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See also: [L/D] [S/D] See also: [af/art3/pkda2001 - pizoig gaming projects] Ab Fr \ / +----------------+ /| /| / | / | / | / | Fu / | / | \ / | / | +----------------+--Hu | | | "RS-3" | | [Quick Index] | Jz--+----------|-----+ | / | / \ | / | / Sc | / | / | / | / |/ |/ +----------------+ / \ Sp Ar "Reality Structure 3" (mark II) This iconosphere owes much of its existence to Phillip Glass:Symp #3 & #2. [Learn more about the Iconosphere] [Cross Product Space] (entry port ABxAB) [Semi-linear blog-o-sphere] (and duck crossing)


(table of contents follows)

More Triple-Cross Products

NOTE: Recent theoretical work on the possibilities of Quadrupple (4-tupple) Cross Products has been suspended due to a lack of funding. Data processin continues - un-abated. AxB (v) :: C -[ SC x SP (Earth) :: (expressed via) ART -> Eco Psychology, etc]- See also: The name re-makes the thing (HUM x SCI (word) :: EXP as JAZ). -^_6 On this page: {Intro} {Free will} {Life, Death, Transcendence and other illusions} {Philosophy} {Logic} {Goedel and the Failure of Logic} {Grammars} {Origins} {Psychic Powers} {Quantum Reality} {Intro} {Information and Energy} {Time & Causality} {Perception} {Reality as we find it} {Links} {Quantum Thinking} {maps} {Spirituality and its "opposites"} {Spirutality: Extremities and Boundares}


Keys: {


See also: -[
time]- (futurist pespective) -[time]- (scientist perspective) -[Time Travel]- via: Fut x Abs (time) Note: There is NO absurdist, artistic, fractalist, humanist, or jazzist perspective of time; everything is "just" is; that is, "is is" -- (commonly refered to as "the is that is now"). -[(map entry)]- In this section: {Zeno and Time} {time as a never ending stream} {Time in Religion - a metaphysical analysis}

Zeno and Time

One of the classics of early non-western thought about time was that by Zeno. Note that Zeno was *not* a Greek scholar, instead he was a resident of the land to the east, and thus is often refered to as "Zeno of Mendeius". ??spelling?? It is also v. important to distinguish between this Zeno and a much later Platonic era philosopher known as "Zeno the Stoic". As such, it is difficult to remember that he (along with the other schollars of his area of the world) were thought to be "not quite right") by the Greek scholars such as Plato and Aristotle. To a certain extent, Plato's arguments of the "cave" are means (i would maintain) as responses to the various paradoxes and "way out" ideas of the so-called "pre-Socratic philsophers" of Mineleas. Indeed, much of Aristotle's arguments are in direct refutation to these early philosophers. Zeno had two main paradoxes for which he is known; both concerning the concept of infinite divisibility: Either of a segment of time, or a certain stretch of distance. The second of these has the several forms, the easiest of which is the idea idea that all motion is impossible by the folloiwng "argument". If we take shoot an arrow towards a target, then it must first travel half of the distance. But at that point, it still has half the distance yet to travel. But then at that point, it still has to travel half the remainder, etc. Thus, since it can never "finish" with the inifinites, it can never reach the target. Thus, motion is impossible. Of course this implies a similar problem with time. The "way out" is of two natures of the scientific: 1) An infinite number of numbers added together doe not necessarily have to add up to infinity. If we add 1 and 2 and 3 and .... we get of course infinity. (It takes us an infinite time to do this, so, it is best to use a -[
"Maxwell's Demon"]- for this, and have it (he? she? ne?) work infinitely fast! If on the otherhand, if we add and infinite number of terms and they *decrease* in a "sufficient" manner (we say that the infinite series is *convergent*), then the sum is a finite number; if we add 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, ... the sum turns out to be (at infinity) exactly 1 (with no fractional part of decimals (other than zero)). 2) Zeno forgot that the arrow travels smaller and smaller segments of distance and travels these in successively smaller and smaller segments to TIME. In the calculus of Infinitesiamls there is a theorem known as "L'Hostpital's Theorem" (pronounced loh-puh-tahl, the mathematician, being French at the time). It states that in the right conditions, the two infinites will cancel out exactly and that in fact the result will be a very nicely behaved, finite number (such as 1 or 2 or even pi, etc). This is the case of the arrow. There are two aspects to this "paradox" (at least) 1) Zeno seems to say that since we can continue to cut time into smaller and smaller pieces, that time is infinitesimal (infinitely small - even beyond the "usual" infinitesimals of maths). 2) Since the paradox exists, then time ISN'T divisible (apparently at all). Zeno (and other philosophers like him) were continually "testing" the boundaries of reason. Again, we should keep this in mind, since as we see in logic (below) that there are well and treuly times when logic gives if not the wrong answers, then at least answers that we tend to like for personal, predjudicial, etc reasons.

