Supporting Evidence of M-Theory on the Nature of the Multiverse in Lovecraft’s “The Statement of Randolph Carter

warren_meets_his_doom_by_pickmans_model                     Warren meets his Doom by Frohickey (www.deviantart.com)

When Harley Warren entered the under-ground crypt in that forgot graveyard in the Big Cypress Swamp, he discovered something that cost him his life.  He had an idea something aberrant was lurking in that tomb, which is why he would not let his friend Randolph Carter go down with him. However, what Warren thought was down there and what was revealed to be there were probably two very different things. To analyze exactly what was down in that under-ground tomb, I want to discuss H.P. Lovecraft’s “The Statement of Randolph Carter” from both a macro-scale and a micro-scale.

From a macro-scale perspective, Warren may have stumbled into a portal in that tomb that connects our Space-Time to another Universe. There are a unique sub-group of Lovecraft’s tales that hint at the possibility that our Universe is some connected or super-positioned onto another one. Stories such as “The White Ship,” “Pickman’s Model,” “The Nameless City,” “The Festival,” and “Celephais” all provide evidence for the existence of another Universe and the possibility for entities from one Universe visiting the other. The portal or bridge between the two Universe could be a specific location in our Space-Time, the use of some type of alien technology or methodology, or simply dreams. The under-ground tomb in that Floridian swamp may have been one of these portals and Warren may have found this out through the book he was carrying, written in alien characters. It has been questioned whether or not this book is perhaps at least a partial translation of the Necronomicon (Joshi, 1999; Klinger, 2014).  Similar to Walter Gilman in “Dreams in the Witch-House,” Warren may have found a formula or methodology that could be used to access higher dimensions to open a portal to another Universe.  If indeed Warren opened a portal and peered into it, it would help explain some of this statements to Carter such as “God! If you could seed what I am seeing!”, “Carter, it’s terrible – monstrous – unbelievable!”, and “It’s too utterly beyond thought – I dare not tell you – no man could know it and live – Great God! I never dreamed of this.” Are these statements Warrens attempt to understand what he was seeing – a portal that opened up from one Universe (or brane) to another and what was on the other side?

warren 1_SaraBardi_www.dreamquestofunknownkadath.com                                                                                                    Harley Warren by Sara Bardi (www.dreamquestofunknownkadath.com)

Modern cosmology is not considered the pseudoscience it was in the past and current hypotheses on the nature of reality may help to explain what Warren experienced.  Super String theory (also known as String theory) is an attempt to describe a unified field theory (a theory for everything) that would unite all four forces of nature (gravity, electromagnetism, strong nuclear force and weak nuclear force), based on tiny, micro-atomic strings vibrating in 10 or 11-dimensional Space-Time. A strong point of String theory is that it integrates gravity, where other theories cannot. A weak point of String theory is that it cannot provide solutions for every aspect of its model. Thus, a number of solutions are being investigated for M-Theory (essentially an extension of String theory) that include super-symmetry as well as the possibility of adding another dimension into the calculations (www.mkaku.org). For the sake of this discussion, Warren may have opened a portal from our Space-Time brane to another brane (potentially the Dreamlands). Additionally, our brane and the Dreamlands brane may be a series of branes that are single parts of a complex Multiverse that extends into our Space-Time as well as into higher dimensions.

040400sci-universal-theory_A_SteveDuenes_NewYorkTimes Proposed ideas of M-theory and the Multiverse (illustration by Steve Duenes of the New York Times)

From a micro-scale perspective, we have very little information on what the “things” or entities were that Warren encounters in the under-ground tomb. Two hypotheses are proposed.  First, they may be the individuals that were somehow brought back to life through some unknown mechanisms but possibly similar to Dr. Herbert West’s serum in “Herbert West – Reanimator.” Possibly the unique environmental conditions under-ground and/or being adjacent to the portable to the Dreamlands brane, reanimates the dead. This would explain the statement “…why certain corpses never decay, but rest firm and fat in their tombs for a thousand years.” Of course a recently dead individual would probably understand how to use a telephone and speak English so the chilling response Carter gets at the end of the tale would be understandable.

the_statement_of_randolph_carter_by_cheesecake_weasel-d6lmu64 The Statement of Randolph Carter by Cheesecake Weasel (www.deviantart.com)

