A universe is a multi-dimensional structure in meta-space. An ultra-universe is composed of group of nested universes.[1]

Structure[edit | edit source]

From a four-dimensional perspective, a universe is the shell of a hollow sphere that encompasses everything just above and below a skein - surface of a hypersphere. The energy grid form the wall of the shell and set the boundaries of the universe. Between the skein and the energy grid walls is hyperspace.[2]

Younger universes are within the sphere, past the infraspace energy grid. Older universes are without, through the ultraspace energy grid. The energy grid prevents travel between universes.[2]

The younger universe under the Culture's universe is antimatter-dominant instead of matter-dominant.[3][4]

Life cycle[edit | edit source]

In theory, the evolution of a universe may be directed if modifications are made immediately after its creation.[5]

From a seven-dimensional perspective, the life-cycle of a typical universe may be traced over a hollow torus, with a Cosmic Centre at the centre of the torus. A universe appears as a flat circle, and its edge is always on the torus. As a new universe expands, its diameter increases, and it moves up and over the rim of the torus. The universe reaches its maximum size along the outer surface of the torus, before contracting as it returns to the torus' centre. The universe collapses when it arrives back at the Cosmic Centre, where it is recycled to create new universes.[2]

Universes born from the same Cosmic Centre tend to have similar typical life-spans.[2]

Universes may escape the typical life cycle and live longer; they eventually dissipate in meta-space and their fragments may be drawn into other Cosmic Centres.[2]

Travel between universes[edit | edit source]

The lifespan of a civilization is limited by the life of its parent universe. The ability to travel between universes removes this limitation by allowing the migration to younger universes as required.[5]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. The Hydrogen Sonata, chapter 2
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 "A Few Notes on the Culture"
  3. implying that matter and antimatter alternate?
  4. Consider Phlebas, chapter 8
  5. 5.0 5.1 Excession, chapter 3.4
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