Text and Photography by Harvey Lloyd http://www.harveylloyd.com
This blog is part of a series entitled
Secrets of Eternal Youth
“Where’s the evidence?” Atheist Richard Dawkins shouts at believers in God or an intelligent designer. The theory of the Big Bang is a theory, no proof or verifiable evidence, and it rests on an increasingly shaky foundation. With the advent of quantum mechanics, now well over a hundred years ago, the idea of a Big Bang became ludicrous. Like all dogma from the church or scientists, it is was and is too deeply rooted in the scientific psyche to be dropped.
I take my stand in a universe rapidly growing larger, ruled by quantum indeterminacy and entanglement. It stretches into an infinity that only the quantum processor rigged brain inside our skulls can begin to understand. We humans, the anthropic regurgitation from the copious belly and bosom of GAIA, mother earth, examine everything. If you deeply believe anything I am proud to say you are wrong and/or don’t know what the hell you are talking or thinking about!
In our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God.”
Okay, what did Aeschylus know? Cosmologist Sean Carroll gave a TED talk Distant time and the hint of a multiverse. He said “The universe is really big. We live in a galaxy, the Milky Way Galaxy. There are about a hundred billion stars in the Milky Way Galaxy. Every one of these (little blobs) is a galaxy roughly the size of our Milky Way — a hundred billion stars in each of those. There are approximately a hundred billion galaxies in the observable universe. . .”
“What you have to think about is we have a universe with a hundred billion galaxies, and a hundred billion stars each. At early times, those hundred billion galaxies were squeezed into a region about this big – (literally a pinpoint) — at early times.
Lloyd: Nonsense! We are talking about virtual reality and quantum physics and metaphysics in which the laws of space and time are entangled in ways not known and operate in femto seconds, a millionth of a trillionth of a second. Quantum mechanics occurs, An Alice in Wonderland slice of the universe too small and quick for we humans to comprehend although we arrogantly and enthusiastically describe it.
Sean Carroll seems to ignore quanta, which may contain universes at quanta scale of femtometer sizes(a millionth of a trillionth of a meter). Could those universes explode into our universe or universes like ours! Let’s see.
“Noble laureate for Quantum Electrodynamics, Richard Feynman says, “For some reason, the universe, at one time, had a very low entropy for its energy content, and since then the entropy has increased. The arrow of time cannot be completely understood until the mystery of the beginnings of the history of the universe are reduced still further from speculation to understanding.”
That’s good. If anyone knows what my favorite physicist Richard is saying, please let me know. (I like Hawking, Einstein, Bohr, Heisenberg, and a few others as well) He also wrote, as is well known, that while a dozen physicists around the world thoroughly understood Einstein’s Relativity, no one including himself understood quantum mechanics. He was wise enough to know that two thirds of our civilizations run on it, from transistors to lasers, etc. The less you think you know, the wiser you become. Richard passed on too soon. He is missed.
Here’s Carroll: “In the 1970s, Stephen Hawking told us that a black hole, even though you think it’s a black sinkhole, actually emits radiation when you take into account quantum mechanics. The curvature of space-time around the black hole brings to life the quantum mechanical fluctuation, and the black hole radiates.
“A precisely similar calculation by Hawking and Gary Gibbons showed that if you have dark energy in empty space, then the whole universe radiates. The energy of empty space brings to life quantum fluctuations . . . So what this means is that the universe is like a box of gas that lasts forever. Well what is the implication of that?”
Lloyd: Too much gas for me but let’s give the devil his due. Carroll, wisely, is using fuzzy physics to dance around the bizarre implications of black holes, quanta and quanta fluctuations. Since nobody understands quantum mechanics, have a ball Sean, nonsense and sense are entangled. If we are such things as dreams are made on, dream on. Quanta remain a mystery that even Einstein gave up on,
Einstein spent half his life trying to disprove quantum mechanics, and finally said, “All the fifty years of conscious brooding have brought me no closer to answer the question, “What are light quanta?” Of course today every rascal thinks he knows the answer, but he is deluding himself.
Carroll goes on: “. . . the stars around us will use up their nuclear fuel, they will stop burning. They will fall into black holes. We will live in a universe with nothing in it but black holes. That universe will last 10 to the 100 years — a lot longer than our little universe has lived. The future is much longer than the past.”
(Lloyd: Ten to the hundred years is an unimaginable number, might as well call it infinity although that is only a small quantum fraction of eternity. We are talking of a time scale from femtoseconds, a millionth of a trillionth of a second, at the quantum level, to God’s time which cannot be measured. We live between the macro galactic universe and the femto quantum universe. Aren’t we lucky, even though we don’t know what the hell is going on in either of them, and even less down here where we anthropic apes play god.)
“But even black holes don’t last forever. They will evaporate, and we will be left with nothing but empty space. That empty space lasts essentially forever. (However,) there’s only a finite number of things that can possibly happen in the universe. They all happen over a period of time equal to 10 to the 10 to the 120 years.
(Lloyd: Another a number so large as to be unimaginable, infinity, eternity if you like, Carroll likes big numbers, a wise, if entangled man. We are all entangled with each other and the entire universe which fits in with the TAO and Eastern philosophy along with Native American.)
“. . . why are we born in the first 14 billion years of it, in the warm, comfortable afterglow of the Big Bang? Why aren’t we in empty space? You might say, “Well there’s nothing there to be living,” but that’s not right. You could be a random fluctuation out of the nothingness. Why aren’t you? maybe the Big Bang is not the beginning of the universe. .. Maybe the universe comes out of a universal chicken.”
Lloyd: There was no Big Bang! Where’s the evidence? Background radiation from the past is a poor substitute for the missing evidence. Hurrah for the big chicken and its billions of galactic eggs. I’d just as soon come out from a real barnyard than from the clucking and know it all chattering barnyard much of science and physicists scratch sand muck around in!
“Maybe there is something that naturally, through the growth of the laws of physics, gives rise to universes like ours in low entropy configurations. If that’s true, it would happen more than once; we would be part of a much bigger multiverse.”
Lloyd: Big bang or firecracker, quantum universe, fluctuations, makes no sense, but reality makes no sense either. The laws of quantum mechanics are too radical for our early conditioned brains to accept without fierce opposition. There is no agreement among quantum physicists. At last count one third thought it was pure mathematics, a second third said it was involved in biology, and the third said it was all about light collapsing into multiverses upon viewing.
It may be a colossal game of chance played of a wider field than we can imagine, the Las Vegas of quantum indeterminacy and uncertainty. Yes Einstein, God does play dice, but as Hawking wrote recently, God doesn’t always know where he throws them. Do you?