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  1. #1
    Senior Member Robopop's Avatar
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    Default Did quantum fluctuations cause the big bang

    For many years I have thought about what role quantum mechanics played in the creation of our universe, as many physicist think that quantum fluctuations caused the big bang.

    I have the idea that even quantum effects has to have spacetime for it to exist. When physicist say nothing existed before the big bang, they really mean nothing at all. We can't even think or wonder about nothingness because our brains work IN spacetime and we can only think in terms of cause and effect. It seems to me that without spacetime, even quantum physics becomes meaningless to explain the sudden appearance of the universe from a singularity. I don't think we can use quantum physics alone to explain something which came from nothing. Now I know there are alot of other alternative theories like string theory and the many worlds idea of quantum physics, but the idea of true nothingness interests me the most.

    Who really knows what the universe is really like. I think the further we explore our universe, the harder it is going to be for us to match or picture it to our experiences. I think we are on but the surface of a BIG ocean.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robopop View Post
    Who really knows what the universe is really like. I think the further we explore our universe, the harder it is going to be for us to match or picture it to our experiences. I think we are on but the surface of a BIG ocean.
    The quantum is the smallest anything can be, and as we are much, much bigger, we only intuitively understand things our size.

    So we can only understand the quantum counter-intuitively using mathematics. So of course it makes no intuitive sense to us.

    The same with the universe which is as big as anything can be, and is much, much bigger than us, so we can only understand the universe counter-intuitively using general relativity.

    So for 200,000 years we have understood the world intuitively but all of a sudden in the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th Centuries we started to think counter-intuitively, not only in quantum mechanics and general relativity, but also in politics, economics, biology and science in general.

    This is so extraordinary we can't help wondering why.

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    What is, is. Arthur Schopenhauer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robopop View Post
    When physicist say nothing existed before the big bang, they really mean nothing at all.
    From what I understand, that's wrong.
    INTJ | 5w4 - Sp/Sx/So | 5-4-(9/1) | RLoEI | Melancholic-Choleric | Johari & Nohari

    This will not end well...
    But it will at least be poetic, I suppose...

    Hmm... But what if it does end well?
    Then I suppose it will be a different sort of poetry, a preferable sort...
    A sort I could become accustomed to...



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    Senior Member Robopop's Avatar
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    Well the opinion amoung physicist is varied, but some physicist DO think there was nothing before the big bang because all that exist is contained within spacetime. Some physicist also think time itself did not have a beginning but disolves into quantum foam once you get to the instant the big bang happened.

    I do not personally believe this and I try to keep an open mind on this because really, there probalby is no way to know what caused the big bang with any good amount of certainty. But physcist can get indirect evidence, like with experiments being conducted at the large hardon collider.

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    Senior Member wildcat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robopop View Post
    For many years I have thought about what role quantum mechanics played in the creation of our universe, as many physicist think that quantum fluctuations caused the big bang.

    I have the idea that even quantum effects has to have spacetime for it to exist. When physicist say nothing existed before the big bang, they really mean nothing at all. We can't even think or wonder about nothingness because our brains work IN spacetime and we can only think in terms of cause and effect. It seems to me that without spacetime, even quantum physics becomes meaningless to explain the sudden appearance of the universe from a singularity. I don't think we can use quantum physics alone to explain something which came from nothing. Now I know there are alot of other alternative theories like string theory and the many worlds idea of quantum physics, but the idea of true nothingness interests me the most.

    Who really knows what the universe is really like. I think the further we explore our universe, the harder it is going to be for us to match or picture it to our experiences. I think we are on but the surface of a BIG ocean.
    Space is of spacetime. Vacuum does not event. Outside does not place.

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    Courage is immortality Valiant's Avatar
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    The most incomprehensible things are often the most true. That first led me to believe that the hypothesis of nothingness might hold some water.
    Universe, as we guess, is infinitely big. You can't even measure it in size.
    The universe, as far as most scientists go, has always existed.

