“C-God” 13.8 Billion Years Old

Yes, it has been confirmed:  13.8 billion years old.

That is the age of our entire known Cosmos (C) or Universe from the very first millisecond it exploded into existence until today. Or for the hard-line Faithers out there, “Yahweh” or “God” or “Allah” or whatever your personal supreme being is named, it is without question 13.8 billion years old.

There have been several techniques to calculate and estimate the age of the Universe. Over the last century four methods of approximation have been used:

  1. The Hubble Constant
  2. Decay of radioactive elements/objects – can also be applied to gases, but with less accuracy
  3. Age of White Dwarf stars, locating the faintest/oldest
  4. Age of ancient star clusters/globulars

Fortunately, and for all prosperity and posterity, science has a fifth and final method ending any debate about the Universe’s age. It is remarkably accurate to within less than 1-percent.

Incorporating method #4 above with the compiled data of NASA’s Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) launched in 2001, and the European Space Agency’s Planck-satellite launched in 2009, we can determine exactly how long our known, visible Cosmos has been around. Watch NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) two-minute video here explaining in layman terms just how this measuring and time-dating works.

NGC 3603 star-cluster

NGC 3603, an open star cluster and starburst region in the Carina spiral arm of the Milky Way around 20,000 light-years away from the Solar System

∼ ∼ ∼ § ∼ ∼ ∼

If those four common measurements are not enough to convince you or other doubters, then perhaps Cosmologist and graduate of Yale and Rutgers Universities in Physics, Mathematics, Astronomy, and Astrophysics, Dr. Neelima Sehgal, currently Associate Professor in Physics & Astronomy at Stony Brook University, NY, can assist your unlearned hesitation. From Stony Brook University’s research journal:

The Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ACT) team in Chile confirmed previous measurements of ancient light-clusters extracted from the Planck satellite data.

[…]

Neelima Sehgal - ACT

Dr. Neelima Sehgal, ACT and Stony Brook University

Obtaining the best image of the infant universe, explains Professor Sehgal, helps scientists better understand the origins of the universe, how we got to where we are on Earth, the galaxies, where we are going, how the universe may end, and when that ending may occur.

[…]

The new ACT estimate on the age of the universe matches the one provided by the standard model of the universe and measurements of the same light made by the Planck satellite. This adds a fresh twist to an ongoing debate in the astrophysics community, says Simone Aiola, first author of one of the new papers on the findings posted to arXiv.org.

“Now we’ve come up with an answer where Planck and ACT agree,” says Aiola, a researcher at the Flatiron Institute’s Center for Computational Astrophysics in New York City. “It speaks to the fact that these difficult measurements are reliable.”

Eternal is Not So Eternal

Oddly enough, it seems now there is actually a beginning and an end to eternal. The Greek words and concept the Alpha and Omega (Rev 21:6; 22:13) are in purely astrophysical terms seemingly truer than ever. Maybe. So it follows then that there is no such thing as forever, timeless, or Eternal. From the above five methods of dating the age of the Cosmos, we now have other fascinating inferences and deductions by astrophysicists, cosmologists, astronomers, and advanced mathematicians about the end or death of our Universe or Creator-God. There are three or four probabilities.

The Big Freeze
This is the death of all differences in heat, or thermodynamics. As the Universe/Cosmos continues expanding at an increasing rate, eventually all forms of energy (heat) will dissipate over time until everything—all celestial bodies, i.e. stars/suns, galaxies, planets, etc.—are just a fraction above absolute zero degrees. The universe will be so spread out over millions, billions, then trillions of light-years, and continuing, that it will become deader and emptier with every millenia.

The Big Crunch
If there is enough or too much stuff in the Universe, i.e. celestial bodies with mass, the expansion of the Cosmos will slow then stop. More stuff means more gravity. The more mass all the bodies gain means more stronger gravity, which means everything gets pulled back in, contracting inward until the Universe becomes so compact, so dense with mass that an astounding inferno occurs, the Big Crunch.

The Big Change
If our Universe is expanding and its expansion is accelerating as most scientists today agree, then matter and energy as we normally understand them could not allow the Universe to continue behaving in this basic manner. In 1998 teams of astrophysicists examining Type 1A supernovae for the Hubble Constant discovered that expansion wasn’t slowing down, but actually accelerating.

Even more bizarre was the expansion had been decelerating, as once thought, until 7-8 billion years after the Big Bang. At that point, for reasons yet to be learned, a puzzling “anti-gravity force” began to dominate, taking over the gravity-induced contracting placed on expansion and then reversed the slowdown and began accelerating. This was dubbed Dark Energy. This energy pulls everything in the Universe apart,  and turns it upside down. The basic building blocks of fundamental particles like electrons and Quarks could be entirely different, radically overhauling our rules of chemistry and maybe impeding the formation of atoms and molecules. It would be quite an inhospitable Big Change. If that were to happen, then plants, animals, humans, even planet and stars would be destroyed. Dark Energy currently makes up about 68% of all energy in the Universe and that percentage is growing each day.

