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Prometheus98876

Empty Space

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[First of all : I would like to point out that I am not interested if you disagree with my conception of space. I am absolutely convinced that I am correct and I am not interested in debating this issue in this thread. If you do not agree, that is fine, I do not want to hear about it. Second of all : I do not care if anyone wishes to link/share this around, as long as I am attributed as the author).

Space is a concept which is very rarely correctly understand by anybody, including modern physicists. However, the purpose of this essay is not to discuss the confusions of others in relation to this concept, my purpose is to introduce a valid concept of space, clearly educed to its referents in reality. It is also meant as an answer to those that damn any and all concepts of empty space as invalid.

Whether or not there is any "absolute" vacuum ( even in "outer space" ) is according to modern physics debatable and there are many theories as to whether or not any such areas in space exist or not. However it is not really impossible from a metaphysical point of view ( when I say "metaphysically possible" - I mean that from a metaphysical perspective, such is not impossible ).

When one considers a "region of space", they are referring to it in relation to separation between a number of entities. This is what space is : It is a conceptual relationship and the "space" itself has no physical existence as such.

However, the separation, the geometrical relationship does in fact exist. The relationship can also be said to include the presence of absence of intervening objects ( or at least the presence or absence of such objects worthy of consideration in a given context). "Empty" refers to the fact that there are no such objects within that region. This is the so-called "void" of space and in some contexts the "void" may refer to a region of space which is alleged to be literally empty of anything at all. It is not metaphysically impossible for this to be so, it is not impossible for this relationship to exist ( again, whether or not any such regions exist is besides the point of this essay and is a question for physics to answer, not metaphysics).

Let us analyze "space " a bit more and put this another way : Space is a separation between objects. It is a relationship of positions between objects. We say space "contains" one or more objects when there are other objects which exist within the geometrical "boundary" which the bounding objects delimit.

Empty space means that there are no other objects which exist in a position which relates to the objects which are defined as bounding objects in a certain way. By which I mean that there are no other objects which exist according to the relationship of being 'between" objects bound by these objects which we are using to delimit this "space".

This is why it is metaphysically possible to have a "void" in at least one sense and why it is valid to speak of a void in at such a sense: The sense that a void is said to refer to "empty " space, to the fact that no relationships of a certain type exist in relation to the objects bound a space. It is an identification of the fact that a certain relationship does not apply in a given case/context

The void does not "exist qua void” ,it has no physical existence, however it is nonetheless a valid concept and it is appropriate to use it.

Let me make this still more clear : Does the fact which I allege "empty space" refers to itself refer to anything in reality? Yes it does. The fact that "there are no objects within this boundary" means that there are some objects in certain locations. The objects and their positions and other objects we wish and their locations are the ultimate referents we are dealing with here.

Now we relate the position of these "boundary" objects in such a way that we form the concept of a "space" between them. Then we consider any other object and we recognize the fact that these objects have location as well, however that location is not within the "space" bound by the boundary objects. We then call that space" empty space" ( or we just say its "empty") to refer to this fact.

However, some people continue to deny the validity of this concept of space and insist on arguing that “reality is a full plenum, it is filled to the brim with something “ or some such argument. However one does need to invent an aether to do away with the concept of "empty space". It is entirely unjustified and rationally impossible to defend on such grounds.

In fact it is to commit a gross error of its own. It is to assume that “empty space” reifies nothingness, that it is equivalent to claiming that the absence of something is something and that it can be said to be a concept with referents ( a valid concept). However this is false. It is the identification of a relationship, as explained above. It is not the same as saying that the void exists qua concrete entity, it is simply the statement that certain entities exist with a given relationship to each other. It is not the same as giving nothing metaphysical primacy or stature and it is most certainly not a contradiction.

In fact it is to be guilty of yet another error. It is to take the relationship "empty space" , which is an abstraction which refers to objects and their positions and replacing it with some entity which one then refers to as "the aether" However this is in fact a logically unnecessary and ridiculous thing to do and what is more it is to reify the abstract relationship of space, which is the very error aether theory advocates tend to accuse those that believe in “empty space” of!

So in short : It is metaphysically possible that regions of "outer space” ( if “outer space” is to be a valid term, it must refer generically to any region of “space” which we wish ton consider outside of the bounds of the atmosphere of Earth or whichever celestial object one may speak of “outer space” in relation to ) are empty or that they are a void. Provided one recognize that space is relational concept

One need not invent an aether for this purpose. One need not treat it as something subject to curvature ( which is just another way of reifing space and a failure to recognize it as nothing more than a relational concept).

