more from Carlo Rovelli

Single Idea 20459

[catalogued under 27. Natural Reality / B. Modern Physics / 2. Electrodynamics / c. Electrons]

Full Idea

Electrons don't always exist. They exist when they interact. They materialize when they collide with something. The quantum leap from one orbit to another constitutes their way of being real. An electron is a combination of leaps between interactions.

Gist of Idea

Electrons only exist when they interact, and their being is their combination of quantum leaps


Carlo Rovelli (Reality is Not What it Seems [2014], 04)

Book Reference

Rovelli,Carlo: 'Reality is Not What it Seems', ed/tr. Carnell/Segre [Penguin 2016], p.101

A Reaction

If a philosopher with an Aristotelian interest in the nature of matter wants to grasp the modern view, the electron looks like the thing to focus on. You can feel Rovelli battling here to find formulations that might satisfy a philosopher.