Infinity vs. Eternity

Infinity and eternity are considered to be synonyms by many, but they have different meanings.  Infinity is defined as being without end or boundless like our space-time fabric, while eternity is defined as that which transcends time becoming timeless reality.

Let’s examine our universe.  I believe that space-time is boundless, stretching to its maximum expansion and then collapsing back to its minimum compression.  This constant expansion and contraction is boundless as both space and time are infinite.  Thus, our universe is a perpetual time machine, going from a Big Bang to a Big Crunch and then a Big Bang all over again.

But our universe is not eternal because time is a fundamental part of its matrix.  Eternity dispenses with time so there is no past, present, or future.  Eternal existence is without reference to calendars or clocks.  Eternity is a timeless world.

Einstein explained that there is no absolute simultaneity of events.  An event should appear to happen at the same time to different observers, but this is not the case.  An observer on a speeding train may observe an explosion before somebody who is standing along the rail.  Neither observer can claim to be correct as to when the bomb went off.  This is simply the strangeness of special relativity.

Thus, some philosophers have referenced special relativity as why time is not linear or even real.  If absolute simultaneity does not exist, how could we ever say that an event is in the present?  There is no absolute present in special relativity.

But our understanding of eternity may help scientists reconcile quantum mechanics and general relativity.  Some theories of quantum gravity indicate this world does not have time on its side.  In this strange world, time may not play a role.  In effect, quantum mechanics may intersect with quantum gravity completely outside of the space-time fabric.

In the quantum world, a particle can be in two places at the same time; so this may be a “matterless reality,” which would be, at a minimum, have a completely new set of rules for its physics.  And considering eternal possibilities, it might be God’s world.

So when I talk about infinite life in the universe, I am talking about the stardust that formed us and prior to that has formed billions of other forms of matter and will continue to form matter in the future as the space-time fabric expands and contracts forever.

However when I talk about eternal life, I am referring to God’s timeless and matterless world which exists without time and space.  So how do we even know it exists?  Well, we know the quantum world exists, but we do not know much about it.  We know that the laws of physics that we use do not apply in this world.

And there is an even more potent reason: there cannot be more infinities than one because one infinity would limit the other.  In effect, our closed infinite universe must be inside an eternal world because it cannot be within another infinite world.  In other words, whatever is outside our infinite universe is where creation occurred since one of the laws of physics is that matter and energy can neither be created nor destroyed in this universe.  Thus, creation of our time-space fabric universe occurred in the eternal world of God.

When we pray to live forever, we need to be careful what we pray for.  We may just get what we requested.  Living forever in the world of infinity is what we are doomed to do.  Our recycling universe takes us through time, probably forwards and backwards forever.  I get dizzy just thinking about it.  That would not be my first choice.

However, reaching the eternal world of God will be a much more difficult journey.  My guess is that it will be completely foreign to us and we will have to let God manage that trip for us if we are to have any chance at all.



Space-Time Fabric

Let’s assume that the space-time fabric is situated within our entire closed universe and matter is scattered throughout like small insects trapped on a giant spider web.  And let’s also assume that the space-time fabric along with the matter is in constant motion, either accelerating because of gravity since they are the same thing (Einstein’s principle of equivalence), or decelerating because of entropy, or shrinking because of dark energy, which quite possibly may be found in the quantum world.

So, finally let’s assume that dark energy is scattered about everywhere in the universe, fighting to overcome the original expansion from the Big Bang and matter and dark matter’s gravitational attraction in an effort to pull everything in back on itself to finally collapse into a Big Crunch.  And mathematics tells us that dark energy has about three times as much force as dark matter and all visible matter, so shrinking may well be the strongest force in the universe.

From our perspective, the matter probably would appear to be expanding at increasing speeds.  Yet, if the fabric were alternating back and forth between expanding and contracting, we might not be able to recognize the difference between expansion and contraction from our perspective.  It might look exactly the same to us on the planet earth.

The matter in the universe would warp the space-time fabric and perhaps, vice-versa, but we would not detect these variations from our perspective.  So, what can we surmise from our perspective?

Let’s again assume that the Big Bang was the start of expansion of the space-time fabric when all matter was very close together and should have slowed down time.  As the space-time fabric expanded, it would have also expanded the distance between mass in the universe, thus causing time to speed up.  Let’s assume that we would not detect this time difference, just as we would not detect it in a spaceship traveling toward Mars.

So depending on our position and speed, time can appear to move faster or slower to us relative to others in a different part of space-time.  The phenomenon is called “gravitational time dilation.”  In a nutshell, it just means time moves slower as gravity increases.

A time reversal may simply be caused when the expansion away from masses becomes a contraction back to an increase in gravity from the narrowing of the distance between the matter in the universe.  Time would initially move faster as everything expanded, but would move slower as everything contracted.

Again, we could not detect this time reversal or the increase or decrease in time.  However, we could see the effect of time going backwards by examining ancient galaxies, whose light passed by us billions of years ago.  When we can actually see those galaxies which existed billions of years ago, it is only because we are in a time reversal headed back toward the Big Bang, which will be more aptly named the “Big Crunch” for our future.  Otherwise, we could not see the sight of these old galaxies, which would have zipped by at the speed of light never to be seen again.  Just count your lucky stars that you cannot see the Big Bang… yet.

