Archive for Albert Einstein

Faith, Facts and Frustration

Posted in agnoticism, Atheist, belief, Bible, Christianity, culture, faith, freethought, history, random, religion, science, Social, thoughts with tags , , , , , , on April 11, 2011 by chouck017894

The “good book” tells us in the first chapter, verse 3, that light and darkness had already been established, and God had found the division to be good, and it was these which he called Day and Night.  Dry land did not appear by command until the second “day” (verse 9).  Consequently, the Earth came to be created before the luminaries of the Sun and the Moon, which occurred on day three (verse 16).  The assumption seemed to be that these later additions were something like polished balls put in place for Earth’s benefit.  But that had not been the general understanding which was taught in earlier cultures such as the Sumerians, Babylonians, Egyptians, etc.  But then those ancient Pagan civilizations had not been divinely blessed with revealed wisdom such as spewed out of 8th century BCE Jerusalem. 

Even when God’s son was sent into the Roman Empire a few centuries later, Jesus found no need to explain cosmic principles as means of teaching how his father ran things throughout Creation.  Not even Jesus’ disciples were clued-in, which might have advanced man’s potential considerably.  Of course it may be that mankind was supposed to discover these creative principles on his own by following a few veiled hints.  That, however, required concentration on things other than material gratification.  In addition, the unconventional interpretation of Judaic traditions advocated by Jesus set a course of  understanding that would schism into a hierarchical faith system in which the “saved ones” were groomed to dominate the world.  Any scientific principles were consequently smothered under a blanket of politically structured spiritualism.

Under the faith system that developed as the Roman Empire began to decline, the high political office of that faith system which developed was woefully short of any scientific curiosity.  There would, of course, be those who would step forth to shore up the reputation of the political head of the faith system so people would not  start to question the reverent one too closely.  There was, for example, good old political minded “saint” Augustine (353-430) who was of blessed certainty that scientific mistakes in the pope’s  pronouncements did not invalidate religious authority unless there had been divine support for the errors the pope made.  Such a stance made it halfheartedly tolerable that the pope apparently did not receive regular updates on heavenly actions. 

Augustine’s maneuvering tactics could, for centuries after that, be used to excuse any of the embarrassingly awkward incidents that have revolved around various pope’s scientific and political pronouncements.  This reverent scheming makes it possible for the faithful to continue to defer to the “authority” of the church in its supposed superior understanding of ecclesiastical matters.  Such faith merely requires the sacrificing of one’s skepticism upon the church altar and abandoning any thought that perhaps this wobbly claim of holy word infallibility might put one’s soul in peril.

This political sidestepping would continue to help excuse such booboos as the 1633 affair when the mathematician/astronomer Galileo was summoned before the Inquisition in Rome and forced to recant his writing that Earth moved around the Sun.  Because Galileo had pointed the new invention of the telescope toward the heavens, he had dared to look upon truth.  Contrary to biblical implications, the Moon was not a smooth orb, the Sun was not a polished disc but a flame-covered inferno, and the planet known as Venus displayed itself in periodic phases!  For reporting these wonders to the world, Galileo was promptly found guilty of heresy by the Catholic Church.  Galileo could not deny the truth that he had witnessed, and during his trial remarked something to the effect, “The Bible tells you how to go to heaven, not how the heavens go.”

Galileo’s trial set the standard by which western religions brushed off any scientific endeavors.  Fortunately there were men who continued to feel intuitively that perhaps God had chosen not to reveal too much wisdom to man all at once, and the reason might be that man was to make himself worthy by seeking further wisdom.  Through the centuries men such as Isaac Newton (1642-1727) struggled to reconcile their scientific findings with religious texts, but there always seemed to be irreconcilable differences despite shared feelings of humbleness and awe when pondering the majesty of what we see as Creation.

