Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Prescience of The Book



I've been marveling and wondering about the prescience of those primitive and superstitious ancients.

Here's another one to ponder:

"He...hangeth the earth upon nothing." -- Job 26:7

I asked an atheist friend of mine, "How could Job and Moses have known that the Earth hangs on nothing?"

He said it was just blind luck. An accident like NGC 7603 and NGC 4319 and all the other dischordant redshift associations.

Personally, I find that to be a hard leap of faith to believe.

Like David Hume, I don't believe in miracles.

Causality is a priori so there must be a reason why Job and Moses said that.

It's not like they could've flipped a coin and said, "Eureka! The Earth hangs on nothing and I'm going to write it down for all posterity."

27 comments:

Raptor Lewis said...

Well, what was before the Universe? Nothing, right? And, since space isn't a material thing, we just happened to see he was right. I mean, it seems to me just common sense. And, like everybody else, he had a curiousity about the Universe.

OilIsMastery said...

Mr. Lewis,

"Well, what was before the Universe? Nothing, right?"

Sort of. Nothing cannot exist. The universe is defined as everything that physically exists including all time. The universe is a concept and not an object of experience.

"And, since space isn't a material object, we just happened to see he was right."

Are you saying Job and Moses understood the ideality of space prior to Zeno? But still, how could they have known the Earth hangs on nothing?

"I mean, it seems to me just common sense. And, like everybody else, he had a curiousity about the Universe."

If it's common sense, do you have quotes from other sources saying the same thing?

The natives of Delaware thought the world rested on a Great Turtle.

Hindus that the world rested on an elephant and that the elephant rested on a tortoise.

Raptor Lewis said...

Okay, you got me there. I'm just thinking allowed. But, based on what I know about humanity, the curiousity is there, expressed or not. Remember that I know almost nothing about Astronomy and physics compared to you.

Raptor Lewis said...

I meant "aloud."

OilIsMastery said...

Mr. Lewis,

Don't sell yourself short. I don't know as much as you think I do...=)

Quantum_Flux said...

Why so much credit to Moses? He didn't invent anything, right?

Tom Marking said...

Dang it, OIM. There you go again, cherry picking verses that support your viewpoint while ignoring others that don't.

The following are from the King James Bible online:
http://www.kingjamesbible.com

Just 4 verses further on we find - Job 26:11:
"The pillars of heaven tremble and are astonished at his reproof."

Pillars of heaven? Heaven needs to be held up? How did they know that?

Genesis 1.6-7:
"And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so."

There is water above the sky? How did they know that?

Ezekiel 1:26:
"And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it."

Above a solid sky sits a throne with a guy sitting in it. How the heck did they know that one?

Tom Marking said...

@Quantum_Flux "Why so much credit to Moses? He didn't invent anything, right?"

People are challenging the historicity of Jesus of Nazareth. What does that say about the historicity of Moses, who if he existed at all, was one millennium earlier?

Quantum_Flux said...

Joseph Smith was a real person and everything he said about Native American history was correct too. The angel, the hat, the golden tablets, they are all true. Do you know how I know that? It is because the Mormon RELIGION formed about 150 years ago. Since it was so recent, then it must be true. Who says miracles don't still happen, hahaha!

Quantum_Flux said...

Jesus and Moses are brothers, and Shiva is the sister of Vishnu, lover of Buddha. Shiva was cheating on Vishnu with God and thereby had the Jesus/Moses twins. For this is written in the Book of Mormon, of course Joseph Smith being a direct descendent of Noah and Zues. Duh!

OilIsMastery said...

Tom,

"Pillars of heaven? Heaven needs to be held up? How did they know that?"

Good question. See here.

Tom Marking said...

@OIM "Good question."

So is it your contention that Job 26-11 is referring to the famous "Pillars of Creation" picture from the Hubble Space Telescope? And how do these pillars hold up the entire blue sky as seen by the ancient Hebrews and why would the ancients, even assuming they knew about the picture, imagine them to hold up the entire sky? That is such a weak argument, OIM, that I'm surprised that even you would throw that out there. What does Anaconda have to say about that one? Does Job 26-11 refer to the "Pillars of Creation"?

Anaconda said...

@ Tom Marking:

You ask: "What does Anaconda have to say about that one? Does Job 26-11 refer to the 'Pillars of Creation'?"

I have no idea. I seriously doubt that Job 26-11 is referring to the "Pillars of Creation".

I don't have the slightest idea what Job is referring to ["Job 26:11: "The pillars of heaven tremble and are astonished at his reproof."]. But if I was to guess, it is a metaphor suggesting God's disapproval can make Creation fearful and surprised in a metaphysical context.