An alternative hypothesis is the entities are not reanimated dead but instead ghouls, creatures that may be an extreme variation of human genetic / evolution and/or the result of some type of genetic disease (possibly triggered by a virus or prion). Under a certain set of circumstances humans can visit the Dreamlands brane but ghouls seem to accomplish this with a higher degree of ease and frequency relative to humans. Indeed, ghouls may take advantage of this ability as a means of traveling largely unseen from graveyard to graveyard. Whether this ability is largely based on an intrinsic, genetic ability of the ghouls or of knowledge / technology on how to utilize dreams and access portals to move between the branes is largely unknown.

ghoulsgraveyard1_MarkFoster_hplovecraftart.blogspot.com Ghoul’s Graveyard by Mark Foster (www.hplovecraftart.blogspot.com)

If the ghoul hypothesis is correct, the idea of certain corpses that never decay and appear to be firm and fat may be ghouls posing as the dead to avoid being discovered. If this is the case, then Harley Warren did more just examine dead bodies in the tomb. Maybe Warren knew this under-ground tomb in Florida was one of the points where our Space-Time’s brane connected to another (the Dreamlands brane?) and he somehow accessed or opened this connection. This would have easily upset the ghouls, either posing as the dead or possibly coming from the other brane entering ours to find Warren. To keep their existence, as well as the ability to travel to other universes a secret, it is not surprising that the ghouls would kill Warren and tell Carter that “…Warren is Dead!” Using superstition to keep knowledge on the nature and structure of Space-Time, reality and the Multiverse a secret is a re-occurring theme in many of Lovecraft’s writings.

tle_081_www.littleempire.blogspot.com

The climatic scene from Lovecraft’s “The Statement of Randolph Carter” as shown in Lego format (www.littleempire.blogspot.com)

Next time more evidence of the M-theory in Lovecraft’s writings will be presented in a discussion of his tale “The White Ship.” Thank you – Fred.

Early 20th Century Technology in “The Statement of Randolph Carter”

SoRC_Andrew_Brosnatch                               The Statement of Randolph Carter by Andrew Bronsnatch

In H.P. Lovecraft’s “The Statement of Randolph Carter,” written in 1919 (The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stores by S.T. Joshi, 1999), several relatively new forms of early 20th century technology were utilized. First is the electric lantern. As Harley Warren and Randolph Carter travel through the Big Cypress Swamp in the dark they use electric lanterns to find their way. The first commercially successful, portable electric lantern used a dry cell battery and was available for purchase before the end of 1896 (www.candlepowerforums.com). The Acme Electric Lamp Company held the patent for the electric lantern. Unfortunately for Acme the electric lantern was short-lived as its popularity declined with the increased availability of the tubular flashlight, which was invented in 1898 (www.candlepowerforums.com). Ironically, while potable electric lighting was a relatively new technology, by the time electric flashlight was readily available, the electric lantern was rendered obsolete. Thus, even by 1919 the use of an electric lantern would have been thought of by at least some as antiquated.

vintage-antique-1920-s-1930-s-electric-flashlight-lantern_www.tearpeak.com                                                                                              A vintage electric lantern (www.terapeak.com)

antique-flashlight-lot-early-electric-flashlights-French-Rayolite-Winchester-Laurel-Leaf-Farm-item-no-nt718153-3           Antique electric flashlights

In contrast to the electric lantern, very little information is readily available on the portable telephone outfit, used by Henry Warren to communicate with Randolph Carter above-ground.  As Leslie S. Klinger has noted in The Annotated H.P. Lovecraft (2014) on “The Statement of Randolph Carter,” information on a phone system as described by Lovecraft – where two telephones are directly connected to each other by wire – is not widely available.  Apparently, Frederick F. Strong filed a patent application in 1905 for a portable telephone unit where two phones were connected with wire (Klinger, 2014).  However, in Lovecraft’s day, technological advances in the telephone technology was occurring at an accelerated pace, similar to the advances in the home computer through the 1980’s or current advances in hand held electronic devices.

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1912dub1_www.earlyradiohistory.us

Indeed, in the early 20th century as the quality and range of telephone technology increased, there were discussions of having “a wireless telephone outfit in a suit-case–or in any other convenient carrying receptacle–complete, and requiring only connection at any ordinary electric-light socket to make it capable of operating over a distance of fifty miles…” (from Technical World Magazine, 1912).  Additionally, the first coast to coast long-distance telephone call was in 1915 between Alexander Graham Bell in New York City and his formal assistant Thomas Augustus Watson in San Francisco.  By 1904 more than three million phones in the United States were connected to manual switchboard exchanges. Given the quick-based, technological evolution of the telephone, it was not surprising that Warren and Carter had a portable telephone outfit. However, what is surprising is the “thing” deep within the Earth knew how to operate the device. The next article will be a discussion of the creatures Harley Warren encountered underground. Thank you – Fred.

