Please note: This is the second session of a nine-week study group. For an overview of the entire effort, see below.
Three of the original four horsemen
Christopher Hitchens died in 2011. Of course, we’ll all die and questions will be asked, “What is your legacy? What have you accomplished?”
Over the years I have heard the four horsemen speak and sometimes they would say things about people’s faith in hostile and denigrating ways. It made me a bit uncomfortable.
I was often reminded of my father and mother, scolding me for my arrogance, “Who are you to question someone else’s faith?” Instead of denigrating another person’s beliefs, we were encouraged to look into those different histories and cultures to learn something new. Later in life, I began to wonder, “Maybe there is an even more integrative way to see history, culture and belief systems. Maybe there is higher ground?”
So, I have engaged Dennett, Harris, Dawkins and Hitchens over the years. My most recent correspondence to each of them is linked from their names just below the image. My last note to Christopher Hitchens was in 2010.
Sometime in 2012 I began to realize that our Big Board-little universe project had an implicit cosmology so I began to study the current issues within cosmology. It slowly began to appear to be a cosmological model that just might address the problems in historic models at the same time it encourages a certain respect for the legacies of all the prior cosmological belief systems.
Saturday, February 3, 2018 at 8 AM: In We opened the door on a model and chart that uses a simple doubling of the Planck base units and goes to the Age of the Universe in 202 steps. The closest thing to it was a base-10 model done in 1957 by Kees Boeke that takes you from the small-scale universe to the large-scale in 40 steps. You may remember an online tour, Scale of the Universe, by the Huang twins. It even became an IMAX movie at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. In 2014 Gerard ‘t Hooft and Stefan Vandoren wrote a definitive base-10 book.
Base-2 and base-10 model are exponential progressions; both reflect Euler’s equation. Yet, base-2 replicates the doubling functions within biology and the bifurcating functions of dynamical systems (especially within mathematics). But it wasn’t until we thought about the fact that logically, the chart includes everything, everywhere, throughout all time, did we begin to think of it as a cosmological model.
The chart does raise simple but explicit questions:
- How could spacetime be derivative and not absolute? Here’s an overview of the models.
- Are the Planck base units the right place to begin?
- What is fundamental to our logic and to the logic of the universe?
- What is mathematics? What is logic? What is order? What is continuity?
- Why is there symmetry? Why is there harmony?
- What is infinite?
- Are dimensionless fundamental constants infinite because they are non-ending and never-repeating? What is the source? From where do those numbers originate?
- Whereas the big bang is nihilist and ultimately dystopian, is there a model for a baseline of human interactions within the cosmological order?