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Maui
#168
Dec19-11, 03:36 PM
P: 724
Quote Quote by apeiron View Post
Fields are just another modelling concept. They have the advantage in that they are both local and global, so do offer a holistic approach.

They are the only consistent model of reality there is.



A field can define a space by filling it, while locally specifying its material content. Local particles can be described as excitations and so given a contextual definition. Etc.


No, a field doesn't fill space, space is relative and e.g. the gravitational field defines space-time as per GR. Fields define and make up spacetime


So if reality is holistic and systematic in its causality, we should expect a field ontology to be good at capturing that essential local~global organisation.

My long standing gripe with causality has always been that it's a secondary(derivative) concept(like matter, space and time). You are looking for the organizing principles where they don't exist.


Of course, like any analogy, there are then shortcomings. Fields have no memory, no persistence. All is flux. So it is hard to represent history or gradients.

Memory is a secondary, emergent concept as well(a property of the field?). Classical realism of objects as a fundamental characteristic of reality has been dead for a while.


And also, the essence of a "field" in any of these descriptions is that it preserves locality. Whereas QM creates a problem in that regard.
QFT doesn't pressupose realism, so no problem in that respect with QM.