Speed of Light: To Beat or not to Beat - Written in 2008

SPEED OF LIGHT: TO BEAT OR NOT TO BEAT (In Preparation)

 

ABSTRACT:

At the heart of Einstein’s “Special Theory of Relativity” is the notion that the speed of light is the speed limit in the universe and no other radiation or force can go faster. He taught further that this speed of light is constant everywhere in the universe. In contrast, and in contradiction to long-held belief, he argued that when bodies are in motion, time will contract or dilate. Thus, matters that travel at or close to the speed of light will experience ‘time-dilation”. Einstein’s “General Theory of Relativity” postulated that the space around large bodies such as stars that wield enormous fields of gravity will curve and thus light and other radiations will ‘bend’ in response. Gravitational lens effect is widely quoted as a direct evidence of this effect.

I will argue that at least gravity travels faster than light, perhaps even instantaneously across space. At lower speeds, such as light-speed, large bodies will not be able to influence lesser bodies at vast distances commonplace in the universe. Another common observation also hints at faster-than light travel. This is the case with neutrinos that stream out of exploding stars called Supernovae Type 1. For example, neutrinos attributed to the Supernova 1987A (SN 1987A) were detected at least 3 hours before the arrival of light from the same source. As the core collapse is followed by the explosion within a matter of seconds, there is no other explanation of this phenomenon but that neutrinos traveled faster. As light photons are known to have a finite weight, I propose that particles that move faster do so probably by the fact that they are smaller (and lighter). This applies to electromagnetic radiations such as radio waves that go through solid objects, while light is stopped by them. Finally, I propose that the bending of light rays around large bodies indicate that they are also probably slowed down by the pull of gravity. Thus, away from the influence of large bodies, essentially in the vast expanse of empty space that make up most of the universe, light rays themselves might be capable of traveling much faster! And that means the possibility of faster-than-light travel for human beings as well.

INTRODUTION

Many of the ideas proposed by Albert Einstein (1) have been formulated around the special properties of light. The second postulate of his “Special Theory of Relativity” contends that “the velocity of light is constant and will be the same for all observers, independent of their motion relative to the light source”. If one travels at speeds approaching the speed of light, he stated that time “dilates” and one ages slower. Experiments conducted to test this hypothesis involved taking atomic clocks aboard planes on transcontinental flights (2) and comparing with, “twin” clocks kept stationary on earth. These experiments are believed to confirm the time dilation theory.

In his General Theory of Relativity, (3) he stipulated that the “gravity, inertia and acceleration are all associated with the way space and time are related”. This relationship was described as “space-time curvature” and he went on to suggest that the “mass tells space-time how to curve and the curvature of space-time (gravity) tells mass how to accelerate”. This space-time curvature would also bend light and other radiations. Then, researchers found, through ‘gravitational lens effect’ that light from a distant star was displaced by a star in the foreground (4). Since then many instances of this effect of gravity on light rays have been reported, some times a proximal galaxy’s effect on distant stars or galaxies.

Other radiations such as radio waves are believed to travel at the speed of light but they have some special qualities. For example, radio waves go through walls with ease. There are stranger radiations (and particles) such as neutrinos, which can travel through trillions of tons of matter, also with ease. Some other strange phenomena in the universe that beg for explanation include the gravity and magnetism, both of which also go through almost anything. Then there is the question of how stars bun up hundreds of millions of tons of hydrogen every instant and yet live for billions of years and how, when a large star abruptly ends its life in a ‘supernova explosion’, it outshines the whole of its parent galaxy.

In this paper I present arguments that question some of the dogmas in current cosmology. With these I am able to explain many of the vexing questions hitherto unanswered. Like many a phenomenon in astronomy, proving some of these assertions may be difficult but I will outline some possible experiments to test them.

