General Question

osullivanbr's avatar

Where did the material for the Big Bang come from?

Asked by osullivanbr (3630points) October 2nd, 2008

For those of you that agree with the Big Bang Theory, what are your thoughts on where the materials to begin the process came from? How did these atoms, molecules, subatomic particles, pure energy, whatever it might have been, come into existence?

I know some of you are of the opinion that God created the world and there’s no more to it. For those of you with that creationist view, what are your thoughts on where God originated from? Who created him/her?
Can I please ask the collective to respect any viewpoints that people may put forward on this topic

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22 Answers

Harp's avatar

There’s no way of thinking about an origin or causation of the Big Bang.

It’s tempting to imagine the single point of “something” hanging out in the middle of “nothing” before the Big Bang, waiting for some cause to trigger it like a match to the fuse.

For the Big Bang to have a cause, or for it to have “come from” anything at all, would be impossible because there was no “before” the Big Bang, and any definition of causation would have to assume a “before”.

This robs us of the basic building blocks by which we think of “existence”. Take away time and space, both of which originated in the Big Bang, and any concept of causation falls apart.

So the unsatisfying answer to the question is that the question can’t be asked in the language of the Big Bang.

Magnus's avatar

The tenth dimension.

JackAdams's avatar

The simple answer to your questions, from me at least, is “I don’t know,” because if I had those answers, I would have to be Gawd, and I’m not.

If we are to assume that the Universe was created when two massive objects (larger than the human mind is probably capable of imagining, I bet) were hurtling towards each other in a vacuum (at an equally hard-to-fathom speed), then one would have to ask, of course, “Who made the objects, aimed them at each other and sent them on their way?”

Why couldn’t the so-called Big Bang have been nothing more than a single object, that exploded outward?

No one can answer those questions, either.

bodyhead's avatar

The best solution we have so far is that there was nothing and it exploded.

Believing that nothing exploded isn’t any more far fetched then the alternate religious theory:

In the beginning there was nothing… and God. Instead of nothing exploding by itself, God exploded nothing into everything that exists. Now you don’t just have to answer where everything in existence comes from, you also have to answer where God comes from. If I can explain an event with one unexplainable phenomena or two, of course I’ll explain it with one. To do anything else is illogical (to me. Of course from your point of view this might seem illogical).

Who created the creator? How did God come into existence? Before I can be converted, I need to know the answers to these questions.

fireside's avatar

Wouldn’t that be crazy if we were all living in some kind of SXLHC (Super Extra Large Hadron Collider) and were really just created as an experiment by scientists trying to find the source of their big bang?

JackAdams's avatar

What if it turns out that all of us, everywhere, are just a part of someone’s dream, and when that person awakens (and stops dreaming), we all die?

augustlan's avatar

My head hurts.

Lovelocke's avatar

In an attempt to provide an answer that isn’t an equally long stream of questions, here we go.

The big bang theory was likely set off why large concentrations of undisturbed gasses or cosmic sediment: That is, loose floating solid entities not too dissimilar from what we call comets today, or just “space rocks”. If I remember correctly, I believe the most common thing in our known galaxy and potentially universe is Hydrogen gas.

There’s also no accounting for previously-existing forms of “life” predating the big bang, let alone the types of cosmic materials that existed that could have been spent during the explosion and expansion phase of the Big Bang (When you burn Gasoline in your car, you don’t spit out more gasoline in the back). It’s entirely possible that the Hydrogen Gas was a byproduct of the initial fuel source that ignited the bang.

What caused ignition? No telling. The right gas at the right time? The cosmic chance that two space entities collided and the resulting friction set it off? That’s the darling thing about “Infinite Probability”, you see, if anything could happen, no matter how unlikely, the fact remains that it COULD have happened. In other words, if there was a “One in a 70 trillion chance”, then that ONE chance occured. We have no way to tell how old our universe is… save for the dating of materials we recover from space or the moon. It could be that we’re closer to the “outer” rim of the blast and therefore we would only see things many immeasurable millions of miles away from the origin of the blast.

One way to find out? If Scientists, say, were one day able to make it to a neighboring galaxy and discover materials that are drastically younger or older than those found in our galaxy then we’ll know “what direction to travel towards” if we either want to see younger systems or older systems.

When thinking on a scale as large as the Universe, you could also weigh in variables that are unforeseen. NASA scientists believe the main thing holding back manned space missions to Mars are the potential psychological effects that could occur when man loses visibility of Earth. If true, this could also explain why other planets haven’t made a shot at visiting our own planet.

