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Something For Nothing

What else is there in the world besides matter? Nothing. But there is thought and sensation. Although these are definitely not matter, they are situated in matter, namely the brains of organisms. Outside of these functioning organs, there is nothing other than matter.

Words like truth, justice, love, force, time, space, law, mathematics, history, will, spirit, and creator are only ideas, and can't be separated from brains.

One source of confusion is scientific terminology. For example: spacetime continuum, coming as it does from the pen of the physicist with the highet reputation, it seems as real as the ground we stand on.

The real-life Einstein did not intend to convey the notion that the universe is situated in a continuum. He was merely working out a mathematical model that would furnish correct numerical solutions to problems in physics.

Not only is there no continuum. There is no time, space, or spacetime, and there is no physics or mathematics outside of a brain.

A hundred years ago mathematicians decided that there is no certainty in mathematics. Even the most elementary branch of mathematics, addition, is less than perfect. If we can't add apples and pears, we try adding pieces of fruit. That still won't work, because one piece is on the left and the other is on the right. As long as there is a difference, they can't be added. I wonder how they manage that in the commodities market.

In the old physics textbooks, matter was defined as that which takes up space and has weight. What is space? Space is nothing or nothingness. When something shrinks, is the matter less? When salt is added to water, the total volume of the salt and the water shrinks. Is it less matter? What is volume? It is a measurement which can be made by simple instruments like measuring cups. A measurement is not a thing in itself.

Speed is distance per unit of time. Distance is that which is measured by a yardstick, and time is that which is measured by an hourglass or a pendulum. Measurement is only a comparison of one thing to another, and both things are matter, while comparison is a thought process.

Let us return to Einstein. He was concerned with cause and effect. He showed how the same effect can result from different causes. If you are in an elevator car in interstellar space, with no way to look out, and the car has a constant acceleration (equal to the acceleration due to gravity on earth), you feel as heavy on your feet as if the elevator car were resting on earth.

He likewise pointed out that a beam of light coming from a star, and passing close to the sun (as seen during a total eclipse) would travel a curved path. Either the photons of light are attracted by the solar gravity, or space is curved by gravitaional fields.

It is speculation of this kind that developed into the big bang theory. There was some indication that perhaps the farther away a galaxy is, the faster it is moving away from us. With a bit of mathematics it seemed that the univese is expanding. Then it was decided that the speed of expansion had to change a few times in the first few moments of existence. As a cause, they chose an expanding gravitational field. As a source of matter, they chose energy which was concentrated in one infinitessimal space. Now they wonder whether the universe will continue to expand or eventually collapse.

The big bangers appear to assume that before the world began, there were the laws of nature that had to be obeyed , and mathematical equations.

The strongest evidence for the big bang is very weak. It is the background radiation that has been observed coming equally from all directions in the universe. Before they had this background evidence, they had the red shift evidence, which suggested that the more distant galaxies were moving away at speeds great enough to cause the doppler effect.

The doppler effect is observed when the source of light is moving very rapidly away from the observer, or the observer is moving rapidly away from the source. The astronomer who focuses the light source, views the light through a spectrometer which sorts the incoming photons according to frequency. The instrument has a scale by which it measures frequency. When an identifiable photon arrives at the scale of the spectrometer slightly to the left of its normal position, it is counted as a red shift. It means that the photon has a slightly reduced frequency.

The effect of gravity on a photon was tested. It was measured by the red shift of a photon that was sent skyward and the blue shift when the photon was sent downward. Now we have two causes of shift, the motion of the source and the mass of the source.

There is a third consideration. A moving body has more mass.

The observer doesn't know that the source of the photon is moving. He surmises that there is motion only because he observes a red shift.

He would find the same red shift if the source were stationary and very massive.

He would even get a red shift if the source were moving toward the observer and were extremely massive. After we get through wondering how the other galaxies got so heavy, and how they got great speed, one begins to wonder why we prefer one of the three possible causes of red shift.

