According to recently published articles and journals, it seems that the great minds of our age are apparently agreeable to one accord . . . that the boundaries of the universe, the depth of all that it contains, and the underlying forces that sustain and motivate it, will one day be fully exposed, comprehended, and ultimately and intimately explained by mankind. Such haughty wisdom is to be seriously doubted.
Brilliant minds that they are, these men of renown continually provide us with wonderful examples of the workings of heaven. Their complex mathematical formulas, their detailed photographic images, and their comprehensive scientific readings in many cases well explains what it is that they are observing. They are, without doubt, to be commended for their work as well as appropriately funded for their research.
However, when actual observation and factual math turns to theory, then the threads of intelligence begin to unravel.
What is the real measure of time and space? Where does the boundary of the universe actually lie? Many would say that it is some 12-billion light years from us. Here, then, one simply needs to ask two very destructive questions; “What is on the other side of the boundary. . . and what, preciously, is time? There will be no factual, scientific answers to these questions.
Let us take perhaps the most famous of all photographs . . . the absolutely beautiful and unimaginably awesome “Hubble deep field shot”. The telescope was aimed at a tiny black spec of space for some ten days, gathering whatever light emitted from there. The results were astounding. Printed out in a 3″ by 5″ format on a magazine page, we can easily now look upon some 10,000 or so galaxies spread out across the image. “Galaxies”, mind you! Billions of miles across in space, all viewable on a 3 x 5 photo. Stunning!
In real terms, however, these quantities that we see are simply too mind boggling and incomprehensible to have any meaningful impact on us. Yes we see it, we think that we can imagine it, yet the reality is that we really cannot. The numbers of time and distance and quantities are just only that, numbers . . . words that we speak.
What, then, is the future of astronomy? It is what it has always been . . . the searching out of, and displaying of, the “observable & quantifiable” universe; the continuing progression into the provable mathematics of the universe; and, yes, the publishing of the many personal “theories” of universal solutions that seem to always abound.
Rest assured, the ends of the universe (time and space) will not be found . . . that, for us, they do not even exist. We simply must listen with amusing interest to the theories of those who profess to know such things, and yet we must rightfully both applaud and respect that which is truthfully revealed to us through their scientific work.
Life truly is an amazing journey through an amazing universe.