Sunday, December 16, 2012
The Harm Done by Newtonian Physics: Part Two
Other examples abound - the cooling of a hot cup of coffee; we do not grow younger; ashes do not turn into logs. There are "irreversible processes" and go forward in time. This is as far as Father Spitzer goes here in defining time. But his crowning example is that of the billiard balls. This is supposed to explain the cause of time's irreversible flow forward. However, if one takes a film of the process in which a neat triangular arrangement of the billiard balls racked up and then hit by the cue ball, scattering the balls aimlessly in many directions, what happens? Then run the film backwards, according to Father Spitzer and his Newtonian physics,...either way one runs the film, one would see a process that is possible according to the laws of physics. The film run "backwards" isn't showing something that is physically impossible; rather, it is showing something that is simply incredibly improbable. (p.25)
The rest is rhetorical subterfuge hiding the fact that what the film run backwards is showing is not just "incredibly improbable" and therefore physically possible, but actually and physically impossible.
Father Spitzer here avoids what should be a major point in physics from the metaphysical principles of act and potency governing all cases of motion or process. This is the absolute necessity for an agent in act to initiate any motion, either immanent or transitive, biological or local. Thus, no billiard ball acts on its own to strike the rack. Rather, a human agent is absolutely required to strike the ball that strikes the rack. In this case, the passive beings are inanimate, non-living billiard balls and their passive dispositions are multiple but governed, also, by certain laws of friction and impact. This is another issue involving the immediate environment of the pool table. But all such circumstances are strictly defined by the physical laws built into the materials of the balls. There is no such thing as chance or randomness, as such. Every single detail of particle physics down to the smallest nano-second of a particle's existence, up to the mega-motions of the stars - all are governed and were initially created by the one Supremely Infinite and Intelligent, wise Triune God of Genesis One, who alone is all Actuality and the Primary Agent and Efficient Cause of all things.
at 5:20 PM