On Tue, Dec 24, 2013 at 8:26 PM, Edgar L. Owen <edgaro...@att.net> wrote:

> Liz states that "Special relativity shows that there is no such thing as
> a "common present moment". but this is incorrect.
> Actually special relativity shows exactly the opposite. In my book I
> explain how this works. It is well known, though little understood, that
> everything without exception continually travels through spacetime at the
> speed of light according to its own comoving clock.

Why are clocks needed?  Isn't it enough to say everything travels through
spacetime at c?  In other words, in one year, every object traces a path
one light year long through coordinate time.

> I call this the STc Principle.

Does STc stand for something?

> This is a well known consequence of special relativity but actually as I
> point out in my book this is an even more fundamental Principle than
> Special Relativity and Special Relativity is properly a consequence of it
> and can be derived from it.
> What the STc Principle says is that the total velocity through both space
> and through time of everything without exception is = to the speed of
> light.

Right, this follows from using a Euclidean coordinate system instead of a
Minkowski coordinate system.

> This is the reason that time slows on a clock moving with some relative
> spatial velocity, as Special Relativity tells us.

It also explains clock desynchronization and length contraction.

> It also demonstrates that the speed of light is properly understood as the
> speed of TIME. That's what c really is. Light just happens to move entirely
> in space according to its own comoving clock, therefore its entire
> spacetime velocity is in space only.

Hence why matter contains so much energy: 1 gram of anti-matter (which
travels in the opposite direction through the dimension of time) when it
hits 1 gram of matter, converts into 2 grams worth of light. Matter trades
its velocity through time for velocity through space.

> Anyway it is precisely this STc Principle that puts both the arrow of time
> and a privileged present moment on a firm physical basis. Why? Because it
> requires that everything must be in one particular place in spacetime (the
> present moment) and moving at the speed of light (the arrow of time).

The present moment is only a three dimensional slice through 4-dimensional
spacetime. Two co-moving observers exist in different presents, even if
they are in the "same place" and "same time". Are you familiar with
Reitdijk-Putnam argument (
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rietdijk–Putnam_argument ) ? I think
relativity of simultaneity is proof that there is no such thing as an
objective moving present moment.  Thus, the perceived flow of time can only
be a construction (illusion) within the mind's of the observers. This is
what I (and I think Liz) find it confusing when you say all observers exist
in the same present. The only way I can interpret that sentence to be true
is if you consider the entire "block time" to be a single present moment,
but this is a somewhat radical redefinition of the word "present".

> So exactly contrary to your statement, it is precisely special relativity,
> properly understood, that puts both the arrow of time and a common present
> moment on a firm physical basis.

Let me ask you a few questions which might help me understand your view: Do
you believe past moments in time still exist? Do you think future moments
in time already exist? Is Julius Caesar experiencing Ancient Rome (in some
location in space-time 2000 ly away?

> This insight simultaneously solves two of the big problems of the
> philosophy of science, the source of the arrow of time,

This is solved more-or-less by statistics, I think. I don't see how whether
past moments in time continue to exist (or not) serves as any justification
or explanation for the arrow of time. (What would change regarding the
arrow of time if past moments continued to exist?)

> and the reason for a common present moment,

I think the notion of a common present moment is only a loose convention,
agreed upon only by some limited group of contemporaries. Other
contemporaries, are no less wrong or justified to believe that their
(different) time is the present.

though no one seems to have recognized this prior to my exposition in 1997
> in my paper 'Spacetime and Consciousness'.
Do you have a link?



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