If aliens do exist, then it’s not unreasonable to suspect that they’re wondering if we, The Earth, is “out there somewhere”. It’s also not unreasonable to suggest that, possibly, there was intelligent life on another planet “somewhere”, and their own foolishness mixed with hyper advanced technology would’ve simply destroyed the universe… and then, those “infinite probabilities” come back into effect. Earth could have been in a spot where it was saved, or maybe Earth was directly effected by the blast and that fire simply forged together the right materials to form the first life forms.

What we consider “naturally occuring life” exists everyday… that is, life that seemingly appears out of nowhere: Even on a microscopic scale.

Theotherkid's avatar

God has never been created. Space, mattar and time are finite. It all will be gone someday. (this answers the question if the universe has always existed, which it hasn’t.) It would take a force/energy made of neither mattar, space, or time ( God )to actually create space, mattar and time. (the universe.) So, since God is a force/energy, (not made of space, mattar or time.) He has never been created. He has always existed.(especially since he’s not made of time. )

JackAdams's avatar

He still had to have a beginning. Nothing can exist, even in spiritual form, without a beginning.

There had to be a “first day,” for the Creator.

Lovelocke's avatar

Heh… I like to think of “The First Day” in terms of “The First Day God got over his first breakup and Got Out and Did Something With His Life Like His Father Kept Telling Him To Do”.

…then again… not everyone’s got the same sense of humor I do.

Theotherkid's avatar

We wouldn’t be able to know this because, as you say, nothing can exist without a beginning. We can’t understand this because everything God has made had a beginning. We have always been used to finite things and have rarely if not never have recognized an infinite force. You believe everything had a beginning because everything in the universe is finite. Which is correct, but an infinite force (not made of space, time, or mattar.) could not have had a beginning. God had created time. If God hadn’t existed at one point, then our universe would’ve arleady been created. If this is so, than an infinite force still had created our universe. Therefore, God has always existed and created time.

Lovelocke's avatar

Also the idea of infinity works here too. “If it was God and then the universe, who made God? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him? And who made him?”

…basically, we can either “be cool” with the idea that our existence began at a certain point long ago, and not hassle over things like where that certain point is on the infinite timeline, or we can just… y’know. Terrorists win or whatever.

wundayatta's avatar

The Big Bang Cosmology Primer says there was nothing before the Big Bang: “The big bang theory states that at some time in the distant past there was nothing. A process known as vacuum fluctuation created what astrophysicists call a singularity. From that singularity, which was about the size of a dime, our Universe was born.”

Cosmologists have worked out a very extensive history of what happened in the big bang and what types of matter came into existence when. They go nanosecond by nanosecond, I believe. It took about a billionth of a second for the universe to be formed, according to this timeline.

Here’s an even better history of the initial second of the universe (an awful lot happens even before a part of a second has gone by, but then again, time is funny, perhaps meaningless, at a moment when things must be travelling faster than the speed of light in order to get to where they are).

bodyhead's avatar

I’m agreed with you Lovelocke, God has always been there just isn’t a good enough explanation for me.

A long time ago people would sacrifice humans and gut sheep in rituals to ensure a good harvest. They did not understand even basic physical science so they essentially became superstitious nuts by today’s standards. Those same superstitious nuts needed an explanation for the universe sooooooo God did it. It’s an easy quick explanation where I don’t have to hurt my head anymore trying to figure out what actually happened.

Did God form all atoms in existence from his strength of pure will? Did it happen all at once or part by part? The big bang explanation has a description of everything that happened and when which matter came in to existence. The God theory was literally explained to me in a claymation video in bible school where play-doh seemed to shoot out of his palms and he formed it into everything. I don’t buy it.

I stand by my explanation that ‘nothing exploded’ and made everything.

Lovelocke's avatar

…oh, don’t get me wrong. I like the idea of the Big Bang Theory, and even those who would fight you on “there is no God” would generally agree that Big Bang was a theory. Same as how evolution is a theory. In theory, children believe it’s the red cape that made Superman fly, but all it takes is a broken leg to prove otherwise.

And that’s what all of those “large theories” are lacking… Big Bang is “I think this happened”, and someone can say “I don’t think so”. But, unfortunately, I think that in order for humans to gain proof on either side requires a certain degree of mastery over “the universe”, and we’re far away from that phase, if we ever get there.

