What exactly is nothing?

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May 23, 2021
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Its really hard to me to even try to define nothing. Its like if someone walked into an empty room and said nothing is there but in reality there is space there which is something. So my question is what would true nothing be like? a place without space or matter?
 
Mar 15, 2021
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Zero (0), but it does not exist, if that helps. :eek:)
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"whoop·sie-dai·sy| ˈwo͞opsēˌdāzē, ˈwo͝opsēˌdāzē | exclamation used to express encouragement to a child who has fallen or is being lifted."
Do you drop many Doc?
 
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Mar 15, 2021
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Yes it does. So does that mean you believe the universe is infinite?.
I believe in semantics, that's why my reply was a joke. Your handle caught me eye because I'm 68, in a nursing home and madly in love with a nurse half my age. That's the oldest mental illness on this planet. I sometimes believe what I see in person but I'm old and have learned I really can't trust my memory. I've followed some Leonard Shlain writings and videos about the left/right brain dichotomy.
As for your original question, I just saw one of quite a few Youtube videos with Elon Musk talking about how we might be in a simulation now. Could there be nothing in a simulation? Even if "This is all in my mind" that implies a physical brain, some kind of neural pathways or a computer, which is physical. My latest favorite vocabulary word is ubiety, but that refers to a place in physical space. Humans are about things and it's hard to imagine a world without any. Be well and keep your questions "deep", Doc.
 
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May 23, 2021
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@Catastrophe
What is a place without space or matter? I mean space only means an area that can be occupied right?. In your opinion if there exists a place without space how would it in theory look like? Like do we reach an end of space and then just a wall?
 
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May 23, 2021
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@TetrahemiconDon
Are you referring to a sort of matrix? and yes I have had some serious deep thoughts. Have you considered the fact that our universe is possibly just a atom within another being and that, that beings is in a universe that is also just an atom within another universe and it just goes on infinitely?
 

Catastrophe

The devil is in the detail
Feb 18, 2020
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Where is the end of a circle? Where does it start or end?
Where is the end to the surface of a sphere? Where does it stop?
Just go up a dimension. Go back to the surface of the sphere. If you lived "on that surface" without any means of sensing up or down, it would be like the circle. No place where you can define a beginning or end. It just appears to be endless. Go up a dimension and you can see the radius of the circle and the space around it. That is the part that we cannot see.

Cat :)
 
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May 23, 2021
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@Catastrophe
The end of a circle is the edge but what is on the other side of the circle past the edge. Same as the sphere which is a better way of thinking since we can move through space on all axis. Dimensions is an interesting idea but personally is something I do not believe. The circle theory would have a beginning and end if you decide where to begin and move in a straight line. Lets say you decide to begin in the middle and move straight eventually you will hit an edge. But in the universe to imagine an edge would mean to think that something stops you from moving forward past it and that seems hard to believe.
 
Apr 19, 2021
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@DrWhoopsyDaisy

"Nothing" is theoretical, there is no proof nothing exists.

I personally don't believe it exists because if it does then it's no longer nothing.
The trick with theory of nothing is you have to name it somehow to define other theories that depend on it, but talking about nothing on it's own is meaningless.

If you can name "nothing" then it has a name and is no longer "nothing" because it has a name, but we still need to know what are we talking about so there is theory of nothing and "nothing" just for our information.

Trying to imagine "nothing" is likely out of human capability, because human imagination requires senses like vision, hearing and smell; none of which can help to depict nothing.

The closest you can get is to close yourself into a dark and silent room and doing nothing, and it would still be hard to think about nothing.

So I think the best way to imagine nothing is just forget about it and get over it, because there it nothing to think about if you understand what I mean?
 
May 23, 2021
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@spacedweller
I do understand what you mean and I agree with you that nothing can exist. Using the word to describe a basic idea like there is nothing to think about or there is nothing in the room just simplifies and kind of dumbs down language. "the train is empty" and "There is nothing in the train" one can be seen as the is nobody in the train as the other can mean that the train is hollowed out. By the way, what is your view on space/time. Do you believe that either can be altered. I personally do not believe it can. I hear a lot of idealists talk about blackholes warping space or the possibility of folding it or warping time due to either moving at certain speeds or being near certain gravitational pulls. Honestly though it doesn't make any sense to me.
 
Apr 19, 2021
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By the way, what is your view on space/time. Do you believe that either can be altered.
Mathematically or in theory yes, it can, but in practice it may be possible sometime in the future with additional research and materials.

As for nothing, it's so simple concept, but impossible to create in a lab.
 
@voidpotentialenergy
Can you explain what quanta orbits are? Sorry I do not know what that is.
A quanta orbit is the set location an electron orbits a neutron/proton in an atom.
It is either in location A or B or C etc but can never exist between those orbits.
When an atom decays the electron is instantly in the next set orbit and no partial move happens. (quantum leap)
Orbit, nothing, orbit, nothing etc.