Tims as a never ending stream

the tribal notion of time the timeless of the "river of time" it is both no time and all times.

Time in Religon; a metaphysical analysis.

To take a restricted view of spirituality for a moment and to consider "the big three" (Judaism, Christanity, Islam). All three are intimately involved in the assertion that time is real, exists, and is (arguably) linear. The Jews are waiting for the Messiah (they do no accept Jesus as the saviour, per the Torrah), The Christians are waiting for the second coming (per the New Testament; specifically "Revelations according to John"), and the Muslims are waiting for the saviour (they do not regard Jesus as the saviour, but as a prophet, as with Mohammed). Waiting implies the passage of time. We will take it as read from a metaphysical POV, the big three take time as per: Time is isotropic -- it flows uniformly. It is linear if A, B, and C are three events in some relationship to each other, then that relationshipo can not and will not change regardless of the flow of time. Time is causal. If A precedes B, and B preceeds C, then A must preceed C That is: A-B and B-C implies A-B-C but NOT: A-B and B-C may imply A-B B-C A & C may have no relationship at all. Further we take it as (from ANY POV), that the big three do not accept the possibility of time travel -- at least to the past. Visions may reveal things about the future -- hence the traditions of prophesy, revelation, dreams, visions, etc. To concentrate on just one of these (the most intricately involved of the big three). The Christian redemption requires time since the keystone of Christian belief are the concepts of original sin, the resurrection of Jesus, and the redeption thru submission or at the very least un-vering acceptance/belief in Jesus' sacrifice. The need for time comes from the concept of "primal causes" ********** LINK??? of which God is taken as read as THE primal causes of all other causes, but requires no a-prioi cause. From the un-alterable past (another axiom of the big three), the fact that we are "all born in a state of sin" (again, un-arguable in Christian theology since we are "all the children of Adam and Eve"), and so therefore it follows, that in-controvertable time is REQUIRED as a result of the belief structure. Note however, that this follows as a requirement and not as an a-priori condition as a "part" of the universe as such. This pointed to directly by the early Christian theologian of Hipo (best known for his "The City of God") who wondered what God was doing before the universe began. Note that rejecting the possibility of non-absolute time (even the concept of relative time already shown to exist in physics), Christian theology avoids the "problem" presented by: Metaphysics: If God is outside of time, and Christ is embedded in time, Then how do we "resolve" the trinity problem? This goes back to Jesus as a part (assumed a temporal as well as spatial part) of God, but then God (again outside of time, must see all things clearly and "simultaneiously" and yet does nothing to change the state of any system. This of course goes back to "free will", "determinism" (absolute and pre-ordained/pre-envisioned/etc), as well as the usual problem with absolutes: "Chance vs. Necessity". **** web links here *** (would be nice)


See also: -[
Humanist Philsosophy]- (man as the measure of all things) -[Certainty and the Search for Truth] (in humanist) -[Scientific Philsophy]- (algorithms for scientific inquiry) -[Science's View of Philo] (in scientist) -^_6 In this section: {Intro} {Logic} {Goedel and the Failure of Logic} {Grammars}

