Wednesday, September 12, 2018
BEYOND A THEORY OF EVERYTHING
BEYOND A THEORY OF EVERTYTHING
After the experimental validation that the general theory of relativity in 1919, Einstein spent the rest of his life trying to develop a unified field theory that he hoped would link the forces of gravity, electricity and magnetism in one mathematically consistent paradigm. He was not successful, perhaps partly because the so-called weak and strong subatomic forces had not yet been discovered; but, even though Einstein didn’t succeed, his efforts inspired the search for what physicists began to refer to as the “theory of everything”. It was thought that such a theory would reveal all of the mathematical relationships between matter, energy, space and time. The idea that such a theory was possible fit into the philosophy of physicalism, a philosophy of science based on the belief that literally everything could be explained in terms of combinations and permutations of the four fundamental physical forms: matter, energy, space and time.
The dream of a theory of everything (TOE) is not new. In a sense, it expresses the goal of all science. The Greek philosopher Democritus (c.a. 460 – 370 BC), for example, thought that a complete understanding atoms, the building blocks of the universe, would lead to understanding everything.
Pierre-Simon Marquis de Laplace expressed it this way:
An intellect which at a certain moment would know all forces that set nature in motion, and all positions of all items of which nature is composed, if this intellect were also vast enough to submit these data to analysis, it would embrace in a single formula the movements of the greatest bodies of the universe and those of the tiniest atom; for such an intellect nothing would be uncertain and the future just like the past would be present before its eyes.
— Essai philosophique sur les probabilités, Introduction, 1814
Stephen Hawking, in a high-profile lecture in 1980, predicted that the coveted TOE would probably be found by the year 2000. Eight or ten years later, in an early popular book, he repeated the prediction more positively. but it still didn’t happen, but he kept thinking and writing about a final theory of everything in a series of books until he passed away in March 2018. In the 1980 lecture, he mistakenly stated that Kurt Gӧdel’s Incompleteness Theorem proved that a TOE based on physical axioms is possible. Later, he realized that Gӧdel’s theorem proved almost the exact opposite. It suggested that while a TOE might be possible, such a theory could not be derived from a finite set of physical axioms. This was not the first time Stephen Hawking had to revise statements he made about the mathematical description of a TOE. In the late 1960s, exploring solutions of Einstein’s field equations, he famously concluded that the big-bang universe began in a space-time singularity, a dimensionless point. But he had to reverse his position later, and in his book A Brief History of Time, 1988, P. 50, he stated that "…there was in fact no singularity at the beginning of the universe."
Stephen Hawking is not the first scientist to be wrong about something. In fact, I think you might be hard pressed to find a scientist who was or is never wrong, - even Einstein. Einstein called his decision regarding the cosmological constant in his relativity field equations his greatest blunder. His blunder was not that there was a cosmological constant. Understandably, he set the constant at the value necessary to have a stationary universe, which was the consensus among astronomers and cosmologists at the time (1917). The blunder he referred to was that he didn’t realize that the universe could be expanding, contracting or stationary, depending on the value of the constant.
It is not my intention to be unnecessarily critical of Professors Hawking and Einstein. Clearly, they were both geniuses, with reported IQs of 155 (Hawking) and 160 (Einstein), My point is that they were, after all, only human. They made mistakes. The level of fame attained by both men sometimes causes people to think of them as infallible. They were not. My second point is that science must move beyond the physicalist idea of a theory of everything.
The TOE envisioned by physicalists is a serious misdirection of scientific efforts toward a shiny object that does not exist. As Max Planck stated unequivocally: “there is no matter as such”. With the discovery of gimmel, the third form of the substance of reality, a form that has no mass or energy, we know that a large portion of the universe is not physical in the sense of consisting of physical matter and energy as measured in the Large Hadron Collider. We have shown with TDVP that most of what is being called dark matter and dark energy, is not matter or energy at all. It is the form of reality we are calling gimmel, and it likely has a direct relationship to what has traditionally been called spirit or consciousness.
A real description of reality must include all of reality, including consciousness, not just the physical tip of the iceberg.
The purpose of this post is to re-introduce the post below: DESCRIBING THE TRUE NATURE OF REALITY, which I’ve just updated. Please read on.