Below you will find a nice collection of quotes from Eric Lerner's book;
'The Big Bang Never Happened'.
However, the most compelling arguments against the big bang cosmology theory are;
1. We can deduce the most simple science theory of reality - which then leads to the most simple cosmology theory where our observable universe exists as a finite spherical region of infinite eternal space.
2. From this most simple cosmology we find simple sensible explanations to the many problems of the big bang theory of cosmology.
Cosmology is profound because it shows that we humans (all matter) are universal structures! Discrete and separate 'bodies' are an illusion of our limited senses and how these are represented to us by our minds.
But I was soon to learn it was still difficult for people to change their views of the heavens.
In our century the cosmological pendulum has swung back. The universe of
present-day cosmology is more like that of Ptolemy and Augustine than that
of Galileo and Kepler. Like the medieval cosmos, the modern universe is
finite in time- it began in the Big Bang, and will end either in a Big Crunch
or in slow decay and dissipation of all matter.
A universe of unlimited progress from an infinite past to an infinite future makes sense when society is advancing. But when that advance halts, when the idea of progress is mocked by the century of Verdun, Auschwitz, and Hiroshima, when the prospect of human betterment is dim, we should not be surprised that the decaying cosmos again rises to dominance.
And since, as history abundantly shows, people's views of the universe
are bound up with their views of themselves and of their society, this debate
has implications far beyond the realm of science, for the core of the cosmological
debate is a question of how truth is known.
How these questions are answered will shape not only the history of science, but the history of humanity.
The emerging revolution in science extends beyond cosmology. Today the study of the underlying structure of matter, particle physics, is intimately tied up with cosmology- the structure of the universe, theorists argue, is the result of events in the first instants of time. If the Big Bang hypothesis is wrong, then the foundation of modern particle physics collapses and entirely new approaches are required. Indeed, particle physics also suffers from an increasing contradiction between theory and experiment.
Equally important, if the Big Bang never occurred our concept of time must change as well. Instead of a universe finite in time, running down from a fiery start to a dusty, dark finish, the universe will be infinite in duration, continuously evolving. Just such a concept of time as evolution is now emerging from new studies in the field of thermodynamics.
My aim is to explain these new ideas to the general reader, one who is interested in the crucial issues of science but who has no special training in the subject. I believe that if the issues are presented clearly, readers will be able to judge the validity of the arguments involved in this debate.
This history, then, involves more than the history of cosmology, or even of science. One of the basic (although far from original) themes of this book is that science is intimately tied up with society, that ideas about society, about events here on earth, affect ideas about the universe- and vice versa. This interaction is not limited to the world of ideas. A society's social, political and economic structures have a vast effect on how people think; and scientific thought, through its impact on technology, can greatly change the course of economic and social evolution.
My conflict with conventional physics started when I was an undergraduate at Columbia in the mid-sixties. Physics itself interested me, learning why things happen as they do- mathematics was merely a tool to understand and test the underlying physical concepts. That was not the way physics was taught; instead, mathematical techniques were emphasized. This is almost exclusively what students are still tested on, and obviously study the most.
The only test of scientific truth is how well a theory corresponds to the world we observe. Does it predict things that we can then see? Or do our observations of nature show things that a theory says are impossible? No matter how well liked a theory may be, if observation contradicts it, then it must be rejected. For science to be useful, it must provide an increasingly true and deep description of nature, not a prescription of what nature must be.
In the past four years crucial observations have flatly contradicted the
assumptions and predictions of the Big Bang. Because the Big Bang supposedly
occurred only about twenty billion years ago, nothing in the cosmos can
be older than this. Yet in 1986 astronomers discovered that galaxies compose
huge agglomerations a billion light-years across; such mammoth clustering
of matter must have taken a hundred billion years to form. Just as early
geological theory, which sought to compress the earth's history into a biblical
few thousand years crumbled when confronted with the aeons needed to build
up a mountain range, so the concept of a Big Bang is undetermined by the
existence of these vast and ancient superclusters of galaxies.
These enormous ribbons of matter, whose reality was confirmed during 1990, also refute a basic premise of the Big Bang - that the universe was, at its origin, perfectly smooth and homogeneous. Theorists admit that they can see no way to get from the perfect universe of the Big Bang to the clumpy, imperfect universe of today. As one leading theorist, George Field of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, put it, "There is a real crisis".
