TWELVE: ANALYSIS OF THE OBVIOUS
Copyright 2022, Edward R. Close, PhD
“It requires a very unusual mind to undertake the analysis of the obvious.” - Alfred North Whitehead (a quote worth repeating)
Max Planck: An Exceptional Mind Questions the Obvious
What could be more obvious than visible light? It illuminates our reality, bouncing off of everything we see. What is more basic? Matter, perhaps? In 1874, a very gifted young man named Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck, entering the University of Munich at the age of 16, sought some guidance about what to do with his life. He was interested in music, mathematics, and physics. A well-meaning professor of physics at the university advised him against pursuing a career in physics. The reason Professor Phillip von Jolly gave for his advice was simple: “In this field,” he declared “almost everything has already been discovered; all that remains is to fill in a few insignificant gaps.” Despite this discouraging advice, Max Planck decided to pursue a career in physics.
In an essay, A Scientific Autobiography, published in 1948, Planck wrote:
“My original decision to devote myself to science was a direct result of the discovery… of the far from obvious fact that the laws of human reasoning coincide with the laws governing the sequences of the impressions we receive from the world about us; that therefore, by pure reasoning, man can gain insight into the mechanism of the latter. In this connection, it is of paramount importance that the outside world is something independent from man, something absolute, and the quest for the laws which apply to this absolute appeared to me as the most sublime scientific pursuit in life.”
I agree with this Platonic view of reality. A similar discovery early in my life also inspired me to embark on the study of mathematics and physics, but my discovery included a deeper fact, also far from obvious, that underlies the coinciding laws Max Planck described in the statement above, the fact that consciousness is a primary aspect of reality. That realization is the most basic axiom upon which transcendental physics and TDVP are founded. It can be stated as follows:
The laws governing the internal structure of finite consciousness and the external structures of objective reality coincide with the laws of primary logic governing finite reality existing within the infinitely continuous field of Primary Consciousness.
Discovery of these laws is the goal of science, and the expansion of finite consciousness to experience the logical structures of infinite reality is the purpose of life. Recognition of these facts gives value and meaning to all physical, intellectual, and spiritual existence.
Planck was fascinated by the elegance and predictive power of the basic laws of physics that were known at that time, including laws governing the motion of solid objects (Newton’s laws of motion) and the laws governing the motion of energy, like Boltzmann’s constant and the laws of thermodynamics. His conviction that the laws governing the internal logic of human reasoning actually coincide with the laws governing the external world inspired him to look for clues to additional absolutes hidden in plain sight in experimental data. He knew that such absolutes would resolve conflicts between incomplete scientific formulations that worked for some dynamic relationships between matter and energy, but not for others.
Planck found one such clue in a fact that was obvious to anyone who had ever watched a blacksmith work with heated metal. The color of the glow of heated metal changes from black to red, and red to white, as the metal is heated to higher and higher temperatures. Wilhelm Wein’s law relating the frequency of emitted light to the temperature of heated metals worked well for high frequencies but failed at lower frequencies. Because of this, other physicists had proposed laws governing specific portions of the energy spectrum. In an intuitive leap, Planck wrote a simple equation combing equations that worked for low frequencies with Wien’s law for high frequencies. It proved to be so accurate at predicting experimental results, that it was quickly accepted and became known as Planck’s law.
A lesser scientist would have rested on his laurels and basked in the success of having a “law” bearing his name. But Planck, like Plato, knew that the laws of nature reside in the absolute realm of the perfect logic of mind and matter, and that a true law could be validated by derivation from first principles. So, he set about the task of deriving the new law from first principles underlying the laws of thermodynamics.
Validation of Planck’s law, combined with the experimental verification of Einstein’s theory of relativity almost two decades later, led to proof of the quantum equivalence of mass and energy. It is safe to say that Planck’s findings undoubtedly surprised professor von Jolly. Not only had “almost everything” in physics NOT “already been discovered”, in fact, scientists had not even suspected that something so fundamental was still waiting to be discovered. To be fair, Professor von Jolly is not the only scientist who has made the mistake of thinking that science can explain everything. There are a number of examples of this unwarranted confidence in materialistic determinism, but I will mention only two very prominent examples here.
In 1814, Pierre-Simon Marquis de Laplace, impressed with the successes of the calculus introduced by Newton and Leibniz just 100 years before, said: “We may regard the present state of the universe as the effect of its past and the cause of its future.” He believed that the initial conditions of the universe would soon be known, and that a single formula would be derived to describe the physical existence and movement of everything from the most “massive object to the tiniest object in the universe”, so that, in his words, “nothing would be uncertain and the future, just like the past, would be known”.
