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I am originally from India. I am settled in United States since 1969. I turned 65 in June 2011. I am working as Production Systems Analyst. I love mathematics, philosophy and clarity in thinking.

Einstein 1938: Light Spectra

Reference: Evolution of Physics

This paper presents Chapter IV section 4 from the book THE EVOLUTION OF PHYSICS by A. EINSTEIN and L. INFELD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by Simon and Schuster, New York (1942).

The paragraphs of the original material (in black) are accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.  Feedback on these comments is appreciated.

The heading below is linked to the original materials.


Light Spectra

We already know that all matter is built of only a few kinds of particles. Electrons were the first elementary particles of matter to be discovered. But electrons are also the elementary quanta of negative electricity. We learned furthermore that some phenomena force us to assume that light is composed of elementary light quanta, differing for different wave-lengths. Before proceeding we must discuss some physical phenomena in which matter as well as radiation plays an essential role.

The sun emits radiation which can be split into its components by a prism. The continuous spectrum of the sun can thus be obtained. Every wave-length between the two ends of the visible spectrum is represented. Let us take another example. It was previously mentioned that sodium when incandescent emits homogeneous light, light of one colour or one wave-length. If incandescent sodium is placed before the prism, we see only one yellow line. In general, if a radiating body is placed before the prism, then the light it emits is split up into its components, revealing the spectrum characteristic of the emitting body.

The discharge of electricity in a tube containing gas produces a source of light such as seen in the neon tubes used for luminous advertisements. Suppose such a tube is placed before a spectroscope. The spectroscope is an instrument which acts like a prism, but with much greater accuracy and sensitiveness; it splits light into its components, that is, it analyses it. Light from the sun, seen through a spectroscope, gives a continuous spectrum; all wave-lengths are represented in it. If, however, the source of light is a gas through which a current of electricity passes, the spectrum is of a different character. Instead of the continuous, multi-coloured design of the sun’s spectrum, bright, separated stripes appear on a continuous dark background. Every stripe, if it is very narrow, corresponds to a definite colour or, in the language of the wave theory, to a definite wavelength. For example, if twenty lines are visible in the spectrum, each of them will be designated by one of twenty numbers expressing the corresponding wavelength. The vapours of the various elements possess different systems of lines, and thus different combinations of numbers designating the wave-lengths composing the emitted light spectrum. No two elements have identical systems of stripes in their characteristic spectra, just as no two persons have exactly identical finger-prints. As a catalogue of these lines was worked out by physicists, the existence of laws gradually became evident, and it was possible to replace some of the columns of seemingly disconnected numbers expressing the length of the various waves by one simple mathematical formula.

All that has just been said can now be translated into the photon language. The stripes correspond to certain definite wave-lengths or, in other words, to photons with a definite energy. Luminous gases do not, therefore, emit photons with all possible energies, but only those characteristic of the substance. Reality again limits the wealth of possibilities.

Atoms of a particular element, say, hydrogen, can emit only photons with definite energies. Only the emission of definite energy quanta is permissible, all others being prohibited. Imagine, for the sake of simplicity, that some element emits only one line, that is, photons of a quite definite energy. The atom is richer in energy before the emission and poorer afterwards. From the energy principle it must follow that the energy level of an atom is higher before emission and lower afterwards, and that the difference between the two levels must be equal to the energy of the emitted photon. Thus the fact that an atom of a certain element emits radiation of one wave-length only, that is photons of a definite energy only, could be expressed differently: only two energy levels are permissible in an atom of this element and the emission of a photon corresponds to the transition of the atom from the higher to the lower energy level.

But more than one line appears in the spectra of the elements, as a rule. The photons emitted correspond to many energies and not to one only. Or, in other words, we must assume that many energy levels are allowed in an atom and that the emission of a photon corresponds to the transition of the atom from a higher energy level to a lower one. But it is essential that not every energy level should be permitted, since not every wave-length, not every photon-energy, appears in the spectra of an element. Instead of saying that some definite lines, some definite wave-lengths, belong to the spectrum of every atom, we can say that every atom has some definite energy levels, and that the emission of light quanta is associated with the transition of the atom from one energy level to another. The energy levels are, as a rule, not continuous but discontinuous. Again we see that the possibilities are restricted by reality.

It was Bohr who showed for the first time why just these and no other lines appear in the spectra. His theory, formulated twenty-five years ago, draws a picture of the atom from which, at any rate in simple cases, the spectra of the elements can be calculated and the apparently dull and unrelated numbers are suddenly made coherent in the light of the theory.

Bohr’s theory forms an intermediate step toward a deeper and more general theory, called the wave or quantum mechanics. It is our aim in these last pages to characterize the principal ideas of this theory. Before doing so, we must mention one more theoretical and experimental result of a more special character.

Our visible spectrum begins with a certain wavelength for the violet colour and ends with a certain wave-length for the red colour. Or, in other words, the energies of the photons in the visible spectrum are always enclosed within the limits formed by the photon energies of the violet and red lights. This limitation is, of course, only a property of the human eye. If the difference in energy of some of the energy levels is sufficiently great, then an ultraviolet photon will be sent out, giving a line beyond the visible spectrum. Its presence cannot be detected by the naked eye; a photographic plate must be used.

X-rays are also composed of photons of a much greater energy than those of visible light, or in other words, their wave-lengths are much smaller, thousands of times smaller in fact, than those of visible light.

But is it possible to determine such small wavelengths experimentally? It was difficult enough to do so for ordinary light. We had to have small obstacles or small apertures. Two pinholes very near to each other, showing diffraction for ordinary light, would have to be many thousands of times smaller and closer together to show diffraction for X-rays.

How then can we measure the wave-lengths of these rays? Nature herself comes to our aid.