Other conflicts with observation have emerged as well. Dark matter, a hypothetical
and unobserved form of matter, is an essential component of current Big
Bang theory- an invisible glue that holds it all together. Yet Finnish and
American astronomers, analyzing recent observations, have shown that the
mysterious dark matter isn't invisible- it doesn't exist. Using sensitive
new instruments, other astronomers around the world have discovered extremely
old galaxies that apparently formed long before the Big Bang universe could
have cooled sufficiently. In fact, by the end of the eighties, new contradictions
were popping up every few months.
In all of this, cosmologists have remained entirely unshaken in their acceptance of the theory.
... cosmologists, with few exceptions, have either dismissed the observations
as faulty, or have insisted that minor modifications of Big Bang theory
will reconcile "apparent" contradictions. A few cosmic strings
or dark particles are needed- nothing more.
This response is not surprising: most cosmologists have spent all of their careers, or at least the past twenty-five years, elaborating various aspects of the Big Bang. It would be very difficult for them, as for any scientist, to abandon their life's work. Yet the observers who bring forward these contradictions are also not at all ready to give up the Big Bang. Observing astronomers have generally left the interpretation of data to the far more numerous theoreticians. And until recently there seemed to be no viable alternative to the Big Bang - nowhere to go if you jumped ship.
While galaxies are a mere hundred thousand light-years across and clusters not more than ten million or so, a supercluster might snake through a few hundred million light-years of space.
It turns out that galaxies almost never move much faster than a thousand kilometers per second, about one-three-hundredths as fast as the speed of light.
Simply put, if Tully's objects exist, the universe cannot have begun twenty billion years ago.
In 1990 the existence of these huge objects was confirmed by several teams of astronomers. The most dramatic work was that of Margaret J. Geller and John P. Huchra of the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, who are mapping galaxies within about six hundred million light-years of earth. In November of 1989 they announced their latest results, revealing what they called the "Great Wall", a huge sheet a galaxies stretching in every direction off the region mapped. The sheet, more than two hundred million light-years across and seven hundred million light-years long, but only about twenty million light-years thick, coincides with a part of one of the supercluster complexes mapped by Tully. The difference is that the new results involve over five thousand individual galaxies, and thus are almost impossible to question as statistical flukes.
In 1889 Samuel Pierpont Langley, a famed astronomer, president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and soon to be the one of the pioneers of aviation, described the scientific community as "a pack of hounds ... where the louder-voiced bring many to follow them nearly as often in a wrong path as in a right one, where the entire pack even has been known to move off bodily on a false scent."
The current system of specialized peer review originated in the late nineteenth
and early twentieth centuries, as science became more closely tied to, and
supported by, large-scale capitalist enterprise. While inventor-entrepreneurs
like Thomas Edison chose for themselves what to research, the later financier-industrialists
wanted the "quality of work" guaranteed in advance. So they, together
with leading academics, encouraged the idea of peer review- the inspection
of scientific work by the "best authorities" in a given field.
At the same time, the growing industrialization of scientific research led to an increasing level of specialization. The older generation of scientists had picked their research topics according to their own interests and often hopped across an entire field (as the best twentieth-century scientists continue to do). But as scientific research became organized in large-scale industrial labs, and as university work fell under the sway of industrial concerns, research came to focus on specific topics of commercial need, and scientists were encouraged to devote their entire career to single specialties.
The combination of growing specialization and the peer-review system have fractured science into isolated domains, each with a built-in tendency toward theoretical orthodoxy and a hostility to other disciplines.
Evidence that "interdisciplinarification" does, in fact, fight orthodoxy and encourage the development of new ideas is in the willingness of Nobel Prize committees to recognize mavericks like Alfven and Prigogine. The committees consist of representatives from the whole broad field, such as physics or chemistry, and so they do not respect the specific orthodoxies of a given specialty and are far better able to judge a scientist's work on its merit, no matter how controversial it may be.
When scientists are specialized," Alfven comments, "it's easy for orthodoxy to develop. The same individuals who formulate orthodox theory enforce it by reviewing papers submitted to journals, and grant proposals as well. From this standpoint, I think the Catholic Church was too much blamed in the case of Galileo- he was just a victim of peer review.
The ability of a scientific theory to be refuted is the key criterion that distinguishes science. If a theory cannot be refuted, if there is no observation that will disprove it, then nothing can prove it - it cannot predict anything, it is a worthless myth.
In his major work, paradoxically entitled On Learned Ignorance, Nicholas,
returned to the central idea of Anaxagoras- an infinite, unlimited universe.
