Einstein’s theory of gravity, and how Ehi-passiko has become Deva-passiko!
Posted on January 9th, 2016

Bodhi Dhanapala, Quebec, Canada

Einstein published his new theory of gravitation in 1915. Its centenary has produced many popular articles explaining this seminal theory that plays a vital role even in everyday life. When  you use a GPS to locate where you are,  it uses four satellite signals to solve Einstein’s field equations whose solutions gives  you your current location (longitude, latitude and height above sea level,  these form three dimensions) and your current time (this is called the fourth dimension in Einstein’s theory).

However, popular science writers like to shock the readers and catch their attention. A common shock-statement  is that “there is no gravitational attraction according to Einstein”. We find this stated  even by university professors who avoid  such incorrect  statements.

The ordinary person correctly asks, “then why do apples or coconuts fall”? It is easy to show  that they fall with increasing speed, i.e., with an acceleration.  According to Newton, if there is an acceleration, a force must exist! This law of Newton has not been overthrown by anyone including Einstein.  So  the force of gravity  exists!  Also we can feel it by successively trying to lift  masses of 5 kilos, 10 kilos or 100 kilos.  The heavier the mass, the larger is the force needed to lift it up. Bigger masses  need larger forces to accelerate the mass by the same amount. This too can be easily seen by allowing the different masses to  slide down a smooth inclined plank and measuring the time taken by the masses to slide different distances. So, we all can feel the forces and see the acceleration.
Here we are  following  the Ehipassiko” principle of come and see,  and confirm for yourself”.

In science, we do not immediately believe what we see. We convert what we  want to see into pointer readings of clocks  or marks on measuring sticks. These can be checked not just by one person, but any one, even if he were blind, by feeling the position of the pointer or  the markers. We use sensitive instruments, so that science can confirm the existence of things that cannot be seen by the naked eye.
Science deals with digitized data about this external world” provided by these instruments. The data are  common to every one, and not personal”  to any Silva or Senanayaka.

Ehipassiko replaced by Devapassiko.
In Sri Lanka, readers are familiar with  Dr. Nalin de Silva’s claim that   “Western Science” is a “rotten lie” (patta-pal boru). However, when it  suites him he embraces Einstein’s relativity and  criticizes Sri Lankan  academics for “thinking that there is a gravitational attraction, even a century after Einstein showed that gravity is a fiction” (e.g, see Vidusara 18-11-2015, and many other articles). Writing in the Lankaweb (25th Dec. 2015)  he says that එය නිවුටන් විසින් සංස්කරණය කෙරී දැන් බටහිර ලෝකය පමණක් නොව සිංහල බෞද්ධයන් ද ඊනියා යථාර්ථයක් ලෙස දකින පට්ටපල් බොරුවකි.” That is, in English,   the force of gravity  is  a rotten lie fabricated by Newton and now considered to be a reality not only by the Western World, but also by the Sinhala Buddhist”.  Since science is a rotten lie, how does Dr. Silva  find the truth? Dr. Silva, writing on  28-12-2015 Lankaweb says ” අපි පේන අසමු. කේන්දර බලමු.  පංචෙන්ද්‍රිය ගෝචර නොවන ජීවීන් හා වස්තු ගැන විශ්වාස කරමු. අපට අපේ මග යෑමට ලජ්ජාවක් නැත. ලජ්ජා විය යුත්තේ බටහිර දැනුමේ දාසයන් වීමට ය. This states that We listen to psychics and soothsayers, we accept horoscopes, we believe in organisms and objects not observed by our senses. We are not ashamed of our path. What we should be ashamed of is being slaves of western knowledge”. His acceptance of psychics and revealed   knowledge  is typified by Dr. Silva’s uncritical acceptance of the words  of  a woman who claims to hear voices (allegedly the voice of God Natha). People hear voices” when they have the mental illness known as Schizophrenia or similar mental disorders.  This  psychic,  known has Ms. Senanayaka,  claims that God Natha told her  that the Rajarata farmer, stricken by a chronic kidney disease of unknown origins (CKDU) is caused by Arsenic! Later, though no scientists or medic, she authored an article that appeared in a pretend science journal” claiming that glyphosate (a common weedkiller) and the hardness of water combine to cause CKDU.  But the medical and chemical scientists who have tested the soil and the water in Rajarata are unanimous that there is no significant amounts of arsenic or glyphosate in the Rajarata environment! However,  Dr. Silva writes (12-05-15) :  “අද මේ බටහිර විද්‍යාඥයන් යැයි කියාගන්නා අය අපට හිනාවන්නේ අප පංචෙන්ද්‍රිය ගෝචර නොවන නාථ දෙවියන් නමින් හැඳින්වෙන ප්‍රාණියකුගෙන් ආසනික් ග්ලයිෆොසේට් ආදිය ගැන දැනගත්තේ යැයි කියමිනි.  Today those who call themselves western scientists  laugh at us saying that we we learnt of arsenic and glyphosate from an organism   known as God Natha who is not observable by the five senses”.  First of all only Dr. Sillva talks of a a gropup called  western scientists”; we have yet to come across people who define themselves as eastern scientists, southern scientists or northern scientists etc. Scientists in any part of the world  have no problem of accepting objects or creatures that cannot  be observed by the senses as long as their existence can be inferred via data gathered as pointer readings of various events. In fact, ssuch observations using instruments have revelaed invisible microscopic creatures as well as subatomic objects.. Furthermore, no one is laughing at  Dr. Silva et al, but most people are aghast at them  who are trying to do irreparable harm to the food supply of the masses because they have rejected the scientific method of the Ehipassiko” doctrine and accepted the doctrine of Devapassiko”, i.e.,  let the psychic tell us the word of God Natha, and we follow her blindly”.

