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Rhythms of the Universe
















Rhythms of the Universe

Presentation to FSMN in March and April 2003 by Ray Tomes


Fundamental Scientific Theory

Scientists have been searching for some single theory that unites all the branches of science to replace the many hundreds of existing rules, laws and formula. Such a fundamental theory should have as few as possible arbitrary constants, ideally none. The single principle should be easily understood and be able to be applied so as to understand all the phenomena of the sense world.

The single underlying principle of the universe could well be the oscillations of a tensile medium. What is meant by a tensile medium is able to be understood by considering a bowl of jelly or a block of steel. In each case, any distortions applied to the blob of material attempt to undo themselves and return to the original shape, but because of momentum will inevitably overshoot and lead to oscillations. In the case of steel we know these oscillations as sound waves and for jelly we are able to observe the oscillations at a more human speed.

Actually this is the medium that explains the equations of Maxwell which fit the observed behaviour of electricity, magnetism and radio and light waves. One is to understand that the medium is continuous rather than composed of any particles or having any structure of its own. Einstein also realised that such a medium was consistent with Special Relativity and actually required by General Relativity.

More than a century ago scientists had great problems trying to reconcile a tensile aether for the propagation of light waves in interplanetary space while at the same time allowing the planets to move through that space in a way that clearly was experiencing no friction. How could the aether be many thousands of times stronger than steel and part more easily for the planets than butter for a hot knife?

The answer to this question did not come until de Broglie who showed that matter also had a wave nature. Once it is understood that matter is a special sort of standing wave in the tensile medium then we see that it does not have to open up for matter to pass through. Rather, matter is just a type of oscillation which moves through the medium in the same way that sound moves through a block of steel.

Let us first be clear what a standing wave is and what distinguishes it from the other type of wave, a travelling wave. If we have a long rope with a person holding each end one person may flick their end up and down and a ripple will pass along the rope. This is a travelling wave and similar to a light wave in that the motion of the rope is at right angles to the direction that the wave travels in, or as it is called a transverse wave. If both people flick their ends up and down together then the rope may do something like what it does when skipping and make just a single motion with all parts moving up and down together but with the centre moving much more than the ends. This is called a standing wave because it continues in one place over an extended time period. A standing wave is, as we can see from the two people wiggling the rope, mathematically equivalent to two travelling waves travelling in opposite directions.

The exact form of the electromagnetic standing waves that are matter is a complicated question. However we can best understand them as concentric spherical shells of standing waves in 3D. If we wiggled a point in our tensile medium then waves would travel outwards in all directions as spherical shells. If we had a mirror to reflect these light waves back to the centre then the interaction of these ingoing and outgoing waves would make a standing wave in 3D and we would have a structure which is what is suggested for particles.

Actually the situation is a little more complicated because the way in which the centre is wiggled may be in a straight line or in circles or in other ways and there are a number of possible different forms of standing waves resulting. These different forms have different polarisation schemes. Polarisation is simply the direction in which the medium wiggles in any given place, either in straight lines, circles or ellipses. It is suggested that these different schemes account for the various different particle properties such as charge, spin and so on.

This presentation will not attempt to identify the particles with these various schemes of polarisation but simply to show that such a possibility exists. Furthermore it is suggested that other longer waves than particles exist which might be called atomic, cellular, planetary, stellar and galactic waves. These are, like the particles, standing electromagnetic waves, but are longer ranging from microscopic through to millions of light years in wavelength. These waves give scale and form to the universe and have not been suspected by scientists because they had no good reason to do so until now.

However the above is an explanation that I have arrived at in an entirely different way. This other way depends on the study of cycles in nature which is something that I have spent the equivalent of about 15 years doing full time. The study of cycles as a discipline or as an interdisciplinary study is not that common but has been practiced by a number of researchers over a long period of time. Although not aware of the work of these other researchers for a long time in my research, when I found out about them I discovered that they had found just the same patterns as I did. So you can safely say that my results are well established even though little known.

Cycles in Nature

Back in the 1970s I was doing economic forecasting for corporations in New Zealand. This lead to the discovery that there where certain periods of time over which peaks and troughs tended to recur in many different financial, economic and demographic variables. This cyclical approach worked at making reasonable forecasts and so further study of cycles was made. Four cycles were found and they all had periods which were almost exact fractions of 35.6 years. Was this coincidence or was something going on here? Further cycles found supported the view that something fascinating was indeed going on.

