The Big Bang
Albert Einstein said that Science without Religion is lame, and Religion without science is blind. The kabbalists have always seen the two as complementary. The cosmology of Kabbalah and of Modern Science can also be seen as complementary perspectives. That is why I used complementary colors in this picture.
In the Kabbalah, the creation of the universe is spoken of as a Tzimtzum, a contraction. Before this Tzimtzum, there was only the Infinite Light of God, which is totally incomprehensible and of which we can say nothing. We can only speak about what happens from the moment God’s Infinite Light is contracted and diminished into something that we can grasp - something that is on our finite level of existence. In the Kabbalah, creation is seen as residing ‘within’ God’s Infinite Light. The Midrash therefore says that God is the ‘place’ of the universe; the universe is not the place of God.
According to modern science, there is also a moment of creation. This is called 'the Big Bang'. It denotes the beginning of time and space almost 14 billion years ago. Physicists can describe the nature of the physical universe from a fraction of a second after the Big Bang, but the moment of the Big Bang itself is spoken of as a 'singularity' - where no laws of physics apply.
This singularity is beyond time and space and contains all the matter and energy of the entire universe in one infinitely hot and dense point represented by the very center of this picture. Scientists don’t say anything about what was 'before' the moment of the Big Bang. Since it was before the creation of time the word 'before' is meaningless. Nevertheless, according to Modern Science, the universe did not emerge from an empty void, but rather from a 'singularity' that contained everything - all the energy and matter that will be in the universe - in one perfectly symmetrical unity.
Maybe that is why Einstein said that Science without Religion is lame. The kabbalists also don’t say anything about what was before the Tzimtzum but they believe that an Infinite Being (God) exists and intentionally created and guides all things.