Seeing Past The Edge*
An Original Work of Non-fiction
By: David G. Yurth Copyright 1997
All Rights Reserved
Looking For Simple, Elegant Solutions
The Myth of Upper Limits
Criticality At All Scales
Thus far, we have examined the behavior of self-organizing systems in the middle ground – those which we can observe and measure directly. Do the same rules apply to the macrocosm, to the Galaxy and the rest of the Cosmos? Do they apply as well to the behaviors of the primary systems operating in the microcosm? If our data is to be believed, and if we can avoid taking too great a leap of imagination, perhaps we can demonstrate that the rules intrinsic to the behavior of self-organizing systems operate at all scales with equal facility.
The Milky Way Galaxy is, in the most real sense, a self-organizing system. The shape of the star system and its intrinsic, observable behaviors demonstrate all the attributes associated with such a system.133 At the macrocosmic level, however, we have to ask some difficult questions. How is it, if the speed of light is the upper limit at which information can be conveyed across the physical universe, that stellar bodies separated by 100 million light years exert a real-time, measurable, instantaneous effect on each other?
By definition, all self-organizing systems operate in compliance with the principles of quantum mechanics referred to in Bell’s Theorem and Gisin’s experimental work, known as “Simultaneity: Non-local effects at a distance”.134 This is a scientific expression which simply means that in quantum systems, what happens in one locale has a measurable, instantaneous effect on every other component of the system, regardless of the distance which separates the components from each other. It happens in our sand pile and in all the mid-sized self-organizing systems we know anything about. Is the Milky Way Galaxy any different?
Let us digress for a moment to reset the context for this discussion. J.S. Bell formulated a theorem which has come to be known as Bell’s Theorem.135 In simple terms, Bell’s theorem predicted two fundamental behaviors of quantum systems which have vexed theoretical physicists for more than thirty years. First, he predicted that one day, an experiment would be devised which would demonstrate that the process and means of observation exert a measurable effect on that which is being observed. If proven correct, Bell’s notion would mean that the fundamental underpinnings of the scientific method are flawed by design. This principle, which is central to quantum theory, lies at the heart of the issues Albert Einstein could not reconcile before his death.
The scientific method rests on a pillar called “detached observation,” which requires that scientists observe the phenomena which characterize the world without in any meaningful way disturbing the process. Bell reasoned that if it could be shown that the simple act of observation exerts a demonstrable influence on the that which is being observed, everything about the way we conduct scientific evaluation would have to be fundamentally altered.
Second, Bell predicted that because we live in a quantum system, information originating in one part of the system is conveyed instantaneously to every other part of the system, without regard to time or distance. One of the founding fathers of quantum physics, Neils Bohr, agreed with him136. Again, this flies in the face of one of the fundamental pillars of modern science. This prediction, always thought to be nothing more than a speculation which would never be provable, suggests that the speed of light is not, as the Second Postulate of Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity claims, the upper limit at which information can be exchanged in our space-time continuum. Currently held notions regarding the absolute inviolability of this notion are so deeply embedded in the collective psyche of the scientific community that any direct challenge to its validity elicits the most vigorous resistance. Nothing, it is said, absolutely nothing in the Cosmos can travel faster than the speed of light.137
The Aspect Experiments
In 1991, a group of scientists led by Dr. Alain Aspect at the University of Paris, France, conducted a series of experiments which turned the scientific world on its ear. Aspect proved that the act of observation does, indeed, exert a demonstrable effect on the behavior of the material world.138 His famous dual slit experiment with electrons demonstrated that in the moment a measurement is taken, the conscious choice of the observer (to measure the electron as a quantum of energy with waveform attributes or as a distinct particle with measurable mass) determines which attribute each single electron will exhibit at the moment of detection. The ripple effect of this astounding discovery has still yet to be fully absorbed by the scientific community a full ten years later.
Much time, energy and talent have been expended by scientists around the world to disprove Aspect’s results. Since no one has yet succeeded in discrediting either Dr. Aspect himself, his methodology nor the results produced by his demonstrations, the current line of thinking in the scientific establishment is that this is simply an isolated case which cannot be generalized to other aspects of the material world beyond the microcosm.
Unfortunately, the lid to this Pandora’s box has already been fully opened. Other scientists in other disciplines at laboratories all over the world are finding and reporting similar results in a broad variety of impeccably documented experiments. The most fundamental tenet of the ancient book of Hindu verses known as the Vedas has now been unarguably demonstrated. The act of observation and the means of observation cannot be separated from that which is being observed.139
The Wheeler Experiments
This aspect of the nature of things does not apply just to the world of the microcosm. Dr. Archibald Wheeler, one of the scions of applied and theoretical physics and winner of the Nobel Prize in Astrophysics, published the results of an experiment which should have been heralded on the front page of every newspaper in the world. Few outside the scientific community have ever heard of it and fewer still have grasped its fundamental importance.