Philo: Intro

Briefly, a Metaphysical Diversion

Roughly speaking, theology must of necessity deal with the concept of "god" (or gods, as one's b/g (back/ground) would require). From the spritualist POV, the god variable does NOT equal zero. From a purely philosophical POV, the god variable equals (or is nearly equal to) zero. The so-called "big three" (Judaism, Christianity, Islam) postulate that the god variable is set to exactly one and they alone have privy knowledge of the nature of "the one". See also: {
Spirituality and its "opposites"} (below). In the manner of new-age thinking (see map), the god variable may be some other value; eg, pantheists postulate that god is everywhere and hence a very large number indeed. animists see all things (rocks, air, plants, animals, the very air, etc) as being composed of fractions of life and that life IS god. hiduists follow a cosmology that divdes things into three major gods (birth, death, and repetition) as well a vast host of other (helper) gods, the most notable of which is (to my way of thinking), Hunamann ??sp?? who is a monkey spirit that assists Rama in rescuing his kidnapped wife. gaists (Gaia) belive that god is a woman (Mother Earth, the Natural Spirit of all things) and so forth. End Metaphysical Diversion.

Philosophy as Such

See also: {Schools of Pbilosophy} schools of philsophy sophistry, socrates, plato, ionian, etc soliphism, etc.... positivism In this section: {Logic: An Intro} {Logic as Such} {Goedel and the Failure of Logic} {Grammars} -^_6

Logic: An Intro

There are actually several kinds of beyond the simple logic of Aristtotle. His version of logic is commonly refered to as "propositional logic" and is given by the classic "sylogism" (an "equation" in logic): All men are mortal. Socrates is a man. Therefore Socrates is mortal. >-- The conclusion Logical arguments (such as those in "geometry proofs") string a number of such sylogisms together. A string sylogisms where the conclusion of one is the premise of the next is called a "sirosis" ??sp?? Another kind of logic is refered to as "modal logic" and this consists of the ability to talk about "possibilities" in logic. And entails the so-called area of "Proof Theory". That is how we prove things. This grew out of Reverend Berkley's (pronounced bark-lee) postulating that when we close our eyes (or divert our attention) that there is nothing to keep the universe from winking out of existence. Berkley's famouse dictim is given by: Percippire est existimare ??sp?? (Latin: To be perceived is to exist). That is only the things that we can see/hear/directly experience/etc exist. And thus by perceiving them, we make them real. Berkley (being a theologian) said that God was the un-blinking observer that "kept the world (universe) real". NOte that we can reverse the logic by the following two statements: To be perceived is to exist. To exist is to be perceived. The second one is a bit more powerful than the first, saying that if something exists, than we can perceive it. Again, the "God's Eye View" would be an omniscent God that perceives everything all the time. Thus, such phrases as "a sparrow falling" in traditional scripture indicating that even the smallest event does not escape God's attention. However, this more properly belongs in the discussion of theology or metaphysics. To go beyond Berkley, we might even say that the universe might have come into existence a fraction of a second ago. And so, what we take to be the "existance" of the universe is a fiction. As it turns out, all of this depends upon Aristotilian ??sp?? logic; ie, propoisitional logic. And that tends to deal in absolutes. Thus, while Plato viewed the possibility of other views of reality in his "Allegory in the Cave" ??LINK??, Aristotle was (almost) purely a materialist. Plato's cave alegory is important in that people who leave the cave if they return would have only fractions of referents to talk about. Hence whilest in the cave, the people there would have perceived "only" a shadow of (eg, a chair), while the person returning from their "other worldly" journey would have a vastly different and exapanded view of the concept of "chairness". -^_6 Refer to: -[
HU x HU (anthropology, perception) --> Cultural Relativism]- Thus, we interpret the world through our experiences and of course our thoughts. Note that in philosophy we may well consider "impossible" or at the very least "un-likely" ideas, events, etc. Thus, we require a "meta language" or a "meta logic" to talk about how we use language and logic themselves. These are treated in the next two sections. One of the earliest people to question how we use logic was Kurt Goedel as well as the so-called "Vienna School" of Logic. It was a group of people (mostly -{"logial positivists"}-) who maintained that -^_6 Logic as Such}

Logic as Such

THe b/g info on this is currently being researched, we appologise for the inconenience; please make other arrangements. -- the management.

