The Big Bang
On Wednesday, the 10th of Elul (September 10, 2008), the largest and most ambitious scientific experiment ever to be conducted by humans, also mentioned in our last month's newsletter, began at the CERN laboratory in Switzerland. The purpose of the project is to reconstruct what scientists believe happened in the first billionth of a second after the "the Big Bang" – the scientific theory about the creation of the world. There are 40 Israeli scientists on the research team. In an interview with one of the major Israeli newspapers, one of them, Professor Eilam Gross of the Weizmann Institute of Science, described the "Big Bang" theory in terms amazingly consistent with the story of the Creation in the Torah and Kabbalah literature. The following is an excerpt from what he said:
The Big Bang is the physics theory according to which the universe originated at a single point. The Big Bang refers to an event that occurred at the very point that the universe was created. At that moment, the physical dimensions of time, space and size that we know today were also created. In time, the universe began to spread out. A millionth of a second after the great explosion, the light of the ancient fireball was entrapped in a special state called quark-gluon plasma. Since then the universe has been cooling and spreading at a great speed.
Professor Giora Mikenberg of the Weizmann Institute, head of the Israeli team on the project, who has been working on it for 20 years, further explains the concept:
Quark-gluon plasma is a rare mixture of particles known as quarks and gluons. During those first fractions of a second after the Big Bang, the material was a burning, compressed mix of particles, moving in all directions and colliding with one another. When the universe spread, the temperature began to drop, just as regular gas cools when it spreads quickly. The quarks and gluons slowed down until some of them could attach to one another for small periods of time. Due to the strong force of attraction among them, the quarks and gluons grouped in a fixed way and created protons, neutrons, and hadrons.
We briefly review the reference to just some of these concepts in the Torah and the Kabbalah:
"The origin of the universe at a single point"
According to the Kabbalah of Ha'ari, the emergence of the worlds began at a single point that occurred after the first "contraction" of the "infinite light" that filled all space prior to the Creation. According to the Kabbalah, the beginning of the creation of the physical world was in the formation of the primal material, and immediately after its formation the dimension of time was created. The process continued with the formation of the different types of individual creatures, including the different materials of which they are composed and time allotted to each of them.
"The ancient light trapped within plasma"
As early as Rashi's commentary of Genesis, we find mention that the Creator hid the ancient light of the six days of the Creation. Since then, this light has been referred to in Kabbalah literature as "the hidden light" (or ganuz). The hidden light is revealed in the teachings of the Kabbalah and Jewish mysticism to those who learn it, and will be revealed to all humanity in the future.
"The universe spread out and cooled"
Kabbalah literature explains the interpretation of the name of the Creator,SH-D-I: she'amar le'olamo dai – He who told the world enough(!). According to Jewish-Kabbalah tradition about the creation of the world, in the beginning, the heavens stretched out infinitely, until the Creator told them "enough"(!) and stopped the spreading of the heavens and the entire universe – a process parallel to restriction, cooling and gelling.