While I was busy writing nonsensical posts during the ‘thon, the SEB regular known as the Angry Astronomer was busy working on more productive works on his own blog. Particularly a good entry where he takes on some common misconceptions about the Big Bang. Here’s a small taste:
2) The Big Bang theory doesn’t explain what caused it
This is another big one I see a lot. If the Big Bang was the beginning, then what could have caused the Big Bang? You’ll notice my paraphrase above didn’t include anything about this. Pretty big hole eh?
Not really. The Big Bang theory doesn’t say anything about what caused it because, well, it doesn’t need to. Theories don’t try to explain everything, just what evidence is available and pertinent. Asking the Big Bang (and Evolution) to do more than this is a double standard. After all, the theory of Gravity doesn’t explain where mass came from. The Germ theory of disease transmission doesn’t explain where germs came from. Electro-magnetic theories don’t explain where charge comes from. Atomic theory doesn’t state where atoms come from.
So while it might seem like a piece of the puzzle is missing, as far as this single theory is concerned, it’s not really important. The origin of all these other pieces requires separate theories, with their own evidence, which are being worked on, but often times, are still in their infancy (ie, brane theory to explain the precursors to the Big Bang, Abiogenesis to explain the first life… )
Note that that isn’t even the full text of that particular point so be sure to go read the whole thing. I’ve been following AA for awhile now and he’s got a nice little blog going so be sure to check out his other entries as well. Good stuff.