The size of the known universe has been estimated to the best of science’s ability. But the universe sits in space. That’s like measuring the diameter of an orange in a fruit bowl. How big is the bowl? The bowl sits in the kitchen. What is beyond the boundary of space? Are these concepts too abstract for human to comprehend, and that’s why we have God?
There need not be anything unusual about the space outside the observable universe- it could go on forever, essentially the same as the tiny portion we can see.
Or, it might be completely different- because it is unobservable, we don’t, and can’t know.
Some ideas about this were presented in a recent Scientific American article
which is a mind-boggling ride in itself- you are welcome to interpolate God at any point in this catalogue of unobservables.
SF worldbuilding at
The consensus among physicists for quite some time has been that space and time are part of the universe. This is contrast to the intuitive notion that space and time are a background on which the universe lives, which is what you seem to be assuming.
Thus the term Universe refers to all matter, energy, space and time that could conceivably ever affect each other. (It still leaves room to talk about other universes, but by definition they would be unreachable and have no influence on anything in our Universe.)
The universe does not sit in space. It is space. Or rather space is a part of It.
When talking about the size, it is in reference to the known universe or the observable universe. If it has been, say, 20 billion years since the Big Bang, then we could at most observe things 20 billion light years away and thus the known universe would be an a sphere at most 40 billion light years in diameter. (For practical reasons, it is actually less than this.)
Well, according to all we’ve learned so far… Yes!
I thought about space being part of the universe. How big was space at the big bang? Same size as it is now? I’m not really taking space as being independant from the universe. The universe is constantly changing size (currently expanding), is space doing the same thing?
Think of a planet on the edge of the universe that is populated with beings similar to us. To the right, they look across the universe. To the left, what do they see?
The universe is spacetime. Before spacetime there was no universe. The universe expands itself; and as it does so spacetime expands.
Space at the big bang was essentially the same size as the big bang.
The universe is expanding, and space is expanding at the same rate. People usually use the analogy of someone blowing up a balloon. Imagine being a 2 dimensional being living on the surface of an expanding balloon. You would look around you, and see everything else moving away from you, because space (surface of the balloon) is expanding. Things that are further away would be moving away from you quicker because there is more space between you. This is exactly what we see when we look out at the universe.
Also - if you walked around the balloon for long enough, you would eventually come back to where you started. So wherever you are, it looks like you’re in the center. It doesn’t make any sense to talk about a planet being on the edge of the universe - everywhere is the centre.
It does not. As others have said, the universe IS space. I think you’re defining the universe as just galaxies and stars and things. That’s not right - most of the universe is empty space.
Measuring a planet, or a solar system, would be comparable to this. Planets, solar systems, comets… they have finite sizes and exist WITHIN space (that is, the universe). The universe doesn’t ‘sit inside’ of something larger.
There is no boundary of space, and the ideas are not abstract - they just don’t exist. The universe is infinite in size, and continuing to expand, and that’s that. There’s no end. And before you ask - it’s not expanding INTO anything, either, because there is nothing for it to expand into. The balloon analogy covers that.
At the time of the big bang, all space was contained WITHIN the big bang (well, the thing that blew up IN the big bang, that is). I’ve heard various estimates of size, all very tiny. I think you’re picturing the big bang as an explosion in empty space that filled up the space. That’s not how it happened - the space didn’t exist before the big bang.
You may not be intentionally doing so, but yes, you are.
Yes, it’s expanding.
There IS no edge of the universe. Something that is infinitely large doesn’t have edges. If it had edges, it would END, thus meaning it isn’t infinite. Same reason there is no “center of the universe.”
Unless I’m mistaken, this runs contrary to many, if not most, accounts for how the universe behaves. The universe is not infinite, it is finite. However, it may also be (probably is?) unbounded, just as the fabled baloon surface is finite yet unbounded.
According to an article I read some months ago, a new idea being seriously floated (or perhaps an old idea that is just now receiving serious consideration) is that the “shape” of the universe is more analogous to the surface of a torus than a balloon. In particular, it may be “longer” in one direction than in another. Practically speaking, the effective space occupied by the universe would be like a rectangular prism, and when you fly out through one face, you appear back at the opposite face.
Was that deliberate?
Wow! Cool! But weird.
Er… I dunno. Was it clever and witty?
