01 November 2016

Yet more ramblings on cosmology.

Another friend wrote some questions based on what I'd written about cosmology. So here are my answers.

1. Is it correct to hypothesize that we could use three dimensional Cartesian coordinates and investigate where the Big Bang occurred?

No. Spacetime (if it exists at all other than as a nonlocal system of energy levels, but let's leave that aside; it appearsto exist)... is not three dimensional. There is the special dimension of time, which is constrained (broken symmetry), giving us time's arrow. So set that one aside, as well. The spatial matrix is still not three dimensional. It is an open hyperbola (apparently; it could be finite, or infinite, it's almost impossible to tell), with a curvature in a dimension additional to the three dimensions of "ordinary space." Thus, just as the surface of a sphere is unbounded and uncentered but can be "mapped" onto a two dimensional matrix (like a sheet of paper) which has edges and a center, the apparent space we live in, of three dimensions, which would normally have edges and a center, actually has neither. It is either open and infinite, or recurved, so that, as in a sphere, translation in any direction will eventually return you to the same spot (except that it's trillions of light years, no exaggeration). There is no center. The Big Bang did not happen anywhere; it happened everywhere. It's just that at that time, the entirety of space was smaller than an atom. (Much smaller, actually, it was just about the Planck length, 1.6 x 10 ​^​-35 m or about 10​^​-20 times the size of a proton). Already, it is so large that from most of it (possibly 99.99... followed by a whole lot of 9's... % of it) is so far from here that light from there never has reached and never will reach here. And everywhere in the universe is the same in that respect, you can only see to the horizon determined by the speed of light... most everything that exists is beyond that, forever unseen. (Some cosmologists' theories give lower figures, such as that the observable universe is maybe 1% of the whole, but even that's pretty amazing).

If this sounds like God is in all places, you can think of it that way if you want.

Incidentally, the accelerating expansion of space itself is independent of this geometry. There is a force that acts like inverse gravity (repulsion), formerly referred to as the Cosmological Constant (except it's not constant, it's increasing), that is inherent to space itself and is directly related to the increasing entropy of the universe. This causes the expansion to accelerate, such that it will expand forever, and eventually become so attenuated, after all the black holes due to quantum effects, leak away all their mass as radiation, and all the protons decay into radiation, that it will be nothing but extremely low density, low energy radiation. In a quadrillion years, it will just be a boring region of the multiverse where nothing but stray​, ultra low-frequency​ photons exist. Thus dieth the world, not even a whimper. Nor even a glow. But that's a long time off, and in the meantime else"where" in the multiverses, there's every reason to believe that new universes are emerging all the "time."

2. The idea of a big Attractor leads me to wonder if the Big Bang and the Attractor are the two end points of a gigantic cosmic magnet.

I believe my answer above makes fairly clear that the answer to this is also no. The Great Attractor is not certainly understood, and there is a wild theory that it's an incursion from outside this universe, but more likely it's a concentration (fluctuation) of mass in the general direction of the central region of the Laniakea Supercluster, but possibly well beyond in the same direction (again, since lateral as opposed to radial velocities of galaxies are unmeasurable, it's almost impossible to tell). Thus, on the scale of the entire universe ("Big Bang Universe" I call it, to distinguish it from the Multiverse, the current term for "all that exists"), the Great ​A​ttractor​ is a local phenomenon. Most of the universe not only cannot see it, but not even in principle could they be affected by it in any way. Totally different order of magnitude from the Big B​ang​.

Hope this makes sense. ​Another friend, to whom I wrote these essays, accuses me of being incomprehensible.

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