Thursday, May 28, 2015

BM 10 The Time Conumbrum


I am satisfied that i can deal with time.  The central tool is to understand that time itself is not continuous.  This allows all time manipulation to become an addressing problem in a 3D manifold. This will be a huge leap for most of you.

This part of the text works through the history of the time debate. 

The take home though is that making adjustments back in time does have consequence or we would not bother.  Yet it is something that a united mentality could safely execute...

Professor Lowell studied linear features on Mars with his twenty-fourinch telescope and developed theories about the habitability of Mars, based on his estimate that the planet had an average temperature of 48°F. The Lowell Observatory made consistent observations of the Martian canals and Lowell personally maintained that the linear features were indeed of artificial origin.

When spacecraft reached Mars, scientists expected to discover what the canals really were but they found that there were no canals and almost no straight lines on the planet at all. We have to conclude that either the Martians have camouflaged them rather well over the last century or, infinitely more likely, a generation of astronomers were imagining things at the limits of their optical telescopes.

The idea that there could be real Martians was a popular worry that was brilliantly used as the plot by H G Wells in his novel War of the Worlds.

A wave of mass hysteria gripped thousands of radio listeners in October 1938, when a dramatization of this book was broadcast and led unsuspecting listeners to believe that an interplanetary conflict had started, with invading Martians spreading death and destruction across New Jersey and New York.

The next day the New York Times reported on the scare:

‘A weather report was given, prosaically. An announcer remarked that the program would be continued from a hotel, with dance music. For a few moments a dance program was given in the usual manner. Then there was a “break-in” with a “flash” about a professor at an observatory noting a series of gas explosions on the planet Mars. News bulletins and scene broadcasts followed, reporting, with the technique in which the radio had reported actual events, the landing of a “meteor” near Princeton N. J., “killing” 1,500 persons, the discovery that the “meteor” was a “metal cylinder” containing strange creatures from Mars armed with “death rays” to open hostilities against the inhabitants of the earth.’

By far the majority of experts now accept that if advanced life of any sort does exist in places other than the Earth, we will almost certainly have to look towards interstellar space in order to find it. But our greater knowledge of outer space has not quelled the public’s appetite for close-encounter stories. 

The famous Roswell incident is believed by many to be an extraterrestrial encounter. It is said that a UFO crashed in the New Mexico desert in July 1947 and the debris was removed to an army base in Fort Worth, Texas.

A US government cover-up is said to have tried to pass off the event by stating that the debris was actually part of a radar unit from a weather balloon.

Rumours about the existence of secret alien bases located in various places, such as the Moon, under the ocean, or in a tropical rain forest have persisted. Some people have gone so far as to claim that they have worked on secret UFO projects for the government and seen UFOs at military installations. 

According to a recent poll, some three million Americans believe that they have encountered bright lights and incurred strange bodily marks indicative of a possible encounter with aliens. Psychological tests confirm that these ‘abductees’ are rarely psychotic or mentally ill in any usual sense of the term.

It makes us wonder whether humans are simply prone to having some kind of neural dysfunction involving optical illusions. Maybe the decline of old-style belief in mythical creatures like fairies and goblins and in religious imagery such as angels or the Virgin Mary, has caused people to have new kinds of hallucinations. Where people once thought they saw the ‘little people’ dancing in a circle of light or a heavenly messenger with a glowing halo, the bright lights in their heads are now translated as alien contact.

Whilst the debate continues about everything from Roswell to crop circles, it has to be admitted that there has never been any proof of alien contact – and it is, of course, impossible to prove the negative. However, the probability of contact does seem extremely small, given the vast amounts of space and time involved.

The solar system, of which the Earth forms a small part, is only one of many even in our own corner of our galaxy – the Milky Way. Astronomers have identified stars that definitely have planets orbiting them, so the state of affairs within our own solar system is certainly not unique. An interesting finding has been that larger, gaseous planets in other star systems, much like Jupiter and Saturn in our own, have been discovered to have an orbit that is always very close to their host star. From these early indications it seems that our planetary arrangement is unique, which just might not be accidental.

