What was before the big bang?

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #50 on: 22/08/2015 19:24:22 »
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...
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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #51 on: 22/08/2015 21:38:26 »
Quote from: Timey
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...

Semantics, Timey, just semantics. 

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.

Mordeth, never say I didn't offer you something to have fun with. [:)]
There never was nothing.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #52 on: 22/08/2015 21:58:29 »
How do you define anything, without defining it in terms of something?

Well, if it is possible to define 'everything', then to define a state of nothing as an absence of everything answers your question.

If you try to define nothing in terms of something, you no longer have nothing to define.

This just becomes a matter of defining 'absence'. :)

In any case I was just popping back to edit my post with this:

(Edit: or perhaps I could rephrase that as:  ...An infinite state of nothing infinitely progressing into a state of everything.)
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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #53 on: 22/08/2015 22:21:36 »
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.
« Last Edit: 22/08/2015 22:29:56 by Bill S »
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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #54 on: 22/08/2015 22:27:55 »
Quote from: Timey
Well, if it is possible to define 'everything', then to define a state of nothing as an absence of everything answers your question.

I like that, Timey, but it might be wise to leave out "a state of", or someone is bound to argue that "a state" is something.
There never was nothing.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #55 on: 22/08/2015 23:11:13 »
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? :D

Just kidding... I agree that 0 is a bit strange...conceptually, it can be considered as both something and nothing.

Which...(I'm now adding, having read post above), does kind of detract from your comment concerning 'a state' of nothing, as nothing is already considered a state of something.

You could now argue that the state of nothing must also be absenced as part of everything to achieve a true state of nothing...but I think it was 'you' that mentioned semantics :) (chuckle)
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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #56 on: 22/08/2015 23:21:12 »
Quote from: Timey
Is that you attempting to wow me with mathematics Bill? :D

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.
There never was nothing.

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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #57 on: 22/08/2015 23:26:29 »
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?
There never was nothing.

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Offline Mordeth

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #58 on: 22/08/2015 23:37:39 »
Quote from: Mordeth
  The very definition of nothing would first have to be agreed upon,
Quote from: Bill S

“Define nothing!” = “standard cop-out”.  You are capable of better than that, Mordeth. [:)]
Bill,  do you believe that one can ask questions that have no translation to observations?  For example, where is infinity located? Or maybe you can ask me if the number 322 is a Marxist?     The fact is, there are meaningless questions that exist.  Perhaps it makes a person feel smart to ask them, but a true purveyor of knowledge will reject these questions as meaningless.   Your chain of reasoning, Bill, depends on the assumption of your own answer and is therefore invalid. 

And so now we derail the thread.  I will likely be contacted by the local magistrate of this forum. 

"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.   

Quote from: 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.
Quote from: bill S
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.
Bill, I defined the Universe as all that exists.  If time is finite and the Universe began at some point in the past, by definition there was no cause - as the Universe is all that exists, so what could cause it?  So no, you do not understand it.  The assumption of no cause is justified by the definition of the Universe.  The logic is valid, therefore if you accept the premise you must accept the conclusion, or it is YOU who are committing the fallacy.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #59 on: 22/08/2015 23:46:41 »
Quote from: Timey
Is that you attempting to wow me with mathematics Bill? :D

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.

Awww Bill...that was indeed, under the circumstances of a 0, just a joke. :).  Myself, I struggle with the maths but can understand what's occurring when the concepts behind them are explained.  I guess some people just don't have a flair for the notation.  You have my sympathy, and hey...nice to speak with you!

Aha, but I see there is more... :)

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?

Ok then clever clogs, how's about:

An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely...

???
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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #60 on: 23/08/2015 00:58:17 »
Quote from: Mordeth
"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.

Thanks, Mordeth, I will certainly not try to better your explanation as to why there could never have been "nothing".  It doesn't exist.
There never was nothing.

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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #61 on: 23/08/2015 01:05:58 »
Quote from: Timey
An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely...

