Part 1 of 2: Eternality and Creation

Posted By Thomas Perez. December 29, 2011 at 11:56pm. Copyright 2011.

In This Article I Will Cover 10 Categories Pertaining to the Issue of Eternality & Creation. They Are As Follows:

1. Argument From the Nature of Matter

2. Argument From Possibility

3. Argument From Motion

4. Argument From the Nature of Time

5. Argument From the Vacuum

6. Ways of Interpretation Pertaining to Creation

Church Historians on Allegorical Interpretation of Genesis

7. Ancient Christian Interpretations

Finding Allegory In History

8. Days of Creation

9. Rabbinic Teachings

10. According to Gerald Schroeder

And my own conclusion to these things.

The First 5 Categories Are Covered Here In Part 1. The Last 5 – Will Be Covered In Part 2.

Argument From the Nature of Matter

From Aristotle

According to Aristotle, the nature of matter, made by him in the Physics, proceeds as follows:

“Everything that comes into existence does so from a substratum. If the underlying matter of the universe came into existence, it would come into existence from a substratum. But the nature of matter is precisely to be the substratum from which other things arise. Consequently, the underlying matter of the universe could have come into evidence only from an already existing matter exactly like itself; to assume that the underlying matter of the universe came into existence would require assuming that an underlying matter already existed. The assumption is thus self-contradictory, and matter must be eternal.”

The key premise of the argument is, clearly, that everything that comes into existence does so from a substratum. Aristotle defends this argument inductively as follows:

“We can,” he argued, “always observe something underlying, from which the generated object comes, plants and animals, for example, coming from seed.” Aristotle in Metaphysics

substratum, is a term in metaphysics which literally means the “underlying thing” According to Aristotle’s definition (in Categories), hypokeimenon (Greek word for substance) is something which can be predicated by other things, but cannot be a predicate of others.

In Contrast to Aristotle, we have Maimonides

Moses ben Maimon [known to English speaking audiences as Maimonides and Hebrew speaking as Rambam] (1138–1204) is the greatest Jewish philosopher of the medieval period and is still widely read today. The Mishneh Torah, his 14-volume compendium of Jewish law, established him as the leading rabbinic authority of his time and quite possibly of all time. His philosophic masterpiece, the Guide of the Perplexed, is a sustained treatment of Jewish thought and practice that seeks to resolve the conflict between religious knowledge and secular. Although heavily influenced by the Neo-Platonized Aristotelianism that had taken root in Islamic circles, it departs from prevailing modes of Aristotelian thought by emphasizing the limits of human knowledge and the questionable foundations of significant parts of astronomy and metaphysics. Maimonides also achieved fame as a physician and wrote medical treatises on a number of diseases and their cures. Succeeding generations of philosophers wrote extensive commentaries on his works, which influenced thinkers as diverse as Aquinas, Spinoza, Leibniz, and Newton.

Throughout the Guide, Maimonides considers four accounts of creation: that of the kalam, Moses, Plato, and Aristotle. He rejects the kalam account (GP 1. 71–73) in which accordingly which one demonstrates that the universe must have been created and then reasons that if it was created, it must have a creator. Like Thomas Aquinas, Maimonides believes it is impossible to show by logical considerations alone either that the universe was created or that it is eternal. Though Maimonides says he believes in creation, he admits one can do no more than tip the scales in this direction. As of Guide 2.13, he limits his discussion to the theories of Moses, Plato, and Aristotle.

Unfortunately Maimonides’ characterizations of these alternatives are neither precise nor historically accurate [Seeskin, 2005]. Suffice it to say that his treatment of them is mainly thematic. Briefly stated, they are:

Moses:  the world was created de novo and entirely ex nihilo.

Plato:    the world was created de novo from a preexisting material substrate.

Aristotle:  the world is eternal and its existence is best understood as eternal information of matter.

Based on his explicit remarks, Maimonides prefers the theory of Moses but allows one to hold that of Plato as a reasonable alternative. But there has always been a school of thought that maintains that he is secretly committed to the view of Aristotle [Harvey 1981]. My own position is with those who argue that Maimonides’ explicit remarks are an accurate account of his view and that all the arguments he offers point in that direction [Davidson 1979; Feldman 1990; Hyman 1988; Wolfson 1973.

Moreover, Maimonides challenged the inductive assertion on that “everything in existence comes from a substratum,” on that basis his reliance on induction and analogy is a fundamentally flawed means of explaining unobserved phenomenon. According to Maimonides, to argue that “because I have never observed something coming into  existence without coming from a substratum it cannot occur” is equivalent to arguing that “because I cannot empirically observe eternity it does not exist.”

