Are dimensions real?

  • #1
1
0
I wonder if dimensions of space are real things, or just a way that humans describe space, rather like 'good' and 'evil' are just ways that humans describe behaviour, but good and evil are not themselves real. So just as good and evil are not real, perhaps dimensions are not real, and space simply is what it is. So talk of nine space dimensions, like in string theory, would just be nonsense.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
13,561
10,666
I'm afraid we came to the conclusion that such questions, which are by tendency of philosophical nature, lead nowhere and thus decided to not allow them (see our guidelines). Whether something is real is clearly a matter of philosophy and the least of us have a philosophical expertise to debate them on the scientific level we want to achieve. In physics we calculate with the mathematical framework which describes the experiments, regardless whether they are in any philosophical sense real or not. A particle is not really a wave, but wave functions describe them well. In other models we need to consider phase spaces of higher dimension than three or four in general relativity. So the restriction to length, width, height is given by our general perception of what we call reality, and doesn't reflect what physicists are doing. Thus it is a purely philosophical question. I assume there are already dozens of philosophical papers which try to deal with the concept of reality. It is not a physical question. Physicists consider as many dimensions as are needed to model and predict the outcome of their experiments. E.g. in quantum field theory there are more than just three dimensions.

This thread is closed.
 

Related Threads on Are dimensions real?

  • Last Post
Replies
5
Views
3K
  • Last Post
Replies
1
Views
1K
  • Last Post
2
Replies
42
Views
7K
  • Last Post
Replies
12
Views
18K
Replies
7
Views
2K
Replies
14
Views
6K
Replies
10
Views
3K
  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
691
  • Last Post
Replies
5
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
4
Views
842
Top