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can anything be both infinite and finite?


brzozowskir2
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It has been claimed by many philosophers, theologians, and scientists that it is illogical to clain that anything infinite can be contained in something finite. For example, the human mind, something finite and imperfect, could never fully understand or comprehend or "become" God because God is infinite. Just like 5 L of water can't be contained in a 4L container, something of infinite volume cannot be contained in any finite container.

However, think about the number line. Between the 2 fixed points 0 and 1, there are an infinite number of points. This infinite amount of points is contained in a very finite space. If every point between 0 and 1 was a step, and you tried to walk from 0 to 1, you could never get there, regardless of the fact that the end does exist.

So, why can't this same idea be applied to the universe. Even if we consider that the universe is infinite in volume and matter, why can't we also think that it may be containable?

The part that really gets me is if the universe is contained in something larger than itself, what could it possibly be contained in. If we say that the universe is finite, then it follows that it must be contained in something larger than itself, but if we assume that it is infinite, then is it possible that it may be contained in something much smaller than itself, like the infinite amount of points be contained between 0 and 1?

I'm confusing myself, I better stop. But does anyone have any thoughts?

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It has been claimed by many philosophers, theologians, and scientists that it is illogical to clain that anything infinite can be contained in something finite. For example, the human mind, something finite and imperfect, could never fully understand or comprehend or "become" God because God is infinite. Just like 5 L of water can't be contained in a 4L container, something of infinite volume cannot be contained in any finite container.

However, think about the number line. Between the 2 fixed points 0 and 1, there are an infinite number of points. This infinite amount of points is contained in a very finite space. If every point between 0 and 1 was a step, and you tried to walk from 0 to 1, you could never get there, regardless of the fact that the end does exist.

So, why can't this same idea be applied to the universe. Even if we consider that the universe is infinite in volume and matter, why can't we also think that it may be containable?

The part that really gets me is if the universe is contained in something larger than itself, what could it possibly be contained in. If we say that the universe is finite, then it follows that it must be contained in something larger than itself, but if we assume that it is infinite, then is it possible that it may be contained in something much smaller than itself, like the infinite amount of points be contained between 0 and 1?

I'm confusing myself, I better stop. But does anyone have any thoughts?

 

There are infinite points on a finite line, infinite lines on a finite plain, infinite plains in a finite volume, infinite volume in a finite 4 dimensional "space". etc

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You can quite frequently put infinite things in finite things, for example a fractal is a type of line of infinite length, but contained in a finite area. Like in the example of the line segment with infinite points, however, this is also a case of things with less dimensions inside something with more dimensions.

 

On a different note, here's a thought: what's the difference between "as many as you like" and "infinite"?

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On a different note, here's a thought: what's the difference between "as many as you like" and "infinite"?

Depending on your question..

 

Infinite is infinite.

 

"as many as you like" is finite, just not declared. For instance, if I tell you "take as many dollars as you like!" you can claim that 'as many as you like' is infinite (though it's still a problem; make it very very large and finite), but if I tell you "you can dunk your back side in that lava-well as many times as you like" your answer will probably be zero, which is finite.

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There can be potential infinity in finite things, {infinite number of points on a line, infinite number of fractions in a number}, mathmatically. Physically, that seems tough to grasp, thought that may just be the limits of the brain to conceive infinity in finite physicality so we resort to mathmatics for understanding.

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