In contrast to Ptolemy's finite cosmos circumscribed by concentric spheres
with earth at their center, Nicholas argued that the universe has no limits
in space, no beginning or ending in time. God is not located outside the
finite universe, he is everywhere and nowhere, transcending space and time.
Nicholas's infinite universe is populated by an unlimited number of stars and planets, and, of course, has no center, no single immobile place of rest. The earth, he reasoned, must therefore move, like everything else in the universe. It appears at rest only because we're on it, moving with it. He cast aside the geocentric cosmos entirely.
To one of the Manhattan Project scientists, George Gamow, the detonation of an A-bomb constituted an analogy for the origin of the universe: if an A-bomb can, in a hundred-millionth of a second, create elements still detected in the desert years later, why can't a universal explosion lasting a few seconds have produced the elements we see today, billions of years later? In a paper in the fall of 1946, Gamow put forward his idea, a second version of the Big Bang. Unlike Lemaitre, he took as observational proof of his hypothesis the abundance of the elements, not cosmic rays; but like him, Gamow assumed that this abundance could not have been produced by any process continuing in the present-day universe.
Unlike Lemaitre, Gamow had a tremendous flair for publicizing and popularizing
his own theories, a flair that, within a few years, would establish his
element theory- soon to be dubbed the Big Bang, ironically, by its detractors
- as the dominant cosmology. His propagandist talents are demonstrated in
the first sentence of the article proposing his views - "It
is generally agreed at present that the relative abundance of the various
chemical elements were determined by physical conditions existing in the
universe during the earlier stages of its expansion" - which
was not at all the case: only a handful of scientists had accepted Lemaitre's
primeval atom and perhaps only two or three believed that this could explain
the origin of the elements.
But if it hadn't been true before, Gamow changed that: in 1947 he published the immensely popular and well-written book, One, Two, Three, Infinity, which gave a lively and sweeping overview of modern physical science and astronomy. The last chapter presents the Big Bang as accepted fact.
Gamow's persuasive writing and his use of the analogy to the A-bomb, so
vivid to the entire post-war population, made his theory plausible to the
lay world of science writers and readers. I grew up in the fifties, and
remember how exciting I found his books, which were among those that turned
me toward physics and astronomy. Gamow's idea had an immediate appeal to
his colleagues in nuclear science as well.
Yet the rapid and widespread acceptance of Gamow's theory of a temporally finite universe was as sharp a break with past scientific thinking as Einstein's spatially finite universe had been. The Big Bang completed the swing of the cosmological pendulum, to the medieval universe- finite in extent, having a definite origin in an instant in time, and created by a process no longer at work in the universe. Gamow's Big Bang was a rejection of nearly all the premises that had evolved over the course of the past few hundred years of scientific development- the infinite nature of the universe, and the assumption that its evolution could be described in terms of processes observable here and now.
To the average layman the theory was certainly a shocking and fascinating
one. Yet it seemed another insult to common sense, as Einstein's had been.
If the universe had an origin in time, what came before it? What started
it? The Big Bang seemed, on the surface, an invitation to hypothesize some
supernatural power as the initiator of this titanic explosion.
Moreover, even before it was proposed, Gamow's theory of the origin of the elements had been undercut. Gamow had argued that the stars' temperatures are too low to create elements heavier than helium. From nuclear experiments it was known that hydrogen would fuse to form helium at temperatures as low as ten million degrees, which are known to exist at a star's core. But fusing helium to carbon requires much greater temperatures- more than a billion degrees- because the more protons there are in a nucleus the more they repel other nuclei, so far more energy is needed to overcome this repulsion and fuse.
Gamow contended that because these high temperatures couldn't be achieved
by stars, the heavier elements must have been formed in the more intense
heat of the Big Bang. But in April of 1946, several months before the publication
of Gamow's theory, British astronomer Fred Hoyle put forward an alternative
hypothesis involving stars that have exhausted their hydrogen fuel. In an
normal star, hydrogen is converted to helium in the dense hot core of the
star. The tremendous pressure generated by the radiation pushing outward
from this core supports the rest of the star, preventing it from collapsing
under its own gravity. As the core of the star is depleted of hydrogen,
it contracts, increasing its temperature, and burning the remaining fuel
faster - thus preventing the overall collapse of the star.
