T Nation

Could It Really Be True?


I so want to believe, but I just don't have the faith of these "scientists."


Here are some teaser lines from the whole article. Do go read the whole thing, it will have you busting your sides out.

Scientists announced today new evidence supporting the theory that the infant universe expanded from subatomic to astronomical size in a fraction of a second after its birth.

(Lots and lots more facts and "spectacular" discoveries.)

The previous data showed that the universe was about 13.7 billion years old. It also revealed that it wasn't until about 200 million years after the Big Bang that conditions were cool enough for the first stars to form. Scientists were also able to conclude that the universe is composed of about 4 percent real matter, about 23 percent dark matter, and about 73 percent dark energy. Nobody actually nows what dark matter or dark energy are, however.

I especially like the last sentence, it really highlights the screwed up thought processes of some scientists. Scientific mythology at its best.

Believing a literal account of Genesis is tame compared to this.


At least scientists will adjust their theories when new evidence becomes available...

shaking head


Yes, that's what this article is a demonstration of- scientists adjusting their theories based on new and spectacular evidence.


Dude, you are just freaking out over a name or label chosen to represent an unsolved piece of a puzzle.

Give them time, the ability to devise and construct experiments, and they will slowly whittle away at the pool of unknowns and become more confident.

That is simply the process.

Anyway, science is great when it powers your computer and Internet connection, your television and DVD player, provides you with optimal post-workout nutrition, helps you drive to work, lets you wage wars with superior weaponry and lets you treat wounds and injuries, but when it clashes with some aspect of your own belief system, then it must be wrong!


like, DUH!


All I got from that article is "we don't know what the fuck happened".

If this entire universe could expand from the theoretical size of a marble in a split second to the size it is now, why would it stop expanding at that rate? It hit something? It ran into the giant fish bowl that we are unaware of? What was that marble existing in to begin with? A marble sack with other marbles? What created the marble? I have also never understood using background detectable energy to determine the age of the universe. If the theory is that the universe is older than originally believed, who is to say there wasn't ANOTHER type of energy that lasted for unmeasureable amounts of time and then burned out and all we are reading is a resonating echo? That would change everything.


Noone's freaking out man.

Like, what kind of experiment would they do for this one?

Please, how are my acceptance of legitimate nutritional science and my skepticism of the above hookie pookie science related?

Why don't you just tell us way you are so pursuaded by the above. Maybe then I too can belieeeeeeve like you.


Im not even going to pretend to know what these cats are talking about. nor what their findings imply. But I do know that I wouldn't dismiss it so quickly. Brian Greene who was not involved in the study but is quoted in the article has a pretty solid resume. Harvard, Oxford, Cornell, and now professor of physics at Columbia. Ive heard him referred to as our generations Einstein more than once.

As far as "hookie pookie" science goes. Most "quantum leaps" of science (pun intended) are met with such scrutiny. Galileo, Copernicus, Newton, all had their ideas dismissed by public and peers alike. If the science surrounding the genesis of the Universe were simple we would all know all the answers by now. It would stand to reason then, that the answers lie in more complex or further reaching suppositions that would then have to weather subsequent scrutiny. I for one am excited about any potential findings on this front.


I don't think my physics knowlege can truly answer your questions, but I would like to try. If I am too far off maybe one of the resident scientist can help me out.

There are a lot of questions that science can't answer yet. That doesn't make the work invalid, it just means we have more work to do. For instance one of the key tenenants of a theory is that it should make predictions. The big bang theory and the inflationary models make predictions of what astronomers should find in the future and they evaluate the theories and hypothosis from that.

The way I understand it, the age of the universe was calculated using the red shift of cepheid variable stars and the wave lenght of the background microwaves. Electromagnetic radiation gets shifted by the doppeler effect simular to sound waves. By calculating the diference between the original wave lenght of the energy released in the big bang and the current wave lenght you can figure some things like the rate of expansion etc.

Bill brysons "a short history of nearly everything" has a great explination of how we got to this point in astrophysics.

I don't know if we will ever answer why there was a big bang or why a singularity formed in the first place.


The theories make predictions and astronomers test these predictions. Also if they make a strong enough paticle collider they can recreate some of the conditions of the early universe. If it matches the predictions then the theory becomes further validated.

Einstine's theory of relativity was tested in this way. It made a prediction about the light from a distant star being bent by gravity and this was cconfirmed in an experiment a few years later.


Perhaps the energy that fueled the outward acceleration was used up leaving the matter in the universe at the whim of our curved spacetime? That sounds reasonable to me...but no one really know for sure. In any case, why do you assume it isn't expanding at that rate, or near it, anymore?

Maybe it just existed, in nothingness, for no reason and had no creator. Is that not plausible? Maybe God created it. No one knows...

That's possible, although there's no evidence of that and it would break many of our existing laws of special relativity. There's just no evidence of that being the case, and some evidence otherwise...but really no one knows for sure...


And how do they calculate the wave length of the energy released in th big bang?


Exactly...these findings seem to lend some credibility to inflation theory. These observations are tangible proof of predictions that scientists have made regarding the state of the universe in its infancy.


How could condensed matter that somehow combined all matter into a marble sized confinement exist for no reason? What was it existing in? What compressed all of this matter if it was in a void of nothingness? Wouldn't that "nothingness" have to have so much pressure to form such a thing that expansion at all would be impossible? Who shut off the void?

Like I've said before, it actually would seem to me to require more faith in science that astronomical occurances happen by chance and create this much order from supposed chaos than faith that there was a reason for its creation.


I think that's a place that even Captain Kirk could not get to.

Well, you guys have fun.


It's marbles all the way down.


You are some kind of fanatic. Don't you belieeeeeeeve in SCIENCE? How'd they ever let you graduate from college anyway?


Why does this not surprise me? :slight_smile:

But really I agree, not so much from the existential/hypothetical end, but from the pragmatic end as well. We can't see/detect a planet outside of a couple dozen light years from us. Hell, we're not even sure if there's a tenth planet in our own damn solar system, but we're damned sure that, "the universe is composed of about 4 percent real matter, about 23 percent dark matter, and about 73 percent dark energy"?


The fact that there are difficult questions remaining doesn't mean that you have to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

On another note, there is plenty of room for God to be on the other end of the big bang, assuming that the big bang is the theory that is eventually settled upon.

With or without religion, the fact that an entire incomprehensibly large universe exists... is humbling. How, oh how, did anything ever come to pass, to create matter, to create complex behaviors and laws, to create eventually life, and to create us, with the intelligence to ponder such things.

It is awe inspiring whether you wish to claim it is a work of God or not.

The concept that the laws of physics may have been different at the point in time of creation of the universe shouldn't be hard to imagine.

Am I offering answers? No. Am I amazed that they are devising theories and ways to test those theories? Yes. Do I think the eventual acceptance of a theory such as this precludes God? No.

Science itself, and it's ability to slowly find ways to poke and prod the nature of the universe around it, is simply an amazing process in and of itself. It has nothing to do with faith to simply accept the current theory as the best so far... such that you have a framework for devising tests.

Am I amazed at the ingeniuty of mankind to find and devise ways to answer questions surrounding theories? Absolutely.

For the theologists among you, if God gave us intelligence, don't you think it would be suitable to use it to develop an understanding of his creation? I mean, it's okay if we make mistakes and correct them over time, but wouldn't it make sense that this is what we are supposed to be doing?


Professor X, by God, I couldn't agree with you more.