A Universe from Nothing? Has Lawrence M. Krauss Missed the Point?

To cut to the chase it is my view that Dr. Lawrence M. Krauss, eminent cosmologist, theoretical physicist, and author of A Universe from Nothing: Why There Is Something Rather than Nothing,[1] has missed the point of the argument. Yet, his book is fascinating, and the discoveries he discusses are very significant, perhaps in ways he has not yet considered.

Let me state quite plainly that I accept and respect all the scientific discoveries and theories that Krauss describes. I have neither the skill nor the training to counter them, and nor do I feel a need to do so. I have faith in the integrity and dedication of the scientists who are collecting and analysing the data, and proposing the theories based on mathematical calculation and/or study of the data. If they have it wrong, I know they will correct it, and slowly but surely, the physical scientific realities of the universe will be uncovered. So that is not my focus.

My concern is the philosophical and spiritual interpretation that is derived by scientists from their theories and data, even if it is purely to say that there is no need for God or that what philosophers or theologians might have to say is necessarily of little worth. Accordingly, my mission is to find the middle path reconciling both the scientific and philosophical/spiritual views in a way that is coherent and all-embracing. It is logical to me that there is a theory of everything being uncovered, and that this theory must incorporate science, philosophy, spirituality, religion, and every other body of work and view of the universe, each of course honed to its own accurate and “perfect” set of truths.

Krauss initially changes the question from why there is something rather than nothing, to how there is something rather than nothing. As he points out, using the word why implies purpose, and as a scientist he would rather describe the process of how it is possible for something to derive from nothing.

As with many scientists who see everything as being explained by science, Krauss sees no need for a God or a Creator. Krauss does not consider the possibility that God designed and implemented science’s physical laws in order to create the universe as it is. While I can understand that physical laws need to be coherent and obviously are, there is no reason in my mind why these could not have been designed by a superior Designer to work in just that way. It would appear to me that the how that Krauss insists on discovering is exactly the uncovering of the path that God took to achieve what He (She, It) achieved. In many ways the why question is far more challenging and momentous than the physical and cosmological discoveries under discussion.

Krauss explains three ways in which something can come from nothing. In brief they are (though I accept that my descriptions may not be perfect):

  •  In the first fraction of a second of the Big Bang a period of inflation occurred, where the universe expanded by a factor of more than 1028, and the resulting quantum fluctuations allowed matter to form out of nothing.
  •  A quantum gravity of zero allows, and even initiates, matter (and thus the universe) to be created from nothing. A state of nothing is ultimately unstable.
  • The concept of a multiverse shows that up to 10500 (that is 1 with 500 zeroes) unique universes may exist. Thus by chance our one happens to have the perfect set of physical laws to produce the universe we see.

 Krauss admits that in the first of these three possibilities, the nothing described is empty space storing energy, and allows for the existence of the Laws of Physics. In the second possibility, the need for pre-existing space has been removed. In the third and final way in which something can come from nothing, Krauss takes away the Laws of Physics, in that they become measurements and descriptions of what exists as opposed to needing to pre-exist in order to create the universe we know.

It does not take much to see that we are still not talking about creating a universe from nothing, or answering the question of why there is something rather than nothing. Krauss suspects that at the time of Plato (423-347BC), or even St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), they were defining nothing as empty space, as they considered why there was something rather than nothing. I suspect that this is very far from the truth.

Why is there something instead of nothing? My definition of nothing, and I would have thought, the definition of everybody else except scientists, is that nothing means absolutely and entirely nothing at all. Therefore no space, no time, no physics, no mathematics, no nothing! Krauss complains about people redefining nothing to suit their purposes, but frankly, I believe that is exactly what he has done. To me, nothing means absolutely nothing at all.

