A direct link to the above video is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQVjPMfa4HI
From the beginning of this project, we've been talking about a new way of visualizing the extra dimensions that acknowledges their basic nature: because they are spatial dimensions, we know that each new dimension adds an additional degree of freedom, and each adds a way to get to parts of the information that becomes our reality that were unavailable from the dimensions below. In Moving Dimensions and Synchromysticism, I talked about a very useful concept introduced by Dr. Eliott McGucken with his Moving Dimensions Theory:
The only way to stay stationary in the fourth dimension is to move at the speed of light. Ergo the fourth dimension is expanding at the rate of "c" relative to the three spatial dimensions.While Dr. McGucken is willing to acknowledge the possibility of additional dimensions, his theory focuses on the fourth.
This time around I'd like to play with some other creative visualizations. Here's a very simple graph I've created that tries to help us visualize the expanding possibilities that are added with each extra dimension:
Each additional dimension is at "right angles" to the one below, and each adds an additional data-set that was previously inaccessible. From the mind-boggling realm of our 3D universe of seventy sextillion stars, we expand to a 4D realm of the quantized frames that make up time's arrow (as I've talked about in entries like The Flipbook Universe, Time is a Direction and Time in Either Direction). From there we expand to the 5D realm of available choices which the David Deutsch team at Oxford have proven are equally valid and equivalent at both the quantum and macro levels (though Dr. Deutsch, I'm sure, would ask me to say that in his opinion those branches are not a proof of extra dimensions), and so on.
Our poor minds are not designed to deal with such scales, but my way of visualizing reality does provide us with a way to hold ten dimensions in our imaginations, simply by working up through one layer after another. As simple as this graph I'm showing you here may be, this "V" encompasses the omniverse of all possible expressions of energy and information by the time we are out to the 10, the widest part of the graph.
Here's where we get into a new idea now: I was thinking about the contention from some physicists that our universe is actually constrained at the 3rd dimension and the 7th dimension, because the superstrings that create our reality are embedded in branes (which are referred to as a D3-brane and a D7-brane) within those dimensions. Looking at the simple "V" above, how could we represent such a thing? I imagined "twisting" the "V" at dimension 3 and dimension 7, kind of like making balloon animals at a kids' party. Here's what our graph looks like with those two twists added:
Here's what I immediately noticed: if we add these two twists, we still have a diagram that reflects what I have been talking about. The tenth dimension is still the widest part of the graph, because it includes the most possibilities. But the fifth dimension, which is where Kaluza proved and Einstein eventually agreed our physical reality comes from, is still wider than the fourth. I have claimed in my book and this blog many times now that this is the important key to this way of visualizing reality - the branching possibilities that are available to us through chance, choice, and the actions of others, come from a fifth-dimensional probability space, and the sixth dimension contains the parts of that probability space which are inaccessible from our current position within the fifth dimension. Would the fluid nature of what we're talking about be better conveyed by a 3D ball at the bottom, rather than the diamond shape we're seeing here? Perhaps. Likewise, if we think of a quantum observer being perched at that crossover point in the third dimension, and imagine them looking "up" to the higher dimensions, we can see how their fourth dimensional "line of time" and their fifth dimensional "probability space" would be all that they could see: the sixth dimension would be like the dark side of the moon, hidden from view. The idea that the fourth, fifth, and sixth dimension create a unified whole of all possible timelines for our universe which becomes a constrained "point" (or brane) within the seventh dimension does tie very nicely into this way of visualizing how one dimension relates to another that we've been playing with in this project.
(The idea that our fifth dimensional probability space does not include the wave function of all possible expressions for our universe--which would be the whole of the sixth dimension--also gives us a way to imagine why it is that our universe's wavefunction includes a version of the universe where it's 2008 and dinosaurs still walk the earth, but we never accidentally encounter that timeline: because those versions are at an additional right angle from our 5D probability space, in that sixth dimension which is inaccessible to us but just as real: more about all this in my upcoming blog entries.)
In blog entries like Randomness and the Missing 96%, and Unlikely Events and Timelessness, we've talked about the role of chance and probability in all of this. Perhaps, then, rather than diamond shapes, rather than circles, we should use bell curves to represent what happens between the twists? Another interesting tangent to the discussion. In any case, the arrows I have added here indicate the places where our model is most fluid (green arrows), and the places where our model is most constrained (red arrows). The tenth dimension, then, as the underlying state of quantum indeterminacy, from which all possible universes and all possible patterns of information (including those, as I discussed in "God 2.0" that some of us might want to refer to as The Creator), would be as far as we need to go.
One of the criticisms I sometimes hear of this project is that it seems arbitrary for me (or anyone else) to stop at ten. Just because I can't think of any further possible expressions of the information that becomes our reality, doesn't that merely indicate a limitation of my own imagination? And I'm not talking about the M-Theory idea of 11 dimensions here: as I've said before, those 11 dimensions are ten spatial dimensions plus one of time, and my model incorporates time as a direction in one of the spatial dimensions, so time is accounted for in my model, no need to count it as a separate "dimension".
But while I was playing with my graph paper, I thought I might as well see what happens if the exact same pattern continued to repeat. What I saw I'm not going to try to offer any explanations for, I throw this out only as an amusing part of the game we're playing here: if there are, as some have suggested, infinite dimensions, then perhaps you could continue this pattern of twists forever. But what immediately caught my eye as a tiny bit of synchronicity, is that 26 comes up as one of the "most fluid" dimensions if we continue this pattern, in the same way that 10 does as well.
Since string theorists had proposed for a number of years that our reality comes not from the tenth but the twenty-sixth dimension, this seemed like enough of a "how about that" moment that I thought I would pass it on. Again, I'm not trying to say that this proves we are also constrained by branes at the 13th and 21st dimensions, or that the 17th dimension also contains some important layer at which the possibilities become the most wide open: for me, ten is as far as we need to go. But the coincidence of 26 coming up in this graph was too good to pass up, my apologies if I have now completely confused you all as to what I'm up to here!
As a bit of an homage to the number 26 and its historical relevance to cosmology, 26 is the number of songs I attached to this project. Here then, to conclude this blog entry is song 14 of 26, this one is about how there might be a part of our consciousness that remembers where we come from, whatever dimension you would like to imagine that to be: "I Remember Flying".
A direct link to this video can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Soe2swgtsE
Enjoy the journey,
Next: David Jay Brown and Psychedelics