SPEED OF LIGHT AND RELATED QUESTIONS:

Terrestrial experiments have calculated the speed of light as 186,300 miles/second or 1/2999792458 Km/sec. As fast as light is, when considered in the context of the vastness of cosmos, it is not very fast at all. For example, it is believed light takes 8.3minutes to arrive from the sun, 16 mins. to cross earth’s orbit and all of 5 hours to reach Pluto. And the closest star will demand 41/2 years of time. While it is not very surprising, it is indeed a humbling thought that light takes all of 100,000 years to travel from one of our galaxy to the other end. And, ours is but one among hundreds of billions of galaxies in the universe.

Nevertheless, the speed of light is considered the speed limit of the universe. This is so well accepted that Einstein considered it the standard against which all other speeds are compared. He also suggested that it is the speed of light that is the constant in the universe and time will ‘dilate’ as one travels at speeds approaching the speed of light. He believed in this so completely that he even used this speed in his formula E=MC2 (where, E= the amount of energy, M= mass, C= speed of light).

Ironically, it was Einstein himself who predicted that the space and time warping effect of the intense gravity around large bodies such as stars will ’bend’ light (3). In his General Theory of Relativity, he stated that “according to the general theory of relativity, the lack of constancy of the velocity of light in vacuum, which constitutes one of the two fundamental assumptions of the special theory of relativity… cannot claim any unlimited validity. A curvature of rays of light can only take place when the velocity of propagation of light varies with position”. In other words, he even proposed that the bending of light rays necessarily means that light is also slowed around such objects. I will take the position that this effect is proof of not the ‘space-time curvature’ but that light has a finite mass. I will extend this observation to predict that not only will gravity slow light (and other radiations which have any mass), but this effect will be most prominent on the light that a star itself makes. Thus, most of the photons are held back at the point of origin, the surface of the star. By this same logic one could infer that away from the star, in the vacuum and near zero gravity state of the void of deep space, light will speed up infinitely. Also, light approaching a celestial body will accelerate due to increasing pull by its gravity. All these mean that the speed of light will vary depending on where such measurement is made, as well as which way the light is traveling in relation to large bodies.

Neutrinos, which are generated in large amounts as a by-product of the nuclear fusion reaction in stars and are released in vast quantities when large stars die in “supernova explosions”, have been known to reach the earth significantly before light does. The traditional explanation of the latter phenomenon is that neutrinos are generated when the star’s ‘core collapses’ and the light is produced at the instant of the supernova explosion and beyond . The curious thing is, however, that the time lag between the core collapse and the supernova explosion are seconds not hours. It took light 3 hours to reach the earth from supernova 1987A, after the flood of neutrinos was detected (6). This time lag can be explained in the context of the relative mass of photons and neutrinos. Although some believe neutrinos to be mass-less, generally they are thought to have a very small mass, probably much less than that of photons (7). Applying the logic I have outlined in the foregoing paragraph, one can infer that the reason neutrinos arrive earlier than light is their smaller mass although, all forms of radiations are produced by the explosion, at the same time. To me the most important inference from this phenomenon is that neutrinos probably travel faster than light. Thus, casting doubt on the time-honored tenet that light holds the speed limit in the universe.

It is known that light is stopped by almost any solid body, whereas other emanations such as radio waves and microwaves go through most solids. The conventional explanation of this phenomenon is that the radiations that penetrate solids (e.g.: radio waves) do so because of their wave lengths. However, some of the radiations with the shortest wave lengths (such as x-rays and gamma rays) also go through solids, thus disproving this assumption. The real reason for this phenomenon is probably that they have less mass than light and thus they are able to penetrate the nanospace between the electrons and the nucleus of the atom and between themselves. A useful analogy to understand this phenomenon is the ability of light to diffuse through the vapor of a solid, simply because the matter in this form is more loosely bound. Light is bent by refraction in water and other liquids and it is known to measurably slow down during transit through liquids. Recently, light has been experimentally slowed (9) and even stopped entirely (10). The principle is to confront the photons (in the form of a laser) with certain super-cooled atomic vapor, which then absorbs the photons. Now, could similar conditions exist in the far corners of the universe? Is it possible that even in nature, light could encounter the humiliating experience of actual stoppage? Such extreme examples again highlight the point that light does not have unlimited privileges in the universe….properties Einstein conferred on it.

