ANSWERS: 37
  • I think that space is infinite and eternal.
  • I think of it as a circle: No beginning or end...
  • If it is correct that we live in an expanding universe as usually described, then the farther away things get from us the faster they go. The edge of the universe is where they reach light speed, and once they reach the speed of light no further information about them can come back to us so for all practical purposes they disappear and the universe does NOT go on forever but ends about 13-1/2 billion light years from here.
  • Oh yes, I used to think about this all the time to the point where is almost drove me insane. When I was in my early teens I would wake up in the middle of the night in cold sweats contemplating the fact that everything we know exists is floating on a sphere in the middle of this dark abyss. I felt this emptiness, loneliness and isolation that was overwhelming. I needed to know what all of it was for. A few weeks later, (just before the point where I could no longer bear feeling these things) I met my future husband, and that emptiness and fear vanished. There is a movie about a similar situation called "Galaxies are Colliding" In this movie, "Adam" represents what I felt, and "Margo" represents my husband. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104316/
  • Whenever I think about space I think about the past - the light that my eyes sees from the stars is very very old - by that I mean - the light left that star millions of years ago and it's just now reaching Earth. If a star is 10 million light years away then, when I see it, that is how the star looked 10 million years ago. That constanly amazes me! Every night when you look up at the stars - It's like looking into the past - the very distant past. :) good question
  • I'm glad to know I'm not the only non-scientist who thinks about this stuff. Usually it's at night I think about it, how far away and how old everything my eyes can see is. Then other thoughts about it will cross my mind, the other planets, the milky way... pretty soon I'm cross eyed and just feeling how much (or little) is out there. It makes me breathless. Then I 'come back to Earth' and realize what a small part of the universe I am and how petty my problems seem. Yes, this is without drink or drugs. :)
  • When I go back home to Greece, I like to lie on my parent's flat roof and gaze at the stars. In the summer the sky is so clear and being in the country there's hardly any 'human' lights to interfer with the brilliant sparkling stars. I like to lie there and contemplate how huge the universe is, and that I and my problems are completely insignificant in the larger scale of things. Also, it amazes me that you can see the same stars from completely different parts of the world! There's these 3 bright stars in a row that I can see from Mani, Greece, and also in St Andrews, Scotland. That makes me think that one's never really all that far away from friends and family in other parts of the world...
  • I think that we're some science experiment and we're living in a bubble... lol crazy thoughts...but i do think it
  • the thoughts that are very confusing to me are 2: 1.if the universe never ends that means that there are endless galaxies and endless planets and endless stars and ......... carries on like that that is really confusing. but we know that the numbers are endless so why cant the universe be?? 2.if the universe stops at a certain point what is beyond the end, just emptyness??? plain white??? a big gap??? its just not logical what do u think?
  • The big bang theory bothers me. I can understand how it happened.. but what about before the big bang? We were an infinitely tiny point. But where was that point? In another universe? And what if, instead of the explosion, we just "zoomed in" on the point? And we're still an infinitely tiny point in another universe? And what if that universe is an infinitely tiny point in yet another universe? And what if that universe... Okay, I'll stop now. xD
  • I am an amateur observer but I think about the universe a great deal. It is about 13.7 billion years old or 13.7 billion light years across. There are lots of current theoretical and observational activities going on to find out what happens as our universe ages. There is also work going on in string theory to determine if we coexist with other universes or other dimensions with different laws of physics.
  • I always assume that my puny brain cant imagine what its like.. because experience of the real human world can not present this as a sensory expereince. The only way is to experience it is conceptually through a mathematical representation, which of course is a pretty poor comparison to actually being there, standing at the edge of the universe, and trying to stick your hand through the 'wall' to feel the nothingness. Unless you're going to use these thoughts for something useful, you're probably better off going crazy while pondering more worldly conundrums. :)
  • I'm not even going near that one. You're likely to drive half the users on AB into insanity with your deep thoughts.
  • I always think this. This is one of those thoughts that you have all your life to me. I mean, how long can it go??? How far- Its a crazy thought. I wonder. ANd I'm sorry that I didnt answer that question. I just wanted to put my opinion up.
  • ...As far as I'm concerned, stars and planets take the form of spheres...So I believe the universe is also a sphere. So if you were to go as far into the universe, you would end up where you started! And I too believe that our universe is inside another type of universe, and so on, and so on...
  • i completely understand! i do the same exact thing. Its like, if space end, its in something, but thats in something too....but how could it go on forever? its scary. it's like theres something that we just aren't allowed to know and thats why we haven't figured it out yet...
