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Something From Nothing - Dhamma Wheel

Something From Nothing

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.
dhamma_newb
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Something From Nothing

Postby dhamma_newb » Sun Jan 22, 2012 1:00 am

I'm taking a Philosophy course at university and I think it's interesting that quantum physics has shown that something can come from nothing.

My Professor stated: "Nature does not have to obey the way we think. In quantum physics it is well known that something can be created from nothing and quantum processes were surely involved at the beginning of the universe."

"But current multiverse theories postulate that our universe did not come from nothing. In a sense it was a bubble popping out of another universe. That does not solve the problem of what caused the multiverse."

My question: "Would it be possible that the multiverse came from nothing?"

His response: "As far as I know no astrophysicist has contemplated or stated any theory about where the multiverse (if it exists) came from. Hard enough to explain where our universe came from. But yes, in QM something can be created from nothing."

I am interested in hearing what people think about these statements and how they relate to Buddhist cosmology.

Also, what did the Buddha mean when he said "Conjecture about [the origin, etc., of] the world is an unconjecturable that is not to be conjectured about, that would bring madness & vexation to anyone who conjectured about it." -
The watched mind brings happiness.
Dhp 36

I am larger and better than I thought. I did not know I held so much goodness.
Walt Whitman

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retrofuturist
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Jan 22, 2012 1:54 am

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

Moggalana
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby Moggalana » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:13 am

Let it come. Let it be. Let it go.

dhamma_newb
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby dhamma_newb » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:35 am

Hey Moggalana,

Yeah my philosophy teacher recommended that book but I haven't checked it out yet. Now I will. Thanks!

Peace,
Don
The watched mind brings happiness.
Dhp 36

I am larger and better than I thought. I did not know I held so much goodness.
Walt Whitman

dhamma_newb
Posts: 307
Joined: Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:36 am

Re: Something From Nothing

Postby dhamma_newb » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:39 am

The watched mind brings happiness.
Dhp 36

I am larger and better than I thought. I did not know I held so much goodness.
Walt Whitman

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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Jan 22, 2012 10:47 am

Who was it who said:

“Science teaches you to know more and more about less and less until you know everything about nothing. Philosophy teaches you to know less and less about more and more until you know nothing about everything.”

:thinking:

The Buddha teaches us to know more and more about the truth of suffering, until we know the right path to reach the end of suffering.
• • • • (Upasampadā: 24th June, 1979)

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Sam Vara
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby Sam Vara » Sun Jan 22, 2012 10:50 am

Apparently, physicists and cosmologists don't always make the best philosophers. You might be interested in

http://maverickphilosopher.typepad.com/ ... sense.html

Bill Vallicella (the"Maverick Philosopher") also occasionally writes with insight about Buddhism, although he is I believe a Catholic.

chownah
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby chownah » Sun Jan 22, 2012 1:25 pm

I think there is a gap in the information here about the recently discovered something that came from nothing. Scientists have a a very complicated theory that explains the tiny bits of stuff that make up bigger bits of stuff that make up our world...they actually have more than one theory but the popular and presently most successful one at predicting what will happen when certain conditions exist at that very very small scale is called quantum science. The theory itself is a thicket of mathematical equations which have evolved over time and their evolution is driven by the need to accout for the results of experiments conducted at that very very small scale. Something that surprises non-scientists is that when you have such a complicated set of equations which explains things that you have seen you can take those equations and see consequences of their structure which allows you to predict things that should happen if the equations are indeed correct in modeling the behavior....so....scientists analyse various aspects of these equations looking for something they can predict and then they construct new experiments trying to find what their analysis of the equations has predicted. This is basically the driving force in particle physics today and will almost assuredly be for the forseeable future.

Anyway....some scientists looked at the equations and said that if they are to hold true then there need to be particles spontaneously arising in pairs out of space where no particles were before. I know this seems like gibberish but that is what they predicted. The problem is that these particles recombine so fast and existed in such a small space that there was no known way to detect them.....until recently when an experiment was constructed for the purpose of detecting them. The theoretical idea behind the experiment was that a device was made so that if there were no spontaneous particles present then one thing should happen but if a certain kind of particle was present (and which would not be present unless it spontaneously arose) then something else would happen.......when they tried it the "something else" happened and this is taken as a confirmation of the existence of the particle and the only way that particle could have been there was by spontaneously arising.

So.....since scientists have alway conceived of empty space as being...well...EMPTY...and by empty they meant that there was nothing at all there of any kind....then for a particle to emerge from this nothingness of the present view of empty space this means that something came out of nothing. Now it could be that scientists will re-evaluate their ideas of "empty space" so that it is not empty but that there are things there that have not been detected. After all the concept of "dark matter" and "dark energy" are relatively new and while there is alot of evidence to support their existence neither has been directly detected as existing in any particular region of space so I suppose (my views) it is possible that they pervade all of space but are simply not detected and these spontaneously arising pairs of virtual particles might turn out to be the first evidence of a way to directly interact with dark matter or dark energy....I guess....but I don't know for sure.....I'm just a rice farmer....I have a much better understanding about how to grow rice or cow peas.....
chownah

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minh-khong
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby minh-khong » Sun Jan 22, 2012 4:32 pm


perkele
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby perkele » Sun Jan 22, 2012 5:45 pm


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retrofuturist
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:56 pm

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

dhamma_newb
Posts: 307
Joined: Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:36 am

Re: Something From Nothing

Postby dhamma_newb » Mon Jan 23, 2012 3:21 pm

The watched mind brings happiness.
Dhp 36

I am larger and better than I thought. I did not know I held so much goodness.
Walt Whitman

perkele
Posts: 653
Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2011 2:37 pm

Re: Something From Nothing

Postby perkele » Mon Jan 23, 2012 10:48 pm


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retrofuturist
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby retrofuturist » Tue Jan 24, 2012 3:08 am

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

dhamma_newb
Posts: 307
Joined: Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:36 am

Re: Something From Nothing

Postby dhamma_newb » Tue Jan 24, 2012 3:59 am

The watched mind brings happiness.
Dhp 36

I am larger and better than I thought. I did not know I held so much goodness.
Walt Whitman

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Son
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby Son » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:22 am

A seed sleeps in soil.
It's cold and alone, hopeless.
Until it blooms above.

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David N. Snyder
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby David N. Snyder » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:58 am

Image




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Son
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby Son » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:02 am

A seed sleeps in soil.
It's cold and alone, hopeless.
Until it blooms above.

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Way~Farer
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby Way~Farer » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:06 am

It is interesting that, if a planet is in the right place, add water, and stand back, and intelligent life evolves. OK, takes a long time to happen, although 'time' is very much a human concept. I wonder if this would happen on any suitably-placed planet, and I suspect it would.

Although, as the Buddha stated, speculating about the beginning of things is not conducive to the path. It is quite possible that in the end, we will discover that the Universe goes through cycles of expansion and contraction in a never-ending process. That is pretty much how the ancient Indian civilization saw it also. The point of the teaching is the cause of dukkha and the ending of it.

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Alex123
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Re: Something From Nothing

Postby Alex123 » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:55 pm

"Life is a struggle. Life will throw curveballs at you, it will humble you, it will attempt to break you down. And just when you think things are starting to look up, life will smack you back down with ruthless indifference..."


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