What Is Certainty ?

Whenever we talk of certainty what do we mean?

That an event or thing will happen the way we expect it to happen?

Again what is ‘expected to happen?

We expect things to happen indicates that we have seen some things, events followed some events, some experienced by us, some by the others,

And we think the same pattern will follow.

Just  how scientific is this?

I am talking about Science here, because it what people think is the solution for every thing and Science is the club used to beat Philosophy and Religion.

When a religious information , or even a fact is presented, the immediate question, from the people, especially who profess to have a scientific temper(?), is,

How certain are you?

The same question is addressed to Philosophy.

You Talk of Reality God.

The retort is,

Is it certain?

Does it hold good for all times the past,, present and the future.

Philosophy and Religion take this very seriously and replies,

Yes, it holds good for all times and it is Eternal.

I think the answer is not can not be reasoned out for we can not verify, it.

As of now, we know things and events as they are or reported to be ‘were’

Not it ‘will be’

What we know is the Finite and we presume, that since there is some thing Finite, there has to be some thing Infinite.

Because we are conditioned to think, I do not know how, that there should be a pair of opposite.

True there are pairs of opposites in what we experience in Life, pleasure and Pain,Darkness and Light, Good and Bad,the  list goes on.

But by logic it need not be.

What has happened yesterday need not happen to morrow.

Our mind is programmed to find similarities,categories, uniformity  to make it easier for the Mind to categorize.

It is the mechanism of the Mind.

If we think it is in the outside world, then one has to accept the the Law of Uniformity of Nature and as a consequence must accept the Theory of Causation as well.

Law of Uniformity , at its best can only say that an event had happened, is happening in the present and no more.

Law of Causation can tell you an event is caused by another.

One event may be the Cause for many events and one result may be caused by more than one Cause(event)

There are many sub causes to make a particular Cause to produce one particular effect.

This, I shall deal, in a separate post

These sub or attendant  causes .’ along with the Primary Cause again assumes the law of Causation.

So Causation assumes Uniformity and Uniformity assumes Causation.

This is Logical fallacy. for each assumes the other as proven.

So ‘expecting’ , including the results of scientific experiments , is not logical.

One may say some result is expected, that’s all.

So since our definition of certainty is based on  Expectation, it is equally untenable.

Therefore, certainty is a Myth.

It can not be verified.

Curiously I find definitions on Uncertainty, not on Certainty.

I am providing information  at the end , on this.

This Uncertainty Principle gained recognition after the advent of Quantum Theory.

Here it is:

In 1927 Heisenberg suggested the uncertainty principle, which can be formulated now as follows:

If one tries to describe the dynamical state of a quantum particle by methods of classical mechanics, then precision of such description is limited in principle. The classical state of the particle turns out to be badly defined.

In 2005 the certainty principle was suggested, which is formulated as follows:

If one describes the dynamical state of a quantum particle (system) by methods of quantum mechanics, then the quantum state of the particle (system) turns out to be well defined. This certainty of the quantum dynamical state means that “small” space-time transformations can not substantially change the quantum state.

Both principles are not just some misty philosophy about uncertainty and certainty, but they have quite rigorous mathematical formulations in the form of the following inequalities:

(* note the smirk behind the word,’Philosophy’ while it says the same under the garb of Science.)

And the Heisenberg uncertainty principle is a consequence of the certainty principle. The certainty principle generalizes on the unified base both the uncertainty principle and the Mandelshtam-Tamm relation for energy and time (discovered in 1945).

A more detailed answer you can find in the paper The certainty principle (review).

An explanation for dummies is given in the article The certainty principle for dummies.

Should the certainty principle be considered more fundamental than the uncertainty principle?

From the point of view of non-relativistic quantum mechanics, the certainty principle is just more general.

But from the point of view of relativistic quantum theory, it is more fundamental.

The matter is that for the theory of relativistic quantum systems the notion of “space coordinate”, as a quantum-mechanical observable (a self-adjoint operator), is not natural. Correspondingly, the uncertainty principle turns out to be sapless.

Why did not Heisenberg, Bohr, Schrödinger, Fock… have a hunch of the certainty principle?

Because they did not know relativistic canonical quantization.

Fortunately, now that the certainty principle is already discovered, for its understanding it is sufficient a usual introductory course of quantum mechanics (knowledge of the RCQ-theory is not necessary).

A more concrete answer is given in the popular article The certainty principle for dummies.”


In simple English, it means that if you accept that the world alone is Real and Absolute, then the The Theories are Certain.

If there is more than one world, then the Certainty theory is not correct.

Now Quantum is proving that there are Multiverses(please read my posts on this subject under Astrophysics).

In conclusion there is no such thing as certainty at all, except in our Mind.

Shankaracharya deals this subject very eloquently  in his Mayavada theory, where he proves both  the Worlds, Relative and Real do exist side by side.


The Uncertainty Principle.

In quantum mechanics, the uncertainty principle is any of a variety of mathematical inequalities asserting a fundamental limit to the precision with which certain pairs of physical properties of a particle known as complementary variables, such as position x and momentum p, can be known simultaneously. For instance, the more precisely the position of some particle is determined, the less precisely its momentum can be known, and vice versa.[1] The original heuristic argument that such a limit should exist was given by Werner Heisenberg in 1927, after whom it is sometimes named the Heisenberg principle. A more formal inequality relating the standard deviation of position σx and the standard deviation of momentum σp was derived by Earle Hesse Kennard[2] later that year and by Hermann Weyl[3] in 1928,


4 responses to “What Is Certainty ?”

  1. Thanks for visiting my blog and reading my post.
    Great article!
    Science – as I understand it – is based on quantifying the universe. Understanding things in terms of quantity. In terms of what they are composed of…Well, that’s obviously one way of understanding the universe. But is it the only way? Is it the best way?
    These are important questions that must needs be asked.
    All the best 🙂


    • Some of these points are addressed by Hinduism.
      You might read posts of mine filed under Indian Philosophy,Hinduism, Astrophysics.
      Your views are welcome.


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