Actually, no. I guess my love of bad puns just subconsciously affected my word choice.
>What is beyond the boundary of space?
Z, or as some like to call it, Z@
HI I HAVE RECENTLY TEAMED UP WITH A FRIEND ON EP WORDKEEPER WHO SAID HE WAS INTERESTED IN DRAWING A MAP OF THE UNIVERSE OUR CONVERSATION WENT LIKE THIS
quincybiggs Jan 11, 2011 9:35 AM
think about this if the universe is infinite that means that everything that has ever been thought of can one day be realized or even exist somewhere in the future hyper space travel robots that build cities planets to be mined and colonized parrellel universes which fold in upon themselves . only its hard to ever realise these stuff we have all these ideas and things to be accomplished but never will because we think our consciousness is separate from the universal consciousness . i am black and live in a third world country. people look down on you for simple stupid reasons as that no one could ever see a person like me of any worth i am hounded and persecuted by my fellow man and woman my mails are stolen and confiscated by the people in my community. and i am kept in a simulated prison i kid u not but reading your post gave me hope i have compassion for black people all over the world i hope that one day they can stop hating and killing each other that the hardness will be removed from there mind and they will allow the ones who want to be free and contribute to the human race to do so
WordKeeper Jan 11, 2011 5:56 PM
It not only means that all of that CAN happen, but it IS happening right now! Since the universe is infinite and is made of time and space, that means that since time is forever, there is always a place with a more distant past than ours, and since space is forever, there’s always a place for these advanced worlds to be kept. So right now, there is a world where (for example) you are part robot and shoot lightning from your hands that opens portals to alternate dimensions where people go to mine resources. But where this world is could be anywhere! Maybe you would have to shrink down until you were on a particle smaller than any atom, and once you were small enough you’d see that it was a planet where all of that was happening. Maybe you’d have to go to a world so large that when you got there, our solar system would be smaller than an atom.
Everything is happening right now, and it’s all just a matter of how much of it you’re able to see and feel at once without overloading your mind and soul. Since God and the Universe are total and complete, they have everything all at once, and never lose it- but your life is made of lessons to be experienced, and if it would not help you to go past Earth and its daily trials, then you never would. Some people never stop thinking about themselves, and they will wander through life on and on while it keeps telling them to think of others. I wonder if there are people out there who never get it- who actually wander in confusion and hate for all of time. I’d rather not believe in a Hell like that, but I believe it is possible.
I’m sorry that your living conditions are so bad. I didn’t realize that Jamaica had so much hardship in it. I’m American, and here we always picture Jamaica as a pretty calm and relaxed place. But then again most Americans only go to resorts in Jamaica, so they don’t know what’s really happening. Most of the ghettos here are a lot like that- brother killing brother, people spying on you and stealing from you, etc.
What do you mean by a “simulated prison”?
Do you think that Universal Consciousness will suddenly come upon us soon, as so many people think? Many signs seem to point to the Second Coming, but it being a visitation of pure spirit, and not in the form of a man. Like a wave of God’s essence will wash over the Earth and bring everyone quickly to the truth of themselves, whether it is ugly or beautiful, and whether they are ready for it or not. Part of me wishes this to happen so that I can watch the struggles end more quickly, because I think it’s my job to help end them. On the other hand, I don’t want it to happen because I believe (maybe too much) in people and hope that maybe we can all wise up and work it out on our own if given time. But humanity has wasted much of its time, so far, and who’s to say if it could change so greatly as to save itself from itself any time soon…
Hope to hear from you, Quincy- it’s good to know that a soul like yours is out there across the Gulf. I look forward to any and all words from you.
P.S. I am working on a comprehensive portrait of the Universe right now. It’s going to include everything that we can possibly know about infinity, intelligence, and how they work together, and I guarantee that the principles I’m setting down will be able to improve and correct any idea in any science that has existed before. This will take me several years, but I have already been getting the information for many years beforehand. If you wouldn’t mind, I’d like to send some of the lists of my conclusions to you while I work on it, because I think you would understand and could help quite a bit.
