# Hegelian Approach to Physics

 Portrait of Hegel from the public domain.
As you know, Hegel's dialectric approach goes like this. We start with "thesis." Then there is "anti-thesis." We can then synthesize these two to create a new idea.

Later, Karl Marx and others attemped to use the dialectric approach to formulate the theory of society. I am not able to make any comments on this aspect of Hegelianism.

When Hegel formulated his philosophy, he did not know physics. Since Hegel's time, physics made some progress. Let us see how Hegelianism works in physics. We cab use the numbers 1, 2, and 3 for thesis, and anti-thesis, and synthesis.

• Isaac Newton produced his physics according to

1. Closed orbits for planents.
2. Open oribits for comets.
3. Second-order differential equation.

 Maxwell's statue in Edinburgh. I was there (June 2013).

• James Clerk Maxwell combined all laws of electricity and magnetism into a quartet of equations.

1. Electricity.
2. Magnetism.
3. Electomagnetic radiation for this wireless world.

• Max Planck established the harmony in low and high frequency limits of black-body radiation. In so doing he came up with the concept of quantum.

1. Radiation law for low frequencies.
2. Radiation law for high frequencies.
3. Plack's constant.

 This photo is in the public domain. It was produced in 1947 by Orren Jack Turner, who produced this photo of myself in 1961.

• Albert Einstein noted that Newton's mechanics is covariant in the Galilean system while Maxwell's electromagnetism is Lorentz-covariant.

1. Galilean transformations for Newtonian mechanics.
2. Lorentz transformations for Maxwell's equations.
3. Lorentz-covariant mechanics.

Einstein also observed that Newtonian particles and massless particles have different energy-momentum relations.

1. Energy-momentum relation for slow particles.
2. The same relation for massless particles.
3. E = mc 2.

• Heisenberg observed that matter can be regarded as particles and can also be regarded as waves.

1. Particles.
2. Waves.
3. Uncertainty Principle.

 Weinberg with Sam Treiman from the "Prince" (Princeton University newspaper 1985). Treiman was Weinberg's thesis advisor. I like this photo because I also have a photo with Treiman taken in 1987. Click here if you are interested.

• Glashow, Salam and Weinberg observed that electromagnetic and weak interactions can be combined. This combined theory is known as the standard model. This theory predicts the existence of the Higgs boson.

1. Electromagnetic interaction.
2. Weak interaction.
3. Higgs boson.

• Richard Feynman said the adventure of our science of physics is a perpetual attempt to recognize that the different aspects of nature are really different aspects of the same thing.

In saying this Feynman extends Hegelianism from dialectic to tria-alectic or multi-alectic approach to physics. Synthesis does not have to be composed of two. It can come from more than two. Click here for a synthesis of three papers by Feynman.

As for the traditional dialetic approach, Feynman made the following contribution. Relativity and quantum mechanics are two greatest physical theories formulated in the 20th Century. Can they be synthesized?

1. Special relativity.
2. Quantum Mechanics.
3. Feynman diagrams .

• However, Feynman diagram can handle only scattering problems, like open orbits before Newton. How about bound state problems? I worked on the question of whether the harmonic oscillator can be consistent with special relativity.

1. Special relativity.
2. Harmonic oscillators for bound states.
3. Lorentz-covariant oscillators, which can explain, among others, why the quark model and the parton model are two different manifestations of the same covariant entity. On this oscillator formalism, I worked mostly with Marilyn Noz since 1971. Click here for the latest review article on this subject.

Then we are led to the question of whether Feynman diagrams and covariant oscillators can be combined into one theory while they take different mathematical forms.

1. Feynman diagrams.
2. Covariant oscillators.
3. Both share the same set of physical principles. Click here for details.

4. There are many books on Hegel's philosophy. I attempted to read some of them, but I coud not understand what Hegel really wanted to say. Only after writing physics papers for more than 50 years, and only after contructing this webpage, I am beginning to understand Hegel.

In mathematics, there is an abstract theory called "group theory." Presumably some people can do group theory without writing down matrices, but I cannot. Without matrices, particularly two-by-two matrices, I cannot do group theory.

Likewise, we need history of physics to understant Hegelianism. I am not able to see how one can do it otherwise. It is said that Karl Marx formulated his idealogy based on Hegel, but I do not understand Marxism because Marx in his book does not give physical examples. Here is my Marx file.

## Hegelhaus in Stuttgart

• Did you know Hegel was born in Stuttgart?

Y. S. Kim (May 1012)

copyright@2012 by Y. S. Kim, unless otherwise specified.