Nikola Tesla And His Connection With Chinese Cosmology

Nikola Tesla And Yin Yang

The Serbo-Croatian genius Nikola Tesla did not agree with the basic assumptions of quantum theory, and therefore developed a theory of the cosmos remarkably close to the Chinese cosmology.

Credit: Hubble

Unlike European science, Chinese natural philosophy is based on associative rather than analytical principles. At the heart of the Chinese view of nature is the yin-yang theory.

Starting with the notion of Tao (the mother of yin and yang ), the Chinese concluded that the universe is a manifestation of opposite and complementary forces. The interaction between yin and yang was the beginning of Creation and led to the development of life on Earth.

The Chinese said, “When yin and yang , initially united, were separated forever, the mountains poured out water.” The water is predominantly yin , the mountains mostly yang .

Once the Chinese concluded that nature operates on a binary principle, they classified all imaginable phenomena and processes as an interaction of yin and yang .

The classification included both ponderable and imponderable phenomena and processes: sky (the cosmos) and earth, day and night, positive and negative, forward and backward, male and female, growth and decline, something and nothing, strong and weak, movement and rest. , space and time, etc.

The Tension Between yin-yang opposites : qi (or chi)

The Chinese have a special word to describe the tension between yin-yang opposites: qi (or chi ). Wherever there are opposites, there is qi. The tension of pushing and pulling between two magnets is a manifestation of qi, but so is the tension in a highly contested tennis match and the sexual tension between men and women.

The Chinese said, ” Qi resides in tension.” And the word is associated with magnetism. In fact, the modern Chinese word for electricity includes the character for qi.

The first written character for qi dates from the Shang dynasty (circa 1600-1046 BC) and gives us an idea of ​​how the Chinese perceived qi. The pictogram consists of three wavy horizontal lines that suggest a continuous wave.

Qi.

Scholars translate qi in various ways: as cosmic breath, ether, spirit, or life force, among others. Sinologist Joseph Needham, borrowing a concept from quantum physics, translated qi as ‘matter-energy. As a result of the yin and yang, the Qi has no real equivalent in other cultures and is best left untranslated.

Exceptionally, the yin-yang system adapts to both magnetism and gravity. The Chinese pictogram for gravity is a composite character made up of two different pictograms. One means ‘Heavy’, the other ‘Strength’. The following image shows the gravitational pull of the sun on the earth and the earth on the moon. Given the dynamics at play, the Chinese name for gravity – ‘heavy force’ – makes sense.

In the yin-yang system, gravity and magnetism are manifestations of qi.

In the yin-yang universe, orbital patterns are an interaction of opposing forces. The planets remain in their orbits through rotational thrust ( yang ) and gravitational pull ( yin ). Born from the rubble of the Big Bang, they finally settled into an orbit where the qi between the sun’s pull and the rotational push is most acute. The universe is permeated with qi that mediates all processes, including gravity and magnetic phenomena.

Nikola Tesla On Luminiferous Ether

In Europe, the closest equivalent to the Chinese notion of qi is the luminiferous ether. The word has ancient roots, but was used commonly until the late 19th century.

In the early days of radio communication, people assumed that radio waves traveled through the ether, but in 1887 scientists tried to detect it without success. Later, Einstein’s theory of relativity did not require the existence of an ether, and speculations about its possible existence were virtually exiled from quantum theory.

In 1919, Einstein became a world celebrity when scientists observed that light (photons) traveling from distant stars to Earth is bent by the gravitational impact of the sun. They later concluded that space is curved, based on the assumption that light (the path of photons) and space are interchangeable phenomena.

This uncritical use of the ambiguous word “space” got generations of physicists off on the wrong foot. Space means different things to physicists, astronauts, and architects.

The deflection of the photon trajectory led to the notion of curved space.

Tesla was one of the few scientists who questioned the notion of curved space. “I maintain that space cannot be bent, for the simple reason that it cannot have properties,” he said. «It could well be said that God has properties, but He does not have them; they are just attributes, and these are of our own creation.