the_fate_of_harley_warren_by_frohickey The Fate of Harley Warren by Frohickey (www.deviantart.com)

The Hounds of Tindalos, Part 5: Final Thoughts on the Hounds

HofT_JbLee The Hounds of Tindalos by Jb Lee

Unlike H.P. Lovecraft’s “From Beyond” where a device is constructed that generates a particularity unique electromagnetic field that directly stimulates a part of our brain called the pineal gland, in Frank Belknap Long’s “The House of Tindalos” Halpin Chalmers consumes a drug that alters his brain chemistry and allows his consciousness to temporarily travel outside of the Space-Time of our Universe. In these travels Chalmers encounters beings that “have no bodies, and they move slowly through outrageous angles.” These are the Hounds of Tindalos.

Even in the absence of drugs or mental illness, the mind is constantly generating hallucinations and the anterior cingulate cortex is the key part of the brain that allows us to distinguish between external stimuli and those that are internally generated our mind (The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind by Michio Kaku, 2014). Unfortunately, in many forms of mental illness, including schizophrenia, the system that allows us to separate real (external) and imagined (internal) stimuli is damaged or is not correctly operating. Additionally, consciousness (at least for humans) can be defined as “the process of creating a model of our world in space and time (especially the future) by evaluating many feedback loops in various parameters” (Kaku, 2014). Thus, one of the outcomes of this is that mental illness is largely a disruption of the checks and balances between competing feedback loops (Kaku, 2014). This means that since we evolved in a Universe / reality of Space-Time – that is, three spatial dimensions and one of time – are minds and associated consciousness recognize linear time and uses this to make predictions for future actions. Mental illness and drugs can alter, modify or damage this perception.

The_Future_of_the_Mind_bookcover

The Liao drug ingested by Chalmers in “The Hounds of Tindalos” may have altered his perception of reality, particularly in reference to time, giving his mind “access” to components of our reality not normally perceived by us (as the Resonator does in “From Beyond”).  Specifically, in the case of “The Hounds of Tindalos” Chalmers’s mind was provided access to outside of our Space-Time.  This access beyond our or any other Space-Time may be similar to the circumstances that occurred in Clark Ashton Smith’s “Ubbo-Sathla.”

Stepping out of our (or any) Space-Time is very different than using a wormhole to enter another part of our Universe or using extra-dimensional travel to enter another Universe.  To be completely out of Space-Time would be an unnerving condition for the human mind and this certainly seems to be the case for Chalmers.  While in the beginning of the tale Chalmers appears to be a little eccentric and perhaps even bipolar (which may have actually made him more susceptible to the Liao drug), after he has taken the drug and is outside of Space-Time he appears to suffer from a mental breakdown. His mind, attempting to perceive the absence of time, or perhaps even meta-time, attempts to compensate by observing a wide array of historical events in human history. Additionally, Chalmers also documents the presence of other entities that either exist or visit outside the Space-Time, which includes a mysterious It that can move “through strange curves and outrageous angles,” the Doels (more on them in future articles) and of course the Hounds of Tindalos.

the_hounds_of_tindalos_by_nottsuo-d9sed54 The Hounds of Tindalos by Nottsuo (www.deivantart.com)

We know the Hounds exist outside of Space-Time but we don’t know if they originate from there. Were they visitors who got stuck outside and have remained there? Or maybe they are the refugees from a long dead Universe, living on the outskirts of our Space-Time. The one thing we do know is once an entity from our Space-Time is recognized by the Hounds, they can easily track that entity (in this case Chalmers) to their Space-Time, entering it through angles. However, to what end? Once the Hounds recognize an entity, what do they want with it?

When the Hounds eventually track down Chalmers investigators found him stretched out on his back in his apartment dead.  He was naked and his chest and arms were covered with a foul-smelling bluish pus, ichor or slime. His head was removed from his neck and was laying on his chest. While his head was “twisted and torn and horribly mangled,” there was no trace of blood. This may be a key point in reference to the Hounds. They exist outside of Space-Time but if they encounter an entity from a specific Universe, they lock on their “scent.” What this scent is we don’t know; it could be signature of DNA, the entity’s consciousness, brain activity or other life signature, or some other factor associated with being bound in Space-Time. Once the Hounds have the scent eventually they find their prey and apparently feed on their blood. However, it appears that they cannot survive too long in our bound Space-Time and immediately disappear back into the void outside of Space-Time.