There is no space in philosophy or physics to treat space as anything but what it is. It is time more people ( especially physicists) started doing so.

Edited by Prometheus98876

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You write that you are "not interested if some of the readers may disagree" with you, but whether you are interested or not I honestly have to mention that this is exactly my view regarding space, though I don't have the physical experience of yours.

Every other one I have encountered in my lifetime must have been absurd and rationalistic in real-life terms, be it Kant's "conscious primalist" mysticism or any theological nonsense that regards space a non-physical entity independent of its components.

I certainly shall share it as soon as I face such a pointless discussion again.

Thanks for the well-phrased essay and nice that you can still find your branches of philosophy in which you can still make new things explicit (not impossible, yet pretty tough I'd say).

---Tomer

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What I mean is that I am not interested if someone wishes to express that they disagree with what space is or is not. Or at least that I do not wish to discuss it in this thread. I am a little more interested if someone agrees ;) Also, despite saying "I dont care if you share" it around, I meant "I do not mind". A little bit of a slip of "tongue" there.

Edited by Prometheus98876

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Also, despite saying "I dont care if you share" it around, I meant "I do not mind". A little bit of a slip of "tongue" there.
Huh? Yeah, for sure. I got it from the first moment. I simply mentioned that I might have the intention to actually share it, that's it. Edited by Tomer Ravid

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Huh? Yeah, for sure. I got it from the first moment. I simply mentioned that I might have the intention to share it, that's it.

Oh, I realize that. I was simply pointing out that what I initially said was not quite what I thought that I said. I was not accusing you of misunderstanding me, especially as it seemed fairly obvious that you probably knew what I meant.

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In "Selected Topics in the Philosophy of Science", Dr. Binswanager addresses this topic among many others. In your description you mention "objects" and "entities" refer to empty space as regions essentially devoid of objects or entities.

Would you consider a "gravitational" or "magnetic" field qualifing as an entity, or just merely as an existent?

If a gravitational field is an existent, would it not "fill" the plenum between two objects?

Please take this as an inquiry of clarification, not of contention.

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Yeah he I bet he does, Harriman makes essentially the same points in his lecture on space ( "Physicists Lost in Space" or whatever exactly it is called). However like Binswangers lecture mentioned above, it seems to be one very few here have ever heard ( I have not heard Binswangers one yet).

I am unsure exactly what I would refer to such fields as, especially as physics offers little guidance as to what fields are ( usually approaching them from a mathematical perspective). I do not think such field would "fill the plenum" between objects , though I suppose some of space would be occupied? I am inclined to think that a "field" may be either a relationship where entities act in certain ways or perhaps some sort of exchange of entities. I am really not enough of a physicist to be very sure ( as suggested though, I am not sure that many of them are that sure anyway).

It an interesting question, however it is one that I do not feel I can provide a definite answer to.

Edited by Prometheus98876

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Yeah, it is certainly one problem I fairly often give some thought to. I would hope that if someone was able to provide a better physical explanation for such things , that they might get a Nobel Prize. Though perhaps someone a little more versed in physics can explain why this may not be quite the mystery I ( and some experts like Harriman apparently) seem to think it is.

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[First of all : I would like to point out that I am not interested if you disagree with my conception of space. I am absolutely convinced that I am correct and I am not interested in debating this issue in this thread. If you do not agree, that is fine, I do not want to hear about it. Second of all : I do not care if anyone wishes to link/share this around, as long as I am attributed as the author).

Fortunately, you do not have the privilege of dictating who can reply to what post.

Your conception of space is totally wrong.

"In 1905, Albert Einstein published a paper on a special theory of relativity, in which he proposed that space and time be combined into a single construct known as spacetime. In this theory, the speed of light in a vacuum is the same for all observers—which has the result that two events that appear simultaneous to one particular observer will not be simultaneous to another observer if the observers are moving with respect to one another. Moreover, an observer will measure a moving clock to tick more slowly than one that is stationary with respect to them; and objects are measured to be shortened in the direction that they are moving with respect to the observer.

