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On infinity: in the universe and Krishna

I just listened to an interesting interview with John Barrow, a cosmologist and mathematician who talks about his book: The Infinite Book : A Short Guide to the Boundless, Timeless and Endless.

He explains how the Universe may or may not be infinity and outlines a theory where our particular Universe is finite, but there exists an infinitely old realm of unlimited parallel universes beyond ours. We will however, never know for sure, since, in order to get information from those other Universes that information would have to travel faster than the speed of light, which is, of course, impossible (according to Einstein).

This theory sounds remarkably similar to the view of the Universe given in the Srimad-Bhagavatam. Maha-Visnu is in the infinite spiritual causal ocean where time does not exist and generates unlimited finite Universes just like ours.

Barrow also explains how there are different sized infinities (as discovered by Galileo Galilei). There are, in fact, an unlimited number of infinities, each larger than the next. The infinite infinity is mathematically impossible (as shown by Georg Cantor, but hypothetically possible for a meta-physical being such as God.

There are several statements in Vedic literature that the spiritual energy is three times larger than the material energy (SB 2.6.20 and Caitanya Caritamrita Madhya-lila Chapter 21 Verses 51, 55, 56, 57, 87). Devotees always told me that these statements were not to be taken literally. I was however never satisfied with that explanation. However, using Cantor??(TM)s mathematics of infinite sets, it is indeed perfectly reasonable to talk about multiple differently sized infinities.

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  • Jason Robison 19/01/2006 6:34pm (11 years ago)

    I'm not sure how relavent you will find this to be to that article, but I'd like to make the point that there is an infinite amount of space in our universe, with an infinite amount of matter, which was once an infinitely small/powerful black hole. How I understand it is that an infinite amount of matter came out of the Big Bang and is expanding into infinite space. Now if there was an infinite amount of matter from the Big Bang, then matter would still be coming out right?????? Correct me if I'm wrong, because I'm only 16 years old but I'm so interested in the universes and everything that goes on in it, I want to know everything I possibly can. at this time, I'm reading Stephen Hawking's book "The Universe In a Nutshell" Please reply or at least give me a website to help answer that question.

  • Dr. Frank-Peter Seidenberg 19/12/2005 9:38pm (12 years ago)

    I just listened to the interview with J. Barrow and found it very interesting. He discusses multiple bubbles of finite universes which possibly have their origin in a massive infinite universe or power. We can't see out of our own "bubble" universe and may never be able to see or realize all of the other universes, let alone the source of all. Now doesn't this sound exactly like what is discussed in the Srimad Bhagavatam concerning the creation of the material worlds and a "maybe" spiritual realm. But then empirical scientists are hesitant to us the "G" word, lest they be criticized by their peers for not being "scientific". So the person writing the SB must have been an extraordinary genius; from another dimension; or in touch with a higher power.

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