  • I am sure that everyone has realized how humble we really are when thinking on this scale... no thoughts... when i start thinking big like this friends tell me to shut up so i am concentrating on a little bit smaller scale and i will accomplish a few worthy goals... i feel bad for the people who are thinking to big like this all the time... some would say "far out" some would say "your heads in the clouds" some would say "i wonder how many containers there is"
  • "Considerations of the shape of the universe can be split into two parts; the local geometry relates especially to the curvature of the universe at points everywhere, and especially in the observable universe, while the global geometry relates especially to the topology of the universe as a whole — which may or may not be within our ability to measure. Cosmologists normally work with a given space-like slice of spacetime called the comoving coordinate system. In terms of observation, the section of spacetime that can be observed is the backward light cone (points within the cosmic light horizon, given time to reach a given observer). For related issues, see distance measures (cosmology). The related term Hubble volume can be used to describe either the past light cone or comoving space up to the surface of last scattering. From the point of view of special relativity alone, speaking of "the shape of the universe (at a point in time)" is ontologically naive because of the issue of relativity of simultaneity: you cannot speak of different points in space being "at the same point in time", thus you cannot speak of "the shape of the universe at some point in time". However, the existence of a preferred set of comoving is possible and widely accepted in present-day physical cosmology. If the observable universe is smaller than the entire universe (in some models it is many orders of magnitude smaller), one cannot determine the global structure by observation: one is limited to a small patch. Conversely, if the observable universe encompasses the entire universe, one can determine the global structure by observation. Further, the universe could be small in some dimension and not in others (like a cylinder): if a small closed loop exists, one would see multiple images of objects in the sky." Source and further information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shape_of_the_universe Further information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comoving_coordinates http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space
  • It can't go on forever because it's expanding, meaning forever isn't infinite because it's getting bigger. If it expands, it needs something to expand to, so it can't be infinite. But how did it get here, when, what's before it, and what's outside of it are the big questions.
  • Yes, we must ponder these things from time to time, I myself love thinking about that sort of stuff!
  • It's frightening at times and I like to reassure myself that I am safe on this little planet of mine. Sometimes I have to stop looking up at the sky at night because it might give me too much anxiety.
  • Me too. It's incomprehensible how it goes on forever, but they say it's still expanding. So what's outside of it that it's expanding to? Is it simply nothing? The fact that we'll probably never know is what makes it so interesting. And the fact that some higher being is reading our ramblings and chuckling, probably.
  • The Univers its not new (day) and its not old (night). The Univers never had to Wake up it was never Sleeping. Just like the Univers there is no end to knowledge, they are infinit. There was never a point that made up the Univers. Unlike the Univers we choose to believe things, the Univers has nothing to believe it knows all and see's all, so IT is INIFINIT. We as humans love to make up points so that we think we know some thing. Thats what a point is for to repersent the knowing of some thing, but the univers is not like that u can not put a point on it, you can not even know every thing about it, thats because its the one that knows every thing why would it ever need two of it self? It is the true whole.
  • Don't sweat it! If it ended at "some point," there would have to be something behind or after that end, and that "something" (even if it was nothing) would be part of it; thus, the Universe is endless, period.
  • I used to hit my intellectual wall regularly and feel that crazy effect as well. Not so much nowadays, though. I try to visualize much as Einstein did. Not the same, but similar travels through mind/space/time. Space probably has limits with pockets of mass such as our Universe. Why not? Why should we be in the only inhabited area of the WHOLE. I use WHOLE instead of Universe because "We" have limited the word Universe by saying that we exist in this "Visible Universe". So I use the word WHOLE to describe all existing matter. If I could have one question answered it would be "What caused the beginning of it all." It is impossible to comprehend the size of the WHOLE. I hope we someday find answers to all questions on our minds but doubt it very much. We must have faith because we will never travel to all corners of the WHOLE. Therefore we must believe the answers provided to us by whomever makes the various discoveries brought about by the questions. I am beginning to confuse myself so will stop here.
  • I used to hit my intellectual wall regularly and feel that crazy effect as well. Not so much nowadays, though. I try to visualize much as Einstein did. Not the same, but similar travels through mind/space/time. Space probably has limits with pockets of mass such as our Universe. Why not? Why should we be in the only inhabited area of the WHOLE. I use WHOLE instead of Universe because "We" have limited the word Universe by saying that we exist in this "Visible Universe". So I use the word WHOLE to describe all existing matter. If I could have one question answered it would be "What caused the beginning of it all." It is impossible to comprehend the size of the WHOLE. I hope we someday find answers to all questions on our minds but doubt it very much. We must have faith because we will never travel to all corners of the WHOLE. Therefore we must believe the answers provided to us by whomever makes the various discoveries brought about by the questions. I am beginning to confuse myself so will stop here.
