Sunday, 15 January 2012

Letting the madness out a little at a time.

My head hurts. I've been trying to work out what we'd see if a four-dimensional being protruded into our three-dimensional world. Starting from the point of view of a two-dimensional creature who meets a three-dimensional one (Edwin Abbot's 'Flatland' the text of which is probably free somewhere because it's out of copyright) and extraoplating that creature's 2D image of a 3D creature into a 3D observation of a 4D one.

It could appear and disappear simply by making use of a spatial dimension we can't access, but when it was here, what would we see? I have a feeling it would look like what we generally refer to as a ghost. As to specific appearance, well since it has total control over what it pokes into our dimension, it could appear any way it wants.

If I can get this little story written it should infuriate everyone of every religion everywhere. It's not an atheist tract, it's even worse than that, it's an entirely new religion that binds them all together while simultaneously denying the reality of all religions, including itself.. If this doesn't get me a nasty letter from the Pope, nothing will.

Once it's out I'll have to be on my guard against the Secret Ninja Jehovah's Witnesses. They say the last thing anyone hears is a breathy voice...

I had another go at getting the cartoons onto Kindle. Still no luck. These old ones might have to be restricted to print-only and a new set drawn specifically for the Kindle screen size. They could work as PDF on a computer screen but I don't think they'll work on little E-readers.

Something occurred to me. I have always maintained, in smoking-related arguments with the religious, that the Holy Books say nothing about smoking. They don't say you can, but they don't say you can't. The Government won't let you smoke in a church, but God doesn't mind. So who is the higher authority?

I was wrong. The Bible mentions smoking. A lot.

Leviticus 1:13 : He is to wash the inner parts and the legs with water, and the priest is to bring all of it and burn it on the altar. It is a burnt offering, an offering made by fire, an aroma pleasing to the LORD.

Leviticus 1:17: He shall tear it open by the wings, not severing it completely, and then the priest shall burn it on the wood that is on the fire on the altar. It is a burnt offering, an offering made by fire, an aroma pleasing to the LORD.

Leviticus 2:2 : and take it to Aaron's sons the priests. The priest shall take a handful of the fine flour and oil, together with all the incense, and burn this as a memorial portion on the altar, an offering made by fire,
an aroma pleasing to the LORD.

There is a long list of these available. It seems that God likes the smell of something burning, which means those who object to the smell of smoke are heretics and must be cast out.Perhaps we should torture them a little first.

There is more:

Leviticus 3:16: The priest shall burn them on the altar as food, an offering made by fire, a pleasing aroma. All the fat is the Lord's.

Numbers 15:7: and a third of a hin of wine as a drink offering. Offer it as an aroma pleasing to the LORD.

So God likes a smoke, a drink and some fatty food. If it's good enough for God, then who am I to argue?

No wonder the Righteous want God banned. He's setting a bad example to us all.


Priest said...

In my days as thurrifer they used to call Holy Smoke. You couldn't see across the choir, so thick I laid it on. Seen that WW I painting "The Retreat from Mons"? That was the communion process in my Holy Smoking days.

Furor Teutonicus said...

Sure they mention salt someweher in there as well. Something about "Sod-em-all and Gonnoreah, and a column of salt." ???

mrs.raft said...

Considering that fire ceremonies and incense burning are such common themes all over the Old World, it is very surpising that we had to wait for someone to suggest rolling up leaves and setting light to them, drawing the smoke through the bundle and breathing it that way.

I'm assuming this has to do with the particular plants but really, it was very slow of us to not think of it much earlier. 

Anon said...

Grant Morrison's graphic novel The Invisibles has some good ideas for four-dimensional beings intruding into our three-dimensional world. It looks like a big wobbly blob of mirror-like fluid.

Amusing Bunni said...

The Bible has LOTS of great, common sense quotes.  That is why the jerks want to ban it.

RalphMusgrave said...

A three dimensional object which intrudes on a two dimensional world would appear and then disappear as it passed through the two dimensional universe. So the question is: is there anything in our universe that appears and then disappears? Answer is yes: subatomic particles in outer space. And now I'm about to disappear. Cherio.

ViewfromtheSolent said...

Haven't read Flatland, but I'd expect a 4-d object passing through 3-d space to alter it's shape and size on the way through. Think of a 3-d object passing through a 2-d surface. What you get is a continually changing cross-section of the 3-d thing. (unless it's very simple, like an orthoganal cylinder). So the equivalent would be a continually changing 3-d "cross-section".

