We are pleased to present this excerpt from "The Power of Space and Reincarnation" by Alan Watts. What is space and can we measure it in the same way we measure our physical world? We are always looking for the answers, can we find them?
I began by reviewing two possible concepts of the nature of space. One that it is simply an abstraction, and projected upon the physical world in rather the same way that we project measurements. Lines of latitude and longitude or the cutting up of another abstraction called time into divisions like hours, minutes and seconds, which are there only on the dial of a clock. The earth in its rotation doesn't tick and time is of course thus seen simply as a measure of change as between two changing processes, The changing process of the clock, and the changing process of say a person’s running around.
It is out of that relationship, in other words, that you get a concept of time. And similarly, through being able to measure distances, in a similar way, we get a concept of space. You see, this is one point of view, that it’s an abstraction because force would be lent to this point of view by the fact that space itself isn’t really there. Space is just absence, and you must be very careful, as Whitehead would have said, not to make a thing out of something that isn’t there at all.
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