Once the core is entirely converted to helium, no more fusion of hydrogen can take place; there is nothing to support the weight of the star, so it rapidly contracts, and as it does, the temperature swiftly increases at the core. Hoyle calculated that the temperature would soon reach the billion or so degrees needed to start the fusion of helium to carbon. Once again, the energy pouring out of the core would support the weight of the star, stopping its contraction, until the helium is consumed. This process would continue, producing oxygen from carbon, and so on, eventually building up all the elements, either by fusion or by the same neutron-capture process Gamow used in the Big Bang. And with each contraction the star would spin more rapidly, eventually spewing much of its mass into space.
Hoyle accounted for the production of heavy elements by a process that continues into the present-day universe, and thus can - unlike the Big Bang - be verified. Moreover, he calculated that this process would produce the elements in roughly the observed proportions. Had the Big Bang occurred, the two processes together would have produced more heavy elements than are actually observed.
... in 1957, after years of steady work- aided by advances in nuclear physics and stellar observations- Margaret and Gregory Burbridge, William Fowler and Hoyle published a comprehensive and detailed theory showing how stellar systems could produce all the known elements in proportions very close to those observed to exist. In addition, the theory accounted for the growing evidence that the elementary composition varies from star to star, something that would not be possible if the elements were produced by the Big Bang. The new theory was rapidly accepted as substantially correct.
The researchers showed that the most common elements - helium, carbon,
oxygen, nitrogen, and all the other elements lighter than iron - are built
up by fusion processes in stars. The more massive the star, the farther
the fusion process can proceed, until it develops iron; at that point no
more energy can be derived from fusion, since the iron nucleus is the most
stable of all. Thus, when a star exhausts its fuel, it collapses, and the
unburned outer layers of the star suddenly mix as they fall into the intensely
high temperatures of the core. The star explodes as a supernova, a "little
bang", that outshines an entire galaxy for a year. In this explosion,
the heavier nuclei absorb still more neutrons, thereby building up the heaviest
elements, including radioactive ones like uranium. This explosion scatters
the new elements into space, where they later condense into new stars and
planets. The earth and the entire solar system was, five billion years ago,
formed from the debris not of the Big Bang but of a supernova.
... just as Lemaitre's Big Bang failed when cosmic rays were shown to be produced in the present-day universe rather than the distant past, so Gamow's failed when the chemical elements were shown to be produced by present-day stars.
The annual number of cosmology papers published skyrocketed from sixty in 1965 to over five hundred in 1980, yet this growth was almost solely in purely theoretical work: by 1980 roughly 95 percent of these papers were devoted to various mathematical models, such as the "Bianchi type XI universe." By the mid-seventies, cosmologists' confidence was such that they felt able to describe in intimate detail events of the first one-hundredth second of time, several billion years ago. Theory increasingly took on the characteristics of myth- absolute, exact knowledge about events in the distant past but an increasingly hazy understanding of how they led to the cosmos we now see, and an increasing rejection of observation.
In astrophysics too theoreticians relied on extensive data from nuclear
scientists and their accelerators, or on observers' giant radio and optical
telescopes- or on even more expensive satellites. By contrast, theoretical
cosmologists seemingly need no data at all. A few, especially in the later
seventies, started using computers for simulations; but most of their time-consuming
calculations needed nothing more than paper and pencil. Cosmology was scientific
research on the cheap!
The tremendous growth of the theoretical side inevitably biased the entire field against observation, which became secondary to the "real" work of manipulating equations. Cosmologists came to look down on the observing astronomer who spent long nights at the telescope.
It took no great insight to realize that if the Big Bang theory was basically
wrong, as had been thought as recently as the early sixties, then these
researchers were simply wasting time and talent. A challenge to the Big
Bang theory would threaten the careers of several hundred researchers. It
could hardly be surprising that by the end of the seventies virtually no
papers challenging the Big Bang in any way were accepted for presentation
at major conventions or in publication in major journals. It became simply
inconceivable that the Big Bang could be wrong- it was a matter of faith.
Yet in the course of this golden age, not a single new confirmation of the theory had emerged. No new phenomena predicted by theoreticians had been observed, or any additional feature of the universe explained. In fact, serious conflicts between theory and observation were developing.
The first and most serious was the problem of the origin of the galaxies and other large-scale inhomogeneities in the universe. The extreme smoothness of the microwave background posed another, more theoretical problem. According to Big Bang theory, points in the universe separated by more than the distance light can have traversed since the universe began (about ten or twenty billion light-years) can have no effect on one another. As a result, parts of the sky separated by more than a few degrees would lie beyond each other's sphere of influence. So how did the microwave background achieve such a uniform temperature?