It is a fact that if Jupiter were not just over five times more distant from the Sun than we are, advanced life on Earth would not exist. This giant planet is positioned as a ‘catcher’ of space objects that would otherwise impact into the Earth. A dramatic example of this was seen in July 1994, when twenty-one fragments of the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 smashed into Jupiter at speeds of up to half a million kilometres and hour, creating fireballs larger than the planet Earth.

If we are right about the Moon being constructed to act as an incubator, the manufacturer would have been pleased to note that Jupiter and Saturn were in very unusual and perhaps unique outer orbits. If it were not so, they would have to have caused them to be in this position – which would suggest that the entire solar system could have been designed for the benefit of humankind!

Whether or not our solar system is a happy accident, it is estimated that there are a thousand million other stars in our galaxy alone, any one of which could possess a planetary system where life might have evolved and even flourished. Beyond our galaxy there must be stars with Earth-like planets beyond counting. Bearing these facts in mind, it surely appears unreasonable to believe that only our tiny little green planet is alone in producing a self-aware species.

However as we have previously noticed, setting out to actually meet our intergalactic or extragalactic cousins seems hopeless, even if we knew where they were located. But this may not be the end of the story.

Time is not a fixed concept. If a person could travel close to the speed of light, they would experience a severe slowdown in time, relative to a slower moving object. At light speed, time stops completely, relative to something moving at a much lesser speed. Because of this ‘time stop’, a photon that travels at the speed of light would not experience distance and time in the normal way. So from the photon’s point of view, it could go from one end of the Universe to the other instantly, while from an outside point of view it would take about thirteen billion years.

Still stranger, scientists have found the need to speculate about the existence of a particle called a ‘tachyon’ that can travel faster than light. But theoretically at least, travelling faster than light would result in an individual going backwards in time. So the tachyon is something of a mystery at the moment, with scientists having to calculate the activity of these particles with time working in reverse.

So, just maybe, there will be ways to work around the problem of travelling at speeds close to, or even above, the speed of light.

Next, there is the possibility of intergalactic communication using what physicists call ‘quantum entanglement’, that can happen to sub atomic particles. If quarks with identical spin are paired and separated, and the spin of one is changed, the other changes its spin instantaneously to match that of its partner – no matter how far apart they are separated. Einstein called this phenomenon ‘spooky distance’, and it suggests that some force, not yet understood, must be capable of travelling in folded space in some manner or may not exist at all in space as we know it, and therefore not be restricted to the effects of travel.

It is therefore not inconceivable that other advanced creatures have found a way to bridge the chasm of space-time between their planet and ours. But we are not able to deal with such technology yet, even though we can envisage its existence. Right now, as far as we know, we cannot greet them face to face, but as we pointed out in Chapter Eight it might be possible to listen to them or even talk to them

. As we have also noted, recent publications by leading academics such as Paul Davies, Christopher Rose and Gregory Wright, are suggesting that physical artefacts are a far better way of communicating across the vastness of space. Paul Davies has stated that a far more reliable way for any alien species to contact us would be to leave artefacts in the vicinity of planets likely to spawn intelligent life that, given sufficient advancement on the part of such a developing species, it could not fail to recognize.

And so, the question that confronts us is: Could aliens have built the Moon from the very substance of the Earth in order to allow our development, and then left a physical message of what they had done in the very dimensions and movements of the bodies?

We believe that the message we have detected in the Moon and its relationship to the Earth is so amazingly differentiated from the ‘background noise’ of all other measurements that it forms a breakthrough for humanity. Certainly, if a message of such clarity and consistency was received from beyond our planet by means of good old-fashioned electromagnetic radiation, the personnel at SETI would be jumping up and down with joy.

If the message from the UCA is attributable to aliens we have already speculated that its motive could simply be a desire to progressively transform the matter in the Universe from a chaotic condition to an ordered state of self-awareness. One can image that, given enough time, all of the matter in existence could be united in a single thinking entity. Astronomer Royal, Sir Fred Hoyle, wrote a novel called The Black Cloud38 in which he speculated about a cloud of space matter that had such instantaneous interaction between its particles it was, effectively, a single living entity. Could this be the long-term goal for all intelligence? If so, we will need to understand what has happened in the case of our own planet much more clearly so that we will be able, in due course, to take part in this ultimate mission for the Universe.