The historical Aristotle did argue that the world is eternal and that whatever is eternal is necessary [On Generation and Corruption 338a1–4, Physics 203b 29, Metaphysics 1050b8–15]. His medieval followers took this to mean that while the world is ontologically dependent on God, there is no moment when it first comes to be and therefore does not owe its existence to a decision to create. As we might say, it exists not because of anything God does but simply because of what God is. Because God’s nature does not change, according to this position, neither does the existence or fundamental structure of the world. However, if one was to hold to this position as the absolute, then one must also consider one of the most important consequences of this view, “God does not exercise free choice”, which is to say that according to the Aristotelian alternative, the world is governed by necessity.

Maimonides is aware that all his arguments establish is the possibility of creation, not its actuality. To go further, and argue for the actuality of creation, he returns to the claim that everything that is eternal is necessary. If it could be shown that there are features of the world that are not necessary, it would follow that the world must have been created. Here Maimonides challenges Aristotle and his followers on the issue of astronomy.

Medieval Aristotelians believed as follows. God thinks and manifests self-awareness. Because God is one and simple, what emerges from God must be one and simple as well. In this way, God generates the first heavenly intelligence. According to Alfarabi, because the first intelligence is aware of two things — itself and God — it is capable of generating two things: the second heavenly intelligence and the outermost sphere of the universe. By contrast, Avicenna held that because the first intelligence is aware of God and duality in itself, it generates three things. The difference need not concern us here. The important point is that God’s production of the outermost sphere is indirect; the immediate cause is the activity of the first intelligence. The process continues until we get the ten intelligences and nine primary spheres that make up the standard picture of medieval cosmology.

Maimonides criticizes this account in two ways. First if the originator of a causal sequence is one and simple, there is no way for complexity to arise, and everything else in the sequence should be one and simple as well (GP 2.22). Even if the sequence contains thousands of members, there is no way to account for the complexity of a celestial sphere, which is a composite of matter and form. When we get to the inner spheres, we have to account for even more because not only is there the sphere itself but the stars or planets attached to it. They too are composites of matter and form. How can we have such complexity if we start with something that is radically one?

Second, there are features of the heavenly bodies that defy scientific explanation and thus appear to be contingent in the sense that they were chosen rather than necessitated (GP 2.19–24). If the outer spheres impart motion to the inner ones, we would expect spherical motion to slow as we move closer to the earth. But this is hardly the case. As Maimonides points out (GP 2.19):

We see that in case of some spheres, the swifter of motion is above the slower; that in the case of others, the slower of motion is above the swifter; and that, again in another case, the motions of the spheres are of equal velocity though one be above the other. There are also other very grave matters if regarded from the point of view these things are as they are in virtue of necessity.

If there is no explanation for why the spheres behave in this fashion, or why some stars and planets emit more light than others, or why some regions of the heavens are relatively crowded while others are empty, there is no reason to think the phenomena in question are what they are by virtue of necessity. If there is no necessity, there are no grounds for eternity. The alternative is to say that God created the world as a result of a free choice and fashioned it in a particular way.

Maimonides recognizes (GP 2.24) that his argument does not constitute a demonstration. Just because science cannot explain something now, it does not follow that it will never be able to explain it. As he himself admits, science can and does make progress. But in the case of the heavenly bodies, he thought progress very unlikely. Because they too far away to make close observations, and too high in rank, we can only rely on inferences based on accidental qualities size, speed, and direction. As long as this is true, we will never know their essential natures and will never be able to support claims of necessity. As long as this is true, creation, though not demonstrated, will always be preferable to eternity.

Maimonides (GP 2.25) also offers a practical reason for believing in creation: How can a God without free will issue commandments? Beyond this there is a textual reason: belief in creation does less violence to scripture than belief in eternity. He concludes that the theory of Moses offers the best alternative, while that of Plato, which retains the idea of creation de novo, is acceptable. Though some people fault Maimonides for not coming up with a stronger argument on behalf of Moses, he would reply by saying that given the limits of our knowledge, this is the strongest argument we can expect. Although Maimonides is often seen as part of the Aristotelian tradition, and often expresses praise for Aristotle, his account of creation indicate that he is willing to depart from Aristotle when he thinks the arguments lead in that direction.

