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Poll: The universe/existance is infinite:

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  1. #1
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    The universe is infinite




    Hrm... on second thought I wish I had done that differntly.
    Just:
    The universe is infinite in some way: yes or no

    Maybe it will work like this though I don't know.
    What do you guys think?
    Obviously a non infinite universe is easy to concieve but how about a universe that is infinite it some respects; or all respects... I can't decide which one I think we have...
    Anyways I just wanna know if you all think the universe is in some way infinite. so I guess we can just add the top two options up if necissary.
    Yo Bizzaa!!

  2. #2
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Most astro-phyicists seem to subscribe to a constantly expanding universe these days, while others still hold to 'Hubble's Constant' model of an expanding then contracting universe; in either case the idea of an infinite universe does not seem to fit.

    In whatever way infinity is expressed and packaged, the mathematics of our existence, or indeed the existence of anything, appears to be outside of known natural laws.

    ps. I am assuming that we are not including any 'Creator God' in this infinity question. In Judeo-Christian and other theistic traditions He/'they' appear as the exception.
    Last edited by FruitandNut; November 28th, 2005 at 10:57 AM.
    "We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are." - Anais Nin.
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  3. #3
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    I went with 'in no respects', I can't think of any aspect of the universe that is infinite. The first two that come to mind are time and size. But the universe is expanding, so it is not infinite, and if it is expanding its history can be traced back to a begining.
    meep

  4. #4
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    The universe is infinite in its possibilities. Since we cannot predict the future, infinite possibility is equal to infinite universe. All of its limitations are placed there by human perception and are not rules the universe is bound to follow. It has no limits to size or time or any other limits. It is a grave error in judgement to believe that we can judge the universe based upon our feeble observations to date. We have a rich history of being wrong. I believe that us being wrong is the safest bet of all. We are most definately finite in our logic.
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  5. #5
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    *wipes Lay's Masterpiece Barbecue Chips crumbs from fingers*

    *wait...I want one more*

    *K...now I'm ready*

    Humans are finite and limited beings in this physical force bound by the laws of time, space and matter. The universe itself is nothing more than a perception to us. It might not even *really* be there. So, ultimately, the universe is nothing more than but another slave to our perception. In other realms of existence time, space, and matter may not be laws that are present. So who knows what those places consist of.

    However, within the confines of our perception, it is more conceivable that the universe is infinite than finite. I'm sure there are some fancy laws of physics and nature that would tell us that cycles repeat infinitely. The only way the universe could be finite was if something could destroy the universe. And that would mean that there is some "force" that exists somewhere "outside" the universe and that would mean it is a universe of sorts, too.

    *crunch crunch crunch*
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  6. #6
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    We have determined somewhat certainly that the universe is expanding, from things such as red shifts and other concepts I have little knowledge of. In that case, the universe could not be infinite in size.

    What, then, is beyond it? I am content to say "God" and avoid a headache.

  7. #7
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    Re: The universe is infinite


    200th post!!! WHOOOOOOOOO




    The universe is infinite in its possibilities
    Could you clarify this? It's possible for centaurs to pop out of thin air and start a soccer team?

    Also i believe you contradict yourself by saying there are infitite possiblities and the future cannot be predicted, it would be ruling out a possibility.
    All of its limitations are placed there by human perception and are not rules the universe is bound to follow
    I have to disagree, if perception defined the rules then if i percieved I had matrix style powers it could be so.

    Another example is technology. Technology is developed when people can understand what a certain governing in the universe entails.
    It has no limits to size or time or any other limits
    Any proof on this claim? Both are debateable

    We have a rich history of being wrong.
    Humans learn through mistakes. A young kid in school with no prior experience will not ace every single assignment, he will get things wrong and learn.

    But given time we get things right.

    I would like to reword my idea though after reading Perv's post and i'm going to build off his idea: The universe is infitite in possibilities within its guiding principles
    meep

  8. #8
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by mrmeepers

    200th post!!! WHOOOOOOOOO




    Could you clarify this? It's possible for centaurs to pop out of thin air and start a soccer team?
    All things do not need to be possible for infinite possibliities to exist.