Sorry. You still have progress in infinity.  Maybe you could get Mordeth to formulate it for you, his perplexing verbosity has an exuberance that is quite enviable.  [:)]
There never was nothing.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #62 on: 23/08/2015 01:28:09 »
Thanks, Mordeth, I will certainly not try to better your explanation as to why there could never have been "nothing".  It doesn't exist.

But surely now we have a quandary...if nothing does not exist we have no means of defining everything, therefore this is calling into question the existence of everything.  I'm quite sure my logic is not faulty!

"Nothing" is simply a word,

True, but it is also a concept...

Quote from: Timey
An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely...

Sorry. You still have progress in infinity.

Ah yes my main man, how very true :), but now we find ourselves at the crux of the OP's question...
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? 
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Offline Mordeth

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #63 on: 23/08/2015 02:28:55 »
"Nothing" is simply a word,  <the word concept snipped by Timey, among other things>
Quote from: timey
True, but it is also a concept...

Hi timey,  did you intentionally snip the second part of the sentence of mine that you quoted in which I specifically stated it was a concept and then correct me and say it was a concept?   Surely there is some fundamental universal principle  that has been violated here.   Good stuff my friend!  [:)]  I shall henceforth compare this outrage to the work of another poster here who is of the opinion that terms must be stated twice in the same sentence in order to carry meaning to the reader. 

All said above in good fun. 

 

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #64 on: 23/08/2015 02:47:28 »
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) ?

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?
« Last Edit: 23/08/2015 02:54:31 by timey »
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Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #65 on: 23/08/2015 11:07:34 »
Due to the fact that GR requires mass to increase, hence relativistic mass, then an infinite amount of energy is required to reach light speed for particles with rest mass. This can be applied to the escape velocity required to move away from a black hole. We also have infinite energy required to escape at the event horizon. The mathematics breaks down because of this. This al relates to movement normal or perpendicular to the imaginary surface of the event horizon. If we consider an object moving towards a black hole with a velocity that is an appreciable percentage of light speed then the effect of the tidal forces give us another problem. As they will tend to accelerate the object. Something has to prevent light speed violation outside the horizon. If the speed of the particle is approaching the speed of gravity then this may be the answer to preventing the mathematics from breaking down. The gravitation is then less effective as the speed of the particle approaches the speed of gravitation. In which case you can think of the singularity in different terms. You could also explain the coordinate nature of time and distance. Thus the big bang might not be such a mystery.
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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #66 on: 23/08/2015 11:19:14 »
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...
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Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #67 on: 23/08/2015 12:21:26 »
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...

For this to be feasible you need a force carrier, the graviton. The density of force carriers would have to operate to reduce the increase in acceleration. Effectively slowing down the passage of time as well.
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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #68 on: 23/08/2015 12:24:18 »
Yes, that 'is' an interesting notion indeed Jeff! :)
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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #69 on: 23/08/2015 12:24:49 »
Presumably no one wishes to enter a discussion concerning my questions regarding the statement:

"An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely."

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?

This being because this will, following the path of logic, lead to a discussion regarding the part after the word 'progressed' in relation to the second law of thermodynamics and 'perhaps' call into question our current perception of the nature of the Big Bang?
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Offline Mordeth

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #70 on: 23/08/2015 15:25:09 »
Please 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
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) ?
I truly wish I knew.  I easily have 200 pages of notes on this subject alone.  Many of the discrete models, like loop quantum gravity,  assume that spacetime is not fundamental, but emerges from something else.  The problem is that these discrete models tend to violate Lorentz invariance.   The Fermi observations suggest spacetime is continous, as GR predicts.  This is one of the reasons we have no quantum theory of gravity. Without a quantum theory of gravity, we may never know. 


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?
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. 



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Offline Mordeth

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #71 on: 23/08/2015 15:58:36 »
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.

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Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #72 on: 23/08/2015 16:27:11 »
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.