Goedel and the Failure of Logic

russell and whitehead fricke russell's paradox the axiom of choice, etc. Enter Modal Logic


Schools of Philsophy

Philo: Logical Positivism

(under review; we appologise for the inconvenience)

Free Will

See also: -[
The illusion of control]- An old conundrum in theology goes like this: How many angels can danse on the hea of a pin? It is supposed to indicate the infinite powers of God (usually taken to be one of the various gods (Yahweh, Jehova (THE God), or Allah) of the so-called "big three" religions of the western tradition). A simple (and slightly absurdist way to get out of the whole mish-mash) is to reply thusly, How many angels can danse on the head of a pin? As many as want to. Of course, this introudces the so called "free-will problem". Inherent in this is the so-called problem of "Chanse vs. Necessity". Much of this (and many of a scientist inclination or at least a meta-physical) is a problem in "muddled" thinking). Regardless... Chance vs. necessity usually runs thusly: 1) God gave man free will, for without free will, man is an autonomoton (or lacks as Mark Twain called it "a moral center or moral conscience" -- and thus like an animal can not freely choose NOT to sin. (Somehow in big three religions, the morality (or non-morality of non-animals ever seems comes into play. Twain explores this (slightly) in one of his final and most scathing indightments of human behaviour, "The Mysterious Stranger"). Thus, if a person falls into an icy river and drowns the river is "not to blame". If an animal pushed (or drags, etc) them into the water and they drown it is again *not* the fault of the animal. But, (so argues Twain and many theologians) if a person pushes the person in, then they have sinned. This is because they have free will and could have chosen NOT to act. -[Action]- (see map) 2) But, because God is all knowing, (and even setting asside the "fact" that God created man (in his own image) in the first place), and thus would already have known what would happen. Thus, the paradox and its various arguments begins: Is God to blame for the death? Yes: Since He (it's always a "he" with the Big Three) created the entire situation (man with all his faults), the earth (and hence by causality all that would occur afterwards in the natural world). Further, since God is all knowing he already knows that the man will fail, push the person in, and thus sin. Regardless of one's stand on the subject of Jesus (either as saviour, or "mere" prophet) one can not escape God's responsibility in this. He (like the disabled Robot CAN act to prevent the situaltion, but this would obviate the whole free-will vs will-to-not-sin problem inherent in the entire concept of sin, salvation, etc. If God keeps showing up at the last minute to keep a person from sinning (or sends angels to likewise) then what is the purpose of providing free will? Thus, it pretty much looks like humanity can NOT win. The only "out: is that one believes, as does Christianity, that by accepting Jesus as saviour (and not as "mere" prophet (as do Islamics), or as "just a good man" (as do many Judaics, as well as well-meaning free thinkers) -- only then is man forgiven for his (inherent sinning nature). These kinds of problems are almost endless since one has only to think of the story (historical fact? theologcial corner-stone? borrowed parable?) of the garden of Eden to see that the problem goes back to possibly being the fault of God. He tells Adam and Eve (in the Geneis version) NOT to eat of the Apple for it would give them knowledge of good and evil. Of course they being innocent (and God somehow not noticing the snake (which many take to be Satan)) of course DO eat the apple. It is not clear what this all means. If Adam and Eve haddn't eaten the apple, then none of us would exist since Adam didn't "know" Eve until after they ate the apple. Thus, what IS the purpose of creation? Was it to create the current situation? But, God being "all knowing" would already have known how it would have come about. And then comes the problem of "free will" with respect to not only the Devil (Satan) but the Angels as well. Your humble narraator (who is not really much more than a simple librarian) is hardly worth to explore the concept further here, since probably something like a BILLION (thousand million) pages have already been written about it, and some greater portion of the existent history of the human race has been in one way or another been fought over this and far more deeply religious beliefs. Existentialist philosophers considered the problem in a round-about way: As long as man thinks that he has free will (even if it is "merely" an illusion) and is not restricted in his actions then he DOES have free will. And thus, "judgements" in the world are really "merely" points of view. Thus, action is tied to almost totally non-understandable "hidden variables" (as many physicists might put it). Thus, in Albert Camus' "The Stranger", Merseeme ??sp?? does know WHY he killed the Arab, he does know WHY he does (or not) loves his girl friend, indeed he does not know if his execution has any meaning at all or if indeed the laws of man, god, the universe have any meaning or purpose. (Those that would dismiss this as "mere" nihilistic hand-waving have not "thougth it through" -- i would maintain. One of the exisitentialist "opposites" of Camus, Jean Paul Sartre examined the concept of free will, "trapped action", morality, etc in his play "The Flys" -- set against the re-telling of Aesculus's ??name?? play "Agamemnon" in his trilogy by the same title. Like it or not, these problems can not simply be disuaded by the "pressing of finger tips together" and a derrogatory tone -- Cardinal Muggridge not-with-standing. As such, i shall only summarise as follows: If there IS such a thing as "free will" (and not as many psychologists including the late, great B.F. Skinner think merely what Darwin refered to as "an excretion of the brain in much the same manner that movement is an excretion of muscle" (not an exact quote)), then it should be (clearly, *i* would maintain) be directed towards the greatest good for the greatest number. And that this good should NOT be limited to spiritual matters alone. Indeed, as one group of musicians (Jews for Jazz; based in Israel at the very heart of the land-based conflict between The Big Three) put it: We should be arguing over blues riffs, not land. Simpler, more-innocent words than these can i not more wisely hope to put.


