Are There More Than Three Dimensions?
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Are There More Than Three Dimensions?

2011, Science  -   133 Comments
Ratings: 7.80/10 from 127 users.

Are There More Than Three Dimensions? For most of our history, we've rested easy in the notion that there were three dimensions that have existed throughout time: length, width and height. Ah, the good old days. In the early 20th century, Hermann Minkowski and Albert Einstein connected our comfortable three dimensions with a fourth, time, defining special relativity using a space-time continuum.

This kind of worked, but still didn't explain a troublesome new theory of gravity called quantum mechanics that arose around the same time Minkowski and Einstein were working on their theories. Quantum mechanics had its own rules that contradicted the concepts behind the space-time continuum. Scientists treated this incompatibility like the weather for decades, discussing it but not really doing anything about it.

While higher theoretical dimensions began with Descartes in the 1600s, in the 1970s string theory expanded on this idea as physicists attempted to tie everything together in one elegant explanation of the universe. Variations of string theory require the existence of up to eleven dimensions and a slew of universes, with our universe forming a three-dimensional membrane floating around some higher-dimensional donut. According to this theory, each point in space has six higher dimensions wrapped up in super-tiny geometries called Calibi-Yau Manifolds.

One recent string theory suggests that the reason we only experience the three spatial dimensions is that all universes with higher dimensions got into some cosmic car accident and destroyed each other, leaving our measly three-dimensional brane untouched.

List of all episodes here: Through The Wormhole.

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2 years ago

It's maybe like color. You can't explain a color to a person born blind.

3 years ago

It's not opening...

5 years ago

FYI All the through the wormhole docs are paywalled!

Sonny Corbi
7 years ago

Today 12-08-2015

I happened upon the above text this evening - This gave real substance to me (my ego, I suppose) It has made me feel as though I was sucked up by the YouTube cesspool - In scanning the above comments I feel as though I have successfully completed rehab and now back to TDF where consciousness manifest concept in real time -

9 years ago

if there is a dimension that has a sense of smell then there will be a dimension that has no sense of smell. Gravity could be another dimension. Envision a place where the laws of gravity do not apply. Artificial intelligence when it arrives could create another reality or dimension for mankind.

10 years ago

Yes other dimensions exist,they are the ones we can't experience through our natural senses.

Nic Petrykowski
11 years ago

I think we have too many dimensions to deal with already. lol

11 years ago

If that woman had no depth perception until that day when she got into the car....why the hell was she getting into a car in the first place??

11 years ago

As mankind grew the world became more than just 3 dimensions. when we started measuring time we added 1 more dimension never realizing we were already moving and not having a static position as we move we now have 5 dimensions. (length width height time motion) We can smell. Some creatures cannot so is that not another dimension? I say it is. Now we are up to five. We have knowledge of time as in the past. So we are moving through time also. So would we be able to consider that the past is another dimension. There is light could there be a dimension without light yes there could be but we have light. maybe we are up to six...ANY COMMENTS

Terrence O'Hara
11 years ago

Has anyone ever attempted at looking at a combination of the Single or One Dimension theory (As opposed to multi-dimensions) and the theory that time is a series of slices made up of "now" moments?

11 years ago

Taking time as the 4th dimension is a tool that allows us to describe MOTION in 3-Dimensions in a meaningful and useful way, i.e. Einstein’s General and Special Relativity.

A different slant on the problem is to consider that there are more than 3 spatial dimensions; that the observable is a 3 dimensional manifestation of a higher dimensional spatial reality. A 3-D shadow projected from a higher spatial reality onto the observed 3 spatial dimensions. Just like your 3-D body gets projected onto the ground as a 2-D shadow, the hypothesis is that a 4-D object gets projected onto the observable 3-D world and in fact this idea can cascade down through any number of higher spatial dimensions.

A stream of unexplainable and at present unobservable causes that affect our sensory reality and a beautiful hypothesis that merits further investigation and testing for validity.

Scientific creativity and testability of ANY intuitive and seemingly plausible (and even the odd implausible) hypothesis are valid avenues of research even if there is an affirmation in the negative. We learn from our mistakes; cross erroneous ideas of the ‘list’ of possible truths and eventually construct a piece by piece jigsaw that describes the visible world to a high degree of accuracy. Agree or disagree, rightly or wrongly, that is the scientific approach and it is VERY effective.

11 years ago

"A tensor is the ratio of the modulus of the quaternion stretched over the vector. Now, if we take the set of nonlinear, partial differential equations formulated by the prophesied Einstein, for his GR, finding solutions compatible with the Rest-State Value-Set Space, V, provided for above, and substitute, we arrive at the electro-magnetic-gravitic unification formulation."
~ Newly discovered text in the Dead Sea Scrolls


11 years ago


Daniel Robinson
11 years ago

Do not watch this when you're high!