    There's the wrench in the cogs that makes me believe that the discussion itself is fun but invalid.
    How can there ever have been nothingness if something has always existed?

    Mightier than the tread of marching armies is the power of an idea whose time has come

  7. #7
    Senior Member Robopop's Avatar
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    If spacetime did begin with the big bang, it is meaningless to ask what was before. The other thing is, was the big bang caused or uncaused, because quantum physics points to uncaused. This idea that every event must have a cause is used as an argument for a unmoved mover and is seated in humanity's pattern seeking ability.

    But we can't expect all phenomenon to match our intuitive experience, most people in general will have a very hard time accepting a universe with no cause and purpose.

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    We live in an expanding universe. And wherever we stand, the universe is expanding from this point.

    The buck stops here, or rather the Big Bang starts here.

    This is entirely counter-intuitive, so how can we imagine or understand it?

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    Priestess Of Syrinx Katsuni's Avatar
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    True nothingness is a nice concept, but honestly it's unlikely to be true.

    Most likely, the closest yeu can get is a zero sum dormant state of matter/energy that has no properties until affected by something.

    For example, a string in string theory with no vibration essentially may as well not exist, despite that it's still physically present, it has no baring on the world around it, and is affected by nothing else.

    Even if this's true though, then SOMETHING must've created the original big bang... which the current theory is that a large brane bumped into another which caused the ripple of energy to be applied to so many strings at once.

    In this case, however, it assumes that branes, strings, and so on, all existed beforehand. There was no case of there ever being "nothing".

    Unfortunately, the human brain is not capable of grasping the concept of 'infinity' or 'nothing'. Death is beyond our perception, as is eternity, we just can't rationally understand these two concepts.

    Even "god" really doesn't solve the problem, it just puts a face and a name on infinity, but doesn't actually fix the problem that it's STILL infinity. Something existed before the universe and always existed forever at all times.

    There's also the matter that spacetime would exist outside of the level of which we can perceive when considering 11th dimensional physics, as in a brane would still exist within spacetime, even if the universe upon that brane had no set timespace itself yet. It's a pain in the butt to explain and I don't fully understand it myself which's probably a large contributing factor to that XD

    In any case, if nothing existed, then nothing could've affected it. We exist, for all intents and purposes, as far as we're aware, in a zero-sum universe. Anything made, creates an inverse which's unmade. If yeu add energy, yeu take it from somewheres else. Yeu can't create, yeu can only move, shift, reposition.

    In which case, everything was laying flat, and calm, and essentially was "nothing", having no properties, no energy, no matter, no form, no shape, no effects... and then something poked it, and when that first thing got poked, it bumped into the thing next to it, which bumped into the thing next to that, cascading into a massive chain of effects, which was the big bang; an explosion is just a massive burst of energy in a short time, which is whot would've happened there.

    Problem is... whot caused the poke? Regardless of whot the origin was, it was something that's outside of our universe's space-time, and it's capable of affecting it. It may or may not be god or a higher power, or it may or may not be a brane bumping into another one. Regardless, we're stuck dealing with the fact that SOMETHING existed before our universe did, and we're left back sitting on the problem of infinity. Something has always existed, and that concept is beyond our capacity to truly grasp XD

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    The Big Bang is a story that scientists have written as a means to explain the universe before them in the most concise and verifiable manner they could manage. As an explanation, it arises from the question of "how?" a question scientists would never cease to answer with the most fanciful tales if they hadn't taken up Occam's Razor (which is the one thing that separates science from mythology). Rather than keep asking "how?" which is always a possible question and one that often yields fruitless results, one should ask "what?" To ask "what?" is to stop writing the tale and consider the act of storytelling itself. "What are scientists doing, and what am I doing when I entertain their ideas?" Answer that question--and you already know the answer--and you've found the origin of something even more original than the Big Bang or anything that came before it.

    To put it another way, an explanation does not find its root in further explanation, though further explanation is always wanted. An explanation finds its root in the act of explaining itself, which is an act that also begs for a root.
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