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Witnessing the past via a live telecast! Monday, Oct 8 2007
Brains and Branes Saturday, Jun 2 2007
Are our brains sophisticated enough to understand branes?
For those brains wondering as to what branes are, well they are a speculation of the string theory (the theory that is expected to describe everything physical about our universe!! well again its another interesting fact to note that the string theory which was expected to describe our universe has now ended up speculating multiple co existing universes like ours!!!) Branes are membranes that exist in higher dimensions of space (9? 10?). Imagine a sheet of paper that can move about in all 9-10 spatial dimensions. Well, yes, string theory requires that the universe have many more spatial dimensions for it to explain everything about the universe, sorry multiverse!!
Coming back to the brains, are our brains well equipped to understand the functioning of this universe?? Well, that is not the question here.
The real question is an even more fundamental one.
The mental picture of the universe created in our brain with the help of our sense organs, does it correspond to reality?
In other words, is the universe we see the same as the universe we live in. Are we getting an incomplete partial picture based on the capabilities of our sense organs?? Or is it just a mere mapping of the universe into our brains and it has nothing do with the real picture at all??
Consider the example of what we see through our eyes. Our eyes recognize light rays that enter it and send the information to the brain, which then maps it to our visual information in the visual cortex.
The question here is, do our eyes see everything?
Answer is an obvious ‘No’. Our eyes can identify only a part of the electromagnetic spectrum i.e. the light whose wavelength is between 400 to 800 nanometres. We DO NOT SEE light that falls below or above this so-called ‘visible range’!! In other words we are blind outside the so called visible range.
Of course, yes, we have developed instruments, which can identify light outside the ‘visible range’. For instance radio telescopes, X-ray telescopes, Infrared goggles etc.
But when we see the images from these instruments, we map the contours to some color that falls in the visible range!!!!! In other words, we can never see how that real world looks like!!! For instance, if we assume that our eyes were capable of also seeing light waves between 1000-1500 nanometers, how would it look like???????
Now being convinced that we DON’T SEE EVERYTHING, let us discuss about whether at least what we see really corresponds to reality or not!!
We see a red rose. We identify its color as red. Now what is this red? Is the rose really red, or is it just a visual interpretation given to it by our brain??? Well, first lets talk about primary colors: red, green and blue. We call them primary colors !! Why?? Because the cones (cells that identify colors) in our eyes identify only these three colors (to be more precise, only these three wavelengths!) Any other color we perceive is a combination of two or more of these colors.
In other words, primary colors are primary ONLY for human eyes. Not necessarily for every other species on this planet!! So even what we are able to see is just a mapping done based on the light information received by our eyes. Then what does the world really look like? Or does it have something called real look at all??
Probably any audio/video or other information that we receive is ‘perceived depending on the ability of our sense organs’ and this perceived information ‘mapped by the brain’s imagination’.
If this is the case, then what about the scientific theories, facts etc that we build based on our observations of this universe?? Do they correspond to reality atleast?? Well as long as the observation maps the expectations, we can say yes. But we cannot say that it is the only way universe is working. While we might have observed that 2+2=4, we cannot say ONLY 2+2=4 and nothing else is 4. Probably we might have derived based on our observations that 2+2=4, where as universe itself might be functioning as per 3+1=4. We will never know it because the end result is the same aka 4!!!
This is something similar to what Einstein had to say about theories. It is like we are given a wristwatch that shows time accurately and then we are asked to find out how the watch actually works and we have to do that without opening the watch !!
Now, we might come up with an explanation as to how the watch is working and it may perfectly fit the observation. Somebody else might come up with another explanation and even that might fit the observation!! But what is the real mechanism based on which the watch is working?? Based on our earlier discussion on reality, here we are not even sure that we are observing everything about the watch, let alone explain how it works!
Oh my god, so isn’t there any thing called reality at all??
Well, I think there is. The quantum entanglement! Particles sharing information in spite of being physically light-years apart!! The physical universe that we see may not be a direct mapping between reality and observation. We continuously try to refine and redefine our understanding, but as I showed earlier we can never be sure that it is the reality, because there is nothing called reality in the physical universe we observe!! It is only a interpretation of our brain of the information it receives from our sensory organs which are again limited by the capabilities of their observation!
The reality lies in the universe that we feel. Probably that is the reason why ancient Indian seers (scientists of those days) attempted to observe the reality not by opening their eyes, but by closing them and investigating inwards, where in the real truth lies!! Observing from within does not have any limitations imposed by the sense organs, and that is simply because when we observe reality there are no limitations for that observation.
Speed of light in Rigveda Monday, May 28 2007
ancient and angula and bukka and dhanu and dve and dwe and gavyuti and gurudev and hitxp and India and kala and karnataka and kshana and light and likhya and Mahabharat and Mahabharata and mahabharatha and muhurta and muhurtha and nimesa and nimisha and nimisharda and nimishardha and paurusa and rigveda and sanskrit and sayana and Science and speed and surya and time and vedas and vedic and vijayanagar and vishnu purana and vitasti and yava and yavodara and yojana and yojanas and yuka 5:05 pm