Part 1: Here’s What We’re Talking About
We’re all fairly familiar with the universe, or at least we think we are. Most cosmologists and sciencey-type people accept the idea of the Big Bang as the beginning of the universe. The idea is that right after the creation of the universe, there was a big bang – meaning that the universe started both expanding and cooling, moving from a very hot dense state to the fairly spread out, comfortably warm state that we all know and love.
But linked to this is the idea that the universe was first created somehow. Some folks believe that the universe was created in a purely physical way, through some process that we currently don’t understand but hopefully will someday, kind of like how we don’t currently understand where the other sock disappears to. Other folks believe that there was some mysterious mumbo-jumbo involved that we will never understand because we’re incapable of understanding it, and they tend to think that some supernatural being was responsible for that, whom they tend to call “God” (or “Allah”, “Yahweh”, “Jehovah”, etc.) A third group of folks comes down squarely in the middle, believing that there was a supernatural being responsible, but that we might someday understand His ways and may already understand part of them. They point to various ideas in modern physics as evidence that “an intelligent being must have done this”, such as the delicate balance between the four forces – electromagnetism, gravity, the strong force, and the weak force.
I’m here to tell you that they’re all wrong.
Ok, I know that most of you will jump up with the arguments from whatever group you belong to and try to prove me wrong, or just discount whatever I have to say on the subject. Ok, fine, but hear me out first. And yes, there’s just a teensy little chance that I could be wrong too, but I think we can just dispense with that out of respect for my massive intellect, right?
Before I explain all of this, I should warn you – this will not feel right. It simply doesn’t quite fit with our everyday experience of the world, and the way we perceive reality. If you’re familiar with general relativity or quantum mechanics, you might remember how hard it was to wrap your head around it when you first learned about it. It’s so outside the way we experience the world that even people like Albert Einstein had problems with it. He said [I can't accept quantum mechanics because] “I like to think the moon is there even if I am not looking at it.” Neils Bohr said “Anyone not shocked by quantum mechanics has not yet understood it.”
Well, this is like that. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.