The concept of infinity is one I sometimes struggle with, and find it quite difficult to accept that there’s anyone who can completely get their head around it without experiencing at least a little brain-ache.It’s more easily understood in terms of mathematics, in knowing that certain calculations are going to result in an answer involving decimal places which will continue forever.
For example, it’s impossible to perfectly divide ten into three. To three decimal places, the answer is 3.333. But for increased accuracy, an additional ‘3’ could be added to the figure, which could in theory be repeated forever. The number would become more accurate but still not perfect.
Infinity becomes an altogether more difficult idea to think of when applying the concept to time.
Try to imagine that there was no start to time, that it goes on and on and never, ever ends. That something has always been there.
Some scientists believe that the universe is infinite and has always existed. Others that it was formed by the Big Bang, an explosion which is quite literally believed to have led to the creation of everything. The religious argument is that God, however you may think of God, was the creator.
The issue with any of those theories is what it was that preceded each of them. To say that God has always existed is a failure to answer how God came into existence and taking that statement by itself, it is easy to understand why those sceptical of Christianity, or any other religion, demand an answer to that question before being willing to move on.
A similar question could be asked of the scientific or atheistic stance however, and to whatever chemical or biological process was believed to have formed the universe. Whatever conditions that are believed to have been present at that time must have originated from something, somehow.
Depending on what you believe regarding the formation of the universe, either things originated by themselves over time, from nothing whatsoever, or it was put into place by a creator.
What went on before that is an incredibly difficult concept to even attempt to imagine, but does result in both those with a faith in God and those who don’t being put in the same boat – neither have any conclusive answers that satisfy the opposite camp.
It’s at this point where faith comes in. Faith in God, or faith in the science to provide the answers. The difficulty with the former is as noted above: Where did God come from?
But the problem in relying on science to provide all of the answers to such of questions are even more numerous. Aside from the issue noted earlier, there have been multiple theories put forward attempting the explain the nature of the cosmos, and no doubt more will follow in the future.
Different scientists, different theories, and no concrete answer.
Additionally, the very nature of science means that any particular theory can be quickly ruled out and disproved at any time in the future, with the discovery of a small piece of additional evidence that contradicts a previously accepted viewpoint.
And that makes it all the easier to believe in the existence of God, but trying to get my head around the infinite existence of God, and where God came from, will continue to cause brain-ache.
At some point though, you have to stop trying to obtain all of the answers.