Tag Archives: Space-Time

Is not SR a Valid Scientific Theory? PART I

Atheists do have some deep-seated basic convictions. When science does in no way contradict these basic convictions of them, they are whole-heartedly with science. However if any scientific theory contradicts in any way any single basic conviction of them, they do not hesitate to go against science.

The two most basic convictions of the atheists are:

  • There is nothing supernatural; and
  • Whatever exists, exists within space-time only. So nothing can exist outside space-time.

However SR has shown that light exists neither in space nor in time, because travel time and travel distance become zero for light. So for light there is neither any space to exist nor any time to exist. This directly contradicts one of the two basic convictions of the atheists that nothing can exist outside space-time. So the attitude of the atheists towards SR is really very peculiar and ambiguous as will be evident from the interactions that I had with some atheists.

In one YouTube comment section one atheist wrote that if space-time began, there is no room for a deity. From here started the exchange of arguments and counterarguments between the two of us.

Me

‘If space-time began, there’s no room for a deity.’

This is not true. If this deity is spaceless and timeless, then it can exist spacelessly and timelessly without needing any space-time for it to exit.

Atheist1

“If this deity is spaceless and timeless” Then definitionally it doesn’t exist. Do you understand? Existence means within space-time. There is nothing “outside”. That’s a comparative concept that doesn’t apply.

Me

Please read the article “The Fundamental Nature of Light” by Dr. Sascha Vongehr in Science 2.0 (February 3rd, 2011) here:

http://www.science20.com/alpha_meme/fundamental_nature_light-75861

There it has been shown that light exists for zero time in zero space, because as per the special theory of relativity both the travel time and the travel distance becomes zero for light. Therefore as per SR light is in no space for no time. So will you say that light does not exist? Here is an example: A photon coming from a star lying at a distance of one billion light-years from the earth will take one billion years of earth’s time to reach the surface of the earth. But from the reference frame of light the distance from the star to the earth is zero. This is as per one of the equations of SR. So as per SR there is no space in between the star and the earth for light to exist. Similarly for light there is no time to exist, because from its own reference frame the travel time has also become zero for it.

Atheist1

“There it has been shown that light exists for zero time in zero space” Well.. that’s fundamentally wrong.. and we have been able to slow down photons and examine them, you know.

“So will you say that light does not exist?” We have a specific definition for the em spectrum, and we measure it.

“But from the reference frame of light” Heh.. light doesn’t have a reference frame. That’s another place you went wrong.

“Similarly for light there is no time to exist, because from its own reference frame the travel time has also become zero for it.” You understand that traveling at lightspeed isn’t going to matter when you are playing these imaginary games, right? Everything moves at the speed of light if you use light as a reference point. Can you see how that just doesn’t work? Also, you assume the speed of light in a vacuum is special, the entire em spectrum moves without regard for the higgs field.

Not sure how this in any way relates to your assertion that a nothing deity can exist. Your page is more philosophy than science.

Me

From your reply it appears that in order to not address the main issue here you have to discuss so many things about light that is not in any way warranted by my reply. I have given one example in my reply: light coming from a star situated at a distance of one billion light-years from the earth. I have also written that the travel distance (TD) and the travel time (TT) from the star to the earth become zero for light. Either I am wrong in my assertion here, or I am not. If I am not wrong, then the two legitimate scientific questions that can be asked here are these: in which space does light exist during its transition from the star to the earth (TD is zero)? And for how long does it exist (TT is also zero)? So the main issue here is simply this: do TD and TT really become zero for light, as the two equations of SR show? Or, do they not? So it was most essential for me to know whether I was wrong in my assertion here or not. But from your reply it is in no way possible for me to know this, because there is no clear-cut answer. So, without trying to sidetracking the real issue here, if you can answer this question just in one word only, then that will be enough and sufficient for me: am I wrong, or am I not? No one has requested you to take a science class here.

Atheist1

“I have given one example in my reply: light coming from a star situated at a distance of one billion light-years from the earth.” That still has nothing to do with your assertion of a deity, try to stay focused.

“I have also written that the travel distance (TD) and the travel time (TT) from the star to the earth become zero for light. Either I am wrong in my assertion here, or I am not.”

In simple terms:

  1. Space is not a perfect vacuum.
  2. The EM spectrum is not sentient, it cannot have a “perspective” as EM is just information packets, not mass.
  3. Mass cannot travel the speed of light, so your modality is flawed.

“If I am not wrong, then the two legitimate scientific questions that can be asked here are these: in which space does light exist during its transition from the star to the earth (TD is zero)? And for how long does it exist (TT is also zero)?” These questions sound like you have a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of space-time. Space-time is not static, it’s an infinitely variable matrix. Distance is variable as space-time expands (and it will eventually expand faster than light). Of course none of this is relevant to the assertion that a deity exists.

“But from your reply it is in no way possible for me to know this, because there is no clear-cut answer.” Because your questions are not cogent. You need to take a basic cosmology course, understand that there’s a lot more going on than simple trigonometry.

Me

Equations of SR show that travel time and travel distance become zero for light. On the basis of this I have asked these two questions: “in which space does light exist during its transition from the star to the earth (TD is zero)? And for how long does it exist (TT is also zero)?”

But you have written that I “have a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of space-time. Space-time is not static, it’s an infinitely variable matrix. Distance is variable as space-time expands (and it will eventually expand faster than light)”.

