The Enigma Of The Universe : (C) Summary

Published: 03.10.2014
Updated: 03.10.2014

Inquisitive mind of man has persistently been endeavouring to solve the first aspect of the enigma of the universe, viz., "What is the universe?" In this chapter, we have studied the views of various western philosophers starting from the ancient Greek philosophers to the modern philosophers as well as scientists from Newton to Einstein and Heisenberg. We may summarize our discussion by concluding that the dilemma of realism and idealism has not only perplexed the philosophers but also divided the scientists into several groups. The idealists consider the universe as a subjective reality, whereas the realists propound it as the objective reality.

The space and time also present a mystery. Some conceive of space as a 'plenum', whereas others believe in the possibility of 'vacuum'; some try to prove the existence of 'absolute space', whereas others accept the existence of relative space; some contend that space is an objective reality, whereas others assert that it is a subjective reality. Similar dissensions exist regarding the reality of time.

In the field of science, Newton conceived of space and time as absolute and independent entities. The scientists assumed the existence of ether to fit in the Newtonian concepts, but later on the theory of relativity abandoned the hypothetical ether and established the existence of relative space and time. Einstein's theory of relativity brought a revolution in the field of physics The concepts such as the four-dimensional continuum of 'space and time', 'the relatedness of space with time due to the finite velocity of light', 'the effect of motion on the dimensions of space and time', have resulted from the special theory of relativity, and those of 'curvature of space owing to the mass of material bodies', 'non-Euclidean properties space', 'equality of gravitation and inertia', etc. are the consequences of the general theory of relativity. Nevertheless, the reality of space and time remains enigmatic in the field of science.

Sources
Title: The Enigma Of The Universe Publisher: JVB University Ladnun English Edition: 2010 HN4U Online Edition: 2014

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  1. Einstein
  2. Ether
  3. Heisenberg
  4. Newton
  5. Science
  6. Space
  7. The Enigma Of The Universe
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