  • Why does this question remind me of the following? LOL
  • Same, i go crazy thinking about it too, i think about it and i get lost, there just so much....space... no wonder its called space, thats exactly what it is!
  • I believe everyone has, at one time or another, in their life.
  • I always think of space in terms of the universe that God created. You are right we can't size the dimensions of space; where it begins and where it ends. We don't have to be crazy thinking about its vastness. All we need to do is just to trust in our great God who is in control of this vastness.
  • It could loop at some point.
  • It's called Pi. And in relation to space... And lots of things actually. It really isn't all that practical or realistic.
  • I think its curved so that if you could keep going long enough you would wind up back where you started.
  • I work in a planetarium and observatory, and part of my job is to try to explain the workings of the cosmos in terms that most people can understand. Let me try to explain. The universe, as far as we can tell, is finite, but unbounded. We are limited to what we can know about the universe by the volume that we can see. This is a sphere of about 13.7 billion light years. This doesn't mean that this is how big the entire universe is, merely it is how far we can see. There could be another planet, inhabited by intelligent beings, just like the earth, 13.8 billion light years away. They may look up into their night sky and see the wonders of the stars. But we can know nothing about them and they nothing about us, because there has not been enough time since the beginning of space and time for light to have passed from one to the other. What we do know about the universe is that it seems to be finite, but unbounded. There is a limited amount of space, but there is no edge to it. Space may fold in upon itself. When dealing with the four dimensions that we are familiar with, height, width, depth, and time, it can be very difficult to describe what I mean. An analogy may be helpful. Imagine a mobius strip. If you don’t know what a mobius strip is, it is very easy to construct. Take a piece of 8 ½ by 11 sheet of paper. Along the long edge of the paper cut or tear a strip one inch wide. Take both ends of the long strip and give one end a half twist. Then tape both ends together. You have now created a mobius strip, and they have some very unusual properties. A mobius strip has only one side and one edge. You can prove this very simply. Take a pen and start in the middle of the strip. Draw a line down the strip parallel to the edges. Soon you will find yourself on the "opposite side" from where you started. Eventually you will come back to the point where you started, proving the strip has only one side. Take a highlighter and start on one edge. Mark the entire edge with the highlighter. Again, soon you will be on the "opposite side" of the edge you started at, and eventually you will come back to where you started. This shows that it has only one edge. In a similar way the universe may fold in on itself, so that as you move in one direction, always going straight, you may eventually end up back where you started. In short although the universe is of limited size, it has no “edge” on which there is “the other side”.
  • Its one of my all time favourite questions, what is beyond the beyond? i agree, there has to be something on the other side of the edge of it. The more I ask the question, the less I know. Its a little like, the more I learn, the less I know. Scientists continue to try and give that answer, that , yes our universe is expanding, but has a measurable end point............. thats all fine, but whats on the other side of the end point?????? they just dont seem to get it.
  • The Universe has no observable or measurable boundary that is with complete certainty. However, that does not imply that space is infinite. The observable (or measurable) space that we call the Universe is isotropic, demonstrates homogeneity and is generically flat. The fabric of our Universe is weaved by Size, age, contents, structure, and laws in a quantitative fashion. It seems the more research that is conducted in understanding it's origins and purpose simply leads us to more questions. Personally I am not follower of the big bang - nor do I believe that our Universe is a Mobias strip, the only thing I am certain of is that it is massive and beautiful and elegant. In a Universe that is baron, massive and seemingly unending your organic existence and intellect is somewhat of a rarity - something very special! Maybe this contemplation in itself is like a Mobius strip.
  • "Like space goes on forever, but what if it ends at some point. Then that means that it is in something, and thats in something." I took a class called Astronomy Bizarre, all about black holes, possibility of life on other planets, worm holes, things like that -- and we talked about this a bit. The professor said, okay, imagine you get to the edge of the universe. And it stopped. So you scratch the paint a bit, and there's a brick wall. And you drill through the brick wall. Either the brick wall is infinite, and the universe is infinite because it includes the brick wall, OR you eventually get through the brick wall and there's space on the other side and the universe is infinite because it includes all that too. His suggestion (for this and pretty much everything we talked about) was to just relax your brain and believe it because your brain will believe it if you don't try to force your brain to believe it.

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