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“Thou shalt have no other god before me.”  (Exodus 20:3 KJV)

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Neutrinos Faster Than Light?

September 25, 2011

A pillar of physics — that nothing can go faster than the speed of light — appears to be smashed by an oddball subatomic particle that has apparently made a giant end run around Albert Einstein's theories. from Science on msnbc.com.

You know - E=MC² and all that?
If you don't know - that's OK - I'm not going to get into it here.
The key is - it's something that's so ingrained into everything related to "modern" physics - it's like Einstein was "god".

For instance - check out these quotes from a related article - Challenging Einstein is usually a losing venture:

"It's dangerous to lay odds against Einstein," said Rob Plunkett, a physicist at the Fermilab near Chicago who has tried similar speed-of-light experiments and will now try to test the new findings.

Columbia University physicist Brian Greene said he would "bet just about everything I hold dear that this won't hold up to scrutiny."

Physicists on the team said they were as surprised as their skeptics about the results, which appear to violate the laws of nature as we know them.

The elegance of Einstein's theory and its proven track record are why nearly every one of the more than a dozen physicists contacted by The Associated Press about the new findings has been cautious, skeptical or downright disbelieving.


Amazing stuff isn't it?

No - not anything about how smart Einstein was -
and not anything about E=MC² -
not anything about science at all.

The amazing part to me is the devotion to Einstein's theory - in effect to Einstein.

Think devotion is too strong a word - check out this quote from the original article:

He cautioned that the neutrino researchers would have to explain why similar results weren't detected before.
"This would be such a sensational discovery if it were true that one has to treat it extremely carefully," said Ellis.

So even if the results are confirmed - they still have to explain why it's never been found before? Normally - there would just be mention of better instruments - smaller margins of error achieved with those better instruments - adding knowledge onto what was already know to be true - you just had to confirm what was done in the experiment. But not this one - not these people - they have to explain what was wrong with everything done before them.

And then - if they manage to clear that huge hurdle - it still has to be treated extremely carefully.

Why?

Things have happened before that turned current "knowledge" on its head - and it didn't have to be treated all that carefully.

Look at Darwin - and his theory of evolution. That's got so many holes in it - and many, many scientists don't believe in it any more - but we still teach it in schools. It wasn't treated all that carefully.


So - why is this one such a big deal?
Why does it have to be treated extremely carefully?


Well - for the answer to that, let's look at one other scientific fact / theory - this one about the origin of the universe. Was it a big bang? Did everything just randomly happen? And then did Darwin's Origin of Species just fit in with all the randomness and things just happening?

Are you and I just random things that happened?
No real past - because we just popped up randomly - we would have been a fish except for some mistake of nature that happened who knows how many years ago? And of course - after we die - there's nothing to look forward to - we'll just become food for the next fish / creature / whatever happens to come along in the future by way of some other mistake of nature.

How pointless and depressing is that?

To be honest - I don't know how anyone could actually want to believe that's true.

To take it one step further - how can someone with the apparent intelligence and desire to pursue a college degree and study all of this want it to be true?

It's just mind blowing.

How many people really want life to be that pointless?



But - if we look at the way many things in science are treated by so many people - that's exactly what they are doing - using it to prove that life is totally random - pointless - depressing.

Things came to be - because some events happened - for no real reason - things just "happened".

Of course - in the midst of all this randomness - all this pointless activity - all these things just happening - there are very strict laws - laws of nature and rules of science.


Say what?


Randomness - events just taking place for no reason - human coming into existence by way of a genetic mistake - and there are laws of nature and rules for science?


And - some of these laws are so sacrosanct that this kind of response is made when one of them seems to be on the verge of being proven wrong?


Sure - why not?

It makes sense, actually.


Look at these things - evolution - the big bang - the speed of light being an absolute barrier.

They do have something in common.


From a certain point of view - they can be used to say that God doesn't exist.

From a different point of view - they can be used to say that God must exist.


I think that the real reason for the strength of the feeling has more to do with the side of the fence one is on. For those that want to say God doesn't exist - there's a lot at stake. The nice little "laws" that have been created out of theories (some of which don't even stand up to close scrutiny) and put a nice little box around everything we know - claim that we know all there is to know - and then say there can't be a "god" - because nothing else is needed beyond us.

For others of us - these same scientific findings can be used to show the exact opposite. That everything doesn't fit in a neat little box. We don't come close to knowing everything there is to know. That there must be a God - because all of this can't be random - can't be uncontrolled - and can't be explained by what we know.


I truly believe that - as C. S. Lewis says in The Screwtape Letters - (from the devil's point of view -

Above all, do not attempt to use science (I mean, the real sciences) as a defence against Christianity. They will positively encourage him to think about realities he can’t touch and see. There have been sad cases among the modern physicists. If he must dabble in science, keep him on economics and sociology; don’t let him get away from that invaluable ‘real life’. But the best of all is to let him read no science but to give him a grand general idea that he knows it all and that everything he happens to have picked up in casual talk and reading is ‘the results of modern investigation’.

In other words - from the Christian point of view -

Above all, do use science (I mean, the real sciences) as a defence for Christianity. They will positively encourage him to think about realities he can’t touch and see. There have been happy cases among the modern physicists. But the best of all is to let him read enough science but to give him the realization that he doesn't know it all and that there are many things that humans cannot know, because they aren't God.'

So - did they really find particles that moved faster than the speed of light?

Who knows? Maybe yes - maybe no.

The key isn't whether it's true.

The key is why some would fight so hard to want it to not be true.

Why don't they want something to exist that would throw current "knowledge" to the wind?


Maybe - it's because they don't want to have to look at the implications of what that means.

Maybe - it's because they don't want to have to admit that they not only don't know everything - but even what they were sure they knew was wrong all along.

Maybe - it's because in the end - they don't want to admit that the real laws of the universe - of nature - of everything - were created by the One who first said -

Let there be light.


Want to check it out?

Start here - at the beginning.