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Why is there something, rather than nothing?

  1. Oct 14, 2007 #1
    The opposite of a great truth is also a great truth - T. Mann

    For example, the opposite of empty set {} is a non-empty set, such as the set of integers, or the finite sets we experience in our mundane life.

    also a lesser context can define the greater context, and vice versa.That is, each is defined by what it is not i.e. its antithesis; for example, the antithesis of quanta and spacetime manifold.

    so what if our universe, or a divergent cyclical set of universes (hence non-empty set with 1:1 correspondence to integers), has a greater context of simplest case i.e. empty set? Might this be indirectly inferred; of course without perturbing such alleged greater context? Such as if there were multiple 'universes'.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 14, 2007 #2
    1. Why assume that the configuration 'nothing' is default?
    2. Why assume that 'something' needs to come out of 'nothing' to be called 'something'?
    3. Quantum Mechanics has shown that there is no fundamental difference between 'something' and 'nothing'.

    The reason that something exists is because the state of nothing is unstable, decaying into something.

    [tex]\Delta E \Delta t \ge \frac{h}{2\pi}[/tex]
     
  4. Oct 14, 2007 #3
    Nequaquam Vacuum

    "nothing" is a human idea- the Universe is
     
  5. Dec 10, 2009 #4
    The Jocaxian Nothingness [Nada Jocaxiano]
    João Carlos Holland de Barcellos
    translated by Debora Policastro

    The “Jocaxian Nothingness” (JN) is the “Nothingness” that exists. It is a physical system devoid not only of physical elements and physical laws, but also of rules of any kind.

    In order to understand and intuit JN as an “existent nothingness”, we can mentally build it as follows: we withdraw all the matter, energy and the field they generate from the universe. Then we can withdraw dark energy and dark matter. What is left is something that is not the nonexistent. Let us continue our mental experiment and suppress elements of the universe: now, we withdraw physical laws and spatial dimensions. If we do not forget to withdraw anything, what is left is a JN: an existent nothingness.

    JN is different from the Nothingness we generally think of. The commonly believed nothingness, which we might call “Trivial Nothingness” to distinguish it from the JN, is something from which nothing can arise, that is, the “Trivial Nothing” follows a rule: “Nothing can happen”. Thus, the “Trivial Nothingness”, the nothingness people generally think of when talking about “nothingness”, is not the simpler possible nothingness, it has at least one restriction rule.

    Jocax did not define the JN as something in which nothing exists. Such definition is dubious and contains some contradictions as: “If in the nothingness nothing exists, then, nothingness itself does not exist”. No. First, Jocax defined what it means to exist: “Something exists when its properties are fulfilled within reality”. Therefore, JN has been defined as something that:

    1- Has no physical elements of any kind (particles, energy, space, etc.)

    2- Has no laws (no rules of any kind).

    Being so, JN could have physically existed. JN is a construction that differs from the “trivial nothingness” since it does not contain the rule “Nothing can happen”. That way, Jocax liberates his JN from semantic paradoxes like: “If it exists, then it does not exist” and claims that this nothingness is SOMETHING that could have existed. That is, JN is the simpler possible physical structure, something like the minimal state of nature. And also the natural candidate for the origin of the universe.

    We must not confuse the definition of the NJ with rules to be followed. It is only the declaration of a state. If nature is in the state defined by conditions 1 and 2 above, we say it is a “Jocaxian-Nothingness”. The state of a system is something that can change, differently from the rule that must be followed by the system (otherwise it would not be a rule). For example, the state “has no physical elements”; it is a state, not a rule because, occasionally this state may change. If it was a rule it could not change (unless another rule eliminated the first one).

    Being free of any elements, JN does not presume the existence of any existing thing but its own and, by the “Occam’s Razor”, it must be the simpler state possible of nature, therefore with no need for explanations about its origin. JN, of course, does not currently exist, but may have existed in a distant past. That is, JN would be the universe itself – defined as a set of all existing things – in its minimal state. Thus we can also say the Universe (being a JN) has always existed.

    JN, as well as everything that can be understood by means of logic, must follow the tautology: “it may or may NOT happen”. This tautology – absolute logical truth – as we shall see, has also a semantic value in JN: it allows things to happen (or not).

    We cannot say that events in the JN must necessarily occur. Eventually, it is possible that nothing really happens, that is, JN may continue “indefinitely” (time does not exist in a JN) without changing its initial state and with no occurrences. But there is a possibility that random phenomena can derive from this absolute nothingness. This conclusion comes logically from the analysis of a system without premises: as JN, by definition, does not have laws, it can be shaped as a logical system without premises.

