REFLECTIONS ON THE EINSTEIN THEORY 675
In the Theory of Relativity of Whitehead, and in some others writers who deal with the theory of Einstein, and particularly in all critics of Einstein, we find a similar objedification of terms.
They still feel the older E and . 'absolute emptiness', 'absolute space', 'absolute time', to which terms they ascribe structural objectivity. In such works the term 'contraction' is used frequently.
Let me recall the mechanism of objectification. If we do not reject explicitly and implicitly the 'is' of identity, we automatically identify different orders of abstractions and ascribe objective characteristics to terms. Thus the term 'time' which represents a label for a feeling inside our skin, is given an objective evaluation. If 'objective' it must have a 'property' of 'simultaneity', a semantic process taken over from comparing two objective sticks when the two ends are made to coincide. On the objective external level, we never deal with 'time' but we simply compare processes. When we select an arbitrary unit-process on the objective level, whatever we might say that it 'is', well, it is not, and the difficulty is found exclusively in the use of the 'is' of identity.
If we abandon entirely the 'is' of identity, we stop objectification, we do not ascribe objective existence and values outside our skin, to terms and semantic reactions inside our skin. But then of course we have to change the structure of our language; as otherwise the old s.r will continue to play tricks on us. An actional, operational, functional language of order is the structural solution of our semantic difficulty.
If we objectify 'space' into 'absolute space', we must objectify it as 'absolute emptiness' for only such an 'absolute space' can be at 'absolute rest', that is, static in the E or N sense. Similarly only objectified 'time' can have the 'property' of 'absolute simultaneity'.
If we realize that these 'absolutes' are only the semantic objectifications of terms, (where the activities of the lower nerve centres are structurally ascribed to the activities of the higher nerve centres and vice versa), we begin to differentiate between different order abstractions, and to keep them differentiated. In terms of our structurally new language we become 'conscious of abstracting', and then habitually and unconsciously use the behaviouristic language and methods of order.
If we picture this 'absolute emptiness' or 'absolute nothingness' (which cannot be done successfully, as it has no meaning), and try to compare it with a plenum, or 'fulness' (a cloud of smoke, for instance), we see at once that only this 'absolute emptiness' can be static, homogeneous. , a condition that is impossible with a dynamic fulness.
Perhaps we can now appreciate the tremendous semantic significance of the Einstein theory, which introduces structurally a non-objectified, human, sane attitude of proper evaluation toward this world. We should not be surprised to find that a-system which is an inevitable general structural concomitant of theand systems of geometry and physics should formulate as a general structural and semantic issue what the and systems have done in their special fields, without such general formulation.