Steven Weinberg wrote a famous book, “The First Three Minutes” on the early stages of the universe. The same universe became transparent to light some 370,000 years later. There are other landmarks in post-Big Bang time going down to bewildering fractions of a second.
But the early universe was very hot, very dense, and gravitationally very different from the comfortable-to-us 1 g we experience today on the surface of the earth. Einstein has convincingly shown that spacetime is accordingly divorced from that human experience. Clocks, for example, are affected by gravity and satnav constellations have to take this into account. Did the first three minutes flow the same way three minutes flow in the here and now? I sent that question to Chris Impey’s online office hour and he kindly answered. It is a tantalizing response and one that will require substantial further study to fully appreciate – perhaps finally diving into the guts of GR. It makes me wonder even more intensely why we anthropomorphize those intervals the way we do.
Youtube Channel: Astronomy State of the Art
Composer Toru Takemitsu has set the general idea to music.
Youtube Channel: Orquesta Sinfónica de Xalapa