09 May 2008

Big Bang

I read a poem a few days ago that really got me thinking. I didn't realize how influenced I had been by the educational system, and the current thinking of the time. The poem is from the children's book, Science Verse, by Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Lane Smith. It is titled, 'Twas The Night.

'Twas the night before Any Thing, and all through deep space,
Nothing existed-time, matter, or place.
No stockings, no chimneys. It was hotter than hot.
Everything was compressed in one very dense dot.

When out of the nothing there appeared with a clatter
A fat guy with reindeer and something the matter.
His nose was all runny. He gave a sick hack.
"Oh, Dasher! Oh, Dancer! I can't hold it back!"

He huffled and snuffled and sneezed one AH-CHOO!
Then like ten jillion volcanoes, the universe blew.
That dense dot exploded, spewing out starts,
Earth, Venus, Jupiter, Uranus, and Mars,

Helium, hydrogen, the mountains and seas,
The chicken, the egg, the birds and the bees,
Yesterday's newspaper, tomorrow's burnt toast,
Protons and neutrons, your grandma's pork roast.

The universe expanded. The guy said with a wheeze,
"Who will ever believe the world started by sneeze?
So let's call it something much grander, all right?
Merry BIG BANG to all! And to all-Gesundheit!"

I thought this a very funny poem when I first read it. The irony was clear. A sneeze triggering the creation of the universe. Then I thought a little further. The irony was that I believed that the universe started as a tiny speck and is expanding due to the release of infinite mass and energy from an infinitely small point. As I thought even more, what I found to be most interesting was the fact the because the Big Bang is the best model that has been presented thus far, it is accepted as absolute truth by the masses, those who are not astrophysicists.

Is the universe expanding? There is a good chance. Is it certain? No. Could it be that the universe is orbiting, like everything else in the universe, and that we are moving away from the center right now in an elliptical movement. Maybe. I suspect this would give the appearance of expansion from a single point, given the extremely large orbit and our extremely small ability to observe. Perhaps the universe is expanding because a creator at the center is creating more. Maybe we don't understand what we are observing. It wouldn't be the first time. I suspect there are all sorts of other theories out in the world right now. Some much more extreme than what I just said, some much less extreme. My point being, lets not close our mind because we can not understand everything. Maybe everything did explode into existence, but we will never know the truth unless we keep our minds open and explore all possibilities.

Alexis de Toqueville stated, "I am unacquainted with [God's] designs, but I shall not cease to believe in them because I cannot fathom them, and I had rather mistrust my own capacity than His justice." I love this quote. I know God exists. I don't understand how He does everything, but that does not change the fact that He exists and is doing things that I don't understand. Not understanding why and how God does things seems like a poor reason not to believe in Him.

Well, just some random musings. I hope they almost make sense to someone. I know I exist. I know God exists. I know the universe exists. I think it was always here and is just being reorganize.

1 comment:

Deanna said...

I had a science professor in college who said that many people believed that you couldn't be a scientist and a Mormon, but that is all he had learned as a scientist, that he had NEVER found a PROVEN truth that denied anything that we believe or denied His existence. To him, science with all it's studies and understanding was just a way to try to gain more of an understanding of what He knows, and his learning would enable him, as scripture says, to "have so much the advantage in the world to come"