The World Explored, the World Suffered Education Issue Nr. 32 July 2020 - Page 32

Einstein, as we know refused to believe in the universality of objects traveling in straight lines in a virtually propertyless empty space and insisted, contrary to Newton's theory, that space in the vicinity of massive objects has at least one property, namely that it is curved. This cast a shadow over Euclidean geometry but not over mathematics in general. The question to ask here then is: is a straight line something metaphysical in a negative sense, needing to be neutralized as a concept by the transcendental proposition that everything must have a cause: even in the case of space which has been caused to be curved. One assumes that in this context the metaphysical element of Einstein's theory would be best characterized in terms of non-Euclidean geometry. If this is the case then we can confirm that at the very least, Einstein's science is more Kantian than it is empirical, more defined in terms of its theory then the so-called scientific method. As we may recall Einstein did not conduct any experiments to arrive at his theory or to confirm his theory. He formed his theory first and then left it to others to confirm via experimentation. Kantian science is in fact merely a refinement of Aristotelian science and the question that is being raised in this discussion is whether this is what Brett means by science when he accuses the Arabs of possessing a weak conception of natural science. The evidence, however, is to the contrary, Brett embraces a more modern empirical view of science that at best only explains its technological achievements and not the thought of Newton or Einstein. Alhazen, Ibn al-Haytham(965AD-1039AD) was certainly interested in science having written over a hundred treatises on mathematics and the physical sciences. His most famous work was entitled "Perspectiva" or "Optica" and dealt with problems arising from the works of Ptolemy and Damianus. Alhazen thought of the eye as a physico-psychological system and embraced the Aristotelian theory of the intromission of light(light transmits sensible forms from the external world to the eye). Alhazen disagreed with Aristotle, however, over the mechanics of this transmission claiming that from every physical point on the object rays of light are sent to every point on the surface of the eye. Alhazen conducted experiments to prove that light traveled in straight lines and also argued against the use of observation in astronomical investigations. Einstein's theory, as we know, argued that light would only travel in straight lines if no other cause such as the gravity of massive objects did not cause it to bend toward the source of the gravitational power. According to Mathias Schramm, Alhazen in his experiments: