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Should we explore the universe?

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Mark Davis Commentator Mark Davis says we should:

This week is a perfect time to stoke the dormant embers of the wonder we once felt. A vehicle crafted by human hands has just left the solar system after visiting Pluto, sending us crisp photographs of a world 3 billion miles away. Just 50 short years ago, we had never sent anything out of Earth orbit.

But on a sunny morning in Florida 46 years ago this week, three Americans left our world to set foot on another. I was 11 for the launch of Apollo 11. Neil Armstrong’s July 20, 1969 footprint on the moon’s Sea of Tranquillity was in the middle of my summer between sixth and seventh grade. More.

I remember those times too. Science was about doing stuff, not imagining stuff.

I’d sure rather explore the universe than the multiverse. At least we know the universe exists somewhere outside our own minds.

For why the multiverse probably exists only in our minds, go here. Hint: Why did it need to be true in the first place?

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55 Replies to “Should we explore the universe?

  1. 1
    Mung says:

    We should explore the multiverse.

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    OT: podcast – Hugh Hewitt Show: Dr. Meyer on Darwin’s Doubt and the Cambrian Explosion
    http://www.discovery.org/multi.....explosion/

    Dr. Stephen Meyer is a guest on the Hugh Hewitt show. Meyer and Hewitt discuss Meyer’s recent New York Times Bestselling book Darwin’s Doubt. Meyer walks listeners through the main points of the book, along with other evidence for the theory of intelligent design. Meyer also dispels the myth that there is a scientific consensus on Darwinian evolution.

  3. 3
    daveS says:

    Yes!

    Manned expeditions are cool, but I would prefer to see more projects such as the New Horizons probe and the Mars rovers.

    I’m sure everyone saw the stories recently about how it cost less than the new Vikings stadium. It’s also about 1/4 the cost of the 2-mile long tunnel in Seattle replacing the Alaskan Way Viaduct. These things are (relatively) dirt cheap and scientifically very valuable.

  4. 4
    polistra says:

    The Pluto team helps immensely. They’re informal, non-bureaucratic and human. So far they haven’t said CLIMATE CHANGE even once, which is an amazing feat in itself.

    This is the first time in ages that I’ve been able to sit back and say WOW to a space-type achievement, instead of roaring imprecations at the tyrannical monsters who push it.

    Incidentally, doesn’t the Sputnik Plain look more like a brain than a plain? It certainly doesn’t look like “boiling oatmeal” as it’s being described.

  5. 5
    ppolish says:

    Explore the Universe? One light year is 6,000,000,000,000 miles. The Milky Way is 100 thousand of those across. The Earth will be engulfed by the Sun before the Pluto Probe can even reach the edge of Milky Way.

    So exploring the Universe “in person” is silly. And using telescopes, we can already see as far as we will ever be able to see. But we can get better resolution from our instruments – and explore that way. But explore “in person”? Come on. We would not get far before evolution would do away with us. Extinction City. Puny Earthlings. You suck;)

  6. 6
    ppolish says:

    And the Universe is expanding – other galaxies are rushing away from us. In the future, the CMB will no longer be detectable. Further on in the future, no other galaxies will be detectable. If there are Astronomers in the Milky Way then, they will be alone. No other galaxies detectable sigh.

  7. 7
    Mapou says:

    We should certainly explore the universe but there is no way we are going to colonize the solar system, let alone the galaxy beyond, with a bunch of cockamamie rockets. A propulsion system that consists of throwing stuff out the back in order to move forward is as primitive as can be. It is simply not going to cut it.

    We will not only need a breakthrough propulsion system/science that will allow us to travel from Earth to Mars within hours (not months or years), we will also need to send millions upon millions of intelligent machines to other worlds to prepare the way for human travelers.

  8. 8
    Mapou says:

    And the Universe is expanding

    I personally doubt this very much.

  9. 9
    daveS says:

    Mapou,

    I personally doubt this very much.

