(img source)

Lawrence Krauss, A Universe From Nothing: Why There is Something Rather than Nothing (2012)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_M._Krauss

http://books.google.com/books/about/A_Universe_from_Nothing.html?id=nfGlsiDGbxkC

See also an excellent talk on the subject from 2009: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ImvlS8PLIo

So we, and everything we see, result out of quantum fluctuations in what is essentially nothingness near the beginning of time, namely during the inflationary expansion.

Quote in context: 

“This results in the second amazing implication of inflation: That small density fluctuations in empty space, due to the rules of quantum mechanics, will later be responsible for all the structure we observe in the universe today.   

So we, and everything we see, result out of quantum fluctuations in what is essentially nothingness near the beginning of time, namely during the inflationary expansion.    

After all the dust has settled, the generic configuration of the matter and radiation will be that of an essentially flat universe, one in which the average Newtonian gravitational energy of all objects will appear to be zero.”

— Lawrence Krauss, A Universe From Nothing: Why There is Something Rather than Nothing (2012)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_M._Krauss

http://books.google.com/books/about/A_Universe_from_Nothing.html?id=nfGlsiDGbxkC

See also an excellent talk on the subject from 2009: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ImvlS8PLIo

Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing. Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist. It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going.

Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow, The Grand Design (2010)

I offer the modest proposal that our Universe is simply one of those things which happen from time to time.

Quote in context: “If it is true that our Universe has a zero net value for all conserved quantities, then it may simply be a fluctuation of the vacuum, the vacuum of some larger space in which our Universe is imbedded. In answer to the question of why it happened, I offer the modest proposal that our Universe is simply one of those things which happen from time to time.”  

– Tryon, E.P., 1973. Is the Universe a Vacuum Fluctuation? Nature, 246(5433), 396-397. doi:10.1038/246396a0

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v246/n5433/abs/246396a0.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vacuum_genesis

You are the big bang, the original force of the universe, coming on as whoever you are.

It’s like you took a bottle of ink and you threw it at a wall. Smash! And all that ink spread. And in the middle, it’s dense, isn’t it? And as it gets out on the edge, the little droplets get finer and finer and make more complicated patterns, see? 

[…] If you think that you are only inside your skin, you define yourself as one very complicated little curlique, way out on the edge of that explosion. Way out in space, and way out in time.

Billions of years ago, you were a big bang, but now you’re a complicated human being. And then we cut ourselves off, and don’t feel that we’re still the big bang. But you are. […] You are still the process.    

You are the big bang, the original force of the universe, coming on as whoever you are.”

– Alan Watts, The Nature of Consciousness

http://deoxy.org/w_nature.htm

http://abstrusegoose.com/215

Also available as a mini poster: http://www.cafepress.com/abstrusegoose.422398630

Ignacio Torres, Stellar
“This project began from the theory that humans are made of cosmic matter as a result of a stars death. I created imagery that showcased this cosmic birth through the use of dust and reflective confetti to create galaxies. The models organic bodily expressions as they are frozen in time between the particles suggest their celestial creation. In addition, space and time is heightened by the use of three-dimensional animated gifs. Their movement serves as a visual metaphor to the spatial link we share with stars as well as their separateness through time.”
http://ignacio-torres.com/projects/stellar/

We are a way for the cosmos to know itself.

Quote in context: “Some part of our being knows this is where we came from. We long to return. And we can. Because the cosmos is also within us. We’re made of star-stuff. We are a way for the cosmos to know itself.”

—Carl Sagan, Cosmos: A Personal Voyage. Ep. 1: “The Shores of the Cosmic Ocean.” 

Quote autotuned: “A Glorious Dawn” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zSgiXGELjbc (Symphony of Science)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Sagan

http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Carl_Sagan