    Also i believe you contradict yourself by saying there are infitite possiblities and the future cannot be predicted, it would be ruling out a possibility.
    I have to disagree, if perception defined the rules then if i percieved I had matrix style powers it could be so.
    Lots and lots of non-possibilities can be eliminated. There are an infinite number of non-possibilities. That does not detract from the fact that there are still infinite possiblilties left.

    Example: Take all whole numbers. It is an infinite set. Now eliminate all odd numbers. It is still an infinite set. Case closed.


    Another example is technology. Technology is developed when people can understand what a certain governing in the universe entails.
    Any proof on this claim? Both are debateable
    Limits are set by perception. They are arbitrary. We say, "This is the end of the universe," yet, the universe is not done and that limit was transitory. In order to claim true limitations we would need to explain the universe in its entirety, which we cannot do.

    Discoveries add new syntax to the language of understanding. To think that we have reached the end of our journey now is a mighty big leap of faith, don't you think? People were certain they had it all figured out one-hundred years ago. We see them as naive now. In a hundred years we will be preceived as naive, and rightly so.

    Humans learn through mistakes. A young kid in school with no prior experience will not ace every single assignment, he will get things wrong and learn.

    But given time we get things right.
    If we have enough time, I agree, we will learn all we can. It is uncertain that this will be enough to understand the universe in its entirety, but I will think positive.

    I would like to reword my idea though after reading Perv's post and i'm going to build off his idea: The universe is infitite in possibilities within its guiding principles
    Brilliant! A smashing 200th post!
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  9. #9
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    I think many people have a misconception of the Universe as I see it. Let’s take this back to 6th grade math.

    Finite - Line segment. |----------|
    Infinite – Line <-------->

    People are making the mistake of thinking that only these two exist. However there is another possibility, is there not?

    Infinite – Ray |-------->

    A ray has a beginning and goes on forever.

    You can tell me that the Universe was created, and I will give you the benefit of the doubt. However until you tell me what can destroy matter, I will have to tell you that the Universe will go on forever. Matter does not simply cease to exist, and as long as there is matter, there is a Universe.

    (please do not say anti-matter)
    We have enough youth, how about a fountain of smart?

  10. #10
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Clarification on the expansion matter. On average, galaxies seem to be moving away from each other at an increasing rate and on average, further objects are moving away from each other at a faster rate than nearby objects. This phenomenon is known as expansion, but it does not rule out an infinite universe (though the majority of the scienfic community believes the universe to be finite, if I am not mistaken).

    The infinite can play some interesting mind games. For instance, there are an infinite number of integers (..., -3, -2, -1, 0, 1, 2, 3,...). So, if that is the case, then there should be a "half-infinite" number of even integers, but not a full infinite, right? Wrong. There are just as many even integers as integers. Why is this? Because one can create a one to one relationship between all the integers and all even numbers. For every integer, you can find an even integer to pair up with it. The easiest pairing would be to pair every integer with its double. As such -3 would be paired with -6, 174 would be paired with 328, and 14,293,842 would be paired with 28,527,684. No matter how high or low you go on the scale, you can always find a number that is double the number that you found. That is what distinguishes finite sets from infinites sets. With infinite sets, there is no number at which you need to stop. Our counting system doesn't stop at a googol or a googolplex or a googolplex squared or a googolplex to the googolplexth power. Simply put, an infinite set doesn't stop at a finite amount like a finite set. When dealing with infinity the part can and often does equal the whole. Of course, there are exceptions to that, but that is beyond the point.

    If the universe is infinite, it can still expand. Imagine if every point that is now n light years away now is 2n light years away in 10 billion years. There is still a one to one correspondence between n and 2n. It is not as if there is no space to go for an infinite universe to expand...the infinite is boundless. The infinite is one of the points where human intuition breaks down. Our brains have finite capability and are unable to fully comprehend that which is infinite.