49-hound of tindalos                                                                                  The Hound of Tindalos by Michael Bukowski (www.yog-blogsoth.blogspot.com)

In conclusion, anyone doing research on the structure and nature of reality, particularly if this research includes surveys or investigations outside of Space-Time, whether this includes the use of drugs, sensory deprivation or high particle physics, need to be wary of The Hounds of Tindalos.  I do want to mention that Mr. Jim Moon will be posting a reading of “The Hounds of Tindalos” very soon and you can find that on www.hypnogoria.com or on iTunes at the Hypnobobs Podcast. Please look out for that since Jim’s readings of weird tales is always extremely enjoyable.

Next time we will H.P. Lovecraft’s “The Statement of Randolph Carter.” Thank you – Fred.

the_hounds_of_tindalos_by_douzen-d8iem99 The Hounds of Tindalos by Douzen (www.deviantart.com)

The Hounds of Tindalos, Part 4: Can Life Exist Without Enzymes?

hound_of_tindalos_experiment_2_by_kingovrats-d6c30bz  The Hounds of Tindalos – Experiment 2 by KingOvRats (www.deviantart.com)

An excerpt from Frank Belknap Long’s “The Hounds of Tindalos”

Report of James Morton, chemist and bacteriologist:

            My dear Mr. Douglas:

            The fluid sent to me for analysis is the most peculiar that I have ever examined. It resembles living protoplasm, but it lacks the peculiar substances known as enzymes. Enzymes catalyze the chemical reactions occurring in living cells, and when the cell dies they cause it to disintegrate by hydrolyzation. Without enzymes protoplasm should possess enduring vitality, i.e., immortality. Enzymes are the negative components, so to speak, of unicellular organism, which is the basic of all life. That living matter can exist without enzymes biologists emphatically deny. And yet the substance that you have sent me is alive and it lacks these “indispensable” bodies. Good God, sir, you realize what astounding new vistas this opens up?

This report at the conclusion of Frank Belknap Long’s “The Hounds of Tindalos” is one of the rare instances where a direct scientific analysis was conducted on an entity thought to originate from beyond our Space-Time. I want to address two points made by Mr. Morton in his report. First, Morton mentions that the blue, viscus, biological material sent to him lacked enzymes, which are essentially globular proteins that catalyze almost all biological reactions in cells (more on this later). However, I want to analyze his statement – “Without enzymes protoplasm should possess enduring vitality…”

The development and use of the microscope in the 17th century by Antoine van Leeuwenhoek and Robert Hooke revealed a microscopic world of unicellular life, such as the animalcules, as well as the idea that cells were the biological building blocks of organisms. As microscopes became more powerful the details within the cells revealed components such as organelles and cytoplasm. Initially, the material inside the cell was called protoplasm and thought of as a mystical substance that gave life its “vital” forces; such ideas were thought to correlate well with Aristotle’s concept of the soul, which lead to the concept of vitalism (Life on the Edge: The Coming Age of Quantum Biology by Johnjoe McFadden and Jim Al-Khalili, 2014).  Vitalism was a popular idea in the 19th century and essentially stated that life was animated by a special force absent from non-living material.

antonie-van-leeuwenhoek-animalcules                                                                          Illustration of some of the animalcules Antoine van Leeuwenhoek observed in his microscope (www.famousscientists.org)

Through the 19th century and into the early 20th century biochemical compounds were identified within the cell and subsequently synthesized in the laboratory.  Eventually these compounds were called enzymes and it was eventually revealed that they operate under the same natural laws of physics and chemistry of non-living matter, vitalism gave way to mechanistic materialism (Johnjoe McFadden and Jim Al-Khalili, 2014).  H.P. Lovecraft was a firm materialist so he would not have been very supportive of vitalism.  In contrast, Long had a completely different view of vitalism in “The Hounds of Tindalos,” where enzymes are the negative component of the cell, limiting the potential for vitality to secure immortality. So what exactly are enzymes?