A crystal is a conglomeration of atoms arranged at very short distances from each other on a perfectly regular plan. Our drawing shows a simple model of the structure of a crystal. Instead of minute apertures, there are extremely small obstacles formed by the atoms of the element, arranged very close to each other in absolutely regular order. The distances between the atoms, as found from the theory of the crystal structure, are so small that they might be expected to show the effect of diffraction for X-rays. Experiment proved that it is, in fact, possible to diffract the X-ray wave by means of these closely packed obstacles disposed in the regular three-dimensional arrangement occurring in a crystal.

Suppose that a beam of X-rays falls upon a crystal and, after passing through it, is recorded on a photographic plate. The plate then shows the diffraction pattern. Various methods have been used to study the X-ray spectra, to deduce data concerning the wavelength from the diffraction pattern. What has been said here in a few words would fill volumes if all theoretical and experimental details were set forth. In Plate III we give only one diffraction pattern obtained by one of the various methods. We again see the dark and light rings so characteristic of the wave theory. In the centre the non-diffracted ray is visible. If the crystal were not brought between the X-rays and the photographic plate, only the light spot in the centre would be seen. From photographs of this kind the wave-lengths of the X-ray spectra can be calculated and, on the other hand, if the wave-length is known, conclusions can be drawn about the structure of the crystal.



If a radiating body is placed before the prism, then the light it emits is split up into its components, revealing the spectrum characteristic of the emitting body. The spectrum of the light from the Sun is continuous throughout the visible range. Most elements, however, emit light that produce discrete lines as their spectra.

Each spectral line is produced by a light of a characteristic wavelength. It was possible to express these wavelengths through one simple mathematical formula. These wavelengths could be related to the energy of corresponding photons; and from there to characteristic energy levels of atoms emitting those photons. From this data, Bohr could then develop a model of the atom.

Photons of energies beyond the visible spectra also exist, such as, those of x-rays. Ingenious experiments have been devised to measure the energy of such photons.


OT 1948: Prenatal, Birth and Infant Engrams

Reference: DIANETICS: The Original Thesis

This paper presents Chapter 15 from the book DIANETICS: THE ORIGINAL THESIS by L. RON HUBBARD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by The Hubbard Dianetic Foundation, Inc. (1948).

The paragraphs of the original material (in black) are accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.  Feedback on these comments is appreciated.

The heading below is linked to the original materials.


Prenatal, Birth and Infant Engrams

The human mind and the human anatomy are enormously more powerful and resilient than has commonly been supposed. Only incidents of the greatest magnitude in physical pain and hostile content are sufficient to aberrate a mind.

It takes quite a shock to aberrate the mind.

The ability of the mind to store data can scarcely be overrated. In early life before sound is analyzed as speech a human being receives and stores exact impressions of everything which occurs. At some future date, when similar perceptics are encountered, the reactive mind re-analyzes—on the basis of identities only—the content of the early mind. This becomes the foundation of the post-conception personality. The actual personality in the individual is powerful and very difficult to aberrate. Unlike animals which can be driven mad by minor mechanisms of experimental psychology, a man must be most severely handled before he begins to show any signs of derangement. That derangement proceeds from the ability of the reactive mind to store perceptions from the earliest moments of existence and retain them on either the analytical or the reactive plane for future reference.

The mental matrix originates from DNA like all other aspects of a human baby. Exact impressions do not exist in the mental matrix as that takes more storage. Exact impressions exist only in perceptions before they get assimilated in the mental matrix as perceptual elements. This assimilation minimizes storage by storing only the original of each perceptual element. New associations of these perceptual elements are made with later experiences and, thus, new meanings are acquired be older perceptions. The personality of the person develops as the mental matrix develops.

The basic personality does not proceed from engrams, and the dynamics of the individual are impeded not enhanced by engrams. The dynamics are entirely separate and are as native to the individual as his basic personality, of which they are a part.

The basic personality of the individual, and his dynamics, are the expressions of the assimilated mental matrix.

Information falls into two categories: the educational or experience level, banked and available to the analytical mind on at least its deeper levels; and aberrational, or data stored in the reactive mind and often used but never reached by the analytical mind, save through auditing. There would seem to be two types of recording. The first is cellular recording in which the cells would seem to store data. In that cells in procreating become themselves again—which is to say that when cell A divides, both halves are still cell A—cellular intelligence is not lost. Personal identity is duplicated. In the case of individual men, procreation is far more complex and individual identity is lost—the son is not the father but a genetic composite of vast numbers of ancestors.

The assimilated matrix contains nodes of unassimilated shocks. Circuits passing through such nodes are influenced more by the singular content of the shock than by the logic of the assimilated matrix. This mental matrix extends into the cellular matrix of the person. Combinations of it are passed to successive generations through DNA.

The cells of the human being shortly after conception are capable of enormous perceptic and retentive power. After a very short time in the womb, the brain and nervous system are already operating. From then until birth the human being is apparently capable of computations of a rather complex nature on the analytical mind level. Far more certainly he retains information on the reactive level.

The mental matrix starts forming soon after conception, and continues to develop during the prenatal period in the womb.

Fear, pain, and unconsciousness extend the range of perception of the individual. When the human being in the womb is injured his senses extend so as to record sounds outside the mother’s body. He records them so well that their precise nature is stored for future reference. The human being in the womb responds exactly as it does after birth to the receipt of engrams, storing the data with precision and reacting to it.

Many perceptions (sound, pressure, etc.) from outside the womb reach the rapidly developing mental-cellular matrix and become part of it, especially when there is shock and injury.

The repair facilities available to a human being before birth are greatly enhanced by the presence of ample connective tissue, oxygen and sustenance. These repair facilities are unimaginably great so that a prenatal human being can be severely torn and ripped without becoming structurally deficient. It does, however, receive engrams and these are subject to restimulation. In many cases of attempted abortions it was found that large sections of the prenatal human being’s brain could apparently be injured without the brain being deficient or even scarred after birth. These repair facilities do not however lessen the extreme severity of the engrams which can be received by the prenatal human being. The word foetus is dropped at this point and it is advised that it should be dropped from the language as a description of a pre-birth human being. Insufficient evidence is at hand to make an outright declaration that attempted abortions are responsible for the bulk of our criminal and insane aberrees. But according to the cases at hand the attempted abortion must be accounted responsible for the majority.