The second, a more recent example of this unverified confidence in physical science can be found in the writings of the late theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking. In his first book written for the general public, A Brief History of Time, published in 1988, Professor Hawking predicted that we would have a complete theory of everything by the year 2000, or soon thereafter. He boldly declared that the long-coveted theory of everything “would be the ultimate triumph of human reason - for then,” he said, “we should know the mind of God.” And he also reiterated his belief that he had proved that the universe originated in the explosion of a mathematical singularity, i.e., a dimensionless point more than 13 billion years ago.
A Brief History
Prior to writing for the general public, Professor Hawking had achieved a remarkable amount of recognition and acclaim in the mainstream scientific community, despite the fact that he was horribly afflicted with a rare, early-onset, slowly progressing, lethal form of amyotrophic lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Much of his well-justified acclaim resulted from the extension of the central concept of his doctoral thesis, which was application of the mathematical singularity theorem to physical cosmology.
In an essay co-authored with Sir Roger Penrose In 1970, Hawking published his proof. He declared that, if the general theory of relativity is a valid model of the universe, then the entire universe must have originated from the sudden explosion of an infinitely dense mathematical singularity. Even though I disagreed with many of Hawking’s assumptions and conclusions, because of his confident belief that a theory of everything was just around the corner, in 1989 (coincidentally the year I received my doctorate) I sent him a pre-publication copy of the manuscript of my second book, Infinite Continuity, respectfully asking for peer-review comments.
Who was I to imagine that a famous scientist like Stephen Hawking would actually bother to read something from someone he had never heard of? I would not have been surprised if the manuscript had been returned unopened, but I reasoned that he might be intrigued by some of the results I had obtained by applying the calculus of distinctions to the Hubble redshift, and the big-bang expanding-universe model of physical reality, revealing logical paradoxes in the mainstream theory known as the standard model of particle physics.
I was familiar with the Hawking-Penrose proof and had read A Brief History of Time from cover to cover before I sent my Infinite Continuity manuscript to Professor Hawking, so I knew there were several things in the manuscript that he would be likely to disagree with very strongly. For example, I disputed the very idea that a physical “theory of everything” was possible, based on Kurt Gödel’s proof of the incompleteness theorems, and based on the universal law of conservation of mass and energy, I concluded that there was, and could be, no absolute beginning of, or end to physical reality.
After about two months, Professor Hawking returned my manuscript with a brief note saying that he was too busy to do a thorough review of it, but he made one short comment, proving that he had at least scanned it. He said: “I can’t imagine three-dimensional time.” A few months later, in a public lecture, he mentioned that someone had suggested to him that time might be three-dimensional; and in his writings and lectures published since A brief History of Time, he publicly revised his claim that we would soon have a complete theory of everything. He also said: “It may be a mistake to talk about a beginning or end of the universe”. The reasons he gave for revising the bold predictions and conclusions stated in his first popular book were the same reasons I had outlined in Infinite Continuity.
Did exposure to my ideas have anything to do with Professor Hawking’s about-face on these basic issues? Maybe. I don’t know. But, while I still disagree with some of his assumptions, especially his self-proclaimed atheistic metaphysical position, I respect and admire him because of the intellectual honesty and integrity he exhibited by reconsidering the evidence and revising the very ideas that had brought him fame and fortune. That is the undeniable hallmark of a real scientist.
The Analysis of the Obvious
So, why have I spent time and space here sharing my thoughts about Max Planck and Stephen Hawking? Because sometimes the obvious is not obvious at all until the accumulated complexities built on unwarranted assumptions are cleared away. In Part Ten of this series, we saw that the seemingly reasonable assumption that spacetime is infinitely divisible leads to paradoxical results. This unwarranted assumption is corrected with the establishment of the CoDD, TRUE quantum units based on the mass and volume of the free electron, and the principle of quantum equivalence. Validated by rigorous mathematical proof and statistical analysis of data from numerous meticulous Large Hadron Collider experiments, the principle of quantum equivalence applies to all measurements of the basic variable parameters of physical reality, namely time, space, energy, and mass.
In plain English: All of the dimensions of the stable structures of the physical universe are quantized at an unimaginably small scale. This means that at the very smallest scale possible, all measurements are whole-number multiples of the most basic units possible. Those units are the triadic rotational units of equivalence (TRUE). Because of this, descriptions of reality in the arithmetic, algebra, and calculus of the CoDD are in the form of multi-dimensional Diophantine equations.
Diophantine equations are equations whose variables and solutions are limited to integers, in this case, whole-number multiples of TRUE (3-D quantum units based on the rest mass and volume of the free electron). These equations are called “Diophantine” in honor of Diophantus of Alexandria, who wrote about them around 250 A.D. (More about this later.)
