The Multiverse
by William Hamilton

from AstroSciences Website



New concepts and theories of Cosmology postulate multiple universes and multiple dimensions that give the universe its structure. However, the concept of a Multiverse is not new. Ancient Sanskrit and Chinese texts discuss the Multiverse.

“According to Vedic Cosmology, there are countless universes, which are clustered together like foam on the surface of the Causal Ocean. The universes are separated from each other by the shell that envelopes each universe. Although the universes are clustered together, interactions between the universes are impossible. Each universe is completely protected by an enormous shell. Thus, each universe has a boundary. The universe is ball shaped and surrounded by an eight-fold shell.


This shell is composed of primeval material elements in their most subtle manifestation. The shell consists of eight spherical layers in which each successive material element is manifested and stored. If we penetrate the universal shell consisting of these eight spherical layers, we will enter the universal globe and find a hollow region containing all the inhabited planets. “ (1)

The newest theory in physics is string, superstring, and M-theory. The new theories use extra dimensions of space beyond the three we are familiar with, but the 6 extra dimensions are not observable as they are compactified to such small dimensions, curled up in a tiny space less than the Planck length.

However, M-theory, an integration of string theories and beyond postulates extra extended dimensions like our familiar universe. The branes that compose a universe may come in multiples and interact with each other according to some theorists. It is even possible that these branes are spherical and compose shells as pictured in ancient Vedic Cosmology.

These strings can vibrate with different frequencies, and in so doing they create different types of particles. That's comparable to plucking a guitar to generate different notes. When physicists play the music of the cosmos, the faster a string vibrates, the more massive, or energetic, the particle created.

Whether M-theory will turn out as a unified theory will probably depend on the accuracies of its predictions and whether the theory is internally consistent and a reflection of physical processes. The idea of matter frequencies is not new and may give us some insight on another way to view the existence of multiple universes.



“Time is God's way of keeping everything from happening at once “
--Unknown .

Time is an elusive concept. We speak of the past, present, and future. Our memories confirm the existence of a past world, and our imaginations envision the future. The present is ever fleeting and cannot be caught. We know time subjectively and we measure its passage by the ticking clock, but what is time?

Time seems to be the persistence of space, energy, and matter. We measure this persistence by periodic motions. Any particle or planet that has a regular periodic motion can serve as a clock for the measuring of time. We consider the diurnal rotation of the earth as marking a day and we have arbitrarily divided the day into 24 hours.

We know that the rate of time changes with velocity according to the Special Theory of Relativity and at extremely high velocities we can determine the dilation of a second of time using the relativistic equation. The Time Dilation equation for Relativity is:

In the relativistic equations time is a fourth dimension. Could there be another dimension to time? Some physicists think so, but this leads to further paradoxes.

If we look at how we use time in physics, in units of seconds as determined by the vibration of atoms, then we are treating the vibration as a constant with a fixed period. What if there is a fundamental vibration? A string in M-theory has different modes and frequencies of vibration. Whether a string or ring, these vibrations can determine the character of fundamental physical particles. What if there were vibrations out of phase with our universe? Would they be detected? Could a time frequency define a universe?

Other than an extra extended spatial dimension for another universe, the possibility of frequency universes may also be a hypothesis that could ultimately be tested and allow for communication between universes.

One of the fundamental frequencies that can be attributed to sub-atomic particles is spin frequency. If we combine the energy of a photon and the energy of mass we could derive a spin frequency equation:

F = mc2/h

In this equation h refers to Planck’s constant. Both c and h contain units of time.

If these spin rates vary, it is possible that such matter will not interact with photons and thus be invisible from our perspective. Just like a spinning fan which speeds up until one can no longer see reflection from the blades.

This is conjecture at this point and experiments on changing spin frequency of elementary particles are not something our scientists have a handle on at present. Anecdotal stories of spectral sights that are seen in moments of psychic vision seem to imply the existence of invisible worlds. Metaphysical tradition states that these other worlds are vibrating faster than the world we sense. This is one possibility which can be modeled.


The extension of objects in space is something that is also fundamental to physics and most hyperdimensional physical theories, such as the Kaluza-Klein theory, string theories, and M-theory deal with the mathematics of extra spatial dimensions.

Spatial dimensions beyond the three of our everyday world are difficult, even impossible to visualize though some mathematicians have tried. If we visualize a cube in three-dimensional space, could we extend this to visualize a hypercube in four-dimensional space? The problem is that we define a dimension as orthogonal to other dimensions and we can only perceive three orthogonal extensions which we have defined as length, breadth, and width. We do not know how to rotate another 90 degrees to point to that fourth spatial dimension.

In M-theory the extra spatial dimensions may form closed loops that are as small as 10-33 cm (Planck length) and are said to be compactified.