So on to my argument. Yes, there could have been nothing at all instead of a universe. There really is no reason why there should be anything. Why bother? And who would there be to bother? Yet clearly we have a universe, as so ably described by Krauss and his fellow scientists. Therefore there can never have been the state of nothing, because if there were nothing, absolutely nothing at all, how would anything ever have got started? There would be no virtual particles to pop in and out of existence as suggested by quantum mechanics, and there would be no space in which they could pop. There would be no source of a multiverse and there would be no conditions to initiate a Big Bang.

It follows that something did pre-exist the Big Bang, and Krauss confirms that today’s thinking is that the Big Bang was a certainty. Great, I am perfectly happy with that, and happy that it happened too, as I am sure you are. It would also seem sensible to suggest that, whatever pre-existed the Big Bang, it has existed eternally, whatever that term might be interpreted to mean. There could never be the time, place or situation where there was nothing at all, as even this pre-existing state could never have got started.

My suggestion is that the eternal, pre-existing state was Consciousness. It could also be called Life or Being. By many people, especially those with religious beliefs and affiliations, It is called God (or their alternative words for God). In my book, whatever Its nature or qualities, that eternal, pre-existing state that enabled there to be something rather than nothing, and got the universe started, is absolutely worthy of the name God, whatever that Ultimate Reality is.

[1] Krauss, L., A Universe from Nothing: Why There Is Something Rather than Nothing, Free Press, New York, 2012

I Know the Title, but What is The God Franchise?

When I realised the tremendous implications of The God Franchise, I was astounded. Initially I thought it just meant that while God had “created” the natural aspects of the universe, He had given Man a franchise to create technology and all the manufactured and developed things in the world today. No! It is so much more than that.

In the book I start by describing a franchise as developed in the business world. A franchise agreement between a franchisor (the originator) and a franchisee (you) allows you to create and run a business under the franchise name, and market and sell the franchised product or service.

For the privilege of being able to do this, you pay the franchisor a franchise fee, plus a percentage of the sales of your business. In return, the franchisor provides the systems you will need to run the business, as well as some marketing support, including group advertising. 

The God Franchise takes this concept to the ultimate. It states that God-Consciousness (God) can be seen as a Franchisor, and that you and I and every other person on this Earth individually is a Franchisee. By creating Mankind in his own image, God-Consciousness franchised His Creative Power to each and every man and woman on Earth. This is a key concept of The God Franchise. In addition, God-Consciousness gave us free will (as He naturally has), consciousness, and purpose. In fact, he gave us all his qualities to a greater or lesser extent: He franchised everything to each of us in what may be termed The God Franchise.

Now, before you get too carried away with this concept, let’s look at it more closely. It does not mean that you can rush off and create universes. We have many veils covering our Godhead (such as unconsciousness, Ego, self, separateness, and materialism), and there are other constraints, some of which I have covered in recent blogs.

You and I are franchisees in the ability to create and to live our lives from a divine perspective. The qualities we have discussed in earlier blogs as being God’s qualities, are available to each of us to a greater or lesser extent, whether we use them consciously or unconsciously. Remember that God’s use of these qualities is way beyond what we need to use, and our personal application of them is really as much as we can handle, and for practical purposes is unlimited.

God is conscious, eternal, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, creator, purposeful, omnibenevolent and immutable. So I am saying that we have access to these very qualities at some level. To be more specific than that would take more space than is available to me in this current blog. I do go into all the details of both this and the franchise comparison in Chapter 11 of The God Franchise.

This is all very well, you say, but does that make me God? No, not quite. Just because God is you, does not make you God. Just because you are a McDonald’s franchise holder does not mean you are McDonald’s! It means you have the right to run a store according to some very strict rules, and you are compensated for your efforts. However, you also need to pay dues to McDonald’s Corporation, and you cannot claim to be the McDonald’s Corporation.

As spiritual adepts know, it is possible to get close to God-Consciousness. In doing that, they usually, if not always, leave behind the trappings of the earthly experience. Nevertheless, all the powers and qualities of God-Consciousness are represented in each of us in a more manageable potency. We have all the powers and qualities we need and, frankly, all we can handle.