If we accept alien intervention in our distant past, we have to ask how these visitors from elsewhere could have known that the fruits of their labours would come to have ten fingers and therefore work in base ten. A possible answer is that all successful life forms come to intellectual maturity with these characteristics, but the whole notion does seem odd.

Furthermore, there is the problem of how the alien Moon builders came to use Megalithic geometry and kilometres to incorporate elements of the message.

This too seems unusual. What is more, as we have observed, there appear to have been visits to the Earth by the UCA in much more recent times. This would suggest that the alien visitors, having manufactured the Moon, would have had to return to the Earth over four billion years later in order to pass the Megalithic message onto the developing human culture in Britain and France. We find it difficult to imagine a culture or society that could endure for such a vast period of time. It is much more likely that such a civilization would have gone the way of inevitable evolution, managed somehow to destroy itself, or simply grown bored with the whole experiment in only a tiny fraction of the time involved.

If readers wish to believe that aliens are responsible for this message, we would have to say that this is a theory worthy of further investigation. For our part, we can see no direct proof that this has been the case, and there seem to be factors involved that make the alien hypothesis unlikely to be the answer we are seeking. However, there is a third, and altogether more amazing option yet to consider and it is one that appears to fit the bill in every respect.

‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness’
God: Genesis 1:26

For those people who call themselves creationists, the Bible is the word of God. But which Bible is the authentic one? There are countless versions of the books contained in both the Old and New Testaments and the oldest versions have been carefully dissected to reveal the different styles of authorship woven into the fabric of the stories. Two of the three main traditions – the Yahwist and the Elohim (a word meaning gods in the plural) – talk of a specific sequence of creation. This deals with the arrival of plants, then good and evil, then animals and next women.

The third, priestly tradition has a sequence of creation that is rather more in line with modern theories about evolution. First comes light followed by heaven, the Earth (land and then sea), vegetation, then the Sun, Moon and stars. Next come birds and fishes and finally man and women together.

An interesting fact is that the first two traditions use the Hebrew yàsar for the creative act of making man, which has a simplistic or crude implication of being shaped, as a potter models clay objects. Both also use the word demut for likeness, which implies similarity or looking the same. However, in the Priestly tradition, (the version that has God talking to his wider council about making man in their image) He uses a very different word. In this case the word bàrà is used for the creation of man and this is a word that carries a more complex, creative value. Next we find selem as the chosen word for the use of the creator’s image, which means something more like a precise duplicate. Selem is a term directly related to the Canaanite word for Venus that is associated with resurrection and therefore rebirth of the individual.39

We find it strange that a supposedly singular God is talking to others around him, even before humans have been created. He has already made the Sun, Moon and Earth and supplied the oceans along with plant and animal life – but to whom is he talking? And why do they all, whoever ‘they’ are (including God Himself) apparently have heads with noses, ears and eyes, bodies with arms and legs and presumably even genitalia?

Why is God, along with his undisclosed team, human in appearance?

It is not our place here to try and make sense of Judaeo-Christian myth, but we came to find the idea fascinating and surprisingly plausible. The Bible has been edited, changed and added to by a succession of people who wanted it to support whatever they deemed to be true. Early Christians even accused the Jews of having incorrect versions of their own scriptures when they were found to differ from the texts the early Christians had doctored. In terms of Christianity, it seems unlikely that a passage that involves God talking to others before he created humanity would have survived, had it not been for an important aspect of the new Christian faith. This was the ‘new’ concept of the trinity – where God is said to comprise three separate entities including his living human mode as Jesus.

We are not attempting to claim that the Bible provides us with any evidence for the authorship of the message we had discovered, but a close look at the situation did lead us to a tantalizing thought.

Could the only known intelligent life force in the Universe be responsible for the message? To be blunt: Could modern humans have built the Moon?

There is obviously one very substantial issue of logic to address here, which is obviously the time gap of 4.6 billion years between the creation of the Moon and the present era. Clearly, if humanity created the Moon, this would have to be explained. In reality, this may not be the obstacle it appears to be, because leading scientists are currently debating the possibility of travelling backwards in time. Virtually everyone speculating about time travel is agreed that the associated mathematics indicates it should be possible. We will come to the problem of travelling in time shortly, but for the moment let us put the issue of the time gap aside and consider the reasons why the Moon’s message might be from closer to home than we ever dreamed could be possible.