“Many physicists hope that string theory will ultimately unify quantum mechanics, the theory of small-scale interactions, with general relativity, the theory of gravity. String theory requires at least nine spatial dimensions, so proponents normally claim that all but three of them are compactified and only accessible in extremely high-energy particle collisions. As an alternative to compactified dimensions, Lisa Randall of Princeton University and Raman Sundrum, now of Stanford University, describe a scenario in which an extra, infinite dimension could have remained undetected so far.

Other researchers have pointed out that if extra dimensions exist, the strong, weak, and electromagnetic forces and their associated particles might operate within a three-dimensional "subspace" of the higher dimensional world. Like beads on a wire that lies on a table, the particles would be restricted to their own set of dimensions, unable to move beyond them. But gravity is different: It consists of the motions of space-time, which includes all dimensions simultaneously. So Randall and Sundrum imagine a world with four spatial dimensions, where gravity exists in all four, but the other forces --and all of our direct experience-- exist in 3D. They say we live in a "3-brane" located at some specific position along the fourth spatial dimension.”

Many physicists believe that these extra-dimensional theories are very speculative and that ultimately we could not prove the existence of extra dimensions, but the rejoinder is that these theories are successful in predicting particle masses and energies. The future may bring new theories and discoveries.

Many Worlds Theory:

In 1957, Hugh Everett III proposed a radical new way of dealing with some of the more perplexing aspects of quantum mechanics. It became known as the Many-Worlds Interpretation.

According to this interpretation, whenever numerous viable possibilities exist, the world splits into many worlds, one world for each different possibility (in this context, the term "worlds" refers to what most people call "universes"). In each of these worlds, everything is identical, except for that one different choice; from that point on, they develop independently, and no communication is possible between them, so the people living in those worlds (and splitting along with them) may have no idea that this is going on.

The Many-Worlds Interpretation is an interpretation of quantum mechanics, and pertains to quantum events. But it also has implications for macroscopic systems like you and me. Although you may think that there are certain alternatives you would never choose, can you really be sure of that? There are a practically infinite number of versions of you, who have all split off at some time in the past from the path you are now following. There may be versions of you that split off five or ten years ago, or perhaps five minutes after you were born, to whom those choices may not seem unthinkable. But in a very real sense, those people are still "you" (but it can be argued that we should not use the word "are", or even "were"; we need to invent a new kind of tense...)

Bubble Universes:

Alan Guth’s evolving theory of an Inflationary Universe, one that rapidly expanded from the Big Bang, a fluctuation of the false vacuum led to the concept of many such universes bubbling out of the vacuum and our universe is only one of these bubbles floating around in a superspace.

Transdimensional travel:

The exciting world of science fiction contains many stories of transdimensional travel in space and time. Perhaps as we proceed in our understanding of how the universe works, we may someday realize these stories and they may become a real part of our technology. Already such marvels as photon teleportation and quantum computing are being explored in laboratories around the world. It is exciting to think that someday we may visit another universe which would have to be very similar if not identical to our own in physical principle if we are to survive the journey. We may also find doorways in time and visit other times.


(1) "Comparative Cosmology" by Akif Manaf J., Ph.D.





The Multiverse
Not one but an inflating/deflating

rhythmic diversity of many universes
by Martin Rees
Whole Earth Winter 1997

from WholeEarth Website


What is conventionally called "the universe" could be just one member of an ensemble. Countless other universes may exist in which the laws are different. This new concept of a "multiverse" is, potentially, as drastic an enlargement of our cosmic perspective as the shift from pre-Copernican ideas to the realization that the Earth is orbiting a typical star on the edge of the Milky Way, itself just one galaxy among countless others.

The multiverse could encompass all possible values of fundamental constants. I think cosmologists are starting, by better observations, to pin down the key numbers describing our universe. At the same time, physicists will soon be able to tell us which of these numbers are fixed by some underlying theory of the multiverse, and which are, in some sense, "arbitrary" outcomes of how our particular universe cooled down.


The latter numbers would not be the same in other universes. The universe in which we've emerged belongs to the "unusual" subset that permits complexity and consciousness to develop. Once we accept this, various apparently special features of our universe —those once adduced as evidence for Providence or design— occasion no surprise.

In addition, other universes may follow life cycles of very different durations: some, like ours, may expand for much more than ten billion years; others may be "stillborn" because they re-collapse after a brief existence, or because the physical laws governing them aren't rich enough to permit complex consequences. In some there could be no gravity; or gravity could be overwhelmed by the repulsive effect of a cosmological constant. Some could always be so dense that everything stayed close to equilibrium, with the same temperature everywhere. Some could even have a different number of dimensions from our own.

