I was wondering if there exist a particle analogous to the Higgs boson that gives rise to energy, I´m sorry it´s not the big question but I feel confused about how the universe works, also I have been searching and I couldn't find anything

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    $\begingroup$ "I feel confused about how the universe works" Saint Adams postulated that if anyone ever figured the Universe out, it would collapse and a new, more complex one would arise in its place. Some scholars believe that this has already happened at least once. $\endgroup$ Aug 7, 2014 at 21:11
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    $\begingroup$ In quantum field theory, the quanta of a free (non-interacting) field have energy. If energy were due to an interaction with a field analogous to the Higgs field and mechanism, free field quanta would not have energy. $\endgroup$ Aug 7, 2014 at 22:57

2 Answers 2


The Higgs gives mass to other fields because it couples to them, producing terms in the QFT Lagrangian that look like what you ordinarily would call a mass term, without us having ever to write down an explicit mass term. Thus, the Higgs "gives rise" to the field/particle species property "mass", since it allows us to get massive theories without having to put in these arbitrary constants we call "masses" and since it produces mass terms for the gauge bosons $W$ and $Z^\pm$, which are ordinarily protected by gauge symmetry from having masses. (It shifts the constants to be explained then to the values of the coupling strengths, instead, which is not intrinstically better, but cleaner since then there are only coupling strengths in the Lagrangian that have to be determined, instead of the unnatural division into "coupling strengths" and "mass")

But there are no "energy terms" in the Lagrangian. Energy is not a fundamental property of a field/particle species, you can produce excitations (particles) with arbitrary energy. When you ask whether there is a field that "gives rise" to energy, that question makes, on a basic level, no sense. There is no property of fields called energy, it is not something that would be unique to a field/particle species, thus nothing giving rise to it is needed.


As far as we know, there is no particle (or field) that gives rise to energy in a way analogous to the Higgs mechanism.

Energy is a conserved quantity - there is a symmetry associated with it. Now mass is equivalent to energy, as per Einstein's equation $E=mc^2$, but not all particles have (rest) mass. On the other hand, every particle has some energy (photons have energy $E=h\nu$ and they are massless, electrons have rest energy and they are massive). The Higgs mechanism is what gives mass to some particles (like electrons), but the mass is just a manifestation of energy.

If a particle is massive (it has rest mass) it basically means that it can move slower than the speed of light. Nothing more, nothing less. If a particle moves slower than $c$, we can boost to a reference frame where the particle is stationary. For massless particles this is not possible. The Higgs field allows (some) particles to move slower than the speed of light and that's why we say it gives rise to mass (of some particles).

Please notice that mass is just a manifestation of energy. So if you want energy to rise in similar manner, there should be "something" underlying energy, which mafifests itself sometimes as energy. We don't know about anything behind energy, other than the Noether's theorem, which is in no way like the Higgs mechanism.

  • $\begingroup$ I'm not sure that, from a quantum field theory viewpoint, mass is a manifestation of energy is really the right statement (though it's not strictly wrong either). The mass of a particle is the pole of a propagator - or a coefficent of the "kinetic term" in the Lagrangian. $\endgroup$
    – ACuriousMind
    Aug 8, 2014 at 0:25

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