In other words, God is responsible for Creation and his disapproval can shake the very foundations of Heaven and Earth causing humble trepidation and surprise in an abstract sense, rather than suggesting a specific object or phenomenon.

I suggest my guesses are in line with standard biblical interpretation, but if one wants to correct me, I meekly accept the "reproof" and submit to God's will.

Anaconda said...

ON THE OTHER HAND...

If you want me to explain the "Pillars of Creation" as presented in the Hubble photogrpah, it would be thus:

"[E]vaporating gaseous globules" are actually plasma being constricted via electromagnetic Z-pinches.

"[P]illars of molecular hydrogen gas and dust" are larger bodies of plasma that have not been constricted by electrical currents;

"The giant pillars are light years in length and are so dense that interior gas contracts gravitationally to form stars." No, electrical currents converge into filaments where giant z-pinches constrict plasma and neutral matter with gravity assisting towards the end of the process when the density does allow for the force of gravity to assist into stars.

"The pillars of creation were imaged recently by the orbiting Chandra X-ray Observatory, and it was found that most EGGS are not strong emitters of X-rays."

In plasma physics laboratories high energy z-pinches have been shown to be emitters of x-rays.

Near-space has been shown to be electrical as explained in NASA's "The Exploration of the Earth's Magnetosphere."

And interplanetary space has also been shown to be electrical in nauture as demonstrated by observation & measurement of Jupiter's electromagnetic fields.

Radio (detection of electromagnetic waves in the radio wavelength part of the spectrum) images of Jupiter demonstrate this conclusion.

So, if near-space is electromagnetic in nature and interplanetary space is electromagnetic in nature, is it an unreasonable jump to investigate the possibility that deep space structures are electromagnetic in nature?

Especially when it is known that electromagnetism is scalable.

Isn't it reasonable to take the known (near-space and interplanetary space) and offer hypothesis that builds on those known processes and phenomenon?

In fact, isn't it preferable to rely on 'known' processes and phenomenon and extrapolate that to unknown phenomenon, rather, than "inventing" unobserved processes to explain the unknown phenomenon?

Isn't that more faithful to the scientific method?

How about that, Tom Marking?

(Since you asked me a question and I answered your question, it seems fair that you would answer my question.)

...back to your regular programming...

Tom Marking said...

@Anaconda "I have no idea. I seriously doubt that Job 26-11 is referring to the "Pillars of Creation"."

Yes, thank you sir. I seriously doubt it also, but apparently OIM believes it.

"Evaporating gaseous globules are actually plasma being constricted via electromagnetic Z-pinches."

You are aware that astronomers can distinguish a body of plasma in space from neutral matter? They are called H II regions - for singly ionized hydrogen. The Orion Nebula is a prime example of a H II region. The ionization is caused by the intense ultraviolet radiation emitted by the young hot spectral class O and B stars which are born in such a nebula.

"No, electrical currents converge into filaments where giant z-pinches constrict plasma and neutral matter with gravity assisting towards the end of the process when the density does allow for the force of gravity to assist into stars."

Do you have any understanding of the physics of a z-pinch or is it just some nifty term you picked up from the thunderbolts web site?

http://plasma-gate.weizmann.ac.il/ZP/

"Typical densities and temperatures at the pinch core are 1.0E18-1.0E22 per cm^3 and 0.1-1 keV, respectively. At this stage the plasma becomes HIGHLY UNSTABLE, resulting in disassembly, expansion and cooling. The duration of the implosion process is typically between 100 ns to 1 s. Highly stripped ions are formed during the thermalization phase, and the plasma emits mostly in the x-ray regime."

@Anaconda "In plasma physics laboratories high energy z-pinches have been shown to be emitters of x-rays."

Yes, while the z-pinch lasts which is typically less than one second. Z-pinch was one of the first technologies tried for nuclear fusion reactors but it failed to contain the hot plasma which invariably finds a way to leak out of the system.

"So, if near-space is electromagnetic in nature and interplanetary space is electromagnetic in nature, is it an unreasonable jump to investigate the possibility that deep space structures are electromagnetic in nature?"

It all depends what you mean by "electromagnetic in nature". Even a wet tampon is electromagnetic in nature if you consider that it is composed of protons and electrons. You have to be more specific than that. Does it have a net electrical charge? What type of EM interaction does it have with other objects?

"Isn't it reasonable to take the known (near-space and interplanetary space) and offer hypothesis that builds on those known processes and phenomenon?"

Anaconda, you have proposed electrical arcs in the form of Birkeland currents stretching from planet to planet within our own solar system. Wouldn't it be better to actually show evidence for such filamentary currents in our own solar system before extending the theory to galaxies, quasars, etc.? What evidence is there that a Birkeland current has ever connected Earth to Mars, Mars to Jupiter, etc., etc.?

