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# Does Zero Exist?

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posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:40 PM
If you take any number, and keep halving the value, you will never get to zero. This problem in mathematics is most famously known as the Zeno's paradox. Here's an analogy: Take a piece of bread, with a length of 1. Slice it in half and you have 0.5. Slice it in half again and you have 0.25. Slice it in half again and you have 0.125, etc, etc. You will find the number continues on infinitely when halved and will never reach zero. Theoretically, if you keep slicing the piece of bread in half you will never ever cut the whole thing.

Isn't this a fascinating concept?

This makes me wonder what zero really is. Does it really exist at all? Everything in the physical universe must be made out of at least 1 if something. Yes / no? This concept draws parallels with infinity. You can take any number and double it to an infinite degree. Also, you can take any number and half it to an infinite degree. You can never begin with zero; and you can never reach zero. Another example of this can be found in fractals. Below is a visual demonstration of a fractal known as the Cantor set.

What is the smallest thing in the physical universe? Can it be halved? Can it be halved again? If we know what the smallest thing in the universe is, and know it can't be halved for definite, that's fine. Problem solved. Or is it? What are the implications for the subject of mathematics which is (at least what I consider) the purest of all subjects. Math is always correct. Isn't it? If we conclude a particular constitute of a particular can't be halved in the physical universe, does this imply math, being the pure subject that it is, doesn't accurately correlate with the physical universe? What if the smallest constitute of the universe can be halved infinitely? Does this imply infinity is a reality and that mathematics is always pure in our understanding of the universe?

Moreover, I have wondered about the Big Bang theory in relation to this. If there was a Big Bang, does this imply the universe began with 0, or nothingness, into everything more than 1? Furthermore, everything in the universe is made out of energy. The first law of thermodynamics says energy cannot be created or destroyed. It can only transit from state to another. Does this imply energy has always existed, and perhaps 0, or nothingness, in the physical universe has never existed? Can zero exist? Is everything created from nothing, or at least 1 of something? Can zero exist and not exist?

In some ways, I am inclined to think infinity is a reality and 0 does not exist. What are your thoughts? Every question must have an answer: Does 0 exist?
edit on 20-1-2012 by IrnBruFiend because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:48 PM
no. it is man made concept. + and -, left and right, 1 and 2 , 0 and 1.
everything has an opposite, for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction yadda yadda.
from my understanding of physics theres ALWAYS an antiparticle, positive and negative.
like with this story there is 2 sides OF everything. and thats it.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:48 PM
Apply the bread slicing comcept to falling. If an object falls off a building, over a period of time, it will fall half way. Then it will fall half way again, and again, and again... So to test the concept, you could jump off a building, and tell me if you ever reach the bottom.

I jest... The point is.. all numbers are actually meaningless without a reference. 0 is typically that reference we assign to the beginning. consider the object you throw off the building. It begins from a realative height. But height from what? in the case of the bread, eventually you will be halving atoms, muons, quarks, etc... I'd rather jump off a building in that case. So I guess in short, dangerous things happen when you approach 0...
edit on 20-1-2012 by TomServo because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:49 PM
It exists, but it's not a number, it's a concept / baseline / potentiality.
It really depends on which mathematician you ask.

You can say there is zero "whatever" in this container but even that is a guess most of the time.
To say I have zero dollars can be absolutely true but it does not make 0 a number,

To me zero is like infinite neither is rational but it sure seems that way,
Isn't math fun?

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:51 PM
Zero exists at the center of a scale. It's the point of balance, equality and equilibrium.

I think if you use zero as a center point of balance, it is obvious that it exists using this definition.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:54 PM
S&F mainly for the subject.

There are a few select replies in there that contain much knowledge.

In regards to the question of zero, especially the concept of absolute zero, I'd have to say that I feel 0 does exist but it exists separately from the rest of the values. Obviously, once you have 0 you do not have a value any more. Any thing that is not 0 is a value. So, perhaps, a better statement from me would be that 0 exists separately from value, which is obvious.

Some people describe the Universe as being a state of 0, or that it was 0 before the Big Bang and then became a 1. I feel as though it might have always been a 1 value, however.

You can get a value from a value, but you can't get a value from a 0.

I apologize for my wording as this isn't making much sense even as I write it, but it is more-or-less symbology as opposed to math.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:55 PM

Originally posted by TomServo
Apply the bread slicing comcept to falling. If an object falls off a building, over a period of time, it will fall half way. Then it will fall half way again, and again, and again... So to test the concept, you could jump off a building, and tell me if you ever reach the bottom.

Okay: 100 metres; 50 metres; 25 metres; 12.5 metres; 6.25 metres; 3.125 metres. Hey, I'm actually getting pretty close to the ground now.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:55 PM

I have never had that perspective before. I can't see anyway to debunk that statement. If it exist it can be divided.
Something to give thought to.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:55 PM
I can have a local absence of "something." Yes, we have no bananas!"

There is an old argument between the concept of zero being infinity that has been debated for eons. It goes something like this:

Does god exist?
Yes.
Then he exists within the creation, and zero represents infinity.

Does god exist?
No, god does not exist within his creation. He is outside of his creation.
Zero is the vastness of the absent creator.

Good topic OP, I look forward to other responses.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 09:59 PM

Originally posted by ErroneousDylan
S&F mainly for the subject.

There are a few select replies in there that contain much knowledge.

In regards to the question of zero, especially the concept of absolute zero, I'd have to say that I feel 0 does exist but it exists separately from the rest of the values. Obviously, once you have 0 you do not have a value any more. Any thing that is not 0 is a value. So, perhaps, a better statement from me would be that 0 exists separately from value, which is obvious.

