Professor Roger Penrose (PhD. Mathematics) of the University of Oxford is interviewed by Robert Kuhn of the PBS program "Closer to Truth". In this segment, Dr. Penrose is asked, "Why did our universe begin?" How did the universe come to be? It is perhaps the greatest Great Mystery, and the root of all the others. The rest of humanity's grand questions?How did life begin? What is consciousness? What is dark matter, dark energy, gravity??stem from it. "All other mysteries lie downstream of this question," said Ann Druyan, the author and widow of astronomer Carl Sagan. "It matters to me because I am human and do not like not knowing." Even as the theories attempting to solve this mystery grow increasingly complex, scientists are haunted by the possibility that some of the most critical links in their chain of reasoning is wrong. According to the standard Big Bang model, the universe was born during a period of inflation that began about 13.7 billion years ago. Like a rapidly expanding balloon, it swelled from a size smaller than an electron to nearly its current size within a tiny fraction of a second. Initially, the universe was permeated only by energy. Some of this energy congealed into particles, which assembled into light atoms like hydrogen and helium. These atoms clumped first into galaxies, then stars, inside whose fiery furnaces all the other elements were forged. Sir Roger Penrose OM FRS is an English mathematical physicist, mathematician and philosopher of science. He is Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics in the University of Oxford and Emeritus Fellow of Wadham College, Oxford.