The following is something I blogged awhile back while feeling in a philosophical mood. I have yet to post a blog on this site, so I figured, why not post a copy over here? At the least, it could inspire some intriguing thought (I hope).
it's the start of the Spring semester here at USF. Classes are still a
little slow thus far, hence the perfect time to pick up on a topic I've
thought about many times at various points throughout my life!
As human beings, we really only
understand the concept of 'dimensions' as a set of spacial coordinates
along three axes, x, y, z, or length, width, and depth. Extra dimensions
may sound like some far-fetched sci-fi concept, but to think of it in a
serious manner it may be necessary to suspend the simple idea of
spacial dimensions (as limited to 3-D) and think outside the box a
little. In fact, the works of many astrophysicists (notably Einstein)
show support for the notion that space-time rests on a fabric; more or
less, a planar surface of some sort.
Gravity is one reality that helps
illustrate the reason behind this idea. If indeed space-time does rest
on a fabric, the mass of an object in space will create an indention in
the fabric. Objects will be drawn into the depression of the fabric.
Think of it as standing in the center of a trampoline. Any weight will
obviously cause the surface to sink lower in the center, creating a
downward slope from the edge of the surface inward. Drop a ball on the
edge and it will roll to the center. Many scientists believe this is in
fact how gravity works.
This illustration of space-time
expands the concept of 'dimensions' beyond simple points of x, y, and z.
It suggests that there is another plane, an invisible one. X, y, and z
(space) is two planes in itself, vertical, and horizontal. Each plane
consists of two axes, with one shared between them. For this reason,
spacial dimensions are limited to 3D, as each added plane will share
multiple axes in common, bringing no new dimensions to the table.
However, time is not space, space is not time. Surely they share a very
deep connection though, as they are meshed together in the concept
'space-time'. But what if they exist on different layers of the same
thing? Perhaps these multiple layers are the key to bypassing the
paradox of 4 or more dimensions, and the key unlocking the door to the
concept of space-time. With the extraction of layers, space is now 3 of
our dimensions, and time is at least 2...remember a plane consists of
two dimensions. Thus the grand scheme of space-time in all its glory,
consists of at least 5 dimensions.
The sudden departure from this last
idea may leave about some confusion, but I wanted to touch up on another
popular topic regarding space-time, and time travel. I bring this about
now because of the belief that space time in 5 dimensions will offer
some rebuttal to popular beliefs about time travel, particularly the
paradoxical ones. To start with a very simple one, the Grandfather
Paradox presents the notion that going back in time and killing your
father, grandfather, etc. will prevent you from ever being born.
Consequently you'd never be born, and you'd never kill them. However,
they'd again be alive and you'd still be born. From there the
idea would run about creating a tangled, unexplainable mess...that's a
paradox for you. The main idea of this paradox is rather simple though.
It all suggests that time is one-dimensional. However, with the evidence
supporting two-dimensional time, this paradox is easily countered.
Suppose we have all been
born into this time-line which moves forward at a natural, constant
rate. It is the starting point, the hub for all other possibilities. If
time travel where possible, and we were to go back in time and take any
measure that may prevent ourselves from ever getting there in the first
place, two dimensional time may very well allow it. See, time in our
universe may only move forward and backwards (one dimension), but going
back in time places one in a new realm of possibilities, perhaps even
offset from the time from which we came...Suppose time grows like the
trunk of a tree, and each branch grows forth from another possibility
that could have been made in our lives. Maybe it an alternate
reality it did happen...maybe there is an alternate reality for every
possible outcome. According to Zeno's Paradox, space is infinitely
divisible. Thus, any skew from forward and backward in the time-line
would cause an altered reality, even those infinitely small. The idea of
a multiverse in this case would allow for an infinite number of
universes. Thus, the grandfather, father, or whatever would be dead in
one realm, but still alive in another. Killing a person could never be a
multiversal absolute, only a universal one.
in now way a Calvinist, I'm not even a firm believer in religion for
that matter, but the multiverse theory does allow for the concepts of
freewill and predetermined outcome to exist in harmony. If there is a
universe for every possibility, there are an infinite number of
universes as there are an infinite number of possibilities. Suppose we
don't write history, we don't create our own path at all, we only set
out on the paths paved before us. This may not sound like freewill at
all, but where we turn at each fork in the road is a personal choice and
will affect our travel options later in life. All in all, the end
result is the same, only the concept changes.
keep this updated if I figure a better way to explain some of my ideas.
Thank you to everyone who read. :) If you have questions, comment. I'll
do my best to answer them.