Physical and Kabbalistic Cosmologies, Part II

Serpent Lord
Reproduction from J. Campbell's Occidental Mythologies.

Me at San Jose State University, San Jose CA, October, 1994

We start this part with the account of the creation of the World given by the Lurianic School. In the beginning there was the Ayin, the Nothing, which we cannot imagine. There was then _ the Ayin Sof, the Infinite, the Without End almost equally unimaginable. _ _ The Ein Sof Or , the Light without End, was the first manifestation of the Divine in a way we can attempt to try to imagine! This Ein Sof Or filled all existence. Out of the Infinite which existed, Void (vacuum) Tehiru was brought into being. Then, Tzimtzum, Contractions, allowed the Void to create Vessels out of the Infinte Void, which Vessels filled It. These Vessels were filled with the Ein Sof Or . But They could not contain this Light, Without End, so that the Void became unstable. This led to the breaking, Shattering Shebirah of the Vessels. Sparks were sent off in all directions. These fragments of the Vessels containing bits of the Ein Sof Or are the Shells or Husks Qillipot. They are thought as evil since they are preventing the other parts of the Divine Light from returning. This process is referred as Light or energy Falling into Matter.

Our task is to heal Tikkun , Repair the World, to find the Sparks of the Ein Sof Or in the Husks of the Material World. We need to raise them to their Divine Source. This is _ the Tikkun HaParzufim , the Healing of the Face (of God), as we are doing _ the Tikkun HaOlam , Healing the World.

Let us give now the account of the Big Bang of physics. At the very beginning, we don't know what there was. A singularity in space-time created the World and space-time itself. The conditions were singular, or mathematically very ill-defined, so that we can't really try to attempt to talk about the point at time=0! We imagine that infinte amounts of energy were coming out, as that infinte singularity in space-time was being transformed into infinte amounts of matter. So this explosion propelled out matter and energy, thus giving rise to the Hubble expansion we are still observing today. To see what happened, we start observing the Universe just after the Big Bang, at time t=10^-40 s, when we are more confident of our mathematical formalism. I will use Weinberg's idea of looking at frames at different times, observing what's in the World.

  • We start then at frame 0, at t=10^-40 s. The One force we know about has broken spontaneously into the Four forces we know now, by the Higgs mechanism. The World is filled with Energy , no particles can exist for long.
  • Frame 1 is at t=10^-2 s. The expansion and Einstein's equations give us a simple relation between the time of the Universe and its Temperature. At this time, T=100,000 Million deg. K. At this time, it is cool enough that quarks and gluons have condensed into neutrons and protons. Also, we have electrons, photons, neutrinos, W^+-, Z's, the building blocks mentioned earlier. As the World is expanding, it is cooling. At this point all the Energy is in radiation, as it is too hot for anything to form. The number of neutrons = number of protons - we will keep track of these numbers, since they determine the fate of the World.
  • Frame 2, t=0.12s, T=30,000 Million deg. K. Now, the number of neutrons is 38%, number of protons is 68%. It is still in the Radiation Era, like above.
  • Frame 3, t=1.1s, T=10,000 Million deg. K. We are getting now a decreasing density, so that the neutrinos are not in thermal equilibrium anymore with e^-, e^+, photons. At this time the Weak interaction becomes important. We have now 24% neutrons and 76% protons.
  • Frame 4, t=13.83 s, T= 3,000 Million deg. K. e^- e^+ are getting bound. The Temperature is still that of photons, and it is low enough that simple nuclei could form. But first, we need to form deuterium=neutron+proton, and from this, tritium, helium, etc. But, deuterium is easily broken up at this temperature, so no nuclei yet. We have now 17% neutrons and 83% protons.
  • Frame 5, t=180s, T=1,000 Million deg. K. It is cool enough now for tritium and helium^3 to form. We have now 14% neutrons and 86% protons. It is still too hot for deuterium to stay together, though.
  • After this time, it gets cool enough for deuterium to form, so we then get lots of it, We have now 13% neutrons and approximately 87% protons.
  • Frame 6 is at t=34 minutes 40s, when T=300,000,000 deg. K. At this point in the life of the Universe we have photons, deuterium, protons, electrons. It is to hot for atoms like hydrogen to form. By now, almost all the neutrons have weak decayed into protons, so we have about 10^-2% neutrons and about 99% protons.
  • Much later at about t=700,000 years, when T=20,000 deg. K we can form atoms, since it is then cold enough. Once we can form hydrogen, we can form matter in bulk, so gravity can come in, and galaxies can form. After this point we don't have a very good idea how things proceed, though.
  • We find very interesting parallels in these two models of Creation. What I find amazing is the long time that separates them and their striking similarities: the Lurianic Creation was developed in the 1600's, the Big Bang this century.

    Physical and Kabbalistic Cosmologies, Part I
    Reproduction from Z. ben-Shimon ha-Levi's The Way of the Kabbalah.

    (To the Ladder/Tree)

    Copyright © 1994-today Ovid C. Jacob & and Mira Zussman.