Tag Archive: dimensions

Observation of the Dimensions


We have established the concept of four dimensions and how we interact with them on a daily basis. Now to understand how we are able to observe the other dimensions we will need to dig a bit deeper into things. The main concept of observing the dimensions is that they can only be observed when we do so from an additional dimension.

What Can We See?


To begin we’ll start with the idea of the zeroth dimension or what comes before a line. So this would be a simple point as is taught in geometry. A single point with no width or length or height. From that single point because nothing else exists, we cannot observe anything at all. When we add another point to create a line now we can see the preceding dimension which was the single point. If you were on that line traveling either forward or backwards you’ll only be able to see a single point. Much like walking through a tunnel in the dark with only the entrance and exit visible. While you are moving along a line all you see is the point of light at the end of the tunnel.

Imagine a worm stuck in a straight tube which will represent our line. The worm is able to move straight along the tube, but cannot turn in any other direction because the other directions do not exist. It cannot turn nor move up or down along this tube, but only has the option of moving along the existing line. From the viewpoint of this poor earthworm the only thing that is visible is a single point. If you’re curious about what this may look like you can just close one eye and take a look through a straw at something of solid color. The line exists and the earthworm exists within that dimension but is only able to comprehend the previous dimension.

To see the first dimensional line our poor earthworm is traversing we’ll place the tube on the two-dimensional surface of a piece of paper and an ant on the piece of paper to act as our observer. The ant is not trapped in a single dimension as it is able to walk forwards, backwards and side to side so has the freedom to use both dimensions, but cannot go up nor down. Now the ant is in the second dimension and able to see the line not as a single point, but as what it is a line of the first dimension. Once the earthworm finishes his leisurely trip down the tube it too can realize that he did not exist in a single dimension, although that was all it could see but existed in at least two dimensions as it was able to travel along the tube.

So the ant and earthworm are able to see far across their two dimensional space, but again limited to what is visible which is the line of the horizon. No matter which direction they turn or go all that they can observe is the first dimension of a line which would be the horizon.

Now we can add a third dimension to the equation by adding ourselves to this imaginary scene. We stand above the ant and caterpillar in the third dimension and can see the different directions that they can go. Whether it is forwards or backwards, left or right or in circles both creatures are free to move in two dimensional space, but we are the only ones who are able to see all of the possibilities available to them as the only thing observable for them is a line. For the ant and the caterpillar their vision is strictly limited to the first dimension.

We readily accept that we and everything around us exists in three dimensional space, but how do we observe this? Again, if we existed only in three dimensional space while we would be able to interact with it, we would not be able to observe it just as the caterpillar is one dimensional space was only able to observe the preceding point of the zeroth dimension and the ant in two dimensional space was only able to observe the first dimension of a line. We are three dimensional beings are limited to observing only two dimensions.

What We See Without Time

Without time we can only everything that we see frozen in a moment like a photograph or pausing a video is what we see at that single moment in time. In that aspect everything we see is two dimensional as it requires movement or time in order to perceive things in depth (3D). We can look at the buildings above which as actually false fronts typically used in movies and TV shows. They are two dimensional images that fool us into thinking that they are three dimensional. Mainly our brains assume that there is a side and back like a real building, but if we actually took time to move around those building we would realize that there is no depth.  Normally with most objects we look at them assuming that they are three-dimensional, but our minds can easily be fooled and the objects can only be proven to be three dimensional by moving around them.

The only way to see the back of the building or the top of the building would be to move to a different viewpoint. That movement is time and the fourth dimension. Even our basic idea of depth perception is based on the use of the fourth dimension of time. Visual information comes into both our eyes at different times and our brain is then able to compute the differences to add depth to what we see. The same thing is done with 3D cameras where two images are overlapped to give a sense of depth instead of just a vertical and horizontal image.

So by existing in time we are now able to observe all three dimensions. The basic concept is that if we are able to observe something than we must exist in a higher dimension which we are able to interact with even if it is in a single direction much like the caterpillar in the tube. To be able to see the first dimension you need to be in the second, to see the second you need to be in the third and finally to see the third you need to be in the fourth dimension and so forth.

