PARVA PHILOSOPHIA 4 - My unanswered Letter to Scientific American on Jan 18, 2012 on space and gravity
Dear Scientific American,
Scientists have assessed that the experiment of the “faster than light neutrino” is not reliable because the possibility of a radiation of energy traveling faster than light is absolutely to exclude [ S. A., Dec. 2011, p. 18]. But according to Newton, force of gravity acts upon the earth and planets instantaneously. Indeed, light takes about 8 minutes to radiate from the sun to the earth and such an interval of time (implying an 8 minutes gravity blackout) cannot be obviously conceded to force of gravity, which has held the whole Solar System simultaneously together since its beginning. Therefore, the velocity of light radiation must be inferior to the velocity of the radiation of the force of gravity. Maybe the notion itself of ‘velocity’cannot be applied to a radiation or force that takes place ‘instantaneously’in any given distance.
To solve some difficulties in Newton’s theory of gravity, Einstein thought of a curvilineal universe ‘bent’ in every point by the gravitational forces emanating from differently dense concentrations of energy. This way, force of gravity could be conceived not even as a ‘force’ but simply as a geometrical ‘variation’in the density (or curvature) of space, thus eliminating the difficult idea of an action at a distance in the void.
I would like to point out two difficulties resulting from Einstein’s theory.
1) The supposed curvature of space has been confirmed by one single fact only, i.e. the deflection of starlight passing through the gravitational field of the sun. All subsequent efforts to measure it in the proximity of other objects of our Planetary System have so far failed [Stuart Clark, The Universe, Quercus, London, 2010, p. 71]. This suggests that what is being ‘bent’ by gravitational fields is not space as such but the radiation of energy (the light beam) that is attracted into the gravitational fields of stars of certain (huge) dimensions only, like our sun or others, much bigger.
2) Even admitting as proven by experience the idea that gravity acts upon our earth as a simple ‘variation’ in the density of the fields of energy binding the earth to the sun, we must admit, in my opinion, that such a ‘variation’ must always be instantaneous. It if were to take place at a given speed, like the velocity of light or a lesser one, that would imply the impossible consequence that at the beginning of our Solar System there was an interval of 8 minutes or longer during which the earth was not under the action of gravity.
Very truly yours,
Back to Philosophy, then! “Heigh ho, sing heigh ho, unto the green holly”! The notion of space is a basic notion for our image of the world around us. I have dealt extensively with this notion in the second volume of my theoretical work: Metafisica del soggetto II. “Il concetto dello spazio”, Giuffré Editore, Milano, 2015, pp. 648. In chapters 7, 8 & 9 of this book (pp. 333-537) I discuss analitically and critically Einstein’s notion of a “curved and finite space”. The recent (allegedly definitive) confirmation of the existence of “gravitational waves” supposedly resulting from the clash of two “black holes”, still does not explain the misterious nature of the force of gravity, nor does it demonstrate (in my modest opinion) that space is effectively “bent” and “finite”.
The arguments raised in this Letter of mine, though developed from the standpoint of the common man, may be such – I hope – as to foster non-conformist reflections on the real nature of the world around us.
Paolo Pasqualucci Sunday the 4th of March, 2018