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John Lindop asked the Naked Scientists: There is constant reference to matter distorting space / time, the words are correct but in the wrong order as Schrodinger, Gifford and the ancient Greek philosophers et al all note that matter IS a distortion of space / time ??What do you think?
Matter represents a distortion of the universe's gravitational field; strong in the vicinity of the matter particles, but weaker further away.Accelerating masses produce distortions in the universe's gravitational field that propagate away from the accelerating masses, at the speed of light.
According to the Standard Model of particle physics, particles are excitations of their corresponding quantum fields, which permeate all space. But bear in mind that this is a a model - an astonishingly accurate model, in terms of what it predicts we'll observe - but it doesn't necessarily tell us what reality actually is; it tells us that it behaves as if it consists of these fields and their excitations.
Maybe this will amaze you, but it's not a task of physics to establish "what reality actually is", it's a task of religion (or phylosophy maybe).In physics there is no reality, there are no truths.There are only theories and models.