Quantum_Flux said...

Light Pillars

Anaconda said...

@ Tom Marking:

I appreciate your reasonable scepticism and it's up to me to provide authority for my position.

Tom Marking states: "Do you have any understanding of the physics of a z-pinch or is it just some nifty term you picked up from the thunderbolts web site?"

Yes, I do have an understanding of of the physics of a z-pinch.

The scientific evidence is clear that the z-pinch process exists in nature as well as the laboratory.

Remember, electromagnetism is scalable, and z-pinches are known to exist in space. "Pinches occur naturally in electrical discharges such as lightning bolts, the aurora, current sheets, and solar flares."

"They [z-pinch] have applications to particle beams including particle beam weapons, and astrophysics.

The scientific paper titled (abstract only), The role of particle beams and electrical currents in the plasma universe, by Anthony Peratt, NASA/STI Keywords: [...] plasma pinch [...].

Also, NASA reports of a "plasma bullet" in Earth's magnetotail, but likely it is a z-pinch causing an electrical discharge resulting in an accelerated pulse of electrons and ions.

Here is a schematic of the magnetic field closing together as in a z-pinch.

The URL you provide fails to mention scientifically known and documented naturally occuring z-pinch phenomenon, and, therefore, gives an incomplete picture of the z-pinch process.

The implication that z-pinches don't exist in nature or space does not square with the known scientific evidence.

Tom, you state: "The ionization is caused by the intense ultraviolet radiation emitted by the young hot spectral class O and B stars which are born in such a nebula."

That is a position held by a number of astronomers and it may be accurate as far as it goes, but fails to account for plasma's natural tendency to form electromagnetic 'double layers' which in turn are what constrict into z-pinches.

Your statement in no way contradicts the idea that I presented: ""Evaporating gaseous globules are actually plasma being constricted via electromagnetic Z-pinches."

See, here: "In space, these currents are called Birkeland Currents, in honor of the 19th century physicist who suggested their existence. In the laboratory, they are called Bennett-pinches, Z-pinches, or 'Zed' pinches. In 1934 W. H. Bennett discovered that streams of electrons flowing in the axial or Z-direction, self pinch from the magnetic field they generate around themselves."

Wikipedia's entry for nebula: "A nebula (from Latin: "cloud"; pl. nebulae or nebulæ, with ligature or nebulas) is an interstellar cloud of dust, hydrogen gas and PLASMA (emphasis added)."

Tom you quote a passage from the URL, but because it fails to address space z-pinches, it also fails to recognize that the duration is also scaled up, as well.

Tom Marking states: "It all depends what you mean by 'electromagnetic in nature'."

In this context and as demonstrated by the provided links to the Jupiter electromagnetism, it is clear we are talking about charge seperation.

Tom Marking states: "Anaconda, you have proposed electrical arcs in the form of Birkeland currents stretching from planet to planet within our own solar system."

That is beside the point isn't it? The fact is that electromagnetic forces have been scientifically observed & measured on an interplanetary basis between the Sun and the Earth and as the linked authority shows at the planet Jupiter.

Certainly, electromagnetic dynamics happen between the Sun and Jupiter and between Jupiter and its moon Io and the Sun and other planets.

Tom, are you denying that electromagnetic phenomenon happen at the interplanetary level?

NASA would disagree with you.

So, the question still stands: ""Isn't it reasonable to take the known (near-space and interplanetary space) and offer hypothesis that builds on those known processes and phenomenon?"

Tom Marking said...

@Anaconda "Yes, I do have an understanding of the physics of a z-pinch."

It's not clear that you do since later in your last post you make this statement (or quote from a link that does):

"In space, these currents are called Birkeland Currents, in honor of the 19th century physicist who suggested their existence. In the laboratory, they are called Bennett-pinches, Z-pinches, or 'Zed' pinches."

So you (or they) are equating Z-pinches with Birkeland currents. Remember what a Birkeland current is - it's a current that flows in the direction of the magnetic field lines. Your first link on Z-pinches says this:

"Along the axis of the plasma cylinder flows a current density J-z, resulting in a toroidal magnetίc field Β-phi"

The current and the magnetic field are at right angles in a Z-pinch. Ergo, a Z-pinch is NOT a Birkeland current.

"Tom, are you denying that electromagnetic phenomenon happen at the interplanetary level?"

No, I am not. All I'm saying is that you need to keep your various concepts straight - Birkeland currents, Z-pinches, etc. and apply them to cases where there is evidence they actually exist.

