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IF we can define 'nothing' as an absence of 'everything', can an infinite progression of 'everything' be considered logical?And IF so... can it be considered logical to define 'nothing' as an infinite state?An infinite state of nothing progressing into an infinite state of everything...
How do you define anything, without defining it in terms of something?
If you try to define nothing in terms of something, you no longer have nothing to define.
Apparently converting from zero (which is a finite number) to unlimited (infinite).
Well, if it is possible to define 'everything', then to define a state of nothing as an absence of everything answers your question.
Quote from: Chiral Apparently converting from zero (which is a finite number) to unlimited (infinite).It seems I’m outnumbered, and by experts! However, I understand that there is no absolute agreement among mathematicians as to whether zero should be considered as a natural number. If you define "finite" as having the cardinality of a natural number, and do not consider zero as a natural number, you are, according to this school of thought, justified in considering zero as non-finite.
Is that you attempting to wow me with mathematics Bill?
...An infinite state of nothing infinitely progressing into a state of everything.
The very definition of nothing would first have to be agreed upon,
“Define nothing!” = “standard cop-out”. You are capable of better than that, Mordeth. 
a) It is possible that the Universe is finite in time and "our" Big Bang is the beggining of everything (The Universe). In this scenario, there was no cause (see #2 above) and all of time truly started here.
I read this and I understand it. I have no objection to the first sentence, but the statement “there was no cause” assumes knowledge outside that which you have identified as time. You would need to justify that assumption.
Quote from: Timey Is that you attempting to wow me with mathematics Bill? Far be it from me to attempt such a thing. As a non-mathematician I enter that arena with trepidation, but I like to try to respond, even belatedly, as in this case.
Quote from: Timey ...An infinite state of nothing infinitely progressing into a state of everything.If infinity is not a number, and eternity is not a length of time, and if change requires time, how can you have any progression in infinity/eternity?
"Nothing" is simply a word, and in the context of existence itself becomes a meaningless, undefined concept. The question of non-being is self-contradictory. Why is there something? Do you think there is an object we can call nothing that is nothing? If nothing is this object of nothingness, then it is not nothing, but something. Can nothing exist? Then it is something. Is non-existence a concept in your mind? A concept is something, not nothing. Is nothing a non-existent state and therefore a state and therefore something? Is nothing the void? The void is something. Can you displace nothing? Can it be measured? What are the attributes of nothing? Say them, and we shall label it something. The very act of defining nothing, makes it something. To contemplate non-existence implies existence, so nothing is a non-existent idea in our minds. As an idea, it is something. How about we say <THIS> is something and <THAT> is nothing. Well, <THAT> nothing is now something.See where this goes? Do you have a sufficient, satisfactory answer to why there is something rather than nothing? I tell you that there is none. The question itself is absurd. The question of nothing is itself a fallacious question, as you cannot appeal to nothingness without appealing to something. These questions are meaningless, and need not be answered.
An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely...
Thanks, Mordeth, I will certainly not try to better your explanation as to why there could never have been "nothing". It doesn't exist.
"Nothing" is simply a word,
Quote from: Timey An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely...Sorry. You still have progress in infinity.
"Nothing" is simply a word, <the word concept snipped by Timey, among other things>
True, but it is also a concept...
Can we say that what comes before the word 'progressed' is before the Big Bang or initial point of creation, and that the word 'progressed' is the Big Bang or initial point of creation and also the point of the initiation of the beginning of the phenomenon of time itself?
These all being points of high interest to me, I find that I 'can' easily follow the path of your logic Jeff and look forward to hearing more on this...
Please Mordeth accept my most abject apologies, I actually 'hate' it when people do that to me... . Your point is taken!
Are we arguing the same toss of the coin though? What do you reckon to the finale? The creation concept - "An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely" - in relation to what came before the Big Bang, or the moment of creation (as I prefer) ?
Hi jeffreyH,Many individuals misunderstand the term escape velocity. Escape velocity only describes the initial speed at which an object can escape forever. Objects under constant acceleration can "escape" at virtually any speed if under propulsion. The problem with the event horizon trapping objects forever is not necessarily related to the escape velocity equaling c. The problem is that once you cross the event horizon, your light cone is forever enclosed within. There is no geodesic that points outside the event horizon. Space has become curved on itself and the future lies only at the singularity. Once you cross the event horizon, no matter what speed you take, or which direction you point, you can never leave. The future direction of time has become radially bent to the singularity. Put another way, the singularity exists in all directions you take after crossing an event horizon, regardless of any arbitrarily large speed. All you will do is get to the singularity faster.
