The Platonist would argue that abstract ideas are mind independent, which conflicts with the idea that they depend on the mind of God, or even on us. As far out as we can detect, the laws of physics appear to be universal. A third line of evidence for a finite beginning comes from the laws of thermodynamics.


We begin with the first law, often called the Law of Conservation of Energy, which states that although energy can change its form it cannot be created or destroyed so that the total amount of energy in the universe is constant. Before discussing the second law I need to introduce some definitions in order to be clear about the technical applicability of the law.


A closed system is defined to be one in which no mass can transfer across the boundary of the system, though energy may be exchanged across the boundary. An isolated system is one that has no such exchanges whatever. The Second Law is a mathematical one that states that the entropy of an isolated system not in equilibrium will tend to increase over time, approaching its maximum value at equilibrium. Any change in an isolated system will be to maximize entropy.