This paper connects the hard problem of consciousness to the interpretation of quantum mechanics. It shows that constitutive Russellian pan(proto)psychism (CRP) is compatible with Everett’s relative-state (RS) interpretation. Despite targeting different problems, CRP and RS are related, for they both establish symmetry between micro- and macrosystems, and both call for a deflationary account of Subject. The paper starts from formal arguments that demonstrate the incompatibility of CRP with alternative interpretations of quantum mechanics, followed by showing that RS entails Russellian pan(proto)psychism. (...) Therefore, CRP and RS are mutually supportive. It then provides a unified ontological picture by combining CRP and RS. The challenge faced by CRP, the combination problem, can be resolved by adopting a RS version of quantum mechanics. Technically, this is achieved by a co-consciousness relation capable of explaining the difference between first-person and third-person perspectives. The hierarchical structure of the relation removes any concern on the structural mismatch between the physical and the phenomenal. (shrink)
I show in this paper why the universality of quantum mechanics at all scales, which implies the possibility of Schrodinger's Cat and Wigner's Friend thought experiments, cannot be experimentally confirmed, and why macroscopic superpositions in general cannot be observed or measured, even in principle. Through the relativity of quantum superposition and the transitivity of correlation, it is shown that from the perspective of an object that is in quantum superposition relative to a macroscopic measuring device and observer, the observer is (...) already sufficiently well correlated to the measuring device that once the object correlates to the measuring device, there is no time period in which the observer can perform an appropriate interference experiment to show that the measuring device is in a superposition. (shrink)
The assertion by Yu and Nikolic that the delayed choice quantum eraser experiment of Kim et al. empirically falsifies the consciousness-causes-collapse hypothesis of quantum mechanics is based on the unfounded and false assumption that the failure of a quantum wave function to collapse implies the appearance of a visible interference pattern.
Обсуждается широкий круг проблем взаимоотношения сознания и материи. Особое внимание уделено анализу структуры и свойств сознания в рамках информационной эволюции. А также – анализу роли специфических (невычислительных) свойств сознания в процедуре классических и квантовых измерений. В частности, подробно обсуждается вопрос о «клонировании» сознания (возможности копирования его свойств его на новый материальный носитель). Мы надеемся, что сформулированный нами обобщенный принцип дополнительности откроет новые пути для исследования проблем сознания в рамках фундаментальной физической картины мира.
A wide range of problems of the relationship between consciousness and matter are discussed. Particular attention is paid to the analysis of the structure and properties of consciousness in the framework of information evolution. The role of specific (non-computational) properties of consciousness in the procedure of classical and quantum measurements is analyzed. In particular, the issue of "cloning" of consciousness (the possibility of copying its properties onto a new material carrier) is discussed in detail. We hope that the generalized principle (...) of complementarity formulated by us will open up new ways for studying the problems of consciousness within the framework of the fundamental physical picture of the world. (shrink)
This paper proposes an interpretation of time that is an 'A-theory' in that it incorporates both McTaggart's A-series and his B-series. The A-series characteristics are supposed to be 'ontologically private' analogous to qualia in the problem of other minds and is given a definition. The main idea is that the experimenter and the cat do not share the same A-series characteristics, e.g the same 'now'. So there is no single time at which the cat gets ascribed different states. It is (...) proposed one may define a 'unit of becoming' that coordinatizes the future/present/past 'private' spectrum as well as allowing one to calculate the rates of becoming. Relativity is briefly considered. (shrink)
This paper proposes an interpretation of time that is an 'A-theory' in that it incorporates both McTaggart's A-series and his B-series. The A-series characteristics are supposed to be 'ontologically private' analogous to qualia in the Inverted Spectrum thought experiment and is given a definition. It is proposed one may define a 'unit of becoming' that coordinatizes the future/present/past spectrum as well as allowing one to calculate the rates of becoming. We give a picture of this interpretation and discuss how it (...) relates to the Schrodinger's Cat paradox. (shrink)
Doing justice to quantum mechanics calls for a deeper examination of the relations between our experience, its objects, and its subjects than either third-person interpretations or the first-person singular interpretation of the QBist permit. The metaphysical space opened by Bohr's employment of the "Kantian wedge" between the objective world, about which we can communicate, and the world "in itself" allows quantum mechanics to unfold its metaphysical potential. This in turn makes it possible to go a long way towards bridging the (...) epistemological gap between the empirical and transcendental conceptions of reality. (shrink)