Some people describe the Universe as being a state of 0, or that it was 0 before the Big Bang and then became a 1. I feel as though it might have always been a 1 value, however.

You can get a value from a value, but you can't get a value from a 0.

I apologize for my wording as this isn't making much sense even as I write it, but it is more-or-less symbology as opposed to math.

Hey, thanks for posting. I had no doubts really that the Zeno's paradox existed somewhere in the ATS library. I was hoping my focus on zero would differentiate it somehow, however, it may not strictly speaking. I would have to agree with your thoughts on the issue. :-)

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:03 PM

my answer is that zero does exist but not in the same way as all the other numbers exist. It is like the seed that gives birth to everything but not to itself in its natural state.So its like pure potential, it hasn't become anything yet but it has the potential to do so. Once it does become something it isn't pure potential anymore.
I see it clearly with this picture. O is there almost like an invisible womb.

Only in our eyes we qualify objects as useful, but take the space in your own home. It there but we tend to not see it.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:04 PM
Infinity - The Sum of All Things Zero

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:04 PM

Oh, I apologize if you thought I was calling you out on un-originality. I was merely trying to share the extra bit of knowledge that I could with you.

I would hardly call mine a thread any way and I am glad that you have posted as the focus of zero holds much more merit. Very glad you did.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:13 PM

The problem with the falling concept is, while it would happen, we could conclude that it was merely us manifesting the result. If you apply Zeno's dichotomy paradox to anything motional, you result in an infinite amount of obstacles. This would imply that all motion is, in fact, an illusion (as covering an infinite amount of distance would be an impossibility).

Perhaps, your subconscious mind is manifesting all of reality, regardless of you being aware of it. When you walk forward you actually manifest the Universe moving towards you.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:20 PM

Originally posted by ErroneousDylan

The problem with the falling concept is, while it would happen, we could conclude that it was merely us manifesting the result. If you apply Zeno's dichotomy paradox to anything motional, you result in an infinite amount of obstacles. This would imply that all motion is, in fact, an illusion (as covering an infinite amount of distance would be an impossibility).

Perhaps, your subconscious mind is manifesting all of reality, regardless of you being aware of it. When you walk forward you actually manifest the Universe moving towards you.

System of Truth

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:21 PM

Originally posted by ancientthunder

my answer is that zero does exist but not in the same way as all the other numbers exist. It is like the seed that gives birth to everything but not to itself in its natural state.So its like pure potential, it hasn't become anything yet but it has the potential to do so. Once it does become something it isn't pure potential anymore.
I see it clearly with this picture. O is there almost like an invisible womb.

Only in our eyes we qualify objects as useful, but take the space in your own home. It there but we tend to not see it.

So, if 0 is infinity, then everything imaginable exists within it. If this includes nothingness before it is created, this would imply 0 can exist before something (which constitutes more than 1) does exist. This would work if time is linear allowing for things to BE created, allowing for a form of nothingness, or 0 before. If everything which could exist already exists, then there can't be a zero, in which case time would be non-linear to account for that. Perhaps. . .

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:22 PM

Originally posted by ErroneousDylan

The problem with the falling concept is, while it would happen, we could conclude that it was merely us manifesting the result. If you apply Zeno's dichotomy paradox to anything motional, you result in an infinite amount of obstacles. This would imply that all motion is, in fact, an illusion (as covering an infinite amount of distance would be an impossibility).

Perhaps, your subconscious mind is manifesting all of reality, regardless of you being aware of it. When you walk forward you actually manifest the Universe moving towards you.

Hmm. I think the problem with the falling concept is that it's dealing with finite realities. Your body is a finite reality, and the space between you and the ground is finite.

The subconscious mind, the universe and zero are infinite concepts.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:22 PM

Zero, mathematically does exist.Think of it in terms of limits. The problem you describe is like the equation f(x)=1/(2x). at x=1, the first division, you get 1/2. The second division, at x=2, produces 1/4 and so on and so on. So what if I do this an infinite number of times? The limit as x approaches infinity becomes 0. This is saying that over time, I will eventually reach the plane of infinity. When I do, the limit has been resolved and I have nothing left. Now, by all logical processes... I will never actually intersect infinity within the confines of time. So let us say that I instead divide by 2 every second of my life until I die... Well the numerical value of what number I would reach could be very low, perhaps some number thousands of times smaller than say 1E-1000000000000. At this point mathematicians say that this number is, in fact, equal to zero.

Another stance, what if we look at this in s statistical approach? What if I told you the probability of my cell phone becoming president of the united states is zero? Again we look to limits. In all actuality it is technically possible, though extremely improbable to a degree so small, we can go ahead and just call it zero.

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:34 PM
Forgive me if this comes across as rude, I assure you that is not my intent. Anyone who has ever taken a course in calculus has been exposed to both conceptual extremes involving derivatives and anti derivatives. Thank God I don't remember enough of how all of it works, but you are correct in one thing. If it doesn't make you stop and think, you missed something. In addition, I would add that one of the things that astounds me is the fact that Isaac Newton is credited as the "Father of Calculus" supposedly coming up with the framework in the mid 17th century!! Remember now, my math is admittedly not the best, but by my calculations that is more than six weeks ago!!!

Perhaps someone better versed in mathematics can offer more info or details or if I'm off course?

posted on Jan, 20 2012 @ 10:41 PM

edit on 20-1-2012 by randomname because: (no reason given)

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