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Sunday, February 10, 2013

There's always something-part I

THERE’S ALWAYS SOMETHING
 
By -, Phoenix Science & Theism Examiner

Part I
 
 
We have a wondering about what came before,
A longing to know the roots of our past,
A searching to understand the secrets of our beginning
A reaching to find the origin of our existence
 
We are beginning a discussion of existence. It will span this and some subsequent articles.
 
 
We regard the universe as comprising all that is material.
The study of the origin of the universe is therefore a study of the origin of all that is material. That is, it is a study of the universe and all that is in it. The result of that study will prove that something must always exist.
 
We will find, however, that the something is neither the universe nor anything within it. The something will be found to have the following seven attributes:

(1) Eternal in existence,

(2) Origin of the universe,

(3) External from the universe,

(4) Non-material,

(5) In possession of infinite power,

(6) Not-detectable by the senses, and

            (7) One individual object.
 
That this discovery can be made is based on Paul’s words, with reference to God, at Romans 1:20:

“There are things about him that people cannot see—his eternal power and all the things that make him God. But since the beginning of the world those things have been easy to understand by what God has made. So people have no excuse for the bad things they do.” (New Century Version)
 
 
When questioning the existence of the universe, there are only three possibilities:
 
(1) The universe has always existed

(2) The universe came from nothing

(3) The universe came from something
 
 
We begin our discussion of existence having the goal of proving which of these is correct.
 
 
COMOGONY / COSMOLOGY

 
Cosmogony is the study of the origin of the universe. Cosmology is the study of the laws which control the universe. Cosmology, however, has been the term used in most recent discussions, as the study of the origin of the universe.



 
 
If we flipped a tape measure around the waist of the Earth, it would read a snug 25,000 (twenty five thousand) miles.
 
 
 Hold one end of that tape measure at the Earth’s core and unravel it to the moon, the line would read 240,000 (two hundred forty thousand) miles. Really get ambitious and anchor one end on the surface of the Sun and dash around in the opposite direction back to the starting point, you measure 3,000,000 (three million) miles.
 
 
The orbit of the moon is about 1,500,000 (one million five hundred thousand) miles. That means we could set the moon, the earth, even the orbit of the moon around the Earth, into the area occupied by the Sun and still have about 1,500,000 (one million five hundred thousand) miles left over.

 

We and the earth are nothing compared to the sun. It holds at least eight planets, their moons, orbiting rocks, assorted dust, and gases. The circumference of the material in the grasp of the Sun stretches to more than 70,000,000,000 (seventy billion) miles.



 
This is the Solar System. It carries the name of its parent star, or sun, Sol. Ninety nine percent (99.9%) of all the material in the Solar System is in the Sun itself.
 
Stars too form systems.
 
These stellar collections contain populations numbering into the billions. The largest of these collections are galaxies. They come in varied shapes and sizes.
Sol is just one of 400,000,000,000 (four hundred billion) stars in what is known as a spiral galaxy.
 
It has the shape of a disk. Our galaxy is rotating such that Sol is moving within the disk, sprinting along at 40 miles a second. Yet our galaxy is so large that it takes 250,000,000 (two hundred fifty million) years for it to make just one rotation.
 
 
At these distances, terms, even in multiples of trillions of miles, is just too small. We need a new kind of measuring rod. This measuring ruler must straight edge distances in excess of multiples of trillions of miles.
 
 It must scope the length, height, width of a galaxy, pace off the distance to our nearest spiral galactic neighbor, span the areas occupied by clusters of galaxies. It must even have the capability to measure the dimensions of the entire Universe.
 
 
Light is the answer!
 
 
LIGHT AS A MEASURING ROD
 

 A ray of light can span a distance of 6,000,000,000,000 (six trillion) miles is one light year. If one light year is six trillion miles, two light years is twelve trillion miles, three light years is eighteen trillion miles, four light years is twenty four trillion miles, five light years is---well, you get the idea. We simply multiply the number of light years times six trillion miles, to get the number of miles. We have linked light years to miles.