    As for what I think...I'm not sure. I think it is very possible that the universe is infinite, but it is also possible that it is finite. I will wait to make a decision until I have a bit more knowledge on the topic. My bias is in favor of a finite universe...though I can in no way rule out an infinite one as of yet.
    Quote Originally Posted by PerVirtuous
    Lots and lots of non-possibilities can be eliminated. There are an infinite number of non-possibilities. That does not detract from the fact that there are still infinite possiblilties left.
    I am confused about what you consider to be a possibility. Could you clarify a bit?
    孟柏民
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  11. #11
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor
    I think many people have a misconception of the Universe as I see it. Let’s take this back to 6th grade math.

    Finite - Line segment. |----------|
    Infinite – Line <-------->

    People are making the mistake of thinking that only these two exist. However there is another possibility, is there not?

    Infinite – Ray |-------->

    A ray has a beginning and goes on forever.
    Ah, interesting...the aspect of time is up for debate again. In regard to the past, there are two possibilities:
    |-------| and <-------|
    As well, the future has two possibilities:
    |-------| and |------->
    If you combine the two, you get a total of four possiblities:
    |------------|, |----------->, <------------|, and <----------->
    To me, the third one seems a bit implausible, as there should be no reason that a universe without a beginning should end. So, I will agree with you.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tongue
    You can tell me that the Universe was created, and I will give you the benefit of the doubt. However until you tell me what can destroy matter, I will have to tell you that the Universe will go on forever. Matter does not simply cease to exist, and as long as there is matter, there is a Universe.

    (please do not say anti-matter)
    My answer to that is that if the universe can begin acausally, it can end acausally. It is not necessitated, but it is indeed possible. Now, in our experience, we have not seen the destruction of energy or matter nor the creation of either from nothing, merely the conversion between the two, which is where the law of conservation of matter and energy is derived. However, we do not have logical proof that it cannot happen without the assumption of universal causality, something for which we lack a real basis. We'd have to know much more about time and space than we already do if we are to determine what is the case.
    孟柏民
    Formerly Neverending (for all you old-timers)

  12. #12
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by PerVirtuous
    All things do not need to be possible for infinite possibliities to exist.
    Wha?

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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by Neverending
    I am confused about what you consider to be a possibility. Could you clarify a bit?
    Certainly. Our weather patterns are so complicated that it is impossible for us to predict them, even with the best and most complicated of models. Even when we witness a weather event we cannot completely track its cause. The best we can do is come up with possibilities which we group into that which is more and less probable. Our understanding of all phenomena is composed of possibilities which we group into probabilities. In the case of the universe, and therefore reality itself, we have found that defining possibilities is as far as the human mind has been able to understand. Therefore, to us, the universe is possibilities, some more likely than others.
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by PerVirtuous
    Certainly. Our weather patterns are so complicated that it is impossible for us to predict them, even with the best and most complicated of models. Even when we witness a weather event we cannot completely track its cause. The best we can do is come up with possibilities which we group into that which is more and less probable. Our understanding of all phenomena is composed of possibilities which we group into probabilities. In the case of the universe, and therefore reality itself, we have found that defining possibilities is as far as the human mind has been able to understand. Therefore, to us, the universe is possibilities, some more likely than others.
    I agree that there are infinitely many possiblities, though I am not so sure that there are an infinite number of impossiblities, as one has to have knowledge that something cannot be true for it to be considered impossible and we have only a finite amount of knowledge. Of course, if you consider an impossiblity to be a universe that is not possible, there would be an infinite amount of impossibilites, as each specific impossible situation could be combined with the infinite list of possibilities concerning other matters.
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  15. #15
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by Neverending
    I agree that there are infinitely many possiblities, though I am not so sure that there are an infinite number of impossiblities, as one has to have knowledge that something cannot be true for it to be considered impossible and we have only a finite amount of knowledge. Of course, if you consider an impossiblity to be a universe that is not possible, there would be an infinite amount of impossibilites, as each specific impossible situation could be combined with the infinite list of possibilities concerning other matters.
    It was just a logical juxtaposition. If infinite possibilities exist, infinite impossibilities must also exist. I don't have time to list them all right now, I'll work on that tonight and get back to you...
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  16. #16
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by PV
    If infinite possibilities exist, infinite impossibilities must also exist.
    Not necessarily. If I define impossibilities as concepts that have been shown not to be possible and possibilities as all concepts that are not impossibilities, then there are a finite amount of impossiblities and a potentially infinite amount of possiblities.
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  17. #17
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    I tend to see the universe as infinite but finite. Infinite in time, finite in space due to a constant expanding and contracting (Like a rubber band!).