Pretty solid proof that nothing isn't just an imaginary item in the universe but a part of reality with properties.
In fact 99.999+ of the universe is nothing.
JMO
 
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Mathematically or in theory yes, it can, but in practice it may be possible sometime in the future with additional research and materials.

As for nothing, it's so simple concept, but impossible to create in a lab.
A science team actually did create nothing, it had very weird properties and fluctuation filled it in very fast.
That was the paper that gave me some solid idea that nothing really exists and had properties and probably was the key to creating everything.

Nothing spawns fluctuation, fluctuation creates particles, fluctuation balances energy and conservation of energy is set so no more creation or destruction of energy.
Wish i could find that paper online.
 
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Catastrophe

The devil is in the detail
Feb 18, 2020
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DrWD,
Rather than go through it all again, I refer you to the posts where I have described the flatlander analogy. This will help you over your difficulties in understanding a circle and a sphere. See Edgeless Universe Post #46 on.

As far as "nothing" is concerned I suggest a reductio ad absurdum argument, which might go like this.:
Suppose nothing consists of or contains something.
Whatever nothing consists of or contains, remove it all.
But you find nothing to remove, therefore "nothing" contained nothing in the first place, and the supposition that "nothing" consisted of or contained something was absurd.
Therefore "nothing", as you might have assumed from its definition, consists of or contains nothing.

Cat :)
 

Catastrophe

The devil is in the detail
Feb 18, 2020
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DrWD
"Using the word to describe a basic idea like there is nothing to think about or there is nothing in the room just simplifies and kind of dumbs down language."

You are correct. If you refer to "Science and Sanity" by Korzybski, you will find his best known idea is "the map is not the territory".

You have hit it precisely with "dumbs down language". "nothing" is just a word. It IS not anything at all to try to locate or grab hold of. All this confusion about "nothing" being or containing anything is simply playing around with a collection of letters. "nothing" is only what we think of it ourselves, so we are bound to have differences. There has to be a word (other than vacuum) to describe "a lack of anything". That word has to cover a range of situations, some of which have been mentioned above. e.g., ""the train is empty" and "There is nothing in the train" one can be seen as the is nobody in the train as the other can mean that the train is hollowed out."

Just treat "nothing" as a word with various common meanings, and not something about which to hold a philosophical discussion. The map is not the territory. The word has common meanings none of which refer to any kind of underlying reality. That is my advice.


Cat :)

P.S. I mentioned vacuum. We are unable to produce a total vacuum. Even space contains iirc about ten atoms per cubic metre. There is no way currently that we can better this. So there is not even any appreciable gas in a vacuum. You cannot get hold of a vacuum and move it around. You can transfer it by connecting it to something, but then you destroy the vacuum by introducing new atoms/molecules from the volume whose pressure you wish to reduce.
 
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Catastrophe

The devil is in the detail
Feb 18, 2020
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VPE, "In fact 99.999+ of the universe is nothing."

Sorry, 99.999+ of the Universe contains several atoms per cubic metre.

Cat :)

Outer space is not completely empty—it is a hard vacuum containing a low density of particles, predominantly a plasma of hydrogen and helium, as well as electromagnetic radiation, magnetic fields, neutrinos, dust, and cosmic rays.

Outer space - Wikipedia
 
VPE, "In fact 99.999+ of the universe is nothing."

Sorry, 99.999+ of the Universe contains several atoms per cubic metre.

Cat :)

Outer space is not completely empty—it is a hard vacuum containing a low density of particles, predominantly a plasma of hydrogen and helium, as well as electromagnetic radiation, magnetic fields, neutrinos, dust, and cosmic rays.
Outer space - Wikipedia
Electron orbit of a quantum leap is A or B not A.?
No way round the fact that nothing is in between orbits of set energy levels of electrons.
Seems like the universe is full of stuff but at the basic level even an atom not much exists to make an atom, mostly nothing and quantum leaps say so.
Breaking down the neutron or proton is also mostly nothing.

Not my law about quantum mechanics, i just try to solve how an electron can orbit a neutron/proton forever without loss of energy or orbit mechanics.
IMO only real way is set energy level, nothing, set energy level ETC so loosing energy doesn't exist with a set energy level of a quantum orbit.
It can orbit at it's energy level forever without loosing energy because to alter orbit it need to loose or gain energy (conservation of energy) won't allow to pass energy to nothing.
 
Aug 14, 2020
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Yet another interpretation and I am rather sure, very sure, this one is in no way original to me:

The set (such as t=0) of all constituent elements will not be a constituent element of the set. It will exist, though, and it will be noticeable even if not obviously so.

(*note* i almost did myself in by trying to qualify it too much. I dropped that portion to leave it to others if it can be left at all.)
 
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May 23, 2021
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Is space "I'm using the word as an area that can be occupied" something? If so then I believe that nothing can't be possible. Well if you believe in infinite space then its not possible. ALSO had a though earlier today. Is it possible to be absolutely still in space, as in to occupy one area of space without movement for a set amount of time.
 
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