The lead story in New Scientist (22 March 2014) explains the physics behind the concept of multiverses and how such an understanding might be enhanced by the discovery that week of a method of peering even closer into the slivers of a second after the big bang . My poor head spun as I tried to get my mind around unfamiliar patterns of seeing, but I gather that observable distortions of wave patterns are now known not to be caused by gravity of other galaxies or telescope errors.
Accordingly, the pattern of these gravitational waves strengthen the idea that the universe is constantly giving birth to smaller “pocket universes”within an ever-expanding multiverse.
So where does one begin to think theologically about this? I looked no further than the same issue to discover that a 13th Century theologian, Robert Grosseteste, had written a treatise, De Luce, about the properties of light. “The work built on Aristotle’s idea that the motions of the stars can be explained by embedding Earth in a series of nine concentric spheres that make up the universe.” He proposed that the universe began with a flash of light, pushing everything out from a tiny point to a big sphere. He assumed a coupling of matter and light, with the density of the matter affecting waves of “inwardly propagating matter” thus resulting the form of the nine spheres.
Applying modern mathematics, a team from Durham University modeled Grosseteste’s process and found the multi-nested universe he postulated – thus also supporting the possibility of a multiverse.
Science and theology in apparent collusion in ways undreamed of in our post-Enlightenment era. Exciting!