Hubbard, in his research, found many instances of engrams from the prenatal period generated by attempted abortions.

The attempted abortion is the most serious aberration producer. So exact is the recording of the pre-birth human being that the reactive mind makes no errors in recognizing its enemies after birth. The mind becomes aberrated in having to depend upon these same enemies for the ordinary sustenance of life while the child is a helpless infant. The diagnosis of a prenatal case is relatively simple. Nearly all preclears will be found to have at least one prenatal engram and the case will not solve unless that prenatal is reached and exhausted.

The dianeticist can usually establish the attempted abortion preclear by an investigation of the conduct of the infant and child. Uneasiness or unhappiness in the home, a feeling of not being wanted, unreasonable fear, and a strong attachment to grandparents or another non-parental member of the household are often signs of an attempted abortion. Fear of the dark is usually but not always a part of the attempted abortion case. The auditor should suspect an abortion attempt in every preclear he audits, at least for this next generation. Whether or not the preclear disbelieves the diagnosis is of no importance to the auditor as the prenatal engrams may very well contain the words, “Can’t believe it.” The parents themselves, as well as society, mislead the individual as to the enormous prevalence of this practice at this time. The attempted abortion preclear may not be discovered to be such until considerable auditing has already been done. Any auditing done on an attempted abortion preclear, unless it is solely addressed to making the case workable, is wasted until the attempted abortions are reached.

The post-birth aberree presents a somewhat different case than the prenatal since his case can be entered at any point and the earliest moments of it can be attained easily. This is not true of the attempted abortion preclear. Attempted abortions may run to any number. Since they are easily the most prevalent dramatization of engrams in the society, they are repeated time and again. The auditor will find it necessary to “unstack” the prenatal period. He will ordinarily reach the latest prenatal injury first. As he finds and examines it, it places itself on the time track. By going to earlier and earlier attempts, more and more of these engrams are revealed until at last the earliest is discovered. The auditor must be prepared to spend many hours of hard work in unstacking injuries. He will many times believe that he has reached the basic of that engram chain only to discover that another type of abortion was attempted prior to that moment. He need not address these engrams for any length of time before he goes on to the earlier one. He should only get some idea of them so that they will be easily locatable on the return. The basic engram on the attempted abortion case may be found shortly after the first missed period of the mother.

Its emotion will be exactly that of the person or persons attempting to perform the abortion. The prenatal human being identifies himself with himself but an adult returned to the prenatal period is reinterpreting the data and will find that he has and is confusing himself with other people associated in the attempts. This engramic data may have slumbered for years before it became violently restimulated and may indeed never have been awakened. It must be removed, however, before a release can be obtained. The auditor should be prepared to unstack fifty or more incidents before birth if necessary.

The mindfulness approach may work better than the dianetic approach in case of pre-natal engrams too.

When he is at last in the vicinity of the basic, even the most skeptical preclear (one who has skepticism as part of the prenatal engram chains) will have no further question as to what is happening to him. The auditor should be prepared to encounter difficulty in the ability of the preclear to hear voices or feel pain, as it is quite common for the engramic content to contain such phrases as “Unconscious” and “Can’t see, can’t feel, can’t hear,” this having been the misconception of the society regarding prenatal life.

The auditor should never be appalled at the damage the prenatal human being has received and so question the validity of his preclear’s data. Unless the umbilical cord is severed or the heart is stopped it is apparently the case that no damage, particularly in the earlier months, is too great for the organism to reconstruct. In that parents performing abortions are usually dramatizing attempted abortions which have been performed on them, rationality of content in the engrams should not be expected. Even the data given for it by the abortionist father, mother or professional is often entirely inaccurate.

The test of an engram is whether or not it will lift and whether or not the somatics which accompanied it disappear and a tone four is obtained. Rearranging data into other sequences will not obtain this. The exact content must be brought out. The attempted abortion human being is often struck unconscious by the earliest part of each attempt since the head is so available to the knitting needles, hat pins, orange-wood sticks, buttonhooks, and so forth which are employed. These periods of unconsciousness must be penetrated and will quite ordinarily release slowly.

The number of prenatal engrams should not particularly appall the auditor for when the basic has been discovered and a tone four achieved, the succeeding experiences will lift with greater and greater ease. The periods of consciousness interspersed between the prenatal engrams, being locks, will vanish.

In the mindfulness approach, the auditor and the auditee let the mind freely associate without much significance given to the nature of data.

Birth is in itself a severe experience and is recorded by the human being from the first moments of pain throughout the entire experience. Everything in a birth is engramic since the human being conceives the ministrations to be more or less antagonistic when they are accompanied by so much pain. A birth must be lifted as a matter of course but not until the presence or absence of prenatals has been established. Even after birth has been lifted, prenatals should be looked for, since prenatals may often be found only after birth has been exhausted. The habits of obstetricians, the presence of sound and speech in the delivery room, the swabbing of an infant’s nostrils, the examination of its mouth, the severe treatment administered to start its breathing and the drops on the eyes may account in themselves for many psychosomatic ills. A cough, however, although it is present in birth and seems to be alleviated by the exhaustion of the birth engram, is quite ordinarily blood running down the throat of the prenatal during an attempted abortion. Any perception during birth, when difficulty is encountered with breathing, may become a restimulator for asthma. Clean fresh air and electric lights may cause allergies and may be the principal restimulators. Everything said during birth, as well as everything said during prenatal experiences, is recorded in the reactive mind and acts as aberrational matter which can and does cause psychological and physiological changes in the individual. Because the parents are not greatly in evidence at birth, this experience may not be restimulated for many years. Prenatals, on the other hand, restimulate more easily.