I already know all that. I am interested in the kinetic energy necessary for escape to infinity.
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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #73 on: 23/08/2015 16:45:41 »
Please 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. 

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?
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?
« Last Edit: 23/08/2015 16:53:40 by timey »
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Offline Mordeth

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #74 on: 24/08/2015 03:48:44 »
Quote from: timey
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?
Hi timey,

I understand where you are going with this, but there is a point where a discussion of physics turns to philosophy, metaphysics and opinion.  There is no quantifiable property that can be empirically measured in the scenario you ask me of.  Therefore,  no answer I give will be in the context of physics.  If spacetime is not a fundamental property, that is, if it is more than the 4 dimensional manifold that GR predicts, then we need to invoke strings, loops and other mathematical constructs to describe what it emerged from.  I am ok with that.  But beyond that, we enter a realm that numbers and math and physics do not and cannot describe.  So as I said somewhere around page 1,  a person is free to speculate.

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.

Do you think, in the context of philosophy and not mathematics, that the concept of infinity can be any more understood than the concept of nothingness?  Can you even conceive of something without limit?  Could the concepts of infinity and nothingness be the same thing?   Are they then indistinguishable from each other?  Equally paradoxical and otherwise inconceivable?  If infinity exists, how could it then be something other than nothing?

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Offline PmbPhy

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #75 on: 24/08/2015 04:11:20 »
Quote from: Mordeth
The philosopher in me wants to believe that our Universe emerged from something.  The logician inside me denies it.
The appropriate stance for a scientist is to take the position of I don't know if the universe emerged from something or not. It's incorrect to assert that it didn't emerge because you simply don't know.

Quote from: Mordeth
  The scientist in me does not know and refuses to guess.
Nothing wrong with guesses either. Sometimes a long way down the road they might lead to something. One guess that is popular in cosmology is the cosmological principle which states that distribution of matter in the universe is both homogeneous and isotropic. But we can never know this to be true or false. However when its employed by cosmologists they're making a guess, albeit an educated guess on what we have already observed on the large scale in the observable universe.

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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #76 on: 24/08/2015 14:38:01 »
Quote from: Mordeth
  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.

This is another example of the verbal contortions commonly found in "something from nothing" circles.

How can nothing contain anything and still be nothing?

What is potential if not something?

How can nothing progress?
There never was nothing.

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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #77 on: 24/08/2015 14:53:52 »
Quote from: Pete
The appropriate stance for a scientist is to take the position of I don't know if the universe emerged from something or not.

Would it not be reasonable to add to that something like: ....as no one has shown how something to emerge from nothing, then the claim that the Universe emerged from nothing involves an additional assumption.  Our old friend "Bill Ockham" might not like that.  [:)]
There never was nothing.

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Offline dlorde

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #78 on: 24/08/2015 17:57:18 »
Mithani and Vilenkin’s claim that they've shown mathematically that the universe must have a beginning has an amusingly simple response from Leonard Susskind, who shows that if we accept a beginning:
Quote from: Susskind
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.
So the beginning of the universe is infinitely far in the past. Perhaps this endearing solution can be added to Mordeth's list of possibilities.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #79 on: 24/08/2015 20:55:17 »
Ah Mordeth, interesting reply! (Post 76)

Yes, I agree, there is a point where all fields shake hands.  However, I do believe that because logic is associated with philosophy and mathematics with physics, that the significance of applied logic has become under-represented in the world of physics.
Logic is a very precise tool that can be applied to any field/situation.  Like mathematics, logic is a process of reduction.  When a matter can be reduced no more, then truth emerges.  Logic is a more precise tool than mathematics because Mathematica it is only as good as the concepts it is attached to.  Logic is comprised only of concepts, and therefore it 'can' be more productive.

