# Curvature of light and its effect on reality

• Jeremy
In summary, the conversation discusses a concept mentioned by the teacher about the modification of reality due to relativity. The teacher suggests that the perception of light can differ based on an individual's position, leading to a different reality. However, this idea is not supported by scientific principles and could potentially be a misinterpretation of gravitational lensing. The conversation also mentions a philosophical subject being studied and the hesitation to tell the teacher they are wrong.
Jeremy
Today my teacher mentioned a past article in scientific american that dealt with the modification of reality due to relativity.

According to her (and i am not sure this is true) light can be perceived in different places according to the position of different people. For instance, if i am standing in the center of a football field and see a beam of light hit the scoreboard, a person standing in an endzone might see that same beam of light hitting a tree nearby. from this, she suggested that the two people would be perceiving a different reality, and she suggested we apply the idea to a philosophical subject we were studying.

has anyone heard of anything like this? i don't want to tell my teacher she is dead wrong, so similar things would also be welcomed.

thanks

Perhaps your teacher misinterpreted gravitational lensing. Gravitational lensing is an effect in general relativity where the gravity of a body causes light to take a curved path. It is true that if you look at distant stars and there is a body of large density between you and the distant star (such as a black hole or the Sun) then you could see the distant stars in a place where they really aren't. This is due to the fact that the light traveling from the star will curve around the Sun, so you'll see it in a different place than it actually is. This doesn't represent a change in reality though. In reality, the star is still where it is, no matter who observes it. It's the same idea as normal lenses or mirrors. If you look at an object in a mirror, the light from that object bounces off the mirror and comes to your eyes, so you see the object in a place where it really isn't. That doesn't mean that there's some sort of change in reality. In reality the object exists in one place, but because you have a mirror you can see it in two places.

For instance, if i am standing in the center of a football field and see a beam of light hit the scoreboard, a person standing in an endzone might see that same beam of light hitting a tree nearby.

The article might have been talking about gravitational lensing, but that couldn't be percived on Earth like that, at least. Do you have a link to the article by any chance?

i don't want to tell my teacher she is dead wrong, so similar things would also be welcomed.
I know how you feel. I got into arguments with my philosophy teacher about physics (usually GR) several times.

EDIT: Not fast enough...

Last edited:
Unfortunately, I don't have the article. However, thank you for helping with what you could. I thought the argument seemed a bit illogical.

## 1. What is the curvature of light?

The curvature of light refers to the bending of light rays as they pass through a medium with varying density. This is due to the change in the speed of light as it moves from one medium to another.

## 2. How does the curvature of light affect our perception of reality?

The curvature of light can distort our perception of reality by causing objects to appear closer or further away than they actually are. This is particularly evident in optical illusions, where the bending of light can create illusions of size, shape, or distance.

## 3. What causes the curvature of light?

The curvature of light is caused by the interaction of light with the particles in a medium. As light travels through a medium, such as air or water, it is constantly interacting with the particles, causing it to bend.

## 4. Can the curvature of light be measured?

Yes, the curvature of light can be measured using various instruments and techniques, such as refractometers and interferometers. These measurements can then be used to calculate the refractive index of a given medium.

## 5. Are there any practical applications of understanding the curvature of light?

Yes, understanding the curvature of light is crucial in fields such as optics, astronomy, and photography. It also plays a role in the development of technologies such as lenses, telescopes, and cameras.

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