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time-and-light

Does the Speed of Light Affect How We View Time and Space?

Does the Speed of Light Affect How We View Time and Space?

 The speed of light doesn't affect time and space, but it affects our thoughts. Space is massless and untouchable. 

Time is a concept invented to tell the time of day by using clocks that tick at the same rate as the Earth rotates. 

Einstein's relativity has a mistake that we are still making. 

He said it takes time for light to move; therefore, events that we see occur at different times. 

For example, they say the sunlight shows what the Sun looked like 8 minutes ago. These are false assumptions that most people believe. 

It's true that the closer someone is to an event, the sooner they see the event, and the farther away you are, the longer it takes light to reach you. 

But the mistake is in saying that time is relative to the distance light travels, and even more incorrect by saying you can measure time by distances. 

Yes, we can measure distances using a clock and a reflector, but we can only measure the time it takes light to move a certain distance if we measure the distance. 

Time isn't a measuring device. We use clocks to measure durations of motion (time). Time is measured motion by using a clock.

Light moves by electromagnetic force. Time doesn't move light. We use clocks to measure the speed of light. 

If we know the distance to the Sun, we can calculate it takes 8 minutes to travel to Earth. But we don’t see what the Sun looked like 8 minutes ago.

We see the sunlight that enters our eyes at our present moment. We don’t see the Sun itself. 

The same thing applies to starlight. We don’t see stars. The starlight isn’t the star. It's light emitted from a star. 

The light from stars is constantly streaming, so we see starlight arriving at our present moment. 

We can’t see the past that has happened. All we see is light at our present moment in the universe. 

The speed of light is finite, so the travel time to reach us depends on the distance. 

If a person is closer to the Sun, he will see the light sooner at his present moment. But since we don’t know the distance to stars or objects, we don’t know the amount of travel time. 

If a star goes supernova or a lightning bolt strikes a train, we don’t see the result until the light reaches our eyes in our present moment. 

That doesn’t mean that we see the past. It just means the finite speed of light reaches us at our present moment, and everyone has their present moment. 

If we treat the concept of time as having a force, we give physical power to the numbers on a clock. 

Time doesn't have a power or force that causes things to happen at different times. Time only exists on clocks and our thoughts.

Does time only move forward?

The observable evidence shows us that events always move forward. 

Time is a measurement of motion, and we describe events using time. 

We use a clock or watch and say things like our trip took 3 hours. The movie took 2 hours, and we drove home in 30 minutes. 

It takes 3 minutes to poach my egg, and it will never return to its past form.

The scientific evidence shows that light travels forward and never backward. The Earth rotates only one way while orbiting the Sun. 

When you drop a ball, it always falls down instead of up. But time isn’t a physical thing that we can see or touch. Time doesn’t exist in the way things exist. 

Time only exists as a number on clocks, and we use the numbers to count how many minutes a movie takes. 

Time is a description of the motion we experience. 

You can describe events in a backward fashion and play a video backward, but you are not moving backward in time. You are in your present moment, watching a video. 

Your mind remembers events from the past and dreams of returning to those events, but it’s impossible. The past has happened, and it doesn’t exist anymore. 

The only time we have is this moment that is moving forward to a future that doesn’t exist. 

Time has emerged from our experience of living. 

We feel our hearts beating and listen to our thoughts, but we can't see the time unless we remind our minds to think, and that's our moment of time.

Do We View Spacetime as Curved Fabric?

Is space a physical thing that curves around a mass so that light must move in a curved path? 

According to Einstein’s general relativity, the motion of particles toward a massive object follows a curved path. 

Einstein’s theory describes the trajectory that particles follow as they accelerate to a massive object such as the Sun. 

Minkowski spacetime is a geometric description of the motion using Einstein’s equations to describe the path of acceleration. 

But the theory isn’t a physical curvature of space. It’s the curvature of motion. 

As a particle moves closer to the Sun, it moves faster and faster because of the acceleration force from gravity. The motion of the particle moves in a geometric curve. 

On Earth, when you drop something, it falls straight toward the center of the Earth, and Newton’s law of gravity describes the acceleration. 

If you throw a ball, it follows a geometric curve towards the center of Earth, but because the speed of the ball is slow, its curvature is still described by Newton’s laws of gravity. 

In space, particles move at relativistic speeds to the Sun, and Newton’s laws don’t account for the speed and effects of time dilation. 

Einstein imagined that light moving past the Sun must be experiencing time dilation, causing light to follow a curved path. 

Then Minkowski described the effects as spacetime curvature, but it was never meant as an actual physical curvature. 

The mathematical description describes the path in space, but it’s not curved space. 

How did we end up thinking that space is curved? If a mathematical description is treated as a physical thing, that’s what happens. 

I'm sorry, you can't time travel because it's science fiction. Each week I examine science news and question if the descriptions explain the actual science. 

Often they use incredible headlines and turn science into science fiction.

Thanks for reading about the time in our lives. I appreciate your time and hope you get some meaningful ideas at https://lovinthings.com/. Be well, and have a great day. xoxo 

About the Author Erik Lovin

Erik has a BSc degree and is a retired professional photographer who is now a published author of many books. His passion is understanding how life and the universe work. He is currently blogging about the science of the Big Bang and science in your life. Erik is helping his tribe with questions about the universe. His goal is to help find a theory of everything (TOE). In order to do that, he is trying to prove light has mass and that the fabric of spacetime is a false theory. We are welcoming questions and answers that you might have about the universe.

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