Elaboration. For us to discover steak, we had to gain a mastery over first, livestock and second, fire. Man put livestock to fire, and bam… a new era began. First, they had to figure out a way to get all of those little hot splinters of wood out of the meat (direct meat-to-fire contact). They held it out on a stick above the flame. That worked awesome! Then, Jesus came to the Earth and said “Behold! McCormicks Dry Spice Rubs! Let there be flavor, bitches!”

…and life was good.

That’s right. Jesus also knew what was up when it came to culinary delights. Jesus was like “Dudes, come on! Water? I’m the son of God for Christ’s Sakes… check out this noise!” and BAAAAAAAAAM. Wine.

The hot ass hebrew women are all upons for Jesus’ intoxicating fingertips. After awhile, they all got so hammered that nobody could “stay awake long enough” for Jesus to lay down his divine game… which was a shame, because Jesus wasn’t much of a Playboy. I hear he had the hots for this one cute girl named Mary. Mary wasn’t Beyonce or anything like that, she was just a girl, and he was just a guy. So he was like BOOM! And there was bread.

He said “This bread comes from my heart”, and so she ate it and it was buttery and soft with a slight biscuit-dough crunch on the outside. I defy you to find better bread. Of course, someone who wasn’t even there heard “from my heart” and started spreading rumors that Jesus was butchering his body to make wine and bread… totally bogus, just like John McCain’s interest in American people.

Even back then people were like “Pish, yeah right, this bread’s not a part of his body”. Other people were like “Well, it could be like, his leg or something… some butt meat maybe. We can’t really see under those robes, so y’know, there’s not telling.”

Jesus was pretty skinny.

Anyway, towards the end Jesus died and unleashed his wicked-bitchin’ Zombie Christ Earthquake Powers on the stupid Roman bullies (as depicted in The Passion of the Christ and Independence Day). Overnight, the Roman Empire degenerated into, presumably, a tiny burg in modern-day Italy.

And that, my friends, is how the Universe began. Prove me wrong. (Actually don’t, I had too much fun writing this).

bodyhead's avatar

Lovelocke, you crazy nut. That is by far the most offensively funny thing that I’ve seen today. Bravo. Fantisimo!

Two things though.

In science theory means something different then in casual conversation. This is only According to the United States National Academy of Sciences,

Some scientific explanations are so well established that no new evidence is likely to alter them. The explanation becomes a scientific theory. In everyday language a theory means a hunch or speculation. Not so in science. In science, the word theory refers to a comprehensive explanation of an important feature of nature that is supported by many facts gathered over time. Theories also allow scientists to make predictions about as yet unobserved phenomena, [1]

Also, the explanation that ‘God did it’ is just as valid as my explanation that a singing potato did it. Neither one of us can disprove the other. It’s very convenient.

So my new explanation goes like this:
A singing potato threw up everything that we know as existence. If you prove me wrong, I’ll cook you one of those steaks that LoveLocke mentioned.

Lovelocke's avatar

Dear God: Someone prove them wrong! Those are delicious steaks!

JackAdams's avatar

You had written, “In theory, children believe it’s the red cape that made Superman fly, but all it takes is a broken leg to prove otherwise.”

You reminded me of the time (as we are approaching Halloween) when I was given a Superman costume to wear for Trick-Or-Treating when I was around 7 or 8 years of age, and when I put it on and went outside, I was amazed at how many of my playmates would approach me and compliment me on it, then seriously ask me, “Can you fly with it?”

I’d just smile and say, “Yes, but not very well; I’m still learning, you know.” (My mother had told me to say that, if asked.)

steelmarket's avatar

According to the oscillating theory, every some-odd trillion years two adjacent dimensions touch, generating enough energy to create the space-time and matter that we call a universe. BTW, these two dimensions lie an extremely small distance apart. What drives them together? Because they are vibrating – as in sound.

z28proximo's avatar

I am along the kind of thought that God just exists. Time means nothing to Him, He always has been and always will. What I mean is that time and the sense of time is something that God does not exist in. This very second God is not only in existance, but He is also existing in a moment in time a thousand years ago. All at the same time. All of this was here and gone in an instant to Him. Cause time means nothing. I can’t make sense of it in a way that works for me, though, because I exist on a finite timeline and rely on the passing of time for things to make sense.

In this way, there wasn’t really ever a beginning or ending. Not for Him anyway.

ArumBouyed's avatar

How exactly does nothing suddenly explode? I think scientists, especially the atheistic ones, really shot themselves in the foot when they stated that the universe had to have a beginning and came up with the Big Bang THEORY.They should have just said that it’s always been in existence. Otherwise there had to be a creator. How did he originate? I think that’s why we call him God.

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