    Is it contracting, stationary, or something else?

  10. 10
    Robert Byers says:

    There is no life or any element etc out there that is not gere on earth.
    nothing new to be found. its cool to land on these places but soon its irrelevant.
    The universe, as the bible implies, was the original eternity for mankind. So it was to be colonized by eternal living humanity and endless breeding would make hugh populations needing places to live. by this time we should have , say 50 billion people alive, if no death, and have made many planets our own or found them to live on.
    Paradise lost.

  11. 11
    Mapou says:

    ppolish @5:

    Explore the Universe? One light year is 6,000,000,000,000 miles. The Milky Way is 100 thousand of those across. The Earth will be engulfed by the Sun before the Pluto Probe can even reach the edge of Milky Way.

    So exploring the Universe “in person” is silly.

    That’s true but only if we continue to hold on to our old assumptions about distance. Distance (space or volume) is abstract. It is a perceptual illusion. There are several reasons for this but the one that I like the most is this. If everything must exist in space, where is space itself? To solve this problem we would need a meta-space for space and a meta-meta-space for the meta-space, ad infinitum. IOW, there is no distance/space. It is an illusion caused by the way particles interact and the way our brains are genetically pre-wired to represent the world. I wrote a blog article on this topic several years ago.

    So I believe that, in a foreseeable future, when physicists wake up from their stupor and develop a correct understanding of motion and position, we will develop technologies that will allow us to travel from anywhere to anywhere instantly, without going through the intermediate positions.

  12. 12
    Mapou says:

    daveS:

    Is it contracting, stationary, or something else?

    I believe that the universe is probably spinning around a common center of gravity at just the right velocity to keep it stable. If not, there must be some other mechanism to keep it stable. Why? It’s because I speak as someone who believes that the universe was designed. I believe it was designed to last a very long time.

  13. 13
    Virgil Cain says:

    Well “The Privileged Planet” says that the universe was designed for scientific discovery, so yes, we “have” to explore it.

  14. 14
    55rebel says:

    Q: “Is it contracting, stationary, or something else?”

    A: Relatively stationary…. as in static.

    Because, there is no need for the BIG BANG with its absurd side-kicks: “Dark matter”, “Dark energy” and black holes, to explain the apparent expansion of the universe, and other phenomena we observe. Looks can be deceiving, and indeed, in this case they most certainly are. There are much more… logical, rational and scientific explanations for the phenomena we observe out there. Other than the absurdities shoved down our throats, by those who wish to keep us ignorant, barefoot, confused, and pregnant 😛 Darwinian-evolution, is another perfect example of this phenomenon (agenda?). ….the STATE IS God!

    If you wish to know why or how there could be “much more logical, rational and scientific explanations for the phenomena we observe out there”?
    ….just ask.

  15. 15
    kairosfocus says:

    Mapou, Hubble red shift plus 2.7 K microwave background (killed the Steady State theory in the ’60’s), where it is space itself expanding and carrying galaxies etc like raisins in a baking bun. Cf 101 discussion on astronomy etc here on: http://iose-gen.blogspot.com/2.....cosmointro KF

    PS: That we were equipped to explore, learn and use fruit of learning strongly suggests an invitation to explore. The significance of astronomy in Physics and Mathematics multiplies same. The issue of solar system colonisation and going beyond beckons, that is our ultimate room for growth.

  16. 16
    55rebel says:

    “Hubble red shift plus 2.7 K microwave background (killed the Steady State theory in the ’60’s)”

    Only to those who don’t know any better.

  17. 17
    kairosfocus says:

    55R, The first two are observational facts for which the best current theoretical explanation is cosmological expansion per the Hubble const with back projection to centre some 14 BYA [the heart of the Big Bang theory, never mind whatever issues obtain], the third is a historical fact of cosmology. If you follow the linked you will also see the issue of HR diagrams, dynamics of large hot H-rich gas balls and the HR diagrams of clusters with breakaways from main sequence consistent with a comparable, smaller age. Not to be lightly brushed aside. KF

  18. 18
    Mapou says:

    kairosfocus,

    The redshift and the CBR are facts but universal expansion is not. It’s just an interpretation designed to favor someone’s pet theory. There are other competing interpretations.