Enzymes are essentially catalysts to biochemical functions. This means they essentially “speed up” (by “speeding up” they lower the activation energy threshold so the reaction can occur) biochemical reactions that otherwise would move at a rate far too slow for life to exist (Johnjoe McFadden and Jim Al-Khalili, 2014).  For example, collagenase is an enzyme that breakdown down animal collagen fibers. In the presence of this enzyme this form of decomposition takes about 30 minutes; however, in its absence it would take more than 68 million years. Clearly, enzymes are “vital” to life on Earth.

tindalos 900pKLTurner_lovecraftbestiary.blogspot.com Hound of Tindalos by K.L. Turner (www.lovecraftbestiary.blogspot.com)

According to the report provided by Morton enzymes are a “negative component” of life, responsible for the eventual death of the cell. In fact, enzymes are better described as “the engines of life” (Johnjoe McFadden and Jim Al-Khalili, 2014).  All of life, at least life as we understand it, depends on enzymes for its operation. From metabolism, to photosynthesis, to respiration, to decomposition, to the replication of DNA, all biochemical activities are reactions depends on enzymes. In a way, enzymes can be thought of as little biological nanomachines.

If the Hounds of Tindalos have no enzymes, as least as we recognize enzymes as globular proteins, how do their biochemical reactions operate? A number of hypotheses are being proposed.

  1. While the globular protein enzymes are the catalysts for life on Earth, many some other organic or inorganic substance serves as the catalyst for the Hounds physiology. For example, a simple mixture of hydrogen gas and oxygen gas has no recreation; however, if finely divided platinum is added, an explosive reaction occurs and water is created (Elements of Biological Science by William T. Keeton and Carol Hardy McFadden, 1983). The platinum (an inorganic element) is the catalyst in this reaction. Thus, in Hound physiology, some otherwise unknown or unidentified element or compound may serve as the catalyst, or enzyme.

 

  1. An alternative hypothesis is based on the fact that if the Hounds themselves are not just from another Universe but are entirely out of Space-Time (of our Universe or others) then time may not work for them as it does for us. Their biochemistry may not be limited to the constraints of our Space-Time, even when they enter ours. This means that their biochemistry is not “time-dependent” like ours and thus may function without the need for catalysts such as enzymes. Of course this may indicate that their existence in our Space-Time may be very limited or even fleeting; staying too long in our Space-Time, the Hounds may eventually succumb to the erosion of time and their biochemistry may cease to function.

 

  1. Yet another hypothesis may be associated with the fledging field of quantum biology, which attempts to explain and predict biology (particularly at the biochemical level) using concepts developed through quantum mechanics. This would be a whole series of articles onto themselves and may aid in our attempts to understand the Old Ones; however, for now this discussion will be limited to the subject of enzymes. From a quantum perspective, enzymes (catalysts in general) can be understood through Transition State Theory (TST). The intermediate stage between prior to and after the enzyme has reduced the activation energy threshold to accomplish its biochemical goal is called the Transition State. It is hypothesized that the Hounds from Tindalos can somehow keep their atoms in a perpetual transitional state, avoiding the need for enzymes. Such “quantum tunneling” would avoid the need to overcome the activation energy threshold in our standard biochemical reactions.

 

212_Enzymes-01_www.cnx.org Enzymes lower the activation energy threshold to allow biochemical reactions to occur faster.  Do the Hounds of Tindalos avoid this through “quantum tunneling?” (www.cnx.org)

Of course there may be other alternative hypotheses or we as a species in this Space-Time may be unable to comprehend how the biology of the Hounds of Tindalos even operates. Our limited five senses may be unable to understand the Hounds. However, even if this is the case, this will not stop us continuing to attempt to under the nature of entities from outside of our Universe or even Space-Time. Next time we wrap up our discussion on “The Hounds of Tindalos.” Thank you – Fred.

a_hound_of_tindalos_by_dhaem17                                A Hound of Tindalos by Dhaem17 (www.deivantart.com)

The Hounds of Tindalos, Part 3: More Evidence for an Euclidean Form of Life

FBL_CoC                                                     The Hounds of Tindalos on the cover of “Crypt of Cthulhu,” edited by Dr. Robert M. Price. Artwork by <meta http-equiv=”refresh” content=”0; URL=/?_fb_noscript=1″ /> Stephen E. Fabian and shows the “Hounds” as angular or Euclidean forms of life.

Based on what we know about the history of Earth, after the Elder Thing created eukaryotic cells and discarded a large portion of this biological material into the environment of early Earth, life proliferated and speciation occurred through natural selection. Over the history of life on Earth, we know of five mass extinctions with the most well-known being the Cretaceous – Tertiary mass extinction, which occurred approximately 65 million years ago. This is the one that wiped out the dinosaurs. As noted in a previous article this particular mass extinction may have been due to a close encounter with Ghroth, the Harbinger.

