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From the Editor
Who Created God?
By: David Deschesne
Editor/Publisher, Fort Fairfield Journal
In the last edition, FFJ class member William Langman asked the intriguing question; “Who created God?”
Most pastors would answer with one of the four verses in the Book of Revelation which indicate God saying he is the “Alpha and Omega” - the first and last, the beginning and end; which is, which was and which is to come. Or, they may resort to the answer to Moses in the book of Exodus; “I am.” These Biblical verses indicate God always was in existence, even before time began. He had no creator.
That’s the short answer and for most, it does just fine. For some people, such as me, however, there is a degree of fascination in the conceptual dynamics of those verses and a longing to understand their fundamentals more deeply. With that said, I will now attempt to boil down some relatively heavy concepts in physics –as I understand them—in an effort to explain just how something can always have existed even before the creation and the universe.
Causality is the basic premise of logic. A causes B which causes C. Everything that happens in the time/space realm has a cause preceding it. For example, a fuse is lit, it burns and dynamite explodes; a seed is planted, it germinates, sprouts and bears fruit; or a key is inserted into an ignition, it is turned and a car engine starts idling. Everything here has a cause preceding it in logical order, flowing through the dimension of time.
The Creation is infinitely more complex than any of the aforementioned causes and effects. From cellular mechanics, to replicating DNA strands to the intricate balance of powers that make up the Earth, our solar system and Universe, any reasonable person, who ponders with a rational mind at the high degree of complexity that surrounds us on a daily basis, where entropy is the rule, would have to conclude there must have been a prior, intelligent cause to all of these effects we witness. Due to the level of intricacy and the fundamentals governing the existence of the universe, I believe that cause to be a supernatural being who had to exist prior to and outside of the physical realm. So, if we presume a Divine Being was the proximate cause of all that is, who or what could have logically created Him? Let’s wind the clock backwards to the very beginning of our universe to elucidate how and why God was permanently existing before it all began.
The Big Bang
A theory of the origin of our universe that is becoming increasingly validated by scientific observation is what’s known as the “Big Bang”.
The Big Bang theory attempts to explain why our universe is expanding—with all galaxies and star clusters moving away from each other as indicated by the red shifting of their spectral lines. With the discovery of the cosmic microwave background noise in the 1960’s and the subsequent discovery of it being isotropic throughout the universe; as well as the universe’s temperature being homogeneously pegged at 2.7 degrees Kelvin, scientists are concluding that the universe must have started out extremely small—a sub-atomic point and expanded outward in all directions as it continues to do today.
Cosmic microwave background radiation is a result of light waves originating from the original Big Bang being stretched out as space is expanded like a balloon. Light waves start out at around 430 terahertz, then have their wavelengths stretched out in an expanding universe the same way a police siren moving away from you has a lower pitch. As space expands and stretches the light wave out a lower frequency will result. The frequency range below light is microwave and is expressed in gigahertz.
This cosmic microwave background noise is isotropic—that is, it has the same properties and occurs in the same amounts and level in all directions, no matter where you observe it in the universe. Also, the heat of the universe, 2.7 degrees Kelvin is homogeneous, which means it’s the same everywhere—sort of like when you stir milk in coffee, it eventually becomes perfectly mixed.
Because heat and microwaves move at the speed of light and no faster, and the Universe is at least 30 billion light years in diameter, but only around 15 billion years old, heat and microwave radiation moving at the speed of light would not have had enough time to evenly disperse themselves throughout it. The only way that energy could have been made uniform throughout the vastness of space is if space at one time was small enough for the energy to mix evenly throughout it.
“If the universe did begin at a singularity from which matter appeared with infinite density and temperature, then we are confronted with a number of problems in our attempts to push cosmology any further. ‘What’ determines the sort of universe that emerges? If space and time do not exist before that singular beginning, how do we account for the laws of gravitation, or of logic, or mathematics? Did they exist ‘before’ the singularity? If so—and we seem to grant as much when we apply mathematics and logic to the singularity itself—then we must admit to a rationality larger than the material universe.”1
That rationality—the “First Cause” of the universe—is the starting point for understanding how a supernatural creator existed prior to the creation of time.
