Until recently, most people believed that the universe was infinite and held the potential for life everywhere.
The laws of mechanics developed by Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1726) dominated the thinking of the majority of scientists and philosophers and with good reason.
Great strides were made in our understanding of the world and the processes that made up how our complex existence functioned.
But beyond Sir Isaac Newton, following close on his work and bringing it to its logical and philosophical conclusion, was one of the most influential thinkers of all time, Immanuel Kant (1724-1804).
He believed that the origin of the universe was unknowable and, in any event, unimportant. What mattered was that the universe was infinite. He believed that the universe always had life-favorable conditions, even though life on our world developed more recently.
Since the universe was, for him, infinitely old and also infinitely large, without boundaries or end, the possibility existed that life could result naturally by random chance.
This belief in a static, infinite universe is the foundation of Darwinian evolutionism and rational Atheism.
It is this view of the world that has, over the last two centuries, radically changed how people understand life and reality. It is easy to understand why that was the case.
Astrophysicist Hugh Ross sums it up this way:
The view of an infinite cosmos in which these changes were rooted received greater and greater theoretical and observational support. As stronger optics carried astronomers deeper into the heavens, all they could see was more of the same kinds of stars and nebulae (gas clouds) they had already seen up close. Thousands of stars and a few dozen nebulae became billions of stars and millions of nebulae. It seemed endless. Astronomers and laypeople alike were boggled by the immensity of it all.
But then an engineer, and part time physicist, named Albert Einstein (1879-1955), discovered relativity. The first accurate measurements of the velocity of light were made and a revolution began.
One key concept about the universe that came from the equations of general relativity shows that the universe is both expanding and slowing down at the same time.
Edwin Hubble (1889-1953), a well-known astronomer, measured forty different galaxies and proved in 1929 that the galaxies were indeed expanding away from each other. He was also able to determine the velocity of that expansion.
It wasn’t until 1992 that the final elements in the Big Bang theory were confirmed.
The closest analogy that we have to explain the phenomena of a universe that is both expanding and slowing down is an explosion, hence, the name the “Big Bang” theory.
In any event, the fact of expansion and deceleration, worked backwards, will eventually result in a beginning point.
It is not just movement but movement away from each other that is the key to understanding that in the past the universe had an ever decreasing size to the point of “singularity.”
However that singularity is understood, it is now an accepted scientific belief that there was a beginning point to the universe in terms of energy, matter, space and even to time itself.
There was nothing and then, there was something.
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Whispers of the Desert Warrior by Bert A. Amsing
Copyright © 2012 by vanKregten Publishers. All rights reserved.
Footnotes and references included in the original manuscript.