  19. 19
    55rebel says:

    “first two are observational facts”

    Red shift, I would most certainly agree with–minus the “Hubble”.

    First kairosfocus, let me ask you this…
    Given that it’s been calculated that, on average, there is ~1 electron per cubic meter (slightly less actually) of IG space. Source: plasma, known to permeate ALL of “so-called” empty space (mostly ultra cold ), what is the probability of an photon encountering –on average– one of these electrons, on its way here; from say… the Andromeda Galaxy (distance: ~2.5 Million light years)?

    My guess, would be more than a couple…. how bout you?!

    And…

    What do you think would be the product of this encounter?

    Oh, I know!!…. let me!!
    One: the photon would lose energy; increasing its wavelength as a result….No?
    Two: the electron would recoil, and as a result, said electron would give up some microwave energy (CMB?!). This little scenario has been documented in the lab, BTW…. real science.

    ….need I explain further?

  20. 20
    kairosfocus says:

    55R, continue to the cumulative result, similar to Olbers paradox. Also, preserve line spectra. KF

  21. 21
    55rebel says:

    “similar to Olbers paradox” not sure how that plays into what I’m spelling out here…. care to explain?

    “Also, preserve line spectra”

    “On their journey through Intergalactic space, the photons are constantly absorbed and re-emitted, undergoing a shift in wavelength each time. However, as to whether a photon collides or not will depend upon the laws of chance and as a result, some photons will make more collisions than others and thus undergo a different redshift. This means that there will be a spread of redshifts for a particular absorption line. That is, the redshifted absorption lines in the spectra from distant galaxies should not be the sharp lines that we see in the laboratory, but should be ‘broadened’. This is what we expect to see and also what we do see.” — http://lyndonashmore.com/photo.....spread.htm

    Is this what you’re referring to?…. inquiring minds would like to know…..thanks.

  22. 22
    Mapou says:

    Olbers paradox is not an argument against a static universe. It is an argument against an infinite universe with an infinite number of stars.

  23. 23
    Mapou says:

    55rebel:

    “On their journey through Intergalactic space, the photons are constantly absorbed and re-emitted, undergoing a shift in wavelength each time. However, as to whether a photon collides or not will depend upon the laws of chance and as a result, some photons will make more collisions than others and thus undergo a different redshift. This means that there will be a spread of redshifts for a particular absorption line. That is, the redshifted absorption lines in the spectra from distant galaxies should not be the sharp lines that we see in the laboratory, but should be ‘broadened’. This is what we expect to see and also what we do see.” —
    http://lyndonashmore.com/photo.....spread.htm

    I don’t remember seeing this argument before but it’s obviously wrong. Statistically, every photon has the same probability of interacting with x electrons over so many light years. This mean that the redshift will be the same for all photons over a very long distance.

  24. 24
    55rebel says:

    “This mean that the redshift will be the same for all photons over a very long distance.”

    But yet… the evidence–the observed photon redshift spread, and probability curve, state otherwise.
    BTW, this isn’t an argument…. only facts.

    It is correct to say, that every photon has the same chance, but this Does not mean that every photon will.

    This is like saying/claiming that “every man is created equal”….. BTW, how is that working out for you/us?

  25. 25
    kairosfocus says:

    One word: scattering.

  26. 26
    Mapou says:

    55rebel:

    “This mean that the redshift will be the same for all photons over a very long distance.”

    But yet… the evidence–the observed photon redshift spread, and probability curve, state otherwise.
    BTW, this isn’t an argument…. only facts.

    It is correct to say, that every photon has the same chance, but this Does not mean that every photon will.