Accelerating Universe - Big Change & Rip

Different possible fates of the Universe, with our actual, accelerating fate shown at the far right. After enough time goes by, the acceleration will leave every bound galactic or supergalactic structure completely isolated in the Universe, as all the other structures accelerate irrevocably away. (NASA & ESA)

The Big Rip
The Big Rip is a more remote, unlikely ending, but nonetheless cannot yet be ruled out. Dark Energy could be more destructive, more powerful than scientists know right now. Here’s the very weird part.

While the Cosmos is expanding, Dark Energy’s (DE) density remains fixed. What this also means is that with increasing volume, more DE pops into existence over time in order to maintain the constant density. What’s even more extraordinarily freaky is that if the density of DE increases as the Universe keeps expanding, then what would happen if DE enlarges faster than the Universe is expanding? In other words, DE’s speed of growth surpasses the speed of light! 😲 This theoretical model is called phantom dark energy and its mechanism is called the Big Rip. Fortunately for our super distant descendants, if this rip were to happen, it would be a horrifically instant death occurring so fast our brains could not process anything that was happening. Woosh! Gone.

And So the Purpose of Consciousness and Life

Everything we mortal humans eventually learn is that all things in life have a beginning, a middle, and an end. All experience, all evidence we have and understand of life indicates a start and a finish. Nothing, not even an original cause or imagined “Creator” is timeless or eternal. It too was born 13.8 billion years ago. He/She/It is growing obese, quicker than before, and will die a final death. Not only is the word eternal fictitious and conceived from ancient, mortal Earthlings’ crude ineptitude passed on transgenerationally, but it is also fruitless, unrewarding for the present. Therefore, I think James Oppenheim had much to say about our life, existence, and the human condition: The foolish man seeks happiness in the distance, the wise grows it under his feet.

There are countless forces that we know dictate our individual lives, significant portions of our lives at the start, most of all with our biological parents. Theirs was also significantly dictated by their biological parents or guardians, and family members. No one has any control whatsoever about who and what their ancestors would be. Earth too is fated to follow external forces. She is just one planet of nine gravitational bodies within our one tiny solar system among billions and trillions of galaxies with millions of other star systems. Our Sun and Jupiter are heavy, major influencers upon Earth’s condition! At the risk of sounding silly and stating the obvious, no one, let alone the entire human species, has the ability (yet?) to make our Sun or Jupiter do anything we wish. And as we’ve now learned from interdisciplinary science, particularly cosmology and astrophysics, the clock is ticking. There will indeed be a final, universal end that not even our man-made God(s) can escape. Is that the Coup d’état of ultimate nihilism? Or is it, as I believe, the epitome of liberation and empowerment, here and now? A tranquility from accepting our place and definitive demise of us, of all things then, now, and that will ever be?

I exist as I am, that is enough. If no other in the world be aware I sit content. And if each and all be aware I sit content. One world is aware, and by the far the largest to me, and that is myself. And whether I come to my own today or in ten thousand or ten million years, I can cheerfully take it now, or with equal cheerfulness, I can wait. Walt Whitman

————

Live Well — Love Much — Laugh Often — Learn Always

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Cyber-status: Self-Reminder

Surprise! This is a quicky shorty.

clockwork orange overkillIn my previous 4-part series Games of Unknowledging, one of the general classifications of ignorance, or in this case so much information ready, available at your fingertips or just a mouse-click away, practically every hour of every day is a prime example of Time and Mental Constraints. It means that given how quickly information is available in our high-tech modern world, we online users, computer geeks, iPhoners and Androiders cannot possibly study and understand all things. We must leave some alone, select what subjects deserve our needs and attention. As a result, this form of ignorance is a product of inattention and can be lost for a period of time or forever. Being the eternal student and lover of broad education in as many areas of life and disciplines as possible, I really struggle with these constraints! After almost 8-years of blogging here and 40+ blogs I’m following, one of my recurring restraints is now my inability to keep up in a timely fashion with all the WordPressers that post/publish every 1-2 days, or sometimes multiple posts per day!

Should I feel negligent, a sense of remorse? Have I committed the horrible offense of biting off more than I can possible chew, let alone digest? Do all our fellow bloggers go through similar questions, doubts, and feelings of disappointing? Do hyper-frequent bloggers expect every single follower to have 20-, 35-, 50-minutes per post multiplied by whatever number they follow — in my case 43 for a total of 43 x 35m = 1,505 minutes, or possibly 25.1 hours — if all 43 posted a new post per day!? When would I write and compose blogs? When in the hell would I sleep? Is this the avant-garde definition of internet obesity? 😵

Back at ground control, there is a problem
Go to rockets full, not responding
Hello Major Tom, are you receiving
Turn the thrusters on, we’re standing by
There’s no reply

Que the perfect song for this insanity…

Earth to Professor. Come In Professor!

