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Author Topic: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?  (Read 6402 times)

vh

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Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« on: February 22, 2015, 09:16:10 PM »
The canonical answer is "The Big Bang", or some similar cosmologically primordial event. However, this is unsatisfying as the question simply becomes "Where did the big bang come from". If you figure out where the big bang comes from, the chain of questions keeps growing.

Now I suppose there are three cases, which I have sorted by concreteness.

I. An event created itself. Say event A created both the big bang and itself. Then we have a loop and the chain is done. Or event A creates B and the big bang, event B creates C, and C creates A. Now this violates both causality, so it still proves immensely unsatisfying. But is this just our incorrect intuition, or is this loop actually impossible? Logically, it nearly parallels a circular argument -- but not quite, so I don't think it can be ruled out. At the same time, I am uncomfortable with the idea.

II. The "chain" is infinite. Event A causes the big bang, event B causes A, C causes B, D causes C, E causes D ... and so on to infinity. But wait a second, isn't reality already like this? The state of the universe at a given time determines the state of the universe an infinitestimal time later. If I knock over a cup, there are an infinite number of timesteps between my hand pushing and the cup falling. (Assuming time is not discrete) I suspect this has a lot to do with the sizes of infinity (countable vs uncountable), but unfortunately I am not a number theorist. But it gets even more confusing -- is there necessarily time outside this universe? Are events A, B, C, D, E... happening in time? If not, what separates one event from another?

III. Is it possible that the reality exists for no reason at all? This is perhaps the most unsatisfying answer of all.

Darvince

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2015, 10:00:16 PM »
Can you explain more of how reality 'existing for no reason at all' would work? If the big bang was the first event, then that is simply the first event and there was nothing before it?

tuto99

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2015, 01:27:05 AM »
The more I think about the Big Bang Theory, the more I doubt it is true. Idk, I should do some research first.
Maybe the universe was in a more primitive/basic state before stars or even matter formed? Or what if something  created the universes that we don't know about? Like how bones make blood cells or how babies are formed from sex cells that are formed from sex organs. Idk I am just throwing ideas out there. This was thought up while I was typing.
Also, I don't mind that you think about this chen, but maaybe I don't think you should obsess over it to the point it is literally affecting the way you think and live. This is purely philosophical, so you should keep it that way. We're human, both you and I, so it's okay to think about this. But some people actually become depressed or otherwise mentally altered in a negative way. I'm all for this discussion though.

vh

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2015, 04:45:43 AM »
Can you explain more of how reality 'existing for no reason at all' would work? If the big bang was the first event, then that is simply the first event and there was nothing before it?

yeah. i was thinking if causal logic goes out the window, who's to say everything is completely illogical in this pre-universe

Bla

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2015, 10:39:12 AM »
The more I think about the Big Bang Theory, the more I doubt it is true. Idk, I should do some research first.
Looking out you'll see galaxies redshifted, with their velocity proportional to its distance (Hubble's law) - they were closer in the past. Looking almost 13.7 billion years back in time you see very primitive galaxies just forming. The cosmic microwave background is another strong piece of evidence for the Big Bang, being a very red-shifted Planck-curve, exactly what we would expect in an expanding universe where matter went from an opaque state to a transparent when the density and thus temperature fell below 3000K. The distribution of 75% hydrogen and 24% helium in the early/far away universe corresponds exactly to what we would expect if it were formed in a state so dense and hot that fusion could occur. I think it would be a good idea to research if you're in doubt. I took a cosmology course and I can only say there really is strong evidence supporting it.

The Big Bang theory just isn't the 'everything being created from nothing or whatever', it's better to see it as 'the universe started in an extremely dense state where all matter was collected within a tiny tiny area and then expanded', using the physical laws from there we can explain the cosmic microwave background and what we see today, but going further (within a tiny fraction of a second of what could've been a singularity) back they won't work. yet.



I guess as a part of 2 or 3 you could include that the universe (or a multiverse) always existed, but of course we wouldn't know the reason for that either. In any case, it seems clear that there's no way around something existing without really having a justification in our sense. The universe always existed in another form before the Big Bang or it was created in the Big Bang, but if something created it, that needs a justification just as much as the universe itself, and that also needs a justification, and so on, it has to end somewhere. Something apparently doesn't need a justification to exist, and I see no reason why that couldn't be the universe (or multiverse if such a thing is real).