As the eighties progressed, the level of theoretical fancy rose higher. The Higgs field began to produce objects like cosmic strings; these too served to explain away such problems as galaxy formation. Finally cosmologists took off on their own, going the particle theorists one better by postulating quantum gravitational theories that bring gravity under the same theoretical framework as the GUTs' three forces. From this effort came the most bizarre theoretical innovation of the eighties- baby universes- pioneered by Stephen Hawking. At the scale of 10 -33 cm, less than one-million-trillionth of a proton's diameter, space itself is, according to this idea, a sort of quantum foam, randomly shaping and unshaping itself; from this, tiny bubbles of space-time form, connected to the rest by narrow umbilical cords called wormholes. These bubbles, once formed, then undergo their own Big Bangs, producing complete universes, connected to our own only by wormholes 10 -33 cm across. Thus from every cubic centimeter of our space, some 10 to the 143 or so universes come into existence every second, all connected to ours by tiny wormholes, and all in their turn giving birth to myriad new universes- as our own universe itself emerged from a parent universe. It is a vision that seems to beg for some form of cosmic birth control.
During this entire period, none of the cosmologists' speculations received observational confirmation- in fact, the foundations of this theoretical structure were being undercut. Even with dark matter, the Big Bang still could not account for the low level of microwave anisotropy, or the formation of galaxies and stars. Nor could it accommodate Tully's large-scale supercluster complexes. And the dark matter itself was ruled out by new observation and analysis. The Big Bang in all its versions has flunked every test, yet it remains the dominant cosmology; and the tower of theoretical entities and hypotheses climbs steadily higher. The cosmological pendulum has swung fully again.
Today's cosmologists have, as Alfven puts it, "taken
Plato's advice to concentrate on the theoretical side and pay no attention
to observational detail."
They are creating a perfect edifice of pure thought incapable of being refuted by mere appearances.
They have thus returned to a form of mathematical myth. A myth, after all, is just a story of origins, which is based on belief alone, and as such cannot be refuted by logic or evidence. Neither can the Big Bang. Entire careers in cosmology have now been built on theories which have never been subjected to observational test, or have failed such tests and been retained nonetheless. The basic assumption of the medieval cosmos - a universe created from nothing, doomed to final destruction, governed by perfect mathematical laws that can be found by reason alone - are now the assumptions of modern cosmology.
Certainly this development is due in part to the growing legitimacy within
cosmology of a purely deductive method, justified by Einstein himself. In
1933 he said,
"It is my conviction that pure mathematical construction enables us to discover the concepts and the laws connecting them, which gives us the key to the understanding of nature ... In a certain sense, therefore, I hold it true that pure thought can grasp reality, as the ancients dreamed."
Today's cosmologists, with the support of this lofty authority, proudly proclaim that they have abandoned experimental method and instead derive new laws from mathematical reasoning. As George Field says, "I believe the best method is to start with exact theories, like Einstein's, and derive results from them."
As we have seen, Einstein himself did not use this deductive method in making his great breakthroughs. More important, I think, he would have been horrified to see what his words have been used to justify: even in his unsuccessful later work he ruthless rejected theories clearly contradicted by observation. Yet today's cosmologists take the deductive method as a rationalization for clinging to long-disproven theories, modifying them into bizarre towers of ad hoc hypotheses and complexities- something Einstein, the lover of simplicity and beauty in both nature and mathematics, would never have tolerated.
If the wealthiest members of society earned billions by mere manipulation of numbers, without building a single factory or mill, it didn't seem to strange that scientific reputations could be made with theories that have no more relation to reality. If a tower of financial speculation could be built on debt - the promise of future payment - then, similarly, a tower of cosmological speculation could be built on promises of future experimental confirmation.
Fortunately for science, even the perfection of existing technologies, such as the computer, requires a broad base of scientific research. But it is fundamental research- investigations whose findings don't seem to be immediately useful- that suffer first when technological development slows. Today those areas are clearly cosmology and particle or high-energy physics- where the link between science and technology, theory and human progress, has been broken almost completely. It is here that, as in post classical Greece, the stagnation of society has led to the return of mathematical myths, a retreat from the problems of base matter to the serene contemplation of numbers.
When Alfven and his colleagues were developing an alternative cosmology, he opened a broad attack on the methodological and philosophical underpinnings of the Big Bang. In 1978 he formulated the broad thesis that I have elaborated here- that the Big Bang is a return to an essentially mythical cosmology. Over the millennia, Alfven argued, cosmology has alternated between a mythical and scientific approach - an alternation he termed the cosmological pendulum.
