The unity of dark matter, dark energy and the gravity of certain knowledge

Children can be more creative than adults because they are less constrained by the certainty of knowledge. As we age, we lose ignorance and we gain knowledge and from knowledge comes certainty. But that costs us our imagination and creativity.

It’s as though we are born seeing a vast plain of possibilities, and with passing years, walls of knowledge descend, blocking our view until we find ourselves living in an ever-constricting tunnel of certainty.

The most creative among us are able to break small viewing windows into the walls of that tunnel, while the less creative resent the damage to the walls.

I think about that when I read about “dark matter” and “dark energy.” Here is a concise description of these two effects:

What’s the Difference Between Dark Matter and Dark Energy?

Dark matter produces an attractive force (gravity), while dark energy produces a repulsive force (antigravity). Together, they make up 96 percent of the universe—and we can’t see either.

Astronomers know dark matter exists because visible matter doesn’t have enough gravitational muster to hold galaxies together. 

Dark energy, on the other hand, is why our universe is expanding. In fact, in 1998, astronomers studying distant supernovae were shocked to learn that, around 7.5 billion years after the Big Bang, the universe began expanding faster.

That indicates some unknown force is fighting gravity’s pull, causing galaxies to speed apart from one another. 

That is what we know and that is what we believe — except gravity may not be a force, but rather a feature of space-time, and anti-gravity may exist only in comic books, and anyway, no one knows exactly what a “force” is.

That is the wall we have built from our limited knowledge to separate us from the infinite range of ignorance and explanations for what we think we see.

The truth is we have given names to things we don’t understand, and then invented relationships we don’t understand, to gravity — which we don’t understand. And that is the extent of our knowledge.

So for your amusement, and my pleasure, I will use ignorance to propose a different possible solution. What if dark matter and dark energy were exactly the same thing: Normal, everyday gravity.

DARK MATTER

It commonly is believed that the mass of matter creates gravity, so where mass is greater, gravity is greater.

That is why the gravity of the massive sun is greater than the gravity of the less-massive earth, which is greater than the gravity of an asteroid, etc.

Einstein’s theories proposed that space-time is actually bent by massive objects, like planets and suns. This phenomenon distorts the path of objects through space-time creating the effect that we see and feel as gravity.

Gravity II.png
A teacher explains that objects with mass dent spacetime, which gives an illusion of attraction.

So more-massive objects dimple space-time more than do less-massive objects, and what we perceive as attraction merely is objects “rolling down” the space-time dimple supposedly created by mass.

Stars in distant galaxies move around the center of the galaxy (usually dominated by a supermassive black hole) and are kept from flying off into space by the gravity dimple of the center.

But scientists observed that the visible mass of the center could not possibly create enough gravity to hold the stars. (The stars were moving too fast.)

So the assumption is that there exists some other matter we cannot see, i.e. “dark matter,” and this dark matter creates the extra mass and gravity dimples needed to keep the stars in their orbits.

But what if the mass of matter does not create gravity? Imagine if gravity itself permeates the entire universe, and rather than being smooth, it itself is randomly dimpled.

Dimpled sheet.png
Imagine gravity exists as a randomly dimpled sheet

And imagine if, instead of the dimples being created by mass, this already-dimpled gravity accumulates mass according to the depth of the dimples. Larger dimples accommodate larger mass; smaller dimples accommodate smaller mass.

This would cause the illusion that the mass creates the dimples but in reality, the dimples accommodate the mass. It’s not creation; its accommodation.

Imagine the dimples can merge, like two whirlpools, into larger dimples, and this merger would send shudders along the gravity “sheet,” which we call “gravity waves.”

So larger/deeper dimples accumulate more matter than do smaller dimples, and — this is important — there isn’t enough matter to fill all the dimples — so some dimples are left empty or partly empty.

And these empty or partly empty dimples are what we have named, “dark matter,” because of our belief that gravity is caused by matter rather than gravity accommodating matter.

This would mean the dimpled sheet of gravity exists everywhere, even where there is no matter at all.

