Birth Death Destruction Creation: Universe & God
Our universe leaves fingerprints. We can look back in time at space and conduct theories of how the universe started. Stephen Hawking, one of the most famous physicists and cosmologists, agreed. He proved that the Big Bang Theory marked the beginning of the universe and that there is no God. Lucretius, a famous philosopher, also spoke against the religious view of cosmology. Our universe was formed by the Big Bang and consists of tiny atoms or so-called ‘fixed seeds,’ and our composition is focused on nature and science.
There is no origin of the universe. There was a point in time where it expanded as Hawking mentions in the 'Origin and Fate of the Universe.' This is the big bang theory, which suggests that the universe had zero size and was infinitely hot. After a while, the universe started to gradually cool and expanded which produced the first nuclei of atoms. After further cooling galaxies and stars were formed. “Gradually, some of these stars depleted their supply of hydrogen; this then caused them to contract and to begin converting helium into heavier elements, such as carbon and oxygen. When this process was completed, some of these stars further contracted, eventually producing a condition in which their center collapsed into a very dense state and their outer regions were blown off by a tremendous explosion” (164 Hawking). After these explosions they left material for lateral generations of stars and heavier elements formed planets, like our Earth. Even though Hawking states that the universe had zero size before the big bang, it didn’t mean that it was the start of the universe. The universe has no beginning and will have no end and Hawking later explains saying, “space-time was finite but had no boundary” (165 Hawking). This means that there was no beginning and that the universe always existed in some kind of form.
The general view of reality and the nature of the universe is all constituted of atoms or ‘tiny seeds.’ Atoms are material substances and everything in nature consists of these tiny, invisible, solid particles. Lucretius in ‘On the Nature of Things’ says that, “these indestructible seeds or atoms, which are constantly moving through the void or space, are conjoined with each other” (201 Lucretius). This conjoining is called ‘mutual entanglement’ and this happens to shape everything we see. Our reality is based on nature and not religion because nature is orderly and foreseeable. Religion and God are unreliable and inconsistent, which is not how the universe operates. You see this further in death or destruction, “occurs when these entangled seeds encounter a force strong enough to disentangle them. Since the seeds themselves cannot be destroyed they fly off through space, until they become mutually entangled again, thereby becoming part of another visible object” (201 Lucretius).
This is reliable to science because energy cannot be destroyed it is only transferred to other objects. Furthermore, humans can be destroyed which results in their death and the end of their existence. Additionally, in nature, we also see creation and destruction. Hawking talks about evolution, “the earth was initially very hot and without an atmosphere. In the course of time it cooled and acquired an atmosphere from the emission of gases from the rocks” (168 Hawking). Our Earth has developed so much and so have the animals on it, “In this way, a process of evolution was started that led to the development of more and more complicated, self-reproducing organisms.
The first primitive forms of life consumed various materials, including hydrogen sulfide, and released oxygen. This gradually changed the atmosphere to the composition that it has today and allowed the development of higher forms of life such as fish, reptiles, mammals, and ultimately the human race” (168 Hawking). We have evolved so much and have proof from observing the fossils of past animals and of our very distant ancestors. As organisms, we have to learn to better adapt to the environment that we live in. We use nature to our advantage and animals have shaped so much of our Earth. As said in the ‘The Origin of Disease and Medicine,’ by the Cherokees “animals are the ones who created disease against humans and plants were the treatment.” We see this in our daily life, as we have just lived during a pandemic, that animals do cause diseases such as the Bird Flu, Black Plague, Bubonic Plague, and many more. We also see that many types of medicinal plants can help cure sicknesses and many of the drugs we use today are derived from plants.
This view greatly affects the general view of reality because it shows the beginning of everything and how we as humans have evolved. This can help with the many philosophical questions that are still left unanswered. If we understand how the universe began then we can see how the nature of reality and philosophy intertwine. Since many philosophers talk about soul and religious arguments this view of cosmology and reality can help them shape their outlook to a different angle. My view of nature and reality and my view of cosmology guide each other to a conclusion. They both involve the scientific aspects that include how the universe started and what everything is made up of which are atoms or so-called ‘tiny seeds.’ Moreover, the science behind evolution helps direct how disease and medicine work. This could also help resolve many issues related to reality, such as, how the disease works and if there is a soul.
One philosopher, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, argued against the main ideas of the atoms or the ‘tiny seeds. ’ He agrees that the universe also consists of simple substances similar to atoms but this counterargument says that these atoms or ‘Monads’ are spiritual instead of material and that no external force can affect them and it must be affected from within. His view of atoms is one from a religious perspective and thinks that everything has some type of level of awareness. He also argues that everything that happens in this universe has a reason which ties back into his argument of there is a God. In reality, everything that happens in this universe is spontaneous.
When he allows the existence of God to be the ‘cause’ for everything then he is contradicting himself because it would not make sense in that you cannot have a cause for everything but not a cause for God. Additionally, evolution shows explanations for this in science with variation and the natural selection process. God did not design these but over thousands and millions of years of evolution, certain things were retained or eliminated depending on their effectiveness.
There was never a starting point for the universe but we are able to trace back past events that have happened. Our reality is mainly based on the nature of our world and from science we have developed through evolution. We can see this with fossils, the evolution of medicine, and where it is derived from. Humans have advanced greatly and will continue to do so, which will lead to further advancement toward our understanding of cosmology and ontology.