Time Reversal

We know very little about deep oceans and the center of our planet.  Clearly, we know even less about our solar system and even far less about our galaxy.  Guess how insignificantly little we know about our universe.  So, how will we ever know what is going on within our universe?  It seems that only our imagination saddled with logic has a chance to succeed in solving this mystery.

For a starter, it is possible that everything in our universe is interconnected.  Einstein’s space-time fabric encases the stars, planets, and other mass, including black matter.  This fabric connects solar systems and galaxies to form our universe.

But the next step requires a giant leap of our imagination.  What could make this space-time universe perpetual?  After the Big Bang, wouldn’t entropy cause the expansion to slow down?  Yet, we know that galaxies are moving away from each other at increasing speeds.  If we do not use our imagination, we can only visualize our universe expanding forever until solar systems end up in a Deep Freeze off somewhere by themselves.  But this would describe an open universe that expands forever with no boundaries, which does not seem likely.

What does appear to be more probable than not is that the galaxies are shrinking away from each other at an increasing rate.  Deflation could also cause a “red-shift” effect as the galaxies were shrinking away from each other.  But how did our space-time fabric go from expanding to contracting?  Well, if there were a significant force, perhaps dark energy, that could cause the space-time fabric to reverse direction, then our universe would be a perpetual motion machine, moving back and forth in time.  Remember, I said this required a giant leap of our imagination.  The space-time fabric would be similar to a balloon that inflated and then deflated.

It all depends on your perspective.  From where we sit, time reversal sounds impossible.  But from outside our closed universe, this movement would appear to be a simple expansion and contraction of the universe just like lungs that first fill up with oxygen and then deflate as the oxygen exits the lungs.  Einstein introduced time as the fourth dimension.  So, the dimension of time could easily move up and down as it expands and contracts.  But like I said, from our perspective, it would appear to be going forward in time and then reverse going back to the past.

Even though this sounds a little bit extraordinary, it may be the best theory we can come up without more evidence.  Here’s the bottom line:  there is no other explanation for being able to see an ancient galaxy, no longer sending out light, that was formed about 670 million years after the Big Bang.  The light from the ancient galaxy would have traveled at the speed of light and thus would have passed us by billions of years ago, never to be seen again.  The light from this ancient galaxy which died billions of years ago would have zipped past our field of vision, since expansion, as a general rule, would have propelled us at less than the speed of light.  In other words, how could we possibly see this light through the Hubble telescope unless we had reversed time and were headed back toward that original light?  When we finally see the Big Bang, it may not be a good thing for us.

Of course this sounds like science fiction, but when you consider time as being part of a fabric, it is logical to conclude that the fabric can expand and contract.  Time reversal may be nothing more than moving from expansion to contraction.  And dark energy, which currently is only a mathematical creation, could be a likely candidate to cause this reversal.

Again this is only speculation, but it is possible that dark energy is intertwined in the space-time fabric, so that it can twist one direction until entropy takes over and then it turns around like a rubber band to unwind in the other direction.  And dark energy could be powerful enough to keep this fabric twisting back and forth forever, first expanding and then contracting.  Even though there is little evidence to support this hypothesis, it is logically creative.

You might wonder why we don’t also reverse our aging or go backwards in time from the 21st century to the 20th century.  The answer is because the time reversal occurred billions of years ago.  We probably have been deflating the space-time fabric in a past-future direction for eons.  Basically, you would detect no difference between aging in the present-future or the past-future.

So, why would we ever be able to see the light from ancient galaxies as we moved back in time?  I don’t have a perfect answer, but I believe that we may be able to see light from ancient galaxies and even the Big Bang itself since that light is encased in the time-fabric.  In other words, as the space-time fabric collapses, our universe will be miniaturized so that we will be able to see the light from current galaxies, ancient galaxies, and even the Big Bang, which then may become the Big Crunch.

This theory of expansion and contraction of the time-space fabric would also comport with this being a closed universe, which is most likely the case.  It is not probable that our universe with its mass interconnected by a space-time fabric has no boundary.  Interestingly enough, quantum theory may assist us at this point.  Even though atoms may not appear to have well defined borders, there is an end point where other atoms come together as building blocks for matter.  As strange as the quantum world is, there still probably are boundaries.  And it may well be that the boundaries between the quantum world and the relativity world explain why we cannot reconcile these two worlds.

Even in living things, cells also have membranes at their outer perimeter that contain everything within.  Separations within our universe and between universes, if others exist, may be quite normal.

Our universe is very likely closed, so why would we limit our imagination to our universe just expanding from a Big Bang?  Contraction also must be considered, which may lead to a perpetual Big Bang-Big Crunch theory.  In effect, we could bang and crunch forever.

End of Days

Many people consider death as the “end of days” for them.  If this were true, then they would be the luckiest living creatures in the universe.  They should welcome death if it is, in fact, the end to everything.  Why?  Because eternity is not quite what you might expect it to be.  How would you like to live forever trapped in a burning oven?  Would you want to be in infinite pain?  Would you enjoy being with yourself for all eternity?

Unfortunately, it is extremely unlikely that death will be the “end of days” for anybody or anything in the universe.  Why?  Because all matter and energy in the universe remains a constant amount and thus is in a perpetual recycling system.  Matter and energy can neither be created nor destroyed in our universe.

If scientists are correct about there being a Big Bang, then there was a beginning for our universe that was created outside our universe.  In effect, the universe has a boundary.  It may be a phase change or it may be moving from one universe to another (God, the Creator, by definition, does this), but it is a birth of a system that cannot be destroyed within our universe.  In other words, we and all the other matter and energy in our universe are locked into this system forever.  There is no end of days for us.

