Tuesday, June 07, 2005 By Maryam
By Mark MacDowell and Paul Utukuru
(May 26, 2005)
A bad workman blames his tools, but what if the tools are just not sharp enough for the job?
A major problem in modern cosmology is related to the issue of duality and non-duality, which is directly related to the only tool available to us: mathematics. With math, we try to trace back the origins of our universe to the point when space and time did not exist. All goes well until we get to just a moment after the big bang. Beyond that, our mathematics breaks down and refuses to go back any further to the exact moment of the event, usually referred to as the space-time singularity.
This breakdown occurs for two reasons. One is that our cosmological mathematics is either time-dependent, meaning that there is no change in space without some reference to a change in time, or space-dependent, meaning that there is no time without some reference to a change in space. That being the case, how can we ever describe mathematically the space-time singularity that doesn’t exist in space-time?
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