Gravity remains the most elusive field. Its relationship with the electromagnetic field is poorly understood. Relativity and quantum mechanics describe the aforementioned fields, respectively. Bosons and fermions are often credited with responsibility for the interactions of force and matter. It is shown here that fermions factually determine the gravitational structure of the universe, while bosons are responsible for the three established and described forces. Underlying the relationships of the gravitational and electromagnetic fields is a symmetrical probability distribution of fermions and (...) bosons. Werner Heisenberg's assertion that the Schr\'f6dinger wave function and Heisenberg matrices do not describe one thing is confirmed. It is asserted that the conscious observation of Schr\'f6dinger's wave function never causes its collapse, but invariably produces the classical space described by the Heisenberg picture. As a result, the Heisenberg picture can be explained and substantiated only in terms of conscious observation of the Schr\'f6dinger wave function. Schr\'f6dinger\'92s picture is defined as information space, while Heisenberg\'92s picture is defined as classical space. B-theory postulates that although the Schr\'f6dinger picture and the Heisenberg picture are mathematically connected, the former is eternal while the latter is discrete, existing only as the sequence of discrete conscious moments. Inferences related to information-based congruence between physical and mental phenomena have long been discussed in the literature. Moreover, John Wheeler suggested that information is fundamental to the physics of the universe. However, there is a great deal of uncertainty about how the physical and the mental complement each other. Bishop Berkeley and Ernst Mach, to name two who have addressed the subject, simply reject the concept of the material world altogether. Professor Hardy defined physical reality as 'dubious and elusive'. It is proposed in this paper that physical reality, or physical instantiation in the classical space as described by Heisenberg picture is one thing with the consciousness. (shrink)
This paper seeks to extend my recent work on quantum perception (Rosen, 2021) to the phenomenon of quantum entanglement. In the first section, I summarize the earlier work, noting how the conventional approach to observing photons is rooted in an objectivist philosophy that serves as an obstacle to probing the underlying quantum reality. In the summary provided, I bring out the intimate relationship between observer and observed in the quantum world, and the need for a new, proprioceptive mode of observation (...) linked to phenomenological philosophy. The next part of the present paper builds on the earlier effort by applying the proprioceptive observation of photons to the phenomenon of entanglement. The basic proposition is that proprioceptive observers of entangled photons may become entangled with each other. I propose an experiment that tests this hypothesis. In concluding, I explore the possibility that a quantum internet of proprioceptively engaged participants could create an ontologically entangled society. (shrink)
We may suspect that quantum mechanics and consciousness are related, but the details are not at all clear. In this paper, I suggest how the mind and brain might fit together intimately while still maintaining distinct identities. The connection is based on the correspondence of similar functions in both the mind and the quantum-mechanical brain. Accompanying material for a talk at The Second Mind and Brain Symposium held at the Institute of Psychiatry, Denmark Hill, London on 20th October, 1990.
I argue that our direct experience and some physical facts do not go well with an understanding of perception as a mechanism producing a representation of a ''truly'' outer world. Instead, it is much more coherent to treat what is traditionally considered an image in this context as a closed structure equipped in its own ontology, replacing the ''truly'' outer one from the point of view of an agent possessing it. In such a framework, the notion of existence is taken (...) to be defined by consciousness in a way similar to qualia, making it subjective on the one hand, and reducing it to a tool on the other. This implies, in turn, that we need a form of mind-brain dualism; the best we can do in such circumstances about explaining consciousness as an epistemic device - a role intuitively imposing itself in a variety of situations - is to embed it in an abstract ontology merely serving the purpose of a ''true'' reality with the help of the mind-brain link. Obviously, the approach favors subjectivity as a foundation in the ontological sense. Objectivity is considered here only as a suitably understood product from an ''observer's'' point of view, although a functional and useful one. The paper is addressed to readers with interest in both the mind-body problem and ontological foundations of present-day physics, specifically quantum theory. The main conclusion can be absorbed without the quantum part, although it is a bit less convincing then. (shrink)
Science is basically about correlations between conscious human experiences: that is what makes it both useful and testable in the realm of our expanding human knowledge. Explicit recognition of this understanding lies at the core of the formulation of quantum theory that was originally developed during the twenties by its founders.