So, what the hell is going on within our universe?  Will matter and energy forever expand into space?  Many scientists believe that our universe will eventually expand into a Deep Freeze with no boundaries for our universe.  This is primarily based on the “red shift” which indicates that most of our galaxies are moving away from each other at increasing speeds.

Of course, the red shift could also be an indicator that the galaxies are shrinking away from each other at an expanding rate.  If the matter in the galaxies were being converted to energy, perhaps even dark energy, this could enhance the contraction of matter as the energy became more prevalent.  We could not detect the difference between galaxies expanding away from each other and galaxies shrinking away from each other.

If the entire universe is connected in a space-time continuum with mass warping the fabric with gravity, I wonder if energy (E = mc squared) has the opposite and greater effect on the fabric.  In effect, it might warp the fabric in the other direction, pushing us back in time and in size.  It could be a return to the Big Bang, when the universe was packed tightly in a small cell.  This may sound quite preposterous, but it could explain how the universe never ends since it transfers from high energy to high mass and then turns back again in a perpetual recycling mechanism.

I can only speculate that dark energy is inside all mass in the quantum world.  It would be everywhere in the universe, either as the inner world of mass or as energy itself.  So, you may ask:  “Why aren’t the planets in our solar system getting farther apart from each other?”  The answer may be that gravity prevails in solar systems with matter controlling the quantum effect.  However, in space with less matter, the dark energy may control and thus consume the mass of galaxies, causing shrinkage.  Of course, the increase in dark energy would cause an acceleration of this consumption.  It might be called the Big Bang – Big Crunch cycle.

If the only force working on mass is repulsion, no matter what the cause (dark energy or otherwise), it cannot coexist with gravity controlling outside the galaxies.  In other words, if dark energy were causing expansion of mass outside the Milky Way, the Andromeda galaxy would not be able to overcome the dark energy within space and be headed our way.  But if dark energy were causing a uniform shrinkage in size in both the Milky Way and Andromeda, we wouldn’t be able to detect the contraction.  And gravity could still be drawing the two galaxies together.

The quantum world, perhaps also known as dark energy, in both our solar system and galaxy appears to be static with a clear separation from matter.  Logically, matter should slip right through the quantum world and be consumed, but something holds it back.  Instinctively, you might argue that the quantum world must be pushing against the pull of gravity to hold it back.  However, I believe there is a different barrier than just a balance between the two forces.

It seems to me that dark energy is in the business of converting mass to energy, just like the sun, thus causing contraction of mass and not expansion.  Dark energy may not be powerful enough to consume matter in our solar system or galaxy, where gravity rules.  But in space, dark energy may be a more powerful force and may be able to convert matter into additional dark energy.  As the dark energy increases in space, the galaxies might shrink at a faster pace.

Of course, this is only a theory based primarily on logic and thinking outside the universal box.

Limitation of Imagination

We all have congratulated others on being very creative.  We know of artists, musicians, or even scientists like Einstein, who were creative geniuses.  Their imagination seemed to know no bounds, yet it did.  Their limitations were primarily based on their knowledge.  The more we know, the greater our imaginations become.

Unfortunately, we know very little about ourselves and where we live: our solar system, our galaxy, and certainly our universe.  We are still struggling to understand the earth and the depths of the ocean.  We don’t know how the sun and its cycles are impacting our weather patterns, so we blame it on global warming.

We don’t know where our solar system ends.  We see only about 10% of our universe in the form of planets and moons, so we know very little about the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud.  And we also know very little about the billions of galaxies with their billions of stars, yet this is only about 4% of our total universe.  The other 96% is called dark matter and dark energy, which we know practically nothing about.  And don’t even mention quantum mechanics.

So with so little information, our imaginations are extremely limited.  When cosmologists state that they believe our universe will continue accelerating into a Deep Freeze, I counter with the fact that their imaginations are in a deep freeze.  The truth is that we will never know how the universe works because we are limited on our facts and imagination.  Only God knows and He is not showing His creative hand… at least while we are alive.

I give cosmologists a good deal of credit for coming up with the idea about Phase Changes as a possibility for the end of our universe; however, this idea is a spinoff of what we know about the different phases of water:  liquid, solid, and gas.  Again, our imagination is fairly limited to what we know.

For example, scientists have no idea what dark energy is, so let’s utilize our imagination and see what we predict.  Dark energy may be a force that is repelling the rest of the universe and thus causing an acceleration of separation between galaxies.  But this is based on our understanding of magnetism when like charges repel each other.  If you were to question cosmologists about dark energy, they would have to tell you that they have no idea what it is and their imaginations are stymied.

Even when we let our imagination go to areas that are declared to be science fiction, it is still based on what we know.  For example, if I were to say that the red color that we expect to see as a property enters the event horizon of a black hole, could be the same as the red shift that Hubble discovered decades ago.  Then if I were to extrapolate the reversal of time at the event horizon with a reversal of time with Hubble’s red shift, my imagination is still restricted to facts that we know or think that we know.

This is an interesting analogy though since most cosmologists believe that the red shift indicates that the galaxies are moving away from each other at increasing speeds.  My theory is that the galaxies are stuck in a time-space fabric that is shrinking at accelerating speeds.  But again, my imagination is limited just as much as others on earth.