    This is like saying/claiming that “every man is created equal”….. BTW, how is that working out for you/us?

    I don’t get the analogy. Sorry. It does not make sense to me. And it’s more than just facts. The interpretation is that the spread is caused by unequal electron interactions among photons. This is an interpretation, not a fact. There are many more things in empty space than electrons. EM waves are all over the place and photon-photon interactions are also possible.

    Statistical averages over huge distances are pretty solid. It’s like flipping a coin a trillion times. Over the long run, there will be an almost equal number of heads and tails. The difference will be insignificant. The laws of probability guarantee this. So, at least in my opinion, the accepted interpretation of the cause of the redshift spread is likely mistaken.

  27. 27
    55rebel says:

    that’s funny, I could have sworn that the law of probability, within the scope that we are analyzing here, was NOT a level playing field. Please, do a Google search on the “probability curve”. Sorry, but your logic is severely compromised here.

    Is there other reactions going on, besides photon > electron reactions? Wow, no shit Sherlock, but what does that have to do with the fact of the photon > electron event and its byproduct?! This is NOT an opinion.

    Sorry if you don’t get the analogy, but it IS a valid one. Simply put… your statistics suck. Meaning… No connection to the observed reality/facts, period.

  28. 28
    55rebel says:

    “One word: scattering.”

    One word: ignorance.

    If that was the word kairosfocus, then we could not see, with any clarity, much beyond our own galaxy, let alone, within this galaxy….do the math. There is only one logical solution to this dilemma, and that would be… that the ultra-cold plasma is acting like a glass….transmitting the photon in the same direction as received, without scatter.

  29. 29
    Mapou says:

    55rebel @27,

    Your reasoning is something special. I’m wasting your time and mine. See you around.

  30. 30
    kairosfocus says:

    55R:

    Once light goes through a medium with scattering centres, such as dust, molecules, electrons etc, it will scatter, and in scattering there will be loss of direction [thus blurring and breakup eventually of images . . . think smoke or fog as a low end case], also the definition of spectral lines will suffer, and there will be frequency-/ wavelength-sensitive effects.

    A common case is the blue sky and the reddish sunrise/sunset. Red, being scattered less than blue.

    So, indeed, there will be an issue that if scattering effects are dominant, there will be an expected loss of definition of increasingly distant objects. But as you noted, we do not see this. Likewise, the spectral lines that show red shifts are still fairly crisp rather than showing the degree of stochastic smearing out that would be expected of a random scattering process.

    I suggest you ponder diverse views on the tired light thesis.

    For instance: http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~wright/kierein.html

    also: http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~wright/tiredlit.htm

    and here

    vs here: http://www.newtonphysics.on.ca/hubble/

    On balance, an expanding universe framework, though not itself without challenges is the best explanation of the pattern of phenomena we have. And, whether or no you are inclined to accept it, there is a significant body of evidence that backs a stellar lifespan- mass-luminosity- spectrum- HR model, which then matches a lot of things, most strikingly the branch from main sequence to the giants branches seen for stellar clusters. Which, supports the 10 – 20 BY framework for cosmological age, consistent with the ~ 14 BY frame that expansion patterns have long pointed to.

    So, while it is rational to ponder alternatives, we must also reckon with the pattern of observations out there that have led to the dominant cosmological view.

    This one is not a case of ideology imposing itself on evidence.

    KF

  31. 31
    Mung says:

    Thanks for your posts KF.

  32. 32
    Mapou says:

    I now realize that I had earlier misunderstood 55rebel’s position. I agree with 55rebel that the evidence for accelerated expansion is flimsy and even contradictory. For one, accelerated expansion would mean that the farthest stars/galaxies are moving away from us as speeds greater than the speed of light.

  33. 33
    55rebel says:

    “I suggest you ponder diverse views on the tired light thesis.
    For instance: http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~wright/kierein.html
    also: http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~wright/tiredlit.htm

    Yeah, I’m way ahead of you on that one; been there done that. Nothing but outdated, and in many ways just plain blatantly false info. Good Luck with that.