    We shall interrupt a little in order to open up an explanatory digression. We are dealing with two types of “Jocaxian-Nothingness”: the physical object named “JN”, which was the universe in its minimal state with the properties described above; and the theory which analyses this object, the JN-Theory. The JN-Theory, the theory about the JN-object (this text), uses logical rules to help us understand the JN-Object. But JN-object itself does not follow logical rules, once there are no laws it must obey. Nevertheless, I do not believe we will let possibilities to JN-object escape if we analyze it according to classic logic. However, we must be aware that this logical analysis (JN-Theory) could maybe limit some potentiality of JN-Object.

    Within a system without premises, we cannot conclude that something cannot happen. There are no laws from which we can draw this conclusion. That is, there is no prohibition for anything to happen. If there is no prohibition for anything to happen, then, eventually, something may happen. That is, the tautological logics remain true in a system without premises: “something happens or not”. If something occasionally happens, this something must not obey rules and, therefore, would be totally random and unpredictable.

    We call the first JN randomizations Schizo-Creations. This schizo-creations, once they come from something without laws, are totally random and, if we could watch them, they would seem completely “schizophrenic”. Of course with the first randomizations, JN is no longer the original JN as now it owns something, that is, the JN transforms. Because JN is not limited by any laws, it may eventually also generate laws, to which its elements - now itself – would have to obey.

    Let us show how the random generation of laws can produce a logical universe: suppose laws are generated randomly in a sequence. If a new law is generated and does not conflict with the others, all of them remain undamaged in the set of generated laws. However, if a law that conflicts with other laws previously generated appears, it replaces (kills) the previous laws that are inconsistent with it, since it must be obeyed (until a newer law opposes to it). Thus, in a true “natural selection” of laws, only a little set of laws compatible to each other would last. That answers a fundamental philosophical question about our universe: “Why does the universe follow logical rules?”

    Thereby, the Jocaxian Nothingness is the natural candidate for the origin of the our cosmo, since it is the simpler possible state nature could present: a state of such simplicity there would not be the need to explain its existence. And, by logical consequence of this state, anything could be (or not) randomized, even our physical laws and elementary particles.
     
  6. Dec 10, 2009 #5
    The question might be more properly stated as "Why is there zankaon's personal experience?"
     
  7. Dec 10, 2009 #6

    apeiron

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    OK, I agree with the generality of this, but are you saying anything new?

    This is as old as Anaximander's apeiron, as old as Paticca-samuppada (Buddhist dependent co-arising). It is CS Peirce's semiotics. Are you extending these ideas in anyway or just rediscovering them?

    I would suggest you consider vagueness as something even simpler than "nothingness" - even of the Jocaxian kind. Vagueness is also simpler than even nothingness's counterpart, everythingness or plenitude.

    See this thread for some orientation and let us know if you are saying something different?

    https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=301514
     
  8. Dec 10, 2009 #7
    The originality of the idea is two:

    1- "WHY" the nothingness coud be generate anything : Because tehre have NO LAWS.
    If there is no law then there is no restriction ou conservation law too.
    therefore things can happen.
    ( anyone explain this with the SAME idea? )

    2- The question : WHY PHYSICAL LAWS MUTT OBEY THE LOGIC?
    Also is explained by "natural selection" from Jocaxian nothingness.
    What theory explain the origin of the physical laws?
     
  9. Dec 10, 2009 #8
    "Within a system without premises, we cannot conclude that something cannot happen. There are no laws from which we can draw this conclusion. That is, there is no prohibition for anything to happen. If there is no prohibition for anything to happen, then, eventually, something may happen. That is, the tautological logics remain true in a system without premises: “something happens or not”. If something occasionally happens, this something must not obey rules and, therefore, would be totally random and unpredictable."

    "Within a system without premises we cannot conlucde that something cannot happen...". So if we imagine a possible world in which there is absolutely nothing, it cannot be a law, in such a world, that nothing happens, because the existence of such a law would require something to substantiate it.

    I see how someone could believe that to be true, but then you go on to say, "then, eventually, something may happen". But even if there is no law preventing something happening in an empty possible world, it may still be the case that nothing does, in fact, happen. That is, there is a whole range of possible worlds in which, initially, nothing exists, and because there are not even any laws, there is no law preventing something coming into existence. But there will be at least one of those possible worlds in which nothing ever does come into existence. In order to explain why there is something rather than nothing, you would have to explain why this is not the case with our world.
     
  10. Dec 10, 2009 #9

    apeiron

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    Yes, this is way I would look at it. If we start with every degree of freedom, then this is both everything and nothing. If things are dynamic in all directions, then no direction really exists.

    So what has to be added to this chaos is constraints. And once constraints start (as you say, there could be a wide variety of proto-constraints that get tried) you get a rapid phase transition across the system because only globally self-consistent constraints will have the lawful strength to persist.