In a carefully devised experiment, Dr. Wheeler set up a telescopic device to measure the light emitted by star clusters estimated to be 12-15 billion light years away. Until the deployment of the Hubble Space Telescope, this distance was believed by proponents of the now largely discounted Big Bang theory to be the outer limit of the Universe140. Today, after the introduction of the Hubble Telescope, it is becoming increasingly clear that there is probably no outer limit to the Universe, which appears to be expanding at an accelerating rate.
When a star emits light, it does so in a way which can be described as omni- directional or spherical. Equal amounts of light energy are propagated in every direction with equal intensity. At a distance of 12 billion light years, what is detected by the observing device on Earth often consists of single photons. This is significant because the state of the art of our existing technology has not yet produced devices which can propagate single photons, the stuff of which light is comprised, one at a time.
So, the measurement of photon traffic from far distant stars gives us an opportunity to make observations which are not yet possible by any other means. It is paradoxical that observation of the largest of all systems provides us with the means to observe the behavior of the smallest known component of discrete information, the photon. In this instance, we witness again the role of complementarity at work in the Cosmos.
While Dr. Wheeler was conducting his experiments in observation, he introduced a variable means of interpreting the data provided by his telescopic device. The objective of the exercise was to discover whether photons emitted by far distant sources travel directly toward the earth in a straight line or whether, as predicted by Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity, space-time is curved by gravitational forces which bend light in a great arching curve, which eventually travels back to its point of origin141.
Wheeler had reason to believe that the photon detection devices he used made it possible for him to distinguish between photons which had traveled in a straight line and those which had arrived at his detector via a curvilinear route. As he was making his observations, a startling thing happened. He discovered that in the moment he elected to measure a photon as having traveled a linear course, it demonstrated linearity in its data set. But when he elected to measure the photon as if it had traveled a steeply curved path from the point of origin, it demonstrated that set of attributes instead.
He realized immediately that something spectacular was occurring which defied conventional scientific wisdom. A single photon cannot have traveled two separate routes simultaneously – according to conventional wisdom, each photon has to have traveled either one route or the other. Nevertheless, the simple act of observing appears to have dictated the behavior of each photon as it was detected.142 Again, no one published these results on the 10:00 o’clock news.
As with Dr. Aspect’s results, the scientific community has exhibited all the familiar symptoms of resistance to accepting a result which challenges the fundament of the conventional scientific model. Our cause has not been made easier by the fact that a whole generation of New Age pundits has attributed meaning to his experimental results which are quite irrational. Nevertheless, this result tells us something that is important.
The long-held notion, propounded by Albert Einstein and generally accepted by the scientific community of the West, that the speed of light is absolute and everywhere constant, can no longer be given credence. We can no longer rely on any model which is based on this assumption.
Another result of Wheeler’s work is even more difficult to accommodate in the framework of the Standard Model. Even though the photons he detected were emitted 12-15 billion years ago, his current choices exerted a demonstrable effect on the data set originally incorporated into the attributes of each photon he measured, as he measured it. The ability to exert a teleological effect, that is, an effect which bridges the time domain, by exercising conscious choice, holds particularly significant meaning for us.
C.E.R.N. Non-Locality Experiments
In 1996, Dr. Nicolas Gisin and his colleagues at Geneva’s CERN linear particle accelerator facility made another incredible breakthrough related to Bell’s Theorem and its predictions. Bell’s predictions regarding non-local effects at a distance in a quantum system had never been verifiable because the physical devices needed to measure the instantaneous occurrence of two identical events at a distance had not yet been developed. But in 1996, Dr. Gisin and his colleagues performed an experiment which has earth shaking implications.143
In Switzerland, at the CERN Linear Accelerator Laboratories, a team of world class scientists succeeded in separating the twin particles of a positron-electron pair by sending them off in two opposite directions through more than 30 kilometers of fiber optic cable. As one of the particles was exposed to an electromagnetic field which altered its spin polarity, the second particle instantaneously accommodated this alteration by modifying its own spin polarity to compensate, in the same manner as it would have if the pair had not been separated.
After verifying this experiment a number of times, the team published a report which made the observation that the information which was shared between the two particles could not have been transmitted by light because the velocity of the information exchange occurred at least one order of magnitude (ten times) faster than the speed of light. They further suggested that the information must have been conveyed by a mechanism which is not known to science or accommodated by our current model of quantum mechanics. They have called their result “Simultaneity – Non-Local Effects at a Distance.” This phenomenon is a key ingredient in the new model of the Universe we are attempting to build. Another of the pillars of the scientific method currently in use is invalidated by this experiment. It proves that Bell was quite correct in his predictions – simultaneity does, indeed, operate at all scales of the physical world in which we live. Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity insists that the speed of light constitutes the upper limit for the rate of information transfer everywhere in the Universe, under all conditions. We now have reason to believe that this notion is quite mistaken. Accordingly, we are compelled to find a way to describe the mechanism which supports Gisin’s demonstration of non-local effects at a distance. If light is not the carrier of such information, what is?