The earliest mass extinction was the Ordovician – Silurian mass extinction, which occurred approximately 443 million years ago. During this event about 85% of all sea life went extinct (www.bbc.co.uk), including the trilobites, which were the dominant form of life on Earth at the time. However, not all ancient life was wiped out through mass extinctions. Prior to the first mass extinction, between 635 and 541 million years ago during the Ediacaran Period, the dominant forms of life were an unusual group of sessile (stationary) organisms called rangeomorphs.

Rangeomorphs_www.livescience.com       Rangeomorphs were an ancient group of fractal organisms that dominated the primeval seas approximately 600 million years ago (www.livescience.com).

During the Ediacaran Period, the dominant form of life on Earth – the rangeomorphs – had an extreme form of Euclidean, morphological geometry that exhibit self-similarity or repeated patterns at various scales; such objects are said to have fractal dimension. While straight lines and classical Euclidean geometry is relatively rare in nature, fractal geometry is still present. An example of this is the shape and morphology of fern (see below). Other examples include the shapes of snowflakes or naturally forming crystals. Back in the Ediacaran Period fractal organisms dominated the nutrient-rich seas. Unfortunately for them, the eventual development of mobile organisms that can hunt or graze upon benthic creatures that remain stationary is hypothesized to be responsible for their extinction (www.livescience.com). Thus, essentially these fractal animals that lived as plants in the end went extinct once they became prey for more mobile organisms.

HofT_KrisztianHartmann_ArtStation.com                               Hound of Tindalos by Krisztian Hartmann (www.ArtStation.com)

While the Hounds of Tindalos are not the product of Terran evolution, nor are they even residents of our Universe, they may represent an extreme fractal form of life from another Universe. As I previously suggested curves and non-Euclidean geometry tend to be more common in nature than classical Euclidean geometry. However, the Hounds may originate from a fractal Universe where curves are as alien to them as the third dimension is to a two dimensional “flatlander.”

Carl_Sagan                Carl Sagan explaining how it would be difficult for a 2 dimensional being to perceive the true nature of a 3 dimensional being. The same may be said about the Hounds of Tindalos – can they even perceive curves and non-Euclidean geometry? Is that is the case, can we really perceive their true nature?

I would like to conclude this article by letting those know who have submitted questions, statements or hypotheses that I will be responding to them shortly.  I’ve been very busy this summer but will respond.  Many of you have stated that straight lines are more common in nature than I conveyed in the previous article.  Yes, I would agree that straight lines are present in nature, and in fact Euclidean geometry is present as in the case of fractals such as snowflakes and ferns; however, curvatures and non-Euclidean geometry is still more common and pervasive that Euclidean geometry (at least in nature). Indeed, a lot of what we perceive as a straight line is in fact not. For example, while the horizon of where the sea means the sky may be perceived as a straight line it is in fact curved. The curvature of the Earth is why ships seem to “sink” into the sea as opposed to keep getting smaller and smaller until the disappear.  Another example would be sunlight – some would say sunlight is a straight line when in reality is actually a dual form of energy as both a photon particle and a wave, which is not Euclidean.  I need to confirm this but I don’t think much of quantum mechanics could be represented or explained as Euclidean geometry. In any event, I must admit that I probably over-hyped the point that Euclidean geometry is rare in nature. While it may not be rare in nature, it is certainly not as common as non-Euclidean geometry.

HofT_kingovrats.dev                               Hound of Tindalos by KingOvRats (www.deviantart.com)

Next time we will discuss the truly alien biology of the Hounds themselves.  Thank you – Fred.

The Hounds of Tindalos, Part 2: Residents from an Euclidean Space-Time

tindalos3_TorenAtkinson_gwthomas.org                     Hounds of Tindalos by Toren Atkinson (www.gwthomas.org)

“Time is merely our imperfect perception of a new dimension of space. Time and motion are both illusions. Everything that has existed from the beginning of the world exists now. Events that occurred centuries ago on this planet continue to exist in another dimension of space. Events that will occur centuries from now exist already. We cannot perceive their existence because we cannot enter the dimension of space that contains them.”

This passage from Frank Belknap Long’s “The Hounds of Tindalos” may be a direct reference to the existence of multiverses, stitched or linked together not spatially but on a temporal basis, through time.  Some evidence suggests that space-time was created as a result of the Big Bang.  Additionally, while these universes may be completely inaccessible to one another, at least with what science currently tells us, they may have the common thread of time (see the lower right hand section of illustration below).  Thus, if the Hounds can travel outside of space and time, they may have the ability to move from one multiverse to another.

big_bang_nageo From National Geographic

In the same paragraph Long does go on to say, “Human beings as we know them are merely fractions, infinitesimally small fractions of one enormous whole. Every human being is linked with all the life that has preceded him on this planet. All of his ancestors are parts of him. Only time separates him from his forebears, and time is an illusion that does not exist.”

