“In an infinite multiverse, there is no such thing as fiction.” - Scott Adsit
et me take the liberty of saying that a majority of those reading this article will not be interested in scientific things regarding infinite universes, multiple dimensions and the space-time continuum. And I can completely understand why. Sometimes it’s not the subject you don’t like. Sometimes it’s the one teaching you or the one you’re referring from which makes you dislike it. This is why today I ask of you to spare me a few minutes of your life. I won’t talk about scientific things, nor will I mention some heavy terminologies. What I’ll tell you today is a brilliant little theory, which can actually change the way you perceive our world. So just go through this article, on my request, and prepare to be amazed. And after you’re done reading this, you’ll definitely want more. A lot more.
A concept image depicting never-ending parallel universes.
Now imagine a universe where you’re the president, and you have waged a war against an alien-life form, whose sole purpose is to deprive your planet of potatoes. You may be wondering what utter rubbish I just said. But if I tell you that this scenario is actually possible, how would you react? If I had to guess, then I think you’d be pretty surprised. So with this example I bring forth to you the multiverse theory. As fancy as it may sound, it’s actually quite simple. In layman terms, what this theory suggests is that the multiverse is a hypothetical space or realm consisting of a number of universes, of which our own universe is only one.Together, these universes comprise everything that exists: the entirety of space, time, matter, energy, and the physical laws and constants that describe them. So how exactly does the multiverse look like? There are 2 major explanations.
The first description suggests a bubble-like scenario. So if we picture our own universe as a bubble, it is sitting in a network of bubble universes, scattered in random layout in space. What's interesting about this theory is the other universes could have very different laws of physics than our own, since they are not linked.
The second theory, also known as the string theory, is a more plausible one. It envisions a multiverse in which our universe is one slice of bread in a big cosmic loaf. The other slices would be displaced from ours in some extra dimension of space.
The bubble theory, where our universe is one of infinite bubble universes in space.
Moreover, the concept of the multiverse is the basis of time travel. Let me explain through an example. Suppose you were to go back in time and kill your grandfather. This would mean that your grandfather never existed, and you were never even born, which further implies that you could never go back and kill your grandfather in the very first place. This is known as the Grandfather Paradox. The multiverse theory was developed to counter this anomaly. As per the multiverse theory, our timeline is like a single linear thread. If we were to jump from one point to another within this timeline, then we would be time-travelling. Now when we reach the second point, any changes made to the timeline will result in branching of two different timelines. One will be the original timeline, intact without any changes, and the other will be the timeline affected by the changes. So in terms of the grandfather example, if you do go back in time and kill your grandfather, then the timeline would split into two; one where your grandfather is alive and you exist, the other where your grandfather is dead thereby removing your existence altogether.
A graphic representation of the branching of timelines while time-travelling.
In a nutshell, the existence of the multiverse enables you to visualize a whole different universe where chairs can talk, boats can fly, there’s a raging war between pizzas and burgers, and the President is a talking umbrella. Every crazy little thing you can think about, its possibility in the multiverse is very much true. And that’s the power of science. It not only gives you the scope to explore, but it also gives you the wings to fly (may be actually in a different universe). All said and done, I can now at least say with conviction that you are a little more knowledgeable now than before you read this article. And at last, I’ll just leave you with one parting thought: “Somewhere, within the quantum foam of existence, amongst the very building blocks of reality, there exists a universe where you are……Iron Man.”