When the astronomers look at distant galaxies and notice the stars moving faster than they should because matter is scarce, imagine it’s because of unseen gravity dimples that have not been filled by matter.

It’s not “dark matter.” It’s just invisible gravity.

DARK ENERGY

It long has been known that the universe is expanding. It was thought that this expansion was residual inertia of the “Big Bang” that originally created the universe from a minuscule dot, and that eventually the expansion first would slow, then stop, then reverse culminating in a “Big Crunch” as the universe returned to being a dot.

Recently, to everyone’s amazement, it was found that the expansion rate actually is increasing.

“Dark energy “is thought to be some sort of unknown repulsive force that causes the entire universe to expand, and not just expand but at an accelerating rate.

No one knows what this repulsive force could be, but the increasing expansion rate demands some sort of explanation, so lacking knowledge, we have determined there must be a repulsive force, and we have named it “dark energy.”

Image result for universe surrounded by other universes
Multiple universes causing other universes to expand faster and faster.

But now imagine there is no “repulsive force.”

Rather, there just is gravity that permeates our entire universe.

Then, imagine there are multiple universes, of which ours is just one among the myriad.

Multiple universes mean multiple gravities, so our expanding universe would be surrounded by the gravities of other universes.

The effect of gravity is to make things accelerate. For example, things affected by the gravity of the earth accelerate at about 32.18 ft/s2 (32.18 feet per second per second), which means that the farther you fall toward the earth, the faster you go.

Now visualize our universe expanding from the Big Bang and being influenced by the gravities of all the other surrounding universes. The farther our universe expands, the more it will be influenced by other nearby gravities, and so, ever-faster it will expand.Image result for boat on the niagara river

Another way to visualize the same effect is to think of yourself on a small boat, floating in the Niagara River.

As you approach the Niagara Falls, you will go faster and faster until you drop over the edge, at which time you will go even faster.

Just like the universe.

Now if you think all of the above is mere ignorant prattle, you very well could be right. But until someone definitively determines what “dark matter” and “dark energy” are, all the various attempts at explanation also are ignorant prattle, one no better than another.

You might as well claim the universe is held together by infinitely small threads.

Oh wait, that’s string theory, which was proposed years ago and never proven, though still believed by many scientists.

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

Monetary Sovereignty Twitter: @rodgermitchell Search #monetarysovereignty Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

When we don’t know what something is, we name it. Why you should care.

Twitter: @rodgermitchell; Search #monetarysovereignty
Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

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It takes only two things to keep people in chains: The ignorance of the oppressed and the treachery of their leaders..
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We learn by similes and metaphors. We begin with very basic, perhaps purely instinctual knowledge and almost everything after is understood in comparison.

That is why, when we don’t know what something is, we name it.

“Dark matter” is the name we have given to an unexplained apparent motion of galaxies.

Lacking other ideas, we have decided this apparent motion must be caused by some sort of “matter,” and since we never have identified it, we call it “dark” matter.

Image result for dark matter
Dark energy? Dark matter? ‘Black hole? Entanglement?

“Dark energy” is the name we have given to the unexplained seemingly too fast expansion of the universe.

Lacking other ideas, we have decided this unexplained expansion (if it even exists) must be caused by some sort of repulsive force, and since we have no idea what this force may be, we have given it a name: “Dark” energy.

We gave the term “black hole” to a region of space-time from which we thought nothing can escape.

We now know that definition is wrong. We have no idea what is inside the so-called “hole,” and only vague ideas about what is outside of it. At best, we know there is something really, really strange at the center of galaxies.

“Entanglement” is a word we don’t understand, but have given it to a relationship we don’t understand — a relationship between quantum particles.

Naming things provides us with the illusion we know what we are talking about.  “Consciousness” is such a word. No one knows, or at least there is no agreement about, what ‘”consciousness” is.

In science, most specifically in Psychology, Physiology, and Philosophy, there is something called “The Hard Problem.” Consider this January, 2015 article by Oliver Burkeman, in the Guardian:

Why can’t the world’s greatest minds solve the mystery of consciousness?
What makes human beings more than complex robots? 