Birth is a painful experience that may result in an engramic node.

Infant life is very sentient. Delay in learning to talk is delay in learning the complexity of handling vocal muscles rather than an inability to record. Everything in infant life is recorded and the engrams received in it are extremely valid.

The auditor will find himself dealing mainly with prenatal, birth, and infant life. The cases are very rare which have many important basics in childhood or adult life. These last periods contain mainly other engrams which, though they must be addressed to create the release, should not engage much initial attention on the part of the dianeticist. Most of the experiences of mental anguish in childhood and adult life are founded on very early engrams and are locks which are almost self-removing.

Most aberrated nodes come about from the very early part of life.

Moments of unconsciousness which contain physical pain and conceived antagonism lying in childhood and adult life are serious and can produce aberration. Engram chains complete with basic may be found which will, all by themselves, exhaust.



Most aberrated nodes come about from the very early part of life. Birth is a painful experience. It very likely results in an engramic node. But painful experiences during the prenatal period may also cause engramic nodes to be formed even earlier than birth.  

This information is important from the viewpoint of Dianetic procedure, because that procedure always looks for an earlier painful experience on the time track, when it runs into difficulty with auditing. But in mindfulness approach any such data, when it exists, is automatically included in the free association. It is, however, good to know that such data exists and its assimilation is important for case resolution.


Einstein 1938: The Quanta of Light

Reference: Evolution of Physics

This paper presents Chapter IV section 3 from the book THE EVOLUTION OF PHYSICS by A. EINSTEIN and L. INFELD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by Simon and Schuster, New York (1942).

The paragraphs of the original material (in black) are accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.  Feedback on these comments is appreciated.

The heading below is linked to the original materials.


The Quanta of Light

Let us consider a wall built along the seashore. The waves from the sea continually impinge on the wall, wash away some of its surface, and retreat, leaving the way clear for the incoming waves. The mass of the wall decreases and we can ask how much is washed away in, say, one year. But now let us picture a different process. We want to diminish the mass of the wall by the same amount as previously but in a different way. We shoot at the wall and split it at the places where the bullets hit. The mass of the wall will be decreased and we can well imagine that the same reduction in mass is achieved in both cases. But from the appearance of the wall we could easily detect whether the continuous sea wave or the discontinuous shower of bullets has been acting. It will be helpful, in understanding the phenomena which we are about to describe, to bear in mind the difference between sea waves and a shower of bullets.

An impingement can be continuous or discontinuous with the same overall effect.

We said, previously, that a heated wire emits electrons. Here we shall introduce another way of extracting electrons from metal. Homogeneous light, such as violet light, which is, as we know, light of a definite wave-length, is impinging on a metal surface. The light extracts electrons from the metal. The electrons are torn from the metal and a shower of them speeds along with a certain velocity. From the point of view of the energy principle we can say: the energy of light is partially transformed into the kinetic energy of expelled electrons. Modern experimental technique enables us to register these electron-bullets, to determine their velocity and thus their energy. This extraction of electrons by light falling upon metal is called the photoelectric effect.

Light impinges on metal surface to extract electrons. Is that impingement of light continuous or discontinuous?

Our starting-point was the action of a homogeneous light wave, with some definite intensity. As in every experiment, we must now change our arrangements to see whether this will have any influence on the observed effect.

Let us begin by changing the intensity of the homogeneous violet light falling on the metal plate and note to what extent the energy of the emitted electrons depends upon the intensity of the light. Let us try to find the answer by reasoning instead of by experiment. We could argue: in the photoelectric effect a certain definite portion of the energy of radiation is transformed into energy of motion of the electrons. If we again illuminate the metal with light of the same wave-length but from a more powerful source, then the energy of the emitted electrons should be greater, since the radiation is richer in energy. We should, therefore, expect the velocity of the emitted electrons to increase if the intensity of the light increases. But experiment again contradicts our prediction. Once more we see that the laws of nature are not as we should like them to be. We have come upon one of the experiments which, contradicting our predictions, breaks the theory on which they were based. The actual experimental result is, from the point of view of the wave theory, astonishing. The observed electrons all have the same speed, the same energy, which does not change when the intensity of the light is increased.

Increase in the intensity of light increases the number of electrons emitted. It does not increase the velocity of the electrons emitted. If we consider that as an increase in the intensity of the electron beam then that intensity depends on the number of electrons and not on their velocity.

This experimental result could not be predicted by the wave theory. Here again a new theory arises from the conflict between the old theory and experiment.

Here the confusion is between energy and momentum. Total energy may be looked upon as increasing because of increase in the number of particles of same velocity. Or increase in velocity of the same number of particles. Basically we have confusion between inertia and velocity.

Let us be deliberately unjust to the wave theory of light, forgetting its great achievements, its splendid explanation of the bending of light around very small obstacles. With our attention focused on the photoelectric effect, let us demand from the theory an adequate explanation of this effect. Obviously, we cannot deduce from the wave theory the independence of the energy of electrons from the intensity of light by which they have been extracted from the metal plate. We shall, therefore, try another theory. We remember that Newton’s corpuscular theory, explaining many of the observed phenomena of light, failed to account for the bending of light, which we are now deliberately disregarding. In Newton’s time the concept of energy did not exist. Light corpuscles were, according to him, weightless; each colour preserved its own substance character. Later, when the concept of energy was created and it was recognized that light carries energy, no one thought of applying these concepts to the corpuscular theory of light. Newton’s theory was dead and, until our own century, its revival was not taken seriously.

Energy is the capacity to create effect. Substance can create affect through its substantiality (inertia) and its activity (velocity). In both cases the affect is created through impact. Both inertia and velocity contribute to this impact as momentum. A wave is mostly velocity, but it cannot exist without some substantiality.

