The simple universe, a status summary

I have long wanted to generate a simple  and direct summary of my  research and writing to date This is a first attempt. I’m sure I’ve left much out but I hope you can take it as a beginning. Some of you may recall my earlier attempt to do it on one page, in three sentences. That still exists somewhere in my archive at This is not so ambitious.

My books:

the picnic at the edge of the universe: a sketch for a new cosmology,” first published as an ebook in 2011 (paperback 2015),is predicated on the notion that “our” universe is just one of many possible universes that may have arisen in the unlimited  cosmos that is the energy field in which it exists. This is one possible answer to Janna Levin’s question, “Is the universe infinite or just really, really big?” The narrative assumes the second premise, and the concomitant idea that if it is not infinite, then it must have an edge. The included fictional narrative, the long voyage,  purports to be a hypothetical search for another ‘universe’, which may or may not exist. The origins of the  limitless  cosmos, the primal energy field, is the one unsupported assumption, the proof  of the existence of which is the undeniable existence of the CMBR (the “cosmic microwave background radiation”). The premise is that “What was there at the beginning, however that occurred, is there still, and knowable.” There was no singularity, no unrepeatable event, no “big bang”, “something” was not created from nothing. The raw material was and is already there, and it’s products, that is, new stars, galaxies, planetary systems continue to be created even as we speak. No magical thinking is required.

My second book, “imagine darkness: the making of the simple universe,” (2015), limits its scope to the possible origins of the one universe we do know, and proposes that a process of reverberation, reinforcement, resonance, and phase transition in the field has led to the formation of the organized, coherent and temporarily stable entities we know as stars, galaxies, planetary systems, and ultimately, our earth, on which we conscious entities have evolved. It is a direct and continuous process, the transformation of energy into what we know as matter, which, for all we know, may have happened more than once in other regions of the cosmos, separate and apart from our own. We’ll never know for sure.

What we do know is that matter can be converted directly to energy, and that the reverse of this process does occur at different scales in our world, so the premise is a logical one. We also know that high complexity can arise from a few simple rules, or patterns. Examples can be seen in Conway’s “Game of Life,” and fractal geometry. These rules and patterns have always been the holy grail of science as we know it, even though when uncovered and identified they have usually been enshrined as “laws” as if they had been imposed by some divine fiat. Newton’s Laws of Motion, Maxwell’s equations, are prime examples. This is why I prefer to call them patternswe have discerned, discovered, rather than laws. Along the way in this scientific search for the underlying patterns of nature, many false if well-intentioned turnings have occurred. There has been a tendency to make unprovable assumptions based on prior unsupportable assumptions, the introduction of mystical, even mythical systems and structures with no basis in reality, facts or research, the assumption that mathematics is more real than descriptive (Quantum mechanics), that  geometry creates matter (General Relativity), that nothing exists until it is observed. Unfortunately, in these instances, the assumptions have become accepted as “the standard models,” stifling the possibility of exploring alternatives. Claims have been made, in fact, that QM is the most  successful theory ever developed in physics, while every new idea along the way gets “quantum” as part of its label.

Finally, I am convinced that the real world, the world that physics was invented to describe and explain, existed long before any conscious entity existed and thus does not depend on perception or consciousness for its existence, Reality is what I have defined as the set of objects, events, and phenomena that we encounter daily. As Robert Heinlein is said to have noted, “Reality is what is still there after you’ve stopped believing in it.” Objects remain the same each time they are observed. Objects have a longer duration or persistence than events or phenomena, the other members of the set. Events are generally of shorter duration but are perceptible in the same manner. Phenomena may be perceptible to only some of the senses, but generally persist longer than events.

In these books, I have tried to step back and outside of the accepted pathways, since for the last 100 years, they have remained incompatible and irreconcilable. My principal assumption has been first, that there is not one set of “laws” for the small and another for the large entities in nature, and second, that what was there at the beginning must be there still.

