Interesting conversation heard this past Friday on NPR while driving to Kansas city with an author on the subject matter. Granted there are several mathematical theories that suggest and point to the idea of instead a single universe, instead multiple universes. It is certainly an interesting subject matter to consider, given the different theories of how they exist and even how they would have come into being given the different theories. What I find most interesting though is the concept that given an infinite number of space (and perhaps one could argue the same for time) for things to occur within and the apparent finite building blocks of matter, at some point it is very likely that some other universe would approach very closely and perhaps even be an exact replica of this one in which we are currently living and breathing, even having this thought. In those close but not exact other universes instead of sitting here in a coffee shop writing this I could be out on a lake fishing and in other similar one I could be in armor getting ready to head down the lane for a jousting pass.
Kind of mind-boggling isn’t? I mean, all of those crappy, almost but not quiet science fiction works I read twenty years ago talking about parallel universe or even a parallel universe where one thing or another was completely opposite that at the time I started dismissing (they were really fantastically crap in regards to most of the writing) may have actually been more spot on that I would care to admit. Though if you think about it, parallel universe is incorrect, uni is one of them, and to have parallel means at least two. Keep going down the rabbit hole with me…
Take my wondering what I could be doing in a different but similar universe a step further and consider what you would be doing. One instance in another universe could actually be sitting somewhere and reading this blog entry on my site sometime Sunday or Monday morning. Another one though may find you doing one of your favorite activities instead of whatever it is that you are actually doing or suppose to be doing – of course if you are reading my blog that probably is one your favorite activities, right? And yet another ‘instance’ of you might be instead engaged in an actual work activity, mowing the lawn or something for instance. And just think about those folks that like modern conveniences but maybe like things like the medieval period without the plague, as it has been defeated by medical advancements – maybe there is a universe where that is the reality. And maybe there is another where the Zen of steam punk is the what society has settled upon as the best of the best and still fully embracing life fully.
The theories are very interesting and most of them come from a pure mathematical background, at least the suggestion or possibility of multiple universes. I should note, I am not familiar enough with the spelling to know if should be multi-verse or multiverse, but based on universe I assume the later – but it sure looks odd. That being said, I am going to have to find a book sometime in the near future and read up on the process a bit more. There is even a whole subset of the theories that explore how you would go about proving the concepts. Some proofs are themselves extremely interesting, like the idea that various universes have the matter and data that stores what they look like associated with them. Brings to question what happens to the information if the matter is say, tossed in a black hole? You could think about the same kind of concept if you think of your smart phone, laptop, or I-Pad similarly falling into such a hole or even breaking? Maybe you can longer retrieve the information that was there before, but does it just go away?
Sometimes I really think I should have veered more toward the hard sciences and theory then I did and it is conversations and thoughts like this one that really brings that home.
** – Image from reasons.org.