Wave Operators. Omniscience. God. Heaven. Charity. Atonement. Reconciliation. Love. Infinity. Part I.

“Maybe we’ve spent too long trying to figure this all out with theory. . . love isn’t something we invented. It’s observable, powerful. It has to mean something.”
“Love has meaning, yes. Social utility, social bonding, child rearing.”
“We love people who have died. Where is the social utility in that?”
“Maybe it means something more, something we can’t–yet–understand. Maybe it’s some evidence, some artifact of a higher dimension that we can’t consciously perceive. I’m drawn across the universe to someone I haven’t seen in a decade, who I know is probably dead. Love is the one thing we’re capable of perceiving that transcends dimensions of time and space. Maybe we should trust that, even if we can’t understand it . . .”

“I saw . . . my brother Alvin, that has long since slept; and marveled how it was that he had obtained an inheritance in that [Celestial] kingdom, seeing that he had departed this life before the Lord had set his hand to gather Israel the second time, and had not been baptized for the remission of sins. Thus came the voice of the Lord unto me, saying: All who have died without a knowledge of this gospel, who would have received it if they had been permitted to tarry, shall be heirs of the celestial kingdom of God; also all that shall die henceforth without a knowledge of it, who would have received it with all their hearts, shall be heirs of that kingdom; for I, the Lord, will judge all men according to their works,[and] according to the desire of their hearts.”

Scattering. Light comes from infinity, passes through transparent, translucent, deffractive media or strikes an opaque surface, bounces around, heads back to infinity. If you know where the light comes from, and you know about the obstacles it passes around and through, you can predict where it goes. And you can compare that with where it might have gone had things been different. Technically, things play out something like this. You can describe the action by a wave equation. It’s a pretty important thing that they all boil down to something like this:

Classical Waves-Mortal Scattering

A Foundation for the Unification of Classical Wave Theory

The “scattering effects” during transmission are characterized by the coefficients, E, Aj, B. “u” represents the state of the wave at a given point in space-time. u came from t = – ∞, and is heading off to t = ∞. Naturally, things are much simpler if the scattering effects are absent. Things proceed in a perfectly straight line, unimpeded, unscattered, unfractured, unbroken, from the infinite past to the infinite future.


Whatever Mormon protology you subscribe to, life comes from infinity, passes through the awfulness and happiness, the pain and joy, the stunning paradox and beautiful reason, the turgid heat, wonderful selflessness, or drastic disappointment of love, in other words, the scenery of mortality, and becomes scattered, fractured, broken, saddened, impeded. It may make a Jesus, a Scrooge, or worse, in traditional views, a Marley. It leaves, and heads off into infinity.


In scattering theory, important tools are the Wave Operators. The wave operators, W±, tell us how two states, one passing through a given family of “perturbations” during its journey, the other passing through different perturbations, are related at ± “infinity.” Imagine the existence of “spiritual” wave operators: they tell how a life that passed through one set of experiences, one set of decisions, one set of opportunities, is related to another that passed through a different set of experiences, a different set of decisions, a different set of opportunities. In Dickens’s tale, Three Spirits made the difference for Scrooge. Would they have made the difference for Marley?

H1 is "your" Hamiltonian, H2 is min. The Ws may take one trajectory and transform it to another.

H1 is “your” Hamiltonian, H2 is mine. The Ws may take one life trajectory and transform it to another. I’m Scrooge. Want to be saved? Don’t bother shaking hands.

Christmas Trees–A Story

One of my early Christmas memories is about collecting the Christmas Tree. Sometimes we purchased from a tree lot, but usually we could not afford to buy a tree that matched the family expectation. At the time, there was little in the way of regulation in cutting your own tree, as long as you stayed off Government Land. Abandoned mining properties were often surrounded by woods. No one cared whether you cut a junior-sized spruce tree. One Saturday, after my usual badgering of parents, “when are we going to get the tree?” my father announced he was heading for the hills in his very old straight-six-no-synchromesh Chevy pickup to find a tree. My mother produced a thermos of hot chocolate and some fake oreos (Hydrox. Anyone remember those?), we suited up and headed to the southwest. At the terminal end of our journey, long after civilized space, the lonely highway was suffering encroachment by drifting snow. It was rather what I imagine abandoned black-top in a desert must look like, sand blowing across the road, creating a kind of gentle bumpiness. Only in our case, it was snow—ephemeral powder blowing across hardened-by-cold asphalt.

