In your kitchen cabinet, you’ve probably got a spray bottle with an adjustable nozzle. If you twist the nozzle one way, it sprays a fine mist into the air. You twist the nozzle the other way, it squirts a jet of water in a straight line. You turn that nozzle to the exact position you want so you can wash a mirror, clean up a spill, or whatever.
If the universe had expanded a little faster, the matter would have sprayed out into space like fine mist from a water bottle – so fast that a gazillion particles of dust would speed into infinity and never even form a single star.
If the universe had expanded just a little slower, the material would have dribbled out like big drops of water, then collapsed back where it came from by the force of gravity.
A little too fast, and you get a meaningless spray of fine dust. A little too slow, and the whole universe collapses back into one big black hole.
The surprising thing is just how narrow the difference is. To strike the perfect balance between too fast and too slow, the force, something that physicists call “the Dark Energy Term” had to be accurate to one part in ten with 120 zeros.
If you wrote this as a decimal, the number would look like this:
In their paper “Disturbing Implications of a Cosmological Constant” two atheist scientists from Stanford University stated that the existence of this dark energy term would have required a miracle… “An unknown agent” intervened in cosmic history “for reasons of its own.”
Just for comparison, the best human engineering example is the Gravity Wave Telescope, which was built with a precision of 23 zeros. The Designer, the ‘external agent’ that caused our universe must possess an intellect, knowledge, creativity and power trillions and trillions of times greater than we humans have.
Now a person who doesn’t believe in God has to find some way to explain this. One of the more common explanations seems to be “There was an infinite number of universes, so it was inevitable that things would have turned out right in at least one of them.”
The “infinite universes” theory is truly an amazing theory. Just think about it, if there is an infinite number of universes, then absolutely everything is not only possible… It’s actually happened!
It means that somewhere, in some dimension, there is a universe where the Chicago Cubs won the World Series last year. There’s a universe where Jimmy Hoffa doesn’t get cement shoes; instead he marries Joan Rivers and becomes President of the United States. There’s even a universe where Elvis kicks his drug habit and still resides at Graceland and sings at concerts. Imagine the possibilities!
I might sound like I’m joking, but actually I’m dead serious. To believe an infinite number of universes made life possible by random chance is to believe everything else I just said, too.
Some people believe in God with a capital G.
And some folks believe in Chance with a Capital C.
Tomorrow’s installment: “If you can read this email, I can prove to you that God exists.” Sound a little bold? Tune in tomorrow – same time, same station.