Originally posted by dj2becker
I cannot see this as possibly happening eventhough the universe were 500 billion years old.
But the problem here is always the idea of a beginning
, or creation itself.
The inflationary theory of Big Bang has traced the origins of the universe down to a microfraction of a second from "time-zero", but it does not know what happened at exactly "time zero", nor does it know what came "before".
Monotheistic religion ascribes the event to a God who was without cause. It does not pretend to know how this "God without cause" could bring about cause and effect but not be subject to cause and effect himself. It simply has faith in the matter.
But a third possibility exists, being that our very idea about linear time -- past, present, future -- it itself the problem.
Infinite time thought of in a linear sense is an absurdity. "Beginning nowhere", "ending nowhere", etc. Ditto with space. (What's "outside" of the universe? and other wonders to break your head over). And if we postulate a God existing within linear time, we are left with the absurdity of what this God was doing prior to the creation of the universe. Was he on a very long coffee break? And why suddenly did his break end and he whimsically decides to "create the universe"?
No, these seem to be nonsensical considerations. It makes much more sense to deeply consider the idea that our very understanding
of progressive time is flawed. In other words, to consider that time is simply an illusion -- a conceptual construct only. Ditto for dimensional space.
That doesn't mean that "things aren't out there", and that our bodies don't age, etc. It simply means that we've in all likelihood drawn erroneous conclusions about what time/space are and projected those illusions accordingly onto our idea of the universe.
So it makes more sense to understand the nature of thought itself, and the subject-consciousness and how thought creates our view of the universe (and resultant confusions), rather than assuming that the problem lies in the object
our thought is considering.
Simplified -- the problem lies not in the "movie" we are watching on the screen, but in the "movie projecter" itself -- the mind.