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since 07-30-2009
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0 posted 08-12-2009 07:30 PM       View Profile for crosscountry83   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for crosscountry83

Just to think about maybe there are answers, I just don't know them.

When does time end?

When did it begin?

What's outside the universe?

What existed before the universe began?

Where do thoughts come from?

Why do we imagine?

Falling rain
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1 posted 08-13-2009 03:57 PM       View Profile for Falling rain   Email Falling rain   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Falling rain's Home Page   View IP for Falling rain

Q:When does time end?
A:It never does. Does it?  

Q:When did it begin?
A:It never did. It was just there I guess. You know the question, "What came first? The chicken or the egg?" Well a circle has no beginning so does time imo.

Q:What's outside the universe?
A: I dunno. More universe? lol.

Q:What existed before the universe began?
A: When did it begin?

Q:Where do thoughts come from?
A: Genes, environment, education and our brain chemistry. Don't our brains have a mind of our own?

Q:Why do we imagine?
A: To try and understand or think of something unimaginable.
Bob K
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2 posted 08-14-2009 06:15 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

     These are questions for meditation, aren't they?  You ask them as though they are questions for which we have answers based in information.  Historically Sciences seem to have peeled off of philosophy, one at a time, and I don't know that these are yet in the purview of science.

When does time end?

     Here for example, you talk about "time."  The current notion in physics is that there is something called "space-time" but that to think of "time" as a separate thing may be a mistake.  We don't have enough of a notion of what space is (or "space-time") to venture a decent answer.  We know that objects distort "space-time."  This we know because of some measurements taken around an eclipse in the twenties, which confirmed predictions made on the basis of Einstein's theory of Relativity.

When did it begin?

     When we get a better Idea of what it is (space-time, as opposed to time, I mean) somebody may give the answer to that question a shot.  For us, pragmatically speaking, why not put it at the moment of the big bang, at least for now, and revise our understanding as more data comes in?

What's outside the universe?

     If I understand your question correctly, there is a problem with it that comes from the fact that it is expressed in language rather than math.  I don't understand math, myself, so you'd have to check further, but the way I understand things is that because the question is in language we are forced to use a dichotomy which implies an outside to every inside.  The reality of the situation may not be held to our linguistic understandings.  There is apparently some notion of the actual shape of the universe, however.  The last I heard it was supposed to be saddle shaped, though the nature of theory means that this is always open to revision.

What existed before the universe began?

     Why assume that anything existed before the universe began?  Other than this, I couldn't hope to give you any guidance.

Where do thoughts come from?

     That would depend on which theory of psychology you are looking at, wouldn't it?  The most commonly held theory would suggest that they come from the brain.  Should you consider, say, Rupert Sheldrake's theory of morphic resonance, you would might attribute them to the existence of morphic fields that are not entirely in the head, but are part of the way the world is put together, almost like radiation or archetypes.

Why do we imagine?

     I don't think I could even attempt a try at this question in this form.  The word "why" is especially troubling here, since it suggests there is some meaning or actual reason involved in the matter, a supposition that I'm not sure I could go along with.  The word "imagine" is not at all clear, either.  Also, I'm a chicken.

     Just though somebody ought to be stupid enough to give a try at answering the unanswerable.
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3 posted 08-14-2009 08:18 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Why assume that anything existed before the universe began?  Other than this, I couldn't hope to give you any guidance.

Probably because we know of no finite thing that doesn't have a "before" ... or an "other", to which its attributes may be traced.  Why should the finite universe itself be different?  It is rather unsatisfying to think of an astronomically powerful explosion that leads to some pretty astounding art, happening for and out of nothing.

Bob K
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4 posted 08-15-2009 04:49 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

Dear Stephen,

           Certainly.  On the other hand, as folks who are not only finite, but bounded by one or another form of language and the structures that seem to be inherent in that, such as duality on the one hand, then on the other hand and hierarchy one thing may be more or less than something else, and profundity one thing or idea is deeper or more shallow than another, not to mention so many others, our thinking and perception of these things are in all probability  (three more, by the way, thinking, perception, and likelihood popped up right out of the blue) factors that make our evaluation of these questions wildly inaccurate.

     These are also the same factors that make the necessity of our attempting to formulate and answer these questions virtually inevitable, whatever the actual  relation of these questions to reality.

     It's probably best to ask and love the process of asking and deliberating, and glory in the humanity of the process and the places it takes us.  How seriously we should take the whole thing is a very different question indeed, and one in which both faith and absurdity have firm  roles in addressing.  Loving life in the process of asking is also a great asset, no matter what the answer.