Gravitational Time Dilation
The ancient philosopher, Aristotle thought time was linear and exactly the same for every observer, no matter where they were or how fast they were moving. As scientists have now observed, that conclusion was incorrect. In order to understand how a Creator can exist forever, outside of the time domain, we must first understand some of the attributes of time.
We have height, width and depth in our familiar three dimensional realm. The fourth dimension is time. Time, however, is not uniform throughout the universe, or even here on Earth. Time is sped up or slowed down as perceived by two observers moving at different speeds compared to each other, or at different proximity to gravity that is induced by mass. Clear as mud? Let me break it down for you.
An atomic clock at sea level ticks a fraction of a second slower than one placed on top of the mile-high Mount Katahdin, here in Maine. The further away from the Earth’s gravity one goes, the faster that clock will tick in relation to the one observed at sea level. Extrapolated further, as gravity decreases, time speeds up proportionally, when compared to an observer’s timepiece in a gravitational field. This is called Gravitational Time Dilation and is a rule throughout the known universe.
“Another prediction of general relativity is that time should appear to run slower near a massive body like the earth. This is because there is a relation between the energy of light and its frequency (that is, the number waves of light per second): the greater the energy, the higher the frequency. As light travels upward in the earth’s gravitational field, it loses energy, and so its frequency goes down (This means that the length of time between one wave crest and the next goes up.) To someone high up, it would appear that everything down below was taking longer to happen. This prediction was tested in 1962, using a pair of very accurate clocks mounted at the top and bottom of a water tower. The clock at bottom, which was nearer the earth, was found to run slower, in exact agreement with general relativity.”2
In Starlight and Time, Dr. Russell Humphreys, Ph.D. uses a hypothetical example of two astronauts and the gravitational field of a black hole to illustrate Gravitational Time Dilation. One astronaut stays well outside the black hole’s immense gravitational field while the other falls into it—both observing each other’s timepieces while in vastly divergent gravitational fields; “The astronaut is scheduled to reach the event horizon [of the black hole] at 12:00 noon, as measured by his watch. As he falls toward it, a dark sphere blocking off the starry background, an astronomer watching him from far away sees that the astronaut’s watch is ticking slower and slower. By the astronomer’s wall clock, it takes an hour for the astronaut’s watch to go from 11:57 am to 11:58. And then a day to reach 11:59! The astronomer never does see the astronaut’s watch reach 12:00. Instead, he sees the motionless images of the astronaut and his watch getting redder and dimmer, finally fading from view completely.” Humphreys then describes the view from the astronaut looking back at the astronomer. “As the astronaut approaches the event horizon, he looks back through binoculars at the astronomer’s wall clock and sees it running faster and faster. He sees the astronomer moving rapidly around the laboratory like a video in fast-forward. He sees planets and stars moving very rapidly in their orbits. The whole universe far away from him is moving at a frenzied pace, aging rapidly. Yet the astronaut sees that his own watch is ticking normally. When his watch reaches 12:00 noon, the astronaut sees the hands of the astronomer’s wall clock moving forward so fast they are just a blur.”3
Time, and our perception of it, is just an illusion. Einstein showed all mass is really just energy in a “solidified” form. As energy, mass starts off moving at the speed of light. It then slows down as it solidifies and assumes a physical form in mass, having some of its speed diverted into forward motion in the physical realm. “If an object is sitting still (relative to us) and consequently does not move through space at all...then all of the object’s motion is used to travel through one dimension—in this case, the time dimension...If an object does move through space, however, this means that some of the previous motion through time must be diverted.”4
I theorize the dimension of time is a result of the fabric of space in our Universe expanding. Mass creates gravitational warps in space which slow down that expansion locally, resulting in a slowing of time. If there were no physical mass to slow down time, or expanding space to cause the seconds to tick by in the first place, there would be no time—no before or after, no beginning or end. In a mass-less, gravity-less, timeless realm there is a singularity, a paradox, with the past, present and future all occurring at once. That is the realm where the Super Consciousness, God exists. Atheists struggle with this concept of a deity existing outside of time and space because the only tools in their academic toolbox are reason and logic—tools that only work in the four dimensions of space-time. Reason and logic break down in the quantum world—a world with no mass, no expansion and no gravity causing a time singularity paradox.