The hypothesis we originally laid down was:

1. The Moon was engineered by an unknown agency circa 4.6 billion years ago to act as an incubator to promote intelligent life on Earth.

2. The unknown agency knew that humanoids would be the result of the evolutionary chain.

3. That unknown agency wanted the resulting humanoids to know what had been done and they left a message indicated by the dynamics of the Moon and its relationship with the Earth.

Firstly, it has to be acknowledged that there are no other possible candidates that we know of anywhere in the Universe. God exists by faith and not as a result of evidence, and aliens may or may not exist. It is entirely possible that we are totally alone, either in our part of space or in the whole of the Universe. In any case, who would have more to gain from a life-producing planet than the very intelligent creature that has most benefited from its existence, namely humanity?

The question of how the UCA could have known that the intelligent species on Earth would evolve with ten fingers and therefore adopt base-ten arithmetic, at a time when the Moon was exactly where it is today, is answered instantly if humanity is the agency we are seeking. The mystery simply dissolves if we are that unknown creative agency.

Another difficult issue to explain has been how the UCA could possibly have used Megalithic and metric units as part of the message. Once again, this scenario resolves the problem. Indeed, it adds to the message because it makes it very clear that the UCA ‘has to be’ humans from our future, travelling back in time to manufacture the Moon.

The motive for the message becomes obvious and absolutely necessary. If humans do not become alerted to the need to manufacture the Moon as an incubator for life – we would not be here.

However, there is the problem we can’t avoid. Humanity might be described as having been reasonably technologically advanced for around 100 years. The Moon came into being some 4,600,000,000,000 years ago. We have to admit that this does represent a bit of a gap.

The answer can only be time travel.
Tomorrow’s yesterday
Time is perceived as flowing like a river from the past into the future and we are all riding the wave in one direction. But what if it were possible to head back upstream? Not necessarily for humans themselves, though that cannot be ruled out, but for pre-programmed super-machines; equipment so sophisticated that it could engineer planetary-sized objects. After all, most spacecraft today are unmanned units that carry out all kinds of experiments, take photographs and even analyse samples of alien rock. It would not therefore be hard to imagine a project team from our relatively near future designing and deploying ‘chronobots’40 to construct key elements of the past.

But is time travel a dream or a possible reality?
For most people such thoughts cause headaches. The question that anyone will reasonably focus upon is: If humans went back in time to build the Moon so that there would be humans – where did humans come from? It seems like an impossible loop – but is it stranger than the age-old conundrum about the chicken and the egg? Logically, it is necessary to have a chicken to lay an egg, yet one needs an egg for that chicken to have sprung from. A creationist would have no problem as their God manufactured the first chicken with an ability to lay eggs. The evolutionists would be a little sneakier and say that a creature that was not quite a chicken laid an egg that produced a mutation that was the first proper chicken. So, the egg came first.

It really is not worth losing sleep about such problems, as the only way to deal with any paradox is to simply accept it.

Today, we are programmed with a need for neat, predictable Newtonian-style logic. Simple cause and effect – so that if ‘A’ happens ‘B’ will result. People everywhere seem willing to accept the idea that we were either created by God, or that we exist due to a mega-series of flabbergastingly beneficial accidents. Look at these two possibilities again and then ask yourself if it is any more farfetched or unreasonable to suggest that, as a species, we went back to create our own life-giving planet system and ultimately ourselves? (For some reason, to the religiously-minded, the insurmountable question of ‘Who made God?’ can be safely ignored, as can the ridiculous improbability of an infinitely flowing stream of beneficial serendipity to non-believers).
Humans throughout history have generally had a psychological need for a higher authority, whether it be a supreme deity or the laws of physics. Thankfully, that is not necessarily the whole story at all.

The debate about time travel goes on amongst the experts as it has done for many decades. Generally speaking, philosophers don’t care for the idea, for a whole host of logical or illogical reasons, though some of them are coming round in the face of the latest evidence. Meanwhile physicists are becoming increasingly certain that time travel is possible, and they have the mathematics to back up what is far from being a simple hunch.