By mapping and exploring our universe, using all the techniques of astronomy, we are coming to understand —to a degree that even a decade ago would have seemed astonishing— our cosmic habitat. We have intimations of other universes, and perhaps ... we can infer the scope and limits of a final theory even if we are still far from reaching it — even if, indeed, it eludes our intellectual grasp forever.

If the universe isn't everything, what is it?

We need to specify carefully (especially when talking to philosophers) what we mean by "the universe." We must distinguish three things:

(i) What we can actually observe — i.e., what lies within the horizon of present telescopes.

(ii) The larger domain that may, one day in the future, be observable, or at least in causal contact with us (or our remote descendants).

(iii) "Everything there is" — which includes all other possible universes, though these may never be observable, even in principle (and have different laws, dimensions, etc.). This is what I've called the "multiverse."

There are two ways we can gain circumstantial evidence about whether other universes exist:

(i) When we understand the early stages of the "big bang" better, it may turn out (indeed I strongly suspect it will) that the theory would predict a whole succession (or even an infinite ensemble) of separate bangs, each sprouting into a separate universe.

(ii) The features of our universe that make it seem specially "tuned" for life can, I believe, be best explained by supposing that there is a whole ensemble of universes, governed by different laws. It is then of course not surprising to find one member of the ensemble that fits any requirement.

As our universe cooled, its specific mix of energy and radiation, even perhaps the number of dimensions in its space, may have arisen as "accidentally" as the patterns in the ice when a lake freezes. The physical laws were themselves "laid down" in the big bang.

Our universe, and the laws governing it, had to be (in a well-defined sense) rather special to allow our emergence. Stars had to form; the nuclear furnaces that keep them shining had to transmute pristine hydrogen into carbon, oxygen, and iron atoms; a stable environment and vast spans of space and time were prerequisites for the complexities of life on Earth.

Life in other universes?

It's hard enough to speculate about what life might exist elsewhere in our own universe, let alone in others where the physical laws are different! The basic laws allow an immense range of complex structures, which we can't necessarily yet envisage. Science fiction authors are the best at this, of course, and we can get more stimulus from them than from most scientists. Our universe is still near the beginning of its cycle—we are certainly not the culmination of evolution.


(I also make the point, which is unpopular with some people, that, though SETI [Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence] projects are worthwhile, I rather hope that life is now unique to our Earth. This may seem at first sight to make life an irrelevant fluke in our vast universe. But life "seeded" from Earth could spread through the galaxy and beyond, making our tiny Earth central to the cosmic scheme of things.)


I emphasize that biology is a harder subject than astronomy — astronomers deal with things that are big, but not specially complex. That's why it isn't presumptuous to aspire to understand them. A frog poses a more daunting scientific challenge than a star.

In the first and last chapters of my book where I briefly allude to the implications of a SETI detection, I speculate about whether there might be "superintelligences" who could visualize the Mandelbrot set as easily as we visualize a circle, and who could perhaps infer the existence of universes (e.g., with extra dimensions) too complex even for us to imagine. I like the analogy with the observer in a rowboat in the middle of an ocean. The sea may seem to stretch uniformly to the horizon, but there may be continents, "dragons," etc., far beyond.

Is cosmology relevant?

I think the concept of the multiverse erodes any basis there might have been for the theological "argument from design" [that the Universe is so perfect and complex that it must have a creator]. The concept of the multiverse could allow multiple universes of various levels of perfection or complexity. However, the argument from design is not itself taken seriously by many theologians. While science raises problems for certain "literal" beliefs, I don't think it has any further relevance to one's religious attitudes.


I mention briefly in the book that, just as Newton's contemporaries reacted differently to nature, so do present-day scientists. If being a scientist teaches me anything, it is that even a single atom is tough to understand. That makes me skeptical of anyone who claims more than an incomplete and metaphorical understanding of any deep aspect of reality.

Cosmology is of no day-to-day significance. But people have always been fascinated by "origins." Dinosaurs have been high in the popularity charts ever since Richard Owen discovered them in 1841. So, of course, has Darwinism ever since the 1860s. Cosmology fascinates people now, just as Darwinism has for more than a century. (I'd certainly get less satisfaction from my own researches if they only interested a few other specialists.)

I don't think modern cosmology carries any real message relevant to ethics. Cosmologists can hold almost any faith, or none. They may, however, have a special "ecological" perspective. The intricate biosphere, of which we're part, has taken several billion years to evolve. Our Earth is a speck in the universe. Planets are common, but those that harbor such complexity could be surpassingly rare, or even unique in those vast spaces. In terms of cosmic time-spans, we're not yet at the half-way stage — we're still nearer to Darwin's "simple beginning" than to the endpoint of the evolutionary process.


But it is collective human actions that will determine how, or even if, that process unfolds. Being mindful of these potentialities should deepen our commitment to understand our world, and conserve its web of life.