Can we create something different from what we know?  Well, we can imagine new combinations of what we know.  For example, we might speculate that life on a planet, which is light years away, has a creature with ten legs and five eyes, but we are still working with legs and eyes.  We can even paint an unrecognizable animal, but we will borrow from things that we know to create this beast.

So, clearly we are not even close to the Creator, our God.  In order to be with God, we must unify with Him.  We must trust Him and defer to His omniscience.  Only God could create the universe from nothing.  Scientists do not have a clue.

Fabric of Spacetime

Would we understand our universe better by thinking of it as a web of spacetime that either: (1) bends around itself or (2) expands first into a macroworld and then contracts into a microworld until it is ready to expand again?

Einstein in his theory of relativity discussed space and time or “spacetime” as if it were a single interwoven continuum.  By combining space and time into a single entity and additionally marrying a three-dimensional universe (length, width, height) with a fourth dimension (time), we create Minkowski space.  And even though Einstein was disappointed that he never could unify the supergalactic universe of gravity with the subatomic world of quantum mechanics, this fabric might well extend from the macroworld into the microworld.  The Big Bang probably is the best example of this nexus.  But we probably leave the four dimensions behind when we journey into the subatomic world.  The quantum world could be ruled by dark energy.  We just don’t know.

Many cosmologists propose that the universe is expanding so that billions of years from now, earth will push into a dark corner of the universe with no sun or other stars in the sky, since our corner of the universe will settle into a “Deep Freeze.”  Of course, this makes no sense if you believe we exist in a closed universe.  A closed universe would probably have edges that were elliptical like orbits within galaxies or the orbits within atoms.  A closed universe also portends an infinite spacetime that could bend around an orbit or could expand and contract forever.

So, the first significant question is:  Is our universe closed or open?  Well, if you believe in the Big Bang, and there certainly is sufficient evidence to prove that event, you must argue that the universe is closed.  Why?  Because an event like the Big Bang had an event horizon, similar to the one predicted at the fringe of a black hole.  In other words, there is another side of the black hole and the Big Bang that we can never see.  Spacetime may stop at this point.  This separation creates an edge or event horizon that could not logically exist in an open universe.

If the universe were closed, then the next significant question is: Is perpetuity served by a curved spacetime or by constant expansions and contractions?  Or is it a little of both?

We know that the strength of a gravitational field can slow the passage of time for an object seen by an observer from a distance.  We also know that time speeds up for space travelers and even for those who reach the top of the Empire State Building.  Those of us, who remain on the ground, age slower.  If we were able to travel to a black hole, as we approached the event horizon, we would probably circle the dark matter close to the speed of light; however, observers on earth would think we were barely moving as time slowed down.

In effect, spacetime would be compressed near the event horizon.  And spacetime might even stop at the entrance of a black hole.  Logically, this may be the portal to a microworld where gravity goes wild and turns the reins over to quantum mechanics.  An example on a smaller scale could be when a star expands into a red giant, then contracts into a white dwarf, shrinking into a black hole, and finally explodes into elements that will eventually come back together again through gravity.  The Fusion-Fission cycle sounds like a miniature Big Crunch and Big Bang, doesn’t it?

And how does the curvature of spacetime come into play?  Well, we know that light bends around large objects like black holes.  We also know that objects bend the spacetime fabric.  We don’t know if the bending of spacetime is such that it encloses itself.  For example if we examined the earth from our perspective on earth, we might think it were flat.  But if we were in space, we would see the curvature of the earth.  That same principle may apply to our perspective of the universe.  We might view the universe as flat from where we are, but if we could see a larger segment of the universe, we might see it as being circular.

The temporal and spatial aspects of spacetime may be part of a unified fabric, but they may also operate on different principles.  In other words, space may move back and forth like an accordion, while time may travel both forward to the future and then back to the past.  The spatial movement is more in line with what we can understand using something like a coordinate grid to define where objects are in relation with each other.  The temporal movement is a more abstract manifold defining when events occur.  It would be difficult for us to imagine that time could move backward into the past.  However, there may be proof that it is doing just that.

We are able to see the light from ancient galaxies, dating back to the earliest galaxies in our universe.  How is that possible?  The light from that galaxy would have zipped in front of us billions of years ago.  Since the galaxy hasn’t existed for billions of years, it hasn’t emitting light for eons.  So, how can we view the light today?

Well, you might argue that spacetime is not regulated by the speed limit of light.  And that probably is true, but remember that there are two parts of spacetime.  Space may expand faster than the speed of light, but this probably occurred for only a short period of time after the Big Bang.  Time, on the other hand, may slow down and then reverse itself.  We are very familiar with spatial reversals of the north and south poles and other reversals that are part of the nature of our universe.  But it is difficult to imagine a temporal conversion that starts heading into the future and then backs into the past.  Quite frankly, it is a concept reserved for science fiction.  However, what else can explain the sighting of ancient galaxies?

Furthermore, we know that the older galaxies have a red shift that evidences an increasing acceleration.  Why would they be moving at increased speeds since gravity would have less of an impact on their movement due to entropy?  Well, it might be because of the additional aspect of time moving backwards.

An increased red shift of ancient galaxies viewed from our perspective may be caused by:  (1) a shrinking of the galaxies in a spatial movement away from each other or (2) a reversal of time creating the synergistic appearance of spatial and temporal movement in multiplying effects.  In other words, if you were to measure the distance from A to B and then include time constriction in that equation or consider the repetition of that movement from A to B by first going forward and then backward in time, your red shift might increase.