The difference between myth and science is the difference between divine
inspiration of 'unaided reason' (as Bertrand Russell puts it) on one hand
and theories developed in observational contact with the real world on the
other, Alfven writes.
The Ptolemaic system - based on the unquestioned acceptance of the unchanging heavens, the centrality of earth, and the necessity of perfect circular motion - is a mythical cosmology. The Copernican system, as perfected by Kepler and Galileo, is an empirical one: ellipses are not more beautiful than circles, but they are the planets' orbits.
Since it is without empirical support, Alfven concluded, the Big Bang is a myth, a wonderful myth maybe, which deserves a place of honor in the columbarium which already contains the Indian myth of a cyclic Universe, the Chinese cosmic egg, the Biblical myth of creation in six days, the Ptolemaic cosmological myth, and many others.
The reason why so many attempts have been made to guess what the state several billion years ago is probably the general belief that long ago the state of the Universe must have been much simpler, much more regular than today, indeed so simple that it could be represented by a mathematical model which could be derived from some fundamental principles through very ingenious thinking. Except for some vague and unconvincing reference to the second law of thermodynamics, no reasonable scientific motivation for this belief seems to have been given. This belief probably emanates from the old myths of creation. God established a perfect order and "harmony" and it should be possible to find which principles he followed when he did so. He was certainly intelligent enough to understand the general theory of relativity, and if He did, why shouldn't He create the Universe according to its wonderful principles?"
"Worst of all, this approach allows theory to rule over observation, like the Ptolemaic astronomers who refused to look through Galileo's telescope. Today cosmology is the hands of scientists who ... ' had never visited a laboratory or looked through a telescope, and even if they had, it was below their dignity to get their hands dirty. They looked down on the experimental physicists and the observers whose only job was to confirm the high-brow conclusions they had reached, and those who were not able to confirm them were thought to be incompetent. Observing astronomers came under heavy pressure from theoreticians. The result was the development of a cosmological establishment, like that of the Ptolemaic orthodoxy, which did not tolerate objections or dissent.
Once I found Halton Arp's Atlas of Peculiar galaxies, it was beautiful. I could link up each picture of a galaxy with some stage of one of my simulations and I knew exactly what forces - electromagnetic forces - were shaping the galaxies. (Peratt)
The central radio source and emerging jets looked exactly like quasars and active galactic nuclei that emit such jets- which has long been observed, and which Alfven had theorized plasma processes can generate. Evidently there is no need for a black hole at the galactic center to generate such energy, because trapped magnetic energy, squeezed by the pinch effect, can do the trick even better.
Quasars appear to be only a light-year across, compared with the one hundred
thousand light years of a galaxy and the ten thousand light-years cell-size
of his stimulation.
In 1989, however, new evidence developed which will probably doom the black-hole hypothesis. Gas and plasma near the center of galaxies has always been observed to move at a high velocity, up to 1500 km/sec for our own galaxy, and similar or higher values for others. These velocities are generally treated as evidence for a black hole whose powerful gravitational field has trapped the swirling gases. But the two scientists at the University of Arizona, G.H and M.J. Rieke, carefully measured the velocities of stars within a few light-years of the center of our galaxy, and found the velocities are no higher than 70km/sec, twenty times slower than the plasma velocities measured in the same area. Since the stars must respond to any gravitational force, their low velocities show that no black hole exists. The high-speed gases must therefore be trapped only by a magnetic field, which does not affect the stars.
Tully's results quickly became a hot topic in cosmological circles. However, any alternative to the Big Bang remained almost unknown, since plasma cosmology was routinely rejected by astrophysical journals, and our papers were published only in plasma physics journals, which astronomers never read.
If the Big Bang is wrong, then many of the basic ideas of fundamental physics are wrong as well. The same methods that have led cosmology into a blind alley have also simultaneously stalled the advance of knowledge of the structure of matter and energy.
Fundamental or particle physics, the study of the underlying structure of matter and energy, focuses on the effort to unify the basic forces of nature. As far as is known, the interactions of matter can be described in terms of four forces: gravitation, electromagnetism, and two nuclear forces- the strong force responsible for keeping the nucleus together (the source of nuclear energy), and the weak force responsible for radioactivity and the decay of the nucleus.
As we've seen, over a century ago Maxwell unified two previously separated
but related forces - electricity and magnetism - into a single force, electromagnetism,
and elaborated its laws and many of its properties. Similarly, today's fundamental
physicists hope to develop a theory that will unify all four forces, and
thereby to explain the nature of the particles that make up matter - electrons,
protons, neutrons, and a host of others.