Does consciousness collapse the quantum wave function? This idea was taken seriously by John von Neumann and Eugene Wigner but is now widely dismissed. We develop the idea by combining a mathematical theory of consciousness (integrated information theory) with an account of quantum collapse dynamics (continuous spontaneous localization). Simple versions of the theory are falsified by the quantum Zeno effect, but more complex versions remain compatible with empirical evidence. In principle, versions of the theory can be tested by experiments with (...) quantum computers. The upshot is not that consciousness-collapse interpretations are clearly correct, but that there is a research program here worth exploring. (shrink)
A familiar interpretation of quantum mechanics (one of a number of views sometimes labeled the "Copenhagen interpretation'"), takes its empirical apparatus at face value, holding that the quantum wave function evolves by the Schrödinger equation except on certain occasions of measurement, when it collapses into a new state according to the Born rule. This interpretation is widely rejected, primarily because it faces the measurement problem: "measurement" is too imprecise for use in a fundamental physical theory. We argue that this is (...) a weak objection, as there may be many ways of making "measurement" precise. However, measurement-collapse interpretations face a more serious objection: a dilemma tied to the quantum Zeno effect. Is measurement itself an observable that can enter superpositions? If yes, then the standard measurement-collapse dynamics is ill-defined. If no, then (at least if measurement is an observable), measurements can never start or finish. The best way out is to deny that measurement is an observable, but this leads to strong and revisionary consequences. This reinforces the view that there is no nonrevisionary interpretation of quantum mechanics. (shrink)
The evolution of the human mind through natural selection mandates that our conscious experiences are causally potent in order to leave a tangible impact upon the surrounding physical world. Any attempt to construct a functional theory of the conscious mind within the framework of classical physics, however, inevitably leads to causally impotent conscious experiences in direct contradiction to evolution theory. Here, we derive several rigorous theorems that identify the origin of the latter impasse in the mathematical properties of ordinary differential (...) equations employed in combination with the alleged functional production of the mind by the brain. Then, we demonstrate that a mind--brain theory consistent with causally potent conscious experiences is provided by modern quantum physics, in which the unobservable conscious mind is reductively identified with the quantum state of the brain and the observable brain is constructed by the physical measurement of quantum brain observables. The resulting quantum stochastic dynamics obtained from sequential quantum measurements of the brain is governed by stochastic differential equations, which permit genuine free will exercised through sequential conscious choices of future courses of action. Thus, quantum reductionism provides a solid theoretical foundation for the causal potency of consciousness, free will and cultural transmission. (shrink)
In  it is claimed that, based on radiation emission measurements described in , a certain “variant” of the Orch OR theory has been refuted. I agree with this claim. However, the significance of this result for Orch OR per se is unclear. After all, the refuted “variant” was never advocated by anyone, and it contradicts the views of Hameroff and Penrose (hereafter: HP) who invented Orch OR . My aim is to get clear on this situation. I argue that (...) it is indeed reasonable to speak of “variants” here. Orch OR is not a complete model of reality but a work in progress. At its core, it claims that wavefunction collapse is a real physical event that has something to do with gravity (“OR”) and that consciousness depends on orchestrated collapses in microtubules (“Orch”). There are many ways one could make these base ideas precise hence many “variants”. Furthermore, the ways that HP aim to make these ideas precise are radical and incomplete. If they don’t work out, Orch OR will need to fall back on another variant. Thus, I believe the significance of [1-2] for Orch OR is that it cuts out a small class of possible variants and leaves behind questions and challenges for the rest, including the variant preferred by HP. (shrink)
Traditionally, being a realist about something means believing in the independent existence of that something. In this line of thought, a scientific realist is someone who believes in the objective existence of the entities postulated by our best scientific theories. In metaphysical terms, what does that mean? In ontological terms, i.e., in terms of what exists, scientific realism can be understood as involving the adoption of a scientifically informed ontology. But according to some philosophers, a realistic attitude must go beyond (...) ontology. The way in which this requirement has been understood involves providing a metaphysics for the entities postulated by science, that is, answering questions about the nature of what ontology admits to exist. We discuss how two fashionable approaches face the challenge of providing a metaphysics for science: a form of naturalism and the Viking/Toolbox approach. Finally, we present a third way, which adopts the best of both approaches: the meta-Popperian method, which focuses on discarding the wrong alternatives, or better saying, the metaphysical profiles incompatible with certain theories. We present the meta-Popperian method, a metametaphysical method capable of objectively assessing which metaphysical profiles are incompatible with certain scientific theories. For this, we will use quantum mechanics as a case study, presenting some previously obtained results. As our focus is on methodological questions about the relationship between metaphysics and science; with this method, we can see how science can be used to avoid error in metaphysical issues. In our opinion, this would be a way to develop a productive relationship between science and metaphysics. (shrink)