    Instead of trying to debunk those sites here, I’ll just hand you over to Michael, who is much better than I at this sort of thing. Follow some of his links…. you’ll soon begin to get the picture…. if, of course, you aren’t one of those who are blissfully content on being willfully ignorant of reality. Once you gain a basic understanding of plasma physics, and the fact that our universe is something like 90% plasma, and the Huge role it plays in what we observe out there, you’ll never return to BB land again, and you’ll actually see it for what it really is… just plain silly.

    http://www.thunderbolts.info/f.....8;start=75

    I’ll just stick with what I know to be closest to reality–PC/EU/TL, and pass, on the metaphysics–BB, inflation, dark matter/energy, etc…

    Thanks for that Mapou…. glad to see, that you see some light in my madness 😛

  34. 34
    kairosfocus says:

    55R:

    I have already pointed to the core issue on any scattering model, its stochastic character and implications for spectral lines and definition of distant objects. That starts with things as familiar as dust or smoke.

    The observations indicate that the dominant effect is sharp, red-shifted spectral lines and sharp images of extremely distant objects. Yes, some “dust” cloud and ion effects happen, but the dominant pattern far better fits Doppler-like red shifting due to relative motion.

    I have also pointed to the HR framework, the physics of large H-rich gas balls, and their further implications. The case of the HR diagrams of clusters. Those support a stellar age framework of on the order of 1 – 10 BY, fitting the 10 – 20 BY framework for cosmological age. Which fits the Hubble expansion framework.

    It is rational to consider limitations and issues as well as alternatives, but it is also reasonable to recognise that there is a reason behind the generally accepted framework.

    KF

  35. 35
    Mung says:

    Mapou: …accelerated expansion would mean that the farthest stars/galaxies are moving away from us as speeds greater than the speed of light.

    So?

  36. 36
    kairosfocus says:

    Mung, the expansion is of space itself; hence my expanding, baking raisin-laced bun comparison. KF

  37. 37
    Mapou says:

    KF:

    Mung, the expansion is of space itself;

    I have heard this before. There is no science in it, of course. Space is made of what again? What is the composition of space and has anybody succeeded in isolating the particles that comprise space?

    The answer is no, of course. Why? Because space is abstract. It does not exist except as a figment in the imaginations of eternally delusional relativists.

    To Mung: You obviously believe in superluminal travel. Good luck with that.

  38. 38
    55rebel says:

    “and ion effects happen, but…”

    It’s amazing how you can brush aside 90% of what this universe consist of, as being insignificant in its effect…. Funny *giggles*

    Allllrightly-then.

  39. 39
    55rebel says:

    “Mapou: …accelerated expansion would mean that the farthest stars/galaxies are moving away from us as speeds greater than the speed of light.”

    Mung: “So?”

    So, can this be replicated here on planet earth? If not, then Why not? We create explosions all the time: tiny ones, little ones, medium ones, big ones, and ungodly huge ones. If space is expanding–exponentially so, as you/they claim, then it would be logical to expect, that it would be happening right ‘here’ also; but alas, they all fizzle out– inversely so…. Please, Do explain the discrimination. Thanks

  40. 40
    daveS says:

    55rebel,

    This paper explains how the fact that we can observe galaxies receding at velocities greater than c does not violate either SR or GR.

  41. 41
    Mung says:

    Mapou: You obviously believe in superluminal travel. Good luck with that.

    No, I just don’t believe that if you and I start at the same location on I-10 and you head east at 60 mph and I head west at 60 mph that I should pay any particular attention to someone who says it’s just not possible for either of us to travel faster than 60mph, therefore we can’t be 120 miles apart after an hour.

    But then, I’m no cosmopolitan.

