posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 09:36 PM
Musings on infinity/eternity, not necesssarily related:
1) The Tendai school of Buddhism, which tends to be rather dense and philosophical rather than "shut up and sit down" like Zen, talks about two
dimensions of time: "horizontal time" and "vertical time." Horizontal time is the familiar progression of time in the world around us that can be
seen like a "time line." Think of it as a road winding along the countryside. "Vertical time," in this metaphor, would be more like a clear blue
sky above. The traveler on the road experiences ups and downs, a sense of change, various adventures, etc...but high above the clear blue sky is
always there and never changes. Moreover, there is no clear "line" seperating the sky from the earth (except the surface of the earth itself). This
this unchanging realm is not only "high above us" but surrounds us at every momemnt and sustains us as we breathe in the air, etc. Humanity thus
simultaneously experiences both forms of time at each and every moment: both the finine and the infinite. I like that concept very much.
2) I also like the idea of "alephs" in matehematics. These are sets of infinite numbers that nevertheless differ from each other, despite both being
For example, imagine a theoretical universe where there were an infinite number of cubes. Now, each cube has 8 corners, right? So the total number of
corners in this universe should be eight times greater than the total number of cubes. But how could this be if they are both infinite? It freaked out
a lot of math people in the 1800s.
Gregor Cantor tried to solve the problem by designating different "infinities" with the symbol "aleph." For example, the number of cubes would be
"aleph-1" infinity while the number of corners (a larger yet also infinite number) would be "aleph-2" infinity. Chew on that for a while,
[edit on 10/6/09 by silent thunder]