Against The Grain: Explaining Radioactive Decay
There are three possible explanations for ordinary radioactive decay, that anomalous behavior on the part of unstable nuclei that go poof for no apparent reason at all yet lack of causality doesn't prevent radioactive decay from happening in a precise mathematical way - the half-life relationship.
Explanation Number One: We, along with everything else, are just the products of a computer simulation run by pre-programmed software. It's the software that runs the radioactivity show exhibiting an apparent invisible causality yet coding that half-life relationship. This is what as known in the trade as the Simulation Hypothesis.
Explanation Number Two: Panpsychism rules, OK? Panpsychism is the concept that everything, even the inorganic, the non-living, right down to each and every fundamental particle has a degree of consciousness. In other words, in order to uphold this half-life relationship, unstable nuclei seem to somehow know when it is their turn to go poof. They are conscious of having to commit 'suicide' for a universal mathematical principle they must uphold.
Explanation Number Three - Part A: Traditional particle physicists hold that the decay of unstable nuclei into stable nuclei, throwing off Alpha particles, Beta particles and Gamma rays in the process, is an inside-out happening. In other words, it's what happens internally; inside the nucleus that causes the poof. The process is not outside-in as nothing in the external environment to the unstable nucleus can force it to decay. Nevertheless, I'm going to propose an outside-in explanation, albeit one, to the best of my knowledge, that's unique.
Explanation Number Three - Part B: Neutrinos exist. That's been experimentally verified. While they have very, very, very little mass, then tend to travel at extremely high velocities - close to light speed. Thus, even though they can penetrate light-years worth of lead unimpeded, every now and again they will whack into something. Because of their velocity, they will have a lot of momentum when they do hit. While they don't have enough momentum to break apart a stable nucleus, an unstable nucleus is just teetering on the edge such that the momentum of an impacting neutrino can break it apart - what we call a radioactive decay incident or event.
Explanation Number Three - Part C: Where does the half-life relationship enter the picture? Well, here's an analogy. Imagine a room absolutely full to the brim of blown-up party balloons. Those balloons represent your unstable nuclei. Now imagine that the door to the room is open and you, standing outside that door, can see the balloons, or some of them anyway. In your hand you hold a near infinite supply of darts. The darts represent the neutrinos. As you toss the darts through the open door, you're going to score a hit, a burst balloon, a radioactive decay event in other words, with nearly every toss. However, as there becomes fewer and fewer and fewer blown-up party balloons left, many of your darts are going to miss hitting a blown-up balloon with increasing frequency. So in one unit of time you might burst half the balloons, but in the next equal unit of time you'd be far less likely to burst all of the rest. You might only burst half of what was left, and then in the third unit of time half of what was left, and so one down the line until eventually there will be no blown-up balloons left standing.
Unfortunately, my abilities to put this idea on a more rigorous footing is lacking but perhaps someone with greater abilities in manipulating the realm of particle physics might be able to give this a thumb's up or a thumb's down. If the latter, well there's still the Simulation Hypothesis and Panpsychism.