An empty mind, the demon’s den.

       God is the origin of everything in this universe. It is then obvious why most of us don’t care to investigate the origin of God himself. But a curious mind must question everything, even if it means questioning the creation of the creator himself.

      Before we begin, I must put forth a cautionary disclaimer : Hereafter when I say god, I refer to the human concept of God and not the actual creator himself.

When did we first think about God?

Before farming came about, everyday was a struggle for the basic necessities. Animals were hunted, fruits and roots foraged and communities were on high alert for predators and other external threats. When the day was finally over, there wasn’t enough energy left over for philosophical thought. Our ancestors couldn’t spare time for pursuits that didn’t directly supplement  survival.

The rise of farming brought about a bit of stability to the human mind. But still, there was a lot of work to be done. Farming was a 24/7 job. One had to watch the field every waking hour to make sure it was guarded from pests. Having such a jam packed schedule left little time for existential questions.

Who created the world?

What is our purpose in life?

Is there a creator?

Of course, when natural calamities ravaged crops, our ancestors attributed these happenings to a supernatural power that needed to be appeased. But that concept of a divine entity stemmed out of fear and poor knowledge of weather. God had taken birth in the mind of man but he hadn’t yet become a necessity.

Many generations later, the world had progressed rapidly.  All of our ancestors were farmers. But we didn’t have to be. Only a small portion of the population stayed farmers. The rest proceeded on to more clerical, sedentary jobs that left a lot of free time. And then came the Industrial revolution. Machines reduced a lot of manual labor. Now, our mind was ridden of the fear of predators, worry of crops and the struggle for basic survival. Our mind was empty. And an empty mind is craves something to think about. And in those curious cravings, we created God, in our own image.

Whether the actual creator of the universe exists or not – is still up for debate. But the God that we created, is certainly a figment of our imagination, created by the devil’s workshop.

Time Travel Chapter 1 : Past Paradox

Since the advent of films and TV shows, all of humanity has long fantasised of travelling in time. The wish arises from the one dimensional picture of time we have in our minds. We imagine time flowing at a constant rate – that the interval between the two ticks of a clock remains same irrespective of the location or the motion of the clock. When one imagines time travel, we often picture ourselves getting into a time machine and setting a destination – this time not a city or a famous landmark- but a desired ‘point’ in time. The time machine energizes, lifts up into the air and vanishes. When you come to your senses up you find yourself in a different time. Depending on your setting, you have either arrived in the past or the future.

This concept stems from the fact that we think of time as we think of two locations in space. Just like in space, we can go from point A to point B, similarly, we can travel in from the present into the past or the future – employing any means that suit you. But that is not the case.

There is a basic concept of thermodynamics called ‘Irreversibility’. To do away with scientific jargon, it simply means that every natural process in the universe is irreversible. Logically stated, everything that happens in the universe cannot be reversed.

To demonstrate the proof of this principle, assume you dropped one of your mom’s favourite vase. She is going to be home in a matter of minutes. You think of every possible alternative to fix the problem, to make the vase as new as it was before you broke it. In simple words, you are only looking to reverse the unfortunate event of dropping the vase. One idea is to try to fix the pieces with glue. But then you think ‘ That won’t do it.’ Now that some pieces of the vase have turned into powder on impact, while some are simply thrown away in unreachable corners of the house, the vase can never look whole again. The other idea is to collect what remained of the vase, melt the ceramics and mould an identical vase. It would be identical in all respects but its outer finish. Come what may, you can never replicate the exact finish of the particular artisan that moulded the vase. Nor can you perfectly replicate the sceneries painted on it by an experienced artist. You can think of innumerable ideas even if you had infinite time, but the vase won’t be like it was before.

Simply put, you can never reverse the process. In scientific terms, if a natural process goes like this :
A => B => C

Then it is impossible to reverse the process It will never happen that something achieves its initial state starting from it’s final state following the same route it took to attain the final state from the initial state.
ie. the above natural process cannot be reversed in the following way :

C => B => A

Now, lets come back to our beloved time machine. Back to the beginning, we make ourselves comfortable in the time machine. We set the date to some day in 1992. Then you press the big red button that has GO boldly written on it. Again, the time machine energizes, rises above the ground and vanishes in a bright flash of light. Now your journey from 2015 to 1990 begins. Let’s assume that if and when you land in 1990, everything is exactly as it was when you were 25 years younger. If you consider yourself as a reference point ie. if you observe what you see through your own eyes – you will see the whole course of events from the present ( 2015) to the point in the past (1990) being reversed. You will see every event that has happened, happening backward – taking the same path but the opposite direction in time.

ie. for every event A to B to C, you will see the event taking place as C to B to A. But this itself is not possible. Because we have earlier established that no natural process can be completely reversed. The only logical conclusion is that we have erred in assuming that we do land in 1990. Fact is that, we cannot arrive in 1990. To generalise the conclusion, it is logically impossible to travel into the past.

I’m extremely sorry to have spoiled the hopes of time travel enthusiasts of shaking hands with history’s’ greats. But there is one more aspect of time travel left untouched : Travelling into the future. Which is an altogether different story.

Many Universes: The Multiverse Theory

What if the flow of time isn’t really that simple? What if it isn’t like a single river flowing continuously in one direction? Erwin Schroedinger, the famous physicist, said that his Nobel prize winning equations suggested the existence of several timelines. He also remarked that these timelines weren’t alternatives. They all happened simultaneously.

1000px-multiverse_-_level_ii-svg

 

Since then, the concept has developed into a key explanation of our existence. The Multiverse Theory suggests that the timeline we exist in is one of

Since then, the concept has developed into a key explanation of our existence. The Multiverse Theory suggests that the timeline we exist in is one of several timelines. All these timelines occupy the same space, happen simultaneously and never interact with each other in any way.

Each one of the timelines is unique and different from each other. The differences between two timelines might range from minute to huge. In one timeline, the earth might not exist at all. While in the other timeline, everything else would be same except your hair would be blue. These simultaneous timelines are a possible answer to a popular question.

What’s so special about us?

It is estimated that our universe might have a 100 billion galaxies. And every galaxy contains a billion stars. And despite those humongous odds, we seem to be alone in the universe. No intelligent civilisation has contacted us yet. And very year our telescopes peer farther into the universe, our civilisation seems more and more isolated in an unending ocean of stars. In light of this situation, one might ask – What makes us so special that we were chosen for life?

The Multiverse Theory is an attempt to answer this question. It states that we aren’t special. In fact, the universe exists in every possible form simultaneously (the timelines we talked about ). And some of these universes are habitable enough to support life. And in a portion of these habitable universes, there’s a planet or more that can support life.Earth is one of those planets. And we are one of those civilisations that won the pre-Universe lottery.

It’s not that we are special. We’re just one of the probable outcomes of a cause ( the one that created the universe). We owe our lives to probability. And though Einstein disagreed with this view saying ‘God does not play dice with the universe’, the question is still up for grabs. There isn’t a definite answer as of yet. And this can only mean that there’s a lot of scope for discovery, out there in the final frontier – Space.

 


 

 

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