ViewfromtheSolent said...

Damn. "orthogonal".
A second thought.  If you want a ghostly figure, would a "shadow" fit the story?
In the same way that a 3d object produces a shadow on a surface, by extrapolation a 4d object would cast a 3d shadow in our world. Visible, changing shape, but not tangible.

Captain Ranty said...

Genesis 22: "...and I give you all the plants, the animals, fishes of the sea to ingest....".

All the plants would include tobacco.



Chaledon said...

Smoking in church was always confined to incense.

Gkayser30 said...

Time is also a 'dimension'.

To a critter that exists in a faster or slower time dimension, we will be perceived very differently.

To us, they would either be a sort of static thing or else the zip of the subatomic particle.

They might make no sense to us, sort of like music that has been greatly slowed or speeded up.

Anyway, what you perceive is a 'subjective' experience and not always valid. Optical illusions are fun; but, what if ALL of our reality is an optical illusion?

Gary K.

junican41 said...

Since there is nothing in nature which, spatially, has anything other than three dimensions, the only possibility is a combination of two three dimensional entities, giving the possibility of three times three equals nine dimensions. That might be worth playing with!

Gkayser30 said...

Dear J,
I believe that when looking into 'string theory' folks have estimated that there are about 11 separate dimensions.

I could not try to guess how that might be done.
Gary K.

Legiron said...

Ah, you mean the nature our senses allow us to perceive ;)

If there is a fourth spatial dimension we would not be able to see it. We can't even point in that direction.

Second-hand smoke can use that dimension to travel through walls and across continents. I bet I can convince an antismoker of that. Next one I meet gets it.

Legiron said...

There was a nature program some years back where researchers tagged a starfish in Antarctica. One year later, they revisited the site. The starfish had moved about six inches. It's cold-blooded so its metabolism was running incredibly slowly.

I always thought that from the starfish's point of view, it was a case of whoosh - "What was that?" Whoosh - "There it is again".

Legiron said...

Oh yes - serious science has already postulated that the entirely of reality is a hologram projected from the edge of the universe. I should have been a physicist, they must get the best booze and the strongest drugs.

Legiron said...

I haven't been in many but I recall that nobody ever needed to be told not to smoke. It was just 'not the done thing'.

Now they have to have signs to stop people doing what nobody did anyway. One day a big finger will poke through the roof and a voice will boom 'Where is the odour that is pleasing to Me? Smoke or be smitten, mortals'.

When I die, if I get to meet Him on the way to Hell, I'm going to suggest it.

Legiron said...

It would include Certain Other Plants too.

Legiron said...

Shadow is perfect. It explains why ghosts can;t do any harm - they're just the shadow of the creature, not the creature itself.

Legiron said...

There have been reports of UFO-like things that change shape as they move. Of course, the 4D thing might not be in the sky in its world. It might just be in the sky from our perspective. And those insane aerobatics would be easy if they were just 'a finger poking in'.

There is much to play with in this theory...

Legiron said...

Neutrinos are getting the dimension-hopping tag lately. It's the only way to explain the faster-than-light observations.

Well, there is another possible explanation but it means someone buggered up a very expensive experiment and nobody is going to mention that.

Legiron said...

It also has the words to this song  -

- in the book of Ecclesiastes. Yes, the Bible predicted the Byrds! Impressive.

Legiron said...

Ah, but the leaves it works best with weren't in Europe.

Cabbage just isn't the same.

Legiron said...

I'm going to have to get hold of some of these graphic novels. There are some good ones out there. The nearest I have to such a thing is 'Fat Freddy's Cat'

Amusing Bunni said...

Good one, Leggy, I think the Byrds copies the Bible, but at least they were reading it. ;-)

Furor Teutonicus said...

As far as Dimensions go, try "Warped passages. Unraveling the mysteries of the Universe", by Lisa Randall. (Harper Collins 2005).

Seriously good bed time reading.

Anon said...

I can recommend The Invisibles and Transmetropolitan in their entirety (especially the Invisibles for it's portrayal of the Righteous), but they're both ones with a definite beginning, middle and end. Preacher is another good'un as far as warped humour goes.

mrs.raft said...

The original Camberwell Carrots were murder to keep alight.

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