Morphological Flows and Sustainable Growth/Creation of elementary particles

Creation of elementary particlesEdit

1- Starting point of morphological flows: Elementary Particles

2.1-Creation of the universe- The Big Bang/Inflationary model

2.2- Dark Energy and Dark Matter

2.3- Galaxy Formation

3- Chaotic Morphological Flows

1- Starting point of Morphological Flows: Elementary Particles-

As we saw in the introductory piece, morphologies flow up in the order of hierarchical complexity. So naturally at the bottom we expect to find the simplest of morphologies. And we do, they are elementary particles and they bind to form everything in the periodic table of elements as we will see in the next chapter.

To the best of our understanding thus far, we have the following elementary particles table:






Mass (MeV/c2)

Electric Charge













Electron neutrino




Muon neutrino




Tau neutrino








































Gauge Bosons
























Some Sample Hadrons






Mass (MeV/c2)

Electric Charge

Quark Content

Positive pion





Positive kaon




















For each of these particles, except the photon, gluon, and Z-boson, there is an antiparticle with the same mass and opposite charge. Because quarks cannot be isolated, the masses given for them are approximate.


Of these particles, photon (the unit of light) has the simplest morphology. It consists of an oscillating electrical-magnetic field. If  the pattern of morphological flows are to hold, then we should expect more complex particles to be born from photons. And, that is exactly what we find. It is called pair production, for example we can observe high energy photons (gamma rays) splitting into electrons and positrons. So, a photon, a particle without any charge or mass, splits into an electron-positron (matter, anti-matter) pair, each with charge and mass. This simple morphological step leads to creation of matter (with mass and therefore gravity), charge (binding atoms and molecules) and space-time itself. To understand the last part, we must understand what happens when things move at near the speed of light (relativistic speeds).

Photon Electro-Magnetic Diagram


Lets consider the twins paradox. One twin (Jim) is on earth and his brother (John) travels on a spaceship at near the speed of light holding a clock and a yard stick. To Jim, John's yardstick shrinks and his clock's ticks expand (slow down). In fact from Jim's perspective, at the speed of light, John's yardstick shrinks to zero and his time clock takes an infinity to tick. So should John come back he'll find that his brother died forever ago, while he aged next to nothing. Of course that can't happen because at the speed of light John is all photons and no matter. And that is the whole point. From a photon's perspective, our concept of space-time is irrelevant. It is only when particles are created that their speed drops to below the speed of light. Only then space-time is born. But even then it is nothing like you and I know. You see at those speeds and scales, particles live in a quantum world. In that world a particle is like a blob of energy that occupies a space-time range, not a fixed point. A particle is here and there, sooner and later, all be it in extremely small space-time scales. It is when particles bind to form atoms (proton-neutron-electron combinations) that their speed drops to something closer to ours. And as they bind to create molecules (the stuff all around us) our familiar notion of space-time comes to form.

I know this sounds out-of-worldly to us because it is. But space-time transform (known as Lorentz transform) is regularly used in particle physics calculations. And we owe every digital device to the knowledge of the quantum world (quantum mechanics). These concepts simply don't register within our notion of what is physical. And that is the whole point: reality is in fact abstract. As we form abstractions and corroborate them and do calculations with them and build devices with them, then our notion of reality expands. Our aperture of perception expands. So reality is abstract, the subset of it that registers on our minds and are commonly corroborated form our sense of known reality. And the subset of known reality that registers on our 5 physical senses form our sense of what is physical. Back to the matter (pun intended) at hand. Particles have mass, and therefore gravity. It is this force that binds matter in large scales to create galaxies and stars. Particles may have charge, as in proton (positive) and electron (negative). These electric charges give rise to electro-magnetic forces. It is the electro-magnetic force that binds electrons and protons (and neutrons) to create molecules. As atoms come in contact in stars, as we will see in the next chapter, the strong nuclear forces bind the nuclei of matter to create hierarchy of elements. Finaly the weak nuclear force can break up radioactive nuclei. These four forces, gravitation, electro-magnetism, strong and weak nuclear forces are responsible for the reactions that bring about galaxies, stars, planets, organic material, life and us. As we traverse the morphological flows we will follow the shapes (morphologies) and the forces that act on the morphologies. Simply put, morphological flows consists of shapes and forces that act on them to create further shapes.

