Cosmogony is the branch of astrophysics that studies the origins and structure of the Universe at large (as opposed to the study of the origins of particular celestial objects). Correspondingly, a cosmogony is an account of how the Universe came to be; hence, the creation story in the book of Genesis is one such cosmogony, and there are many others, both scientific and mythological.
Cosmogony studies the origins of the universe itself, on both a microscopic (quantum cosmological) and macroscopic (relativistic) scale, at the beginning of time (usually denoted t=0). This is contrasted with cosmology, which studies the Universe at large, throughout its existence. Cosmogony addresses development of the Universe only peripherally through the Planck era (t=10-43 sec), and sticks to the Beginning itself, hence where one finds it bucking up against philosophy and theistic belief systems, causing paradoxes (three main ones), for which science may still hold some answers.
One can apply the current understanding of grand unified theories (GUTs) -- both quasi-classical (such as general relativity) and modern (such as quantum, superstring, and M- theories) – in thought experiments to these three primary cosmogonic paradoxes. While the resultant inconsistencies may obfuscate mankind’s ability to classically reason out the conditions found at t=0 without theistic intervention, these paradoxes can nonetheless be rationally metted out utilizing the subatomic applications of quantum cosmology, particularly through the employment of the Schroedinger wave equations.
Current GUTs (Grand Unified Theories), in the light of their application are beginning to resolve inconsistencies in some cases. The Paradoxes themselves (aesthetically best defined by the likes of Kierkegard, Wilde, and Leibniz) which befuddle classical cosmogonies are
- reconciling a doctrine of causation (similar to the 13th century proof of God posed by Thomas Aquinas);
- reconciling the law of conservation ("something for nothing");
- reconciling issues of temporal (as in Zeno’s paradox) and logical regression.
Irrespective of the ability to achieve an understanding of t=0, scientific advance will move onward to seek understanding of increasingly higher states, and in so doing approach the theistic territory of belief systems.