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Critique of Intelligent Design

Evolution vs. Creationism

The Art of ID Stuntmen

Faith vs Reason

Anthropic Principle

Autopsy of the Bible code

Science and Religion

Historical Notes


Serious Notions with a Smile


Letter Serial Correlation

Mark Perakh's Web Site


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Title Author Date
Two questions Perakh, Mark Feb 09, 2006
Ben Darfler wrote:

"1) In the section on GTR you mention that you need an independant frame of reference to find out if 15bil yrs can equal 6 days. Is it possible that if we posit a god point of view (for the sake of argument) which would be
external to our universe that we would then satisfy the need for an independant frame of reference? Granted we would probably have no way of knowing what the actual relative time dilation is but it seems that it might at least be plausable. I know there are many arguments against the existance of such a god or that pov but I'm curious how the physics would work if it were to exist."

To my mind, however such an abstractly interesting hypothetical scenario is considered, it has no meaning within the framework of physics. Physics does not deal with any objects that cannot be observed and potentially measured.
Furthermore, the concept of a "frame of reference" in physics implies a physical body, while your scenario suggests a frame of reference ("god") which is anything but a physical body, so it cannot be subjected to a study by means of scientific methods employed in physics. It does not mean you are forbidden to contemplate your scenario, but regardless of how ingeniously you approach it, it will be not part of physics. In philosophy and/or theology any scenario may be discussed but such as the one you suggest is simply beyond physics.

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Title Author Date
Two questions Perakh, Mark Feb 09, 2006
Darfler further wrote: "2) Later when talking about frames of reference at the speed of light you mention that no physical body can move at the speed of light. However, any theist would say that god has no physical body (granted, for Schroeder's STR example you have to assume he does but lets ignore that contradiction). It then seems that this is the crux of your argument that no such frame of reference can exist (correct me if I'm wrong). However, I was wondering what could be said of the frame of reference of a massless being (you could think of a massless particle if its easier) traveling at the speed of light. Could we say that time stops for god (or photons)? Or would photons still move at the speed of light in a frame of reference which was itself moving at the speed of light. If time stops then wouldn't there be some credability left in Schroder's argument?"

Regarding the credibility of Schroeder's argument, there is none. His shema is absurd unless you abandon physics as it has been accepted in the community of scientists. One of the crucial points of STR is that no
physical body having a rest mass can move with a speed of light. This concept is extremely firmly established. Photons are a single actually known physical object having no rest mass, and they always move with a speed of
light, regardless of in which frame of reference their behavior is discussed. Regarding your question of whether we can say that time stops for photons, of course one can say so if one wishes, but such an expression has no definite meaning simply because there is no frame of reference attached to photons and time only has meaning in connection with the concept of a frame of reference (in different frames of reference time flows differently). You can't say anything meaningful about time flow in a non-existing frame of reference.
There also is a more general comment regarding Schroeder's idea, which I omitted in my critique of Schroeder: the very concept of time slowing down, as more of mass appears in the universe, is preposterous, because, as per
GTR, energy is also a source of gravity as well as is mass. Emergence of more mass did not cause the effect of increasing gravity, as the pure energy generated as much of gravity as the emerging mass.


Mark Perakh
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Title Author Date
Two questions C, Ben Jan 17, 2009

A few thoughts on your article: Upon reading the section of your critique of Schroeder's SOG which talks about needing an absolute time
reference to define the slowing of time, I immediately thought of the same response as Ben above. In fact it makes sense to me that the absolute time reference, if it exists, can only beliong to an entity independent of the
Universe (and therefore independent of all time dilations within the Universe). I guess if you are willing to take the leap of faith that there
is a God, you must assume God is independent of this Universe and your need for an absolute reference frame can be satisfied (although obviously not proven).

Also you state that "Physics does not deal with any objects that cannot be observed and potentially measured" and therefore I am not ". . .forbidden to contemplate (my) scenario, but regardless of how ingeniously (I) approach it, it will be not part of physics." Right Mark, I would agree, but I would also never claim that I (or anyone for that matter) could use physics to describe an entity independent of the physical
universe. This just seems like common sense to me. God believers would never try to apply a tool that is used to define and describe the physical universe to define and describe an entity they believe to be independent of
the physical universe, it would make no sense to do so. I think Schroeder's attempts to reoncile physics and the Bible story are interesting, but ultimately as you (and probably Schroeder) have realized, at some point one must leave the realm of what can be described by math and physics in order to hold a belief in God, if you believe in Him you also admit that He has designed the deal that way. Ultimately belief in God, by his token, is going to require some element of faith. He has chosen to maintain free will throughout, regardless of how many PhDs you have.

Lastly, regarding energy and mass both generating gravity alike, this is the first time I have heard this concept and I could not find any literature on it. I have studied that fact that they are interchangable and both are affected by gravity, but I have never seen anything to make me think they create gravitational fields alike. Please enlighten me . . .

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Title Author Date
Two questions Perakh, Mark Jan 17, 2009
Dear Ben C:

I think your approach is principally different from that of Schroeder. If I understand you correctly, your approach is based on the notion of a God who is beyond nature, not restrained by the laws of nature, so is able to maintain something that can be referred to as "absolute time," thus providing a reason for Schroeder's idea. In fact Schroeder's approach is different: he attempts to reconcile the biblical story with the facts of science by asserting that the biblical story can be explained based on facts of science, not by assuming that the explanation requires going beyond the laws of nature.

Let us briefly discuss both approaches. Start with Schroeder's. His argument is fallacious because it contradicts the same general theory of relativity which he suggests as the basis for his argument. In GTR there is no absolute time, which is required for Schroeder's schema to work. Moreover, his concept is intrinsically false because, according to GTR, energy generates gravity as well as the mass does (more about it below).

Now turn to your argument. GAIN, This is not Schroeder’s idea at all – he wants to justify the biblical story by "showing" that it can be explained without breaking the laws of physics, but based on the laws of physics.

Now look at your suggestion per se, regardless of how it relates to Schroeder's idea. You may imagine anything you want, including a god capable of maintaining absolute time. In the famous example, we can imagine that there is a tea pot orbiting Mars. Nobody can forbid you to believe that such a tea pot exists, and there is no way to disprove your belief. But it has nothing to do with science. The hypothesis of god is based not on empirical evidence but, at best, on philosophical arguments. Can I assert that there is no god? No, I can't. Likewise I can't prove that there is no tea pot orbiting Mars, but, as per Occam's razor, there is no reason to assume such a tea pot. Many people assert that God reveals himself to them. I can't argue against their faith, and likewise I can't argue against a patient of an asylum who asserts that he is the incarnation of Napoleon. He is confident that he is Napoleon, and that this is a fact beyond doubt, but I can't share his conviction because I have not experienced that "revelation" he speaks about.

From whatever standpoint we view Schroeder's idea, it is a sheer fallacy, not to mention that he also displays a depressing incompetence in elementary concepts of physics (like, for example, asserting that masers emit atoms, etc.) which makes any serious debate with him meaningless.

Finally, about energy generating gravity. To learn about this point, just pick any serious course of the general theory of relativity (rather than some popular explanation of it) and upon having studied it more or less seriously, you'll find there this matter discussed. Popular explanations often omit this point.

Best wishes,

Mark Perakh

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