We re-examine the long-held postulate that there are two modes of thought, and develop a more fine-grained analysis of how different modes of thought affect conceptual change. We suggest that cognitive development entails the fine-tuning of three dimensions of thought: abstractness, divergence, and context-specificity. Using a quantum cognition modeling approach, we show how these three variables differ, and explain why they would have a distinctively different impacts on thought processes and mental contents. We suggest that, through simultaneous manipulation of all (...) three variables, one spontaneously, and on an ongoing basis, tailors one's mode of thought to the demands of the current situation. The paper concludes with an analysis based on results from an earlier study of children's mental models of the shape of the Earth. The example illustrates how, through reiterated transition between mental states using these three variables, thought processes unfold, and conceptual change ensues. While this example concerns children, the approach applies more broadly to adults as well as children. (shrink)
Quantum mechanics is a groundbreaking theory: not only it is extraordinarily empirically adequate but also it is claimed to having shattered the classical paradigm of understanding the observer-observed distinction as well as the part-whole relation. This, together with other quantum features, has been taken to suggest that quantum theory can help us understand the mind-body relation in a unique way, in particular to solve the hard problem of consciousness along the lines of panpsychism. In this paper, after having briefly presented (...) panpsychism, I discuss the main features of quantum theories and the way in which the main quantum theories of consciousness use them to account for conscious experience. (shrink)
In a recent no-go theorem [Bong et al., Nature Physics (2020)], we proved that the predictions of unitary quantum mechanics for an extended Wigner’s friend scenario are incompatible with any theory satisfying three metaphysical assumptions, the conjunction of which we call “Local Friendliness”: Absoluteness of Observed Events, Locality and No-Superdeterminism. In this paper (based on an invited talk for the QBism jubilee at the 2019 Växjö conference) I discuss the implications of this theorem for QBism, as seen from the point (...) of view of experimental metaphysics. I argue that the key distinction between QBism and realist interpretations of quantum mechanics is best understood in terms of their adherence to different theories of truth: the pragmatist versus the correspondence theories. I argue that a productive pathway to resolve the measurement problem within a pragmatist view involves taking seriously the perspective of quantum betting agents, even those in what I call a “Wigner bubble”. The notion of reality afforded by QBism, I propose, will correspond to the invariant elements of any theory that has pragmatic value to all rational agents—that is, the elements that are invariant upon changes of agent perspectives. The classical notion of ‘event’ is not among those invariants, even when those events are observed by some agent. Neither are quantum states. Nevertheless, I argue that far from solipsism, a personalist view of quantum states is an expression of its precise opposite: Copernicanism. (shrink)
Many non-physicalists, including Chalmers, hold that the zombie argument succeeds in rejecting the physicalist view of consciousness. Some non-physicalists, including, again, Chalmers, hold that quantum collapse interactionism, i.e., the idea that non-physical consciousness causes collapse of the wave function in phenomena such as quantum measurement, is a viable interactionist solution for the problem of the relationship between the physical world and the non-physical consciousness. In this paper, I argue that if QCI is true, the zombie argument fails. In particular, I (...) show that if QCI is true, a zombie world physically identical to our world is impossible because there is at least one law of nature, a fundamental law of physics in particular, that exist only in the zombie world but not in our world. This shows that philosophers like Chalmers are committing an error in endorsing the zombie argument and QCI at the same time. (shrink)
This paper takes as its point of departure recent research into the possibility that human beings can perceive single photons. In order to appreciate what quantum perception may entail, we first explore several of the leading interpretations of quantum mechanics, then consider an alternative view based on the ontological phenomenology of Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Martin Heidegger. Next, the philosophical analysis is brought into sharper focus by employing a perceptual model, the Necker cube, augmented by the topology of the Klein bottle. (...) This paves the way for addressing in greater depth the paper’s central question: Just what would it take to observe the quantum reality of the photon? In formulating an answer, we examine the nature of scientific objectivity itself, along with the paradoxical properties of light. The conclusion reached is that quantum perception requires a new kind of observation, one in which the observer of the photon adopts a concretely self-reflexive observational posture that brings her into close ontological relationship with the observed. (shrink)
Panpsychism has many sides in common with Jung and Pauli's thinking, and analytical psychology is also a form of panpsychism. In this article we want to lay the foundations for a psychophysics that has an adequate onto-epistemology for the complex phenomenology of the relationship between quantum physics and consciousness. This onto-epistemology is a monism in which an informational-spiritual atemporal dimension, completely entangled in itself and teleologically anthropic, precedes and “informs” instantaneously and constantly matter-energy, space-time and consciousness.
An atom is characterized mathematically as an evolving superposition of possible values of properties and experimentally as an instantaneous phenomenon with a precise value of a measured property. Likewise, an organism is to itself a flux of experience and to an observer a tangible body in a distinct moment. Whereas the implicit atom is the stream of computation represented by the smoothly propagating wave function, the implicit organism is both the species from which the body individuates and the personal mind (...) its behavior explicates. As with the wave computation that underlies the atom, the substance of the implicit organism is not matter but information. And like projection from a superposition of potential values to a single outcome in a precise and fleeting moment, the organism actualizes only one of the many possible behaviors calculated in the ongoing presence we know as consciousness. (shrink)