  42. 42
    Mapou says:

    Mung, you are absolutely correct. However, nature is a little bit more complicated than that. It is impossible to measure superluminal speeds by any means. Why? It’s because the speed of light is already factored in the physics of our measuring instruments. It’s like using a ruler to measure itself. You always get the same answer regardless of the actual length of the ruler.

    Therefore, our interpretation (accelerated expansion) of the redshift data is wrong. It has nothing to do with speed. It’s probably a good measure of distance, though.

    As Roseanne Roseannadanna would say, “Well, Mung, it just goes to show you, it’s always something — if it ain’t one thing, it’s another.”

  43. 43
    55rebel says:

    A critical introduction to Einsteins theory of relativity, written by a non-scientist for other non-scientists who have some intellectual curiosity about this famous theory, with pictures in it and 140 references and citations to authority. 30 pages:
    http://www.gsjournal.net/old/ntham/amesbury.pdf
    Trust me…. well worth the read.

    An excerpt…

    “Thirdly, the reader should know that this equation had been derived before, and is hence
    not dependant upon, special relativity. Albert did not derive this formula from his special theory of relativity, but from Maxwell?s equation for electromagnetic radiation pressure, which was published in the 1860s. Thompson, Heaviside, Hertz, Lorentz, and Poincare derived this equation for the kinetic energy of an electron, also without reference to relativity theory. Both Carl Zapffe in 1982 and Milan Pavlovic in 1994 have meticulously and independently demonstrated that this equation can be derived by classical means a without reference to special relativity.[80] Wherefore, this equation cannot be considered a product of, or even a part of, relativity theory. The relationship E=mc 2 “arises just as readily from Maxwellian field theory and the momentum conservation law—as Einstein himself admitted in a generally overlooked essay written during his later years.”[81]

  44. 44
    daveS says:

    Wow. That’s good stuff. Random quote from page 11:

    Now imagine yourself as the pilot of a jet aircraft with a horn and a headlight in its nose cone. You are flying at 650 mph. If you sound the horn, because sound travels at about 700 mph, the sound is only traveling 50 mph faster than you are. Yet, according to relativity theory apologists, if you turned the headlight on, because c is supposed to be constant within any reference frame, the light beam would travel at c ahead of you, not c minus 650 mph. This is patent, unmitigated nonsense.

    Any relativity skeptics want to explain why it’s nonsense, rather than simply asserting so?

  45. 45
    daveS says:

    The last two paragraphs of the paper that 55rebel linked to are quite revealing:

    “Einstein’s theory of relativity” is substantially science fiction, fantasy or philosophy, and represents the worst of science: how science can become political, how political factors can affect funding, how funding can affect scientists’ jobs and careers, how experimental data can be manipulated to serve as propaganda, and how theory can be presented as fact.

    Scientific theories come and go. It is about time “Einstein’s theory of relativity” went. Special Relativity and Zionism will fall together because they are inseparable. The day will come when nobody even mentions either of them anymore. Physicists need only scrap the erroneous hypotheses of length contraction, time dilation, mass distortion, the c speed limit, space-time and curved space, and science will be reasonable and back on track again.

    😐

  46. 46
    Mapou says:

    daveS @45,

    That site is obviously anti-semitic. While I agree that Einsteinian physics will one day disappear (most of it is BS) and that Einstein did become a sort of hero/savior for Jews worldwide, I understand why they did it: self-preservation under persecution. I have no problem with Zionism for this reason. It’s a form of self defence. But I think Jews should put their faith elsewhere, IMO.

    Einsteinian physics is bad because nothing can move in Einstein’s spacetime and relativists still can’t understand that time is not a variable by definition. Among other equally awful things.

    PS. I also disagree with that page about the speed of light limit. In fact, I don’t think it’s a limit at all. It is the only possible speed in the universe, period. Nothing can move slower or faster. Objects that appear to be moving at ordinary speeds are actually not moving at all most of the time. Movement consists of tiny quantum jumps interspersed with rests. Why? Because the universe is discrete.