    Just my two cents anyways.
    But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.
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  18. #18
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Can anyone here visualize "nothing"? In other words, complete emptiness? I'd like to hear that described. If not, then you subscribe to the infinite theory. Was there nothing before something? How can matter come from nothing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor-Tongue
    Infinite – Ray |-------->
    Quote Originally Posted by Razor-Tongue
    A ray has a beginning and goes on forever.

    Yes indeed. For an infinite quantity, all it needs is for one "end" to be infinite, not both.

    For those of you who believe that time had a beginning, please describe this process.

    Personally, I don't believe that time exists. Not only was there no beginning, but there's no such thing as a beginning or ending of anything, or succession, or "always". It just is, and it doesn't change, because it is.

    Quote Originally Posted by Neverending
    If the universe is infinite, it can still expand. Imagine if every point that is now n light years away now is 2n light years away in 10 billion years. There is still a one to one correspondence between n and 2n. It is not as if there is no space to go for an infinite universe to expand...the infinite is boundless.

    You're talking about the universe and space as if they are different animals. But then, you are Neverending, so you should know...

    The points you are speaking of you have assigned relative qualities, hence they will behave that way in your model. But there's also no philosophical reason to assume that there can't be absolute points in the universe, which don't expand but are permanently fixed. This throws your example of distances into a hypothetical. What you're describing about expansion does not have to be those points, but other points that move. All you have described is the movement of matter. You haven't tied the matter to the universe. We observe expansion and we assume that this expansion is what the universe is, but we have no way of knowing that.

    And I don't think it works to apply a mathematical example to reality. Math is in the abstract. Integers do not really exist. Negative numbers are contrivances. There's no such thing as a negative value. We can imagine infinite pairs, but we haven't observed them.

    All we can do with mathematical examples is say "with math, I can imagine this set of conditions as existing." But it does not mean that those conditions really exist.
    anything could be an illusion and we wouldn't know the difference... proof schmoof...

  19. #19
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by XM
    The points you are speaking of you have assigned relative qualities, hence they will behave that way in your model. But there's also no philosophical reason to assume that there can't be absolute points in the universe, which don't expand but are permanently fixed. This throws your example of distances into a hypothetical. What you're describing about expansion does not have to be those points, but other points that move. All you have described is the movement of matter. You haven't tied the matter to the universe. We observe expansion and we assume that this expansion is what the universe is, but we have no way of knowing that.

    And I don't think it works to apply a mathematical example to reality. Math is in the abstract. Integers do not really exist. Negative numbers are contrivances. There's no such thing as a negative value. We can imagine infinite pairs, but we haven't observed them.

    All we can do with mathematical examples is say "with math, I can imagine this set of conditions as existing." But it does not mean that those conditions really exist.

    I was merely demonstrating that an expanding universe does not necessitate a finite universe. The model works perfectly well in this regard.
    孟柏民
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  20. #20
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    Re: The universe is infinite

    Quote Originally Posted by Neverending
    I was merely demonstrating that an expanding universe does not necessitate a finite universe. The model works perfectly well in this regard.

    Oh, yes, I agree on that point then. Maybe what I wasn't able to digest was this part:

    Neverending:
    If the universe is infinite, it can still expand.

    That appears to be contradictory, and I don't think a mathematical model can answer it. Isn't the definition of an infinite space.... infinite? Something for which there is no greater than? What is infinity + 1? There's no such thing. The '1' adds no value to infinity. Thus I'd say an infinite space cannot be added to.
    anything could be an illusion and we wouldn't know the difference... proof schmoof...

 

 
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