It is theorized that back when the universe was compressed down to smaller than the size of a single atom, there was no mass and no gravity (not to mention no space expansion) because the extremely high states of energy caused all the particles to be essentially miniature photons of light, all bouncing around at light speed. In his book, Perfect Symmetry, Heinz Pagels explains, “First, the quantum particles produced, while each has a characteristic rest mass, may be treated as if they were mass-less—just like the photons—once the temperature of the universe is significantly greater than that rest mass-energy. The reason one may make this useful approximation is that the particles are moving so rapidly at high temperature that almost all their energy is in their kinetic energy of motion and not their rest mass-energy. Effectively, material particles become like radiation—mass-less, and moving at the speed of light.”5
“In the theory of relativity there is no unique absolute time, but instead each individual has his own personal measure of time that depends on where he is and how he is moving.”6
Prior to the existence of that infinitesimally small point particle of energy that was the origination of the universe and subsequently, space and time, there had to be something existing outside of its realm other than energy or mass, but still possessed intelligence to form from the energy and mass in the universe all of the complexities of balance, power and life that we observe and experience today. That entity existing outside of the realm of time and space would then have to be timeless since time as a dimension did not exist prior to the origination of the Universe. Because there is no time, there would be no logic flow of cause and effect; thus, God existing in that realm would have had no creator—there would have been no “before”—He would have been permanently existing just as the Bible indicates. That realm God exists in is a state described by the Hebrew word o-lawm’; translated as “everlasting” in English.
If you were to look down an incredibly deep hole in the ground, you would notice there will be a point that seems to vanish into nothingness. That is the vanishing point. It is quite likely the hole goes down further, still, but you simply are not able to see past the vanishing point. The area beyond the vanishing point is what encompasses the rich meaning of the Hebrew word עולם (o-lawm’). עולם is translated by the King James translators in numerous verses as: “everlasting,” and once as “eternal.”
The essence of עולם is beyond the vanishing point of a bottomless pit. It is also used poetically to refer to the horizon at dawn, just before the sun rises. It also means ‘eternity,’ ‘forever,’ ‘perpetual,’ and ‘time out of mind.’
It has been shown that time goes slower when near a large massive object (such as the earth) and as one moves away from the mass, time moves more quickly. When we sleep, the perceptive side of our “self” - the soul, or consciousness - is temporarily disentangled from the mass that is our body, and that of the earth. Being away from mass and the effects of gravity, time seems to travel much more quickly, that is why eight hours of sleep sometimes is only perceived as a very short time once you awaken, as compared to the same amount of time if you were sitting in a room wide awake.
Being separated from mass, God operates in that non-time arena, the עולם . Because God exists outside of the material realm, and is not affected by the forces masses exert on each other called gravity, He is not subjected to time. עולם usually means a point in the distant future, but can also mean, at times, the past. God was there before the beginning and after the end, but to Him it is happening all at once; a paradox our material-based, finite brains are not equipped to understand.
The Super Consciousness
If God is not a physical being constrained by the physical, material realm and locked into the passage of our perception of time, then what could He be?
