I was wondering about the different theories Atheists have about how our Universe came to be, what happened before the big bang? Or did that even happen? Obviously a theist generally believes God made everything happen, what are your thoughts?

Tags: Universe, bang, beliefs, big, god

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Never mind. I missed the Douglas Adams reference.
Hello Lacey
As Adriana says, do try reading the discussion on the other thread, namely

www.atheistnexus.org/group/originsuniverselifehumankindanddarwin/fo...

This includes a video film by Lawrence Kraus about a possible theoretical origin for the universe.

Here's why I see that the possibility of something supernatural being somewhere "out there" is so remote:

Conventional theoretical quantum physics can already take us a long way towards explanations that continue to be developed.

The consequence of using quantum physics to explain the postulated timeless quantum void that is a discussable alternative to the present universe, intimates that a universe is always present because of the implied instability of any pre-Big Bang void or 'empty' universe.

The short of it is that the present Universe could have come from an arguably “unstable quantum void” via a purely natural mechanism for the transition from 'empty Universe' to 'non-empty Universe'.
That is to say, physics tells us that the Universe could have been self-created, instantaneously and uncaused, from an unstable timeless void or false vacuum having the property that incipient, virtual energetic particles were omnipresent.

Hence the two possibilities: either one has an unstable void or one has its alter ego the Universe.

But this logic means that universes in real time are all there can be, because their absence would imply an unstable state of the void that cannot exist in time.

Thus, our Universe simply is . . . because at least one universe is necessarily always present. If not, there would be a void instead—but a void being truly unstable, a universe would instantly replace it. By this reasoning, a Universe–or universes—must be, and always were, and always will be.So theoretical cosmologists conclude that because time cannot exist prior to universes, universes cannot have any first cause.
Without a first cause, there is no origin, no creation.
Therefore postulations of the supernatural are superfluous—needless, worthless...

... and what I say next is something I have written very many times:

Atheism is the natural condition of the Universe into which we are all born and where we innocently live unless cerebrally raped by indoctrination into some ‘faith’ by intellectually-challenged persuaders who prey mostly on children. People’s gods exist only as fictions inside their heads. Religion is a sham.
I have some idea. The Big Bang theory seems to explain a lot and so, for now, it's a good enough working model for me.
Science has recently started to consider if the BB was the beginning of anything. Paul Steinhardt has a model in which our BB resulted from the collision of two "branes" in 11 dimensions or something. If this theory holds, it happens again and again, infinitely. It may actually be testable.

Even by the cosmological standard model-- inflationary big bang-- our universe is an unimaginably tiny portion of the "multiverse". I find that so mind blowing I feel like a piano just fell on me every time I say it.

And that totally doesn't answer the question, I know.
Maybe not, but it puts things into perspective, I have heard of this theory as well and for me it does seem to hold a lot of water.
Problem being that without testable evidence, we have to fall back on some sort of position where we can only
say in all humility that we dont know. Either that or we have to take the same indefensible position any theist does and appeal to 'faith' in that belief. That is, belief without any provable or testable evidence. At least
echoes of the BB can be detected in background microwave radiation regardless where in the sky we take a measurement from. Thats provable, testable and works for me. As for what was before this universe, I think that the question is meaningless in the context of this universe as its the result of the BB in the first place. I have given this answer to someone in the past who was confused where to begin thinking about all this head exploding stuff :

"Think of it like this : the universe is an expanding balloon, space is the expanding surface of the balloon.
We'r inside the balloon. If we travel through space, we are running along the INSIDE of the balloon. We arrive
back ( eventually) where we started, never reaching an end, a wall, a new universe etc. As the ballon is expanding, time is the measure from any point A to any other point B along the inside of the ballon."
OK, lemme actually answer the question:

I find the math of infinity really appealing. There are theories now that there might be an infinite number of universes, each with slightly different laws of physics. If the "universe count" is infinite or even just extremely large, then the existence of intelligent life is pretty much guaranteed, however unlikely. That for me would neatly settle the issue of our existence without a creator-- we MUST HAPPEN.

Problem is, most of those universes are inherently and forever foreign to us. Even if we can prove their existence, we can't imagine 11 dimensions, or universes with no time dimension, or more than one time dimension, or ... God by any other name? You could make that criticism, although I don't agree.
Lacey,

Thanks for posting this. I don't have much to contribute on this one, but some of the responses have been brilliant! Thanks also to all of you atheist egg heads who responded ;-)

The Chinese have a word that works as an answer to the posted questions..."Mu"
The Chinese have a word that works as an answer to the posted questions..."Mu"

It's Japanese. The Chinese equivalent is "Wu".
Thanks Jaume ;-)
Just found out this Wikipedia entry. Seems it's Korean as well as Japanese.
I tend to see time as having no beginning or end. I see the big bang as the strongest leading theory but an incomplete one.

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