Anaconda said...

@ Tom Marking:

I appreciate your response because you apply reasonable scepticism based on your experience with electromagnetics, which does require me to "think through" the issues and clarify my thinking and expression in terms of writing and communication of ideas.

That is an important part of the scientific enterprise.

As I understand your comment, the important statement is thus:

"Along the axis of the plasma cylinder flows a current density J-z, resulting in a toroidal magnetίc field Β-phi"

Look at that sentence: "...the axis of the plasma cylinder..."

What is a Birkeland current?

A Birkland current is a plasma cylander in space. The walls of the plasma cylander (Birkeland current) are double layers. The force of the constricting magnetic field of the z-pinch is perpendicular to the flow along the plasma cylinder.

As the Birkeland current flows along a magnetic field line the constriction of the z-pinch is perpendicular to the mangetic field line.

Therefore, a z-pinch as part of a Birkeland current is not contradictory to the passage I linked to.

And I submit that Dr. Anthony Peratt and his colleagues at Los Alamos National Laboratory
understand the z-pinch mechanism, and since it is his Plasma Universe website that sponsors the above linked passage you dispute, I submit it is you who misunderstand the spatial relationships of the z-pinch and Birkeland currents and not him and his colleagues at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Anaconda said...

@ Tom Marking:

Take a look at the bottom of the home page for the Plasma Universe website.

See, "Our Sponsors and Associates:"

Department of Energy

National Science Foundation

Los Alamos National Laboratory

Plasma International

Dupont

Air Force Office of Scientific Research

IEEE (The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Nuclear And Plasma Sciences Society (association identified at upper left-hand corner of homepage website)

Tom, do you really think all those sponsoring organizations would allow a factual inaccuracy placed out on the internet on their behalf of a long standing nature?

Or is it possible you are wrong?

Quantum_Flux said...

What is a Birkeland current?

I think a Birkeland Current is a magnetic monopole. Perhaps Maxwell's equation about the non-divergence of a magnetic field is incorrect.

Quantum_Flux said...

I also contest the conservation of angular momentum in a photon. I think that the photon has an oscillating angular momentum, consistant with Maxwell's Equations of the Curl's of the E and B fields being proportional to the time rates of changes of the B and E fields, respectively.

Quantum_Flux said...

That also would explain the symmetry breaking that occurs in black holes and at the recurrent stages of the Big Bang (gaining universal entropy at each recuring stage).

Tom Marking said...

@Anaconda "I submit it is you who misunderstand the spatial relationships of the z-pinch and Birkeland currents and not him and his colleagues at Los Alamos National Laboratory."

It's a matter of definition. I think the plasma universe web site actually has 2 definitions for Birkeland current:

http://www.plasma-universe.com/index.php/Birkeland_current

"A Birkeland current generally refers to any electric current in a space plasma, but more specifically when charged particles in the current follow magnetic field lines."

So it can be 1.) any electric current through a space plasma, or 2.) a current that follows the magnetic field line

Actually, I believe this is probably the source of some of our disagreements on the Bad Astronomy web site also. I was using definition 2 and you were using definition 1.

If a Birkeland current is any electric current flowing through a plasma then of course a Z-pinch is a Birkeland current. But if a Birkeland current is only an electric current flowing parallel to a magnetic field line then I submit to you, based on the diagrams you linked to, that a Z-pinch is not a Birkeland current. I'm not sure which definition Peratt was using, probably #1.

Anaconda said...

@ Tom Marking:

I appreciate your further discussion. You may well be right about the reason for the disagreements.

Let me pose a question: Does a Birkeland current generate its own magnetic field?

If so, in what spatial relationship would the Birkeland current be in regards to its own generated magnetic field?

Tom Marking said...

@Anaconda "Let me pose a question: Does a Birkeland current generate its own magnetic field? If so, in what spatial relationship would the Birkeland current be in regards to its own generated magnetic field?"

According to Ampere's Law the magnetic field generated by a current is at right angles to the current (and forms a circle in a plane perpendicular to the direction of the current):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ampere%27s_Law

Thus, if a Birkeland current is aligned with a magnetic field then it cannot be the magnetic field it generates which is always at a right angle. Thus, it must be some pre-existing magnetic field the Birkeland current is aligning itself to - of course, this is using definition #2 for Birkeland currents.

Quantum_Flux said...

Thus, it must be some pre-existing magnetic field the Birkeland current is aligning itself to

Or a voltage potential between the sun and a planet, the plasma acting as a wire as in a lightning bolt. Unrelatedly, the sun magnetizes the Earth's magnetic field over time, much like a soft-magnetic core hard drive is magnetized for purposes of memory storage.