Instead, Tesla argued that the luminiferous ether is an electromagnetic field and the medium for the propagation of light (luminiferous means ‘light carrier’). The genius wrote:

«Only the existence of an (ethereal) force field can explain the movements of bodies as observed, and its assumption dispenses with spatial curvature. All literature on this subject is useless and destined for oblivion. So are all attempts to explain the workings of the universe without acknowledging the existence of the ether and the indispensable role it plays in phenomena. ‘

Surprisingly, Einstein sympathized with Tesla’s argument. In 1919 he gave a lecture in the Dutch city of Leiden, where he pointed out that relativity does not require ether, but does not exclude its possible existence.

Einstein said, “To deny the ether is ultimate to assume that empty space has no physical qualities of any kind.”

Today, almost no quantum physicist accepts the possible existence of the ether and claims that Einstein was wrong.

Tesla developed his theory of the ether between 1893 and 1894, long before the quantum revolution overshadowed his work. In an article written in 1930, Man’s Greatest Achievement, Tesla summed up his views for posterity:

«Only the existence of an (ethereal) force field can explain the movements of bodies as observed, and its assumption dispenses with spatial curvature. All literature on this subject is useless and destined for oblivion. So are all attempts to explain the workings of the universe without acknowledging the existence of the ether and the indispensable role it plays in phenomena. ‘

Surprisingly, Einstein sympathized with Tesla’s argument. In 1919 he gave a lecture in the Dutch city of Leiden, where he pointed out that relativity does not require ether, but does not exclude its possible existence.

Einstein said, “To deny the ether is ultimately to assume that empty space has no physical qualities of any kind.”

Today, almost no quantum physicist accepts the possible existence of the ether and claims that Einstein was wrong.

Tesla developed his theory of the ether between 1893 and 1894, long before the quantum revolution overshadowed his work. In an article written in 1930, Man’s Greatest Achievement, Tesla summed up his views for posterity:

“All perceptible matter comes from a primary substance, or tenuity beyond conception, filling all space, the akasha or luminiferous ether, on which the life-giving Prana or creative force acts, calling into existence, in infinite cycles all things and phenomena.

Eight centuries earlier, the Chinese philosopher and cosmologist Zhou Dun-Yi explained nature in similar terms. Zhou integrated the so-called Five Element theory into the yin-yang system. In the Zhou diagram, the Supreme Polarity ( Taijitu ) produced the positive cosmic force yang and the negative cosmic force yin from an abundance of qi. Mediated by qi, yin, and yang they created the five elements: metal, wood, water, fire, and earth.

Like Tesla, Zhou Dun-yi defined nature as a process of transformation. The Five Elements, or Wu Xing, are conceived as material principles rather than concrete things. Xing intended to do or act. The interaction of yin and yang through different combinations of the five agents generates all things in a process of endless change and transformation.

Zhou Dun-yi, like all Chinese philosophers, was inspired by the Book of Changes, the “manual” of the yin-yang universe. He integrated the Five Elements theory into the yin-yang system to propose a unified theory of nature. And while his Supreme Polarity Diagram does not explain the mechanical, organic, and magnetic processes of nature, it conceptually accommodates them all.

In the last 100 years, physicists have proposed a host of new theories that are based on relativity and Einstein’s quantum theory. Using mathematical extrapolations, they have proposed wormholes, dark matter, black holes, string theory, and other mathematical abstractions that move them further and further away from experiential knowledge.

Recent advances in neurophysiology have fueled interest in consciousness in recent decades and brought science and the humanities a little closer. The idea that the universe itself is conscious resonates with scientists and the general public alike. Most likely, the universe created the conditions that made the development of consciousness possible.

Either way, Tesla’s aether theory offers a better framework for exploring these and other existential questions than conventional theoretical quantum mechanics. Tesla had a human-centered view of science. This is evident in the aforementioned essay The Greatest Achievement of Man, in which he celebrated the ether. In the opening paragraph write:

“When a child is born, his sense organs come into contact with the outside world. The waves of sound, heat, and light hit her weak body, her sensitive nerve fibers tremble, her muscles contract and relax in obedience: a gasp, a breath, and in this act a marvelous little engine, of inconceivable delicacy and complexity of construction, unlike any other on earth, is linked to the wheel of the Universe.

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