Hawking state, aka the "no-boundary" proposal that I already mentioned. Here, in fact, is the original 1983 paper in which James Hartle and Stephen Hawking develop the no-boundary proposal as a solution to Wheeler-Dewitt. The paper is not a useful intuitive explanation but I'm just pointing out that it was developed from the same underlying theory as the one you linked.
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Old 02-10-2019, 10:39 PM
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Why can't it have always existed? Time is a man made construct to understand the universe, one theory is that everything that is, has and will exist already does.
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Old 02-10-2019, 11:00 PM
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Why can't it have always existed? Time is a man made construct to understand the universe, one theory is that everything that is, has and will exist already does.
Well, it could, if you believe in the multiple membranes and spontaneous creation of new bubble universes theory, or even the bounce theory (i.e. big bang leading eventually to a big crunch, rinse and repeat). If we are talking membranes then it's turtles all the way down...where did the first ones come from? Sort of like the panspermia theory...you are just kicking the first life happening down the road. But as for our universe, the reason they say it stated at a specific instance (and a lot of physicists were not happy this was the case, including old Einstein) is because of observations. We can see the various galaxies and clusters moving apart, even speeding up, and we can look back in time and see the progression backwards to smaller and tighter clusters, even back to the emergence of the first observable stars (just a few hundred thousand years after the big bang, IIRC...or perhaps a few million, drink and age has dimmed my memory). It's not just because of the human construct about time.

As for the OP, which seems like they are asking about how the universe came about and not about consciousness per se, I think the membrane theory, from what little I grasp of it, seems plausible. So does an infinitely dense infinitely small singularity becoming unstable and rapidly expanding out. I like the membrane theory because it makes more sense to me, but I don't even pretend to understand more than a science channel level, probably not even that.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:07 AM
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According to Tegmark, “there is only mathematics; that is all that exists.”
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:10 AM
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It's time to retire this question as the OP phrases it. The latest scientific understanding is that nothingness is impossible. Quantum uncertainty means that every cubic inch of space is a constant froth of virtual particles which on rare occasion can become "real." That makes for a base of virtual energy that can produce matter without violating any conservation laws.

Gotcha questions don't work until you have a sufficiently firm understanding of the subject not to be embarrassed by instant demolition of your false beliefs.
It's really this sort of answer that has to be retired. Quantum uncertainty doesn't really entail anything about virtual particles becoming real; virtual particles are a mathematical bookkeeping device that only exist in approximations to a full theory that help us calculate stuff.

All the sort of 'universe from nothing'-arguments in physics going back to Edward Tryon really start the same way, by defining some origin state as 'nothing' and then going on from there. But of course, no state is 'nothing'; there is no 'nothing'-state. The vacuum state in a quantum field theory is just that, not nothing. It has properties, such as a nonzero energy expectation value; nothing doesn't have that. Indeed, it's literally meaningless to say it does. Likewise with 'nothing is unstable'.

Besides, even if these ideas were sensible, they would fall short of the goal of explaining the universe: as soon as you rely on the laws of quantum mechanics, those themselves become explananda. So if quantum mechanics truly were to explain how 'something can come from nothing', that would just shift the question to 'why quantum mechanics?'.
  #47  
Old 02-11-2019, 01:29 AM
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The intellectually honest answer is we don't know.

But let's be clear it's a double don't know: We don't know whether nothing ever became something. Maybe our universe is part of a multiverse that has always existed?

But if there is a definite start point to explain, then we don't have that explanation yet, and it's hard to see how there could be one. We can't start with "Quantum mechanics says..." when we're asking the metaphysical question of why anything exists at all, including physical laws.

The OP mentions consciousness. Well, there's no mystery there: it evolved as a feature of intelligent life; it's something brains do.
Lots we don't understand about consciousness, but not how it originated.
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Old 02-11-2019, 01:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kamaski View Post
God created heaven and earth
Okay, who created God?

Oh, God always was? Why does the universe need a cause if God doesn't?
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Old 02-11-2019, 02:51 AM
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It's possible the universe always existed.

It's possible that it's impossible for there to be nothing. Which must mean that matter is infinite. Which is certainly difficult to grasp.

But even if it's impossible for there to be nothing due to sub-atomic rules, at some level there will be no explanation for WHY those rules exist. It is impossible to keep passing the buck. At some point, things exist for no reason, God or no God.
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Old 02-11-2019, 03:21 AM
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What exactly does the OP mean by consciousness? Some type of self-awareness? Consciousness as modern day humans know it? Can animals have consciousness?
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