Whilst the idea of travelling into the past is so counterintuitive for most people that they just cannot get their heads around it, a physics heavyweight and a philosophy heavyweight from Oxford University have another view. They once teamed up to confront the apparent paradox that seems to forbid the highly fluid present penetrating the apparently frozen structure of the past. David Deutsch and Michael Lockwood have the problem in context; saying about the quantum physics of time travel: ‘Common sense may rule out such excursions – but the laws of physics do not.’41 Most people have a real problem ith the idea of time travel, and the so-called ‘grandfather paradox’ encapsulates why the idea appears to assault common sense so strongly. The idea is that if a young man was able to travel back from the present time to, say, 1950, he might kill, or cause his grandfather to be killed before his own father was born. If this were to happen, it would mean that he could not exist and therefore could not have killed his grandfather. The problem just goes around in apparently impossible circles. The only solution appears, at first view, to be to consider all such journeys as utterly impossible – if for no other reason than to save us from terminal confusion!

However, Deutsch and Lockwood are not so easily fazed and they remain unconvinced about the need to protect our sensibilities from issues of reality just because laypeople tend to become confused. In an article published in Scientific American they discuss another apparent time paradox that deals with the possibility that even knowledge does not seem to require a beginning.

They refer to the grandfather-killing scenario as being an ‘inconsistency paradox’ and then they discuss another type of apparent time-traveller violation of logic that they call a ‘knowledge paradox’. This is an apparent violation of the principle that knowledge can only come into existence as a result of problem-solving processes, such as biological evolution or human thought. In the example, they talk about a hypothetical art critic who goes back in time to visit a famous artist from the previous century who, the critic realizes, is only producing very mediocre work. The time traveller shows the painter a book containing reproductions of his later and greater works, which he then proceeds to carefully copy in every detail with oil paints onto canvas. This means that the reproductions in the book exist because they are copied from the paintings and the paintings exist because they were copied from the reproductions. So, where did the inspiration come from?

‘This kind of puzzling paradox,’ say Deutsch and Lockwood, ‘once caused physicists to invoke a chronology principle that, by fiat alone, ruled out travel into the past.’ But they believe that travelling into the past does not violate any principle of physics, however much it seems counterintuitive to the average person. Furthermore, the Oxford duo state that quantum-mechanical effects actually facilitate time travel rather than prevent it, as some scientists once argued.

They explain the basics of the concept of time by pointing to Einstein’s special and general theories of relativity where three-dimensional space is combined with time to form four-dimensional space-time. Within this, everyone’s life forms a kind of four-dimensional ‘worm’ in space-time, with the tip of the worm’s tail corresponding to their birth and the top of the head to the person’s death. The line along person’s (or object’s) ‘worldline’ and each moment of time is a cross section of that worldline.

Einstein’s general theory of relativity predicts that massive bodies, such as stars and black holes, distort space-time and bend worldlines. This is believed to be the origin of gravity – and, for example, the Earth’s worldline spirals around that of the Sun, which in turn spirals around that of the centre of our galaxy. Deutsch and Lockwood propose that if space-time becomes really distorted by gravity some worldlines would become closed loops where they would continue to conform to all the familiar properties of space and time in their own locality, yet they would become corridors to the past. They state:

‘If we tried to follow such a Closed Timelike Curve (or CTC) exactly, all the way around, we would bump into our former selves and get pushed aside. But by following part of a CTC, we could return to the past and participate in events there. We could shake hands with our younger selves or, if the loop were large enough, visit our ancestors. To do this, we should either have to harness naturally occurring CTCs or create CTCs by distorting and tearing the fabric of space-time. So a time machine, rather than being a special kind of vehicle, would provide a route to the past, along which an ordinary vehicle, such as a spacecraft, could travel.’42

So, world-class physicists like Professor Deutsch can conceive of potentially giant spacecraft voyaging backwards in time. Perhaps such craft could be filled with chronobots that could even self-replicate to take on a task that might take hundreds of thousands, or even millions, of years. Building an object the size of the Moon with pre-programmed orbital requirements is unlikely to be a quick exercise. But time would literally be on their side.