  47. 47
    drc466 says:

    kf @34,

    It is rational to consider limitations and issues as well as alternatives, but it is also reasonable to recognise that there is a reason behind the generally accepted framework.

    Just out of curiosity – given all the problems with all current cosmological models including the 10-20By Big Bang model (e.g. quantized redshifts, CMB horizon problem, lack of any evidence of “young” galaxies or star formation in process, Arp’s quasars, etc., etc.), wouldn’t you agree that this is a bit like saying “the accepted framework is the worst theory, except for all the others”?

  48. 48
    anthropic says:

    Mapou 46
    ” Objects that appear to be moving at ordinary speeds are actually not moving at all most of the time. Movement consists of tiny quantum jumps interspersed with rests. Why? Because the universe is discrete.”

    This sounds very much like occasionalism, a doctrine of orthodox Sunni Muslims. Basically they argue that motion is an illusion; when a man “throws” a ball, God (Allah) destroys and recreates the universe at every instant with the ball in a slightly different location.

    If true, cause and effect are severed. Science is dead. Which, of course, it has been in Muslim societies for centuries.

  49. 49
    Mapou says:

    anthropic:

    Mapou 46
    ” Objects that appear to be moving at ordinary speeds are actually not moving at all most of the time. Movement consists of tiny quantum jumps interspersed with rests. Why? Because the universe is discrete.”

    This sounds very much like occasionalism, a doctrine of orthodox Sunni Muslims. Basically they argue that motion is an illusion; when a man “throws” a ball, God (Allah) destroys and recreates the universe at every instant with the ball in a slightly different location.

    Very interesting. I would not dismiss it out of hand just because it came from Sunni Muslims. Understanding motion is not nearly as simple as you think. Modern physicists have no clue as to why a particle in inertial motion remains in motion.

    Think about it. If a particle moves it must go from one state to another. How does a particle transform itself from A to B. Somehow A must disappear and make room for B. Change is necessarily the process of destroying the old and constructing the new. It makes sense to suppose, however, that nature must have access to both states.

    My own preferred theory is slightly different than the one you mentioned in that both A (the before) and B (the after) exists simultaneously. I call this dual state the present or the now. During a transformation, B becomes A and the old A is replaced by a new B.

    The problem is that no particle can create or destroy itself. Something else must do it. What could it be? I have an idea but this is not the forum for it.

    If true, cause and effect are severed. Science is dead.

    I don’t see why this is true. If anything, it gives them a plausible mechanism for cause and effect. A change is nature’s way of correcting a violation to a conservation principle. Something must be responsible for the change.

    Which, of course, it has been in Muslim societies for centuries.

    Muslims were not always like this. They used to be much more liberal and very much in love with knowledge and the arts. But all organized religions eventually degenerate into crap.

  50. 50
    55rebel says:

    daveS:
    “Any relativity skeptics want to explain why it’s nonsense, rather than simply asserting so?”

    If you had read the critical introduction to relativity, you would now know why, and that it wasn’t just an assertion. It’s pretty much spelled out for you, within. Is this how you assert all your confused replies, by randomly picking out a paragraph and responding based upon that single paragraph?

    And…

    “The last two paragraphs of the paper that 55rebel linked to are quite revealing: ”

    Nothing like throwing out the baby with the bathwater…

  51. 51
    55rebel says:

    kf @34,
    “it is also reasonable to recognise that there is a reason behind the generally accepted framework.”

    Yeah, just like the generally accepted framework in Galileo’s time! An accepted framework based upon a flawed foundation.

  52. 52
    daveS says:

    rebel55,

    If you had read the critical introduction to relativity, you would now know why, and that it wasn’t just an assertion. It’s pretty much spelled out for you, within. Is this how you assert all your confused replies, by randomly picking out a paragraph and responding based upon that single paragraph?

    Can you please point to the specific passage where he does this?

