Although we may lack the means to conclusively prove one way or the other, it seems highly unlikely that the universe is “everything that exists”. But what exists outside of it? Sometimes I think about the bacteria that live that within our guts. There would be no way for such creatures to ever comprehend what lies beyond the realm of our guts. They simply lack the cognitive capacity and means of perception necessary to understand something like a room full of people each possessing their own individual ‘bacteria universes’ in their own respective guts. The idea that more exists than the universe in which we reside is the basis of the notion of the multiverse.
Speculation as to what exists beyond our universe is unscientific and possibly futile. A handful of scientists refuse to even engage in such discussions due to their inevitable inconclusivity. However, many thinkers have speculated upon what else might be out there. Proponents of the multiverse claim that numerous universes like ours and unlike ours exist. Cosmologists like Max Tegmark and Brian Greene have even attempted to categorize the additional universes that likely exist outside of our own. As if our enormous ever-expanding universe were not mysterious enough, infinite additional complexity is added into the equation when the multiverse is taken into consideration.
God and the Multiverse
Assuming the existence of multiple universes brings up countless other questions. One such question is where God fits into such a model (assuming the existence of God). This is a complicated inquiry because any possible answers about God’s role in the multiverse would rest upon assumptions made about the nature of the multiverse. Take for example the simulation hypothesis, which claims that our reality is likely one of countless computer-simulated realities created by individuals living in a base reality. In this case, would our God be the programmer who created and oversees our specific simulation? Or would our God be the God who created the base reality? To many religions, the notion that God is simply a really good computer programmer would be heretical. However, such religions might also define God as the creator of the universe. This is the nature of our dilemma. Now consider the possibility that our universe is a cell within the brain of an enormous goat. Is our God the goat or the creator of the goat? This question can be asked of just about every possible conception of the multiverse. I recently proposed this dilemma to my rabbi. My rabbi was open to the possible existence of multiple universes; however, to him, God is still the infinite being who presides over all of such universes. God serves as the initial catalyst responsible for all of existence, and the nature of the existence He created may forever be unbeknownst to us.