On Maimonides it can be said, based on his philosophy, he was a Apophatic Theologian – also know as Negative Theology – that is to say, it is a theology that attempts to describe God, the Divine Good, by negation, to speak only in terms of what may not be said about the perfect goodness that is God. (Nicholas Bunnin  and Jiyuan Yu. “Negative Theology : The Blackwell Dictionary of Western Philosophy : Blackwell Reference Online”.

For instance, one should not say that God exists in the usual sense of the term; all we can safely say is that God is not non-existent. We should not say that “God is wise”; but we can say that “God is not ignorant,” i.e. in some way, God has some properties of knowledge. We should not say that “God is One,” but we can state that “there is no multiplicity in God’s being.” In brief, the attempt is to gain and express knowledge of God by describing what God is not; rather than by describing what God “is.”

Maimonides’ use of Apophatic Theology (negative theology) is not unique to this time period or to Judaism. For example, Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite and Maximus the Confessor, Eastern Christian theologians, developed apophatic theology for Christianity nearly 900 years earlier.

Others include: Clement of Alexandria, Gregory of Nyssa, John Chrysostom, Basil the Great, and John of Damascus 

Negative theology played an important role early in the history of Christianity, for example, in the works of Clement of Alexandria. Three more theologians who emphasized the importance of negative theology to an orthodox understanding of God were Gregory of Nyssa, John Chrysostom, and Basil the Great. John of Damascus employed it when he wrote that positive statements about God reveal “not the nature, but the things around the nature.” It continues to be prominent in Eastern Christianity (see Gregory Palamas). Apophatic statements are crucial to much modern theologians in Orthodox Christianity (see Vladimir Lossky, John Meyendorff, John S. Romanides and Georges Florovsky). Negative (Apophatic) Theology stands in contrast with Cataphatic Theology – Cataphatic Theology is the expressing of God or the divine through positive terminology – I.e. God is Eternal, God is Love, God is Good, God hath all Wisdom.

However, Aquinas summed it up best when he stated that positive and negative theology should be seen as dialetical correctives to each other, like thesis and antithesis producing a synthesis, Lossky argues, based on his reading of Dionysius and Maximus Confessor, that positive theology is always inferior to negative theology, a step along the way to the superior knowledge attained by negation. (Lossky, The Mystical Theology of the Eastern Church p. 9 & 26

This is expressed in the idea that mysticism is the expression of dogmatic theology par excellence. In other words – this form of mysticism can be encouraged to produce positive results as we know the meaning of the word.

Argument From Possibility

In the medieval Islamic world, due to Avicenna’s successful reconciliation between Aristotelianism and Neoplatonism along with Kalam, Avicennism eventually became the leading school of Islamic philosophy by the 12th century, with Avicenna becoming a central authority on philosophy.(Nahyan A. G. Fancy (2006), p. 80-81, “Pulmonary Transit and Bodily Resurrection: The Interaction of Medicine, Philosophy and Religion in the Works of Ibn al-Nafīs (d. 1288)”, Electronic Theses and Dissertati

Ibn Sīnā was a devout Muslim and sought to reconcile rational philosophy with Islamic theology. His aim was to prove the existence of God, His creation, and that of eternity, by means of the scientific and through reason/logic. (Lenn Evan Goodman (2003), Islamic Humanism, p. 8-9, Oxford University Press). Avicenna was born c. 980 in Afshana, near Bukhara, the capital of Samanids, a Persian dynasty in Central Asia and Greater Khorasan.

Avicenna’s believed that existence must, therefore, be due to an agent-cause that necessitates, imparts, gives, or adds existence to an essence. To do so, the cause must be an existing thing and coexist with its effect.

Christian Scholar, William Lane Craig advances an argument for the existence of God/the Eternal in The Kalam Cosmological Argument (London: Macmillan, 1979). In his book, Craig argues that since the universe began to exist, the efficient cause of the universe’s existence must have been God. His modern version of the kalam cosmological argument-first formulated by the Mutakallimun, the Muslim scholastics of the ninth century-rests on empirical arguments as well as a priori considerations that an actual infinite is impossible.1 Since an actual infinite is impossible, Craig argues, the universe must therefore be finite in time. In other words, the universe must have begun to exist.

Many commentators have insisted that these premises are unsound. Perhaps the most rigorous criticism has come from Quentin Smith (1988, 1994) who argues from quantum mechanical considerations that the universe could begin to exist without an efficient cause. Smith (1987) also argues that the kalam argument does not preclude the possibility of an infinite past. Craig (1991) reiterates that an actual infinite by successive addition is impossible and so the past cannot be infinite either. I shall argue that Craig’s conclusion is problematic and requires additional argumentation before the kalam argument successfully demonstrates that God is the efficient cause of the universe.

