Monday, April 24, 2017
Alternate Realities and the Creation of Universes
Ethan Jakes - Section 10
The idea of a multiverse, the existence of multiple universes parallel to our own, could be real and we could never know. The origin and creation of our universe is a debate that will always be discussed. I will not discuss the origins of our universe, but of the ongoing existence that we have in it. The multiverse theory states that there are parallel universes to our own, much like a family tree, events separate from the trunk through decisions that we make, and could even be caused by the acts of a single person. If this theory is true, we would never know it. Douglas Adams speaks of this in the fifth book of his fantastic series, Mostly Harmless:
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy has, in what we laughingly call the past, had a great deal to say on the subject of parallel universes. Very little of this is, however, at all comprehensible to anyone below the level of Advanced God, and since it is now well established that all known gods came into existence a good three millionths of a second after the Universe began rather than, as they usually claimed, the previous week, they already have a great deal of explaining to do as it is, and are therefore not available for comment on the matters of deep physics at this time.
One encouraging thing that the Guide does have to say on the subject of parallel universes is that you don’t stand the remotest chance of understanding it. You can therefore say “What?” and “Eh?” and even go cross-eyed and start to blither if you like without any fear of making a fool of yourself.
The first thing to realize about parallel universes, the Guide says, is that they are not parallel.
It is also important to realize that they are not, strictly speaking, universes either, but it is easiest if you don’t try to realize that until a little later, after you’ve realized that everything you’ve realized up to that moment is not true.
The reason they are not universes is that any given universe is not actually a thing as such, but is just a way of looking at what is technically known as the WSOGMM, of Whole Sort of General Mish Mash. The Whole Sort of General Mish Mash doesn’t actually exist either, but is just the sum total of all the different ways there would be of looking at it if it did.
The reason they are not parallel is the same reason that the sea is not parallel. It doesn’t mean anything. You can slice the Whole Sort of General Mish Mash any way you like and you will generally come up with something that someone will call home.
Please feel free to blither now.
If you have not read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy I highly suggest that you do. The concept of parallel universes is often used is science fiction. It will not be taken as a reasonable theory until there is proof of its existence, but the only way to do that is to, if the theory is true, escape this universe and enter one that is very similar but not quite the same as the one you were currently in. You would have to notice the difference, and somehow make it back to your original universe to report it. That sounds hard, but if we follow the same logic as the existence of a parallel universe, then we can say that we create them.
Books, such as The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and The Lord of the Rings and any other you can imagine, are universes created by the author. The author creates a universe for the characters, and as the story progresses and gets more complicated, so does the universe that has been created. If you accept that we do create universes, would that not make authors gods? I could say that “Alice went to the store to buy apples”. Have I created a universe in which Alice goes to a store and purchases apples? Probably not. It is, however, food for thought.