In itself, this is a fine idea: science has frequently advanced by unifying hitherto distinct phenomena under a single theoretical concept. But it has also advanced by discovering new phenomena not covered by any previous theory. The problem in presenting particle physicists' search for such unified theories is that it is based overwhelmingly on certain mathematical concepts derived from pure reason, rather than on observation. Moreover, this theory is viewed not as the next step in an unlimited search for knowledge but as the Holy Grail of science, the final absolute knowledge that will explain the universe and everything in it, a Theory of Everything.
The goal of this work is nothing less than a complete explanation of the
universe, to be achieved within the lifetime of many
of those working today, as Stephen Hawking puts it. Such a Theory
of Everything will explain not only the four forces, all the particles,
the universe itself, galaxies, stars, planets, and people, but it will also
be so simple a set of equations that it can be written
on a T-shirt. Or, as John Wheeler of the University of Texas puts
it, To my mind there must be at the bottom of it all,
not an equation, but an utterly simple idea. And to me that idea, when we
finally discover it, will be so compelling, so inevitable, that we will
say to one another, 'Oh, how beautiful. How could it have been otherwise?
Such a theory will complete the main task of science, leaving only a mopping up of details, except for one major question, in Hawking's view: Why does the universe exist? Once we know the answer to that final question we will then achieve final knowledge; we will, in his words, know the mind of God.
So we should not be surprised that today cosmology remains entangled with religion. From theologians to physicists to novelists, it is widely believed that the Big Bang theory supports Christian concepts of a creator. In February of 1989, for example, the front-page article of the New York Times Book Review argued that scientists and novelists were returning to God, in large part through the influence of the Big Bang.
Astrophysicist Robert Jastrow echoes the same theme in his widely noted
God and the Astronomers: the Big Bang of the astronomers is simply the scientific
version of Genesis, a universe created in an instant, therefore the work
of a creator. These ideas are repeated in a dozen or more popular books
on cosmology and fundamental physics.
Such thinking is not limited to physicists and novelists, who could perhaps be dismissed as amateur theologians. Ever since 1951, when Pope Pius XII asserted that the still-new Big Bang supports the doctrine of creation ex nihilo, Catholic theologians have used it in this way. The pope wrote in an address to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences,
In fact, it seems that present-day science, with one sweeping step back across millions of centuries, has succeeded in bearing witness to that primordial 'Fiat lux' [Let there be light] uttered at the moment when, along with matter, there burst forth from nothing a sea of light and radiation, while the particles of the chemical elements split and formed into millions of galaxies ... Hence, creation took place in time, therefore, there is a Creator, God exists!
To many in the Judeo-Christian tradition, the idea of a universe infinite
in time and space is not allowed for the same reasons Augustine argued two
millennia ago: infinity is exclusive to the deity, and thus prohibited for
the material universe. To say that the universe is unlimited is to obscure
a crucial difference between God and nature, and thus to advocate pantheism-
the idea that nature itself is inherently divine and, perhaps, needs no
God. Thus a belief in an infinite cosmology implies heresy. Such reasoning
is intimately linked to the arguments used against Nicholas of Cusa, Copernicus
and Giordano Bruno hundreds of years ago. For many theologians they have
lost none of their force today.
For many this all proves that the meaning of the universe resides in a progress toward God to be achieved in the last judgment. But to many existentialists (and physicists) this vision is one of complete meaninglessness. Bertrand Russell, for example, writes: "All the labor of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius are destined to extinction in the death of the solar system- all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand.
Cosmologists such as Edward Harrison describe a similar end: The stars begin to fade like guttering candles and are snuffed out one by one. Out in the depths of space the great celestial cities, the galaxies cluttered with the memorabilia of ages, are gradually dying. Tens of billions of years pass in the growing darkness ... of a universe condemned to become a galactic graveyard.
Paul Davies, another cosmologist, writes: No natural agency, intelligent or otherwise, can delay forever the end of the universe. Only a supernatural God could try to wind it up again.
The ability of human society to make increasingly better use of energy flows by increasing the level of technology would preclude both an end to life and even an end to the growth of life. Cosmic pessimism is unsupported by science.
... the idea that the evolution of humankind is purely an accident, divinely engineered or otherwise, ignores the vast mass of evidence that there are long-term trends in biological evolution. Over these millions of years there has been an irregular but unmistakable tendency toward adaptability to a greater range of environments, culminating in human adaptation to virtually any environment. Over this period the intelligence of the most developed animals on earth has risen with increasing speed, from trilobites, to fish, to amphibians, to the dinosaurs, to mammals, to primates, to the hominid apes and the direct ancestors of humankind.