In reaching the conclusion to God as the universe’s cause, Craig relies upon the Muslim principle of determination, first argued by al-Juwayni in his Irshad and retold by Averroës. The principle of determination states that any being or effect requires a particularizer, a being who decides the course of an action between two likely choices (Wolfson 434-7). The universe may have been larger or smaller than it is, many billions of years older or younger, or it may have even failed to exist; any of these possibilities are admissible in that they are logically possible. With respect to the universe’s existence, Averroës states that “the admissible is created and it has a creator, namely, an agent, who out of two admissibility’s turns it into one rather than the other” (qtd. in Wolfson 437-8). Only a sentient being can make the choice to create the universe at the moment that it was created; the Creator could have created the universe an hour earlier or waited several days before doing so. As in Craig’s argument, al-Ghazali uses the argument from particularization in his Tahafut to state that the creation of the universe at that particular moment in time was the result of the determined will of the Creator (Wolfson 439).

Argument From Motion

In physics, motion is a change in position of an object with respect to time. Change in action is the result of an unbalanced force. Motion is typically described in terms of velocity, acceleration, displacement and time. Newton’s laws of motion are three physical laws that form the basis for classical mechanics:

1. First law: The velocity of a body remains constant unless the body is acted upon by an external force.

2. Second law: The acceleration a of a body is parallel and directly proportional to the net force F and inversely proportional to the mass m, i.e., F = ma.

3. Third law: The mutual forces of action and reaction between two bodies are equal, opposite and collinear.

A body which does not move is said to be at rest, motionless, immobile, stationary, or to have a constant (time-invariant) position. Howbeit, at this injunction I’m reminded of the Incarnation – in which what we call the Beginning and the End – the First and the Last, which by definition of the word phrase’s literally means, God had a beginning from our perspective. Yet on the same token as indicated above, God is Eternal, as expressed in the Torah, by the very definition of the name ‘I’AM’. For the I’AM became flesh – creation – and dwelt among the creation of Himself – which proceeded out of Him/Her to begin with. Therefore, the logic of the Incarnation is self explanatory as Jesus (the Logos) illustrated in proclaiming that the Kingdom of God is within you.

The phase’s “Christ in you”, “the Spirit in you”, etc; are mutual forces in action and reaction – thus two bodies – Man & God. Upon this injunction, some might accuse me of heresy, by claiming that such a belief entails multiple deities. This is far from the truth! God is not Man, Man is not God. But in the realm of time – God did become Man. And within this time frame, Man will become Sons and Daughters of God, howbeit, actual gods. For do we not have the same Spirit in us, as was in Christ Jesus – the Spirit of Truth? However, since we are mortals, given immortality (eternality), we can achieve Christ likeness, however, it would appear that we can never actually maintain its true attribute, due to the fact that something that was created out ex-nihilo can never truly be eternal, as we understand eternality to be; it is constantly changing Therefore, perhaps the mind that is in us – the conscience, the soul, the spirit, the mind of Christ, truly goes back to God/Christ Jesus, who gave it in the 1st cause. Thus after the ages, upon ages, we merge with the Creator – our eternality goes back to God; who alone inhabits eternality.

According to Aristotle:

If an absolute beginning of motion should be assumed, the object to undergo the first motion must either

1. Have come into existence and begun to move, or

2. Have existed in an eternal state of rest before beginning to move.

Aristotle argues that option 1 is self-contradictory because an object cannot move before it comes into existence, and the act of coming into existence is itself a “movement,” so that the first movement requires a movement before it, that is, the act of coming into existence.

Aristotle argues that option 2 is unsatisfactory for two reasons

1. If the world began at a state of rest, the coming into existence of that state of rest would itself have been motion.

2. If the world changed from a state of rest to a state of motion, the cause of that change to motion would itself have been a motion.

Aristotle concludes that motion is necessarily eternal.

Creationists responded that the “First motion” could be ascribed to God’s creative act (which would, of course, be transcendental and thus not necessarily physical in nature). Transcendence refers to the aspect of God’s nature which is wholly independent of (and removed from) the physical universe. This is contrasted with immanence where God is fully present in the physical world and thus accessible to creatures in various ways.

Argument From the Nature of Time

Aristotle proceeds along two lines:

1. Time must be eternal because to refer to a time “before” time began implies that there was time before time, making the concept self-contradictory.