To keep the principal idea of Newton’s theory, we must assume that homogeneous light is composed of energy-grains and replace the old light corpuscles by light quanta, which we shall call photons, small portions of energy, travelling through empty space with the velocity of light. The revival of Newton’s theory in this new form leads to the quantum theory of light. Not only matter and electric charge, but also energy of radiation has a granular structure, i.e., is built up of light quanta. In addition to quanta of matter and quanta of electricity there are also quanta of energy.

For homogenous light to be composed of energy-grains there must be an absolute definition of energy, which is not the case for energy in material domain. Kinetic energy is defined in terms of velocity, which is conceived in relative terms only. We are then left with the “innate force” concept of inertia. It is possible that light is composed of force-grains, or by “lines of force”. This will make Faraday happy.

The idea of energy quanta was first introduced by Planck at the beginning of this century in order to explain some effects much more complicated than the photoelectric effect. But the photo-effect shows most clearly and simply the necessity for changing our old concepts.

In my opinion, Einstein’s reference to “energy quanta” can be better understood as “force quanta”. I truly respect Faraday’s insight here. And I greatly respect Einstein.

It is at once evident that this quantum theory of light explains the photoelectric effect. A shower of photons is falling on a metal plate. The action between radiation and matter consists here of very many single processes in which a photon impinges on the atom and tears out an electron. These single processes are all alike and the extracted electron will have the same energy in every case. We also understand that increasing the intensity of the light means, in our new language, increasing the number of falling photons. In this case, a different number of electrons would be thrown out of the metal plate, but the energy of any single one would not change. Thus we see that this theory is in perfect agreement with observation.

The frequency of photons remains the same. The kinetic energy of the electrons remains the same. Increase in light intensity results in increased number of extracted electrons. Therefore, increase in light intensity increases the number of impinging photons and not their energy.

What will happen if a beam of homogeneous light of a different colour, say, red instead of violet, falls on the metal surface? Let us leave experiment to answer this question. The energy of the extracted electrons must be measured and compared with the energy of electrons thrown out by violet light. The energy of the electron extracted by red light turns out to be smaller than the energy of the electron extracted by violet light. This means that the energy of the light quanta is different for different colours. The photons belonging to the colour red have half the energy of those belonging to the colour violet. Or, more rigorously: the energy of a light quantum belonging to a homogeneous colour decreases proportionally as the wave-length increases. There is an essential difference between quanta of energy and quanta of electricity. Light quanta differ for every wave-length, whereas quanta of electricity are always the same. If we were to use one of our previous analogies, we should compare light quanta to the smallest monetary quanta, differing in each country.

The photon is absorbed in the process of extracting the electron. The quantum of the photon depends on the color of light. The lesser is the “inertial energy” of the absorbed photon, the lesser is the “kinetic energy” of the extracted electron. Therefore, its “inertial energy” is changing and not the “kinetic energy”. This means that “inertial energy” of photon is converting into the “kinetic energy” of electron. In other words, “mass” is converting into “energy” in the photoelectric process. 

Let us continue to discard the wave theory of light and assume that the structure of light is granular and is formed by light quanta, that is, photons speeding through space with the velocity of light. Thus, in our new picture, light is a shower of photons, and the photon is the elementary quantum of light energy. If, however, the wave theory is discarded, the concept of a wave-length disappears. What new concept takes its place? The energy of the light quanta! Statements expressed in the terminology of the wave theory can be translated into statements of the quantum theory of radiation. For example:

The state of affairs can be summarized in the following way: there are phenomena which can be explained by the quantum theory but not by the wave theory. Photo-effect furnishes an example, though other phenomena of this kind are known. There are phenomena which can be explained by the wave theory but not by the quantum theory. The bending of light around obstacles is a typical example. Finally, there are phenomena, such as the rectilinear propagation of light, which can be equally well explained by the quantum and the wave theory of light.

The wave theory and the quantum theory can both exist together if the light quantum is a “line of force” and not a ball like particle. A line of force can have wavelength as postulated by Faraday. A line of force can also be a discrete quantum as postulated by Einstein.

But what is light really? Is it a wave or a shower of photons? Once before we put a similar question when we asked: is light a wave or a shower of light corpuscles? At that time there was every reason for discarding the corpuscular theory of light and accepting the wave theory, which covered all phenomena. Now, however, the problem is much more complicated. There seems no likelihood of forming a consistent description of the phenomena of light by a choice of only one of the two possible languages. It seems as though we must use sometimes the one theory and sometimes the other, while at times we may use either. We are faced with a new kind of difficulty. We have two contradictory pictures of reality; separately neither of them fully explains the phenomena of light, but together they do!

How is it possible to combine these two pictures? How can we understand these two utterly different aspects of light? It is not easy to account for this new difficulty. Again we are faced with a fundamental problem.

This fundamental problem of wave-particle arises from the assumption that a light quantum is ball-like and it can have no wavelength. But a light quantum can be string-like and it can have wavelength. The contradiction is only because of a wrong assumption.

For the moment let us accept the photon theory of light and try, by its help, to understand the facts so far explained by the wave theory. In this way we shall stress the difficulties which make the two theories appear, at first sight, irreconcilable.

We remember: a beam of homogeneous light passing through a pinhole gives light and dark rings (p. 118). How is it possible to understand this phenomenon by the help of the quantum theory of light, disregarding the wave theory? A photon passes through the hole. We could expect the screen to appear light if the photon passes through and dark if it does not. Instead, we find light and dark rings. We could try to account for it as follows: perhaps there is some interaction between the rim of the hole and the photon which is responsible for the appearance of the diffraction rings. This sentence can, of course, hardly be regarded as an explanation. At best, it outlines a programme for an explanation holding out at least some hope of a future understanding of diffraction by interaction between matter and photons.