So do you mean to say here that if the two facts that space-time is not static and that distance is also variable are properly taken into consideration, then we will find that travel time and travel distance do not actually become zero for light? As whatever I have written is based on the two equations of SR only, so do you mean to say that SR has not taken into consideration these two facts and that that is the reason why it has arrived at some equations that are wrongly showing that travel time and travel distance become zero for light? Do you mean to say that if an actual experiment is conducted with light coming from a distant galaxy, then we will be able to arrive at some other equations completely different from those of SR and that will be able to show that travel time and travel distance do not become zero for light?

Has any such experiment been conducted by any scientist? Can you give any citation? Otherwise how do we come to know that these are not just your personal opinions having no valid scientific basis?

On the basis of which scientific evidence are you saying that travel time and travel distance do not become zero for light when the equations of SR are showing that they do become zero?

Here there are only two possibilities:

1) Either SR has not taken into consideration the facts that space-time is not static and that distance is also variable and that is why it is wrongly showing that travel time and travel distance become zero for light;

2) Or SR has properly taken into consideration the above two facts and despite that it is showing that travel time and travel distance become zero for light.

If 1), then SR is not a valid scientific theory and therefore it should be immediately replaced by some other better theory.

If 2), then my two questions are fully legitimate questions.

Up till now he has not replied although more than two weeks have already elapsed.

Here Atheist1 is not directly saying that SR is not a valid scientific theory. That much courage he does not possess. He knows very well that if he says so, then he will have to substantiate it by some actual experimental evidence as otherwise no one will believe his words. But neither is it possible for him to digest that one well-established scientific theory is showing that light exists neither in space nor in time and so he brings in all sorts of arguments to point out that this cannot be the case:

1) Space is not a perfect vacuum:

2) Space-time is not static, it’s an infinitely variable matrix: and

3) Distance is also variable.

Below is the case of another atheist who is bold enough to say that mathematics of SR is wrong.

Atheist2

So how can a god that exists outside time interact with stuff inside time? At best you have a deist god, but doesn’t this result in another version of the interaction problem? 

Me

Please read the article “The Fundamental Nature of Light” by Dr. Sascha Vongehr in Science 2.0 (February 3rd, 2011) here:

http://www.science20.com/alpha_meme/fundamental_nature_light-75861

There it has been shown that light exists for zero time in zero space, because as per the special theory of relativity both the travel time and the travel distance becomes zero for light. Therefore as per SR light is in no space for no time. Still being neither in space nor in time light can have effects on things within space and time. 

Atheist2

‘Therefore as per SR light is in no space for no time.’

That’s not at all what SR says. Just that light doesn’t ‘experience’ time. It still has location in spacetime(duh, photons is how we see stuff), which means it exists in spacetime.

So you’ve not solved this interaction problem, you’ve just demonstrated you’ve no idea what it’s about, and why SR debunks A-theory of time. 

Me

A photon coming from a star lying at a distance of one billion light-years from the earth will take one billion years of earth’s time to reach the surface of the earth. But from the reference frame of light the distance from the star to the earth is zero. This is as per one of the equations of SR. So as per SR there is no space in between the star and the earth for light to exist. So please specify in which particular space-point does light exist during its transition from the star to the earth. Just saying that light exists in space-time will not do. 

Atheist2

‘But from the reference frame of light the distance from the star to the earth is zero.’

Yes, dr^2 and such, but the particle still exists in space-time now does it.

Again, no frame of reference doesn’t mean no space-time-allocation.

‘So as per SR there is no space in between the star and the earth for light to exist.’

No, just that photons don’t experience time.

‘Just saying that light exists in space-time will not do.’

If observation defeats math, math is wrong, not observation. 

Me

‘If observation defeats math, math is wrong, not observation.’

So you are saying that math of SR is wrong, because observation cannot be wrong. Can you offer a better theory that will be able to replace SR? If you do have such a theory, then please present it to the peers and get it accepted. 

Atheist2

‘So you are saying that math of SR is wrong, because observation cannot be wrong.’

No. Both theory and observation are subject to fallabilism. That doesn’t mean observation isn’t key to physics. I’d refer you to Kuhn’s 5 ways for theory choice.

‘Can you offer a better theory that will be able to replace SR?’

No, nor do I see why I should, that’s not my job. SR is still less wrong than what came before, and very useful. It’s just not complete. 

Me

There are two theories of science that are also considered as facts by the scientific community. These two theories are:

1) Darwin’s theory of evolution: and

2) Einstein’s special theory of relativity.

A theory can be falsified at any time, but a fact is a fact is a fact is a fact is a fact is a fact is a fact. So perhaps you are daydreaming if you think that one day SR will be replaced by some other better theory.

Something or Someone must exist Beyond Space-time

There is good reason to believe that something or someone exists beyond space-time. Whatever exists within space-time is contingent upon space-time for its existence. If space-time is gone, then everything within space-time will also be gone. So it cannot acquire any property or characteristic either from space-time itself or from anything within space-time that will make space-time itself non-existent, because by that process it will cause its own demise. This is simple common sense. Our existence is contingent upon the existence of earth; so if we destroy the earth, we will also be destroyed.
Now light originates within space-time; that means the existence of light is contingent upon the existence of space-time. So in case of light also the above will be true; light cannot acquire any property or properties either from space-time itself or from anything within space-time that will make space-time non-existent for it. But from SR we see that time totally stops for light and that even infinite distance becomes zero for it. That means space and time become non-existent for light. Therefore due to the reason given above we can say that light must have received these two properties from someone or something whose existence is not contingent upon the existence of space-time and whose existence will not be affected in any way even when space-time is gone.