Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Going to the Light

A direct link to the above video is at

White noise is a random signal (or process) with a flat power spectral density. In other words, the signal contains equal power within a fixed bandwidth at any center frequency. White noise draws its name from white light in which the power spectral density of the light is distributed over the visible band in such a way that the eye's three color receptors (cones) are approximately equally stimulated.

An infinite-bandwidth, white noise signal is purely a theoretical construction. By having power at all frequencies, the total power of such a signal is infinite and therefore impossible to generate. In practice, however, a signal can be "white" with a flat spectrum over a defined frequency band.

- from the wikipedia article on white noise
There's a lot of connections in the above to what we've been talking about here with the Imagining the Tenth Dimension project. In entries like Randomness and the Missing 96%, Unlikely Events and Timelessness, and Imagining the Omniverse, we've talked about the tenth dimension as being all possibilities existing simultaneously, an enfolded symmetry that, like a pencil balanced on its tip, is always ready to fall one way or another and create a pattern, or create a universe. In my book I also compare the tenth dimension to white noise or white light. Here's how I end chapter one:
In the picture we’ve constructed here, the tenth dimension when viewed by itself becomes quite uninteresting compared to the multitude of possibilities that are generated when we descend down to the dimensions below. Speaking poetically, the tenth dimension is like white noise, an endless field of all colours and vibrations blurred together. Because it encompasses all possible realities without delineation between those realities, it is like a void. Where things do get interesting is when we cut cross-sections out of that formlessness to view some specific aspect: like our two-dimensional Flatlander viewing the feet of a human creature visiting from the dimension above as ten lines that become two, there is no way for anyone in a dimension less than ten to perceive all of the possibilities that the tenth dimension contains.
In any dimension lower than ten, all that can be viewed of reality is cross sections. But that is what makes our existence so interesting: not the infinite “white noise” of possibilities; but that out of all those possibilities that could be, we are in this very specific one, right here, and right now.
I think the connection of white noise or white light to infinity in the wikipedia description we just looked at is very interesting, since I've talked about the tenth dimension in those terms as well, and how each spatial dimension has its own version of infinity. As I've said in entries like "Is there more than one infinity?", "Can there be a positive and negative infinity?", and "Why stop at ten dimensions?", a very important phrase to remember is "there are many roads to infinity".

Thinking about the tenth dimension as "white light", then, brings to mind a metaphysical connection as well. What are we talking about when we hear that a dying person or a departing soul should "go to the light"? In the Big Bang and the Big O, we quoted Oscar Janiger, who described death as a return to "the fundamental substrate of all things" - another way of describing the "outside the system" qualities of the tenth dimension.

In entries like Elvis and the Electrons and We Start with a Point, we've talked about how this works from a physics standpoint. In entries like You are Me and We are All Together and I Know You, You Know Me, we got more specific on how this could be related to ideas of all conscious awareness being aspects of the same connected whole. But, as we just discussed in entries like Do You Believe in Ghosts? and Have You Ever Seen an Aura?, the idea that there is more than just the physical world we see around us is a concept that some people can accept and others cannot. I have to presume, dear reader, that if you have made it this far then you are willing to at least consider the possibilities.

To finish, here's one the 26 songs I wrote for this project, and it's about the tiny little hints we catch fleeting glimpses of that suggest to us that the universe is even more strange and complex than we've been led to believe: the song is called "From the Corner of My Eye".

A direct link to the above video is at

Coming up next: Slices of Reality

Enjoy the journey!

Rob Bryanton

PS - Due to popular demand we now have a 6 DVD set of video blogs for sale at the Tenth Dimension store. Thanks everyone for your support of this project!

A direct link to the above video is at


KansasGal71 said...

Hi, I am Kansasgal71 at a forum for the tv show Lost. I hope you are also a fan, because the physics of Lost match your ideas almost exactly. I have used your video to help explain how string theory works. So don't be surprised if you suddenly get tons of hits!!

Unknown said...

White Noise is like Emptyness or Formlessness in Buddhism?

Tenth Dimension Vlog playlist