Hodowanec’s Gravimetric Sensor Effect
Scientist Greg Hodowanec made a startling discovery about a critical aspect of this otherwise unexplained phenomenon.144 In his laboratory he had an electronic scale, a device used for measuring the mass of various substances, much like the electronic scales which are sold by dozens of manufacturers in North America. He noticed a peculiar thing about this particular device – before he could use it, he had to re-calibrate it to zero every morning and afternoon. Since it was an older device which did not have a self-calibrating circuit in its electronic architecture, he began to wonder why its calibration fluctuated as much as 10% on some days and at least 2%-3% twice every day. This conundrum is particularly applicable to our discussion because it compelled him to re-examine another of the bed rock fundaments of the current model.
It has been long held, since the publication of the formulas describing gravitational force developed by Einstein, Podolski and Rosen,145, that gravitational force is constant in any locale, except as that locale is acted upon by the gravitational force of bodies outside the locale, at some measurable distance.
The force of gravity is said to vary as an inverse proportion of the square of the distance separating the two bodies. Gravitational force is also claimed to operate as a fundamental manifestation of mass density – the greater the mass of any object, the greater its gravitational constant is supposed to be. The
Einstein-Podolski-Rosen (EPR) formulation describing gravitational forces is one of the bedrocks of the current scientific model.
Unfortunately, at the time Hodowanec was puzzling over the behavior of his scale, no one had developed a means by which to verify some of the basic assumptions associated with what has come to be generally accepted as the Law of Gravitational Force, as described by EPR. If the EPR formulations were to be taken at face value, Hodowanec reasoned he should be able to explain the fluctuations in the calibration of his electronic scale by charting the path of the nearest heavenly body known to exert a measurable gravitational effect on the Earth – the moon.
Try as he might, Hodowanec could not find a correlation between the cycles or location of the moon and the variations in the calibration of his device. After verifying that the electronic components used to construct the device were themselves sound and therefore not the source of oscillation in the system, he began to collect data from a wide variety of news sources and by measuring the fluctuations in the unaltered scale itself over a period of several years.
As luck would have it, on one particular morning, his recording device [a paper roll and pen device similar to a seismograph data recorder] began to oscillate wildly back and forth. He took note of the precise time at which this fluctuation was measured and wrote it by hand on the paper roll. The next morning, the NOAA reported the occurrence of a major solar flare, larger than any which had been observed before. The precise time given for the NOAA’s recording of the event was 8 minutes 33 seconds later than the time shown on Hodowanec’s paper recorder roll.146
In a series of subsequent experiments conducted over a period of more than
30 years, Hodowanec and a number of his colleagues, along with several Russian scientific teams, have developed gravimetric sensor devices which are both highly directional and extremely sensitive to the fluctuations in the gravitational force exerted by heavenly bodies147. His devices and techniques were simultaneously replicated by two teams of Russian scientists working under contract to the Russian Academy of Sciences. Neither knew of the work of the other until the summer of 1998, when the results of both sets of data were disclosed at the International Symposium of the New Energy Society held at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City.148 The results reported by these independent teams of researchers demonstrates that information conveyed in the macrocosm operates in compliance with Bell’s Theorem.
By virtue of a means not then understood, it was possible for Hodowanec and the Russian scientists to observe both the time and magnitude of the solar flare a full eight and a half minutes before the photons carrying the information arrived at the Earth. The magnitude of the catastrophic event represented by the solar flare did not operate within the context of gravitational force alone – something intrinsic to the structure of space-time in our dimension was shown to be operating in ways which are simply unexplainable by the conventional model.149
The importance of this information, coupled with the fundamental rules governing the operation of self-organizing systems, makes several things inescapably clear. First, notwithstanding the importance of Einstein’s contributions to our ability to understand the way the world works, he was mistaken in several important regards. This does not mean he was wrong – he was not named the Man of the Century for nothing. What it does mean, however, is that we now have access to information that he did not possess.
This in turn requires us to fundamentally re-assess our notions about how the world works.150 If we are to succeed at building a model which can be relied on to describe how nature works from top to bottom and everywhere in between, we are compelled to step away from notions we know to be inadequate, incomplete or incorrect.
This means that we are forced to step outside the box of conformity. We are compelled to re-examine the fundamental underpinnings which support the scientific method and re-engineer the Standard Model to comport with what we have observed and experimentally verified. We are now equipped with sufficient information to know that several of the fundamental underpinnings of the Standard Model are in error. Armed with that information, it is time to begin reconstructing the model to accommodate experimentally observed results we cannot ignore or explain.