I am pleased that my models  can successfully explain some of the previously observed but inadequately explained facts of nature, particularly the limit of the speed of light, and the reconciliation of the “forces” of gravity and electromagnetism, both tied to their basis in the nature of their medium, the rediscovered ether, that is, distortions of the electromagnetic field.

In short, my model resolves itself into a set of what I have called axioms: They are:

 Axiom 1

The cosmos, what we call the ether, is made up of an electromagnetic energy field extending in all directions an indefinite distance from all points in the universe.

What physicists refer to as space is neither void nor vacuum but consists of energy in the form of a continuous electromagnetic ether, extending indefinitely, without limit, without edges or borders farther than the eye can see, even with the most powerful instruments. The field is fixed and is, in the relativistic sense, a privileged prime reference frame. It is, however, fluid, elastic, and subject to the same internal movements, currents, turbulence, and topological defects as any elastic medium. This ether pervades all of space, as evidenced by its carriage of all electromagnetic phenomena to and from its farthest limits as well as by the constant velocity of that radiation.

 Axiom 2

All perceptible entities in the universe, that is, all objects, events, and phenomena, at whatever scale, consist of organized, coherent concentrations and distortions of that energy field, in patterns governed by a simple set of rules.

There are no particles, no “uncutable” first beginnings, no atoms, no protons, neutrons, electrons, quarks, neutrinos, bosons, gluons; again, no “particles.” There is only energy, flowing through and within the cosmos. Its formation into concentrations of various size, intensity, and complexity gives rise to imaginings of entities of a particulate nature.

 Axiom 3

The region we call the universe is an aggregation of those concentrations, of size and complexity ranging from submicroscopic entities to stars, galaxies and clusters of galaxies, all resulting from the same set of rules.

All of reality that we perceive is made up in its entirety of these complex coherent organizations of energy, these “condensations of the ether” as Einstein called them, resulting from reverberation, reinforcement, resonance and phase transitions in the medium. In fact, all identifiable components of reality, objects, events, and phenomena, consist of coherent deformations of the ether, from the smallest entities we can identify, through those that make up what we have called the “zone of middle dimensions,” out to the most distant and immense features of the cosmos, the stars, quasars, galaxies, and clusters of the astronomers. The presence of these high energy-density concentrations generates larger regions of distortion in the ether, mistakenly identified  as mysterious “dark matter,” or Einstein’s metaphorical “curvature of spacetime.”

Axiom 4

All naturally occurring entities are identifiable by their roughness, that is, their forms, shapes, arrangement, and motion are neither regular nor smooth.

Left to its own devices nature is rough, not smooth. The Platonic ideal of perfect smoothness is not attained in nature. Nature is irregular, not ordered. It is random, not predictable. No two snowflakes are identical, no two galaxies. The universe is neither homogenous nor isotropic. This “cosmological principal” is a false assumption, invented for the convenience of mathematics. Nature is analog, only mathematics is digital.

Axiom 5

At all scales everything in nature is in continuous vibratory motion, nothing is still.

At all scales everything in the universe is in motion, both internally in all its component parts and externally in relation to the fixed frame of the ether and all other perceptible entities. This motion is essential to our perception, which functions only by the detection of differences. Turbulence is a necessary condition of that motion. Without it can occur none of the essential interactions of reverberation, reinforcement and resonance out of which emerge the coherent concentrations of energy which make up the universe as we know it.

All of these axioms are confirmable by direct observation and examination here in the real world. And all of this is part of what I now realize has been the object of my efforts so far and that is to tease out the origins and structure of the world (and the universe) around me; first, the universe, then this thing we call life, and finally the ultimate puzzle, that of consciousness. In particular, that part of consciousness I have chosen to call “the contemplative mind,” the part that makes it possible to imagine, dream, and construct our mental models of that world outside of ourselves. It makes sense to me, so far.

Charles Scurlock 7/7/2019

About Charles Scurlock

Charles is a recently retired architect/planner and generalist problem-solver with a lifelong interest in science, physics, and cosmology, and the workings of the human mind. He has started this blog in the interest of sharing his ideas with others of like-(or not so like) minds.
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