Radio waves go through walls easily but metals do stop their transit; this may imply that these ‘waves’ are smaller than visible light but they still have enough mass to be stopped by the closely packed atoms of metals. In stark contrast, neutrinos pass though all solids with ease. Once again, one cannot escape the conclusion that this is due to its infinitely smaller size (compared to other radiations) and is less affected by gravity, enabling it to travel faster than all else.

Two of the fundamental forces in nature, gravity and magnetism also go through solids. In fact, in the case of the former, it is all pervading in the universe, at least where matter aggregates. Thus, in the domain of gravity there are no solid objects at all, only gravity fields, of varying degrees. In the context of the speed limit in the universe, I propose that gravity is the true contender and that it travels almost instantly across space. It is not so surprising at all because gravity does not have any opposing force to slow it down. Even gravity from another object is the vicinity might only help speed up this force. A simple investigation might help my contention that gravity is faster than light, here on earth. If the effect of moon’s gravity can be observed on the oceans before the light from moon appears on the horizon, gravity has traveled faster! Also, if one measures the gravity of sun before, during and after a solar eclipse, one might see that it (the gravity) appears long before light…a full 8.3min ahead! Another proof is that NASA scientists, when they calculate exact times for space rendezvous, typically pretend gravity is instantaneous. Thus far, this assumption has not failed them!

SOME SPECIAL EFFECTS OF GRAVITY’S INFLUENCE ON LIGHT:

Ever since the phenomenon of supernova explosion was discovered scientists have observed that for a short period such supernovae outshine the rest of the stars in the galaxy put together. No one has determined why one star at the instant of its death will muster so much energy. Large amounts of neutrinos also rush out of such supernovae (6,7) along with gamma rays and other radiations. All of these observations hint at the same phenomenon i.e.: at the instant of death the star loses all of its gravity and this releases all manner of radiations at one instant. In order to explain the large amounts of light and the other radiations that emanate from such supernova explosions, one has to speculate that vast amounts of the products of its own combustion remain captive by the intense gravity of the star. This is probably what creates and maintains a “photosphere” approximately 500 Km deep near the surface of our star, the sun and perhaps (by extrapolation), the other stars. And it is the release of these at an instant that makes the phenomenal outpouring at the time of the explosion.

A related puzzle that can also be explained by the effect of gravity on photons is how stars shine for as long as they do. How does a star burn up so much energy every instant and keep on doing it for billions of years? I think that the photons are not only held captive at the star’s surface, but they are somehow recycled. In other words, the fusion reaction is itself fueled by its products, through infinite cycles.

E=MC2

This formula makes two statements: First, the ‘mass’ of an object varies with its motion in space. This is contained in the version of the formula: E=moc2 (where, M0 is mass at rest). The second is that the amount of energy contained in matter is somehow related to the speed of light. These assumptions are both contentious.

1) E=M0 C2. One has to make the necessary distinction between ‘mass’ and weight. The latter is the product of mass and gravity. For example, in zero gravity an object of any mass will have no weight. It is the weight that will go up with acceleration, not the mass (which is by definition, a collection of atoms and molecules). No amount of acceleration will affect this quantity. I contend that the observed increase in weight (of, for example, accelerating particles in particle accelerators) is really an effect of a drag (Galileo’s inertia and Newton’s universal gravity). I prefer the latter and, to indicate the distinction between gravity (as felt by stationary objects) and the pull on accelerating objects, I suggest this special effect be called “Grav”.