11 years ago

The bible didn't mention anything about another dimension.. so it must not be true.

11 years ago

Anyone who has ever had a problem with ants inside their home knows just how maddening it can be. They're everywhere you look. That's all you see.

Ants. Ants. Ants.

Not one of those ants has ever seen you, and not one of us has ever seen...


11 years ago

Well, I'm off to find out whatever I can, or can understand, about the fox, Dr. Laura Mersini-Houghton, and her work. And I'll love it, too, if one day her ideas turn out to take precedence. Especially in this field, with this problem, wouldn't it be satisfying if a woman succeeded where all the boys couldn't?

11 years ago

I am back from StarbellyJam, The Coup and DJ Pam the Funkstress gets my 2 thumbs up for making every one Dance.
Haven't watched a doc yet but have read quite a few posts. I see humour was in the air. A lot of good read.
@Pysmythe...hadn't noticed you coming on this site very often yet. You read well, good thinking threads. @Waldo and made it interesting for me to be a student of life.
Oz and Achems...hard to disagree with good sense

11 years ago

Yes, duh... time is the fourth. But all of it is a failure of language to covet complex ideas and math isn't much better.

11 years ago

Mankind does not live in 3 dimensions but rather 4 dimensions that we are aware of. The fourth dimension is time. Now knowing that "time" is our fourth dimension there is NO WAY that the particle collider in Europe is going to find other dimensions.

Why? Because you cannot find other dimensions by smashing together sub atomic particles. It is never going to happen.

Example? By smashing together sub atomic particles have the researchers discovered the fourth dimension of time? No they have not.

Therefore you cannot discover other dimensions by smashing together sub atomic particles.

Other dimensions are just just that other dimensions.

Now the real question is "Other dimensions of what?"

Our physical world consists of three physical dimensions. Up & Down, Left & Right, Forward and Backward. The fourth dimension is time. Yesterday - Today - Tomorrow.

No matter what experiment you conduct in 3D space you cannot discover the dimension of "time". Time is a dimension that is experienced by life.

Another dimension that we may be aware of is the "Spiritual Dimension". The "Spiritual Dimension" is the fifth dimension that governs our reality and existence.

This dimension exists based on human experience and from the evidence time and distance (space) do not exist in the way we understand it in our 3D reality.

To learn more about this "spiritual dimension" watch the documentary "Life After Life" at this site.

We cannot see the spiritual intelligence in this dimension, but it exists none-the-less.

What is even more interesting is that evidence is gradually being accumulated that ties our physical dimension with this spiritual dimension.
Documentaries Life After Life & Previous Lives of Children.

Life is only possible because of this "Spiritual Dimension" of which we are a part.

Finding other dimensions is very difficult because they contain properties that are completely foreign to our senses. Even though they may exist we may be unable to sense them or we may be unable to believe what is possible.

For instance the "Spiritual Dimension" is based on the reports brought back from people who have died and come back to life throughout time. There is an intelligence in the universe that exists in its own dimension. (See Life After Life)

This "Spiritual Dimension" consists of pure love based on the reports. The universal intelligence in this dimension is able to send down spirits that somehow fuse with biological life to create conscience life. Human beings are one aspect of this type of biological-spiritual life that exists on the earth.

Would scientists consider "Spiritual Dimension" as a dimension? No because they have never seen anything like it before. And that is the problem with searching for other dimensions. The dimension of "Time" is completely unlike the physical dimensions of "Up Down - Right Left - Forward Backward".

The "Spiritual Dimension" is also unlike anything we know. Time and distance are fused into one. Reports are that a spirit can be in all places at once, aware but without form. Distance and time have no meaning in this dimension. Love and connectedness do have value in this dimension though.

The "Spiritual Dimension" can best be described as the software dimension of the universe. Without it conscience life cannot exist. Human bodies are the biological hardware. The spiritual aspect is the software that makes consciousness possible.

Don't laugh at this idea. More and more evidence is being gathered around the world that suggests that human memories can exist outside of the body in the "Spiritual Dimension". Goggle search "Previous lives of Children" to learn more.

The universe is truly an interesting place to live.

Another interesting aspect of our universe is that the general rule is for pure energy to become more and more complex over time. Both in the form of biological and non biological life. Although this has never been written down in the text books of science stop and think about it for a moment.

