Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Scientific Philosophy, Universal Origins and the head honcho upstairs

I will preface this by saying that I am not a scientist, or anyone else with an expertise on matters of dimensionality and physics and the like. However, I had some ideas that I would like to posit.

We'll start with a point, like this one --> .

It's not much, it has zero dimensions.
Making it a line gives it freedom in one dimension (the line goes from left to right).
Making this line a square gives us freedom in two dimensions (left, right, forward, back).
Making this square a cube now gives us freedom in three dimensions (left, right, forward, back, up, down).

I could go on about higher dimensions, but this video explains it better than me:

Imagine, if you will an apple. If an apple could visit the second dimension, a denizen of that dimension would only see cross-sections of the apple. This video explains it better than I ever could:

Now you know as much as I do about this dimensional stuff. I had two thoughts though...

Assume for a second that Time was the fourth dimension. That would mean that any fourth dimensional entity coming through a three dimensional universe would alter in appearance. Hmmm, maybe this is what age is?

Think about it, everything that is born must die and as a consequence, would age. To that end, perhaps our birth, life and death is merely the passage of four dimensional entities through the third dimension. Maybe we're three dimensional projections of a fourth dimensional self?

The reason I think about this is because of something called the mind-brain problem. In Artificial Intelligence, there's a debate (at least there used to be) about the separation of the mind from the brain. The idea being that there is no clear physical explanation of what makes the mind. If the mind is an emergent property of the brain (i.e. it just arises from the complexity of the brain), then how does it affect the body? How is it the case that me thinking about raising my arm affect my body doing it?

The idea that we're parts of higher dimensional entities is appealing, but there's no scientific basis in fact for this, but from a philosophical point of view, it is intriguing. What if two or more people were the projections of the same higher dimensional entity? What if this was actually the soul?

Also, what stops those higher dimensional beings from being projections of even higher dimensional beings? In theory, one could abstract (just as noted in that first video) up to a final singularity, which would all there is, was and ever would be, the Alpha and the Omega.

Again, we (humanity) don't have scientific evidence for this, it is merely an exciting conjecture.

The other thought I had was about our universe. The current scientific theory is that our universe is expanding, a result of a collosal explosion called the Big Bang. We know this because there is the Cosmic Background Radiation as well as the observed effect of the rest of the universe rushing away from us (like when I play the piano in a hotel lobby).

I wonder, what if our universe was a fourth (or higher) dimensional entity that was passing through the third dimension (or at least our 3 +1 dimension)?

I don't think this idea holds much water the more I think about it. This analogy wouldn't explain the *expansion* as we're seeing it. Ah well.

Still, it is tempting to think that, perhaps, just perhaps, there's an explanation for a cosmic supreme entity. I don't think it would fit the definition of God as defined by any religion. This kind of philosophical conjecture can at least be tested (once you've defined a prediction that *can* be tested in a proper manner). Maybe the people who follow us will look at our conjectures now and smile the way we do when our kids talk about The Great Pumpkin, Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy.


kurt wismer said...

mind-body problem: consider the possibility that what we call the mind is just our limited perception of the far more complex processes going on in our brain... when we 'think' about moving our arms, that doesn't actually happen in our minds, it happens in our brains and our minds are just a filtered/interpreted view of what's going on in our brains (just like what we see with our eyes is a limited/filtered/interpreted view of the physical world around us)...

as for the n-dimensional stuff: a 4D entity in a 3D universe does not change - change (and the perception thereof) requires the 4th dimension (time)... i don't think a 4D entity can have multiple 'projections' into the same 3D space (one thing cannot be in 2 different places at the same time), however an entity capable of 5D travel might be able to do so because it would be able to travel outside of time to a point in time where it has already been before (4th dimensional travel is just a linear progression over the time-line)...

if the universe really does have 10 dimensions then it seems to me that we are all actually 10 dimensional beings (in the sense that we exist in 10 dimensions) who are simply not able to perceive the higher dimensions... for example, a metal cube would generally be considered to be a 3 dimensional object (due to a perceptual bias that favours the 3 spacial dimensions) but it definitely exists in a 4 dimensional universe because you can change it's position over time...

Marcelo Vignali said...

I have found that atheists have just as much faith in what they don't believe as the religious faithful. I found this out in me because I was an atheist too at one point in my life, but fortunately I was an honest atheist as was willing to admit that what I based my philosophy on was purely faith.

The God issue is an intriguing one. In the Bible's first pages, it outlines the beginnings of our universe, and out world. Surprisingly, the order is mostly correct. Considering that the Bible is an ancient manuscript, and was used to convey its message to thousands of generations of different cultural backgrounds and different educations, it was written in a very simple way that convey a very complex subject. But that doesn’t mean it is without value.

What is interesting is that the Bible’s God merely speaks, and we are given creation. God is also timeless, without a body, and can be everywhere at once. Also, the battle between good and evil has already been fought in the future, and God triumphs over Satan. And ancient prophets can peer into the future. How can this be?

It is entirely plausible that God is not within our time space, but rather a Being outside our realm that can access our time space. Without time, the past, present and future simultaneously exist and God would be able to be everywhere at once, because there aren’t the limitations of time/space.

The plausibility is such that any atheist would have to deny reason in order to be certain of their non-belief. Being an atheist is about as reasonable as being certain there is no life on any other planet, or that this is the only dimension.

kurt wismer said...

@marcelo vignali:
"I have found that atheists have just as much faith in what they don't believe as the religious faithful."

as an atheist, i pretty much agree with that (with the exception that i think it would have been more correct without the "don't" - not believing in a thing is simply believing that the converse is true)...

there's no more evidence for the statement 'there is 0 god(s)' than there is for the statement 'there is 1 god(s)', therefore both require an equal amount of faith...