The beauty of the TDVP quantum calculus is the way it enables us to identify and clear away the clutter of the misleading conceptual debris of things that actually do not exist in reality, like dimensionless points, one- and two- dimensional objects, and massless particles. By doing so, we become able to have a clearer, more direct awareness of quantum phenomena that cannot be accessed through the limited functioning of the physical senses and their technological enhancements.
Max Planck and Stephen Hawking were knocking on the doors of the absolute truths that Diophantus and Plato hypothesized about 2000 years ago; but they were focusing on the opposite ends of the scale of physical measurement. Planck’s work has extended human awareness down to the smallest possible physical reality at the quantum scale, while Hawking’s work attempts to expand consciousness all the way to the greatest possible physical extent, the cosmological edge of the expanding universe.
What does all this have to do with analysis of the obvious and the goals of this series of posts? I’m glad you asked. The remarkable discoveries of these two brilliant scientists prove that we can investigate aspects of reality that exist beyond the range of ordinary observation and measurement. The threshold leading to expanded states of consciousness, mentioned in earlier posts and publications, invites us to take the next step, which is investigation of non-physical phenomena. Like the infinitesimally small, the cosmologically large, and consciousness itself, the non-physical part of reality becomes obvious once you are aware that it exists; but, due to our habitual identification with our physical bodies and incomplete conceptual models of reality created from the limited data provided by our physical senses, it is hidden in plain sight.
It is one thing for me to tell you that the analytical methods of the TDVP have proved that the physical universe is only a small fraction of a much larger reality consisting of higher-order non-physical dimensional domains that shape and sustain everything, and that as human beings, we are capable of gradually expanding our consciousness to become aware of it and interact with it, and quite another thing for you to experience it for yourself. It is my intention in these posts to peel back at least a small corner of the façade of materialism covering the true nature of reality and suggest ways that you may be able to experience more of the depth and elegant beauty of the non-physical aspect of reality for yourself. One way to do this is to share some of my own firsthand experiences of OBEs, NDEs, consciousness expansions, and time travel, in addition to providing the paradigm shifting results of TDVP TRUE analysis.
Expanding the Boundaries of Science
It was final exam week at the end of the first semester of my second year as an undergraduate physics/math student. I was making the rounds of my final exams with a full schedule of classes in physics, mathematics, German, and logic. I wanted to finish each exam quickly, in order to have as much time as possible to shift my focus to the subject matter of the next exam. When I sat down to take the thermodynamics final, I was shocked, along with everyone else in the class, to see that the whole exam consisted of just one sentence written in large block letters on the blackboard. It said, “Derive the Laws of Thermodynamics from first principles using the finite difference method.”
This was a closed-book exam, so we were not allowed to use reference books or notes, students were separated by the distance of at least one unoccupied desk, and the exam was closely monitored by the professor and his assistants. The purpose of exams in math and physics in those days before the internet was to find out if you knew the course material, not to see if you knew how to look things up. Professors in the math and physics departments seemed to be competing to see whose classes could be the most difficult, and this was before hand-held calculators were available and a long time before i-pads and smart phones. We were allowed to use slide rules, but I preferred to do calculations by hand, especially on exams, to avoid misplacing decimal points and to make sure I understood the logic of the process. Final exams were stressful. We knew that our scores could count for up to 50% of our grade for the semester.
I knew that the first law was the conservation of energy law, the second law stated that the entropy (disorder) of an isolated system increases in natural processes, and the third law said that entropy approaches zero at the temperature of absolute zero. I also knew that these laws were expressed in terms of infinitesimal differences, and that the finite difference method involved approximating derivatives using Taylor series expansions. but I didn’t have a clue about how to derive the laws of thermodynamics from first principles using the finite difference method. So, after a few minutes of panic, I composed myself and simply wrote “I give up!” on a single sheet of paper, folded the paper, signed my name on the outside, and dropped it into the final exam basket at the front of the room on my way out.
The laws of thermodynamics arise from some “obvious” things about physical reality, like 1) You can’t make something out of nothing, 2) things generally deteriorate over time, and 3) nothing moves at absolute zero. When I thought about the statement on the blackboard, I had nothing. So, instead of sweating for an hour, trying to make something out of nothing, I decided that I should conserve my negative entropy and seek thermal equilibrium by moving on to my next exam.
The next day, on my way to the calculus final, I ran into one of my classmates who was also a physics major.
“What in the world did you do on that Thermo exam?” He asked.
“Not much.” I answered - I didn’t want to tell him what I actually wrote on my exam paper! “What did you do?”