This second half of the paragraph sounds like some of the text that Clark Ashton Smith used to document the dissolution of Paul Tregardis in “Ubbo-Sathla.” As Paul gazed into a strange orb-like crystal he, “…seemed to live unnumbered lives, to die myriad deaths, forgetting each time the death and life that had gone before.” Also, “Life by life, era by era, he retraced the long and groping cycles…” These passages indicate that they may be a way for humans to remove themselves out of our space-time and/or perceive the multiverses at the same time, in effect traveling through time. In the case of Paul Tregardis this was accomplished through the use of a strange, milky orb-like crystal, while in the “Hounds of Tindalos” Halpin Chalmers accomplished this with the use of the drug Liao. In each case there was a terrible price to pay. However, these similarities of traveling through space-time through the interconnectedness of a specific entity does beg the question – is there some relationship between Ubbo-Sathla and the Hounds of Tindalos?

Ubbo_brawlofcthulhu.blogspot.com

Is there a connection between the Hounds and Ubbo-Sathla? (www.brawlofcthulhu.blogspot.com)

One of the main points made about the Hounds is that they are residents of “angular time.” Humans, our world and our universe is all structured as curved space-time. While this is an extreme oversimplification, our three-dimensional space is curved in the fourth dimension of time (Nothing: A Very Short Introduction by Frank Close; 2009). As Einstein demonstrated the gravity associated with mass in universe bends or curves light and space. Gravity is also the reason way planets and stars are spherical. In addition, nature itself is very curved.  For example, cells are spherical and details measurements of the human brain currently being conducting are using tools associated with curvilinear space.  Straight lines are somewhat rare nature while curves clearly dominate the nature world (see below). Another way of describing our curvilinear universe is by calling it non-Euclidean. Thus, we are very non-Euclidean, curvilinear organisms.

dt_common_streams_StreamServer

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curves Examples of the non-Euclidean structure of nature

While nature is very non-Euclidean humans are far more comfortable in Euclidean geometry and engineering. The Euclidean approach to design and building has served our civilization well over the centuries, through the building of the pyramids to the construction of bridges to the design of space probes, we depend on Euclidean mathematics and geometry in our everyday life. We depend on it so much so that when confronted with the non-Euclidean geometry of Cthulhu’s city of R’lyeh we are disoriented and confused (of course complicating this are other distortions in our space-time relative to Cthulhu itself but that is another discussion).

r_lyeh_by_moonlight_by_2manyworlds-d910yx7.png R’lyeh by Moonlight (by 2manyworlds found at http://www.deviantart.com)

So what does all of this have to do with the Hounds of Tindalos?  Based on Chalmers use of the drug Liao and his investigations, the Hounds are a form of Euclidean life that is very different from organisms within our curvilinear universe. Thus, while we exist in a curved space-time, the Hounds must reside within an angular (Euclidean) space-time. Chalmers called our curved universe “pure” while the angular universe as “foul.” I think this was more of an anthropomorphic attempt to express the strangeness of the Hounds’ angular, Euclidean universe.

Hannes_Bok_1946_ArkhamHouse Hannes Bok’s interpretation of the Hounds of Tindalos may have convey their true angular, Euclidean structure and biology

If the Hounds are essentially a form of angular life, this would contribute toward the idea that they live outside of our space-time and can only enter our reality through angles. In a strange way, our Euclidean approach to architecture and engineering has made it easier for the Hounds to enter our reality. As our civilization has become more technologically advanced and continues to move more away from nature, the more Euclidean we have become. Think of all of the buildings, structures, machines and devices that now exist. From the world’s largest buildings to the smallest personal devices, there are a countless number of angles for the Hounds of Tindalos to enter our space-time. Is this why many of the Old Ones (e.g. Cthulhu) and other alien civilizations (e.g. Elder Things, Mi-Go) avoid the use of Euclidean geometry? To avoid opening a portal between curved space-times and angular space-times? If the portal was large enough would a collision between universes create another Big Bang? Chilling questions to say the least.

Next time we will talk about the “biology” of the angular, Euclidean Hounds of Tindalos. Thank you – Fred.