Quote from: timey on 23/08/2015 02:47:28Please Mordeth accept my most abject apologies, I actually 'hate' it when people do that to me... . Your point is taken!No problem timey. I appreciate the discussion. Quote from: timey on 23/08/2015 01:28:09Can we say that what comes before the word 'progressed' is before the Big Bang or initial point of creation, and that the word 'progressed' is the Big Bang or initial point of creation and also the point of the initiation of the beginning of the phenomenon of time itself? Events have only progressed from Planck time forward. Fundamentally, GR and most of physics only concerns itself wih events and the relationship between these events. So we measure these relationships and develop theories to describe them. Like the curvature of spacetime. GR does not describe the initial conditions as an event. Events only occur in spacetime. In fact, events and their relationships are what define spacetime.
I too appreciate the discussion (I have not quoted the whole of your post, Pete asked me not to quote needlessly to make for easier reading, but please know I have taken on board your other comments)Ok, well the OP's question is allowing us room for a 'little' speculation... Perhaps?You have alluded to the fact that GR and QM are insufficient to describe everything. Let's ditch them for the present.Given that you are happy with the derivation of the statement. ie: on the basis that an 'absence' can be defined as a description of that which is not there, and 'nothing' can be defined by the existence of 'everything', which is already defined - and by the same token, because 'everything' is defined, 'nothing' cannot not exist - and that we have by definition defined a state of nothing as a concept...so long as you are happy that this now is a statement based in logic...Could we consider 'an infinite state of nothing' as a pre Big Bang state?Could we consider 'progressed' as the means of cross over from nothing to everything being a Big Bang or creation type scenario?
The philosopher in me wants to believe that our Universe emerged from something. The logician inside me denies it.
The scientist in me does not know and refuses to guess.
An infinite state of nothing, containing only the potential to be something, and progressing to a state of something I can measure suits me, I suppose.
The appropriate stance for a scientist is to take the position of I don't know if the universe emerged from something or not.
in any kind of inflating cosmology the odds strongly (infinitely) favor the beginning to be so far in the past that it is effectively at minus infinity.More precisely, given any T the probability is unity that the beginning was more than T time-units ago.
Pmb, I also agree with your statements. I believe I have stated multiple times in this thread that I do not know, and neither does science. My recent posts were speculative responses to Bill and timey.
In fact, if the cosmological constant is powerful enough, there need not even be a Big Bang, with the Universe instead beginning in a collapsing phase, followed by a bounce at finite size under the influence of the cosmological constant (though such models are ruled out by observations).
(though such models are ruled out by observations).
“Abhay Ashtekar remembers his reaction the first time he saw the universe bounce. ‘I was taken aback,’ he says. He was watching a simulation of the universe rewind towards the big bang. Mostly the universe behaved as expected, becoming smaller and denser as the galaxies converged. But then, instead of reaching the big bang ‘singularity’, the universe bounced and started expanding again. What on earth was happening? Ashtekar wanted to be sure of what he was seeing, so he asked his colleagues to sit on the result for six months before publishing it in 2006. And no wonder. The theory that the recycled universe was based on, called loop quantum cosmology (LQC), had managed to illuminate the very birth of the universe – something even Einstein’s general theory of relativity fails to do. LQC has been tantalising physicists since 2003 with the idea that our universe could conceivably have emerged from the collapse of a previous universe. Now the theory is poised to make predictions we can actually test. If they are verified, the big bang will give way to a big bounce and we will finally know the quantum structure of space-time. Instead of a universe that emerged from a point of infinite density, we have one that recycles, possibly through an eternal series of expansions and contractions, with no beginning and no end.”
Great stuff! Thanks for that link Jeff... I have read snippets of news concerning, but that was a very concise and up to date rendition and also I hadn't made the connection to relating this to Matt Strassler's comment. Silly me .But... and this is what interests me... presumably the computer simulation in 2008 that led to the concept of LQC was programmed independently of any CMB expectations? And that this 'dust everywhere' disappointment is only relevant to the inflationary part of LQC concept, as it is a disappointment to all theories inclusive of an inflationary period?
Quote from: timey on 26/08/2015 19:41:11Great stuff! Thanks for that link Jeff... I have read snippets of news concerning, but that was a very concise and up to date rendition and also I hadn't made the connection to relating this to Matt Strassler's comment. Silly me .But... and this is what interests me... presumably the computer simulation in 2008 that led to the concept of LQC was programmed independently of any CMB expectations? And that this 'dust everywhere' disappointment is only relevant to the inflationary part of LQC concept, as it is a disappointment to all theories inclusive of an inflationary period?Not really. The wavelengths involved are very long and it is very hard to detect the effects. Dust would be enough to hide the effects.
...Can a state of nothing be defined as existing?