Even one of the great minds of the 20th century, Albert Einstein, could not break free of the primal concept that some being must have fashioned the universe like some work of art or mechanism.  After decades of searching for the secrets of gravity, time-space, and quantum mechanics, Einstein would say it was not easy to catch a peek at God’s playing cards.  Typically, he would let “the Lord” off easy, saying that although the laws of Creation are subtle, “the  Lord” (creative law) was not malicious.  To a contemporary physicist, Niels Bohr (Danish), Einstein continued to refer to God more than was necessary, and he told Einstein to stop telling God what to do.  But perhaps Einstein’s speaking of God may not have been so much a statement of personal belief as it was the use of common beliefs to comfortably acquaint the unscientific pubic with the operational processes of the universe.  Certainly, in that timeframe, if Einstein had failed to acknowledge a “maker,” the public would have vilified him as  enthusiastically as they had glorified him. 

Today, in the 21st century, some astrophysicist may, in some interview, give mention to God when some newscaster questions how the laws of physics came into being.  It’s a loaded question, for as yet there is still no sufficient data or theory to give a satisfactory answer.  That does not mean, however, that the Bible gives a superior accounting of the creative  forces at work, for if any disguised scientific solutions to cosmic principles were embedded in those holy texts some astrophysicist would be mining them with celebrated results.

It is the magnificence of the living universe that keeps mankind’s faith systems and mankind’s sciences in wonderment and reverence.  Whatever man may deduce from his perspective of Creation, the truth is that there can be no center of infinity.  Most certainly planet Earth is not at its center; and it is even more certain that no man-invented, self-serving faith system is at its center.

Advertisements

Big Bang = Science Fiction

Posted in Astronomy, Atheist, culture, environment, life, nature, random, science, thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , on September 22, 2009 by chouck017894

The biblical version of “beginning,” creation ex nihilo (Latin, “out of nothing”), has a strange counterpoint with the so-called Big Bang theory that has been clutched to the breasts of cosmologists and cosmogonists as virtually sacrosanct since around the 1920s.  That similarity of concept—a material universe out of nothing—has its link in Georges Lemaitre, a Belgian Roman Catholic priest, mathematician and astronomer who proposed a theory that came to be known, sarcastically at first, as the Big Bang.  Lemaitre’s idea of the origin of the universe was that it was from a “primeval atom” or “Cosmic Egg.”  The myths of numerous prehistory cultures had similar ideas of everything being brought forth from an “egg,” but Lemaitre explained the Cosmic Egg as “…exploding at the moment of the creation.”

Basically, the big bang and black holes and all the interlocking theories are closer to metaphysics or science fiction than documented science, but the media eats it up.   Totally ignored is the fact that the theory defies known physics principles and requires a belief in invisible and unproven “dark matter” and “dark energy” to shore up the theory.  Granted, there is much in the universe that mortal eyes cannot perceive, but space is not exactly a material object that can be warped as in Einstein’s geometric theory.  The universe, most likely, did not find it necessary to unfold through such a needlessly complicated indulgence as the bangers like to imagine.

Around the “science” of the bangers there hovers a shocking lack of explanation for the simplest phenomena associated with matter.  They remain totally mystified by such phenomena as mass, gravity, magnetism and light.  They can and do summon up complex mathematical descriptions to make a fit for any observable things, but mathematical exercises do not constitute an explanation of what we see as physical reality or how they were made manifest.  As with radical religionists, the mystery is their selling point, and it is their showmanship at telescopes and blackboards that brings the money into their coffers while those with more tangible answers have been effectively muzzled.

 There has long been a strange avoidance by the cosmology crowd against considering any other studies that could prove pertinent to their own field of interest.  They patently ignore, for example, high-energy experiments at Los Alamos National Laboratories and Sandia Laboratories in which have been observed results that show striking parallels with astronomical phenomena.  To the Big Bang advocates, those observable experiments show the heresy that suggests that the universe was initiated and shaped by electrical transference!  Worse for the bangers, there have been high-energy experiments that have reproduced the features of aurorae, sunspots, comets and similar mysteries that have constantly left cosmologists stymied.  But bangers loath the fact that the theory of a kind of cosmic circuitry better explains creative activity in the universe than does the esoteric theories of a big bang and galaxy-gobbling black holes.

