My mind was blown this morning when I found this article after googling “Why does time slow down at the speed of light?”
But it turns out that time doesn’t slow down at the speed of light, it doesn’t exist at all! The article goes on to say that “Everything in the Universe travels at light speed. Always.” Only it is our combined speed through both space and time that is considered. The faster you travel through space, the slower you travel through time.
I found another article on the topic of light speed that really got my mind melting. It’s a blog post on the site ‘Ask A Mathematician‘ Speaking about relativity it states the following:
“Whenever there’s a “time effect” there’s a “distance effect” as well, and in this case we find that infinite time dilation (no time for photons) goes hand in hand with infinite length contraction (there’s no distance to the destination).”
Since time and distance go hand in hand not only does the photon not experience time, it does not experience distance either!
From the perspective of the photon it is everywhere in the universe at the same time!
If a photon does not experience time nor distance then they also could not have had a beginning. Photon’s must have always existed. And without a beginning, there will be no end. At least from the photon’s point of view. We may well see a big crunch (not literally of course), and then a subsequent big bang. But this can mean nothing to the eternal photon.
What exactly does it mean to not experience time? Does it mean to be frozen at a particular point in time? We have all heard the story of the man who left earth travelling near the speed of light for 3 months only to return and everyone is 50 years older. This seems to hint that time is getting compressed.
However, in the distance analogy above I inferred that to not experience distance means that the photon is everywhere. So if the photon does not experience time, is it not in every time rather than a single, infinitely compressed point?
In spirituality we often speak of the light of consciousness. It is that part of your true self that doesn’t experience time, and doesn’t experience distance, but it is the pure witness to both.
Is there a link between this light of consciousness and this eternal photon light described above or is this analogy meant purely metaphorically?
Perhaps they are mirrors of each other. As photon light illuminates the universe it is reflected as a form through perception within my consciousness. But does it do more than that?
To perceive an object, or form, the light first enters our eyes, shapes our minds, and then creates an image.
Think about it for a moment. This series of eternal photons that exist everywhere, and at every time, has penetrated our bodies and shaped our perception of absolutely everything!!!
This certainly hints at much bigger things about light than just physical properties. When Eckhart Tolle underwent his transformation one of his first realizations was that there was much more to light than we could ever imagine.
I am drawn to think that light may be the ultimate source of our true selves, of infinite wisdom, and of peace and joy. Jesus said “I am the light of the world”. And if he was, then we all must be.