The Changing Faces of Space pp 219-234 | Cite as

# The End of Space as Entity

## Abstract

The common idea of space that we still have is surely due to Newton. Space, similar to a plank, is the ‘entities’ on which and within take place all facts of the world. Although later intuition of Maxwell and Faraday of electromagnetic fields had become more complex and problematic the Newtonian idea, so much so that the ‘field’ is a widespread entity (thus no longer fixed) that fills all space determining it, however, it remained the foundational concept of ‘entity’. A ‘entity’, once again, predetermined and preordained. Only with Einstein come to lay the foundations for the revolutionary concept whereby this space does not exist. The space is an immense gravitational field constantly moving. The world, the complex of ‘things’, is not made of particles and fields that live dynamically in a space as fixed ‘entity’, but from fields that, one on the other, overlapped and/or in continuity, move in a dimension (the gravitational field in fact) to turn dynamic. There is no longer an absolute position in space, because there isn’t an absolute space predetermined that can be leveraged. However, it is only with the acquisitions of quantum mechanics that finally disappears the idea of space-entity. Each ‘thing’ is, in fact, led to its own granular structures: the electromagnetic fields themselves are composed of grains (photons). Moreover, the ‘granular’ combination is not based on deterministic axioms, but ‘only’ on probabilistic ones. This means that the ways in which bodies combine and move are determined only by probabilistic projections. From all this—that is, from Einstein’s discoveries and acquisitions of quantum mechanics—follows that the space as a field (such as the gravitational field) has a granular structure that every time is the result of the probabilistic combination of entities in combinatorial movement. The space, therefore, by ‘entities’, in its being gravitational field in this new sense, can finally be described as a ‘cloud of probability of space’s grains’ that is no more than the expected (desirable in a probabilistic sense) way, always changing, of interrelation, never intended and necessary—and therefore never necessitated and necessary—between entities. Space is therefore not a pre-determined and consistent entity within and on which things exist, but it is a ‘something’ only, and each time, starting with the relationship of contiguity between entities/objects returning to be ‘something’ and that, in turn, are the result of probabilistic, granular, combinations.

### References

- Augustine of Hippo. (1909).
*Confessions*(Eng. ed.). London: Pusey.Google Scholar - Born, M. (1962).
*Einstein’s theory of relativity*[1920/1962] (Eng. ed.). New York: E.P. Dutton & Company.Google Scholar - Eddington, A.S. (1920).
*Space, time and gravitation*.*An outline of the general relativity theory*. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar - Einstein, A. (1954a).
*Foreword*to Max Jammer,*Concepts of space*.*The history of theories of space in physics*. Cambridge: Harvard University Press (pp. XI–XVI).Google Scholar - Einstein, A. (1954b).
*Relativity: The special and general theory*[1916]. (Eng. ed. 15th ed.) London & New York: Routledge (1993).Google Scholar - Einstein, A. (1954c). Appendix 5:
*Relativity and the problem of space*.*Relativity: The special and general theory*(pp. 139–158).Google Scholar - Einstein, A. (1997).
*The foundation of the general theory of relativity*. In A.J. Kox, M.J. Klein & R. Schulmann,*The collected papers of Albert Einstein (The Berlin years: Writings, 1914–1917)*(Vol. 6, Doc. 30). Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar - Einstein, A., & Infeld, L. (2008).
*The evolution of physics*.*From early concepts to relativity and quanta*[1938]. New York: Simon & Schuster.Google Scholar - Feynman, R.P. (1985).
*QED.**The strange theory of light and matter*. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar - Kumar, M. (2008).
*Quantum.**Einstein, Bohr and the great debate about the nature of reality*. London: Icon Books Ltd.Google Scholar - Penrose, R. (2004).
*The Road to Reality*.*A complete guide to the laws of the universe*. London: Jonathan Cape.Google Scholar - Rovelli, C. (2006).
*What is time? What is space?*[2004] (Eng. ed.). Rome: Di Renzo Editore.Google Scholar - Rovelli, C. (2015).
*Seven brief lessons on physics*[2014] (Eng. ed.). London: Penguin Random House.Google Scholar - Rovelli, C. (2017).
*Reality is not what it seems: The journey to quantum gravity*[2014] (Eng. ed.). London: Penguin Random House.Google Scholar - Thorne, S.K. (1994).
*Black holes and time warps.**Einstein’s outrageous legacy*. New York: W.W. Norton & Company.Google Scholar - Valente, G. (2017).
*Causalità relativistica**.*Problemi filosofici all’incontro di teoria dei quanti e relatività ristretta. Milano: Mimesis Edizioni.Google Scholar - Weatherall, J.O. (2016).
*Void.**The strange physics of nothing*. New Haven & London: Yale University Press.Google Scholar - Whitehead, A.N. (1967).
*Science and the modern world: Lowell lectures*[1925] (7a ed.). London: Scientific Book Club.Google Scholar