To return to the strongest evidence, the background radiation, it is microwave radiation. A cone-shaped microwave antenna receives the radiation and converts it into alternating current, which is then analyzed for amplitude and frequency. The results appear on a graph which makes clear what the average frequency is. At that frequency, the source would have been at a temperature in the vicinity of 3 degrees Kelvin. The latest observations show a slight variation for different directions, but the general idea of uniformity is not shaken.

The point is that the astrophysicists say that the only way for this uniformity to occur,the entire universe had to originate in one place, the big bang. They don't notice that there are other ways to achieve that uniformity. For example, all matter consists of neg bits and pos bits. Every particle of matter emits neg-pos pairs at fixed intervals. The same particles receive neg-pos pairs.

When a particle is accelerating, it receives neg-pos pairs at a faster rate than it emits them. When the particle is decelerating, it emits neg-pos pairs at a faster rate than it receives them. When the particle is stationary, it sends and receives at the same rate.

If one asks what a microwave is, the answer is that it is a succession of neg-pos bits. Therefore, the background radiation is the neg-pos pairs going from place to place. The fact that they are observed equally in all directions, shows that the universe is uniform in that respect.

The parts of the universe that are different, do not exhibit background radiation. They are either seen as sources of light, or they are completely dark.

There is more than one possible way to get uniform, or partly uniform, background radiation.

The business of temperature comes about because the frequency of the radiation is higher when the temperature is higher.

We certainly are not compelled to believe in the big bang when the strongest evidence is so weak and the whole idea of a big bang is absurd.

Astrophysicists have decided that the only source of atoms of the elements with more nucleons per nucleus than iron would have to be a supernova, because that is the only place where the temperature is high enough to yield sufficient energy to start a nuclear reaction in which the product nucleus has more mass per nucleon than the reacting nucleus. As a result of this finding, the scientists have a problem trying to figure out how the earth and the sun received such a supply of heavy elements in the comparatively short time that the universe existed since the big bang.

The answer is simple. The universe always existed. Its time is unlimited. The atoms of a particular isotope could be produced one at a time in the shower of space junk that keeps raining on the earth and sun. A single atom moving at sufficient speed is individually at a sufficiently high temperature to supply the energy of the wrong-way nuclear reaction that produces a heavier element. Given a long enough time, atoms of the same species can aggregate. Obvioously the universe has time for anything.

The big bangers tell us that the galaxies move away from each other. At least that is what they were doing when they emitted the light that we are now receiving from them. That light has a red shift, meaning that the frequency of each band of a color that appears in the spectrum of a galaxy is less than the frequency of the same band in light from the sun.

It is not the motion of the source that causes the red shift of the distant galaxies. It is the motion of the atoms that have been ejected by stars.

The only evidence we have that galaxies are receding is the red shift. If we can suggest another cause for the red shift, we are not compelled to accept theories based on an expanding universe.

There are various items at large in the almost perfect vacuum of intergalactic space. When a photon of visible light encounters an atom, it causes an electron of that photon to oscillate at the natural frequency for that electron. The motion of the electron increases a little each time a half cycle of a photon arrives. As long as the frequency of the cycles that arrive is close to the frequency of the electron, each cycle is absorbed as it arrives. When the cycle that arrives is out of synchronization, it is not absorbed, it, and the rest of the photon, is emitted as fast as it arrives, in the same direction as it was going.

In the case where the frequency of the photon closely matches the frequency of the electron, the entire photon is absorbed by the electron. Then the electron emits a new photon in the direction that the original photon was going. If the match is close, but not exact, the new photon is of the frequency of the electron, not the frequency of the original photon.

The number of cycles per photon of visible light is in the range of 6 x 105 cycles. The change in the number of cycles in a single encounter with an atom, may be as few as one cycle or as many as 100 cycles. In any event, it is a very small fraction of the total. The point is that the longer the distance that a photon travels, the more its frequency changes.

What is typical of an atom that is out in space? It has more potential energy than it would have on a planet or a star. The extra energy implies extra mass. At each encounter with an electron, a photon suffers a slight red shift. By the time a photon arrives from a distant galaxy, the red shift is measurable

For more about the Doppler effect see


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