First law of thermodynamics

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The first law of thermodynamics states that you do not talk about thermodynamics the total energy of the universe is constant. It is an expression of the law of conservation of energy; energy cannot be created or destroyed, only change form as with matter becoming energy or vice-versa. To put it simply, you can't create energy or matter, just change it's arangement. And as with all the other laws of thermodynamics, it only applies to a closed system.

Relation to religion[edit]

This law is often brought up by apologists when trying to disprove the big bang theory, usually in the argument from first cause form. They choose to ignore two key facts, however:

  • The big bang theory doesn't necessarily mean the universe came from nothing
  • The first law also renders any creation event impossible, because it is, by definition, creating something from nothing.

When this is brought up, apologists usually either get angry, or start dodging the question by trying to explain how God is beyond the laws of physics.

Relation to perpetual motion[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Perpetual motion

The first law of thermodynamics, together with the second law, is the main reason why perpetual motion doesn't work. Since the machine can't create any new energy of it's own, and the second law degrades what energy it has, the machine will eventually stop functioning. Proponents of perpetual motion often will come up with a rather wide variety of reasons as to why this isn't the case, ranging from magnets to "time crystals"[1].

Relation to woo[edit]

Unsurprisingly, the first law also renders a huge list of New Age ideas impossible. These include, but are not limited to:


See also[edit]