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The eternal universe....

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Okay, let's all pause to remember the film Men in Black...got the image? Now remember the cat with that bauble hanging around its neck which contained a galaxy. I thought that was a pretty cool concept. Now look at this:


What do you say to the idea that our universe has always been and always will be? I will miss the big bang, what a sight that must have been although the human race wasn't around to see it...but were there others?

I have often expounded on the lack of proof for a deity, and even if there was some proof, that we as mere humans would be too ignorant to understand it. Much can be said for the big bang...it is beyond our comprehension. I embrace the concept of alien life forms and certainly hope they are smarter than us. I might even embrace the idea that God is a super intelligent alien life form.

Humans always think we are the pinnacle, the ultimate creature in our galaxy. Such ego and self aggrandizement is slowly killing our planet. Perhaps we are nothing more than an experiment in some gigantic alien laboratory. That is also cool until you stop to think about what happens to experiments gone wrong or labs running out of funding. I wish them better luck next time.

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I swear I think these theories go in circles.

This is where I came from in the seventies: the steady state universe.

Ah yes... but here are the unresolved problems with that model...

And here we go again.

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It's very important to recognise the two ways that the word theory is used.

In the colloquial sense a theory is generally a hypothetical, or a conjectural statement based on intuitive logic, at best.

Scientifically, a (rational) theory is an argument with, evidence, as an explanation for an observed phenomena.

As such the scientific use is much closer, subject to testing, to the next stage of becoming "a law."

e.g. we no longer speak of the theory of gravity, it is generally accepted, and called, the "the law of gravity."

Whereas the big bang theory is exactly what it implies, an explanation based on evidence for the beginning of the universe.

Theories which are mere conjecture are useful means to question an observation but until evidence is presented, it really is nothing more than common conjecture or an idea from our imagination. As such it is a very useful starting point, but should not be considered as a scientific theory which offers explanation backed by evidence.

Scientific theory is of course, open to challenge by new evidence, but common use of theory as an idea seems to be what most people understand when they say, "It's only a theory," implying no evidence is forthcoming.

Discussion and evidence (fossil) of the theory of evolution by Darwin, and what we have come to understand based on his work, shows us that it is a theory on very solid ground as no scientific evidence has been found to confront the theory. So much so, in fact, many people regard or treat evolutionary theory as having adequate evidence to no longer be considered as, hypothetical.

Based solely on the idea of man being at the centre of the universe, the once commonly held theory about the Sun revolving around the Earth has been shown to be lacking evidence. The Earth being flat is another 'theory' in this category of imaginative speculation, or a myth. The idea that the Earth is round, a planet, a sphere is no longer postulated as even a mythical theory; (I hope.)

Too many people misconstrue "It's only a theory," as a way to dismiss well founded scientific research based on evidence.

These two uses of the word theory is very important to bare in mind.

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Just as an aside, this is not the steady-state theory. They still postulate an expanding universe, but going back in time doesn't result in a big-bang, but some other state. I'm not sure what they think was there before the universe started expanding -- all they've done is to postulate something other than the big bang (which essentially requires a change of physics to occur to start the big bang).

From what I've read, their theory also offers an alternative to dark matter / dark energy, which I view as a positive. I've never been impressed with the idea of dark energy. It reminds too much of "the ether" that was a concept to fit a theory.

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So in other words we just sit here as the universe slowly expands around us but no one knows why. Do I care, not really, not much I can do about it except breathe and hope the air doesn't go bad.

The human quest for knowledge is behind all these theories of this and that, we are inquisitive and like to expostulate answers where there are none. The craving to understand is admirable and so we send tiny spacecraft out into the galaxy in search of tiny answers to just a small corner of the puzzle. It's good to seek answers about the future since without a big bang we seem to have no past.

I got another kind of answer this morning while looking at the news. While science is unsure about some things in the past the people in this article seem to have it all figured out, but are giving us all the wrong answers. Look at the list and don't laugh too loud. Revisionist history is a scary part of the American South.


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Scary? Yes, but even more so, it is offensive to every thinking human being who has fought hard to overcome the myths and superstitions that have been, and are still being used to indoctrinate children into being little more than a village idiot.

I assure you Chris, I am not laughing at the list in the link you provide. I weep for the intelligence that is being sacrificed on the altar of ignorance.

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