This is my brain on an hour and a half of sleep


And an hour and a half the night before, as well. Last night I tried all kinds of visualization to lull myself to sleep. Any peaceful thought that arose, I followed it wherever it went. Sometime around 3 am the image of a bubble with a hazy surface popped into my head. It was sitting on the ground and was about 5 inches across. I picked it up and, holding it in my hands, started to grow it in my mind. I decided it was a bubble of non-existence. Inside the bubble there was nothing--no matter, no light, no sound, no time or space. No universe. The dimensions of the bubble were defined by the space outside of it, not by anything within it. It grew until I was lying on the surface of it, arms and legs splayed.

And then I thought--what if black holes are really bubbles of non-existence? We know that matter and light spiral into them and are never seen again. We know stuff is attracted to them by gravity, but what is gravity anyway? A weak force that acts at a distance, sure, but how? We don't really know. We can describe it, but we don't really understand it. And what if the force that attracts matter and light to black holes is something completely different anyway? Why not?

We know the universe is expanding, but expanding into what? Non-existence? Is it necessarily expanding uniformly? Couldn't there have been Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities, or Richtmyer-Meshkov instabilities, or Kelvin–Helmholtz instabilities, that resulted in pockets of non-existence being surrounded by universe? Could the universe be like Swiss cheese, riddled with holes?

Just a thought. Anyway, it failed to put me to sleep.

August 2009

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