Esteemed physicist Stephen Hawking has spent a majority of his life looking towards the stars hoping to determine what life was like before the Big Bang, the event that scientists say formed the universe. When speaking to fellow physicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson on National Geographic’s “Star Talk,” Hawking said something that stunned Tyson.
“What was there before there was anything,” Tyson asked Hawking. “The boundary condition of the universe … is that it has no boundary,” Hawking responded. But what does that mean, exactly?
Well, to understand this, one would have to understand how the universe is currently. Scientists believe that our universe is constantly expanding.
In turn, if one were to take the remote from Adam Sandler’s movie “Click,” and rewound back to when the so-called Big Bang began, we would shrink the universe back into the single atom it was before it expanded in the Big Bang.
According to Live Science, this single atom is referred to as singularity, a location where time and physics cease to exist.
Hawking told Tyson that there never was a Big Bang, and we only thought it happened from our perspective. “All the evidence seems to indicate, that the universe has not existed forever, but that it had a beginning, about 15 billion years ago,” Hawking said in a lecture last year.
Hawking then went on to explain his rationale. “Events before the Big Bang are simply not defined, because there’s no way one could measure what happened at them. Since events before the Big Bang have no observational consequences, one may as well cut them out of the theory, and say that time began at the Big Bang.”
As of now, Hawking did not add if he had any tangible evidence to back up a claim that would flip the astronomy and physics world on its head. To claim that the Big Bang was an event that never happened would need extraordinary evidence to back it up.