It is interesting to note that a red shift could be detected if two galaxies were shrinking just the same as if they were expanding away from each other.  The spacetime fabric may have billions of galaxies embedded in this fabric, so that an expansion of the fabric could also expand the galaxies.  The galaxies would be glued to the fabric and thus would not be flying away from each other.  It seems more likely that the galaxies that currently exist are either being drawn to each other by gravity, like the Milky Way and Andromeda, or they are slowly moving away from each other with only a minor red shift.

So what would explain the significant red shift among galaxies that are further away, who either are no longer in existence or would have very little gravitational tug on the other galaxies?  It might be caused by a mixture of temporal and spatial movements.   Since a contraction of the fabric may have the same effect on the galaxies, the galaxies might be shrinking in a proportional manner so that it would not be detected from our perspective.  As the galaxies got smaller, they would pull away from each other which would increase the red shift.

It appears to be more likely that a red shift would be evidence of a contraction rather than an expansion, since a proportional expansion, in theory, would be like slowly filling a polka-dotted balloon.  Those dots, signifying galaxies, would not separate very much as the balloon gradually expanded.  However, the dots would quickly reduce in size as the air came rushing out of the balloon with a time reversal.  When you add in the potential for time reversal, then the case for a shrinking universe in both space and time becomes more attractive and may explain the substantial increase in the red shift as we view ancient galaxies.

If we can look back and see ancient galaxies, why can’t we see the Big Bang.  Well, it is likely that we will never see anything except the results of the Big Bang.  In other words, we should be able to see the smoke from the gun, but not the gun itself.  And we may have stumbled upon this smoke.

There is an anomaly within the universe which is about 1.8 billion light years across and is located around three billion light years away from our solar system.  Currently, this is the largest structure we have found in the universe.  Little energy emanates from this circular area, which contains about 10,000 fewer galaxies than in other areas of the universe.  In effect, this anomaly has about 20 percent less matter inside it.

This cold spot within our universe has perplexed scientists since 2004, when it was discovered as an oddity in the otherwise homogeneous cosmic microwave background radiation.  This cosmic microwave background which can be traced back to the Big Bang is spread evenly throughout our universe except this area, which is about 2.7 degrees K cooler than the average temperature in the universe.  This anomaly could be the smoking gun for the Big Bang.

One other point that should be mentioned is:  There is a proportion of 3:8:24 that seems to consistently act as a foundation of our universe.  Mathematically we know that about 3% of our universe is visible matter, 24% is dark matter, and 72% is dark energy.  This division of matter and energy in the universe is a ratio of 3:8:24.  This same proportion applies to hydrogen, helium, and all other elements.  This could be a coincidence, but it is not likely.

But what about the missing 1%?  Our formula only accounts for 99% of the universe.  What accounts for the other 1%?  I can only guess, but it could be the ignition or the unknown force that keeps the universe constantly moving from expansion to contraction and back again.

And how does this apply to the closed universe?  Well, we know that neither matter nor energy is created or destroyed in this universe.  The proportionate division makes sense in a closed universe that is balanced for the most part, but needs that 1% to reverse the polarity so that our universe is a perpetual time and recycling machine.

Gravitational Waves

Scientists have made the first direct observations of gravitational waves, which are ripples in the fabric of space-time predicted by Albert Einstein.  It is similar to ripples caused by a rock thrown in a pond, but the difference is that these may go on forever through the space-time fabric.  The hero is LIGO, which is an acronym for Laser Inteferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory.  LIGO picked up gravitational waves created by two merging black holes, which occurred about 1.3 million years ago.  Yet, we can still hear them, rippling through the fabric.

Wow!  So, what does all this mean?  Well, it may herald a future in astronomy where we can finally learn more about the dark side of our universe.  LIGO may pick up gravitational waves caused by both dark matter and dark energy.  Perhaps we will detect waves from the Big Bang.  Only time will tell, but at a minimum astronomers will be able to study other black holes.

LIGO was designed to search for compact binary objects such as pairs of neutron stars or black holes, locked into the spiraling dance of death.  In 1993, Joseph Taylor and Russell Hulse won the Nobel Prize in physics after showing that binary neutron stars radiated gravitational energy.  This was the precursor or indirect proof of gravitational waves.

Patrick Brady, a professor at the University of Wisconsin who worked on LIGO explained the project:  “LIGO senses those last few minutes or seconds of the waves generated just before the objects crash into one another.”  He said that LIGO begins to hear the impending collision once the orbits tighten to about five times per second.  At that point, the gravitational waves reach a frequency of 10 hertz, or cycles per second, the low end of its range.  And in the few minutes left in their lives, the tightening spiral causes both the frequency and strength of the gravitational waves to increase.  Brady concluded, “That means they sweep right through the most sensitive band of the LIGO instruments.”

Scientists are in the early stages of developing supermassive LIGOs to find supermassive black holes in the center of galaxies.  Just like light giving off different frequencies, the gravitational waves also give us different frequencies.  Thus, we will need to develop supersensitive instruments that can detect unique chirps in a field of crickets.  Currently, there are only two detectors online (LIGO and Virgo, the European Gravitational Observatory’s primary instrument in Italy), but researchers will create more and improve them incrementally.  They will broaden the range of detectable waves and pinpoint sources of waves.  Italy’s Advanced Virgo instrument will come online in the fall of 2016.  Others will follow.