Studying the behavior of electricity in gases may seem a long way from the sciences of astronomy-cosmology-cosmogony, but to watch the writhing life-like filaments in a container of plasma bears an uncanny likeness to the universal energies and their inclination for responsible life that we so yearn to understand.

  • Recommended reading: The Big Bang Never Happened: A Startling Refutation of the Dominant Theory of the Origin of the Universe by Eric J. Lerner.

Time and Nothingness

Posted in Atheism, Atheist, belief, Bible, Christianity, culture, logic, prehistory, random, religion with tags , , , , , , , , on July 25, 2009 by chouck017894

Many people in what we regard to be prehistory were knowledgeable of the atomic structure of the universe.  Symbols of atomic energy have been found the world over dating from what we regard as prehistory.  Also there are passages from the Vedas, for example, the most ancient sacred writings of Hinduism, that allude to beings with such understanding.  And in cultures such as the Celts, Gauls, Mayans, and others there were what we might term “initiates” who demonstrated their comprehension of atomic structure.

As late as the fifth century before our Common Era (CE), the Greek philosopher Leucippus spoke of the atom and the “corpuscular universe.”  So too did the fourth century BCE Greek philosopher Democritus, whose name is associated with the  first exposition of the atomic theory of matter according to which all matter is composed of single, indivisible atoms.  His theory was that the atoms, the space within which they move, and their motions within that space, are eternal.  This would mean that there is no point at which it can be said to have served as a “beginning.”

Both religion and science pursue the theory that if the fundamental “law” of the universe can be discerned, and the initial condition of the universe could be discovered, then all purpose for Creation would be known to man.  What is steadfastly ignored is the fact that neither time nor space function as a principle of  Creation: they are effects, and the fundamental “law” and initial condition they seek is to be found in the eternal now.  Because the potentiality for everything has always existed within the primal energies we think of as Source, and which religion insists upon personifying as “God,” it is only the  fundamental energy particle active as Source that could ever authoritatively announced “I Am.”

In other words, Creation’s energies could never have evolved ex nihilo, out of nothing. Energy can exist without manifesting as form, but energy cannot be generated out of a state of non-existence.  As Stephen Hawking has proposed, much to the dismay of cosmologists and religionists, there really could never have been a point “t=O” to mark a “beginning.” 

A “Big Bang” does not explain the beginning  of Creation: the only thing that theory can be said to demonstrate is that energy is creative.  Energy has to be active in some capacity if anything like a “big bang”  could be initiated; it simply could not explode unless there was activity present to fuel it.  Religionists, of course, will say that it was “god” who stirred up the whole mess.  But any pre-schooler has common sense enough to ask, “Then who created god?”

We are faced with the reality that is always up to each individual pattern of energy as to where it wants to begin to measure the timely circle experienced as Creation.  To define Creation in terms of a time when everything “began” is an attempt to impose limitation upon that which is without limits.  That has left science in the awkward position of never having been able to explain what it is that we experience as time.  Indeed, science and religion simply accept that time just emerged ex nihilo, out of nothing.  That idea got kicked in the head when Albert Einstein introduced to the world the theory of relativity.  The paradoxes of special relativity was that time can be measured at a different rate by two clocks in different situations.  A clock moving in outer space, as compared to a stationary one on Earth, will measure involvement with Creation  forces differently.  That little discovery changed forever man’s concept that time was something constant, unalterable, and observed identically everywhere in the universe.  The indistinct qualifications of what constitutes “time” therefore casts serious doubts on any timescale that religionists claim from “revealed wisdom,” and even clouds the timescale that cosmologists theorize in an attempt to deduce the exact “time” of the imagined “big bang.”

Maybe we should rethink our concept of time.  Age-old concepts of  “time” did not regard time as a linear measure as we have been conditioned to regard it, but thought of it as a broadly arked, ever-shifting energy flow in which we each reflect our relationship with quantum activity.