2. the future and an end of the past.” The assumption of an absolutely first moment would consequently carry with it the implication of a period of time which is terminated by, and prior to, that first moment, and the prior time would itself contain moments. The assumption of an absolutely first moment is thus self-contradictory.

Creationists responded that the apparent contradiction is only in our imaginations, as the perceived necessity as time “before” time is merely due to our experience, and not anything essential about the universe. God could be beyond time, but the universe exhibit a definite beginning and ending of time.

Time as unreal

In 5th century BC Greece, Antiphon the Sophist, in a fragment preserved from his chief work On Truth held that: “Time is not a reality (hypostasis), but a concept (noêma) or a measure (metron).” Parmenides went further, maintaining that time, motion, and change were illusions, leading to the paradoxes of his follower Zeno. (1) Time as an illusion is also a common theme in Buddhist thought. (2 & 3)

J. M. E. McTaggart’s 1908 The Unreality of Time argues that, since every event has the characteristic of being both present and not present (i.e. future or past), that time is a self-contradictory idea (see also The flow of time).

These arguments often center around what it means for something to be “unreal”. Modern physicists generally consider time to be as “real” as space, though others such as Julian Barbour in his book The End of Time, argue that quantum equations of the universe take their true form when expressed in the timeless configuration spacerealm containing every possible “Now” or momentary configuration of the universe, which he terms ‘platonia’. (4)

1. Harry Foundalis. “You are about to disappear “

2. Huston, Tom. “Buddhism and the illusion of time”.

3. Garfield, Jay L. (1995). The fundamental wisdom of the middle way: Nāgārjuna’s Mūlamadhyamakakārikā. New York: Oxford University Press.

4. “Time is an illusion?”.


Time is divided into three distinct regions; the “past”, the “present”, and the “future”. Using that representational model, the past is generally seen as being immutably fixed, and the future as undefined and nebulous. As time passes, the moment that was once the present becomes part of the past; and part of the future, in turn, becomes the new present. In this way time is said to pass, with a distinct present moment “moving” forward into the future and leaving the past behind. This view of time is given the name presentism by philosophers.

This conventional model presents a number of difficult philosophical problems, and seems difficult to reconcile with currently accepted scientific theories such as the theory of relativity. The theory of relativity brings me to my next argument; the argument of eternalism.

The word Eternalism has at least three meanings:

1. In philosophy, Eternalism is a philosophical approach to the ontological nature of time, which takes the view that all points in time are equally “real”, as opposed to the presentist idea that only the present is real.

2. Eternalism is a position in phenomenology that the world must be seen as static and fixed. This worldview is in opposition to mobilism, which states that the world must be seen as in a constant state of flux. These worldviews are particularly relevant to paradoxology.

3. Eternalism is the common English translation of sassatavada, the doctrine of unchanging – being rejected by Buddhism.

Eternalism addresses these various difficulties by considering all points in time to be equally valid frames of reference—or equally “real”, if one prefers. It does not do away with the concept of past and future, but instead considers them directions rather than states of being; whether some point in time is in the future or past is entirely dependent on which frame of reference you are using as a basis for observing it.

Since an observer at any given point in time can only remember events that are in the past relative to him, and not events that are in the future relative to him, the subjective illusion of the passage of time is maintained. The asymmetry of remembering past events but not future ones, as well as other irreversible events that progress in only one temporal direction (such as the increase in entropy) gives rise to the arrow of time. In the view suggested by Eternalism, there is no passage of time; the ticking of a clock measures durations between events much as the marks on a measuring tape measures distances between places.

Eternalism may have implications for the concept of free will, in that it proposes that future events are as immutably fixed and impossible to change as past events (see my study on determinism). However as the human subject, and any free will they have, is also ‘present’ throughout time, during their life, they may be exercising free will in the ‘future’ as it were.

Eternalism makes two assumptions, which are separable. One is that time is a full-fledged real dimension. The other is immutability. The latter is not a necessary consequence of the first. A universe in which random changes are possible may be indistinguishable from the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics in which there are multiple “block times.” It will also be pointed out that according to the writings of the Canon (Bible) God is recorded as being immutable. Therefore, perhaps if this is the case; and I say “if”, then perhaps the Incarnation was always an accomplished fact. When God created man, God created man as an extension of eternality – thus giving him the ability to maintain his eternality by eating from the tree of life. Moreover, the apparent appearances of God as found within the concept of what many theologians call Christophnies (Christ appearance in the OT) before the other Incarnation in time as revealed in Jesus, when the Logos (mind) of God was revealed in Him (Jesus); may be understood as “Eternalism” – thus the harvest was ripe and ready to receive the Logos.