Whether we are a spiritual adept, a high-flying businessperson, or a beggar in the street, we have an equal stake as a God Franchisee. God is an equal-opportunity franchisor!

So isn’t this great? Does this not change your view of life? What do you think? I would very much appreciate your comments.

(This is largely an extract from Chapter 11 of my book, The God Franchise: A Theory of Everything, which is now available to you in paperback from over a dozen major online bookshops)

God’s Decision to Create the Universe

In my last post I listed a series of different experiences that God-Consciousness might choose to experience. Of course there are billions of others. So what happened next?

With these sorts of experiences and goals in mind, God-Consciousness set about creating the universe exactly as it needed to be to fulfil these ideals. While God-Consciousness would be able to interfere if He needed to, there was no challenge in constantly tweaking this universe when something went wrong. As He could see ahead in time how things would pan out, He could create the universe with a set of rules or Laws that would see it through.

I am certainly not able to list what is needed to create a universe; however, our scientists have figured out some of the requirements, for instance:

  • A stable set of rules or laws
  • Oxygen, water, and carbon to sustain life
  • A particular range of temperatures to support life
  • A particular set of universal constants
  • A supply of energy to make the universe dynamic
  • And so on …

And so it was that God-Consciousness created a universe that met His requirements. While complicated in its details, mind-boggling in fact, it is very simple in its concept. We, as humans, overcomplicate things as far as I can see. The real Truths are essentially very simple.

God-Consciousness created the universe in a Big Bang. He created the Laws that were needed and the building blocks of matter – namely the 94 natural elements in a very simple system we can see today in the Periodic Table of the Elements. He watched through time as 14 billion years passed, developing the rich and bountiful world we have around us today.

Finally, the time came for Man to appear on the scene. Bearing in mind that God-Consciousness is within each person on this Earth – in fact, within each cell of the bodies of each person on this Earth, and is them – He played His trump card.

He introduced The God Franchise.

(This is largely an extract from Chapter 10 of my book, The God Franchise: A Theory of Everything, which is now available to you in paperback from over a dozen major online bookshops)

A Successful Book Launch

The God Franchise: A Theory of Everything is officially launched!

On Tuesday 27 March 2012 we held a book launch at Goodeys Bookstore in Newmarket, Auckland, New Zealand. We had a good turnout of over twenty people, and the presentation went easily and smoothly. I read some chosen parts from the book, interspersed with an overview of the book’s contents. This was followed by questions and answers.

Not to mention the cheese and biscuits, and a glass of wine or two…

Sales of the book were good too. And I kept busy signing copies of the book afterwards.

I have had subsequent feedback from many who attended the launch that they enjoyed the evening and found the talk on The God Franchise very interesting.

If you would like more information about what was said at the talk, or The God Franchise itself, and you are not already on our mail list, please click on the Life Magic Publishing (http://publishing.lifemagic.co.nz) website.

Alternatively, please purchase your copy of The God Franchise: A Theory of Everything from Amazon or one of the many other online stockists around the world. See http://publishing.lifemagic.co.nz/stockists.htm for a full list of stockists.

Over to you now!

The Filters from the Scriptures

There are many scriptures and holy books in the world, written at different times and from different perspectives. These include the Holy Bible (Old Testament and New Testament), the Koran, the Bhagavad-Gita, the Upanishads, and the Tao Te Ching. I am not a scholar of these books and am only familiar with the Bible to a certain extent, so I will limit my comments.

The books of the Old Testament were originally transmitted by word of mouth and were written down between 1200 BC and 100 BC, while the New Testament books were written down between 50 AD and 150 AD. As Bible scholars will tell you, there were many authors of these books and there is still considerable controversy about much of the detail and circumstance of the Bible. Of course, now is not the time to debate this, nor am I equipped to do so.

What I can say is that the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I can say this because God-Consciousness is the being of every one of us, and of course every one of the authors of the Bible. Just as we have filters come into play in everything we do and say, as discussed in earlier blogs, so is this true of the authors of the Bible. The Bible was written to the level of understanding and the terminology of the people of those times.