In December, the European Space Agency launched the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) Pathfinder into orbit 932,000 miles from Earth.  Even though, Pathfinder will not be searching for gravitational waves, it will prove that a hypersensitive, space-based wave detector is possible to launch into space.  Space will be able to filter out the static and noise detected with earth-based instruments.  Martin Hewisson, LISA Pathfinder scientists said, “We want to make this the quietest place in the solar system.  If LISA is successful, scientists can build a gravitational wave detector called eLISA, which will consist of three spacecraft in an equilateral triangle connected by laser arms.  This detector will pick up gravitational waves generated by binary supermassive black holes, ultra-compact binaries, and small black holes falling into supermassive black holes.

Different events produce gravitational waves of different frequencies. The above graph compares those sources against operating and future detectors.  This shows the potential for future astronomers being able to detect not only where black holes are located in our universe, but perhaps even locating the Big Bang.

But even before we have eLISA, new ground-based gravitational wave detectors should turn on within a few years.  These new instruments will allow astrophysicists to triangulate the positions of waves and hone in on their sources.  An upgraded version of Virgo will begin observations in the fall of 2016 in conjunction with LIGO.  Advanced Virgo’s improvements will increase its sensitivity ten times.  This will allow researchers to probe a volume of space thousands of times larger than before.  Virgo could pick up a gravitational wave signal once per month, or even per week, with its enhancements.  LIGO India is a proposed detector that would serve as the third in the LIGO family and could be operational by 2022.  In Japan, crews have blasted and excavated tunnels in the abandoned Kamioka mine to make way for the Kamioka Gravitational Wave Detector (KAGRA).  KAGRA is expected to detect signals from neutron star mergers every one or two months once it is fully operational.

The Einstein Telescope represents a third-generation detector that is in the design phase.  It would be hundreds of times more sensitive than the instruments we have now.  This telescope will be buried underground to reduce noise.  It will form a full triangle like eLISA and will have three detectors: two for low-frequency signals and one to detect high frequencies.

A new era in astronomy is set to begin based on a heightened sense of listening.  So, what is the gravity of this new discovery?  Well, certainly it gives us a new tool for detecting dark matter through sound, which otherwise cannot be detected with sight.  But more importantly, it gives us a basis for using our imagination to carry beyond the simplistic theory of the Big Bang and expansion until everything freezes in the icy depths of space.  Now, we know that Einstein got it exactly right and that the space-time fabric carries throughout the universe.  This fabric is so connected that gravitational waves created over a billion years ago still vibrate across the fabric.

What does all this mean?  Well, I’m not certain, but I think it means that everything in our universe, including time and the Big Bang are still in this fabric.  That may mean that past, present, and future are just nouns that help us imagine where we are in that fabric.  And whether this fabric encloses on itself so that time is continuous or whether this fabric is part of a perpetual time machine that expands and contracts, it really does not matter.  Because the primary point is that the universe is all interconnected in one fabric.  Solar systems are connected to galaxies and galaxies are connected together, so that our universe is one entity.  We don’t know if there are other universes which are also connected like cells in an organism, but we know that we are connected in our universe.

This helps explain a lot of mysteries in our universe.  Now, we know why the stars orbiting on the outside of the Milky Way galaxy are traveling at the same speed as the stars on the interior.  They are all connected in the space-time fabric.  Typically, you would expect the exterior stars in a galaxy to slow down as they get farther away from the center, which probably houses a supermassive black hole.  But if they are in the same fabric as those stars located closer to the center, the distance from the supermassive black hole will not change their speeds.

What else?  Well, this may explain why we can see the galaxy EGS8p7, located 13.2 billion light years away from earth.  This galaxy, the farthest we have seen as of today, was formed about 600 million years after the Big Bang.  So since this ancient galaxy no longer exists, how can we still see the light that traveled 13.2 billion years to reach us?  Traveling at the speed of light, which is faster than any speed our earth can obtain, the light from EGS8p7 would have zipped past us billions of years ago, never to be seen again.  However, if you analyze EGS8p7 as being forever locked into the space-time fabric, then we may someday even discover the Big Bang, also embedded in the same fabric.  And the mystery about why we can still see or hear evidence of ancient galaxies is solved by the space-time fabric, which embraces everything that ever happened or ever will happen in our universe.  However, it makes for a strong case that we currently are in a contraction phase since we can see ancient galaxies just as if we were moving back in time.

Now we can start examining our universe as if it were one entity so that if we detect contraction where we are, the entire fabric of the universe is contracting.  And our universe must be closed by virtue of the fact that a fabric has an end.  The only questions remaining are:  (1) is our universe enclosed in a huge orbit and (2) does it both expand and contract?

It seems highly likely that our universe is enclosed in some type of geometrical figure.  If a system is closed, it must have edges.  And if it has edges, these edges must form some type of design that connects.  The second question is the tougher one.  Scientists believe that the universe has been expanding since the Big Bang and many cosmologists think that it will end in a Deep Freeze.  This theory seems ridiculous to me.

Our universe is most likely designed to last forever in a perpetual motion mechanism.  The red shift discovered by Edwin Hubble supports the theory of expansion.  However, the red shift may also support the theory of contraction.  For example if dark energy were to cause expansion and dark matter were to cause contraction of our visible universe, the galaxies would appear to be pulling away from each other in either case. In other words, the dark energy would propel galaxies away from each other, while the dark matter would cause galaxies to contract, shrinking uniformly.  Both expansion in distance and shrinking in size will cause a red shift.

