In the light
Some of the ancient philosophers thought light emerged from the eyes and created the external
reality. According to modern science, light is a so called electromagnetic field. Such a field
obeys certain formal relations and propagates at a finite speed. Electromagnetic fields are intimately
related to the motion of electrical charges.
Since we experience the phenomenon of light everyday, it may be interesting to point out that the formalism
relating these charges and the fields can be expressed in such a way, that the fields vanish from the
analysis. The whole situation is then characterized by the motion of charges. The effect is such that
they 'feel' each others presence with a time delay proportional to the relative distance.
It is however impossible to reverse the process and make the charges vanish from the analysis.
If one wants to question the reality of fields, there is apparently some basis for it.
It is the proportional time delay that makes it very natural to visualize some kind of perturbation
moving between the interacting charges. And from an engineering point of view, this always works.
However it is not absolutely necessary to beleive that the fields exist in external reality.
When we see something, it means our retinas are influenced by some action. But we don't know there is anything
moving to and fro the eyes.
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On the other hand, if we decide to beleive in the real existence of light, there is one peculiar aspect about
it that may be of interest. The time delay experienced between interacting charges, is measured in the reference
frame of the charges. However in the reference frame of the electromagnetic field mediating this interaction
no time passes. That is, from the beginning of the universe (if there ever was one) until present time, no time
at all has passed in a reference frame travelling along a light beam. What does this mean? No one knows.
Most, if not all, efforts of understanding material phenomena have been dealing with sub-light speed phenomena.
Therefore it is conceivable that there are undiscovered truths in connection with the singular case of
exact light speed. One class of such truths could be that the reference frame otherwise used needs to be changed
somehow in order to handle that case.
There doesn't appear to exist any smooth transition region between phenomena below light speed and phenomena at
exact light speed. This might indicate that there is something missing in the scientific conceptual framework.
Something may be hiding in the light, out of reach for contemporary science.
The phenomenon of light is very strictly tied to a 3-dimensional space and a one-dimensional time, and it is very
natural that the scientific world view has evolved close to this 3+1 dimensionality, since it is directly connected to
how we measure things. Everything known about the macroscopic world fits into this 3+1 scheme and it wouldn't work with
any other dimensionality. Most theories aiming to ascribe higher dimensionality to the world than this 3+1-ness therefore
place all the higher dimensional effects in the very small scale. Personally I beleive there are many other options, but
most of them are such that they tend to make you feel that all the solid ground of the existing conceptual framework
Somebody, I think it was Einstein, said something like 'every time has its own truths'. Probably quite true.
This means that radical ideas have to be really good to gain acceptance. This was the case with the theories of the
1920s. I beleive more of this kind of radical shift of ideas will be necessary to get things right. Surprises are to be expected.
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Since time doesn't pass along a light beam, the absorption and emission of light quanta takes place simultaneously
in the reference frame of the light beam even though these events occur in widely separated places. At light speed
the whole of reality is captured in a single instant.
This kind of transgression of time is sometimes ascribed to the God of the dominating religions.
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