Likewise, every other scripture, and for that matter every other book ever written on spiritual or other matters, is to some greater or lesser extent the work of God-Consciousness. However, and I accept this is a big however, the filters of the author’s own Ego make a huge difference to the importance and trustworthiness of the final work. Thus, one cannot equate the Holy Scriptures listed above with say a formulaic Mills & Boon romantic novel, or the work of a biased, egocentric, down-on-his-luck-and-skills pseudo-scientist or pseudo-spiritual teacher.

Each one of us, individually, comes from our own place. This is part God-Consciousness and part Ego. The mix differs for each person, and this is what makes it interesting. This is what makes each individual’s contribution to evolution and continuing creation interesting, and it is from this that wars, corruption, and poverty spring. They do not come from a Satan lurking in the background, from Original Sin, or from a dystheistic (possibly evil) God — they come from free will and the Ego, nothing else.

St John chapters 13 to 17 are very interesting chapters in the Bible. These are the words of Jesus at the Last Supper, just before he was betrayed by Judas. They are worth reading and studying. Christians take the words to mean we need to be Christians and follow Jesus in order to know God. I believe the meaning of the words is much broader, so please do take some time to read these five chapters of St John with an open mind.

These passages point to God-Consciousness being in Jesus, and that there was still a differentiation. It is not that God and Jesus are identical entities. Jesus was not speaking from a point of Ego here, so when he speaks of I or me, he is speaking of the Christhood or God-Consciousness in him. And so, “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do.” (John 14:12) This refers to anyone who recognises the God-Consciousness in themselves. We all, without Ego, can do greater works than Jesus did. This is not a competition. This is reality, and it is evolution in all things.

So the Scriptures are very important in that they are the way most of us get to hear about, and start to think about, God. However, the Scriptures cannot be taken as literal in their entirety. Firstly, they were worded for an audience different from today’s audience, and secondly, while they may be the inspired Word of God, there is also the human element of Ego filtering the work, either intentionally or unintentionally. This does not invalidate the Scriptures — it just means you need to use them as a source of inspiration and of pointers, not of literal facts. Having said that, this current book, my humble offering to the spiritual literature, is also not a book of literal facts — it is offered as a source of inspiration and pointers to the Truth, whatever that really is.

The Truth is within you, within the God-Consciousness that you are.

(This is largely an extract from Chapter 14 of my book, The God Franchise: A Theory of Everything, which is now available to you in paperback from over a dozen major online bookshops)

The Human Being and Conscious Creation

In my last few blogs I have been talking about the filters that exist with regard to ongoing creation. Whether the creation process is done consciously or unconsciously has a considerable impact on the outcome, and so is the next filter we need to consider.

People can be either more or less conscious about their creativity. We could say that some creativity is conscious and other creativity is unconscious.

Conscious Creation is about an individual’s conscious appreciation of the fact that he or she can create consciously. That it is not only the ability to create a new book, a new artwork, or a new product, it is also the ability to create your own experience of life at will.

In truth, there are many thousands of people who do understand and operate the Law of Conscious Creation, which we can call by its more common and topical name, the Law of Attraction — or by the name I prefer, the Law of Manifestation. Nevertheless, there is no general appreciation of the realities of The God Franchise. There are many books now on the market about the Law of Attraction, and it is becoming better known. Still, people generally do not appreciate what it is and how it works. This is an exciting development (evolution) ahead for Man.

Unconscious Creation is the experience of the vast majority of people during the greater part of their lives. Since Man appeared on Earth some 150,000 years ago, development has been very slow. Cultures have come and gone, and it is only since the Industrial Revolution, which started around 1850, that progress has been huge. Since then, of course, the rate of change has been phenomenal, and today new products are obsolete even before they hit the marketplace.

The everyday person has been caught up in this constant rush of creativity, and many people are directly involved in making something better from what has already been created. This creativity has been a part of the lives of every living person on Earth today, with the possible exception of those people living in the outposts of the world – those living away from civilisation. Nevertheless, there is no real appreciation in most people of what this power of creativity is, and therefore, much of this creativity can be viewed as being unconscious.

