Where did the order come from?

4 10 2006


The evolution is a process from a simple system to a more complex system with higher ordered structures. Where did the order come from? Does the second law of thermodynamics prevent the creation of order?The second law of thermodynamics states that the entropy of a closed (isolated) system can never decrease. The entropy is a parameter for disorder. More order means less entropy. However, it must be noted that the second law applies to a “closed” system. Although the entropy of a closed system never decreases, the entropy of a local system within the closed system may decrease, as long as the total entropy of the closed system does not decrease. Therefore, ordered structures can be created in a local system. For instance, water molecules may combine to form more ordered liquid water. If the second law prevents the formation of ordered structures, we would never have rain.

Ilya Prigogine was the first to elucidate the creation of order from a non-equilibrium system. In 1977, he was awarded a Nobel Prize for his contribution in this area. According to his works, order is most likely created from a closed system which is far from equilibrium. The reason is quite simple. When a closed system is in the equilibrium state, its entropy has reached a maximum value. The entropy of the closed system cannot increase further. Hence, there is no room to compensate for the entropy decrease of a local system within the closed system unless it is accompanied by an entropy increase in a neighboring local system. By contrast, if a closed system is far from equilibrium, its entropy will increase dramatically, which can compensate for a substantial entropy decrease of a local system. Thus, ordered structures are more likely to be created from a non-equilibrium state than an equilibrium state.

In the previous article: I assumed that the spirit world began with an empty space which appears to be an equilibrium state. However, because of quantum fluctuation, it is actually not an equilibrium state. As mentioned in the previous article, the quantum fluctuation may create some kind of particles from the vacuum. The particle’s energy created from the vacuum is called the vacuum energy, which is the physical basis of the cosmological constant in Einstein’s cosmological equations. The vacuum energy will produce a negative pressure which shifts the system further from an equilibrium state. Although the attractive gravitational force among particles tends to contract the space, the negative pressure has an anti-gravity effect to push the space to expand. More space will create more vacuum energy and the whole universe may deviate further and further from the equilibrium state. The creation of the far-from-equilibrium state allows ordered structures to be formed.The above model for the origin of the spirit world is quite similar to the currently popular inflation model for the origin of our braneworld. In the inflation model, the negative pressure plays a critical role for the spectacular Big Bang. The vacuum energy density was assumed to be very large, thereby exerting an enormous negative pressure. Thus, our braneworld began with a state which is extremely far from equilibrium. In order to reach an equilibrium state, our braneworld expanded rapidly, resulting in dramatic increase in entropy. This can more than compensate for the entropy decrease due to the formation of ordered structures such as galaxies, stars, planets and the life on Earth.

In contrast to the gigantic Big Bang, the spirit world might begin with a whisper. Nothing spectacular had happened. No extremely large vacuum energy density was created, because quantum fluctuation can most likely create small vacuum energy density. As a result, the space expansion of the bulk universe should be a fairly slow process. The far-from-equilibrium state was gradually built up, due to accumulation of negative pressure as the space expanded. Therefore, the anti-gravity force of the negative pressure could be the ultimate source of all order.

Is the Big Bang a natural event or God’s works? In the next article, I shall show that the recently discovered “dark energy” may provide further information about the origin of our braneworld.




4 responses

5 10 2006


i just want to ask. what are you trying to do? whats the purpose of this ‘blog’

and as you pondered the question, i was wondering what the answer was to “if God created us, who created God?”

5 10 2006

He wasn’t created he was always there. He created matter, he isn’t made out of matter. He created the Laws of physics, he’s not bound by it

Hey is this A.rus from St. Ives high
This bitu’s blog. Who told you about the blog
Welcome, keep reading

5 10 2006
2 01 2007

Heya AJ
Thanks. Great blogs you have here, they’re very interesting.

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