We receive no information about the universe smaller than a photon.
This is not a subject upon which I can deliver a professorial lecture with a closed mind. Nobody can talk about atoms with a closed mind. So I won't. I will doodle:
But here's the enigma: we are what we are --omnivores who eat plants and animals that eat plants-- and see what we see because of photons, photons in the visible light part of the spectrum. What about when we're asleep and our eyes are closed? Visible light can barely get through a piece of paper, much less closed eyelids. What are we seeing when we dream of light? When we dream of anything, it is as though we see it in light. Is dreamed light light, and if not, what? Observe doodle:
They induce an electromagnetic charge which, like all charges, is surrounded by virtual photons. These are photons that exist for a short time after virtualization, unreality. Your brain responds by navigating the images they create, and that is your dream self --accommodating the disturbed verges of reality. Is it real? I can only quote Mr. Spock from Star Trek [season3, episode6, "Spectre Of The Gun"]: "Physical reality is consistent with universal laws. Where the laws do not apply, there is no reality." This, of course, forces us into accountability even in the virtual photons of dreams*. Another enigma for another time, possibly when I am awake.
*Click for further discussion on the OK corral on prior post.