Also, where are you getting those pieces that you’ve been posting? I read some very large discussions on God that you put up that all seemed like they were by a certain author (forgot the name), and haven’t been able to find any more of it online.
quincybiggs Jan 12, 2011 3:33 PM
the information is from me brought into the corporeal world from the universal consciousness i am you could say a conduit for universal energy (a child of the universal consciousness) that post about God took me months to complete but you are one of the handful to say so thanks coming from you that means alot they are taking me of the computer at the library tomorrow i will finish telling you more
quincybiggs Jan 13, 2011 11:18 AM
some of the post that were put up were by a friend of mine who ask me to post them up for him his name is devan dawes or dahvid as he likes to be called i could post more up if you want to see it . but the ten things about god were by me . as for making that map of the universe imagine this imagery a donut that tilted with infinite universes moving along side each other . folding in and upon themselves now the thing that outlays the donut i am kind of stuck at that point i would love to keep this up but as strange as it sounds doing stuff like this is what i have always dreamed about . u know the unknown !
WordKeeper Jan 14, 2011 10:03 AM I definitely believe you’re a conduit.
Yeah, if there’s more of that stuff to post up I’d love it.
The donut pouring in and out of itself is true, but that’s where it gets tricky. It’s a donut made of light (I bet you know exactly what I’m talking about). But the universe can’t be the donut, because a donut is a shape and shapes have sides and sides mean boundaries and there ARE NO boundaries. So you float up, farther and farther from the donut and go through emptiness into something new, it grows and grows as you get farther back, and eventually you pull back so far… that there’s another donut. But now the first donut that seemed like it was everything is barely a speck in the middle of this new one.
But it’s not even a new one- it’s the same donut. That glowing orb of light that so many of us see in visions of God is like a perfect note in a musical scale- as you go up and perfect yourself, you hit it every time you go a certain distance. Since that orb is a place where everything is united, when you reach it, you have not only gone a great distance but it is also like you never left or moved. That’s the paradox- that you travel out in an infinite number of directions, but they’re all inside of this one place, and if you try to grasp the nature of the place too long, you will have to leave it to explore the worlds within, again.
Having seen the Light Donut of total unity before, the only thing I long for is to get back to it and take as many people as possible with me. And that seems to be our mission, because that place was the closest thing to heaven I could ever imagine. It’s like to get someone to be holy, good, and wise you have to sneak them past a guard in themselves. An armed guard representing their laziness, pride, and self-ignorance. The idea of really having to find a way to save people from themselves is strange. Telling the world that it has tricked itself, and must listen to our promises of a better world- telling them that the road will be hard but fulfilling. So many people hate hard roads.
The soul pours into the mind, and the mind commands the body. The mind constantly decides whether it wants to listen to the soul, or just serve its own interests. This can only last so long, though, because the soul never stops knocking at the mind’s door, so eventually it must be let in or one will go truly crazy trying to live a life where they act like they can’t hear that knock.
I think there is only one soul, and Mind is a force that splits it, gives names to it, and molds parts of it so that they feel as if they are the whole.
quincybiggs Jan 14, 2011 2:49 PM you make valid points through out your anylisis of what i said but maybe thats the common misconception that has plagued mankind that the universes has no boundaries . i am going up against centuries old beliefs here but what if the donut universe doesn’t require our need to ascertain the notion that it has no boundaries. just stay with me for a moment is it possible that the donut encomppasses all of creation meaning universes galaxies alternate demensions and to this present day is still expanding right this moment as we speak and your solution to the boundaries querry clued me in on something. the donut universe is getting doesn’t really hass boundaries since space would always be present for it to grow and expand more and more . all theory of course no proof but the outside of the donut universe could be like a say anti-universe. that also folds in upon itself acting as a womb for trhe universe forming perfect equilibrium
WordKeeper Jan 15, 2011 12:21 PM It’s hard for me to imagine it not being infinite. If space is like water and life is like motion, then imagine how water ripples. The ripple starts with very tight but large waves, which spread out and eventually get smaller and smaller, to the point where you can hardly see them any more but they are still there- becoming such tiny waves as their magnitude lessens that you may say there isn’t even any motion out at the edge, but there is. It’s just an imperceptible motion.
If we lived inside one of those ripples, we could easily say “there is the one ripple, and it keeps expanding.” But when we’d move out past those imperceptibly small waves, we’d eventually hit the small waves of another ripple that started somewhere else, and then move into the bigger waves near the center and see that it IS a whole nother ripple, just like the one that we thought was everything.
