“We were now back to an enduring Cosmos, but with significant changes in structures. It is durability but without stability – an interesting concept. Did not some unknown Hindus postulate that the universe renews itself periodically? There are two strands in this belief. The first strand says that at the end of a ‘day of Brahma,’ Earth (and other worlds) are temporarily dissolved (another view is of a temporary suspension). A ‘day’ is equal to 4.32 billion human years. At the end of another 4.32 billion years, representing a ‘night’ of Brahma, regeneration commences. Dissolved, suspended, crunched?
Brahma is the Creator God. The other strand of this belief says that at the end of Brahma’s life, equal to 311.04 trillion years, the whole Cosmos is dissolved. After a great cosmic rest period equivalent to the duration of Brahma’s life, yet another creative cycle will commence, but with another Brahma creating another Cosmos. What a quaint vista this is. What kind of mind conceived it?
It all sounds so simple. When and how did these concepts originate? Why? What was the trigger? These speculations promise long-term durability, but with vast changes in structures occurring in a sequenced path. What I was taught as a boy – that the universe is without a beginning or an end – seems to be quite correct. Continuity is assured, but with gaps in the creative and regenerative process. For some reason, the firefly’s winks of light come to mind.
So, speculative modern science and speculative ancient Hindu philosophy concur to some extent, except that the specificity of the Hindu view makes me wonder how such a measure had been worked out, and by whom. Were there astronomers of great skill on Earth before the Great Universal Flood or other Earth-wide inundations or other forms of catastrophe?”
(Eons of Earth-time would surely have been needed for a culture or civilisation, wherever it was based on the globe, to observe carefully and repeatedly the events and episodes of Nature; to evolve a means of recording these; calculating the probabilities of occurrence in the future of those events of significance to the culture; and speculating and formulating explanations which would grow into a coherent cosmology. Consider how long it has taken to move from the Stationary State Theory to the probably transient Big Bang Theory.
It is also fascinating to consider that the creator of all that is in the Cosmos may be a projection from that background ever-existing ether (the Ocean of Consciousness?), to be replaced by another after 311 trillion Earth years. Projection upon projection? What kind of minds conceived all this?
Or, was it all taught by visitors from deep space?
The above extracts from ‘Musings at death’s door’ indicate that, since the certainty of what we think we know is somewhat elusive, it does no harm to look at another culture’s concepts about the Cosmos and our place in it.)