The Hounds of Tindalos, Part 1: Long’s Philosophy of Science

 

HofT_KeglevichVonBuzin_dev.jpg                               The Hounds of Tindalos by Keglevich Von Buzin (www.deviantart.com)

I originally thought of conducting a scientific assessment of Frank Belknap Long’s “The Hounds of Tindalos” back in 2014. However, after I re-read the tale (first time in over 10 years) I was overwhelmed by the amount of material stuffed into that short story. It reminds me of Lovecraft’s “From Beyond” – a lot of scientific ideas and concepts crammed into such a short passage of words. Thus, while I started the assessment back in 2014 I never finished it. Now I thought it was time has come to conduct a scientific analysis of “The Hounds of Tindalos” but to this do will require multiple articles. This first article covers Long’s philosophy of science.

As cited by Dr. Robert M. Price in his notes in The Tindalos Cycle (edited by Robert M. Price; 2010), Halpin Chalmers’s investigations into the Hounds was different than those of many of the investigators documented by H.P. Lovecraft. Specifically, Chalmers is more of a mystic than a scientist; however, at the same time he has some very strong opinions on the philosophy of science. Chalmers scoffs at modern science and scientific dogmatism and states, “…old alchemists and sorcerers were two-thirds right, and that your modern biologist and materialist is nine-tenths wrong.”

300px-TindalosCycle

Chalmers repudiates the conclusion of biologists and says he distrusts the scientific positivism of Haeckel and Darwin. So what is scientific positivism? Auguste Comte (1798 – 1857) was a French philosopher who developed sociology and the doctrine of positivism, which was one of the first modern philosophical assessments of science. Essentially, positivism is the view that the world and universe is governed by natural laws and if someone could discover all of these laws, such as Newtonian mechanics, he would be able to predict all natural phenomenon. Comte was inspired by Darwin’s Theory of Natural Selection and was convinced that all was predetermined by natural laws, as discovered by science, and there could not be a higher power (www.scienceleadership.org).

Positivism may sound a lot Hugh Elliot’s mechanistic materialism, a philosophical view Lovecraft thought highly of, which states that the universe is a large “machine” operating under the laws of physics and chemistry. However, unlike positivism, mechanistic materialism states that with our five senses we are fairly limited in truly understanding and exploring the mechanisms of the Universe and so we will never completely understand how it operates. Such concepts have obviously made their way into many Lovecraftian tales such as “From Beyond” as well as Long’s “The Hounds of Tindalos.”

hound_of_tindalos_by_manzanedo-d5m0fhq.jpg The Hounds of Tindalos by Manzanedo (www.deviantart.com)

Chalmers distrusts the positivism of Haeckel and Darwin; however, neither of these scientists were responsible for positivism. Again, Comte used the concepts and ideas of natural selection, which were developed by others, to support his idea of positivism so Chalmers wrongly accuses Haeckel and Darwin to promote this philosophy. Additionally, I believe Darwin would have been the first to admit in his lifetime that his Theory of Evolution could not predict all in the natural world. In Darwin’s time the exact mechanism associated with passing traits from parents to offspring was largely unknown (at least those who were not yet familiar with the work of Gregory Mendel). Ironically, by the 1950’s the discovery of DNA and its role in genetically transferring traits from parents to offspring provided additional support for Comte’s positivism (www.scienceleadership.org).

In sharp contrast to the distrusting biologist, Chalmers had a very different view of the physicist Einstein.  He called Einstein “a priest of transcendental mathematics,” a mystic and explorer who at least partially understood the true nature of time through his mathematics. However, according to Chalmers a more complete understanding of time could only be achieved through insight and this insight could only be acquired with the use of drugs.

In contrast, Chalmers claims biologists scoff at time. I do not understand this statement since biologists, particularly those who study evolution are fully aware of time. As I have mentioned several times, evolution is essentially, “change over time” so if any group of scientists is well aware of how important time is, its biologists and evolutionary scientists. However, this apparent disdain Chalmers has for biologists does become  more apparent in the concluding paragraphs of “The Hounds of Tindalos.”

hound_of_tindalos_by_verreaux-d64c1is The Hounds of Tindalos by Verreaux (www.deviantart.com)

As far as Einstein was concerned, he stated “I am not a Positivist. Positivism states that what cannot be observed does not exist. This conception is scientifically indefensible, for it is impossible to make valid affirmations of what people ‘can’ or ‘cannot’ observe. One would have to say ‘only what we observe exists,’ which is obviously false.” (The Quotable Einstein, edited by Alice Calaprice, 2005). Given what Darwin knew or understood about hereditary at the time, I am sure he would also claimed that he too was not a Positivist.

Next time we will discuss the hypothesis that the “Hounds” may be manifestations of residual life from a previous Universe. Thank you – Fred.