    You can find good models of this in self-organising criticality - Ising models, Kauffman's autocatalytic nets, etc.

    And it is also the metaphysical view put forward at the beginning of philosophy by Anaximander. C. H. Kahn's Anaximander and the Origins of Greek Cosmology is an excellent source.

    Again, I think this is taken for granted by a reasonable number of people. So your foundational picture is right and deserves to be more widely understood.

    But the job is then to cash out the metaphysics as physics. This would demand a much more mathematical framing of the ideas.
     
  11. Dec 11, 2009 #10
    .
    The answer is : By chance.

    Of course the nothing could be stay as a nothing but there is a possibility to not.
    It is random efect, like the time that the eletron decay a level and issue a foton:
    There is no law to prevent or say what is the moment it will decay, its a random event.
    .
    .
    But you dont say that have no laws in this system.
    Beside this, you dont say you start from NOTHING, it seens in that text you link
    yuou DISCARD origin from cosmo from nothingness, therefore your stuff is not a nothingness
    but it is something diferent from nothingness.
    .
    .
    If there is a chaos then there are something diferent from nothingness !!
    .
    .
    The problem is that at beginning there is no laws neither logic laws
    and hence is difficult to model using mathematics because this use logic too.
     
  12. Dec 14, 2009 #11
    define "opposite".
     
  13. Dec 14, 2009 #12
    Do you mean methodologically when we approach the problem we can't use logic, or do you have some insight into the beginning of the universe showing that logic and laws didn't apply :confused:?
     
  14. Dec 14, 2009 #13

    apeiron

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    Or the third option that I prefer. If laws are self-consistent global regularities that emerge, then the laws don't have to be "in existent" from the start so long as they are immanent.
     
  15. Dec 15, 2009 #14

    sas3

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    This concept is very hard to grasp.
    No time/space and no energy/matter, we have no way of knowing what happens in JN and can only speculate using the laws of our universe which do not apply to the place we are trying to describe.
    So doesn’t this make any statement we make about JN complete nonsense?
    Dr. Who called it E-space (but there was stuff (planets and people, Well Vampires) in it).

    I think the entire universe can be summed up in a simple equation “-1+1=0” right now we are at 1 or -1 and JN would be 0 .
    But that is just my best guess about the nothingness.
     
  16. Dec 15, 2009 #15
     
  17. Dec 15, 2009 #16

    apeiron

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    I'd agree with both these statements.

    I would add that opposite(A) = Not (A) has both symmetric and asymmetric possibilities.

    Symmetric is when the opposites are of the same scale. So the plus and minus of charge for example.

    But real opposites is about symmetry-breaking - opposites in scale.

    So atom~void would be an example. The A is as small as possible and the not-A is as large as possible. Same with event and context and other local~global oppositions.

    It is also an important point is that we can know that whatever is observed to come out of a vagueness must logically have been present originally as one of its potentials. But that does not necessarily exhaust all its possibilities and so define it. On the other hand, it might. So this is a live area of argument.
     
  18. Dec 15, 2009 #17
    In that manner I think yes:

    "...
    We shall interrupt a little in order to open up an explanatory digression. We are dealing with two types of “Jocaxian-Nothingness”: the physical object named “JN”, which was the universe in its minimal state with the properties described above; and the theory which analyses this object, the JN-Theory. The JN-Theory, the theory about the JN-object (this text), uses logical rules to help us understand the JN-Object. But JN-object itself does not follow logical rules, once there are no laws it must obey. Nevertheless, I do not believe we will let possibilities to JN-object escape if we analyze it according to classic logic. However, we must be aware that this logical analysis (JN-Theory) could maybe limit some potentiality of JN-Object.
    ..."



    No, because if we analise it using logic, we can get a portion of the possibility we can have
    from this extrange object .



    The best equation for JN is :
    JN = 0 / 0
     
  19. Dec 15, 2009 #18
    nothing is for nothing
     
  20. Dec 15, 2009 #19
    Hello all,

    So, would I then be right in saying that from this JN-object (manifold ?) , anything and everything could manifest itself ?

    Everything being the sum of all possible ‘anythings’ that could pop up, but only some of the ‘anythings’, and certainly not everything, could subsist and sustain themselves.

    Seems to me that the ‘need’ for something to emerge, become and evolve from a JN-object has so much potential and strength, that I just don’t see how a null outcome, ‘nothing’, being only one possibility out of everything, can be that dominant resultant, never mind sustain itself.

    Regards,

    VE
     
  21. Dec 16, 2009 #20
    .
    YES! Exactly.
    .

    .
    Yes, because laws have defined to be obeied.
    Thus, if another law pop into existence and contradict some old law then the old law
    can not subsiste.



    I dont know if I understand but,
    the all infinite possibilities only one stay a nothing.
     
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