The Bible describes God as the “Holy Spirit” - a part of the Trinity. The Spirit, which is the Supreme Consciousness, or Divine Mind, does not have physical form, does not occupy cyclical waveforms as three dimensional energy waves do and thus cannot be a created thing. Rather, as a consciousness—and a highly intelligent one at that— God just “is,” always has been and always will be. He indicated as much when He told Moses His name: “I am that I am.”7 In the original Hebrew, “I am” is translated from the verb היה, meaning to be. “‘I am’ is a statement of awareness witnessing that the capacity for experience is independent of form.”8
Consciousness is an abstract noun. Like its offspring, happiness, anger, love and hate, it is something one can have but is not a tangible form that can be perceived by the physical senses. While consciousness itself cannot be empirically and objectively proven to exist, its effects as manifested in the physical realm can be. For example, humans possess consciousness and that can be confirmed by observing their actions—they are walking, talking, aware of their surroundings and interacting with people and things. Those are all effects of consciousness. “Pure consciousness itself, that which is described as Is-ness, Being-ness, I-am-ness, represents the infinite potential, infinite power and infinite energy source of all existence, identified as Deity, God, Divinity.”9
Consciousness is a thing that evades the constraints of the material realm. Made in His image, humans possess a kernel of the Supreme Consciousness. His Law is written in the hearts of men, even if they never heard the revelation, they instinctively know the foundation of what’s right and what’s wrong in relation to living amongst their fellow man. As the First Source and Center of all consciousness, existing outside of time and space, The Divine Mind of God metes out consciousness to all humans in his creation. His consciousness also permeates the rest of the creation by connecting with the replication of living cells to provide instruction on self-replication (DNA), and the intricacies of metabolism. His Supreme Consciousness also orders our world, solar system and universe so that the creation we inhabit will be inhabitable and capable of sustaining life to begin with. “The spiritual essence of God is inexhaustible; it pervades all space and all things, and its greatest manifestations are in principles and not in things. Be therefore aware of this truth, that man in his highest spiritual state on this planet, can only reflect the God principle through the intermediary of the Holy Ghost or, rather, by his own attunement to the creative principle of God and His nature, and this attunement he may reach through the divine fraternal law.”10
As a Supreme, intelligent consciousness, the Divine Mind exists outside of the realm of time and space and outside of the logic flow of cause and effect. It is permanently existing and, having no physical form, never was created – it just always was. As a creative force, the Supreme Consciousness constantly seeks to expand its experience through its creation and instills fractals of its Consciousness into the humans who inhabit it in order to share His love and beauty with them. Being separated from the physical realm, God experiences no passage of time. His consciousness is a supreme awareness of all that is.
The Urantia Book summarizes the difficulties we have with anthropomorphizing God to assist us in understanding His attributes. “In all our efforts to enlarge and spiritualize the human concept of God, we are tremendously handicapped by the limited capacity of the mortal mind. We are also seriously handicapped in the execution of our assignment by the limitations of language and by the poverty of material which can be utilized for purposes of illustration or comparison in our efforts to portray divine values and to present spiritual meanings to the finite, mortal mind of men.”11
We cannot see God directly, but we can experience him. Rather than using the scientific method of hypothetical discovery, we use the more abstract—but equally valid—method of nonhypothetical discovery. The former relies on a hypothesis, scientific tests and investigation in order to verify; the latter relies solely on personal experiences in order to establish a fact. “Indeed, adherents of all three Western religions have consistently felt that their knowledge of God comes primarily from sources other than those of observation and reasoning. This does not mean that observation and reason are to be excluded from an examined, deep faith; they certainly must play a role if one’s faith is to be reasonable and whole. Analysis and testing of one’s faith through reason and observation, however, must come chronologically, educationally, and logically after one gains faith in the first place, and that comes from interacting with God.”12
We know our Creator by connecting with Him through consciousness—that one attribute that evades time and space and once fully connected with Him through faith, the individual finite human consciousness can then enjoy the timeless realm of infinity with the First Source and Center of all that is.
1. The Origin of the Universe, ©1994 John D. Barrow, p. 45
2. A Brief History of Time, ©1988 Stephen Hawking, p. 32
3. Starlight and Time: Solving the Puzzle of Distant Starlight in a Young Universe, Russell Humphreys Ph.D., ©1994 Master Books, Inc., pp. 27-28
4. The Elegant Universe; Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions and the Quest for the Ultimate Theory, ©2003 Brian R. Greene, p. 50
5. Perfect Symmetry: The Search for the Beginning of Time, ©1985 Heinz Pagels, p. 242
6. A Brief History of Time, ©1988 Stephen Hawking, p. 33
7. Exodus 3:14
8. Power vs. Force; An anatomy of Consciousness, © Dr. David Hawkins, MD., e-book p. 101
9. op cit., p. 106
10. The Spiritual Mysteries Revealed, ©1924 Joseph H. Thomas, p. 43
11. The Urantia Book, ©1955 URANTIA Foundation, p. 33
12. Knowing God, ©1992 Elliot N. Dorff, p. 38