Monday, May 30, 2011

science fact

Every now and then I'll read something, a piece of fiction, and I'll wish it were real. Harry Potter, for example. And sometimes I'll read something so convincing and so appealing that I pretend it's real.

(Preface: When I use the word "physical" in the following paragraphs, keep in mind I'm talking about physics.)

In the Ender series, Orson Scott Card creates a physical explanation for why we feel connected to each other. I won't go into the mechanics, but the "science" of it says that through proximity, emotional interactions, and other circumstances, beings (human and otherwise) develop a physical, though unseen, tie between one another.

OK, you're probably thinking, Well what's so special about that? Of course you'll grow closer to someone as you interact with them. Right. But that's not what I'm talking about here. I'm talking about using physics (about which I know very little) to explain how we grow closer to each other. Everyone knows friendships and relationships tend to grow as a function of time. But how do they grow, how and why does love develop, and is there some unseen physical event happening when all that goes down?

There are just some connections I don't know how to explain. Like being able to finish someone else's sentence, even if that might be a trivial example. It's like when you kiss a girl (or guy, depending on the reader's gender). It may or may not be the first time, but the second before you do it, somehow you know she wants it and somehow she knows you want to. It extends beyond body language, there's almost a palpable -- but subtle, quiet, unspoken -- communication taking place, and it lasts only an instant. It's an almost true understanding, truer than can be communicated by speaking. How do you physically explain that communication?

In the end, I know it doesn't matter whether or not this level of physics exists because regardless, physical or not, these bonds still exist. Call me a sci-fi romantic I guess, I just love the idea of a scientific explanation for love and attachment.


  1. i think this is akin to the way i feel when my lips meet a fudgsicle and i KNOW it was meant to be.

    but really, interesting food for thought. i bet the discovery channel could explain it...

  2. Alright, but the burden is on the Discovery Channel to make it more interesting/meaningful than OSC.