Ever since the early days of quantum mechanics it has been suggested that consciousness could be linked to the collapse of the wave function. However, no detailed account of such an interplay is usually provided. In this paper we present an objective collapse model where the collapse operator depends on integrated information, which has been argued to measure consciousness. By doing so, we construct an empirically adequate scheme in which superpositions of conscious states are dynamically suppressed. Unlike other proposals in (...) which “consciousness causes the collapse of the wave function,” our model is fully consistent with a materialistic view of the world and does not require the postulation of entities suspicious of laying outside of the quantum realm. (shrink)
If the concept of “free will” is reduced to that of “choice” all physical world share the latter quality. Anyway the “free will” can be distinguished from the “choice”: The “free will” involves implicitly certain preliminary goal, and the choice is only the mean, by which it can be achieved or not by the one who determines the goal. Thus, for example, an electron has always a choice but not free will unlike a human possessing both. Consequently, and paradoxically, the (...) determinism of classical physics is more subjective and more anthropomorphic than the indeterminism of quantum mechanics for the former presupposes certain deterministic goal implicitly following the model of human freewill behavior. The choice is usually linked to very complicated systems such as human brain or society and even often associated with consciousness. In its background, the material world is deterministic and absolutely devoid of choice. However, quantum mechanics introduces the choice in the fundament of physical world, in the only way, in which it can exist: All exists in the “phase transition” of the present between the uncertain future and the well-ordered past. Thus the present is forced to choose in order to be able to transform the coherent state of future into the well-ordering of past. The concept of choice as if suggests that there is one who chooses. However quantum mechanics involves a generalized case of choice, which can be called “subjectless”: There is certain choice, which originates from the transition of the future into the past. Thus that kind of choice is shared of all existing and does not need any subject: It can be considered as a low of nature. There are a few theorems in quantum mechanics directly relevant to the topic: two of them are called “free will theorems” by their authors, Conway and Kochen, and according to them: “Do we really have free will, or, as a few determined folk maintain, is it all an illusion? We don’t know, but will prove in this paper that if indeed there exist any experimenters with a modicum of free will, then elementary particles must have their own share of this valuable commodity” “The import of the free will theorem is that it is not only current quantum theory, but the world itself that is non-deterministic, so that no future theory can return us to a clockwork universe”. Those theorems can be considered as a continuation of the so-called theorems about the absence of “hidden variables” in quantum mechanics. (shrink)
Immanuel Kant famously thought that the presuppositions of Newtonian physics are the necessary conditions of the possibility of experience in general – both “outer” and “inner” experience. Today we know, of course, that Newtonian physics only applies to a limited domain of physical reality and is radically inadequate in the quantum and relativistic domains. This gives rise to an interesting question: could the radical changes in physics suggest new conditions for the possibility of experience? In other words, does post-Newtonian physics (...) suggest a post-Kantian view of human experience? (shrink)
We discuss the ‘Consciousness Causes Collapse Hypothesis’ (CCCH), the interpretation of quantum mechanics according to which consciousness solves the measurement problem. At first, it seems that the very hypothesis that consciousness causally acts over matter counts as a reductio of CCCH. However, CCCH won’t go so easily. In this paper we attempt to bring new light to the discussion. We distinguish the ontology of the interpretation (the positing of a causally efficacious consciousness as part of the furniture of reality) from (...) metaphysics (the metaphysical character of that consciousness). That distinction allows us to map the philosophical theories of consciousness compatible with quantum mechanics under the tenets of CCCH. Also, it indicates that the problem will have to be discussed at a metaphysical level rather than at the physical level. Our analysis corroborates recent arguments to the effect that this interpretation is not ruled out so easily. (shrink)
A recent no-go theorem (Frauchiger and Renner in Nat Commun 9(1):3711, 2018) establishes a contradiction from a speciﬁc application of quantum theory to a multi- agent setting. The proof of this theorem relies heavily on notions such as ‘knows’ or ‘is certain that’. This has stimulated an analysis of the theorem by Nurgalieva and del Rio (in: Selinger P, Chiribella G (eds) Proceedings of the 15th international conference on quantum physics and logic (QPL 2018). EPTCS 287, Open Publishing Association, Waterloo, (...) 2018), in which they claim that it shows the “[i]nadequacy of modal logic in quantum settings” (ibid.). In this paper, we will offer a signiﬁcantly extended and reﬁned reconstruction of the theorem in multi-agent modal logic. We will then show that a thorough reconstruction of the proof as given by Frauchiger and Renner requires the reﬂexivity of access relations (system T). However, a stronger theorem is possible that already follows in serial frames, and hence also holds in systems of doxastic logic (such as KD45). After proving this, we will discuss the general implications for different interpretations of quantum probabilities as well as several options for dealing with the result. (shrink)