Observing gravity via our senses.
Dr. Silva continues to write in the same article as follows:
” කාලෝ හෝ වෙනත් කවරකු හෝ ගුරුත්වාකර්ෂණය පංචෙන්ද්‍රියවලින් ගෝචර කරගෙන තිබේ ද?, i.e., has Carlo Fonseka or anyone else observed the gravitational attraction with any of the five senses”? On 25-12-2015 he says අමරතුංග මහතා කලකට පෙර ගුරුත්චාකර්ෂණය තිබෙන බව කීවේ ය. එහෙත් ඔහු ගුරුත්වාකර්ෂණය ගෝචර වන්නේ කිනම් ඉන්ද්‍රියකට දැයි තවමත් කියා නැත”; i.e., Sometime ago Dr. Amaratunga said that there is a gravitational attraction. But he has not stated yet which sense organ observes the gravitational attraction”. Clearly, Dr. Silva has no difficulty in believing the unseen God Natha and accepting hearsay word attributed to Nath. But he seems to have difficulty in accepting gravity because he has not seen or felt it? These statements clearly imply that Dr. Silva wants to feel gravity himself. We suggest that he carry a 20 pound stone on his back for a week, and at that point he should consult Dr. Amaratunga or Dr. Fonseka if he hadn’t felt gravity.

Another problem he has with gravity is what he calls vyuktha gurthvaya” which presumably means abstract gravity”. When he gets into a corner discussing gravity he has no scruples in quickly hiding himself by claiming that we have to demonstrate vyuktha guruthvaya” and not the gravity that we all feel. Last March (2015) Prof. Dharmawardana pointed out that  Dr. Silva’s line of thinking is similar to that of Dr. Basil Mendis, a Peradeniya philosophy lecturer who claimed that the earth is actually flat, while the belief that the earth is a globe is an abstract piece of thinking which he regards as nonsense. Indeed Dr. Nalin de Silva’s thinking is in the same class of manasgaatha” (memtal aberrations) as that of the flat earthist Mendis.

