# Where does mass come from?

1. Jun 22, 2010

### ax3111

I've asked all of my teachers where mass comes from, like what causes things to be "massive" and all that. I know something has mass when it has energy blah blah blah but like, why do things have energy then?

2. Jun 22, 2010

### fcycles

From what I have read... from void you could end up having matter and anti-matter to pop-up! The probability is extremely low.. but not zero.

For the big bang theory, there is various hypothesis being made about it.

3. Jun 22, 2010

### LostConjugate

Mass is a product of fluctuations in fields according to current field theory. The more rapidly a field oscillates the more dense the field is per unit volume, more energy which we perceive as mass.

It is a persistent illusion.

4. Jun 22, 2010

### ax3111

so basically all energy comes from the forces? And with that all mass comes from the forces?

5. Jun 22, 2010

### dulrich

6. Jun 22, 2010

### LostConjugate

What is mass? It is a potential, like a wall in your living room, it has potential, the potential to accelerate something, like a ball thrown at it, which accelerates when it comes in contact with it.

Fluctuations in fields have the potential to accelerate another field, the fields that make up the ball. This is what it boils down to in an elementary way. Though the exact physics are not available yet.

For example it is not fully understood why the particles such as the electron and proton have the specific masses that they have. The study of quantum fields and "strings" is still theory, it is still in the works and there is much we do not understand about the fundamental universe.

7. Jun 22, 2010

### ax3111

okat but from my understanding, acceleration and "potential" to do anything is a product of mass. These things come from mass, not the other way around, or am I wrong?

8. Jun 22, 2010

### LostConjugate

I would say it is the other way around. We, as humans, may have defined mass first as it is a classical point of view.

More correctly I would say that there is no order involved. (E = m = a) in any order you want.

Last edited: Jun 22, 2010