Now of course, more realistically and suspending my incorrigible tendency for satire, all our bloggers we follow do not publish every single day, I know that. Why not? Because they do realize (correct?) that all regular bloggers that not only write and post, but also READ other blogs, can’t possibly be in front of the monitor or on their iPhones/Androids 14-hours, 18-hours, or 25-hours straight per day, right? After all, WordPress is NOT setup like that popular, non-stop, 25/7 social-media platform with only a 140-character limit that even the President of the United States uses tweeting international and national headlines, and political, legal, religious, sporting, or scientific personal opinions that aren’t original from his half-functioning brain, right?

major tom in space

No, WordPress isn’t like that. WordPress is for intelligent, well-considered and planned blog-articles of more than 140 (or less) kindergarten characters that have good original stimulating content from various genres of life, right? These types of blog-posts illicit (demand? require?) quality valuable time and attention from their readers, yes? Thus, my struggle to manage well even my fond favorites of 10-12 blogs, much less 40+ blogs! Hahahaha, who am I kidding? My head and body scream at me if I sit in front of my computer monitor for 3-hours straight a day! There have been times when I pushed that beyond 4-hours — I won’t share details what bodily function became painful before I realized the time spent! I can get very, very focused when in that mode. My personality is such that I try hard to give someone my undivided attention. I was raised that way.

We’re Only Human

Well “informed” or overkill? A bed of roses or hate-cultivator? The debate has been presented before and raged since 1991. Is a hyper-library of all imaginable information-on-steroids good or bad for society? It is a never before seen colossal-version of our U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment. Free-speech is a legal right here, sure. But it does also involve concurrent responsibility, that is to say that the speaker/writer has as much accountability for their content as the listener/reader has to understand, filter and scrutinize before judging its value. When the topic is serious, impactful, or even life-saving or life-risking, I believe this interchange should NOT be a fly-by-night 5-second operation. With the advent of internet this accountability has exponentially swelled and it’s only growing in size as billions upon billions of people are given a microphone or camera to a global audience. Julian Assange and Edward Snowden, naming only two, lit up the Pandora Paradox™ that perhaps outshined (and outburned?) the Hiroshima or Nagasaki bombs.

human leagueMy round-about point with all this is to say I have been having a difficult time kindly and responsibly following all your blogs I’ve liked and selected to read and follow. I think maybe 15-20 could be better manageable; anymore than my current 43-45 I just simply cannot get to everyone if several publish daily. I’m only human afterall — as he hums The Human League song — and only capable of limited time to read, comment, and willingly indulge in WordPress conversations or parleys, while simultaneously finding some limited time to compose and publish my own blog-posts. Hah! I have a total of 13 drafts, unfinished posts currently going back to February 2015! What tha hell? 😲

What does help my time and mental constraints for keeping up with all of you is that over the 8-9 years I’ve been blogging, numerous blog sites I selected, for whatever unknown reasons, have vanished, been deleted/deactivated, or have become lethargic. I see these cyber-deaths as a positive for the living! Their end provides the opportunities for new or active, yet to be discovered and exciting blogs and bloggers. A fluid circle of life! These song lyrics from one of my all-time favorite bands, lyricist, and drummer, have been slightly modified to protect the slightly heathen innocent:

No, followers are not for rent
To any god, site or government.
Always hopeful, yet discontent
He knows changes aren’t permanent –
But change is

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Live Well — Love Much — Laugh Often — Learn Always

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Self-Worth

I have to pause (again) my current 4-part series, Games of Unknowledging, for this one very important thermometer on life; a happy, thriving, giving life that most doctors, therapists, and altruists would also consider a most important check-up. I promise my next post will be the conclusion. Promise!

∼ ∼ ∼ § ∼ ∼ ∼

How we define our worth often hinges on what others around us say and do, or don’t say and don’t do, correct? Afterall, how can our own self-perception be accurate, honest, and objective if we have nothing to compare by? What constitutes worth and what exactly are those litmus tests that define it? Are they accurate? How much attention and energy should we give to our worth, its creation and its perpetuation? Peter Gabriel had something to say, or rather sing about self-worth in his 1986 hit “Big Time,” remember?

No matter how we choose to measure our own worth, there are fluctuating degrees of external feedback we seek, consciously or subconsciously, and this can be healthy and/or unhealthy.

Thoreau quote

In our modern age of booming technology, something seemingly new every month, sporting frantic paces, competition, and only 24-hours in a day to get it, manage it and finish it, sometimes at the expense of restful sleep, the insatiable beast of technological-consumerism demands ever-growing absorption. I’m not sure how aggressive it is in other countries, but in the U.S. it’s not just fierce, it has reached the intrusive levels of addiction. Tristan Harris with web-portal Big Think:

So… how do you define your self-worth? One way? Two, three or four different ways? Share your thoughts about how to define self-worth, I’d like to know them.

(paragraph break)

Live Well — Love Much — Laugh Often — Learn Always

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