Friday, December 21, 2007

The Fifth Dimension

Not the singing group, but the next “identifier” after the conventional three and time as the fourth. If we want to identify, describe, “pinpoint” (not literally, of course, because an “object”, including living beings, as I mean the term, encompasses never as nonexistent an essence as an infinitely small point) a three-dimensional object along or across all its dimensions, it has long been contended that we need include time as the fourth; now we know where and when something is, so we can really locate it. But, can we? I contend, “no, we can’t” – we still don’t know exactly what it is we’re locating or identifying. What’s still missing from our dimensional coordinates is its existential reality (or plural, “realities”). So, if we’re talking about a person, we need to know not only where and when she or he is, but also what they were or are or will be feeling, thinking, etc.. Also, what’s going on inside them, in terms of their molecules’ Brownian motion, their constantly kinetic and changing atomic structure, their biochemistry, their synaptic, other electric, and metabolic occurrences, etc.? An inanimate object may not be as complex, but it still has its changing atomic realities going on.
If we want to get to the real me, we must locate me in time and space; let’s say at the intersection of longitude and latitude on December First, at 3:54 P.M., 1954, A.D.; but who is that “me”, at that time and place; I mean, who am I, really? Or, for that matter, what television are we talking about when we say a “Magnavox”, of a particular model, “pinpointed” in time and space? For example, is it on or off, and, if on, what signal(s) is/are it receiving? This we can somewhat know by knowing what programs were being broadcast then and there. We can check a TV Guide© for its time, place and available channels, but if we want to be even more precise, we need to account for the transmissions getting to us at about the speed of light (a microfraction of a light year from source of transmission).

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