  53. 53
    anthropic says:

    Mapou 49

    Hey, Mapou. The history of Muslim thought is a fascinating subject, especially how it relates to their cultural development. The best book I’ve read on the subject is “The Closing of the Muslim Mind” by Rick Reilly. He points to the victory of Asharite theology over the Mutazalites around 1,000 AD as hugely significant in why Muslim societies eventually became cultural and scientific backwaters.

    The Asharites emphasized the idea that God was Power and Will. Thus, He controls and dictates all things; secondary causes do not exist. What we call “natural laws” are just God’s habits (“ada”); today striking a match is followed by a flame, tomorrow it could be frost. it’s totally up to the whim of Allah. Thus, there is no such thing as cause and effect, and no reason to assume the universe is a rational place of uniform laws.

    Reilly points out this idea stems from a fundamentally unknowable and irrational God. Indeed, a rational, law-giving God is “shirk”, blasphemy, because He would then be bound by rationality, and God is bound by nothing.

    Without rational, uniform natural laws, science cannot be done. Doubly so since in Islam we are not created in God’s image so cannot be expected to think the thoughts of God after Him, as Kepler put it. The very idea is shirk, which is why Pakistan banned weather forecasts for a time in the 1980s.

  54. 54
    55rebel says:

    daveS:
    “Can you please point to the specific passage where he does this?”

    “2. In 1913, French physicist Georges Sagnac (1869-1926), used a rotating interferometer to conclusively establish experimentally that the speed of light is not constant to all observers. The Earth at its equator is like a large rotating disk with a speed of 463.8 m/s to the east. Many tests have proven that, because of this Sagnac effect, the velocity of electromagnetic radio signals from GPS satellites is unequal in east-west directions. This irrefutably invalidates the hypothesis that c is constant to all observers.39”

    And…
    Not that there is any such thing as a Black Hole, but…
    “5. Generally accepted by astronomers, modern black hole theory also discredits this
    postulate. A black hole is hypothesized to be an extremely dense, compact interstellar
    object which has such a powerful gravitational field that even light cannot escape from
    it—hence it is black.46 Wherefore, if a light beam were to enter the gravitational field
    of a black hole, it would not be able to exit. According to the calculations of
    Cambridge-trained theoretical physicist Joao Magueijo, PhD and his VSL (varying
    speed of light) model, at the horizon of a Black Hole c may be reduced to zero—light
    photons may stop entirely.47 It is reasonable to assume that before gravitational
    attraction of the Black Hole stops a light beam, it must slow it down first. Hence, the
    velocity of the light cannot be constant.”

    Also…
    “In 1851, Fizeau also found that when a beam of light is passed through flowing water, the
    velocity of light is greater when it is flowing downstream with the flow, and lesser when it is
    flowing upstream against the flow.”

    daveS, stop being lazy, and just read the article, because it spells this out in more ways than one–directly and indirectly, via demonstrative evidence by various researchers.

  55. 55
    daveS says:

    Thanks, 55rebel.

    I actually did read the part about the Sagnac effect, but assumed you were referring to something else, because it is incorrect. Max von Laue actually predicted this phenomenon using special relativity two years before Sagnac observed it. No knowledgeable person today interprets the Sagnac effect as being evidence against relativity. I have no idea why Amesbury included this stuff in his paper.

    Regarding the VSL theories referred to by Magueijo, even he refers to them as “scientific speculation”. There are also a lot of them, some of which he even calls “Lorentz invariant” (!) If one of these theories is developed further and finds experimental support, fine, but currently it’s out on the fringes.

    I also noticed the late Tom Van Flandern’s name in the paper in connection with the speed of propagation of gravity. Amesbury fails to mention that the 18th century theory of gravity that Van Flandern subscribed to was rejected long ago. (Not to mention Van Flandern was a Cydonia crackpot toward the end of his life).

    It looks like Amesbury has no idea what he’s talking about, and is motivated only by hatred for Einstein, along with the anti-Semitism, unfortunately.

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