“I wrote down everything I could remember about conservation of energy and entropy from the lectures and the reading assignments, but I don’t recall anything about finite difference derivations. - I don’t think I did very well!”
“You and me, both!” I thought, as I hurried on to the calculus exam.
After the semester break, students were crowded around bulletin boards all across campus looking to see if their final exam scores had been posted. On the lists posted in the physics department, under Thermodynamics, I was surprised to see an A after my name!
“That’s got to be a mistake!” I thought. I had an A going into the finals with a 98% average on tests and homework, but the average of 98 and zero is 49, eleven points below a passing grade. I was hoping to see a D, which would indicate that I would be allowed to do extra work to raise the grade and avoid the embarrassment of having an F on my record. By what miracle did I get an A for the semester?
Dr. Harley Rutledge was a “new” PhD, just out of Graduate school, teaching undergrad physics for the first time that year. When he saw the response (or lack thereof) on the exam papers, he realized that he had given an exam problem that would have been challenging for senior physics students, to a class with only first and second-year undergrad students who had not yet had an advanced course in vector analysis or matrix algebra. On the first day of the second semester, Dr. Rutledge apologized to the class, explaining why he had thrown the final exam out. The entire class breathed a collective sigh of relief.
The miracle of existence is gradually revealed in the resolutions of paradoxes. The deeper the paradox, the more miraculous the resolution, and the more obvious the truth that is revealed will be. The miracle of consciousness is the greatest paradox of all, and the central paradox of consciousness is the co-existence within it of both isolation and unity, separation and oneness, the co-existence of the finite and the infinite. The deepest connections are hidden beneath the noise of daily life, but opportunities for re-connection with the realities of consciousness are there, if you are alert. During the twelve years we called 1955 – 1967, I connected with a number of remarkable people who helped me to expand my consciousness by awakening memories of the past and the future. Harley D. Rutledge was one of those people.
When my Central Methodist College roommate and I began investigating psychic phenomena in 1956, Dr. Rutledge was one of the two professors on campus who supported us. After witnessing one of our experiments, he made a physics lab available to us after hours and on weekends, and he interpreted some very cryptic messages we had received, ostensibly from the consciousness of Albert Einstein, who had died in 1955. Descriptions and symbols that were completely meaningless to us, were immediately recognized by Dr. Rutledge as specific notations in the advanced language of theoretical physics consistent with the work Albert Einstein was doing during the last year of his life.
My roommate and partner in the “psychic science” experiments, David M. Stewart, and I were honor students, but in the middle of the first semester of our third year, we did the unthinkable, we dropped out. Before we left Central to embark on a very different chapter of our lives, I stopped by Dr. Rutledge’s office to tell him goodbye. He knew that I was dropping out of college to pursue more metaphysical truths, but the last thing he said to me was “Good luck Ed! I think you will probably find what you are looking for out there, but because you are a natural-born physicist, I predict that you will return!” He was right.
My roommate and I both returned after a few years. We married two brilliant women. David, who had been a philosophy/English major planning to be a Methodist minister, earned a doctorate in geophysics from the University of Missouri, went on to medical school, and eventually earned an ND, and became known internationally as the polymath founder of two very successful health-care organizations. And, yes, he also became an ordained Methodist minister.
I, on the other hand, after completing my physics/math degree at Central, went on to pursue a master’s degree in theoretical physics at the University of Missouri, to teach mathematics, become a computer programmer, systems analyst, hydrogeologist, certified environmental professional, and registered PE. I eventually earned my PhD in environmental engineering with course work in several universities, including UCLA, UC Davis, Pacific Western University, and Johns Hopkins University.
In February and March of 1973, there was a spate of UFO sightings in the San Francois Mountains of Southeast Missouri, not far from the valley where I was born. Strange colored lights, moving in unusual ways through the hills around the town of Piedmont Missouri and nearby Clearwater Lake were reported by dozens of people, including the Piedmont High School basketball coach, high school students, credible adults, local woodsmen, and farmers. Some of the people reporting UFO sightings were interviewed on the local radio station, and within a short time, even while the UFO activity was still being reported every night, the story was picked up by the national news media.
In 1973, Dr. Rutledge was Chairman of the Physics Department at Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau Missouri on the Mississippi River, about 75 miles east of Piedmont. A couple of his colleagues made the tongue-in-cheek suggestion that maybe Dr. Rutledge should investigate the UFO sightings in Piedmont. He laughed and responded: “I wouldn’t touch that with a ten-foot pole!”. Dr. Rutledge was at the height of his academic career. As a tenured professor at the largest university in Southeast Missouri, Chairman of the Physics Department, and President of the Missouri Academy of Science, he knew that getting involved in a UFO flap could damage his reputation as a scientist and jeopardize his career. But less than two weeks later, something changed his mind.