I had seen no traffic for at least 30 minutes when we slowed and pulled onto a snow-covered gravel road. Though I was only eight or nine years old, I knew this was tricky. No four wheel drive for us. But my dad kept us on the the raised track for five hundred yards or so and stopped. I understand his logic now. The road was passing through a flat stretch where a U-turn was possible. We zippered up, gloved up, he grabbed the small bow saw and out we went into the sub-zero breeze.

Candidates were few and far between, but finally we located an appropriately sized tree. My dad had suggested maybe taking the easy way out and cutting a six-foot cedar. These were a dime-a-dozen there. But I reminded him what mom had said the last time he tried that. It’s always unpleasant when one parent berates the other, even if it’s only mild. You feel like you’re on the receiving end most of the time. Time for a little hot chocolate before the final effort. We tracked back to the now cold truck cab and cranked over for some heat. Broke out the cups and snacked. Dad always liked “Cummings Chocolates” and could be counted on for a steady supply. I disliked milk chocolate, but that was his thing. I scarfed the fake oreos. No deep conversation here. All too soon we were back at the doomed tree. I took first crack, because, kid. Gave up around a quarter of the way through. We dragged the poor thing back and put it in the truck bed, made our turn and backtracked to the highway. Although the snow was still falling, a plow had cleared the return journey.

Dad is gone now. We haven’t cut our own tree in decades. Except last year we cut a spruce at a tree farm. What a horror. The needles on that thing were like steel daggers. Check that off the list.

I’ve wondered how things like this have affected my life journey. Scattering effects. Is there a butterfly effect here? Maybe. But Christians, and I count myself one, believe in a kind of “Jesus” operator, to quantify the holy if you will. Let’s call it “J.” J subsumes the act of being Christ. We might say that by the J operator, God sees (wave operators) the life of Jesus in us, in the end somehow. Think of “H” as my life Hamiltonian and “u” is my state, whereas “Ho” is the Jesus Hamiltonian and “v” is the end state of Jesus. Then J might work like this:
v = lim t -> ∞eitH1Je-itHou. God, after all, sees Jesus when he looks at me. Perhaps Grace works like this, or Charity, or Atonement. This is the spiritual wave operator. I pray it is so. Happy Easter.

Part II may show up next Christmas, if you’re good.


  1. J. Stapley says:

    Awesome. And I hope so too.

    Perhaps oddly, Hydrox cookies were the original. Oreos were the fake version.

  2. hehe. Hydrox lost the cookie wars.

  3. Leave it to Stapley to sort the crucial matters of historical fact.

    Turning your mathematical mindset to theology is beautiful. I love watching you think.

  4. D'Alembert says:

    A few questions….

    1. Your D’Alembertian appears to be the flat space version. Will you generalize to the covariant version for Christmas?
    2. Light comes from infinity. Timeline, space like, or null infinity?
    3. In a finite universe are the asymptotic states t = – inf, and t = inf justified?
    4. Haag’s Theorem?
    5. Oreos. Double stuffed?

  5. Haha. Who needs covariant. Not me. Don’t try relativity on me. Universe is flat, man! No oreos. Hydrox had no doublestuff option then, but of course neither did Oreo.

  6. We had Christmas Tree expeditions much like yours, though a mustard Ford Courier passed down from Grandpa was the vehicle of choice.

  7. At what speed do prayers propagate?

  8. Kristine says:

    This is exquisite, WVS. Thank you.

  9. Wonderful. I start out viewing it as a metaphor, then wonder whether life is best described as a wave for real. But then I try to fit a gravitational lens into the model . . . and call a halt to simply enjoy.

  10. I can barely keep up with you, WVS, but I love all the stuff you write. Thanks.

  11. FGH, nothing goes faster than light. (grin)
    Thanks Hunter, christiankimball. Very kind, Kristine. Peterllc, brothers.

  12. D'Alembert says:
  13. All we need now is the physical experimentation that can confirm all this hypothesis…

  14. Let z be a metric space on R and F a mapping from the space of all-BCC-posts_n to z_n, where F is a post’s greatness. This := Lim Sup z_n, n => (rotate CW 90^o) 8 .

  15. Ha ha when you get in a hurry . . . should be ‘F(This)’ above, not just ‘This.’

  16. Thanks, Steve. (grin)