Augustine of Hippo wrote that God is outside of time—that time exists only within the created universe. Many theologians agree. On this view, God would perceive something like a block universe, while time might appear differently to us finite beings. Moreover, many theoretical physicists agree with the conceptual view of a blocked universe. The shape of the universe is a matter of debate.

Formally, the question of whether the universe is infinite or finite is whether it is an unbounded or bounded metric space. The Universe can be either:

1. An open or closed universe

(In an open universe, even without dark energy, a negatively curved universe expands forever, with gravity barely slowing the rate of expansion. With dark energy, the expansion not only continues but accelerates. The ultimate fate of an open universe is either universal heat death, the “Big Freeze”, or the “Big Rip”, where the acceleration caused by dark energy eventually becomes so strong that it completely overwhelms the effects of the gravitational, electromagnetic and weak binding forces).

(In a closed universe lacking the repulsive effect of dark energy, gravity eventually stops the expansion of the universe, after which it starts to contract until all matter in the universe collapses to a point, a final singularity termed the “Big Crunch”, by analogy with Big Bang. However, if the universe has a significant amount of dark energy that will be used as an infinite force, then the expansion of the universe can continue forever). Many found within mainstream Christianity would agree with the latter, due to the possibility of an ever expanding universe due to its dark matter. It should also be noted that dark matter constitutes as much as 83% of the universe.

2. A Flat universe (A flat universe can have zero total energy and thus can come from nothing) Absent dark energy, a flat universe expands forever but at a continually decelerating rate, with expansion asymptotically approaching a fixed rate. With dark energy, the expansion rate of the universe initially slows down, due to the effect of gravity, but eventually increases. The ultimate fate of the universe is the same as an open universe.

3. A Spherical universe (Same as a closed universe). If the Universe is contained within an ever expanding sphere (which may have started from a single point) it can still appear infinite for all practical purposes. Because of length contraction the galaxies further away, which are traveling away from the observer the fastest, will appear smaller. In this way an infinite Universe fits within a finite sphere as long as the sphere is expanding continually.

I would assume that this is the preposition taken by mainstream Christianity, since it describes some interpretations of Christianity as predicting the end of life on Earth (but not the end of the whole universe), with other interpretations only predicting the end of corruption on Earth, while human life continues in a paradise. Other religions, such as Islam and Zoroastrianism, believe in a single universe-ending event.

Others, notably Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism, believe in an unending cycle of apocalyptic destruction and re-creation of the universe. Some theists do not view the various scientific theories about the end of the universe as contradicting their religious beliefs.

4. A Hyperbolic universe

Argument From the Vacuum

The Vacuum genesis is another word for (Zero-energy universe). It is a hypothesis about the Big Bang that states that the universe began as a single particle arising from an absolute vacuum, similar to how virtual particles come into existence and then fall back into non-existence.

The concept of vacuum genesis was first proposed in 1969 during a seminar being conducted by cosmologist Dennis Sciama. Edward Tryon, in the audience, was seized by an idea and blurted “Maybe the universe is a vacuum fluctuation.” This was treated as a joke at the time, but Tryon hadn’t been joking. In a 1984 interview, Tryon recalled that three years later, sitting at home, he had a further revelation; “I visualized the universe erupting out of nothing as a quantum fluctuation and I realized that it was possible that it explained the critical density of the universe.”

A vacuum is a volume of space that is essentially empty of matter. Aristotle argued that a “vacuum” is impossible. Material objects can come into existence only in place, that is, occupy space. Were something to come from nothing, “the place to be occupied by what comes into existence would previously have been occupied by a vacuum, inasmuch as no body existed.” But a vacuum is impossible, and matter must be eternal.

Creationists responded that God created the dimensions at the same time he created the matter, so there was no vacuum before there was matter.

Moreover, there is a explanation pertaining to the concept of the vacuum, unknown to Aristotle at the time, it is called Dark Matter. In astronomy and cosmology, dark matter is matter that neither emits nor scatters light or other electromagnetic radiation, and so cannot be directly detected via optical or radio astronomy.(1) And as mentioned earlier, dark matter is believed to constitute 83% of the matter in the universe.(2)

1. Mark J Hadley (2007) “Classical Dark Matter

2. Hinshaw, Gary F. (January 29, 2010). “What is the universe made of?”

The Final Part (Part 2) Will Be Continued in a Second Study.

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