2) The second objection I have for the formula is linking the speed of light to the energy output from a unit of ‘mass’. It implies that the amount of energy increases with the speed of travel (especially acceleration). If this were true, the mass of light itself will become prohibitively high for its own high-speed travel. I also have a philosophical objection to linking the speed of light (or for that matter, any radiation) to energy output from an atom!

THE EFFECT OF GRAVITY ON THE SPEED OF LIGHT:

Any measurement of speed of light on earth or in close orbit of earth is bound to be influenced by the gravitational pull of the planet. Therefore, in any such measurement, gravity should be factored in. For example, the speed of light could be measured as light travels towards a celestial object, directly away from it or parallel to its surface. Also, the size (and therefore the intensity of its gravity) of the body should be considered. In short, light and all other radiations can have several speeds based on their intrinsic mass, the neighboring large body wielding strong gravity and the direction of their travel.

THE TIME PARADOX:

To support the consequences of his Special Theory of Relativity, that of time dilation, Einstein used a myriad of “thought experiments”. In them he showed how an observer in motion will experience time differently from those who are stationary. While the first and the most basic effect of the relative motion is a gain in time (thus the famed “time dilation”), more subtle and contentious is his teaching that the observer in motion will also age slower.

In one version of the thought experiments, a subject is traveling on a train at a constant speed. Einstein stated that, from the perspective of a stationary observer on a platform, the subject in motion is gaining time. Thus at speeds approaching the speed of light, the effect on time becomes very profound. Submerged and forgotten in this extrapolation is that the effect is simply an illusion the solitary observer identifies, with his ‘time’ measuring device. Is time really changed by the moving subject’s motion? For analyzing this, let us device a modified version of the above experiment:

The subject on the train is also reading a book; she has trained herself to read 10 pages an hour at a constant speed. She has a clock with her that is timing both her train journey and the time she takes to read the pages. The observer also times both events, using an identical time measuring device. At the end of the journey both devices compare notes; as expected, both declare that the traveler ‘gained’ time during the journey. But alas, both also recorded identical times as it applies to the traveler’s reading. Now, how could this be? She couldn’t have both gained time and not gained any time, at the same ‘time’!

Another thought experiment is described Brian Greene in his in his book “The Elegant Universe” (8). This illustrates a simple clock constructed using a single photon bouncing back and forth between two parallel mirrors, placed about 6 inches apart. A second is the time the photon takes to make a billion to and fro journeys. If the two mirrors then move in unison, the figure shows that the photon, as it has to travel at an angle (“from the perspective of an observer”) (to fall on the opposite mirror at the predetermined location), the clock gains time or time dilates. One flaw of this thought experiment is that, in order to show significant tangential motion, the movement of the mirror is so exaggerated that they might be traveling at several times the speed of light. But the real problem is that whether it suits the perspective of the observer or not, the trajectory of the photon remains exactly perpendicular to the mirrors and the only effect the sufficiently rapid motion of the mirrors will do is that the photon might fall progressively behind by a certain distance. Eventually, the photon may even fly off through one end of the ‘clock’.

In both of the above thought experiments and all the others, the proponents first make note of an illusion (“from the perspective of the stationary observer”), then make it and its consequence facts. Then follow great leaps of logic that lead to profound pronouncements. It’s like declaring, after a magician produces a rabbit from a hat (again “from the perspective of” the fooled audience) and make the next great leap of logic that all rabbits come from hats. It doesn’t stop there! You move to the next level. If hats make rabbits instantly, then rabbits are the fastest animals in the universe! This is analogous to the declaration that if time is not constant, speed of light is. Then on to, this speed is the speed limit of the universe and so on.