This edited volume examines aspects of the mind/consciousness that are relevant to the interpretations of quantum mechanics. In it, an international group of contributors focus on the possible connections between quantum mechanics and consciousness. They look at how consciousness can help us with quantum mechanics as well as how quantum mechanics can contribute to our understanding of consciousness. For example, what do different interpretations aimed at solving the measurement problem in quantum mechanics tell us about the nature of consciousness, such (...) as von Neumann's interpretation? Each interpretation has, associated to it, a corresponding metaphysical framework that helps us think about possible “models” of consciousness. Alternatively, what does the nature of consciousness tell us about the role of the observer and time reversibility in the measurement process? The book features 20 papers on contemporary approaches to quanta and mind. It brings together the work of scholars from different disciplines with diverse views on the connections between quanta and mind, ranging from those who are supportive of a link between consciousness and quantum physics to those who are very skeptical of such link. Coverage includes such topics as free will in a quantum world, contextuality and causality, mind and matter interaction, quantum panpsychism, the quantum and quantum-like brain, and the role of time in brain-mind dynamics. (shrink)
This thesis articulates an analytic version of the ontology of idealism, according to which universal phenomenal consciousness is all there ultimately is, everything else in nature being reducible to patterns of excitation of this consciousness. The thesis’ key challenge is to explain how the seemingly distinct conscious inner lives of different subjects—such as you and me—can arise within this fundamentally unitary phenomenal field. Along the way, a variety of other challenges are addressed, such as: how we can reconcile idealism with (...) the fact that we all inhabit a common external world; why this world unfolds independently of our personal volition or imagination; why there are such tight correlations between measured patterns of brain activity and reports of experience; etc. The core idea of this thesis can be summarized thus: we, as well as all other living organisms, are dissociated alters of universal phenomenal consciousness, analogously to how a person with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) manifests multiple disjoint centers of subjectivity also called ‘alters.’ We, and all other living organisms, are surrounded by the transpersonal phenomenal activity of universal consciousness, which unfolds beyond the dissociative boundary of our respective alter. The inanimate world we perceive around us is the extrinsic appearance—i.e. the phenomenal image imprinted from across our dissociative boundary—of this activity. The living organisms we share the world with are the extrinsic appearances of other alters. (shrink)
The Idea of the World offers a grounded alternative to the frenzy of unrestrained abstractions and unexamined assumptions in philosophy and science today. This book examines what can be learned about the nature of reality based on conceptual parsimony, straightforward logic and empirical evidence from fields as diverse as physics and neuroscience. It compiles an overarching case for idealism - the notion that reality is essentially mental - from ten original articles the author has previously published in leading academic journals. (...) The case begins with an exposition of the logical fallacies and internal contradictions of the reigning physicalist ontology and its popular alternatives, such as bottom-up panpsychism. It then advances a compelling formulation of idealism that elegantly makes sense of - and reconciles - classical and quantum worlds. The main objections to idealism are systematically refuted and empirical evidence is reviewed that corroborates the formulation presented here. The book closes with an analysis of the hidden psychological motivations behind mainstream physicalism and the implications of idealism for the way we relate to the world. (shrink)
The connection between quantum physics and the mind has been debated for almost a hundred years. There are several proposals as to how quantum effects might be relevant to understanding consciousness, including von Neumann’s Consciousness Causes Collapse interpretation (CCC), Penrose’s Orchestrated objective reduction (Orch OR), Atmanspacher quantum emergence theory, or Vitiello’s field theory. In this paper, we examine the CCC, in particular Stapp’s theory of interaction of mind and matter, and discuss how this imposes constraints to possible brain structures. We (...) then argue that those constraints may allow us to identify a possible locus of the interaction between mind and matter, if CCC is true. (shrink)
This paper briefly discusses some of David Bohm’s views on mind and matter and suggests that they allow for a stronger possibility for conscious free will to influence quantum dynamics than Henry Stapp’s approach.
Most interpretations of Quantum Mechanics alternative to Copenhagen interpretation try to avoid the dualistic flavor of the latter. One of the basic goals of the former is to avoid the ad hoc introduction of observers and observations as an inevitable presupposition of physics. Non-Copenhagen interpretations usually trust in decoherence as a necessary mechanism to obtain a well-defined, observer-free transition from a unitary quantum description of the universe to classicality. Even though decoherence does not solve the problem of the definite outcomes, (...) it helps to explain why we do not observe superpositions and, according to Zurek’s existential interpretation, why a specific preferred basis emerges through system–environment interactions. The aim of this paper is to show why such interpretation ends up begging the question and provides little progress in understanding the quantum-to-classical transition; the ultimate reason being that preferred bases always correlate to human observation. Benefitting from the technical discussion, some remarks will be offered in the last section regarding the role of classical observations as a necessary condition to make workable the formalism of Quantum Mechanics and scientific activity itself. (shrink)
