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Can the laws of physics prove God?



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When I heard the following question at the seminar, I still believed in God (I am now an atheist) and was shocked by its elegance and depth: “If there is a God who created the entire universe and all its laws of physics, God Do you obey God’s own laws? Or can God replace his own laws, such as traveling faster than the speed of light, so as to be able to be in two different places at the same time?” The answer can help us prove whether God exists or is this science Is there a place where empiricism and religious belief intersect without real answers?

When I received this question, I was in a locked state and immediately became interested in it. This is not surprising-tragic events such as pandemics often make us doubt the existence of God: if there is a merciful God, why would such a disaster happen? Therefore, the idea that God may be “bound”

; by the laws of physics (which also governs the limitations of chemistry and biology and medical science) is worth exploring.

If God cannot break the laws of physics, then she may not be as strong as you expect. But if it is possible, why have we not seen any evidence that the laws of physics are broken in the universe?

To solve this problem, let us break it down. First, can God travel faster than the speed of light? Let us look at the problem on the surface.Light travels at a speed of about 3 x 105 Kilometers per second, or 186,000 miles per hour. We learned in school that nothing can be faster than the speed of light-when its double lithium crystal is set to maximum, even the USS Enterprise in “Star Trek”.

But is this true? A few years ago, a group of physicists believed that particles called velocons travel faster than the speed of light. Fortunately, their existence as real particles is considered extremely unlikely. If they do exist, they will have a fictitious quality, and the structure of space and time will be distorted-causing a violation of causality (and possibly a headache for God).

So far, it seems that no object has been observed to travel faster than the speed of light. This in itself does not say anything about God. It just enhances the knowledge that light does spread very quickly.

Things become more interesting when you consider how far the light has traveled from the beginning. Suppose the traditional Big Bang cosmology and the speed of light are 3 x 105 km / s, then we can calculate that the light has spread about 10twenty four 1 km in the 13.8 billion years of the existence of the universe, or more precisely, the existence of an observable universe.

The universe expands at a speed of about 70km/s per Mpc (1 Mpc = 1 megapascal ~ 30 million kilometers), so current estimates indicate that the distance from the edge of the universe is 46 billion light years. As time goes by and space increases, light must travel a longer time to reach us.

The Hubble Space Telescope has observed more universe than we thought, but the most distant object we have seen is a Milky Way GN-z11. This is about 10twenty three The distance is kilometers or 13.4 billion light years, which means it took 13.4 billion years for the light from the Milky Way to reach us. But when the light “extinguishes”, the Milky Way is only about 3 billion light years away from our Milky Way.

Since the Big Bang, we have not been able to observe or see the development of the entire universe, because there is not enough time to reach us from the first fraction of a second. Some people think that, therefore, we cannot be sure whether the laws of physics can be broken in other regions of the universe-maybe they are just local accidental laws. This brings us into something bigger than the universe.

Multiverse

Many cosmologists believe that the universe may be part of a broader universe, a universe in which many different universes coexist but do not interact.The idea of ​​pluralism is supported by inflation theory-the universe has undergone huge expansion 10 years ago-32 second. Inflation is an important theory because it can explain why the universe has the shape and structure we see around it.

But if inflation happens once, why not happen multiple times? We know from experiments that quantum fluctuations can cause pairs of particles to suddenly exist, but only disappear in an instant. If such fluctuations can produce particles, why not the entire atom or the universe? It has been suggested that during chaotic periods of inflation, not everything happens at the same rate-quantum fluctuations in the inflation may produce bubbles, which will explode into the universe on their own.

A picture of bubbles containing the universe.
Are we living in a bubble universe?
Juergen Faelchle / Shutterstock

But how does God adapt to the multiverse? A headache for cosmologists is the fact that our universe seems to fine-tune the existence of life. The elementary particles produced in the Big Bang had the right properties to form hydrogen and deuterium, which produced the first stars.