If there were an original expansion of the fabric, then there should also be a contraction if you believe that our universe is a perpetual time machine.  This makes sense to me because if the past and future are in the same fabric, then going backwards in time is not only possible, but is likely.  From our perspective, we may go back to the Big Bang, but we may call it the Big Crunch.

Acceleration of Distant Galaxies

Scientists have observed that objects three times more distant are accelerating three times faster than nearby galaxies.  And this proportional increase seems to continue the further out we examine galaxies.  In other words, galaxies six times further out would have speeds six times more than our acceleration.

So what is causing the increased acceleration?  Well, if you believe only in the inflation theory which ends in a Deep Freeze, then you might argue that the galaxies near us are slowing down to speeds less than those of the past.  This would mean that the universe would eventually come to an end with the stars dying out and our universe coming to a halt.

However, the constant multiplications with the distance would quickly run past the speed of light.  Perhaps a doubling would be under that speed limit, but a tripling would be suspect and four and five times our acceleration speed would most likely exceed 186,000 miles per second.   There should be a point of diminishing returns on this increased acceleration, so that the multiplication would start slowing down somewhere in deep space, but this has not been observed.  The increased speeds through straight-line multiplication do not make sense.

But the inflation theory also makes no sense in a universe that has orbits in both the macro and micro world.  This inflation theory of entropy, if decreasing in so many multiples from early accelerations, would have slowed us down to nothing.  The stars would have already exhausted their hydrogen supply.  We would be in the Deep Freeze.  And this is not the case.

So what else might be causing this anomaly of rapid acceleration, going back in time?  If the space-time fabric could both expand and then contract, there would be no limitation by the speed of light because this speed limit only applies to objects.  And if we are now in a contraction stage, then from our perspective, distant galaxies might appear to be multiplying the speeds when it is really a duplication of speeds.  In other words, as the near galaxies contracted backwards, they would only have normal acceleration.  But the distant galaxies that were also contracting back in time would have layers of acceleration from the new acceleration added on to the past accelerations.

Further, as we viewed more distant galaxies, the speeds of objects measured in the space-time fabric could also be layered with multiple accelerations which exceeded the speed of light.  So that the six times could actually be caused by a shrinking space-time fabric, carrying the galaxies back towards the Big Bang.  Of course, these are theories that must be challenged by hard facts, but right now that is all we have.

The acceleration may stop where the space-time fabric reversed itself.  The multiplication of accelerations would not continue into the point where the ancient galaxies were in a space-time fabric that was expanding.  It would probably only go back to the point when the space-time fabric was shrinking.  It will be interesting to examine the multiplications that we discover in the future.

Is Our Universe Alive?

If you examine the interconnected galaxies within our universe, it looks like everything fits together neatly within an oval shell, perhaps held together by dark matter and dark energy.  If we attribute any life to this entity, it will have to be living inside a closed universe with borders.  Because if we have an open universe, headed toward the Big Freeze when stars run out of hydrogen and the lights go out, then there can be no life.

When everything within our universe is running in cycles and orbits, it would be strange indeed if the universe itself did not also have a cycle.  We can only speculate on the edges of this closed universe, but it may be restricted by time itself with our universe expanding and contracting as if moving forward in time and then backwards in time, creating a perpetual time and motion machine.

So, assuming that we live in a closed universe, is it alive?  Our universe appears to be a large cell with filaments stretching out and connecting the billions and billions of galaxies into superclusters and then into a universal fabric.  And there is a life cycle for stars and galaxies as they are born, grow, and die.  The universe could have a similar cycle moving back and forth between the Big Bang (birth) and the Big Crunch (death).  Of course this cycle may never stop.  And the law of conservation of matter and energy seems to prove this.  Even though matter and energy may be transformed to something else, these changes will go on for infinity since the total matter and energy within our universe can neither be created nor destroyed.

So, does the universe fit within any of the seven life processes?

(1) Movement.  Our universe may be like an accordion, moving back and forth as it expands and then contracts.  Or it may be moving in an orbit that is so huge, we cannot see the curvature.  But it certainly is moving as reflected by Hubble’s discovery of the red shift.  And it is increasing in speed.

(2) Respiration.  The universe may not have lungs like humans, but it does have a great variety of chemical reactions to produce energy, which most scientists would admit goes a long way to proving respiration.

(3) Sensitivity.  The universe seems to adapt as it apparently detects changes in the environment.  As an example, there is a balancing force so that if matter, like hydrogen, is expended through fusion within the stars; there is counterbalancing activity as energy is converted back to hydrogen, probably though fission of other elements in a supernova.

(4) Growth.  The universe has expanded from a tiny particle to the billions and billions of galaxies that we see today.

(5) Reproductive.  The universe cannot reproduce through sexual activity, but it may be able to pass along genetic information like DNA to all its plants and animals.  The universal DNA may be the reproductive aspect for all life within the universe.

(6) Excretion.  Even though matter and energy cannot be destroyed within the confines of the universe, it can be transformed into something else that is not a waste product.  As an example, when we die, our bodies decompose and the elements and energy from that body become valuable as they are recycled.

(7) Nutrition.  The universe does not eat and drink like we do, but it does convert matter into energy, which is the purpose of nutrition.  Fusion is an example of the universe converting matter into energy.