There are various ideas about how these time-travel enabling CTCs might be formed. The mathematician Kurt Gödel found a solution to Einstein’s equations that describes CTCs within a rotating Universe and they also appear in solutions of Einstein’s equations describing rotating black holes. But there are many practical problems including the evidence that naturally occurring black holes are not spinning fast enough. Maybe a technique will one day be found to increase their rotation rate until safe CTCs appear.

The physicist John A Wheeler from Princeton University has famously suggested shortcuts through space-time that he calls ‘wormholes’, and other scientists have shown how two ends of a wormhole could be moved, so as to form a CTC.

Professor Deutsch has become a champion of the many-Universes theory, first put forward by Hugh Everett III in 1957,where everything that can happen does happen. For this reason, the supposed paradoxes of time travel simply do not exist. In the scenario where the man kills his grandfather, he does not exist in the one single Universe where the murder is committed, but he does in the ones where he fails to assassinate his forebear.

Deutsch and Lockwood conclude that there is no scientific objection to time travel, saying in their article: ‘The idea that time travel paradoxes could be resolved by “parallel Universes” has been anticipated in science fiction and by some philosophers. What we have presented here is not so much a new resolution as a new way of arriving at it, by deducing it from existing physical theory… These definitively dispose of the inconsistency paradoxes, which turn out to be merely artifacts of an obsolete, classical worldview.’

They appear to be suggesting a loop in time that has a twist in it so that contact is made with a near identical parallel existence, through which the time traveller can arrive at a time and place that always has them present.

Their thought-provoking article concludes with the authors pointing out that science says time travel is theoretically possible. As a result, the onus is on those who wish to argue otherwise to prove their case:

‘We conclude that if time travel is impossible, then the reason has yet to be discovered. We may or may not one day locate or create navigable CTCs. But if anything like the many-Universes picture is true – and in quantum cosmology and the quantum theory of computation no viable alternative is known – then all the standard objections to time travel depend on false models of physical reality. So it is incumbent on anyone who still wants to reject the idea of time travel to come up with some new scientific or philosophical argument.’

And many experts agree. Physicist, Matt Visser of Victoria University of Wellington, has compiled a short list of the time travel opportunities that have turned up since Einstein showed us how to warp space-time. He has said that Einstein’s general theory of relativity not only allows time machines to exist, it is ‘completely infested with them’.

Others fear the concept of time travel, even though they have not been able to demonstrate that it cannot be done. ‘I think most of us would like to get rid of time machines if we possibly could,’ says Amanda Peet of the University of Toronto. ‘They offend our fundamental sensibilities.’

The only argument that has been made against time travel comes from the famous Cambridge phycisist, Stephen Hawking, in the form of his ‘chronology protection conjecture’. This suggestion boils down to the notion that the Universe might have a built-in time cop, so whenever anyone is on the verge of constructing a working time machine the time cop turns up and shuts the operation down before it has a chance to damage the past. However, there are no time cops evident in the laws of physics, so, at the moment, the chronology protection conjecture is simply wishful thinking.

As far as our scenario is concerned, humans exist because, at some future point, we will return to the time when our planet was a young lump of unstratified matter and then we shall make the Moon. 
Once complete, our Moon worked its magic and life began, evolving eventually into an intelligent, ten-fingered species that uses Megalithic and metric units. The message had to be built into the very nature of the structure or else we would miss the cue to understand what we need to do.

But how can we do it and when will we do it?

Ronald Mallett, a Professor of Theoretical Physics at Connecticut University, already believes he has found a way to create a CTC or time machine using light. He has identified that a circulating beam of light, slowed right down to a snail’s pace, may well be the key to the door of time travel because, although light has no mass it does bend space. The realization that time, as well as space, might be twisted by circulating light beams caused Mallett to team up with other scientists at Connecticut University in 2001, with the intention of building a prototype, saying, ‘With this device time travel may become a practical possibility.’

Mallett decided that if he added a second light beam, circulating in the opposite direction to the first, it would increase the intensity of the light enough to cause space and time to swap roles. Inside the circulating light beam, time runs round and round, and, what to an outsider appears to be time becomes like an ordinary dimension of space. A person walking along in the right direction could actually be walking backwards in time – as measured outside the circle. So after walking for a while, you could leave the circle and meet yourself before you have entered it.