As something to think about for whether something can exist for no reason at all, consider quantum fluctuations
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_fluctuation

TheBoeingCompany812

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2015, 01:00:41 PM »
An event cannot create it's self in our universe, otherwise some very weird stuff would happen. It can't be infinite otherwise it would contradict time and nothing would really happen. I believe that intelligent design can be a likely cause. I mean does a cookie bake it's self?

TheBoeingCompany812

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2015, 01:05:09 PM »
So lets think this in more of an detailed example. For example when a bomb explodes it releases energy (The Big Bang) That energy will convert to heat energy, then smoke and a lot of times fire. (matter, galaxies, other celestial bodies) Now lets go to the beginning, that bomb hit the ground, now the jet dropped the bomb, now before the plane toke off a bomb was loaded into the plane, we can keep going till we get to the very beginning of the bomb, which would be the inventor of the bomb! I can go really far back but lets stop here.

Bla

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2015, 01:08:59 PM »
An event cannot create it's self in our universe, otherwise some very weird stuff would happen. It can't be infinite otherwise it would contradict time and nothing would really happen. I believe that intelligent design can be a likely cause. I mean does a cookie bake it's self?
So lets think this in more of an detailed example. For example when a bomb explodes it releases energy (The Big Bang) That energy will convert to heat energy, then smoke and a lot of times fire. (matter, galaxies, other celestial bodies) Now lets go to the beginning, that bomb hit the ground, now the jet dropped the bomb, now before the plane toke off a bomb was loaded into the plane, we can keep going till we get to the very beginning of the bomb, which would be the inventor of the bomb! I can go really far back but lets stop here.
That just raises another question - where did the designer come from? It doesn't really solve anything.

TheBoeingCompany812

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2015, 01:13:57 PM »
yes, but that relates to OUR UNIVERSE! Our universe is powered by cause and effect, not the nothingness.  According to the Law of Causality  everything that COMES TO BE must have a cause. God didn't really come to be, now that get hard to understand but the Bible tells us that no matter how hard we try or think we will never truly understand him (that's why I stay away from atheism) But I see what you mean.

TheBoeingCompany812

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #9 on: April 21, 2015, 01:15:26 PM »
I guess you could say outergalatic space that holds the universe?

Bla

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2015, 03:20:47 AM »
yes, but that relates to OUR UNIVERSE! Our universe is powered by cause and effect, not the nothingness.
What do you mean by 'nothingness'?

According to the Law of Causality  everything that COMES TO BE must have a cause. God didn't really come to be,
How do you know the universe came to be, but a god exists that didn't?
E.g. what if the cause of the universe, was something else that didn't come to be, but not a god? How do you exclude all other possibilities than a god (and even the biblical one)?

now that get hard to understand but the Bible tells us that no matter how hard we try or think we will never truly understand him (that's why I stay away from atheism) But I see what you mean.
What does it mean to truly understand it? If we can't understand it, why is the bible then even bothering describing it in so many details?
I don't really see how christianity suddenly enters into this. Let's just assume, for the sake of argument, that you're correct in that a god created the universe, deism. How do you go from that, to the christian god?
E.g. the bible gets it wrong from the very start, the universe wasn't created in 6 days, even if you go with it being a "metaphor" for the history of the universe, grass (Genesis 1:12) didn't exist before the Sun (Genesis 1:14), and I guess there's no reason or space to go on debunking the rest of the book. I think it is disproven. Also from a logical perspective: A god simply cannot be all-knowing, all-powerful, all-good, and create our universe, where suffering happens - to millions of innocent people. Nor does it make any sense that it chooses the best way to reveal its 'grand truth' to people on planet Earth, is a human sacrifice (of itself, to itself) and various supernatural events to shepherds in primitive Palestine and rely on a book to pass on the supposedly important information, well-knowing even 2000 years later, it still hasn't penetrated even the majority of people and e.g. Aztecs, Australians, Africans, never had a chance to know about it for centuries. Nor does all the Noah flooding make sense, creating faulty humans, letting them multiply by incest and then killing almost all of them off, because they turn out to be too faulty for your liking. The whole drama between good and evil seems like a kind of odd struggle if the god is omnipotent and good too. I don't see what christianity has to conribute to this discussion at all, it may be reasonable to say deism vs atheism but christianity is simply impossible.

