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Multiverse

Some speculative theories have proposed that this universe is but one of a set of disconnected universes, collectively denoted as the multiverse, altering the concept that the universe encompasses everything. By definition, there is no possible way for anything in one universe to affect another; if two "universes" could affect one another, they would be part of a single universe. Thus, although some fictional characters travel between parallel fictional "universes", this is, strictly speaking, an incorrect usage of the term universe. The disconnected universes are conceived as being physical, in the sense that each should have its own space and time, its own matter and energy, and its own physical laws. Thus such physical disconnected universes should be distinguished from the metaphysical conception of alternate planes of consciousness, which are not thought to be physical places. The concept of a multiverse of disconnected universes is very old; for example, Bishop Étienne Tempier of Paris ruled in 1277 that God could create as many universes as he saw fit, a question that was being hotly debated by the French theologians.