‘SPACE-TIME CURVATURE’ AROUND LARGE CELESTIAL OBJECTS:

This is one of the principal constructs embodied in Einstein’s “General Theory of Relativity”. In his elevator and spaceship ‘thought experiments’ he showed that the subjects undergoing acceleration will experience the pull (towards the floor) and that they will not be able to distinguish that feeling from the effect of gravity. The feeling of weightlessness such subjects will have inside a free-falling elevator was also advanced to support this notion. He used this every day experience to explain the effect of gravity around large celestial bodies i.e.: by the “Principle of Equivalence” the gravity around stars and other celestial objects, he said, is identical to the above effect. He expanded this notion further to state that ‘space-time’ will curve around such objects and in response, the other objects accelerate towards the body. In other words, the satellites are in orbit as a response to this ‘space-time’ warping. He conjectured that one effect of this would be bending of all radiations, including visible light. His reasoning was that a ray of light coming through a window of a speeding space craft will appear to bend as its target keeps moving constantly upward. This is another example of the absurd leap of logic he has employed in other thought experiments. However, by plotting the position of stars in the background, both before and during a solar eclipse, scientists confirmed this ‘gravitational lens effect’ (4).

There are several flaws in the above, superficially elegant hypothesis:

  1. If the presence of a body curves the ‘space-time’ around it and this curvature tell the surrounding matter ‘how to accelerate’, what explains the actual congregation of dust and particles destined to become stars and planets, in the first place? Clearly, there is no pre-existing body to tell the surrounding matter how to behave. A mutual attraction by the matter (this is gravity) elegantly and completely explains this phenomenon.
  2. The assumption of a spherical shape by all bodies that congregate as above is also very easily explained by this inherent gravity. What happens to such bodies next depends on how much matter has congregated in one place. If the amount is sufficient, the pressure and heat ignites the nuclear furnace; lesser bodies are relegated to the status of planets and others.
  3. Space-time warping does not explain the universal phenomenon of the orbits of planets and satellites around the equator of stars and other parent bodies. If the smaller bodies are told to ‘accelerate’ towards parent body, why do they end up orbiting rather than colliding with it? All planets orbit our sun in an anti-clockwise fashion, as viewed from the north pole of the solar system. Sun’s inherent gravity, working in concert with its spin completely explains this while one would be hard-pressed to ascribe it to a ‘space-time warping’ effect. Even a universal gravity as proposed by Newton will not explain this orderly orbit, without the addition of the spin. Interestingly, this spin both aids the satellites in their spin and keeps them at certain distances.
  4. In the elevator/spaceship experiments, Einstein and his followers have ignored an important fundamental. The force that glues the traveler to the floor upon acceleration is actually the gravity (from the earth). As the spaceship gets free of the gravitational influence of the earth, the acceleration will have less and less effect and eventually cease to have any effect. This is testable in space travel aboard a rocket or shuttle. If an astronomer is placed on a chair with inbuilt weighing device, one will find that (despite the acceleration), the astronaut weighs less and less as the ship reaches farther and farther from the earth. At some distance, the weight will become zero or near-zero, again despite the acceleration. Even more compelling is what happens during free-fall of either an elevator (that is malfunctioning) or a plane during a free fall. Although both structures are accelerating towards the earth, (Galileo showed this to be 9.3Kg/sec) the inhabitants experience weightlessness. By Einstein’s argument, they should instead be plastered to the ceiling of the plane or elevator. The reason for not experiencing the weight is that here the bodies are traveling in the same direction as the gravity of the earth. As the bodies are descending at relatively different rates (the heavier plane and the elevator, compared to the traveler confined in a quantity of atmosphere,) the inside inhabitants experience some degree of weightlessness.

Let us apply these ideas to what happens to space around large bodies: space that is devoid all matter, will not be affected by gravity. In other words, ‘curvature' or ‘warping’ of ‘space’ is an unlikely scenario. Likewise, ‘time’ which has no physical presence and is also not composed of matter will not be affected by gravity.

