Objections to Einstein's theories of relativity

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The mainstream scientists like to present Einstein as being absolutely correct and science editors are often unfairly failing to present a balanced view on his theories, replacing it with bias and uncritical attitudes. The expression "theory of relativity" is rarely properly used or understood and it can denote various meanings. There are multiple theories of relativity such as Galileo's theory of relativity, Einstein's special and general theories of relativity etc. and the whole subject of relativity is usually blurred. A common reaction of experimental physicists to Einstein's theories is that although they do not understand it themselves, it is so widely accepted that it must be correct.[1] According to R.J. Anderton, Einstein made lots of mistakes that should be corrected.[2]

Whitehead: Einstein leaves the whole theory of measurement in a muddle

While accepting most of the outcomes of the special theory of relativity such as:[3]

  • the four dimensional space-time manifold,
  • the rejection of one-time system,
    *"I do not share the crusading spirit of the professional atheist whose fervor is mostly due to a painful act of liberation from the fetters of religious indoctrination received in youth. I prefer an attitude of humility corresponding to the weakness of our intellectual understanding of nature and of our own being." - Albert Einstein[4]
  • the general mathematical method of seeking frame-independent forms of law,

still Alfred North Whitehead's main objection to Einstein's general theory of relativity is that by accepting a heterogeneous space-time whose metrical properties are fully determined by the contingent distribution of matter, he leaves the whole antecedent theory of measurement in a muddle. Thus, in his own alternative to Einstein's theory, Whitehead suggests to retain the old distinction between geometry and physics. He therefore adopts a geometry that he identifies with a Minkowskian quasi-Euclidean geometry and treats gravity on par with other physical fields such as in electromagnetism. In mathematical expression, he distinguishes Einstein's fundamental metrical tensor into:

  • a Galilean tensor which includes Minkowski metric and
  • a tensor that represents a quality of "impetus" which can be associated with its electromagnetic and gravitational field. This latter one cannot be interpreted as representing a "metric of space-time" but only as the expression of properties of these fields. By refusing to accept Einstein's heterogeneous space-time, Whitehead rejects the general principle of relativity as well. This implies that in his theory it is not possible to distinguish between special and general theory of relativity, but he has the only one theory that encompasses both gravitational and electromagnetic fields.

From a purely mathematical point of view, Whitehead's theory is much simpler compared to Einstein's and the calculations can be obtained in a much easier way.[note 1] Whitehead himself showed that his theory is able to give the same predictions for standard tests of the theory of gravity as does Einstein's. Arthur Eddington proved that both theories share Karl Schwarzschild's Schwarzschild solution.


  1. cf. Occam's razor


  1. L.Essen (1971). The Special Theory of Relativity: A Critical Analysis. Oxford Science Research Papers, Clarendon Press, 1–2. Retrieved on July 26, 2013. 
  2. Roger J. Anderton. Criticism of the article "Why Pick on Einstein".
  3. Michal Andrle. Whitheadova Filosofie Přírody (in Czech, English summary). Prague: Charles University, 265, 405–407. ISBN 978-80-87378-22-9. 
  4. Isaacson, Walter (2008). Einstein: His Life and Universe (New York: Simon and Schuster), p. 390. Retrieved from GoogleBooks archive on February 19, 2015.