Of all of the permutations of combinations of particles, the proton-neutron-electron combinations have proved to be stable enough to form massive hydrogen-helium gas clouds, the simplest atoms (as morphological flows would predict). As you see consistently through out all of the morphological flows that is the signature of creation and destruction. Lower morphological entities mix and match in a chaotic manner, the resulting forms that are stable perpetuate and the unstable ones decay into their constituent parts.

Continuing the tale, the hydrogen clouds condense to form galaxies. The stars in the galaxies go on to produce the basis of the matter in the universe that we see today (as you will observe in the next chapter). And that is the realm of cosmology, understanding the big picture. So lets cover that next.

2.1- Creation of the universe- The Big Bang/Inflationary model- The prevailing theory says that all energy-matter in our space-time bubble was created in a Big Bang event. The event created an inflating space-time bubble full of super-hot elementary particles. As the bubble expanded, the particle soup cooled down to the point that the present protons, neutrons and electrons had a chance to bind and create elemental atoms of hydrogen. Massive hydrogen clouds, under gravitational attraction, coalesced to form galaxies (Source:


Let's start with some observations and see how they lead to the big bang and inflationary models for the creation of the universe. The main observation, now termed Hubbell's law (named after the person who made the observation), is that galaxies are moving away from each other, i.e. the universe is expanding. He did that by looking at the radiation signature of known elements like hydrogen in distant galaxies. Say, hydrogen when thermally excited radiates at a given frequency. If the object is moving towards you, the wavelengths squeeze together making it appear a bit bluer, if it moves away from you the opposite happens and it appears redder. We call this the red shift. Almost every thing is red shifted regardless of what direction we look, meaning everything is moving away from everything. The exception is nearby galaxies (in galaxy groups) that are relatively moving towards one another, but all distant galaxies appear to be moving apart. So imagine in your mind, a movie of these objects moving away from each other. Now reverse the movie and look at it going backwards in time, everything will be moving towards each other. The logical conclusion would be that at some particular point and time every thing would come together. The big bang theory then proposes that it all started with a big bang that started the movie. Another observation that lends credence to the big bang idea is that of the cosmic background radiation. No matter in what direction we look, we find a radiation signature that corresponds to a temperature of ~3 degrees Kelvin. One explanation is that it is the after glow of the big bang event. So you had this initial explosion. Then everything cooled down (other than the regions where stars formed and heated back up again). And what we see today is the uniformly cooled aftermath of the big bang event that after some 14 billion years is now at a uniform ~3 K, regardless of where you look.

Big Bang Theory explains a lot of the observations but not all. You see, all matter at any given temperature vibrates. That motion results in it radiating at a given frequency. We can detect any frequency, so theoretically we should have a radiation signature of anything (any matter that is out there). There in is the problem, as we are about to see.

2.2- Dark Energy and Dark Matter- Suppose Big Bang is a given, it did explode 14 billion years ago and everything started to expand out as the result of the momentum of the explosion. So you have all these objects receding from one another. The only force exerting on them will be their mutual gravitational attraction pulling them towards one another, thereby counteracting the initial outward momentum. So over time you expect that the rate of expansion will slow down. People started to look at certain super-novas at large distances away, expecting to see slowed expansion the further out they looked. There would be more matter between us and the observed object, therefore more gravitational attraction, therefore more of a slow down. And taking that logic to conclusion, the objects farthest away, say 14 billion light years or so, would have all of the gravitational force of the universe acting on it and pulling it back and very little matter in front of it to attract it forward. At least that's what people thought. Well, the observations showed the exact opposite result. Not only distant objects aren't slowing down, the further out we look the more they are speeding away. And that is true for all directions. So there is something that is continually pushing these objects away from one another, something with negative gravity. And, this stuff, called dark energy, is evenly distributed because its effects are uniform regardless of what direction we look at. The problem is that we can't detect it with anything so far. The only effect we observe is the repulsive gravitation that I just described. So it is not matter, because that has positive gravity, pulling other matter towards it. It's not pure energy, ala photons, because that has no mass and no gravitation. Somebody had to call it something, so they call it dark energy.