Two interesting phenomena will help question the notion of ‘space-time curvature’, at least around the earth. The first is the way moon presents only one face to the earth at all times. This cannot be explained by such warping effect by earth’s gravity. As the moon rotates on its axis while it also orbits the earth, only a constant pull from and synchronized spin with the earth can explain this phenomenon. The second is the appearance of the sunset and moonrise as seen from the earth. In both of these instances, the object at the horizon appears orange, larger, more or less oblong/oval and the edges appear somewhat serrated. Everyone knows the reason from the red orange color of the setting sun and the rising moon. The other phenomena are probably explicable by the fact that the atmosphere is progressively denser close to the earth; the atmospheric pressure (29.921 inches of Hg (inHg) or 760 mmHg at earth’s surface) is an indirect effect of earth’s gravity and tells us that the effect is diminishing in direct proportion to the distance from the earth. The observer’s view of the setting sun and rising moon is through a very complex system of lenses made by layers upon layers of such variably dense air close to the earth. I contend that the oval, irregular images that appear at the horizon are actually produced by the refraction through such lenses and actually present themselves before the bodies are at that location. Then, it lingers for a while, starts getting smaller and then appears to rise and get even smaller, more round and with clean edges. It is educational to remind ourselves that Galileo’s original observation of “acceleration of gravity” (which is 9.8m/sec2 at the surface of the earth) is just another proof that the attraction is an inherent property of the celestial body we inhabits! The third is the seemingly obsessive nature of the roots of all flora to grow towards the center of the earth. The space contributes nothing at all to this phenomenon; the incessant pull of earth’s gravity has everything to do with it. Yet another example is the fate of light photons in the sun and all other stars. It has been reported that a photon that is made in the interior of the sun takes up to 1 million year to reach the surface! The reason for this is the incessant pull of sun’s own gravity; the surrounding space plays no role!

The most important message from the above examples of natural phenomena is that the effect is emanating from the celestial body, in a progressively diminishing fashion. This is inconsistent with any ‘space-time warping’ scenario!

CONCLUSION:

Three areas already covered in some detail in the foregoing sections deserve some clarification. These are:

  1. Speed of light, according to the author
  2. Time dilation and slowing of clocks
  3. True nature of gravity

1. SPEED OF LIGHT:

According to the principles set forth in this paper, light cannot boast any special place. It is not the fastest radiation; it simply is the visible one. This fact alone may be tip off to its mass (and therefore its speed); invisible parts of the spectra may be composed of electromagnetic radiations of smaller mass but the visible ones (photons) alone can excite the light-detecting layers of the retina. The “solar constant” or the solar incoming electromagnetic radiation per unit area is 1.361 kW/m2 (11) or approximately 4 lbs of light from the sun fall on the earth every second. Given this small but finite mass, the bending of light around celestial bodies is understandable, indeed expected. The new ideas proposed in this paper are that, the speed of light will be faster as it approaches such bodies and slower as it leaves the bodies due to gravitational pull from them. Also, in the voids of space between stars and galaxies, in the vacuum and zero or near zero gravity, it is proposed that light will escape the restraints and speed up considerably. By the same argument, those radiations that have less mass will be able to travel much faster than light. Neutrinos are at the extreme end of this spectrum. I propose, finally, that the fastest of all is gravity, as it has to regulate the orderly motions of the cosmos from one instant to the next. It couldn’t possibly go as slow as light and take many hours to reach even the outer planets of the solar system!

In experiments showing that the speed of light is constant in ‘every direction’ (i.e.: north, south, east and west) it is interesting to note that all of these were done close to the earth’s surface and necessarily parallel to it. Such experiments should be done as light travels perpendicular to the earth, both towards and away from it as well as far away from any body such as a star or planet, in zero gravity. Then many of the predictions in this paper may be proven correct.

2. TIME DILATION AND SLOWING OF CLOCKS:

Arguments have been put forward in this paper that light and travel probably do not affect the real quantity of time, only the artificial measures made by our various devices. To prove this fact experimentally, suitable time measuring devices must be constructed. They should not depend on divisions of time based on the earth’s rotation on its axis (the day) or its orbit around the sun (the year) and their fractions. The flow time has to be charted by some other means, something not affected by our earthly goings on.