Take infinity.  You say you have trouble comprehending it.  Ok, to reduce this we must question one's ability to comprehend.  Quite easily we can deduce that because one cannot comprehend is not a proof that a concept does not exist.  Let us now try divorcing the concept of infinity from the time line aspect.  We can always add it back in later...  So, we find that now we can look more closely at these examples of what the mind may comprehend as infinite. 'Nothing', or 0, and 'everything.'
Looking at everything, let's say that everything were only 1 thing.  We can comprehend that this 1 thing is everything and in that it is only 1 thing and there is nothing else, this 1 thing 'is' infinite.

Now let's us look at nothing.   Everything absence everything = nothing.  Nothing is the symmetrical opposite to everything, if everything is infinite then nothing must also be infinite and we can see that when we add the time line aspect back in, a state of nothing has no time and remains by definition infinite.

Ok, all good so far... We have an infinite state of nothing and an infinite state of everything.  But we must remember that we haven't added the timeline aspect back into an infinite state of everything yet, so hang on, back up a mo... because an infinite state of everything is not as possible for everything as it is for nothing because everything includes the passage of time.

We have to carefully consider how this all fits together.  The second law of thermodynamics must be upheld... After much consideration, blah, blah... and so, henceforth my interpretation of a state of everything progressed infinitely.

"An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely."

This however, in consideration of the second law of thermodynamics, when following this path of logic becomes quite interesting indeed. (To me anyway :) )

Bill makes a good point about potential.  Is potential something?  What is potential?  Potential is the possibility for change.  Can we logically reason that a state of nothing has the potential to change?  Again the second law is relevant.  If we consider our surroundings our experience tells us that all states have the potential to change.  Why would a state of nothing differ.  What potential change can be logically reasoned for a state of nothing?  The only potential change for a state of nothing is for it to become a state of everything.  For change to happen there must be a time aspect for it to happen within.  A state of nothing is timeless.  So... any potential that a state of nothing may possess can only be found in the possibility that the potential change in a state of nothing involve the initial moment of the phenomenon of time.

Now just to back track the reasoning, we have defined everything and we have defined the phenomenon of time, but we have not defined the rate that time is occurring at.  We know that the rate of time is affected by a gravitational field. (could time actually be caused by a gravitational field, being an entirely logical notion) ...And what was the gravitational field at the point of a state of nothing gaining the potential to a state of everything?  Again, second law becomes interesting!!!
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Offline sciconoclast

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #80 on: 25/08/2015 00:25:24 »
I agree with some of Pmbhy's comments: "our understanding of the Universe is in its infancy....there  may be other universes.....singularity is merely an extrapolation."

Before scientist could observe other solar systems they had already deduced the process by which ours was formed from the laws of physics and the properties of the planets. I am hoping that similarly once both the understanding of physics and the universe is advanced the process generating our universe can be understood [ working on it ].

Einstein acknowledged his theory could lead to singularities occurring but he thought that an as yet unknown principle would prevent it.

Science once believed our galaxy to be the only one because we could not see beyond it. History often repeats itself. 

I thought I might introduce a relevant but slightly different concept for the pundits to jump on. Is it possible that there is a greater cosmos which does not have a composite time vector ( exist independent of time ) but localized events, such as the shock wave from a local big bang create a local time vector for everything within it. I could be more specific about how this could occur but this is not the place for that.

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Offline Mordeth

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #81 on: 25/08/2015 00:38:17 »
Hi timey, Bill S and dlorde,

I must think and consider more. I am not well skilled in the area of transcendental thinking, so I substitute science and physics to arrive at explanations.  I am mostly interested in the events of the observable universe and the measurable relationship between those events.  I find that current scientific theory is adequate for my needs. This does not imply whatsoever that current science is adequate as a whole, nor does it suggest that we should not continually advance our somewhat limited understanding of things. 

timey, I particularly enjoyed reading what you just said.  Thank you for taking the time to write it.

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.