Over the following ten years Einstein worked on a general theory of relativity, which is a theory of how gravity interacts with spacetime. Instead of viewing gravity as a force field acting in spacetime, Einstein suggested that it modifies the geometric structure of spacetime itself.[19] According to the general theory, time goes more slowly at places with lower gravitational potentials and rays of light bend in the presence of a gravitational field. Scientists have studied the behaviour of binary pulsars, confirming the predictions of Einstein's theories and non-Euclidean geometry is usually used to describe spacetime." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space

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Yes, sadly I cannot stop you making pointess and incorrect comments. I do not care if you think my conception of space is all wrong, or if you provide me with a quote on a subject which I am sure I understand far better than you do ( Einsteins theory of Relativity and what physics claims space is). You are wasting your time, I happen to know I am correct and that your objection is devoid of any valid argument or point.

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Your conception of space is totally wrong.

"In 1905, Albert Einstein published a paper on a special theory of relativity, in which he proposed that space and time be combined into a single construct known as spacetime...

Einstein's theories aren't universally (heh! *snort*) accepted. Take tempo field theory, for instance.I don't know word one about physics at this level, so I can't tell you if this website is plausible or laughable, but it does indicate that there isn't a complete consensus.

Edit: Tempo theory might deserve its own thread, actually. I'd be interested to see a critique (in layman's terms) from anyone who works in the feild (sorry, I couldn't resist).

Edited by FeatherFall

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Any *rational* person knows that when it comes to science, it does not matter what is universally accepted to be true, or what Wiki says.  What counts is the facts which one *understands* and can validate/show to be true.  A lot of Einsteins ideas in this field ( and those derived from them ) can easily be shown to be false / invalid.  As far as alleged proofs for some of the less rational aspects of Relativity ( such as time dilation), all that has been proven is that clocks and whatnot suffer some sort of effect under certain conditions.  It does not for instance prove that time is literally dilating / contracting ( which is nonsense anyway, time is a relational concept, it makes no sense to claim it dilates/contracts).

Edited by Prometheus98876

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Your conception of space is totally wrong.

...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space

Perhaps you should go straight to Einstein's own words rather than stopping at Wikipedia.

In this edition I have added, as a fifth appendix, a presentation of my views on the problem of space in general and on the gradual modifications of our ideas on space resulting from the influence of the relativistic view-point. I wished to show that space-time is not necessarily something to which one can ascribe a separate existence, independently of the actual objects of physical reality. Physical objects are not in space, but these objects are spatially extended. In this way the concept "empty space" loses its meaning.

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See , that is the thing. I already knew for a fact that Einstein himself did not entirely agree with the modern view of Relativity ( which the Wiki article describes ). Another reason why James (WDNG) should not attempt to inform people on a subject they in fact know nothing about. I would not expect James to make an honest and informed attempt to discredit myself or my ideas. Based on past dealings with him, that would be out of quite out of character. At this point, all of my dealings with him involve him making useless objections to my work / comments, apparently out of some personal prejudice.

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" It does not for instance prove that time is literally dilating / contracting ( which is nonsense anyway, time is a relational concept, it makes no sense to claim it dilates/contracts). "

Except that the data shows that it does. Screw the evidence though!

I'll take the fact that you answer my objection to your poorly written paper with hyperbole and ad hom as evidence that it is indefensible.

"apparently out of some personal prejudice. "

Isnt this a bit disingenuous, especially given

http://www.objectivistliving.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=9173&st=0&p=106734&fromsearch=1&#entry106734

and

http://wedontneedgod.wordpress.com/2011/01/25/a-funny-conversation/ ?

Once again, the data trumps the blah blah blah.

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No, you and others simply are mistaken about what the data proves. Screw you and your errors.My comments are neither hyperbole , nor am I guilty of any ad homs. Pointing out that you are acting badly / irrationally and insulting you is not the same thing. If I was attempting to negate your arguments / point by insulting you, maybe that would be an ad hom. However, I have done no such thing.Your links do not prove the point that you were attempting to make. Especially as they do not provide the full context in which I have made recent comments. Even if I was guilty of what you seem to think I am, it does not justify any of your recent comments / objections both here and via other mediums. There has been no rational reason to post any of them and most of the time you have been greviously in error anyway. And what is more : What makes you think I or anyone else cares?Face it : You are wasting your own time and are hopelessy outmatched. Put away the kindling , because you will lose if you continue to try to weild it. Kindly stop wasting time and move on.

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