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The Big Bang Theory
If you research whether the Big Bang and resulting heliocentric solar system, spinning
globe, and evolution are fact or theory, you will find that NO websites claim that it has
been proven. They use terms like "The most widely accepted view is.." or "It is thought
that..." and so on. The article shown below is one of many honest, unbiased explanations
you can find regarding this.
Scientific Proof Is A Myth
You've heard of our greatest scientific theories: the theory of evolution, the Big Bang
theory, the theory of gravity. You've also heard of the concept of a proof, and the claims
that certain pieces of evidence prove the validities of these theories. Fossils, genetic
inheritance, and DNA prove the theory of evolution. The Hubble expansion of the Universe,
the evolution of stars, galaxies, and heavy elements, and the existence of the cosmic
microwave background prove the Big Bang theory. And falling objects, GPS clocks,
planetary motion, and the deflection of starlight prove the theory of gravity.
Except that's a complete lie. While they provide very strong evidence for those theories,
they aren't proof. In fact, when it comes to science, proving anything is an impossibility.
Reality is a complicated place. All we have to guide us, from an empirical point of view, are
the quantities we can measure and observe. Even at that, those quantities are only as
good as the tools and equipment we use to make those observations and measurements.
Distances and sizes are only as good as the measuring sticks you have access to;
brightness measurements are only as good as your ability to count and quantify photons;
even time itself is only known as well as the clock you have to measure its passage. No
matter how good our measurements and observations are, there's a limit to how good they
We also can't observe or measure everything. Even if the Universe weren't subject to the
fundamental quantum rules that govern it, along with all its inherent uncertainty, it wouldn't
be possible to measure every state of every particle under every condition all the time. At
some point, we have to extrapolate. This is incredibly powerful and incredibly useful, but
it's also incredibly limiting.
Our best theories, like the aforementioned theory of evolution, the Big Bang theory, and
Einstein's General Relativity, cover all of these bases. They have an underlying quantitative
framework, enabling us to predict what will happen under a variety of situations, and to
then go out and test those predictions empirically. So far, these theories have
demonstrated themselves to be eminently valid. Where their predictions can be described
by mathematical expressions, we can tell not only what should happen, but by how much.
For these theories in particular, among many others, measurements and observations that
have been performed to test these theories have been supremely successful.
But as validating as that is — and as powerful as it is to falsify alternatives — it's
completely impossible to prove anything in science.
Even in theoretical physics, the most mathematical of all the sciences, our "proofs" aren't
on entirely solid ground. If the assumptions we make about the underlying physical theory
(or its mathematical structure) no longer apply — if we step outside the theory's range of
validity — we'll "prove" something that turns out not to be true. If someone tells you a
scientific theory has been proven, you should ask what they mean by that. Normally, they
mean "they've convinced themselves that this thing is true," or they have overwhelming
evidence that a specific idea is valid over a specific range. But nothing in science can ever
truly be proven. It's always subject to revision.
This doesn't mean it's impossible to know anything at all. To the contrary, in many ways,
scientific knowledge is the most "real" knowledge that we can possibly gain about the
world. But in science, nothing is ever proven beyond a shadow of a doubt. As Einstein
himself once said:
The scientific theorist is not to be envied. For Nature, or more precisely experiment, is an
inexorable and not very friendly judge of his work. It never says "Yes" to a theory. In the
most favorable cases it says "Maybe," and in the great majority of cases simply "No." If an
experiment agrees with a theory it means for the latter "Maybe," and if it does not agree it
means "No." Probably every theory will someday experience its "No"—most theories, soon
So don't try to prove things; try to convince yourself. And be your own harshest critic and
your own greatest skeptic. Every scientific theory will someday fail, and when it does, that
will herald a new era of scientific inquiry and discovery. And of all the scientific theories
we've ever come up with, the best ones succeed for the longest amounts of time and over
the greatest ranges possible. In some sense, it's better than a proof: it's the most correct
description of the physical world humanity has ever imagined.
Written by: Astrophysicist and author Ethan Siegel and published in Forbes on
November 22, 2017
Click Here for full article.
*Ethan R. Siegel is an American theoretical astrophysicist and science writer, who studies Big Bang theory.
He is a professor at Lewis & Clark College and he blogs at Starts With a Bang, on ScienceBlogs and also on
Forbes.com since 2016.