Then, the laws of physics governing nuclear reactions in these stars produced the matter of life—carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen. So, how do all the laws and parameters of physics in the universe have the value to allow the development of stars, planets and ultimately life?

Some people think this is just a lucky coincidence. Others say we shouldn’t be surprised when we see bio-friendly laws of physics-they give us life after all, so what else can we see? However, some theists believe that this shows that there is a God who creates favorable conditions.

But God is not a valid scientific explanation. On the contrary, the multiverse theory solves this mystery because it allows different universes to have different laws of physics. Therefore, it is not surprising that we happen to see one of the few universes where we can support life. Of course, you cannot refute the idea that God may have created a multiverse.

These are all very hypothetical. One of the biggest criticisms of the multiverse theory is that because our universe does not seem to interact with other universes, the concept of multiverse cannot be directly tested.

Quantum weird

Now let us consider whether God can be in more than one place at the same time. Many of the scientific techniques we use in space science are based on the counter-intuitive theory of the world of tiny atoms and particles called quantum mechanics.

The theory realizes something called quantum entanglement: weird connected particles. If two particles are entangled, even if they are far apart and not interacting, you will automatically manipulate its partner when you manipulate it. The description of entanglement is better than the description I give here-but it is simple and I can follow.

Imagine a particle decomposed into two sub-particles A and B. The attributes of the child particles must add up to the attributes of the original particle-this is the principle of conservation. For example, all particles have a quantum property called “spin”-roughly speaking, they move like tiny compass needles. If the “spin” of the original particle is zero, then one of the two sub-particles must have positive spin, and the other sub-particle must have negative spin, which means that each of A and B has a 50% chance Has positive or spin. Negative rotation. (According to quantum mechanics, by definition, particles are different states mixed together until you actually measure them.)

Even if the attributes of A and B are independent of each other, they are entangled with each other, even if they are located in separate laboratories on separate planets. Therefore, if you measure the spin of A, you will find that it is positive. Imagine a friend measured the spin of B at the same time you measured A. For the conservation principle to work, she must find that the spin of B is negative.

But-this is where things get dimmed-like child particle A, B has a positive probability of 50:50, so when A’s spin state is measured as positive, its spin state “becomes” negative. In other words, information about the spin state is immediately transferred between the two child particles. This transfer of quantum information is obviously faster than the speed of light. Given that Einstein himself described quantum entanglement as a “strange action at a distance,” I think all of us can forgive the discovery of this rather strange effect.

Therefore, after all, there is something faster than the speed of light: quantum information. This does not prove or disprove God, but it can help us think about God from a physical point of view-perhaps like a tangled cluster of particles, passing quantum information back and forth, occupying many places at the same time? There are even multiple universes at the same time?

Artist's concept of entangled particles.
Strange action.
Julik Peter/Shutterstock

I have this image of God, spinning the galaxy-sized plates and juggling planet-sized balls-throwing information from one crumbling universe to another to keep everything going. Fortunately, God can perform multiple tasks-maintaining the structure of running time and space. All it takes is a little faith.

Is this article close to answering the questions raised? I suspect it is not: if you believe in God like me, then the idea that God is bound by the laws of physics is nonsense, because God can do everything, even faster than the speed of light. If you don’t believe in God, then this question is equally absurd, because without God, nothing can spread faster than light. Perhaps this question is indeed a question of agnostics, who do not know whether there is a God.

This is indeed the difference between science and religion. Science needs to prove that religious belief needs belief. Scientists do not try to prove or refute the existence of God, because they know that no experiment can detect God. If you believe in God, then the discovery of the universe by scientists is not important-any universe can be considered consistent with God.

Our view of God, physics, or other things ultimately depends on perspective. But let’s end with a truly authoritative quote. No, this is not the Bible. It is not a cosmology textbook either. From “The Reaper” by Terry Pratchett:

“Light thinks it spreads faster than anything, but this is wrong. No matter how fast the light travels, it will find that the darkness always gets there first and is waiting for it.”

conversation


Monica Grady, Professor of Planetary and Space Sciences, Open university

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.


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