Since our minds are able to perceive the passage of time and understand the difference between the past, present and the future we currently are able to observe and understand the first four dimensions, but in order to do so we exist on the dimension above which would be considered the fifth dimension. While most physicists do agree that there are higher dimensions that the four that we perceive their is disagreement on what those additional dimensions are. We won’t go into the nuances of quantum theory and string theory to discuss the dimensions as there has been no substantiated proof to prove one or the other. In the end though the existence of additional dimensions is pretty much agreed upon even though it doesn’t make sense to most of us in our everyday lives, however using the logic of the first three dimensions and how they are observed we can accept that we not only exist in the spacial three dimensions that we accept as everyday fact, and not only the fourth dimension of time moving forward linearly, but that we exist in at least the fifth dimension.



Time (part 2)



In the first post on time we pictured time as a series of rooms, one after the other connected by doors. As you walk into a new room the door behind you is locked forever in the past and the future awaits through the next doorway. Now imagine that instead of one exit out of the room or present that there are multiple doorways for you to choose from. Each door leading to a new room again filled with more doors, branching constantly in new directions with new paths to choose from. Now we have options to choose from on which door to take, which room to go into. Instead of being forced along a singular path we have the power of choice. Instead of a singular route through the doors there are always different paths and directions that one can choose to move in with the only exception being the door you entered through. As before in the idea of B-series time all of the rooms already exist and it is up to you to decide which room you end up in.


This idea of multiple rooms simply waiting for you to choose and enter is similar to the idea one of the possibilities of a multiverse, the idea that every branching path of your life exists and you yourself are just living one of those versions. In the many-worlds interpretation of the multivers there are multiple versions of you reading this just as you yourself are and there are nearly other versions of you doing different things. Even the most outlandish acts are being done by some of your doppelgangers, some are robbing banks and committing crimes while others are the President, inventors, celebrities, etc. The choices that they made in their life as well as the circumstances around them allowed them to be something, someone else entirely. The differences can be as small as whether you brushed your teeth this morning or not to even something as different as whether you are still alive or not. Depending on what choices you made you are on a different branch of your life. Small decisions become major ones as each one compounds on one another creating a very different you.

“Anything can happen now that we’ve slid over this bridge, anything at all…”
― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

The idea of the multiverse is pleasing to most people as it creates a version of us with no regrets. A version of us that made the ‘right’ choices in life and is happier than we are with our present version. Unfortunately no matter how similar those other versions of us are, they are not us as the experiences and choices that they have and made, made them different from us. They do not share the same memories and thoughts as we do. So while the idea of a ‘perfect’ version of us is pleasant we are still here, living our own unique lives.

We are in a single room at any given moment and the other versions of us are in different rooms as they chose different doors to go through. We do however have choices in front of us even though there are none behind. Which door will we choose to step through which future shall we make? Most of us lead our lives opening the closest door or the easiest one to step through, the path of least resistance and struggle. We are akin to a leaf floating down the river of time not knowing which direction it flows, where it turns and branches off, but like that floating on a river we can paddle and swim against the current to go where we want to go. If the idea of multiple worlds or universes is true than not only are multiple instances of the past and present true, but also the future. While we may not be where we want to be in our lives in the present the options are all there in the future not as maybes or possibilities but as actual real occurrences that you only need to reach. Not the President yet in this version of reality? It doesn’t matter as there is a future version with you as the starting point who becomes President. The real difference in making an effort is knowing whether or not you will succeed.

“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

In the idea of the future already existing and an almost infinite number of possibilities already existing all it takes is finding the correct doors to walk through. We can however make a difference in the course of our lives. Each new door and room doesn’t have to be a complete mystery. There is a pattern, if you look hard enough and we can map a way to rooms we would like to be in. The rooms that we pass through might not be pleasant and some doorways are harder to enter than others, yet with perseverance we can reach the final destination of our choice.




Imagine walking through an endless series of rooms. As soon as you step through a doorway the door is forever locked behind you. There is however a new door that opens up in front of you that takes you to the next room. Each room is different, some are bedrooms, others offices, kitchens, storerooms and so on. Moving through each room we can experience it while we are there, but once we leave it is only a memory never again accessible physically to us. As we reach the next door we are unaware to what room it will lead to just as the future is unknown to us.

Everybody understands time in their everyday lives and we all quantify time into set agreed upon standards such as second, minute and hour and also into longer periods such as day, year, century, etc. Much like how other things are measured such as distance, volume or weight we agree upon a quantifiable standard for time. Most of us also know that time is also something that we feel progress at different speeds depending on the individual or situation. Some moments seem to drag on for an eternity while in other circumstances they can seem to flash by in an instant. Time while having a measurable standard is also subjectively felt by the individual.

