For your consideration and comment I propose the following simple thought and logic experiment. FYI - for my purposes the term universe = multiverse = all of existence.
A Simplified Proof That The Universe Cannot be Explained
1. Consider an empty universe.
a. There is nothing to cause anything to happen.
2. Now consider the first thing in the universe.
It could be a particle, a force, an underlying structure/law of the universe or even God.
It doesn't matter what it is.
3. This first thing has no cause since there was nothing before it.
a. Therefore it cannot be explained.
4. Therefore the universe cannot be explained.
5. Corollary - Alternately, the first thing might have always been there.
a. This to cannot be explained since the first thing still has no cause.
6. Ultimate Corollary - Given that the universe itself cannot be explained, then nothing in the universe can be ultimately explained. (This corollary was added to the original proof on 5/21/16 by nano with admin permission. See Message 166)
Thank you for your attention, your consideration and your comments.
************************************************** Added on 10/23/16:
End of Discussion Proof Reformulation
Taking into account all of existence and considering everything that ever existed anywhere, there are only two possible origin states for the first thing ever to exist:
- It either created itself from absolutely nothing, which is impossible to explain
- Or it was always there and had no beginning, which is also impossible to explain
- Therefore, the origin of the universe cannot be explained
Where: Universe = Multiverse = All of Existence
Edited by Admin, : Make text of link to thread be the title, and minor cleanup.
Edited by Admin, : More cleanup.
Edited by nano, : Added #6 to the proof with Percy's permission
Edited by nano, : changed "universe = multiverse" to "universe = multiverse = all of existence"
If in fact, a second and third thing can be explained, then it is possible that the universe is a third, or even a 100th thing following a first unexplained cause. By your current admission, we would have to regard a tracing of the universe to at least one (or possibly more) describable precursor(s) as an explanation.
As the proof shows only the first thing in the universe cannot be explained.
If such explanations are instead disallowed, then we can extend your original argument to say that nothing we observe can be explained, because all things we know rely on the universe first to have existed.
Your stement suggests an interesting second corollary to my proof. Namely, that ultimately nothing can be explained because at the root of it the universe cannot be explained. I will have to think about this.
I believe that the only way to escape the conundrum expressed above is that the original concept, namely that we can only have an explanation if that explanation is ultimate must be rejected because that is not the sense in which we use the term explanation.
No conundrum exists. As the proof shows, the origin of the universe cannot be explained.
Except Quantum Field Theory can explain how something can come into existence without a cause where before there was nothing. Doesn't this negate points 3, 3.a and 4?
No, because if Quantum Field Theory was the first thing in the universe you can't explain how it got there.
As a hypothetical example I offer the following: Suppose the laws of physics was the first thing in the universe. Their existence can't be explained, but QFT would be a second or greater thing able to be explained by the existence of the laws of physics.
If the logic used in your proof is necessarily correct, and doesn't require a causal explanation, then that would leave you without a proof. If it isn't necessarily correct, then that leaves you without a proof.
I maintain the simple logic of my proof stands on its own.
Nano is perhaps a bit unclear in the OP. His first step is to consider "an empty universe"; does this mean "nothing at all" (i.e. nothing in the philosophical sense) or "no mass-energy, but quantum field theory and the fabric of space-time"?
His second step is to consider "the first thing" that exists in this "empty universe", which "could be a particle, a force, an underlying structure/law of the universe or even God." I read this as including QFT and the fabric of the universe, so I conclude that his starting point must be "nothing at all"; no QFT, no space-time.
Yes, you read me correctly. I was trying to keep the proof simple. I like to think of it as the null set.
Edited by nano, : added comment about the null set