bl-g asked: I read about that physics discovery a few months ago. What I don't understand is that they say "discovery of a new mathematical object". There's the implication that this object 'exists' strictly in the math, correct? And that there isn't any physical aspect to it? Also, I read the article and fail to understand the importance of this discovery, save that it saves some calculation time. Mind elaborating? Thank you! =)
So firstly, as you might imagine, particle physics on the quantum level is a pretty complex field with intricate mathematical approaches. When they recognized the simplicity of this geometric approach, it was nothing short of jaw-dropping. It’s like figuring out how to build a nuclear fusion reactor by playing with legos.
What’s more, this amplituhedron only comes together as a shape when space-time and probability are discarded as being fundamental. In other words, the shape emerges when no longer attempted to be assembled in terms of time and linearity.
The object itself doesn’t exist strictly in the math, which is even more fascinating. It is not some abstract concept. Rather, it is the very fundamental form of every particle, and the ‘master amplituhedron’ is the infinite form on which all those particles’ smaller amplituhedron shapes are fixed.
They do not, however, exist in terms of space and shape the way we might imagine it. It’s similar to trying to imagine what a tesseract might look like. The dimensionality of it is just not comprehendible in terms of our everyday understanding regarding reality and physicality.
Everything else like space and time and probability arise as a ramification of these objects and their geometry, yet the objects themselves do not change. It is because we have restricted our perception to time and space that this was not apparent.
Einstein often said that “God does not play dice with the universe.” Einstein preferred elegance and simplicity over randomness and weirdness. These strange quantum jewels are the elegance and simplicity emerging from a field that has been, and still is, incredibly weird.
Another big outcome of this theory is that it may lead to a unification of quantum physics (subatomic scale) and newtonian physics (large scale). The biggest problem where the two diverge is on gravity. While gravity is obviously a huge part of physics on the human to galactic scales, it has been meaningless on a quantum scale. Only when black holes, which condense a sun’s worth of mass into the size of a pea, has made gravity relevant to the quantum scale.
Reality proves itself. Spirituality is nothing more than coming to terms with reality. Science is not separate from this endeavor and the more we learn, the more beautiful and solid these truths are being revealed as.
When science and spirituality are coinciding, for example on the notion that time is not an inherent part of existence, then we must ask ourselves why we continue to assume it is. Certainly time-based thinking is useful but the inability to put it down when it needn’t be used is a major form of confusion.
Even the idea of birth and death, with nothing before and nothing after, is meaningless. We have always existed, changlessly and eternally and as One.
PS. I have physics this AM and my professor is a particle physicist from CERN. I’ll ask his thoughts on this matter after class and report back.