 
 
We are now able to use smaller numbers. For instance we can measure immense distances associated with galaxies. Our galaxy, The Milky Way, is 100,000 (a hundred thousand) light years across, 16,000 (sixteen thousand) light years thick. The distance to our nearest neighbor spiral galaxy, Andromeda, is 2,000,000 (two million) light years.
 
 
Both The Milky Way and Andromeda are part of a cluster of galaxies called the Local Group. This collection of galaxies is 6,000,000 (six million) light years across. It stretches over 400,000,000 (four hundred million) light years. This is part of an even greater group of galaxies, called the Super Cluster, 1000,000,000 (a billion) light years in diameter.

 



 The entire visible uiverse is about 28,000,000,000 (28 billion) light years in diameter. The Universe is the largest material thing there is. Now, when we look at these objects that make up this Universe, we get a look back in time.



 LIGHT IS ALSO A TIME MACHINE

 

Light illuminates the path to yesterday. The length of time it takes light to reach us is how far into the past we are seeing. The time lag causes us to see what was, at the light source when light left it.


 


 For us to see, light must first strike the object to be viewed, and then enter our eyes. Although it seems that we see close objects immediately, actually it takes enough time that we always view the after rather than the when.



 It is the 186,000 (one hundred eighty six thousand) miles a second travel time that makes the sighting of near objects seem instantaneous. When the distance between eye and object are large, however, the time lag becomes evident.
 
 
The Sun is 93,000,000 (ninety three million) miles from Earth. To swim that cosmic gulf, light takes eight minutes. The star nearest Sol is Alpha Centauri. Over four years is necessary for its image to ramble the 30,000,000,000,000 (thirty trillion) miles to our human eyes.
 
 
We are seeing the past. Since light meets our eye eight minutes after it departs the Sun, we see that star as it was eight minutes before. We see eight minutes into the past. If somehow the Sun winked out after that, we would not see it disappear for another eight minutes.
 
 
A gaze at Alpha Centauri is a look four years into the past. We see it now, so it was there four years ago. We’ll have to wait four more years to see if it’s there now.
 
 
The Andromeda galaxy is a set of events that saw action 2,000,000,000 (two million) years ago.

 

To observe the nearest galaxy beyond Andromeda in the Local Group of galaxies, is to experience existence as much as 6 million years ago.



 
 
Examining the most distant galaxy in the Super Cluster collection of galaxies is to see 1,000,000,000 (a billion) years in the past.
 
 
Galaxies extend 10,000,000,000 (ten billion) years into the past. From one and a half billion years and extending to about twelve billion years, are other small beacons of light. These have been labeled quasi-stellar (star-like) objects, or quasars.
 
 
 They have the unusual characteristic of putting out a hundred times more energy than a spiral galaxy of four hundred billion stars. They appear to be the centers of present day galaxies as they appeared in the past undergoing extreme forces of gravity.
Most galaxies are moving away from each other.
 
 
The farther back in the past we look, the greater distance from Earth we view, the closer they were to each other. By looking at the speed of these galaxies and their distances from each other, we find that every galaxy-sized object in the in the universe was squeezed together at a specific time in the far past.
 
 
In There’s Always Something, Part II, we will see how the striking impact of gravity directs us to the correct conclusion about the existence of the universe.
 
 
Some References
 
 
1. Livio, Mario (2000). The Accelerating Universe: Infinite Expansion, the Cosmological Constant, and the Beauty of the Cosmos, John Wiley & Sons, New York
 
 
2. Dickinson, T. (2004). The Universe and Beyond. Firefly Books Ltd., Toronto, Canada
 
 
3. Editors: Horwood, Blondel, and Mason. (2006) Solar System Update. Springer-Praxis
 
 
4. Lindley, Thomas (2008). Eternal Origin, Xlibris Corporation, New Jersey
 
, Phoenix Science & Theism Examiner
Tom is a mathematician working as a technical consultant for NASA and commercial companies. He researches and writes about purely scientific proof that the entity described as God in the Holy Bible, the Qur'an, and the Tanakh must exist. Such research led to his writing the three-volume book...

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