Of course, through this long period there have been many chance events,
many zigs and zags, advances and setbacks, which determined the exact timing
and mode of the development of a creature capable of social evolution. Yet
this unpredictability in no way erases the long-term tendency that makes
the development of higher levels of intelligence, and eventually something
resembling human beings, all but inevitable - as inevitable as the development
of amino acids in a primal chemical soup.
Thus we find that the apparently improbable accidents of the universe are neither the products of a random and incomprehensible cosmos nor evidence for a designing creator. Rather, they are misinterpretations of the general evolution of the universe.
The old cosmology and the old physics leave humanity with a choice between despair at contemplating a purposeless cosmos and abandonment of the scientific project and the ascription to the deity of all that science can not explain. In either case a gap is created between a rational humanity and a fundamentally irrational, incomprehensible nature - whether or not it is guided by God.
If as a result of some interior revolution, I were to lose in succession my faith in Christ, my faith in a personal God, and my faith in spirit, I feel that I should continue to believe invincibly in the world. The world (its value, its infallibility and its goodness) - that , when all is said and done is the first, the last and the only thing in which I believe. It is by this faith that I live. (Teilhard de Chardin, "How I Believe").
What is precluded by the new cosmology is the allocation of the mysteries
left by bad science to the charge of a deity so clumsy as to leave his calling
cards as incomprehensibilities written across the galaxies or in the equations
of physics. It assumes that the universe is intelligible and that the scientific
method can push back the frontiers of ignorance, so that no mystery will
remain forever unexplained."
"Once more, in the past twenty years, we have been faced with the paradox of a gigantic unfilled need for goods, for food, clothing, and housing, side by side with a "lack of markets," a saturation of the market for goods that can be sold at a profit. While children in Latin America lack clothing, clothing manufacturers are closing in the United States. While cities fall into decay and millions go homeless, steel mills are dismantled as unprofitable.
As the 1989 report of UNICEF put it:
Three years ago, former Tanzanian President Julius Nyerere asked the question, "must we starve our children to pay our debts?" That question has been answered in practice. And the answer has been "Yes". In those three years hundreds of thousands of the world's children have given their lives to pay their countries' debts, and many millions more are still paying the interest with their malnourished minds and bodies.
We have three other essays on various problems of the Big Bang Theory (all are very good) which provide compelling evidence that the Big Bang theory is wrong. Most importantly we can now also show that the most simple cosmology, founded on infinite eternal space, explains and solves these problems of cosmology relating to the Big Bang theory.
'The Gift of Truth Excels all Other Gifts.' (Buddha)
One of the top ten shops at Cafepress for the past two years (out of 3 million shops!).
A brilliant collection of portraits and quotes from 500 of the greatest minds in human history.
|Large Posters - Small Posters - Mini Poster Prints - Framed Poster Panel Prints - 2010 Wall Calendars - Journals / Diaries - Postcards - Greeting Cards - Mousepads - Bumper Stickers - Coffee Cups, Mugs & Beer Steins - Wall / Time Clocks - Buttons / Badges - Fridge Magnets - Jewelry Box & Coasters|
Ancient Greek Philosophy
Chinese Indian Metaphysics
20th Century Philosophers
Physics Prints Science Quote
God Religion Morality
Famous Leader Politics
Evolution Life Nature Ecology
Metaphysical Poets & Poetry
Literature Books Authors
Women Feminism Art
Renaissance Fine Art Prints
Satire Humor Funny Jokes
|Unique Custom Printed Tees - Men's Women's White T-Shirts - Men's Women's Black T-Shirts - Longsleeve T Shirts Hooded Sweatshirts - Women's Long Sleeve Clothing - Tight Sexy Ladies Clothes - Men's & Women's Boxer Shorts / Boxers - Women's Intimate Lingerie: Erotic Thongs / Sexy Slips - Cotton Canvas Printed Tote Bag & Messenger Bags - Children / Infant / Kids Clothes - Printed Kitchen Chef BBQ Cooking Aprons - Baseball Caps & Trucker Hats - Dog Clothes|
Truth & Reality
The Spherical Standing Wave Structure of Matter (WSM) in Space
Theory of Reality
Unity of Reality
Logic & Reality
Special & General
of Light & Matter
& Infinite Space
Truth & Reality
Truth & Reality