It was once said that if you kept cutting the distance between yourself and a wall in half, you would never touch the wall. This means that there is already an infinite shrinking world between you and any object. Even the infinitely small is still the infinite.
The anti-universe is a good point, but I think that it’s something that interacts both outside of and WITHIN the donut. In the donut, everything is pulled in a million directions. Imagine being sucked into a black hole. This attractive force pulls you in and warps and shrinks you, but at the same time you would collide with a lot of other things being pulled into it, so that would create little reactions- explosions of energy, which would quickly shoot out away from the black hole, but then be sucked back in, which would create more reactions. If the universe is constantly expanding, then the anti-universe is constantly trying to pull it back together. Their forces are balanced, though, so I picture the expansion and the contraction feeding off of each other in a constant loop that creates new versions of things. I think that possibly the ENERGY of the universe is finite, but I think that it keeps changing to create every possible existence.
But how could the energy be finite if it keeps rippling out forever?..
quincybiggs Jan 18, 2011 11:48 AM you’re kind of missing the point the ripples are there but they are also not there at the same time because even though the universe is compromised of all possibilities within itself there is also the possibility for the ripple not to be there at the same time . now back to my imagery the donut universe is there surrounded by the anti- universe so you have a donut within a donut the anti universe acts as the host to the donut universe since the anti universe bends and fold in and upon itself it acts as the womb or mother or host or symbiote any word can be used here to suit a persons level of understanding . SINCE BOTH UNIVERSES ARE IN EQUILIBRIUM WITH EACH OTHER THE UNIVERSE HOW I SEE IT HAS NO BOUNDARIES!!! BUT SEPARATE THEY ARE FINITE!!! now i think my map has been explained to you. its up to you to draw the map, i would very much love to see it. if you need help or further assistance you can call me so we can talk one on one . i hope i have been of help to you. your in america where your voice can be heard and recognized further than i. i advise you to do something with this these ideas in my head must go somewhere must do some good must illuminate you can go forth now don’t let this be forgotten
quincybiggs Jan 21, 2011 10:13 AM i have that effect on people . or maybe you get what a simulation prison really is
WordKeeper Jan 22, 2011 11:33 AM Not quite yet. Anyway, no effect had- I was actually really happy with the points you made in that message and have spent the last week contemplating on and off the fact that everything must NOT exist at some point, or in some way. I’m not sure I’ve ever looked at it that way but it’s true. My plan this whole time has been to call you today since it’s the only day when my phone calls are free. If that number is right, expect to hear from me before nightfall (then again I don’t know when nightfall is, in the prison).
- quincybiggs Jan 22, 2011 11:46 AM thank you anytime after nighfall will be spectacular and you’re answer did alot to quiet the doubts that i had in my mind the map could not have been done without your input i was wonder if you would be okay with me posting some of this on ep a simulation prison is a place where you want to leave but you can’t because of forces beyond your control .like suppose you were the most brilliant person of your species or group the people with more power than you would sabotage every move that you make to keep you prisoner to thier country steal your letter spit at you wherever you go call you names all in all giving you (me) the illusion of freedom thats what a (simulation prison) is get it
WordKeeper Jan 22, 2011 12:33 PM Yeah, post whatever you want. To hide any truths you or I or we find from the community would be to rob everyone of opportunities to grow and understand. To those that have ears, let 'em hear.
Sounds hellish. Is there any way out? Perhaps not an easy way, but any way at all?
quincybiggs Jan 25, 2011 10:54 AM yeah the mind
Zombies… IN SPAAAACE!
Congratulations, moonphaser! You are able to copy a large post from physicsforums.com, a galactical accomplishment. Unfortunately, this thread is older than the Universe, and what’s more, your tldr post is impossible to read. Would you like to sum it up for us?
One would presume that it is actually much bigger. We can see a sphere 40 b light years in diameter, but odds are we are not the center of the universe. Well, the rest of you aren’t. Some jerk 20 billion light years away sees a different sphere and thinks he’s the center.
Your link doesn’t extend across the barrier.
It extended across space… but not time. After seven years the link has been lost in time. But in strange aeons even death may die. Perhaps the link will return to us some die like unto this thread.
Eventually, the back of their heads. Like an ant crawling on that balloon; if he aims right, he’ll keep returning to his original spot, from behind.
What does Cthulhu want with a starship?