In addition to this, and perhaps more importantly, everything we do or say or think in this life is attracting things towards us or pushing things away from us. This is creation at a much more subtle level. We create the lives that we lead, in every detail. I cover this subject in much more detail in Part Four of The God Franchise.

 (This is largely an extract from Chapter 14 of my book, The God Franchise: A Theory of Everything, which is now available to you in paperback from over a dozen major online bookshops)

Writing The God Franchise: A Potted History

The process of writing my first book, The God Franchise, is very interesting, and I thought I would like to share it here.

I started way back in 2003 writing a book which I called Life Magic: Your God Franchise. The emphasis was on various aspects of Life and how we could perform magic on our lives, Life Magic being defined as “the art of creating your own experience of life at will”. The first half of the book covered principles, and the second half practice. After writing for about six months, I realised that the book needed, and I needed, more practical experience of what I was writing about.  

Accordingly I took some training on spiritual healing (late 2003), and set up practice as an energy healer in 2004, using the name Life Magic Associates. In 2004 I flirted with Life Coaching and completed the NLP Practitioner Course, adding Neuro-Linguistic Programming to my practical offering. I also became interested in bio-energetics and even bought a BioMeridian MSAS Professional System at the end of 2004. This system is used to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of a person’s energetic health and balance, as well as producing an energetic homoeopathic-like remedy to aid the client regain their health. 

Unfortunately I soon realised that the MSAS was far too subjective in that I was able to directly influence it, and I did not have the background health knowledge to support any conclusions reached by the machine. So through 2005 and 2006 I attended a Naturopathic College fulltime, with the intention of learning all I needed to support my healing work. By mid-2006 I came to the conclusion that the more medical aspects of the course were not for me, and decided to leave before the final year of studies. In 2007 and 2008 I attended all the modules of The Journey Practitioners Programme, as well as completing the 45 case studies that are required. During 2007 I also undertook a course in copywriting, and started working in that field, undertaking a number of interesting projects. In addition, in 2008 I completed the Master NLP Practitioners Course. 

I received my accreditation as a Journey Practitioner in January 2009, and have been practising as a Journey Practitioner since then in what was now termed the Life Magic Healing Centre. For almost 3 years I had premises just off the local high street, but had to move out when my landlord decided to retire.  

In December 2009 I joined Brandon Bays, the founder of The Journey, and about 140 other Journey Practitioners on a three-week spiritual tour of India. We visited Delhi, Rishikesh, Lucknow, Varanasi, Sarnath, Bodh Gaya, Tiruvannamalai (Mt. Arunachala) and Mamallapuram. On my return from India in early January, I was in a state of openness about my life, and decided, after a couple of days, that now was the time to complete my book!

For the first half of 2010 I worked on writing a book which I gave the working title of Stop the Search. Then in August 2010 I suddenly realised that another book had to be written first: The God Franchise. So setting all I had written aside, I started again. This time the work flowed and the book soon started taking shape.

By March 2011 The God Franchise was complete, had had its first edit by a friend, and I was able to enter it into the prestigious Ashton Wylie Trust Unpublished Manuscript Award 2011. By the end of August The God Franchise had been nominated as a finalist (4 out of 57) in the competition, and I decided that self-publishing was the answer for this book. 

The God Franchise: A Theory of Everything was published 25 January 2012, a mere 5 months after I had decided to take that route. In that time I had obtained permission to use various quotes, had the book professionally edited, had the cover and interior professionally designed, and set up a printer (Lightning Source in Australia, US and UK). Phew!

Now all that is left is to entice you to buy a copy. How about it? Try Amazon.com or your favourite online bookshop – a full list of stockists  is available at http://publishing.lifemagic.co.nz. 

Thank you. Please blog your thoughts and queries after reading The God Franchise in the Q & A section of this site, and let’s get to it.