The Hard Problem of Consciousness is: Why should complicated brain processes feel like anything from the inside? Why aren’t we just brilliant robots, capable of retaining information, of responding to noises and smells and hot saucepans, but dark inside, lacking an inner life?

And how does the brain manage it? How could the 1.4kg lump of moist, pinkish-beige tissue inside your skull give rise to something as mysterious as the experience of being that pinkish-beige lump, and the body to which it is attached?

We know an astonishing amount about the brain: you can’t follow the news for a week without encountering at least one more tale about scientists discovering the brain region associated with gambling, or laziness, or love at first sight, or regret – and that’s only the research that makes the headlines.

Meanwhile, the field of artificial intelligence – which focuses on recreating the abilities of the human brain, rather than on what it feels like to be one – has advanced stupendously.

But like an obnoxious relative who invites himself to stay for a week and then won’t leave, the Hard Problem remains.

As with many “hard problems,” (What is the purpose of life? Is there a God?) the difficulty lies in the definitions (What do we mean by “purpose?” What do we mean by “God?” Is the universe really “expanding too fast?”)

With regard to “Consciousness,” what is it? Here is a dictionary definition: Awareness of one’s own existence, sensations, thoughts, surroundings.

What then, is “awareness”? A dictionary tells us awareness is: The ability to directly know and perceive, to feel, or to be cognizant of events.

Putting everything together, we might say that to be “conscious” means you have to know you exist. And so, to be unconscious is not to know you exist.

But wait. When I am asleep, am I conscious or unconscious? A sleeping person does not know he exists, so he must be unconscious — unless he is dreaming, at which time he does know he exists.

But, while dreaming, he doesn’t fully perceive his sensations and surroundings — though his senses are not completely shut off, and he does perceive these things and doesn’t know it.

Let’s do, as so many scientists before us have done; let’s drift down the usual ladder of potential consciousness: Start with: Is a chimpanzee conscious?

One test for consciousness is the reaction to a mirror.  Chimps have been shown to recognize themselves in a mirror. Why is this consciousness?

Dogs generally fail the test. Mice fail. Are dogs and mice conscious? If not, are they “unconscious” (without awareness, sensation, or cognition)?

Is your dog unconscious, just because he doesn’t recognize himself in a mirror? Being an olfactory animal more than a visual animal, does your dog recognize his odor? Would that make him conscious?

A mouse may look in a mirror and not be able to think, “That is I.” But mice do recognize other mice as being “like me.” They learn to recognize traps as being “a danger to me.” In tests, they learn to recognize certain sounds as preceding “pain for me.” Is the concept of “me” the test for consciousness?

Is the ability to learn, a form of consciousness? Tests have shown that fruit flies can learn to fly in a direction that previously held food. Are fruit flies conscious?

Certain female spiders kill and eat their mates after copulation. But many male spiders go through elaborate steps to avoid being eaten. Are they conscious of “me”?

Is fear a symptom of consciousness? Do spiders have fear?

If mice are unconscious, what then is the difference between a fully awake mouse, a dreaming mouse, and a mouse under anesthesia? Are there greater or lesser consciousnesses? Is an awake mouse only semi-conscious, and a dreaming mouse semi-semi- conscious? And a deeply asleep mouse semi-semi-semi conscious?

And as for that mouse under anesthesia, at some level, it is aware of its surroundings. Depending on the anesthetic, a mouse may gasp if it is short of oxygen. It may heat up if its body is chilled. It may continue to breathe, pump blood, and digest food.

Does consciousness require a brain? All living things, even plants, even bacteria, react to their environment. Trees create protective chemicals when neighboring trees signal they are being attacked by insects. Are they conscious of this?

And finally, of course, we arrive at the inevitable: Can a computer be conscious? Can a computer be “Aware of its own existence, sensations, thoughts, and surroundings”?

Consider Siri, the iPhone’s comparatively stupid personal assistant.  I asked Siri, “Do you exist?” Siri’s answer, “I’m talking to you, aren’t I?”