After examining these seven life processes, it seems possible, if not probable, that the universe is indeed alive and well.  But don’t ask me if it is an animal or a plant.  Quite frankly, it may be unicellular like bacteria.  But I’m comfortable right now just saying that our universe is more likely alive than not. 

Edge of the Universe with God on the Other Side

I have written many articles on why our universe is most likely closed.  So, if it were closed, where is the boundary?  Well, the universe could have an oval orbit like many objects, large and small, but let’s be more adventurous.  Perhaps, we should think like Einstein and examine a four-dimensional universe.

When you add the fourth dimension, time, you need to be creative since the edge of our universe might be much more different than what you would expect in a three-dimensional object.  So, what if the boundary were flexible like a time bubble that could expand and contract?  What if the edge were not so much a three-dimensional location, but instead a moment in time?

Let’s speculate.  What if the Big Bang were nothing more than the entry point for all the mass and energy, including high-energy neutrinos?  Maybe after several million years, the Big Bang event, which probably was a fireball, started to cool down.  The lights went out.  Quite possibly, there were about 100 million years of no activity that was visible.

The Dark Ages of our universe more than likely saw a reversal from expansion to contraction.  The first stars and ancient galaxies probably were not formed until the hydrogen gases were compacted to the point that the heat was so intense that they ignited, much like stars are created today.

The majority of scientists believe that the universe is expanding at an increasing rate.  I suppose that this is possible if dark energy were drawing the visible matter out into infinity, but that sounds like an open universe with no boundaries.  If you believe our universe is closed, the only theory that makes any sense is that the universe is collapsing at an increasing speed as it races back toward its origin.

Why is our universe closed?  Everything that we know in our universe has design.  Even activities that appear to be chaotic have a reason and lead to a purpose.  God is the Designer.  As an example, electrons, planets, and galaxies move in closed orbits.  God’s world moves in cycles.  Since we cannot see the other side of the Big Bang, there must be a boundary that hides it.  The galaxies in the universe seem to be interconnected within an oval egg shell that expands and contracts over time.  The law of conservation of matter and energy states that matter and energy are neither created nor destroyed in our universe.  This matter and energy that remains the same total amount forever must be encased by a boundary for this theory to be true.

An open universe with only expansion that continues into a Deep Freeze with all matter reaching a final destination that has no purpose does not fit within God’s design.  An open universe theory supports a chaotic, purposeless system that is advocated by atheists.  Large stars would burn out, leaving only smaller stars to burn out, until all the hydrogen was used.  Scientists believe that the Deep Freeze will be the end of our universe.  But it serves no purpose.  It does not fit within God’s ultimate design for the universe.  God did not design a dying universe.

So, if time created the boundary for our universe, which can alternate between expansion and contraction, does that mean that time can go backwards?  It might from our perspective.  In other words, from our position on earth, a reversal might appear to be headed back in time to the ancient galaxies and the Big Bang event.  But if we were outside the time bubble, we might simply view our bubble getting very small as the compaction increased into the Big Crunch.

What in the universe could be driving this time machine, alternating between expansion and contraction?  Well, since our visible universe is only about 3% of the universe, dark matter and dark energy are the likely forces.  God probably designed a universe that could exist for an infinite amount of time.  This makes sense if you consider that time could be a closed fourth dimension perpetually expanding and shrinking or from our perspective, going forward and then backward in time.  Frankly, whether we are moving toward a Big Bang or Big Crunch may not matter since it could lead to the same result, so whether time is going forward or backward may not matter either.

God banished Adam and Eve from his kingdom probably into a universe without end like ours.  The only way to return to God might be to leave this universe.  There appear to be three heavens or judgments that must be passed in order to reach this goal.  2 Corinthians 12:2.  The first heaven, which has been described as being on earth, should be the easiest to obtain through belief and faith.  But the other two might be increasingly difficult.  The first death probably separates believers from nonbelievers based on God’s grace.  The second death is mentioned in the Bible when we are judged based on our works.  Revelation 20:13-14.  If we fail this test, we are cast into the lake of fire.  Revelation 20:15.

As Jesus said, “Because straight is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”  Matthew 7:14.  Revelation indicates that only 144,000 will be redeemed from earth.  Revelation 14:3.  The fate of Adam and Eve or humankind probably cannot be reversed without a superhuman effort that counters the Devil’s deceit in the second heaven.  Certainly, turning everything over to God should create the necessary unification with God to enter the third heaven, God’s kingdom.  But anything outside the Bible is just guesswork.  We will not know for certain until we die, but being prepared for anything is not a bad idea.

Even though this article is highly speculative, it is always interesting to ask the question:  why can Hubble see the ancient galaxies?  If the light from that ancient object, which no longer exists, started its race in a straight line toward Hubble about 13 billion years ago wouldn’t it have passed us?  If you believe we have been constantly expanding since the Big Bang at less than the speed of light, how could we see any ancient light?

I suppose you could argue that the universe is curved so that the light from ancient galaxies has raced around and is coming back for a second viewing.  But it seems more likely from our perspective that we are going back in time towards not only ancient light, but also the Big Bang itself.

Again, this is only a somewhat edgy theory, but it is possible that our universe is a time machine that can alternate between a Big Bang and a Big Crunch forever.  In that sense, we are in an infinite prison of our own sinful devise.  God and Jesus have shown us a way out, but how many will actually leave this universe?