The diffraction rings are explained when we consider the light quantum to be a string-like line of force. It is continuous in one dimension and discrete in another.

But even this feeble hope is dashed by our previous discussion of another experimental arrangement. Let us take two pinholes. Homogeneous light passing through the two holes gives light and dark stripes on the screen. How is this effect to be understood from the point of view of the quantum theory of light? We could argue: a photon passes through either one of the two pinholes. If a photon of homogeneous light represents an elementary light particle, we can hardly imagine its division and its passage through the two holes. But then the effect should be exactly as in the first case, light and dark rings and not light and dark stripes. How is it possible then that the presence of another pinhole completely changes the effect? Apparently the hole through which the photon does not pass, even though it may be at a fair distance, changes the rings into stripes! If the photon behaves like a corpuscle in classical physics, it must pass through one of the two holes. But in this case, the phenomena of diffraction seem quite incomprehensible.

A photon is a wavy string-like particle that can cause diffraction.

Science forces us to create new ideas, new theories. Their aim is to break down the wall of contradictions which frequently blocks the way of scientific progress. All the essential ideas in science were born in a dramatic conflict between reality and our attempts at understanding. Here again is a problem for the solution of which new principles are needed. Before we try to account for the attempts of modern physics to explain the contradiction between the quantum and the wave aspects of light, we shall show that exactly the same difficulty appears when dealing with quanta of matter instead of quanta of light.



In the photoelectric effect, an increase in the intensity of light only increased the number of electrons emitted and not their energy (velocity). This implies an increase in the same type of interactions between light and electrons. Hence, light must also be composed of particles like electrons.

When the wavelength of light was increased, it lowered the energy of the electrons emitted, and not their number. This implies that the energy was supplied by the composition of light particles and not by their kinetic energy. In other words, the inertia (innate force) of light particles converted into the velocity of the electrons. It is like a conversion from “mass” into “energy”.

A constant velocity is an outcome of balanced forces. Inertia is the innate force of the substance It balances the acceleration of the quantum particle. As this balance shifts, so does the velocity. Thus, underlying the exchange of energy there is a balance of forces in terms of momentum.

Einstein refers to these light and electricity particles as “energy quanta”, but, much earlier, Faraday referred to them as lines of force. These lines of force may be viewed as string-like “force quanta”. This view explains the wave properties of light and generates no conflict with its quantum properties.  


OT 1948: Engram Chains

Reference: DIANETICS: The Original Thesis

This paper presents Chapter 14 from the book DIANETICS: THE ORIGINAL THESIS by L. RON HUBBARD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by The Hubbard Dianetic Foundation, Inc. (1948).

The paragraphs of the original material (in black) are accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.  Feedback on these comments is appreciated.

The heading below is linked to the original materials.


Engram Chains

More than one engramic chain will be found in every aberree. When this person becomes a preclear the dianeticist does well to discover the earliest chain. It is not always possible to do this with accuracy since a preclear is sometimes in such a nervous condition that he cannot be worked on his basic chain but must be alleviated in a greater or lesser degree by the exhaustion of a later and more available chain. This last, however, is not the usual case.

The model of many aberrated nodes in a mental matrix of data elements works much better.

The dianeticist should clearly understand certain working principles and definitions. By an engram is meant a moment of unconsciousness accompanied by physical pain and conceived  antagonism. The basic engram is the earliest engram on an engram chain. Also there may be engrams of the same character and kind on the same driveline as the basic engram of the chain. An engram chain is composed of a basic engram and a series of similar incidents. Engram chains also contain locks which are instances of mental anguish more or less known to the analytical mind. These are often mistaken by the preclear for the cause of his conduct. A true engram is unknown to the conscious computer of the preclear but underlies it as a false datum on which are erected almost equally unknown similar incidents and an enormous number of locks.

From the perspective of the auditee an engram is a physically painful experience that is not assimilated in the mental matrix. It forms an engramic node that corrupts other nodes of the matrix it is linked to.

In order to release an engram chain it is vital and absolutely necessary to discover the basic of that chain. An individual will have more than one engram chain but he has a basic chain. This must be released as soon as possible after auditing is begun on the preclear.

The dianetic theory aims for the “basic of the chain”, which violates the principle of gradient. The mindfulness approach lets the mind unwind without interference at the proper gradient.

When an engram is discovered by the dianeticist, he must examine the aspect of it to determine whether or not it is the basic. Discovering it is not, he must immediately determine an earlier basic, and so forth until he is obviously on the scene of the basic engram.

The mind can do this automatically better than the dianeticist.

There are certain tests which he can apply. A basic engram will rise to laughter, “sag” slightly, and then rise to tone four and vanish. Successive engrams will then erase from that chain with very little work. Almost any engram on an engram chain can be exhausted, but if it is not a basic engram it will recede and vanish at times but will rise in part again when the basic engram has been reached and the preclear is brought forward into its area.

The mind will unwind in the order necessary. No order should be imposed from the outside.

An engram not basic is subject to “sag.” Which is to say that it may be brought to the two point zero (2.0) tone, but after a certain length of time has elapsed— from one to two days—it will be found to have “sagged” and to be, for instance, in a one point one (1.1) tone. It can be successively lifted until it is apparently in a three point zero (3.0) tone, at which point much of its content will disappear. This is reduction.

Any engram chain can be reduced to some degree without reaching the basic but when it has been reached the basic itself and subsequent engrams can be brought rapidly to tone four providing no engrams are skipped on the return up the time track.

When an engram chain has been brought to tone four, it can be considered to have vanished. The preclear can no longer find it on the time track (he may even be unable to recall some of its most painful and disheartening aspects). The mind apparently has been proofed against the data it has contained. A search for an engram chain after it has been exhausted and a tone four has been achieved should, for purposes of auditing, be entirely fruitless.

Engramic node vanishes when its contents are merged with rest of the mental matrix.