TheBoeingCompany812

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2015, 10:25:09 AM »
And here's what answers all of that.

1. Once we sinned, suffering and etc happened (As this was told in the Bible)

2. Honestly do you think God's time is a 24 hour based rotational period? NO! look at Mars, time there will be different, time everywhere in space is different, so how can you assume 6 days for God is 6 days for us?

3. It's not only that, it make sense that a being of power that we can't understand created the universe. How can you deny something when it specifically says you can't understand it?

Bla

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #12 on: April 23, 2015, 12:33:44 PM »
And here's what answers all of that.
I don't think they really respond to the majority of what I wrote. I think probably most important question of all was how you went from deism to christianity and you didn't answer that at all, but continued to take christianity for granted in your response.

1. Once we sinned, suffering and etc happened (As this was told in the Bible)
You can't say it's true because it was told in the bible. That's like saying Harry Potter existed because it says so in the Harry Potter books.
Anyway I think I already debunked that point in the previous post. It doesn't throw the responsibility away from the god that it blames the suffering on us. When it supposedly created us, it still knew all the consequences. That we would "sin" and all the rest. It could've created a different environment, given us desires not to sin, it could do anything, but it didn't. Therefore it wanted "sins" to occur and suffering to exist, and cannot be all-knowing, all-good and all-powerful.
Also the idea of original sin doesn't make sense, even if it applies only until the equally unlikely virgin birth story with the god having itself crucified in a sacrifice, to itself, as if a sacrifice is in any way necessary to forgive. If a person kills someone and gives birth to a child, can we agree the child is still completely innocent? The god letting evil into a world and affecting all the future of humanity, because of what one person did, is like punishing people for things they have no control over. That's not omni-benevolent at all either.

2. Honestly do you think God's time is a 24 hour based rotational period? NO! look at Mars, time there will be different, time everywhere in space is different, so how can you assume 6 days for God is 6 days for us?
It still gets the order things were 'created' in wrong (for example plants before Sun, as I wrote in the last post) and also plants can't live for long without sunlight so the 'days' can't be that long, as in millions or billions of years separating many of the events that we know from science.
In addition, I don't see any reason why the god would use the word day to mean something else than Earth's day. It sounds more like an excuse to just interpret the bible as vaguely as possible. If a 'day' no longer means 24 hours, but "whatever amount of time that can save this hypothesis", it does become a lot easier to defend. But is it really honest, and can it really save it from all the other flaws, such as the wrong ordering?

3. It's not only that, it make sense that a being of power that we can't understand created the universe.
The bible describes lots of things about its god, for example look at Exodus 4:24-4:26
Quote
4:24 And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the LORD met him, and sought to kill him.
4:25 Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me.
4:26 So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision.
From that you could get an understanding of the god in that thinks chopping skin off children is important, and the rest of the bible is more or less one big story describing in detail how the god doesn't like us eating shellfish, wearing mixed clothes, and so on, many of which it would for reasons beyond me change its mind about after the Jesus event (if it's truly all-knowing, a relative morality like that which it changes its mind about makes no sense, it would've gotten the commandments right from the start). The bible certainly also describes lots of actions attributed to the god as well, which you could get an understanding of it from. Does your god forbid murder, or can you not have an understanding of that?
Considering all those descriptions of the god, I think you saying 'we can't understand it at all' conflicts with the bible, unless I'm not sure what you mean. As the bible often contradicts itself you'd be excused in that, but it doesn't help the case for the bible.

How can you deny something when it specifically says you can't understand it?
Let me write a quick story:
Quote
The Flying Spaghetti Monster created the universe 500,000 years ago. You can never understand the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
Do you deny this?

Gordon Freeman

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #13 on: April 27, 2015, 10:57:53 AM »
I was too late to write
inb4 this becomes a circular argument about the validity of holy books instead of things like Roko's Basilisk, Fermi Paradox, True Vs. False Vacuum, etc.

but
« Last Edit: April 29, 2015, 12:15:24 PM by Gordon Freeman »

TheBoeingCompany812

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #14 on: April 29, 2015, 12:33:27 PM »
Nice picture.

Cryo

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Re: Where does reality come from -- a more satisfying answer?
« Reply #15 on: May 06, 2015, 03:51:57 PM »
i wonder if future generations will be able to comprehend  this question or will they be just as stuck as we are right now.... huh