Are dark matter and dark energy the gods of physics?

Hello to everybody out there with access to a computer,

After telling a fellow free-thinker that god was essentially a “Hey! What’s that? I guess god did it” fill in for what we don’t know he replied to me with what is a very good question, “Then aren’t dark energy and dark matter just the gods of astrophysics?” and I had to think about this one, but I did find one key difference between the two.

First of all, what is dark matter? Well, nobody knows for sure, but we do know about its properties, and it has been observed. It is a type of matter which only interacts with other matter through the fundamental force which is gravity, it does not interact through any of the other three forces.  It was first hypothesized in 1932 to account for the large difference between the spin of galaxies predicted by physics and what was actually being observed. At the speed that galaxies where spinning, stars should be flung from the galaxy willy-nilly, but they weren’t, so it was theorized that there was more matter in these galaxies than what we could see. The other line for the theory of dark matter is that the cosmic microwave background radiation (CMBR) shows that there should just be more stuff that what we could see. Dark matter is that extra stuff.

Dark energy is the same. It is an explanation for the accelerating expansion of the universe, and is thought to be the opposite energy to gravity, it makes up about 73% of the stuff in the universe. A lot less is known about dark energy than about dark matter but it explains a heap of the observations we have made about the universe.

Now, to the difference between god and dark matter and dark energy. The main difference, I think, is the intent of the label. When a christian or philosopher says something to the effect of ‘goddidit.’ (its one word now) then that is the end of their investigations, they look no more into the matter, because it is rude to intrude upon god’s mind and creation.
When the scientific community decided upon the two labels of dark matter and dark energy, they had already looked as deeply as the could have at the time into the subject, and after genuinely not being able to come to any other conclusion they decided that there was more stuff there, but that wasn’t the end of their endeavors. Labeling what they found was not the end for them, the label ‘we don’t know what this is’ was not the end of the road, when new technology or ideas come along they investigated the dark matter and dark energy with those new ideas, and we are starting to get a better understanding of these two things now. If when scientists were baffled by how galaxies stayed together they just said “Well, I guess god is holding them all together then, isn’t he?” Then we would know nothing about it.

That’s it for today’s post, I will leave you with a quote from Linus Pauling, “Facts are the air of scientists. Without them you can never fly.” Linus Pauling, Chemist, Biochemist, peace activist, author and educator of some note.

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10 thoughts on “Are dark matter and dark energy the gods of physics?

  1. I think god is most sophistificated system , rulling the universe at the sub atomic level, by them He knew everything anytime/anywhere. even a tiny vibration of your brain neuron are recorded .

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  3. Hey mate, .This was an excellent post for such a hard subject to talk about. I look forward to seeing many more excellent posts like this one. Thanks 487601

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  5. Good thing knowing that people asked and are asking the same questions I am asking today.
    For a long time I have been a skeptic, only believing in facts explained with science, cause I think God would not operate outside natural laws. I have been studying Vedic philosophy ( I am a Hindu ) and other common schools of philosophy in order to trace what people used to think about God. And one thing I wonder always, if there is any limit of knowledge about God ( I am kind of influenced by Lovecraft ).
    I have recently found a theory that says that the Eternal is the Truth, and everything else is false, because they don’t last forever. The world is false, because one day it will be destroyed. Are matter true? Seemingly not, they can be converted to energy. ( You don’t expect to convert a human cell into energy and convert the resulting energy back to human self, do you? ) Is energy true? Seemingly yes, it can be transformed. Is knowledge true?
    The Grand Unification of Forces has not yet been possible. Still there is a barrier between Universal and Quantum models. Maybe the quest will go on… because you cannot prove its impossibility or disprove it. And moreover, what’s left when we know all?
    I know my post is not science, but I posted it nonetheless. I have looked at things from scientific points before, now I look at my mind for changing mood.
    Keep up your quest! Good luck!

    • Hey, I’m no scientist either, and I often blog about philosophical questions (though I only really support philosophy of science) so your question is valid.

      I think a distinction between truth and Truth should be made. Truth with a capital ‘T’ is unchanging and absolute, the undeniable existence of god would be one example of Truth. In the opinion of science, there is no such thing as Truth. However, truth with a lower case ‘t’ is something science constantly deals with, things which are very very good at describing reality, but we can never know that it really is true. I’m blogging about truth soon, but back to your question.

      It may be correct that relating to Truth, nothing really is True, but everything we observe and interact with is true in the sense of truth.

      • There should be two things in Universe. Rational and Irrational ( I mean transcendental, much like pi, rather than e ). The truth is all about perfect rationals and approximation of irrationals within human sense. It is really painful to realize that truths may not be Truth, and we have still no way to know that.
        But again, when I think that Truth must be only one, and we are viewing the different sides of it, I think like someone optimistic.
        The journey through knowledge is what life is all about, as I think.
        Thanks for your reply.

        • Nobody in science claims to know the Truth, only our best approximation of it, or truth. No scientist really even is trying to get to Truth, because we want to be open to change (truth can change with new evidence, Truth cannot) if new evidence comes to show.

          To be honest, I doubt there is ANY Truth, because we can never know that our way of finding the truth is really accurate. Our best approximation for finding out the truth is science, because its been pretty close most of the time, and it only gets better. But we can never know that the truth of science really is the Truth.

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