Once the basic has been discovered and the engram chain has been brought to tone four the locks will vanish of their own accord. If this does not occur then there is something remaining or the auditor has been too optimistic about the selection of his basic engram for the chain and has not, in reality, discovered it.

All engram chains should be exhausted from a preclear. These may be discovered to lie along the various dynamics but any chain may influence more than one dynamic.

Another type of engram is the cross engram. This is usually a childhood or adult engram which embraces more than one engram chain. The receipt of the cross engram, containing as it does the convergence of two or more engram chains, is often accompanied by a “nervous breakdown” or the sudden insanity of an individual. A cross engram may occur in a severe accident, in prolonged or severe illness under antagonistic circumstances, or a nitrous oxide operation. Cross engrams are very easy to locate but should not be addressed by the dianeticist as such since an enormous amount of work upon them will not exhaust them until the basic and the chains on which the cross engram depends have been brought to tone four.

Post-battle neurasthenia is almost always traceable to the receipt of a cross engram. This must be, of course, an engram in its own right on more than one chain. It is conceivable that it may be so severe that it “breaks” the individual even if it lies on only one chain.

No complications come about when the mind is allowed to freely associate without interference.

There are certain rules the dianeticist may employ to establish the basic engram of a chain. In first entering a case these rules apply as well to the first goal which is the location of the basic engram of the basic chain.

Number one: No engram will lift if the basic of that chain has not been lifted.

Number two: The basic engram will not lift until the basic instant of the basic engram has been reached, which is to say, the first moment of the engram. Ordinarily this is the most obscure.

Number three: If after two or three test recountings of an engram it does not seem to be improving, the auditor should attempt to discover an earlier engram.

Number four: No engram is valid unless accompanied by somatic pain. This may be mild. Incidents which do not contain somatics are either not basic (the chain having been suspended by some such command as “can’t feel” in the basic) or else it may not even be an engram.

The goal is to assimilate all data into the mental matrix. One knows when this goal is being accomplished.

Cases should be entered as near as possible to the basic engram. Then they should be returned to earlier incidents until the basic is discovered.

The running of locks themselves may accomplish some alleviation of a case.

The case is entered with the awareness of the difficulty.



The Dianetic theory believes that engrams exist in chains and that the whole chain can be removed rapidly by finding the basic of the chain and removing it. It, therefore, aims at finding the basic of the chain. This gets the dianetic procedure into a lot of difficulties. These difficulties come about because this dianetic procedure violates the principle of gradient.

The Mindfulness model looks at engram as a node that could not be assimilated in the mental matrix. Whenever this engramic node is used as part of any circuit of the mental matrix, it leads to aberration. This generates aberrated nodes around the engramic node. Thus, engramic and other aberrated nodes are networked together, and they do not exist in simple linear chains.

The auditee first decides the difficulty he wants to handle. He then enters his case fully aware of his difficulty. He concentrates on the difficulty while letting the mind freely associate all related data.  No complications arise when the mind is allowed to freely associate without interference. This allows the mind to follow its natural gradient in assimilating the aberrated circuits.

The goal is to assimilate all data into the mental matrix. Aberrated and engramic nodes vanish when their contents are assimilated into rest of the mental matrix. One is fully aware of the progress.


Einstein 1938: Elementary Quanta of Matter and Electricity

Reference: Evolution of Physics

This paper presents Chapter IV section 2 from the book THE EVOLUTION OF PHYSICS by A. EINSTEIN and L. INFELD. The contents are from the original publication of this book by Simon and Schuster, New York (1942).

The paragraphs of the original material (in black) are accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.  Feedback on these comments is appreciated.

The heading below is linked to the original materials.


Elementary Quanta of Matter and Electricity

In the picture of matter drawn by the kinetic theory, all elements are built of molecules. Take the simplest case of the lightest element, that is hydrogen. On p. 66 we saw how the study of Brownian motions led to the determination of the mass of one hydrogen molecule. Its value is:

0.000 000 000 000 000 000 000 0033 gram.

This means that mass is discontinuous. The mass of a portion of hydrogen can change only by a whole number of small steps each corresponding to the mass of one hydrogen molecule. But chemical processes show that the hydrogen molecule can be broken up into two parts, or, in other words, that the hydrogen molecule is composed of two atoms. In chemical processes it is the atom and not the molecule which plays the role of an elementary quantum. Dividing the above number by two, we find the mass of a hydrogen atom. This is about

0.000 000 000 000 000 000 000 0017 gram.

Mass is a discontinuous quantity. But, of course, we need not bother about this when determining weight. Even the most sensitive scales are far from attaining the degree of precision by which the discontinuity in mass variation could be detected.

The elementary quanta of the mass of an element are called atoms.

Let us return to a well-known fact. A wire is connected with the source of a current. The current is flowing through the wire from higher to lower potential. We remember that many experimental facts were explained by the simple theory of electric fluids flowing through the wire. We also remember (p. 82) that the decision as to whether the positive fluid flows from higher to lower potential, or the negative fluid flows from lower to higher potential, was merely a matter of convention. For the moment we disregard all the further progress resulting from the field concepts. Even when thinking in the simple terms of electric fluids, there still remain some questions to be settled. As the name “fluid” suggests, electricity was regarded, in the early days, as a continuous quantity. The amount of charge could be changed, according to these old views, by arbitrarily small steps. There was no need to assume elementary electric quanta. The achievements of the kinetic theory of matter prepared us for a new question: do elementary quanta of electric fluids exist? The other question to be settled is: does the current consist of a flow of positive, negative or perhaps of both fluids?