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Offline PmbPhy

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #82 on: 25/08/2015 07:23:48 »
Quote from: Mordeth
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.
Same here. What I was disagreeing with was the automatic assumption about a singularity merely because GR is being used for all values of "t". I was recently doing a refresh on my cosmology as a result of this thread. I have a text by Andrew Liddle on the subject that I haven't read in years which I just started to read again. On the point of the Big Bang the author writes
Quote
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).
And in such a case there will be no singularity.

You can read the text at: http://bookos-z1.org/book/930602/67a687

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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #83 on: 25/08/2015 14:40:49 »
   
Quote
(though such models are ruled out by observations).


It seems they may have been ruled in as far as computer simulations go.

Quote from: Anil Ananthaswamy (New Scientist2008)


    “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.”
   
There never was nothing.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #84 on: 25/08/2015 19:32:08 »
Hey Mordeth, thanks for the positive comment, really appreciated!

...and Bill, I am familiar with the LQC concept.  It's a fascinating thought that such was the result of a computer simulation!
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Offline Bill S

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #85 on: 25/08/2015 22:24:15 »
For anyone who might not be familiar with Matt Strassler, this could be an interesting link.

http://profmattstrassler.com/articles-and-posts/relativity-space-astronomy-and-cosmology/history-of-the-universe/
There never was nothing.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #86 on: 26/08/2015 10:23:28 »
Having read the link above, it disappoints me that Matt has not given more precise details as to why the discovery of March 18th 2014 did not stand up to scrutiny.  To know the reason why something does not work is just as useful as knowing why something does work!

Does anyone have any further info?
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Offline jeffreyH

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Fixation on the Einstein papers is a good definition of OCD.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #88 on: 26/08/2015 19:41:11 »
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?
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Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #89 on: 28/08/2015 17:32:18 »
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?

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.
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Offline Thebox

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #90 on: 28/08/2015 18:25:17 »
What was before the big bang? We could alter the question to say, what was before arbitrary time?


Clearly there can be only one definite answer to the question without any theory or hypotheses related to fallacy. Before the big bang there was space.  Logic and experiment on earth suggests that for anything to ''exist'' or happen, that something needs space to happen in. An expansion of metal by adding energy, the metal expands into space, an inflating balloon expands into space.  Observation shows us this and experiment shows us this.   
The expansion of ''space'' is by definition and logic not accurate in my opinion and based on science observation.  Science does not observe actual space, space is ''transparent'' to sight, we see through space like seeing through a sheet of glass. We observe matter in space and the motion of matter in space, velocities that we can calculate.
Using the big bang as a way to record the ''beginning of time'' is no more than measuring the distance of matter and the distance it has travelled through space from a specific event in space at a specific ''time''.  A specific time that is arbitrary and made by us, there is nothing to suggest that ''space-time'' did not pre-exist the big bang and everything we believe is based on a distance and speed rather than a time itself.
When people suggest there was nothing before the big bang, I see ''nothing'' as darkness, a dark space without content.
The human mind can only go this far back, that is what observation allows us to do, to imagine a beginning always leads to zero, a zero point space.
We are fools if we think that nothing means no space, because without space there can not be something. 

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #91 on: 28/08/2015 19:15:08 »
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?

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.

I'm sorry Jeff.  Not really what???  Clearly the link explains in much greater detail the reasons why the dust would be enough to hide the effects of long wavelengths, surely?

I fail to ascertain the 'point' of your post to be honest.  What does this have to do with the computer simulation from 2008 that Loop Quantum Cosmology is based on?

Or, if indeed this is what you intended to mean...why was it 'not really' a disappointment to all inflationary theories that the results of the CMB were dust tainted?

Can you be a little clearer please?
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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #92 on: 28/08/2015 21:31:38 »
Jeff, I am not an expert but there is a reason why these discussions are called threads.  When partaking of one of these discussions it is expected that one can upkeep the thread of the conversation.  This involves reading what other posters have said and responding to the content of their posts in a relevant fashion... and it involves a poster to keep up with the posts that have transpired in-between the last post they made and the post they wish to make in the present.  Please know also that it is considered rude to reply to a post in a language not understood by the other poster/posters... And, to say so, it goes without saying that it is rather frowned upon to drastically alter one's statement, especially 'after' the fact... also... I have never heard before of someone deleting the evidence of 'ever' having made a post, because 'that' is just wrong...and lastly, this being just a suggestion, but talking to other posters as if they are of a lesser intelligence than you could actually prove counter productive!