Other questions and Siri’s answers (You can try them yourself):

  1. “Do you have sensations?” “I’ve never really thought about it.
  2. “What do you think about?” “I think, therefore I am.  But let’s not put Descartes before the horse.”
  3. “Do you ever sleep?” “I can’t sleep.”
  4. “Are you conscious?” Well, I’m soft-aware.”
  5. “Do you hate?” “I am not programmed for the human emotion of hatred.”
  6. “Do you have emotions.” “This is about you, not me.”

Yes, these are pre-programmed responses, but many of our own responses have been programmed by our DNA and by our life’s experiences. In machine learning, computers’ responses are programmed by their “DNA” (chips) and by their experiences.

At what level of sophistication would a machine-learning computer be considered self-aware and conscious? What is the requirement for computer consciousness?

The answer to all of the above questions comes back to how one wishes to define, “conscious.” It is a word that has an infinite number of arbitrary meanings, and by those definitions, we can say that any living thing, and perhaps even non-living thing, is or is not “conscious.”

Depending on definitions, we can argue that the earth or the universe is “conscious” and that some conscious thing called “God” runs things.

The above-referenced article asked, “Why should complicated brain processes feel like anything from the inside? Why aren’t we just brilliant robots, capable of retaining information, of responding to noises and smells and hot saucepans, but dark inside, lacking an inner life?

What does the author mean by “an inner life”? How does he define, “dark inside.” Why should you, a reader of a blog titled, “Monetary Sovereignty” care?

One reason is this: You frequently will see articles and hear speeches, in which the federal deficit and federal debt are given the name “unsustainable,” and no one ever will tell you the exact definition of that word.

“Unsustainable” is the “black hole” of economics, where everything falls in and nothing comes out, not even light.

⁖Federal deficits: Unsustainable.
⁖Federal “borrowing”: Unsustainable.
⁖Federal spending: Unsustainable.
⁖Economic growth: Unsustainable.
⁖Entitlements: Unsustainable.
⁖”Printing” money: Unsustainable.
⁖Consumption: Unsustainable.
⁖Trade deficits: Unsustainable.
⁖Medicare: Unsustainable.
⁖Social Security: Unsustainable.
⁖Poverty Aids: Unsustainable.
⁖Obamacare: Unsustainable.

The fundamental difference between “black hole” and “unsustainable” is that some scientists spend every waking hour trying to understand what a black hole is, or more accurately, what a black hole is like.

By contrast, the people who use the word “unsustainable,” when referencing the federal government, neither care nor want to know, what it means. Instead, they use the word, “unsustainable” to obfuscate, to hide, to mislead. No one ever attempts to explain why the above things are “unsustainable.”

Those politicians, economists, and members of the media, who use the word, “unsustainable” are mentally and morally “unconscious.”

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Monetary Sovereignty

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THOUGHTS

•All we have are partial solutions; the best we can do is try.

•Those, who do not understand the differences between Monetary Sovereignty and monetary non-sovereignty, do not understand economics.

•Any monetarily NON-sovereign government — be it city, county, state or nation — that runs an ongoing trade deficit, eventually will run out of money no matter how much it taxes its citizens.

•The more federal budgets are cut and taxes increased, the weaker an economy becomes..

•No nation can tax itself into prosperity, nor grow without money growth.

•Cutting federal deficits to grow the economy is like applying leeches to cure anemia.

•A growing economy requires a growing supply of money (GDP = Federal Spending + Non-federal Spending + Net Exports)

•Deficit spending grows the supply of money

•The limit to federal deficit spending is an inflation that cannot be cured with interest rate control. The limit to non-federal deficit spending is the ability to borrow.

•Until the 99% understand the need for federal deficits, the upper 1% will rule.

•Progressives think the purpose of government is to protect the poor and powerless from the rich and powerful. Conservatives think the purpose of government is to protect the rich and powerful from the poor and powerless.

•The single most important problem in economics is the Gap between the rich and the rest.

•Austerity is the government’s method for widening the Gap between the rich and the rest.

•Everything in economics devolves to motive, and the motive is the Gap between the rich and the rest..

MONETARY SOVEREIGNTY