Generally speaking, the existence of experience is accepted, but more challenging has been to say what experience is and how it occurs. Moreover, philosophers and scholars have been talking about mind and mental activity in connection with experience as opposed to physical processes. Yet, the fact is that quantum physics has replaced classical Newtonian physics in natural sciences, but the scholars in humanities and social sciences still operate under the obsolete Newtonian model. There is already a little research in which (...) mind and conscious experience are explained in terms of quantum theory. This article argues that experience is impossible to be both a physical and non-physical phenomenon. When discussing causality and identity as transcendental, quantum theory may imply the quantum physical nature of conscious experience, where a person associates causality to conscious experience, and, thus, the result is that the double-aspect theory and the mind/brain identity theory would be refuted. (shrink)
We view the mind-body problem in terms of the two interconnected problems of phenomenal consciousness and mental causation, namely, how subjective conscious experience can arise from physical neurological processes and how conscious mental states can causally act upon the physical world. In order to address these problems, I develop here a non-physicalist framework that combines two apparently antithetical views: the materialist view of the mind as a product of the brain and the metaphysical view of consciousness rooted in an underlying (...) hidden reality. I discuss how this framework resolves the problem of mental causation while being simultaneously consistent with fundamental physical principles. I will elucidate how the framework ties in to the perspective of 'meaning' that acts as the bridge between physical neurological processes and the conscious mind. Moreover, we will see how both our awareness of the self and our representation of the external world are connected to this perspective. (shrink)
Bu çalışma kitap olmayan bir kitaptır. Okur klasik kitaplarda alıştığı tamamlanmış metinler, çözümlenmiş bilimsel ve felsefi problemler beklemesin bu çalışmada. Sunduğum şey üzerinde çalıştığım konular ve o konularla ilgili geliştirdiğim düşünceler, aforizmalar yer yer dağınık önermelerdir. Bu iki nedenden dolayı böyledir: Birincisi bilgi kuramsal açıdan tamamlanmış önermeler dizgesinin yanlış olmasıdır. Quantum çağında her gün yeni bir keşif yaptığımız nesneler ile ilgili büyük anlatılar ve tamamlanmış, sistematik görüşler geliştirilemez. Geleneksel tüm kitaplar ilgilendikleri nesneyi tüm bağıntılarıyla çözdükleri iddiasındadır. Örneğin tüm çağdaş fizik (...) kitapları yaklaşık yüz yıldır atomun ağırlığını çözdüklerini düşünerek yayınlanıyordu. Ancak 2017 Ocağında quarkların dışarıdan enerji alışverişi yaptıkları ve oluşturdukları atom ağırlığının sürekli değişti keşfedildi. Bu tüm yazılmış fizik kitaplarının çöpe atılması anlamına gelir. Bu nedenlerden ötürü tamamlanmış çalışmalar değil, sürekli gelişen Wikipedia tarzında, yazılan metinlerin sürekli güncellendiği çalışmalar, bilimsel anlatıma daha uygundur. Okur, bu metnin sürekli işlenen biçimini bloğumda takip edebilecek. -/- İkincisi kişisel olarak çalışmalarımdan asla tatmin olamadım ve vardığım teorik sonuçları dışarı açarak çalışmalarıma dışsal bir motivasyon ve eleştirel bir geri dönüşüm almak istedim. O nedenle okur bu çalışmamı kendisiyle tartışmaya açtığım el yazmalarım olarak değerlendirsin. -/- Tüm bunlarla birlikte okuru son derece geniş bir entelektüel alanda yaratıcı bir çalışma ve tamamiyle sadece yazara ait yeni önermeler bekliyor. -/- Bu çalışma esas olarak aydınlanmadan başlayan ve günümüze kadar gelen, quantum fizikçilerinin de yaslandıkları, tüm sosyal kuramların sonunu ilan etmektedir. -/- Salt bu iddia bile çalışmamı dikkate değer kılar. (shrink)
In this paper we examine some proposals to disprove the hypothesis that the interaction between mind and matter causes the collapse of the wave function, showing that such proposals are fundamentally flawed. We then describe a general experimental setup retaining the key features of the ones examined, and show that even a more general case is inadequate to disprove the mind-matter collapse hypothesis. Finally, we use our setup provided to argue that, under some reasonable assumptions about consciousness, such hypothesis is (...) unfalsifiable. (shrink)
This book addresses the fascinating cross-disciplinary field of quantum information theory applied to the study of brain function. It offers a self-study guide to probe the problems of consciousness, including a concise but rigorous introduction to classical and quantum information theory, theoretical neuroscience, and philosophy of the mind. It aims to address long-standing problems related to consciousness within the framework of modern theoretical physics in a comprehensible manner that elucidates the nature of the mind-body relationship. The reader also gains an (...) overview of methods for constructing and testing quantum informational theories of consciousness. (shrink)
In 2005, an essay was published in Nature asserting that the universe is mental and that we must abandon our tendency to conceptualize observations as things. Since then, experiments have confirmed that — as predicted by quantum mechanics — reality is contextual, which contradicts at least intuitive formulations of realism and corroborates the hypothesis of a mental universe. Yet, to give this hypothesis a coherent rendering, one must explain how a mental universe can — at least in principle — accommodate (...) (a) our experience of ourselves as distinct individual minds sharing a world beyond the control of our volition; and (b) the empirical fact that this world is contextual despite being seemingly shared. By combining a modern formulation of the ontology of idealism with the relational interpretation of quantum mechanics, the present paper attempts to provide a viable explanatory framework for both points. In the process of doing so, the paper also addresses key philosophical qualms of the relational interpretation. (shrink)