In general though everyone agrees that time flows in one direction, the arrow of time moving from the past through the present into the future. The past is already completed and done with and the present is where we currently are at any given time and the future is still an unknown with a multitude of possibilities. Things such as chance and circumstance can come into play making the future harder and harder to predict the further along we think about it.

Much like the first dimension of a simple line, we view time in the same manner. As we move through that line we can only see the single point that is the now or present. Even the past second that has passed us by cannot be relived in the same manner. As time flows we are pulled along. From one room to the next and the next the flow of time never ceases and never reverses, it simply moves forward into eternity.

This is the most accepted view of time, that time is a single fixed point moving along a singular dimension, that the past and future does not exist and only the present does. Commonly known as presentism in philosophy and the A-series of time in physics. The main issue that arises from the idea of the A-series is when relativity comes into play. Two objects moving at different speeds would be in different ‘presents’ as time would move differently for them. So what happens now for both objects could be very different. The present for one could be either the past or future for the other depending on speed.

“Time is an illusion.”
― Albert Einstein

The B-series of time points to the idea that there is no past, present or future. That all of time already exists. Much like the rooms, each location, each moment is already there and all we need to do is move forward to the next one.

The idea of time as tenseless, without the idea of past, present and future has been gaining some traction in the physics community as it tends to solve some of the issues that occur when using the A-series model.

When it comes to philosophy and religion the ideas of destiny, fate, predestination and so forth all fall within the ideas of B-series time. That the next room you you enter is already there and so is the next and next and all you need to do is reach the next room. In A-series of time the next room does not exist until you open the door and the past room ceases to exist once you close the door.

In either case whether you believe in the A-series or B-series everyone recognizes that we are currently in the present so make the best of it.



The Four Dimensions


Before we proceed we need to establish a foundation on where these thoughts lead. We will do a brief overview of the three dimensions that are readily accepted by everyone mainly because these are three dimensions that we see and experience in the world around us at all times.

The first dimension is simply a line from two points in space. For anything that can comprehend this line then they can traverse it from point to point. However, if the limit of their comprehension and understanding is only this line, then they are stuck in the first dimension.

Imagine a caterpillar crawling through a straw. They only have the option of moving either forward or backward in the straw and are stuck in a one dimensional space without the option of moving on a different plane.

The second dimension is the addition of another line that crosses the first. Now there are more options in directions that are available. If we imagine both lines continuing without end and the idea that more lines can freely cross these lines then we now have the second dimension.

So the caterpillar in the straw has come out the end and is now on a sheet of paper now it has the option of moving in two dimensions. It can take turns and even walk in a circle, but still lacks the option of moving up or down. It is unable to jump or fly so the third dimension does not exist for the caterpillar. If a bird flies over the caterpillar the caterpillar is unaware of the existence of the bird as it cannot be observed. So life in two dimensions allows movement forwards, backwards, side to side, diagonally, etc. but does not allow any vertical movement.

The third dimension adds the vertical axis and now the option of going up and down suddenly exists. So the caterpillar bored with two dimensional life finally decides to build it’s cocoon and metamorph into a butterfly. With the recent addition of some wings now the butterfly is able to experience all three spatial dimensions. The butterfly has all of the options before of moving forwards, back, etc. and now can fly up and down as it pleases.

We see and experience existence in the three spatial dimensions so it is fairly simple for us to comprehend and understand. We enjoy freedom of movement in all three dimensions.

The next dimension is also one that most of us are able to comprehend without too much difficulty. That is the of time. We experience time flowing in one direction much like the caterpillar experienced the first dimension by walking along the tightrope. Without the fourth dimension then everything would simply stand frozen eternally in time.

Without time, even with three other dimensions we would be forever stuck on a single point unable to move from place to place. An easy way to comprehend the usage of four dimensions would simply be to arrange a meeting with someone at the Observation deck at the Empire State building.

The first step would be to establish the location in two dimensions. So we have the address as 350 5th Avenue. The 350 establishes one dimension while 5th Avenue now establishes the second. For the third dimension it is the Observation deck located on the 102nd floor. The 102nd floor now gives us the third dimensional coordinate for the meeting.

So with three dimensions we are able to establish a location or place to meet, but still lack one final bit of information to make such a meeting possible which is the time of the meeting. By establishing the fourth dimension of when to meet, such as noon on the first of March, 2024 we now have all of the information that makes such a meeting possible.

So we can easily establish that we live and experience at least four different dimensions in our everyday lives. We interact with three dimensional objects and live in a three dimensional world and traverse it through the fourth dimension of time.

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