Yours, Bob Kaven
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5 posted 08-15-2009 05:39 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

Why should the finite universe itself be different?

Why should the universe be finite?

I prefer the big bounce theory which allows no start and no end.

In which case:

When does time end?

It doesn't

When did it begin?

It didn't

What's outside the universe?

A lot of space and then more universes

What existed before the universe began?

The universe

Where do thoughts come from?

Your brain

Why do we imagine?

It's a survival trait to allow you to consider scenarios and problems and then solve them before your life depends on it.

since 04-19-2008
Posts 279

6 posted 08-15-2009 09:56 PM       View Profile for rad802   Email rad802   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit rad802's Home Page   View IP for rad802

We cannot speak of time, we must speak of space/time. Time and space began together.
If we did not live on the arm of a spiral galaxy but instead lived near the galaxtic center we would not be having this conversation. The intensity of the radiation does not allow for life.
Also the early universe was much hotter, and if the universe were not expanding the radiation would not be dissipated and the night sky would be 300 times brighter than the sun.

The lastest theory being tossed around is that the universe is really a multiverse. (brane theory)
And that the big bang may have ocurred when two undulating membranes touched at a point. The universe has been expanding ever since. Either it has enough mass to eventually stop expanding and collapse again (a closed universe) or it will expand forever (an open universe) as it turns out the the universe appears to be balanced right between these and has been said to be flat.

This explanation is of a closed universe. An open universe cannot be visualised because every point in space is saddle shaped.

Einstein did not know when he penned his famous theories, that space was stretching.
In fact the universe is stretching or expanding from the three dimensions we know, into a higher dimension.  
We can not visualise this but we can visualise two dimensions expanding into three.
It would look like the skin of a balloon. The skin of the balloon is just like a sheet of paper and has been called flatland, a two dimensional universe. If you put little dots all over it to represent the galaxies and you blow this balloon up, you will see the dots are moving away from each other just like the galaxies are doing. No matter which direction you look, you are looking into the past at a time when the universe was smaller.
Now lets say this balloon has a north and south pole.
If you are standing at the north pole and you look out across this two dimensional surface you will notice that the universe has no edge. If light were infinitely fast and you had a powerful enough telescope you could see the back of your head.
But light takes time to travel. And so as we look out across space we don't see the serface of a sphere but a sight line spiraling in tword the center like the shell of a nautilus.
Let's imagine that the universe is 5 billion light years around and the light leaving a star at the south pole travels two and a half billion years to reach us if the universe were not expanding.
But because it is expanding, by the time the light reaches us six and three eighths billion light years later the universe is now twenty billion light years around.
If you graph this out on a sheet of paper, you will notice that space was stretching out so fast that it exceeded the speed of light.
There is also another scenario in which space swirls faster than light.
The space around a spinning black hole is being spun by the immense gravity at a rate faster than light.

Fredkin has prposed a theory that you might find interesting.
Digital physics suggests that there exists, at least in principle, a program for a universal computer which computes the evolution of the universe in real time. The computer could be, for example, a huge cellular automaton (Zuse 1967), or a universal Turing machine, as suggested by Schmidhuber (1997), who pointed out that there exists a very short program that can compute all possible computable universes in an asymptotically optimal way.

Some try to identify single physical particles with simple bits. For example, if one particle, such as an electron, is switching from one quantum state to another, it may be the same as if a bit is changed from one value (0, say) to the other (1). A single bit suffices to describe a single quantum switch of a given particle. As the universe appears to be composed of elementary particles whose behavior can be completely described by the quantum switches they undergo, that implies that the universe as a whole can be described by bits. Every state is information, and every change of state is a change in information (requiring the manipulation of one or more bits). Setting aside dark matter and dark energy, which are poorly understood at present, the known universe consists of about 1080 protons and the same number of electrons. Hence, the universe could be simulated by a computer capable of storing and manipulating about 1090 bits. If such a simulation is indeed the case, then hypercomputation would be impossible.

Loop quantum gravity could lend support to digital physics, in that it assumes space-time is quantized. Paola Zizzi has formulated a realization of this concept in what has come to be called "computational loop quantum gravity", or CLQG. Other theories that combine aspects of digital physics with loop quantum gravity are those of Marzuoli and Rasetti and Girelli and Livine.

A worthy legacy is the irrevocable consequence of dreaming.

Rick A. Delmonico

[This message has been edited by rad802 (08-16-2009 08:20 AM).]

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