What about the slowing of clocks taken on high-speed flights and the slower decay of cesium in particle accelerators. I think in both instances the effect is probably related to disruption of the mechanism by the speed of travel (remember that in both, small, elementary particles were used; the atomic clocks’ ticking and the decay of the atoms of cesium). It is the drag due to the pull of gravity in earth’s vicinity that effected this, especially at the very past pace of travel of the particle accelerator experiments. If this is so, such experiments should be repeated in the outer space, in zero gravity and then measurements done comparing stationary clocks with those in constant velocity travel.

3. THE TRUE NATURE OF GRAVITY:

Newton’s universal gravity had been very successful in predicting celestial events; a notable exception was Mercury’s perihelion. However, considering the uncertainties of the myriad interactions between neighboring bodies as well as the parent star, even this slight error in prediction is acceptable. Einstein’s version, using the ‘space-time warping’ effect from sun and the other bodies has been hailed as a stunning success as the perihelion’s prediction was closer to the known (measured) value. My suspicion here is that Einstein worked on the value of the ‘space-time curvature’ until the equations gave this close-to-true value for the perihelion. We know that he did a similar exercise on his formula for ‘cosmological constant’ when he heard about the ‘Big Bang’ and the expanding universe. He then changed the formula, leaving out the lambda or cosmological constant.

The premise that Einstein used to arrive at the space-time curvature is his ‘thought experiment’ in which a ray of light filtering through a window of an accelerating space ship will appear to bend, as progressively a lower and lower part of the opposite wall of the ship will be presented to the ray. Since this apparent bending (as it appears to some one outside the ship) is due to the acceleration, he stated that acceleration of the celestial bodies will do the same (i.e.: bend light). This he called the “Equivalent Principle”. Of course, acceleration alone cannot explain this phenomenon; otherwise humans at opposing surfaces of the earth will not all remain upright. He solved this problem by the notion of ‘mass tells space-time how to curve’ and this ‘curvature tells mass how to accelerate’. “Acceleration” in this context apparently means the tendency for the satellites to remain in orbit.

I have great reservation about equating a hypothetical bending of light rays due to acceleration of a space ship to the exquisite phenomenon of gravity felt by all bodies; within themselves and between them. Many of my objections are in the main text but striking are the way all celestial bodies attain spherical shape, the very orderly orbits of planets in the plane of the equator (at least in our solar system), all orbits in an anticlockwise direction as viewed from the north pole of the solar system and all bodies (the star, planets and their satellites) are also rotating on their axes and at least many of the close-in bodies rotating in synchrony with the parent body. It is very hard for me to ascribe all these properties to a mere ‘curvature’ of empty space. A mutually attractive force that emanates from each body (of any size) explains all the phenomena; the contorted reasoning embodied in Einstein’s ‘space-time curvature’ is an absurdity in comparison.

If the objection to Newton’s universal gravity is simply the difficulty in grasping how a body will influence another at a distance almost instantly, I can understand. But there are innumerable phenomena in nature that we know exist but we cannot explain fully; with time a true explanation of this force will also become available. No matter how the effect is transmitted, my explanation of the phenomena of universal gravitation is as follows: it is a fundamental property of all elements of the universe; the relative strength depends on the size of that body.

In the realm of the gravity, physical bodies do no exist. The universe is composed of gravitational force-fields of varying strengths and of them interacting with one another. In a solar system for example, the largest body, the star has the most gravity and the other large bodies respond to it. Smaller bodies in close proximity to these other (satellite planets) bodies are influenced more by then than the star. There is a continuum of gravity throughout the solar system, thus imparting order. Should a dramatic change suddenly occur in this balanced system, immediately, adjustments of the gravitational force fields occur and restore another balance. For example, if the sun disappeared suddenly, lesser bodies will start orbiting Jupiter, after rearrangement of the fields are complete. This then is an almost immediate means of conveying gravity from one body’s to the rest.

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