By Rich Fiori
A hologram according to Webster is “a three-dimensional image reproduced from a pattern of interference produced by a split coherent beam of radiation (laser)”.
There are several components to the creation of a hologram. The first component is the object to be reproduced. The second component is the “split beam of radiation”. The third component is the mirror setup. The fourth component is the“pattern of interference”. And the fifth component is the holographic plate or film. Together they compose a holographic image on the holographic plate or film.
The wave characteristic of light is essential to the creation of a hologram. A hologram is a photograph that does not use a lens and records both the phase and the amplitude of the images. Upon viewing, this technique provides us with a 3D image using a 2D “lens-less photo”.
Phase in this context is based on the wave properties of light. A simplistic explanation uses sine and cosine waves as an example of two waves out of phase by 90 degrees. Two sine waves would be considered in phase as would two cosine waves. In these examples, both the sine and cosine waves have the same frequency, which is the number of times the wave crosses the horizontal line (called the x axis) divided by 2. If waves have different frequencies they are by definition out of phase.
The amplitude is a measure of height (peak) of the wave, in other words, distance up from or down from the x axis. In our example, the peak of one wave might be higher/lower than the other. When discussing light waves, amplitude is a probability factor rather than an actual property of height. This is important because light is essential to many phenomena in physics including holography.
In holography a laser is split into two beams. One beam is directed at the object to be “photographed”. The other beam is deflected using two mirrors and intermingles with the reflection of the object (from the first beam). This creates a unique pattern that is captured on a holographic plate (film).
The pattern is completely encoded on the film with no discernible characteristics. The most important thing about this encoded film is that if you cut out a piece of it no matter how small or irregular, then shine a laser through it, it will reproduce the entire object. However, the image does get more out of focus with smaller pieces of film. This means the information needed to reproduce the object is everywhere on the film (non-local).
Additionally, holographic plates are capable of storing multiple images simply by changing the angle of the laser beams. For retrieval, just use the same angle used to produce the image and only that image appears. For this reason, there is a significant amount of information that can be stored on a one square inch (6.45 square centemeters) of film. It is on the order of 100 average size books.
Jean Fourier developed a way of reproducing any complicated wave pattern using a set of simple waves. This reproduction is called the Fourier transform. The Fourier transform is a mathematical method that is both simple and elegant that uses sine and cosine waves (sinusoids waves) to represent the original wave forms as the sum of sine and cosine waves. This sumation is known as the Fourier Series. The Fourier series can be used for all periodic waveforms: electromagnetic (such as TV and cell phone), and sound. An example of Fourier series would be a synthesizer that uses sine and cosine waves to reproduce any and all instruments. The Fourier transform is an integral function (calculus: integration) that describes frequency and amplitude in more amenable ways that make the original function easier to analyze. Additionally, Fourier transforms are completely reversible to the original function (calculus: derivative).
(Nota bene: when viewing the Fourier transforms, one can’t help but notice the similarities to probability wave functions.)
Using Fourier transform techniques any picture can be converted into a holographic interference pattern on a holographic plate and back again. The intriguing part of the Fourier transform technique is that it is wired into our brain and used for many functions including sight. In other words, our eyes/brain converts what we receive as phase and amplitude encoded light waves into a holographic plate image using Fourier transforms then displays that to our mind as a three dimensional image.
This opens to the idea that three dimensional reality is a hologram. Enter David Bohm. As explained in a earlier discussion the Copenhagen Interpretation of reality suggests nothing has form until observed. Before that, it has probability and nothing else. When thinking of the universe as a collection of distinct things, a paradox arises based on a thought experiment called the EPR paradox. However, when thinking that nothing is actually an independent thing then the paradox goes away. This way of thinking is dubbed Interconnectedness, that is everything is interconnected to everything else (the language is unable to actually describe this phenomenon since there are actually no things – nothingness).
Bohm proposed this idea, which he called quantum potential. This shattered the idea of causality and either refined or redefined the Copenhagen interpretation. He proposed that Consciousness and the external quantum world were in fact one indivisible “thing”. He also pointed out that the whole universe is one coordinated system and that location as we know it does not exist. Another conclusion of Bohm’s work theorized that everything is ordered (as in Chaos Theory). These conclusions were supported by Einstein and they served to debunk the idea that there is something faster than the speed of light.
John Bell proposed a thought experiment that showed there is no such thing as “local reality” if quantum mechanics is true. He essentially proved that everything is interconnected to everything else in the universe and thus nothing is actually just local. Stated more succinctly the statistical implications of quantum mechanics do not agree with a version of reality that contains only local specifications.
If we look at the universe as if it were a holographic plate then there are no thing images in the universe and everything in the universe is interconnected to everything else. Also, there is no local reality in the universe. Nothing is reality as we know it in the universe. However, as we observe the images in the universe (on the plate), we see there is an order to them. And through our native Fourier transform, we see local and far away objects, etc. We observe time passing through this mechanism.
The creation of the way we think (our physical bodies and what and how we are taught) about the universe is responsible for our ideas about duality, which is born out of the idea that everything is fragmented. The same is true for the duality of Consciousness separated from the quantum world. There are no separate entities in the universe, they are actually one continuous holographic plate and hologram.
The whole is indivisible. There is no local reality. Thus, the universe is holographic. Light waves are quintessential to understanding the universe, especially since light is involved with every determining aspect of our understanding of the universe. This has been sitting there waiting for us for a while. We are already wired to accept it once we understand it. It requires a change in perception intellectually and an acceptance emotionally by us in order to understand more fully the true nature of the universe (aka us).
Light and what it truly provides is still a mystery to science. It is involved in a fundamental way with and at the center of all the discoveries in physics for the last hundred or so years.
There is no difference between this science and perennial philosophy. There is no duality there. They are one entity attempting through us to find themselves.
Duality is a fabrication of the mind brought on by the way we think. Our languages and teachings vividly represent and foster the duality concept.
This article had to be written in the duality language of English and couldn’t be a complete representation of what I wanted to express. I hope the readers can take away from it what is pertinent to them.
Rich Fiori has a masters degree in mathematics and maintains hobbies in particle physics and music. He has dedicated his life to finding the truth.