Before the commencement of this discussion, I find it necessary to inform the reader of my use of the word ‘dimension’: I have employed it in lieu of the term ‘avenue of change’ owing to the much more necessary and pertinent reference to the axes of a graph-paper plot. If, for example, I elaborate on the virtues of a fifth dimension, I am not speaking of the dimension beyond time, but a property (that I know will exhibit changes) the changes in the values of which I am interested in.
If you were to plot everything on this planet on a graph, and then, if you were to signify every curve with a representative function, and if you were to trace these functions to a root, all of them would find a solution in one common event: human observation. Observation is the basis of science. Through the process of observing something – a person, an event, a series of events or an eclectically fashioned group of them all – one essentially tracks change. We are recognizing a change of state of an object through multiple dimensions, understanding the quantity and the quality of that change, and we then are observing the process till its culmination.
When I pick my pen up to write, I am changing the spatial distribution of objects in four dimensions: the location of the pen in space changes, and since time has elapsed, I know myself, together with the pen, to have moved to a different point in the time dimension. Now, were I to stay still, unmoving and unthinking, for a sufficient period of time, without moving my fingers or the pen, leaving all of them be at their respective location – would I know time to have passed?
The answer to this question would be simple if there exists a frame of reference in my vicinity that I am in a position to observe, a frame of reference that, in lieu, is changing. Therefore, even though I may be frozen at a point in the universe, a frame of reference that has succumbed to the toils of the fourth dimension will indicate that time has passed, and that I have refused to change only in three dimensions.
However, consider this: what if the changing frame of reference ceased to exist? What if a stationary observer were to be placed in a room sealed completely, permitting not even the entry or exit of light, with only a point source within the room the reflections of which the observer is foreordained to observe for an infinitely long time? If all changes outside the room were to cease to exist, would the observer be traveling through the fourth dimension? In other words, do the dimensions exist within us, or do the dimensions exist without us?
To the answer to that question we shall come to at the denouement of this discussion since there is one more issue the questions regarding which I want to raise now. Reconstituting the ideas of the previous paragraph: the universe can be defined as a set of sets (or a superset); it is a massive cosmological container. Although we perceive and understand it on a daily basis through changes observed in the first four dimensions, there are an innumerable number of other processes that are executed in other dimensions. These dimensions are independent, exclusive, irreducible, uncompoundable.
A wooden block has length, breadth, height (dimensions numbered 1, 2 & 3). It exists in the dimension of time (4), has density (5), and a price (6) at which it can be purchased. Therefore, we are able to interact with it through 6 dimensions.
Although the dimensions themselves are exclusive, their parametric variation need not be so. For example, if the density of the object were to be altered, the price of the object will so also be altered since its applications will now be different. Persisting along these very lines, if a second observer is introduced, however, to monitor any and all change in a hitherto unobserved dimension (intro. electrical properties, 7), would it matter now that if a dimension is unknown, and the necessity for it is never perceived, then does that impertinent dimension exist at all?
If observation was to be prohibited, would the dimensions themselves then exist? If none were present to witness the execution of a process that were to be either the cause, the effect, or both, of another process, would either of the two processes exist? Since it has been revealed that human observation is essential to the establishment of scientific hypothesis or fact, does it seem that it is herefore compatible to assume that, with the addition of an observer to a system that already includes other observers, the validity of the systemic processes will be changed? No. That is not the case, as is evident by the multitude of conclusions empirically arrived at each day. Therefore, there is an established factitude inherently present in all observed phenomena that could prompt one to disregard the necessity of an observer in order to establish the reality of an occurrence. Does this conclusion on our part, thus, corroborate the possibility that dimensions do exist without an observer?
A friend of mine once told me, in so succinctly a form, that “we only know what we already know.” The meaning of this statement is that we are capable of discovery only if we already know what we are looking for, and that it is impossible to discover something whose existence was alien to us; “accidental discoveries” are but aptly named.
We craft dimensions in our mind, an assiduous assembly of constants and variables so carefully chosen so as to connote that the quelling of our doubts, and that only, be its sole purpose of existence. In the process, we do not know anything of the true nature[?] of those elements, but only an observed one and, more importantly, an understood one. If, by my use of the term ‘true nature’, you were led to believe that I am leaning towards an absolute existence of the dimensions, I am sorry, but such observations – such as “accidental discoveries”, indeed – are pure in the sense that they are not marred by human doubt as to their existence; in that regard, accidental discoveries are “pure clues“, and were not discovered by the act of human observation of its causes and/or effects. They are the representation of something we did not know existed, and whose existence has been revealed in conjunction with something else that we were looking for, and, finally, whose discovery brings to light our failure to account for such a fact.