What changed his mind was his natural curiosity, the same curiosity that he exhibited during the first year of his teaching career at Central Methodist College in 1956, in relation to the experiments in parapsychology that my roommate and I were conducting. Citing curiosity as “the hallmark of all scientists”, in the report of his investigation of the Piedmont UFO phenomena, published in 1981, he said: “My own curiosity about UFOs dated from the early fifties when I read a couple of books by Major Donald Keyhoe: Flying Saucers From Outer Space (1953) and The Flying Saucers Are Real (1960).”
I did find what I was looking for, and I did return to Central to finish my degree in physics and math, and in 1981, my career brought me back to Southeast Missouri, and in the Summer of 1982, I enrolled in classes at Southeast Missouri State University to update my teaching credentials. When I learned that Dr. Rutledge was Chairman of the Physics Department there, I couldn’t wait to visit with him. When I walked into his office at the university - unannounced - between classes, even though it had been 25 years since we had seen each other, he jumped up from his desk, called me by name, and greeted me like an old friend! We both had classes we had to attend to that day, so that meeting was brief, but a few days later, we met again and talked much longer. After reminiscing about the “old days” at Central, he told me about the Piedmont investigation, and many things that had happened since the investigation.
We were both recently published authors, so, after the visit we exchanged books. His book was Project Identification: The first Scientific Study of UFO Phenomena, Prentice-Hall, 1981 (ISBN 0-13-730713-6). The book tells the story of the Piedmont UFO flap and documents the 21-month-long investigation that Dr. Rutledge and a team of professors and students from the university planned and carried out using the most sophisticated equipment available at that time. They collected a lot of very intriguing data, including a number of photographs and recordings of moving UFOs taken from multiple locations with cameras and recorders anchored in place to avoid the shaky images and recordings of hand-held equipment. Knowing the exact distances between the equipment locations, they were able to determine the size of some the UFOs and exactly how far away from the cameras they were by triangulation.
Project Identification consists of 265 pages of description and narrative plus 16 pages of photographs with 36 photos, and numerous drawings and tables. When I saw the photographs of one UFO taken from two different locations at the same time, the difference between the photos suggested to me that I was looking at two-dimensional images of a phenomenon that actually existed in a multi-dimensional domain at least six dimensions. After reading the book, I realized that Dr. Rutledge had related more information about his experiences with the UFOs to me during our meetings than exists in the book. It was quite evident to me that this investigation had had a profound effect on Dr. Rutledge. This was also reflected in a talk he presented at the MUFON symposium in Michigan in1986: Project Identification: Thirteen Years and One-Hundred and Sixty Sightings Later.
The following description of Project Identification is from Wikipedia ( Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Harley_Rutledge&oldid=993620430 (accessed March 4, 2022):
Challenged to explain sightings of unidentified lights and luminous phenomena in the sky around Piedmont, Missouri, Rutledge decided to subject these reports to scientific analysis. He put together a team of observers with training in the physical sciences, including a large array of equipment: RF spectrum analyzers, Quasar telescopes. low-high frequency audio detectors, electromagnetic frequency analyzer, cameras, and a galvanometer to measure variations in the Earth's gravitational field.
The resulting Project Identification commenced in April 1973, logging several hundred hours of observation time. This was the first UFO scientific field study, able to monitor the phenomena in real-time, enabling Rutledge to calculate the objects' actual speed, course, position, distance, and size.
Observation of the unclouded night sky often revealed "pseudostars" - stationary lights camouflaged by familiar constellations. Some objects appeared to mimic the appearance of known aircraft; others violated the laws of physics. The most startling discovery was that on at least 32 recorded occasions, the movement of the lights synchronized with actions of the observers. They appeared to respond to a light being switched on and off, and to verbal or radio messages. The final results of this project were documented in the 1981 book, Project Identification: The first Scientific Study of UFO Phenomena.
Dr. Harley Rutledge was born January 10, 1926, in Omaha Nebraska, and left his physical body on June 5. 2006, at the age of 80 years, in Cape Girardeau Missouri. My autographed copy of Project Identification, with a personal note dated July 12. 1982, has a special place in my library, and Dr. Harley Rutledge, a friend who contributed significantly to who and what I am, holds a special place in my memory, and in my heart.
In the next installment of this series, I intend to continue connecting the dots related to the evolution of Transcendental Physics and TDVP, resulting from consciousness-expanding experiences and encounters with the people of many lives, past, present, and future.