Some Christians are skeptical about science. They just don't care to know. The evolution debate scares them perhaps. I embrace science. If it is accurate and true then it is from God. God is rational and scientific because He is the source of all reason and natural laws. We might not always see the connection because on the surface science and religion sometimes clash. There are scientists though now working on something so exciting, that perhaps it gives us the ultimate look at how the Lord constructed the universe. It might even tell us how miracles are performed.
It's called string theory, or M-theory in its most mature form. Basically it states that everything in the universe is made up of tiny vibrating strings. The shape and vibration of each string decide what form it will take. The equations that have been derived seem to have unlocked the puzzles that eluded even Einstein.
Why is this important and how does it apply to the Christian? Well I believe God created our universe in such a way that we could enjoy discovering how it works. In discovery we can further appreciate the beauty of Him and His creation. Part of this beauty might be string theory.
The strings of a guitar can be changed to make different notes, but the string itself doesn't really change. So imagine strings of energy that depend on their vibration to determine what they are and do. Theoretically everything that exists, even light and gravity, is made up of these strings. And it's only a matter of vibration/energy change that determines if something is an apple, ape, or thin air. Everything is made up of the same basic building block, or string, and the note played by that string determines its form.
This is incredibly exciting. It has a lot to do with probabilities. Since strings are vibrating they are never in any one certain place. Multiply this by millions or billions of times to make up a living creature and we end up with a huge probability equation that determines our existence. Wonder who knows the odds and how to play them better than anyone – couldn't be our Lord could it? Naw....
But it is, or rather, He is. By manipulating/predicting the vibratory odds of the strings, He could change (or arrange for the change of) any substance into another at will. Seas separate to expose dry land, virgins conceive, water changes into wine, and man rises from the dead. We don't necessarily need a scientific explanation for the miracles performed by God, but does that mean there isn't one? Would it somehow diminish His greatness if we figured out the mechanism behind miracles? I don't think so. In fact it makes Him all the more accessible and fills me with even more wonder knowing that behind such complex events in nature (and perhaps even miracles) might rest an incredibly simple explanation.
There's a catch though. So far the theory has not been tested in a lab. No one has ever "seen" a string. The distances are too small to be measured and the theory has only been established mathematically. There's more. The theory also predicts the existence of multiple dimensions, eleven to be exact. Now mind you, this is a theory produced by physicists and mathematicians, not spiritual gurus. Nevertheless, the theory predicts other dimensions invisible to us. Could beings (e.g.angels) then travel between dimensions to appear suddenly before our eyes? Funny how the Bible already described this thousands of years ago.
There is a fierce debate among scientists about string theory. Some call it a philosophy more than a science, or even a religion if you will. Is this a place where we can "see" God most clearly, at this interface between science and faith? What will the future in this field mean for humankind? What will it answer to us about God?
Some might think that my interest here shows my lack of faith, but I challenge the reverse. If one fears that the findings of science might contradict the existence of God then whose faith is weak? All truth must establish His presence. He is a rational God. He would not have constructed our universe haphazardly or absurdly. God might be mysterious but He's certainly not silly, nor dumb. Many things strengthen our faith and this can be one of them. Yet even if string theory were to be proven it would still only scratch the thinnest surface of the entire reality that is the Lord. He can only fully be appreciated by us through our spiritual self, through His grace, ultimately untouchable by reason and science alone.
"For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse" Romans 1:20
I have a different take altoghter. In the old testament someone prophecies about the end times "the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light." That prophet knew the moon doesn't give light on it's own, and that the sun was to be darkened, not explode or something. Right before Jesus goes up to heaven he shows his disciples how to read the bible as of references to Jesus from the old testament. What if we could read the bible like that?
On a personal note I saw a scary thing on pbs yesterday about black holes, and the theory is that black holes will one day destroy all life and all galaxies. (Like the huge one in our galaxy.)
The people who do study the bible study it like a science. I don't think we're doing what Jesus taught his disciples to do. We should pray for that kind of bible reference.
Maybe it all exists in the same continuum, but the Lord has simply limited our senses while we are on this earth and in this bodily form? Hmm..
Hey, ya ever notice when you get the Holy Ghost bumps, you feel just a bit of "vibration" or tingling???? Just thought I would throw that out.
Yes, string theory is just that, a theory. I for one find it too abstract, even the Standard Model of Particel Physics. there are loop holes everywhere in this neck of the science woods. Einstein said "God does not play dice." He would not have accepted Quantum Mechanics had he been alive to see it really grow. Inexplicable things exist in quantum theory that are absolutely mind-boggling. Here's my take on this: I think this is God's way off saying "You've reached the end of your human understanding. Trust in me." What is beyond quarks? some say strings at the level 10^-35m. But what would be comprising the strings then? the argument can go on infinitely (Xeno's Paradox). I think the quirks exposed in quantum mechanics and the very nature of how these science are wholly probabalistic at these levels show how we are reaching the limit of our ability to experiment and understand. I would hope some of these physicists take a step back and look at the big picture...they could see God speaking right to them! It's disheartening to know that a lot of these scientists are just not seeing the Truth. So, maybe God really is "throwing dice" when it gets down to the subatmoic world...after all, if scientists reach that "impenetrable wall" one day where somehow, it cannot be broken down into constituents, they'll be looking right into God's handiwork. I just don't think it can happen. I am excited to someday soon start my career as a high school physics teacher.
Clayonmyeyes, I agree with you! String Theory is a fantastic possible explanation of what is going on in the "megaverse," and at the subatomic level. It is unproven and doubted by many. But if it is True, then it will establish His presence - as clayonmyeyes says. Once you have decided that all truth must establish His presence - it doesn't matter what the scientists find - it all proves what we already know without examination or evidence. It is troubling though that the pioneers of String Theory all seem to doubt the existence of a personal God....
Leonard Susskind ended his book "The Cosmic Landscape, String Theory and the Illusion of Intelligent Design" with the following quote regarding whether there is a god: "Let me close this book with the words of Pierre-Simon de Laplace that opened it:"I have no need of this hypothesis." I
It is also troubling that Einstein himself's opinion of a personal god was reflected in his private letters such as: "It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it. " So, be careful how much science you open yourself up to - it seems to lead all the great physicists and rationalists away from Him - and to Einstein's rational view.
Lunky wrote: "Yes, string theory is just that, a theory."
I have two comments:
String theory would more accurately be described as a hypothesis rather than a theory. There is a significant lack of sufficient evidence to call it a theory.
A theory is really the result of a significant amount of evidence such that the theory can be used to make testable predictions which lead to additional support for the theory, the modification thereof, or the genesis of a new theory.
This string theory you speak of sounds interesting, it makes some sense, but I think there is more to it then we will ever know. We aren't suppose to know how God does everything...there would be no reason for faith in the things unseen. We will never know everything God knows. He has been here for eternity...we can't even begin to unlock these mysteries. I found your blog very very interesting. Amazing perspective on things.