All organic life as we know it has grown more complex over time. All inorganic life such as computers and software have also grown more complex over time. Therefore the general rule for our universe / dimension is that all pure energy becomes more and more complex until it becomes self aware and trys to understand itself.

11 years ago

I find it fascinating that you guys are so very into universal 'holes'. (lol)

I'm off to beddy-byes!


11 years ago

i bet before we find out about some of the biggest fundamental questions of todays, we will probably already have learned from someone who spent millions of years finding out already

11 years ago

Sometimes I get the impression that these poor, hard-working physicists may not have a real answer for gravity and its implications on the subatomic level until they have very strong A.I. to help them. So many of them have been chipping away at the problem for so long now, and there are so many different theories... I get reminded, too, of Feynman's statement that "Nobody really understands Quantum Mechanics." When I'm at my most cynical (and selfish) I get a little worried that these very high-quality minds are slaving away in pursuit of an equation that can never be found, for some reason, and wonder what the rest of us may be losing as a result. But I guess knowing a question couldn't be answered would be better than never having tried to answer it; it would be its own answer, however disappointing and costly, if it ever could come to such an extreme. But mostly I'm anxious that a working Standard Model fully incorporating gravity with the other three fundamental forces will be found in my lifetime; I have a feeling, borne out by the immense amount of work being put into it, that, if it happens, the implications are going to radically change more than just our views yet again. Since new technologies arise out of scientific theories, who knows what benefits might one day result from having such answers?

11 years ago

Space travel is, very likely, the only way all these questions and theories can be answered; there is not enough room spatially or mass and energy on this planet to create, focus and sustain the energies that we need to delve deeper into nature. Moreover, there is a need for vacuums so we can minimise contamination arising from foreign particles and light/noise pollution, with the increasing intricacy of our experiments. It's just a waste of time attempting it here because you can only get so far, it all lies with conquering space or at least partially. What we are seeing now, in the science world, is the decline of practical experimentation, science is slowly becoming guilty of what is criticised of religion. We seem to be getting scientists (Priests?) telling us about theories and concepts so out of reach and scope that they might as well be divine and supernatural - modern science is starting to feel like real cool stories with a real lack of evidence (Bible anyone?).

Though, another way of experimentation is computers. However, these devices need to be fast enough to compute and visualise reality itself: all the particles, fields, forces, vibrations, dimensions, etc, which coalesce in a 1m x 1m x 1m cube of actual space-time. But then to achieve this you are going to need a machine as big as a galaxy! Try rendering an animation on today's computers ...

I kind of get pissed off when companies like Apple spend all their time making gadgets which further intrench us, no offence, in our pointless niggles of life.

We should ease off all the philosophical theories that are being bashed about by physicists and focus every gram of scientific thought in at least giving us a more practical application of space travel, colonisation and the production of anti-matter and nuclear fusion - that is the key to answering these deep questions. One step back into practical reality will take us two steps forward into the theoretical. I really believe in science but I am scared about where all the money and innovation is going.

Where is the space race?

11 years ago

@ Shafiq Ahmed

I know what you mean. However, even if we did solve the questions we have now doing so would only create that many more. Or at least I hope it would, it is the passion of discovery and exploration that I covet as much as the answers I suppose. I also think that because real science requires such brutal honesty, realism, discipline, and such a dogged pursuit of simplicity to be worth anything it brings out our best qualities. Not that all science is good science by a long shot, or that pettiness and ego do not rear there ugly heads as well, they do. But the scientific method uncorrupted by the business, bureaucracy, or ego that has grown up around it is beautiful.

@ Vlatko or anyone that can help

I am experiencing issues periodically when trying to respond to the top most post. About half the time it places my reply at the top as a new sub thread. My cursor also periodically disappears and the scroll function keeps going nuts all on it own no matter which post I am responding to. If any one knows what this is or how to stop it I would really appreciate the help.

Shafiq Ahmed
11 years ago

One dimension or nine? We are just at the starting line of a marathon of modern physics/science. If our own created rigorously building destruction to the earth allows us to even complete quarter of this marathon, we would certainly be able to answer many fundamental questions currently unanswerable. I presume, some of the questions would not take more than twenty or thirty years but at the same time I have a great great fear that our own created mess will win the race and the marathon will be finished for us, i.e: destruction of the earth by us before the science explores the fundamental questions about the universe and our selves.

11 years ago

Ice and steam are made up of the same molecular structure yet have very different forms as is energy and mass

11 years ago

Good basic stuff, If you want to go more in depth, check out Brian Greene's books, "the elegant universe"..."the fabric of the cosmos"...and his latest book, "the hidden reality"

11 years ago

I'm going to love this video, and not understand a thing about it.