A study of 44 years of weekly corn prices showed that the prices could be represented by the sum of a number of regular waves and that these waves had frequencies in exactly the same proportion as the white notes plus two black notes of the musical scale. This was interesting because the original four cycles found in the New Zealand economy had exactly the relationship of a major chord in music.

At the time I didn't tell anyone about this because it seemed so weird. Was God playing scales in the corn prices and a chord in the economy? It didn't fit with anything that I knew about the world. But over time these discoveries became less mysterious and eventually became quite a sensible state of affairs. There were two reasons for this.

Firstly, non-linear systems were becoming popular things to study, and it was clear that in a non-linear system harmonics, or exact frequency multiples, of cycles could develop. For example, if there were an 11 year cycle in rainfall in a region where wheat was grown and the average rainfall was suitable for wheat, then twice per cycle the rainfall is optimal and twice it is not, being either too high or too low. This would lead to a 5.5 year cycle in wheat production, and through the market effects to a similar period in price variations. It is also possible to create cycles that are 3 or 4 times faster than other cycles in this way.

Secondly, upon visiting the Foundation for the Study of Cycles I found that almost identical cycle periods and the musical pattern had previously been independantly discovered by a number of different researchers. There could be no doubt that this musical pattern was real, that it pervaded the whole earth, that it affected many seemingly unrelated variables and had persisted for a long time. This much was known for sure, but the deeper cause of the pattern was unknown. The pattern could be traced to some quite long cycles and some of these were found in the weather or climate.

A number of these researchers had realised that the common cycle periods found also linked up with some solar system cycles. This was a no-go area for many scientists because it smacked of astrology and only a bold person who didn't care about funding was prepared to publicly say such things. However deeper investigation showed that there could be no doubt about it, the longer cycles in climate also matched longer cycles in planetary configurations. There are in fact mechanisms to explain this but that is an area that I will not go into depth here because it is very technical. I state simply that I consider most astrology as practiced is quite unscientific, although there have been valid scientific astrological studies done such as those of Gauquelin.

Of course there should be no surprises that astronomical cycles are present in many variables. We live our lives by daily, weekly, monthly and seasonal cycles, all of which derive from astronomical configurations. The coming and going of ice ages are now generally accepted to be due to three Milankovitz cycles which are the variation in the Earth's axis tilt, its precession and the change in shape of the Earth's orbit.

As mentioned above, non-linear systems can develop harmonics, and so the question was whether they could develop the whole musical pattern of cycle frequencies? In the end I came to a single axiom which could explain the whole pattern that had been found and also make many predictions which would later be confirmed as correct.

The Harmonics Theory

The Harmonics Theory is my own work and its single axiom is:

The universe is a standing wave which develops waves which are harmonics, and each of these does the same.

It is not a new idea that a wave may develop harmonics, it is well known that musical instruments and physics systems have this property. What is new is the second clause about the harmonics then doing the same. I have found that a one dimensional system does not normally have this property, but that two and three dimensional systems do.

There is need for a little mathematics at this point, but nothing more complicated than multiplying small integers together and adding up some columns. To make things easy rather than use the periods of cycles the frequency is used. In common practice we use period for longer cycles and frequency for shorter ones, but the calculations are very simple in terms of frequency so it is preferred.

The starting point will be a cycle that has a fundamental frequency which we just call 1. It might be 1 anything, it doesn't matter as what we are interested in is the proportions. Later on we will attempt to find out what this 1 is, this fundamental oscillation of the universe. For some time I thought that it was probably 1 cycle per 14 billion years but another very different possibility exists.

So starting from a single cycle of frequency 1 the axiom says that harmonics develop which means that frequencies of 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 and so on are created. Typically in a non-linear system the earlier harmonics are stronger and the later, or higher order ones, are weaker. But the axiom says one more thing and that is that each of these does the same. That means that the cycle of frequency 2 also produces frequencies 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14 and so on while 3 produces 6, 9, 12, 15, 18 and 4 makes 8, 12, 16 and so on. And again, each of these cycles produces harmonics and so on.

