Monday, December 12, 2016

From Aristotle to Mach's principle

Image result for aristotle
Aristotle, marble portrait bust, Roman copy (2nd century BC) of a Greek original 

Our 21st century world boasts a highly interconnected society, unprecedented technological development and increasing democratization all over the world, yet scientific literacy is lagging behind. Even science seem to be struggling with some basic questions, such as time, gravity or space. In many ways we still think in terms absolute time and space, inherited from Newtonian physics, However, the need for special reference frame contradicts some basic, contemporary requirements of science, such as Mach's principle, which disfavors the existence of a special orientation, i.e., reference frame. Although in a different context, the scientific and philosophical principle was debated since antiquity. For example, Aristotle viewed space only epitomizing the place of objects. Newton however, built his theory on absolute space.

Aristotle's idea idea was reformulated in Mach's principle, which strongly motivated Einstein. According to Mach's principle all locations and all motions are relative; the results of measurements should not depend on the choice of coordinates assigned to events. Inertial mass is determined by the mass distribution of the universe and inertia is caused by the gravitational action of distant matter. Mach's revolutionary insight is the realization of the impossibility to measure changes with time. "Time is the abstraction at which we arrive by the changes of things." Nevertheless, in contrast to its name, 'relativity' it still contains absolute elements and does not resolve the problem of the origin of inertia and fails to follow Mach's principle.

Let's examine the global picture of the universe in relation to Mach's principle. Current data shows that black hole horizons are information blocking, two dimensional firewalls that cannot be approached. As a consequence, the immense field strength of black holes form the outer boundary of the universe, in which Mach's principle is automatically followed due to dimensionality differences of space. The field strength would increase exponentially close to the black holes, leading to greater inertia. In contrast, smaller field strength in cosmic voids would generate small inertia.

In the Aristotelian view vacuum does not exist. In Newtonian physics vacuum is just a void, in quantum mechanics vacuum energy gives rise to virtual particles, in a process of constant creation and annihilation, and dictated by the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. The universe might agree with Aristotle with a twist however. If vacuum would increase the dimensions of the universe, then vacuum would lead to expansion of space and lead to the experience of dark energy. The pressure resulting from the field strength of black holes gravitational regions would be experienced as excess gravity, called dark matter. This simple, organically unified picture of the cosmos leads to an intuitive understanding of space and time as fundamental, interconnected fields. More information can be found in my book, 'The Science of Consciousness.' Such organic unity of the cosmos certainly would fit well with Aristotle.

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