However, it turns out that the energy needed to twist time into a loop is enormous, and when Mallett reviewed his progress he realized that the effect of circulating light depends on its velocity: the slower the light, the stronger the distortion in space-time.

By strange good fortune, Lene Hau, a phycisist at Harvard University, has slowed light from the usual 300,000km per second to just a few metres per second, and almost frozen its progress completely. Mallett was ecstatic saying, ‘The slow light opens up a domain we just haven’t had before. All you need is to have the light circulate in one of these media.’

Maybe current scientists will crack the problem of time travel but it seems logical to expect the necessary instructions to be contained in the deeper layer of the Moon’s message. However, it seems likely that black holes may be at the root of the technology required.

The black holes of deep space are the gravitational remains of dead stars. They are super-dense, bottomless pits in both space and time that are capable of sucking in almost infinite amounts of material, including light. Everything a black hole swallows gets compressed into an unimaginably tiny central region called a ‘singularity’ in which the atoms are crushed into an unmoving whole. If the Earth were to become as dense as a black hole, it would be smaller than a golf ball. (And they say you can’t compress water!)

There seems to be no way to get any information about what is happening inside a black hole, as even light is trapped inside. However, Cambridge physicist Stephen Hawking proposed a way in which black holes do radiate matter and slowly dissipate until they eventually disappear in a final mega-burst of radiation.

Amazingly, scientists are becoming increasingly confident that they will be able to create black holes on demand using the new atom-smashers due to come on line in 2007. It is believed that the new Large Hadron Collider (LHC) being built astride the Franco-Swiss border west of Geneva by the European Centre for Nuclear Research (CERN) will be able to create black holes at the rate of one per second. The LHC is an accelerator which will bombard protons and antiprotons together, with such a force that the collision will create temperatures and energy densities not seen since the first trillionth of a second after the big bang. This should be enough to pop off numerous tiny black holes, with masses of just a few hundred protons. Black holes of this size will evaporate almost instantly, their existence detectable only by dying bursts of Hawking radiation.

This work is at an early stage but it may well prove to be the beginnings of a platform that could drive the search for the technology to enable time travel.

If humans from our future did travel to the distant past to create the incubator that would produce our own species, it does make complete sense of the message left to us. We have to imagine that our ability to complete such an awesome task must be hundreds or even thousands of years ahead of our current level of capabilities. However, what if the instructions of how to proceed were contained inside the message itself? If this was the case, the development time might be cut to a minimum.

Maybe a question we should be asking ourselves is why the message was so carefully timed to reveal itself at this particular time. Could it be that we have so far only seen what is little more than a ‘waving flag’ to alert us to a greater message that tells us exactly what must be done in order to fulfill our own destiny? Maybe the central pattern revealed by the mutual orbits of the Earth and its Moon and, quite separately, by the relative sizes of 366.3 x 27.3 = 10,000 is the most fundamental key of all.

At this stage there are two entirely separate questions that need to be answered:

1. To what are we to apply the cipher?

2. If humans created the Moon as an incubator for life, where did the seeds for germination come from?

The answer to both final elements of this ultimate riddle may well rest in the same place: DNA.

The secrets of the Genome

The Human Genome Project, completed in 2003, was a thirteen-year mission to unravel the secrets of the minute data store that carries all the information needed to make a human being, what we call DNA. The key goals of the project were to:

1. Identify all the genes in human DNA, of which there are believed to be approximately 20,000–25,000

2. Determine the sequences of the three billion chemical base pairs that make up human DNA Professor Paul Davies has published an idea that strikes a real chord with the findings laid out in this book. He does not criticize the people from SETI for constantly sweeping the skies with radio telescopes, in the hope of stumbling across a signal from deep space, but he is realistic about the chances of success.

He points out that it is inconceivable that aliens would beam signals at our planet continuously for untold aeons, merely in the hope that one day intelligent beings might evolve and decide to turn a radio telescope in their direction. And if the aliens only transmit messages sporadically, the chances of us tuning in at just the right time are infinitesimal.

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