The final result of all this is that some harmonics, like the 12th, are produced in many different ways while others like the 11th and 13th are only produced in one way. In fact this means that the 12th harmonic of the universal wave is 8 times stronger than the 11th or 13th harmonics.

When harmonics in the interval 48 to 96 are calculated two things stand out. The first is that the strongest cycles in that range have exactly the proportions of the major scale, just like was found in the economic variables. The second is that the next stronger cycles are the white notes plus two black notes as found in the corn prices. The music of the universe was no longer a mystery but something that inevitable flows from a single simple principle.

These calculations are very simple, but when we look at higher order harmonics in the thousands and millions they become very tedious. However that is why we have computers and they can be used to calculate accurately the pattern to very high orders. From this several more unexpected things were found.

At higher and higher orders, the strongest harmonics stand out more and more from the individual background of less strong harmonics. At the same time, the number of weak harmonics grows rapidly so that the strong harmonics have a smaller and smaller proportion of the total energy. So at large scales the universe should be very ordered but at small scales there should be something that looks a lot like noise superimposed on the obvious regularity. This began to sound like quantum events.

Another unexpected thing was that exceptional strong harmonics occurred at nearly equal ratios. The first one is 34560 and others are near to powers of that number. This was something that I had never come across before but when I looked at the universe the predicted pattern was quite clearly there. By repeatedly dividing the size of the observable universe by 34560 we get rather good estimates for all the major named structures at different scales, galaxies, stars, planets, moons and later cells, atoms, nucleons and possibly quarks.

The reason that space is divided up in the same way as time is that it is the nature of waves in any medium. Even in a guitar or violin string, when we have n waves in a string then the frequency is n times greater and the waves are each 1/n of the size of the whole. So the harmonics theory talks about the division of space and time in certain proportions which are much stronger in terms of the energy in those waves.

The fact that the correct spacing of and wavelength of nucleons could be predicted from the size of the observable universe was quite unexpected as I was only trying to explain cycles in the economy and on larger scales. However it was a clear sign that I had found something very fundamental about the universe. It was also clear that atomic particles and atoms had to be some kind of electromagnetic standing wave so as to be produced in this way.

And that single simple principle made sense in terms of a non-linear wave equation for the universe which is what general relativity and Maxwell's equations say is true anyway. At this point I began to think about which parts of physics were more fundamental and it was clear that particle physics with all its extra rules and arbitrary constants was not at all fundamental. It was something that was to be derived from electromagnetism under general relativity and an understanding of the harmonics theory.

Description of the Universe

Based on all of the above the universe may be seen to be nothing other than the oscillations of a blob of material that is a tensile medium. That which we call matter is nothing of substance, it is simply spherical standing waves in the tensile medium which is the real substance. That is why matter can pass through the medium of light.

These oscillations range in wavelength from at least billions of light years down to trillionths of a centimetre and in period from billions of years to septillionths of a second. These various waves all intermesh and have relationships to each other.

Light is often described as a linear medium because two waves can pass through each other without apparent interference. However there is actually a very tiny interaction for ordinary light under normal conditions and light is correctly described as a non-linear medium. Under extreme conditions the interaction is much greater, such as in matter where light is refracted and reflected. This is because in matter the electromagnetic field rises as we go closer to "particles" which are spherical standing waves. This means that their energy density rises as the inverse square towards the centre of the particle.

This increase in energy density near the centre of any spherical wave is the very reason that the non-linearity is greater there and so why stars form near the centre of galaxies, planets form near stars, moons form near planets and nucleons form in the middle of atoms.

The order of creation is from the top down and not as in big bang cosmology from the bottom up. The galactic waves existed for a long time before stellar waves formed and so on, with particle waves being only a relatively recent addition.

Not only is time and space divided in this way but so is velocity. The 34560 major level of structures shows up as the series: light, sound, heat (& nerves & air currents), water currents, continental drift. Such intermeshed wave velocities also helps in trying to understand the subtle energies of biology which physics ignores.

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What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.

The basic tool for the manipulation of reality is the manipulation of words. If you can control the meaning of words, you can control the people who must use the words. Philip K. Dick