And here is another observation. When we look at some galaxies, say our own milky way, we find most of the stellar matter bunched up around the core. By contrast, you have relatively little star formation in the outer bounds. Again if gravity was the only force in effect, then you'd have very fast rotation in the middle and relatively little rotation out on the perimeter. Think of your kitchen sink. When you have a lot of soap water (for those of you that have actually washed dishes), you see fast rotation near the drain and relatively little rotation on the outside. You'd expect that. You only have one force, gravity, effective at the drain and exerting most force on the nearby material. We don't see that in the case of the spiral galaxy of our example. The stars on the perimeter are moving at the same relative rate as the stuff in the middle. The outer stars don't drift off. They keep formation. So some other force is hemming them in. But nothing can be detected that could exert such a positive gravitational force. The same thing holds when we look at galactic groups and clusters, e.g. the Virgo super-cluster. We see all of these far-flung galaxies in the cluster and they keep formation. But there aren't enough observed matter in the cluster to pull them together. And if one calculates the amount of matter that it takes to exert the gravitational force to pull the galaxies together, one comes up with far more than the observed matter that is accounted for. So there is something out there, in vast quantities, that doesn't radiate and has positive, matter-like, gravitation. So people started calling it dark matter.

There is a whole cosmic industry trying to theorize the nature of dark energy-dark matter. And it is noteworthy that per our current theories and observations, it is thought that that dark stuff comprises some 90 percent of the energy budget of the universe. Some call this the golden age of cosmology because there is so much to be discovered. I personally call it the nickel age of cosmology because there is little money in it.

2.3- Galaxy Formation- Regardless of the theories of the creation of the universe and the problems therein, there are these elementary particles that start off the morphological flows. Among them, the stable electron-proton-neutrons bind to create the simplest atom, hydrogen, in vast quantities of gasses. As gas clouds become denser due to gravitational attraction they heat up and eventually coalesce to form proto-galaxies. Proto-galaxies are dense gas (mainly hydrogen) clusters that act as stellar nurseries. As proto-galaxies settle, we end up with the galaxies that we observe today. We see spiral galaxies, lenticular galaxies (spiral galaxies with missing spirals), elliptical galaxies that look like cosmic footballs, and irregular galaxies.

We often find galaxies in groups and groups within clusters. Irregular galaxies are thought to be galaxies that, under the influence of nearby galaxies in their group, never had a chance to form. Our own milky-way galaxy is orbited by 2 irregular galaxies called the large and the small Magellanic Clouds. Sometimes one galaxy in a group absorbs another galaxy in the group. Within the galaxies you typically find:

- Globular star clusters, large, compact aggregates of hundreds of thousands of stars, often the oldest stars in the galaxy.

- Stellar nebula remnants - As the stars develop, many of them leave nebulous remnants (planetary nebulae or supernova remnants) which then populate the galaxies.

- Outer-bound regions- the interstellar gas and dust tends to accumulate in clouds near an equatorial disk and flatten out at the outer regions, most conspicuous in spiral and lenticular galaxies.

- Interstellar clouds - huge diffuse nebulae where clusters of stars are formed.

- Nucleus- A rather dense galactic nucleus, which is somewhat similar to a super-large globular cluster. In many cases, galactic nuclei contain super-massive dark objects, which are often considered as Black Hole candidates.

3- Conclusion - Chaotic Morphological Flows- Note that the nature of creation is chaotic from the start. All of these elementary particles formed a massive particle soup that interacted, bonded and annihilated in a variety of ways. Of all of those interaction pathways, the resulting stable proton-neutron-electron combination survived and all of the unstable ones didn't. This binding of energy-matter to create morphologies is the essence of morphological flows. In the signature of Morphological Flows we see polar opposite forces in action right from the get go. Strong nuclear forces bind protons and neutrons to form atomic nuclei, whereas weak atomic forces result in nuclear decay. Electricity and magnetism form polar opposites. Even gravity apparently has a recently discovered anti-gravity corollary. And as we'll see in the upcoming chapters, the flow marches right on, creating atoms, molecules, organic material, cells, the tree of life, collectives, groups and societies. But through out all of these evolutionary realms, construction and destruction, interactivity and the resulting chaotic dynamics prevail, leading to stable entities that survive and unstable entities that die off. That is the case for particles, atoms and molecules. It is the case for Darwinian-biological evolution. It is the case for human, anthropological evolution. And it is the case for the evolution of ideas. Another inescapable conclusion is the abstract nature of the universe. As we saw, in the quantum world and the cosmic world things are very different from our notion of what is physical. But if you accept the abstract notion of physics, and understand that you can perceive the abstract through the minds eye, then once the abstractions are corroborated the aperture of perception expands, the notion of what is physical expands. And that is the key to our morphological growth, both individually and collectively.