Assuming that something really can’t come from nothing (I know it’s controversial but if it’s true)...

Then at any given point in time (t), something exists and therefore something also existed at t-1. Doesn’t this mean an infinite period of time has already passed in order for us to arrive at t (now)?

  • If there exists something now and with your assumption that "something can't come from nothing", by classic logic even with infinite regress there still existed something no matter how infinitely long ago... – Double Knot May 11 at 19:47
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    Who says causality must be discrete, as in "t-1"? For example consider the open unit interval of real numbers (0,1), the set of real numbers strictly between 0 and 1. If you pick any time t in that interval, it's preceded by infinitely many other times. There is no first time. Yet the entire set is bounded. It doesn't go infinitely far back. Interesting model, right? – user4894 May 11 at 21:22
  • If the time is classical and progresses in discrete steps, and if something cannot come out of nothing then having something at any step implies having something at infinitely many prior steps. With discrete time replaced by continuous time (and the corresponding modifications) this was essentially the Aristotle's argument for the eternity of the world. – Conifold May 12 at 8:02

'Something can’t come from nothing.' This is true. Otherwise we'd better give up logic and reasoning.

You know this empirical world we perceive is the effect of our five senses and mind. You might have felt that we, humans, are not better than some creatures in the case of certain perception. The reality must be something else; we can certainly say so. Sometimes the empirical world may be meaningless. Theories will not be applicable after a certain level.

You know imagination is a creation of our mind. The imagination about the moment -- t-1, is just a creation of your/our present thought. Reality may not be so. This thought is because of the mindset that is deeply rooted in Mathematics. Or more frankly speaking, it is the limitation of our logic. Please don't believe that logic is everything.

Also, to 'experience' time, there must be a change in something; at least in your/our thought.

If there is a changeless thing or where/when there is no time (or when there is nothing), you cannot connect the two ideas -- time and infinite. The word, 'period' -- a by-product of time, will also disappear. And the net result, the term -- 'an infinite period of time', becomes meaningless. You know that something that does not manifest (infinite period of time) cannot pass by either.


Something can come from 'nothing', by the uncertainty principle.

What is time? In Penrose's Conformal Cyclic Cosmology, he draws on the fact photons don't experience time to say once the universe has decayed only to photons, it will be equivalent to the highly ordered smooth big bang state, and in fact be that - exploding after a literally indefinable timespan. In a sense there is your 'infinite' time span. Undefined, is a more accurate description though.

I would say there never could have been nothing, because that is undefinable, meaningless. Buddhist cosmology describes infinite time having passed. In a modern framing, I'd suggest the E8 mathematical structure may have always 'existed' as potentiality, as the space of all possible physics.

  • When people downvote, please say why you think it is incorrect or problematic. This isn't Reddit. – CriglCragl May 15 at 23:56

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