Dr. Nalin de Silva, in a recent article entitled “Modernism, Western Science and Sinhala Medicine”
( Lanka Web, 15-12-2015) stated that one needs at least 25 years of training in modern physics to comprehend  western science, i.e., ( බටහිර භෞතික විද්‍යාව)…. සඳහා විශේෂ පුහුණුවක් අවශ්‍ය වෙයි. .. ඒ සඳහා අවශ්‍ය පුහුණුව ලබාගැනීමට අවුරුදු විසිපහකට අධික කාලයක් ගත කිරීමට සිදුවේ .  But he has stated that he had only four years of undergraduate mathematics and just one and a half years in modern physics!  Many of his pronouncements on the quantum theory, of photons having mass, photons scattering like marbles, his views on  Einstein’s famous E=MC2 law, or that of de Broglie, seem to be based on  loose material found in  popular books like that of Jim Baggot that he quotes, even without correcting simple errors found in that book. When I pointed all this out he twists his own words and says මෙහි අවුරුදු විසිපහක් යනුවෙන් අදහස් කරන්නේ වයස ය. ඒ මිස තමන් අදාළ ක්‍ෂෙත්‍රය පමණක් ඉගෙනීමට ගතකල කාලය නො වේ”  twenty fivers years means the age, and not the time needed to study the given field”. The readers can judge that Dr. Silva is a good follower of the hypocritical creed of the Jesuits.

What Einstein has said about Gravity.
A perusal of the technical works of Einstein is sufficient to show that Einstein warned against imagining that ‘gravitational attraction is merely something apparent, and not a part of reality’, even though some popular writers have begun to present such distortions.  Writers like Nalin de Silva say so perhaps to shock the reader and appear a notch above ordinary mortals” who believe in gravity!

So let us  go to Einstein’s own writings to see  what he said, after a brief summary.

What Einstein did was to give an explanation for gravity. Although Newton said that two masses (e.g., the earth and the moon) will attract each other, the nature of this force was left unstated.  According to Einstein, what we call “mass” is a warping or curvature of the “fabric of space-time” which is  where all events happen. Spacetime IS the entirety of of all events which involve three space dimensions and one time dimension.  A planet placed  near a big object like the sun contributes its own warping of spacetime, and together define  “a valley” (where the warping is least) between them. The “orbit of the planet” is along this least warped (locally flat) path, called a geodesic. So, perhaps everything can be explained in terms of the warping of spacetime, and its gradients. Mis-representing this,  popular writers have jump in to say that there is “no gravity needed”. But this is very far from the truth.

If curvature in spacetime is identified as mass, and  since mass is energy (by E=MC2), then this curvature is nothing but potential energy. The gradient of a potential energy is a force. Hence the gravitational force is alive and well in Einstein’s theory. The curvature is not the force of gravity, but it is a potential producing a gravitational force.  [The gradient is called an “affine connection” in the technical literature where the curvature is given as a tensor. However,  for simplicity we can think of a model where space has only one dimension, while time is the second dimension.]

We select three of Einstein’s  texts  and quote from places without mathematics.

1. From: Relativity, The special and General Theory, 15th edition, by Albert Einstein, 1959, p 176.
“Now we might easily suppose that the existence of a gravitational field is only an apparent one. We might also think that, regardless of the kind of gravitational field which may be present, we could always choose another reference-body such that no gravitational field exists with reference to it. This is by no means true for all gravitational fields, but only for those of quite special form. It is, for instance, impossible to choose a body of reference such that, as judged from it, the gravitational field of the earth (in its entirety) vanishes .

2. From: Einstein’s famous  Analen der Physik, article, 1916, reprinted as “Principle of Relativity” in Dover Publications  pages  111 et sec.).
“Of course we cannot replace any arbitrary gravitational field by a state of motion of the system without a gravitational field, any more than, by a transformation of relativity, we can transform all points of a medium in any kind of motion to rest.”

3. From: Page 58, The meaning of relativity, by A. Einstein, Princeton, 1921.
“Space-time regions of finite extent are, in general, not Galilean, so that a gravitational field cannot be done away with by any choice of co-ordinates in a finite region “.

So the reader can evaluate the claims of Dr. Nalin de Silva and writers of his ilk regarding what Einstein said. Their claim is simply  a “patta-pal-boruvak” (a rotten lie).

One Response to “Einstein’s theory of gravity, and how Ehi-passiko has become Deva-passiko!”

  1. aloy Says:

    Gravity supposed to propagate in the form of waves. At least that is what I understood by reading some books on gravity and Einstein both in mid 70s. How can this be explained if we are to go by a theory of potential gradients?.

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