The idea of all the experiments answering these questions is to tear the electric fluid from the wire, to let it travel through empty space, to deprive it of any association with matter and then to investigate its properties, which must appear most clearly under these conditions. Many experiments of this kind were performed in the late nineteenth century. Before explaining the idea of these experimental arrangements, at least in one case, we shall quote the results. The electric fluid flowing through the wire is a negative one, directed, therefore, from lower to higher potential. Had we known this from the start, when the theory of electric fluids was first formed, we should certainly have interchanged the words, and called the electricity of the rubber rod positive, that of the glass rod negative. It would then have been more convenient to regard the flowing fluid as the positive one. Since our first guess was wrong, we now have to put up with the inconvenience. The next important question is whether the structure of this negative fluid is “granular”, whether or not it is composed of electric quanta. Again a number of independent experiments show that there is no doubt as to the existence of an elementary quantum of this negative electricity. The negative electric fluid is constructed of grains, just as the beach is composed of grains of sand, or a house built of bricks. This result was formulated most clearly by J. J. Thomson, about forty years ago. The elementary quanta of negative electricity are called electrons. Thus every negative electric charge is composed of a multitude of elementary charges represented by electrons. The negative charge can, like mass, vary only discontinuously. The elementary electric charge is, however, so small that in many investigations it is equally possible and sometimes even more convenient to regard it as a continuous quantity. Thus the atomic and electron theories introduce into science discontinuous physical quantities which can vary only by jumps.

The elementary quanta of negative electricity are called electrons.

Imagine two parallel metal plates in some place from which all air has been extracted. One of the plates has a positive, the other a negative charge. A positive test charge brought between the two plates will be repelled by the positively charged and attracted by the negatively charged plate. Thus the lines of force of the electric field will be directed from the positively to the negatively charged plate. A force acting on a negatively charged test body would have the opposite direction. If the plates are sufficiently large, the lines of force between them will be equally dense everywhere; it is immaterial where the test body is placed, the force and, therefore, the density of the lines of force will be the same. Electrons brought somewhere between the plates would behave like raindrops in the gravitational field of the earth, moving parallel to each other from the negatively to the positively charged plate. There are many known experimental arrangements for bringing a shower of electrons into such a field which directs them all in the same way. One of the simplest is to bring a heated wire between the charged plates. Such a heated wire emits electrons which are afterwards directed by the lines of force of the external field. For instance, radio tubes, familiar to everyone, are based on this principle.

Many very ingenious experiments have been performed on a beam of electrons. The changes of their path in different electric and magnetic external fields have been investigated. It has even been possible to isolate a single electron and to determine its elementary charge and its mass, that is, its inertial resistance to the action of an external force. Here we shall only quote the value of the mass of an electron. It turned out to be about two thousand times smaller than the mass of a hydrogen atom. Thus the mass of a hydrogen atom, small as it is, appears great in comparison with the mass of an electron. From the point of view of a consistent field theory, the whole mass, that is, the whole energy, of an electron is the energy of its field; the bulk of its strength is within a very small sphere, and away from the “centre” of the electron it is weak.

The energy of the electron is its “mass” as determined from its inertial resistance. This “mass” is spread out from a center and becomes weak rapidly.

We said before that the atom of any element is its smallest elementary quantum. This statement was believed for a very long time. Now, however, it is no longer believed! Science has formed a new view showing the limitations of the old one. There is scarcely any statement in physics more firmly founded on facts than the one about the complex structure of the atom. First came the realization that the electron, the elementary quantum of the negative electric fluid, is also one of the components of the atom, one of the elementary bricks from which all matter is built. The previously quoted example of a heated wire emitting electrons is only one of the numerous instances of the extraction of these particles from matter. This result closely connecting the problem of the structure of matter with that of electricity, follows, beyond any doubt, from very many independent experimental facts.

It is comparatively easy to extract from an atom some of the electrons from which it is composed. This can be done by heat, as in our example of a heated wire, or in a different way, such as by bombarding atoms with other electrons.

Suppose a thin, red-hot, metal wire is inserted into rarefied hydrogen. The wire will emit electrons in all directions. Under the action of a foreign electric field a given velocity will be imparted to them. An electron increases its velocity just like a stone falling in the gravitational field. By this method we can obtain a beam of electrons rushing along with a definite speed in a definite direction. Nowadays, we can reach velocities comparable to that of light by submitting electrons to the action of very strong fields. What happens, then, when a beam of electrons of a definite velocity impinges on the molecules of rarefied hydrogen? The impact of a sufficiently speedy electron will not only disrupt the hydrogen molecule into its two atoms but will also extract an electron from one of the atoms.

Let us accept the fact that electrons are constituents of matter. Then, an atom from which an electron has been torn out cannot be electrically neutral. If it was previously neutral, then it cannot be so now, since it is poorer by one elementary charge. That which remains must have a positive charge. Furthermore, since the mass of an electron is so much smaller than that of the lightest atom, we can safely conclude that by far the greater part of the mass of the atom is not represented by electrons but by the remainder of the elementary particles which are much heavier than the electrons. We call this heavy part of the atom its nucleus.

In a hydrogen atom the electron is smeared around its nucleus.

Modern experimental physics has developed methods of breaking up the nucleus of the atom, of changing atoms of one element into those of another, and of extracting from the nucleus the heavy elementary particles of which it is built. This chapter of physics, known as “nuclear physics”, to which Rutherford contributed so much, is, from the experimental point of view, the most interesting. But a theory, simple in its fundamental ideas and connecting the rich variety of facts in the domain of nuclear physics, is still lacking. Since, in these pages, we are interested only in general physical ideas, we shall omit this chapter in spite of its great importance in modern physics.



The elementary quantum of hydrogen is an atom. This atom may be stripped off an electron, which is the elementary quantum of electricity. This leaves a positively charged nucleus behind. The electron has hardly any mass compared to the nucleus.

The electron, therefore, appears to be a surface phenomenon of outward radiating mass. When it is removed, it seems to leave an inward radiating groove on the surface of the nucleus.

This outward radiating mass seems to form the negative charge. The inward radiating groove seems to form the positive charge for the lack of better explanation. They have a tendency to join back together.