Saturday, April 26, 2014

The ultimate free lunch

By Mathew Goldstein

According to the theory of cosmic inflation, our universe started from almost nothing, borrowing the required positive energy from a growing, negative energy, gravitational field as a result of the large negative pressure of the tiny, initial, inflating substance.  In a fraction of a second (less than about 10^-35 seconds) our universe doubled in size about 260 times.  Then this period of "Big Bang" inflation ended.

One of the predictions of inflation is that the cosmic microwave background radiation will contain an imprint of gravitational waves.  This is because quantum fluctuations during inflation will generate gravitational waves. To celebrate the recent discovery of the predicted cosmic microwave background B-mode polarization (and to promote his new book), Max Tegmark has placed the inflation chapter of his new book,  Our Mathematical Universe: My Quest for the Ultimate Nature of Reality, on the internet.  This is the up to date version of the first part of the first chapter of the obsolete book commonly referred to as the bible, with inflation now assuming the role formerly attributed to God, and it is free, so take a look.  It explains why the Big Bang only makes sense if inflation is true, that inflation makes multiple predictions which have been demonstrated to be true, and the implications of inflation for cosmology (inflation is eternal, therefore we live in a multiverse).


  1. I am not an atheist but a practicing Hindu. But that doesn't necessarily go against the grain of what you have written in this article here but in fact it shows the multi-dimensionality of expressions given the single underlying continuum of Truth. The Truth is at once - the simplest and subtlest of entities while due to this precise simplicity it provides the widest range of expressions and points of view - which apparently leads to a scene of mutual conflict only because these expressions are cloaked within their own contexts - often far removed from each other - with their own jargon and dimensions. BUT when we realize that what the atheist speaks and when a spiritualist (Yogi) speaks - some of their expressions are synonymous in essence, these external differences cease.

  2. "The Spiritual Pundit defines god as "a placeholder for the ineffable" but the atheist rejects this as nonsense, saying he believes in science"

    "the Spiritual Pundit, figuring that as soon as an atheist defines what he does not believe in, his or her atheism is defeated by the simple expedient of redefining god to be something else"

    I'm sorry but I get this silly claptrap from theist all the time.
    "If you don't believe in God, tell me then what do you believe in."

    Really, why do I have to believe in an alternate to their fairy tale ramblings?

    I don't believe in the Easter bunny, Santa Claus, the tooth fairy, Peter Pan, or Tinker Bell, either.
    No one challenges me to offer an alternative.

    They just can't accept that someone can go for years without thinking about, much less contemplating their God.

    I don't believe in their God and don't need to offer an alternative.