On the basis of my observations of you Jeff, particularly regarding the 'how does light speed up when exiting a denser material" thread, I have come to the conclusion that you must not be aware of these factors concerning internet discussions, henceforth... please consider the above as some good sound advice!
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Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #93 on: 29/08/2015 11:48:52 »
Which post did I delete? I have rarely deleted a reply. I can't remember when I last did that.
Fixation on the Einstein papers is a good definition of OCD.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #94 on: 29/08/2015 12:12:16 »
Oh dear me Jeff, I can see that its much worse than I thought (chuckle)... Ok, to explain, there arises within these forums this wonderful feature that is in as much as being in possession of a time travelling machine.  By applying the scroll button one can just navigate back up the pages and revisit the past.
I have also experimented with time travelling into what future posts may relate, this manipulation isn't quite so obvious as a functionality of the forum, but is quite easily employed none-the-less!
« Last Edit: 29/08/2015 12:14:24 by timey »
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Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #95 on: 29/08/2015 14:31:47 »
You are trying to bring personality and personal motivation into the discussion. I am only interested in the physics. If you can tell me which post I deleted I will check the thread.
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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #96 on: 29/08/2015 15:20:23 »
Well Jeff, I too am 'just' about the physics, which is why I have been somewhat non-plussed by some of your earlier responses to my posts.
I would rather get back to 'just' the physics whereas we can converse in relevance to the subject matter, as in recent posts on the "how does light speed up when it exits a denser material".

The post in question is within this thread I've mentioned, a post whereas you replied to me in response to post 49 saying "Now you are clearer in meaning and are saying something interesting"... This reply you made disappeared.  Your post at the top of page 4, post no 75 was particularly irrelevant and in relation to your disappearing post, well... if you continue reading page 4 in its entirety you will be up to speed.
Personally I feel, and if you read top of page 5, that this 'could' be a past tense situation, but if you are going to comment on my posts could you respond relevantly?

...and please know that my personality and personal motivation are always going to be an inseparable part of the package.
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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #97 on: 06/09/2015 21:56:00 »
Well, on the basis that no comments are forthcoming concerning loop quantum cosmology and the relevant computer simulation in relation to the the dust factor of the CMB... how's about a bit more attempted application of logic?

Going back to the statement 'An infinite state of nothing progressed into a state of everything infinitely', we have already addressed the fact that a zero, although classed as nothing, is also classed as something.  Now let us look at the term 'existence'.  Can a state of nothing be defined as existing?  A state of nothing has no time to exist in...  Can something have an existence outside of time?  A state of everything cannot exist outside of time.  By definition, as soon as a state of nothing becomes a state of everything, even if that everything is only one thing, the fact of a change in state signifies a time factor.  By this reasoning we can then deduce that the only thing that can exist outside of time is nothing, and that a state of nothing can exist.
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Offline dlorde

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #98 on: 07/09/2015 10:16:02 »
...Can a state of nothing be defined as existing?
There's no such thing as a 'state' of nothing. Nothing is the negation of existence and state. As such, it is purely conceptual; it exists as a negating concept only.

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Offline timey

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Re: What was before the big bang?
« Reply #99 on: 07/09/2015 10:39:22 »
Nope, very sorry dlorde but that's not how it works.  Where is your picking apart of my logic in order to prove it wrong?  Or...where is the logical argument of your alternative statement?  There is none.  What you are doing is just making statements and presenting them as 'fact' without showing your reasoning.  To ague against statements presented in logic, one must counter present in logic, otherwise any alternative statement one makes in response is meaningless.
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