Anthony Aguirre and Max Tegmark have famously speculated that the Level I Multiverse is the same as the Level III Multiverse. By this, they mean that the parallel universes of the Level III Multiverse can be regarded as similar or identical copies of our own Hubble volume distributed throughout the whole of our (possibly infinite) bubble universe. However, we show that our bubble universe is in a single quantum eigenstate that extends to regions of space that are receding from each (...) other at superluminal velocities because of general relativistic expansion. Such a bubble universe cannot accommodate Hubble volumes in the different orthogonal eigenstates required by the Level III Multiverse. Instead, quantum uncertainty arises from large numbers of alternative bubble universes in Hilbert space, isolated from each other. The conclusion of the paper is that the Level I Multiverse is not the same as the Level III Multiverse. (shrink)
Although the present paper looks upon the formal apparatus of quantum mechanics as a calculus of correlations, it goes beyond a purely operationalist interpretation. Having established the consistency of the correlations with the existence of their correlata, and having justified the distinction between a domain in which outcome-indicating events occur and a domain whose properties only exist if their existence is indicated by such events, it explains the difference between the two domains as essentially the difference between the manifested world (...) and its manifestation. A single, intrinsically undifferentiated Being manifests the macroworld by entering into reflexive spatial relations. This atemporal process implies a new kind of causality and sheds new light on the mysterious nonlocality of quantum mechanics. Unlike other realist interpretations, which proceed from an evolving-states formulation, the present interpretation proceeds from Feynman’s formulation of the theory, and it introduces a new interpretive principle, replacing the collapse postulate and the eigenvalue–eigenstate link of evolving-states formulations. Applied to alternatives involving distinctions between regions of space, this principle implies that the spatiotemporal differentiation of the physical world is incomplete. Applied to alternatives involving distinctions between things, it warrants the claim that, intrinsically, all fundamental particles are identical in the strong sense of numerical identical. They are the aforementioned intrinsically undifferentiated Being, which manifests the macroworld by entering into reflexive spatial relations. (shrink)
The limitations and unsuitability of the twentieth century intellectual marvel, the quantum mechanics for the task of unraveling working of human consciousness is critically analyzed. The inbuilt traits of the probabilistic, approximate and imprecise nature of quantum mechanical approach are brought out. -/- The limitations and the unsuitability of using such knowledge for the understanding of precise, correct, finite and definite happenings of activities relating to human consciousness and mind, which are not quantum in nature, are pointed out. -/- Analytical (...) methods interpreting philosophical and Indian spiritual analyses suiting the unraveling of working of human consciousness and mind over the deductive approach of quantum physics and advanced mathematics are highlighted. A model of human consciousness and mental functions is presented taking ideas from the Upanishads and related texts. -/- Comparisons with theological interpretations of Upanishadic insight are dealt with to have an idea of working of human consciousness and mind in relation to spirituality. (shrink)
David Bohm, in his "causal theory", made the correct Hegelian synthesis of Einstein's thesis that there is a "there" there, and Bohr's antithesis of "thinglessness" (Nick Herbert’s term). Einstein was a materialist and Bohr was an idealist. Bohm showed that quantum reality has both. This is “physical dualism” (my term). Physical dualism may be a low energy approximation to a deeper monism of cosmic consciousness called "the super-implicate order" (Bohm and Hiley’s term), “pregeometry” (Wheeler’s term), “substratum” (Dirac’s term), “funda-MENTAL space” (...) (Hameroff’s term), “Chi” (Chinese medicine & Falun Gong) etc., but for our immediate pragmatic purpose of constructing naturally conscious nano-computers and of virtually reverse engineering alleged reports of propellantless UFO propulsion (French Intelligence Report, 1999 [email protected] Vol. 5, No. 11, Part 1 -- August 1, 1999 & NIDS report "Best UFO Cases - Europe", I. Von Ludwiger) to the stars and beyond, physical dualism will work. (shrink)
Roger Penrose is known for his proposals, in collaboration with Stuart Hameroff, for quantum action in the brain. These proposals, which are still recent, have a prior, less known basis, which will be studied in the following work. First, the paper situates the framework from which a mathematical physicist like Penrose proposes to speak about consciousness. Then it shows how he understands the possible relationships between computation and consciousness and what criticism from other authors he endorses, to conclude by explaining (...) how he understands this relationship between consciousness and computation. Then, it focuses on the concept of non-locality so essential to his understanding of consciousness. With some examples, such as impossible objects or aperiodic tiling, the study addresses the concept of non-locality as Penrose understands it, and then shows how far he intends to arrive with that concept of non-locality. At all times the approach will be more philosophical than physical. (shrink)
To make educated guesses about what happens to consciousness upon bodily death, one has to have some understanding of the relationship between body and consciousness during life. This relationship, of course, reflects an ontology. In this brief essay, the tenability of both the physicalist and dualist ontologies will be assessed in view of recent experimental results in physics. The alternative ontology of idealism will then be discussed, which not only can be reconciled with the available empirical evidence, but also overcomes (...) the lack of parsimony and limited explanatory power of physicalism and dualism. Idealism elegantly explains the basic facts of reality, such as (a) the fact that brain activity correlates with experience, (b) the fact that we all seem to share the same world, and (c) the fact that we can’t change the laws of nature at will. If idealism is correct, the implication is that, instead of disappearing, conscious inner life expands upon bodily death, a prediction that finds circumstantial but significant confirmation in reports of near-death experiences and psychedelic trances, both of which can be construed as glimpses into the early stages of the death process. (shrink)