See also: {
Quantum Reality} (below) -[scientist entry]- This section takes "free will" as read. How do we determine our "reality". That is, what is that we fill our lives with that gives shape, colour, texture, etc. to our existance. When one considers the play of chance (fate, luck, etc) in the world at large, then one must necessarily consider the implications of such ideas in one's own life. Again, this comes to the very humanistic idea that *I* am the centre of the universe and therefore everything exists so that i can exist. -[Anthropic-Principle in Humanist]- So, if we can just set our egos aside for a moment and look at the concept of determinism from a more universal and less personal POV. -^_6


See also: [
The Big Bang] (in scientist) the concept of origin vs continuousness concepts of time mythology religion (quote by susan langer) an origins sampler qq from h2g2

Psychic Powers (ESP)

See also: -[
scientist entry]- Interestingly enough, Einstein wrote an introduction and recomendation to a book on Psychic Phenomenon (early in the 1900c). But later retracted his support when the author maintained that psychic energies traveled at infinite speeds. Einstein's theories maintain that nothing can travel faster then the speed of light. Despite the enquiries and theories by some scientists, this theory has not been contradicted. Thus, we may presume that Einstein withdrew his support since the theory of esp contradicted a fact to which he knew to be true. Oddly enough, if pychic energies are (like other forms of "normal" energy) limited to the speed of light, then we have a curious parallel. When Galileo set out to measure the speed of light, he went out one night with his assistant and they went up on top of distant hilltops with coverted latterns and then he attempted to time the round trip that it took for light to leave his lantern and reach the distant site, and then (taking out the reaction time of his assistant of course), the time to return. He concluded that "if the speed of light isn't infinite, then it is very fast", not an exact quote. Then the author (of the esp book) might have simply mis-interpreted the very LARGE speed of light (186_000 miles per SECOND - 300_000 km/sec or 700_000_000 miles per HOUR - or about "a hundred and ten billion kilometers an hour!" -- woosh!!) with infinite; hard to believe this, but it has a LOT more zeres than "just" a million or a billion! I shall take it upon upon my self to use the terms ESP and "Psychic Powers" internachagibly. Technically, "ESP" (Extra Sensory Perception) -- that is "outside of 'normal' percepiton") is a SUB SET of all (now known as well as all possible) pcychic powers. Actually, there's a good reason for this: I keep typing "psychci" or similarly for "psychic". This,i'll usually use the notation "ESP's" for the largest set of psyhcic powers. We appologise for teh inconfencience. Finally, to keep a few (not quite) closed minds at least partially open, i wold begin that i have several views concerning esp (setting my own biases asside for the moment) 1) Our "normal" (five or six) senses are so strong that they tend to "filter out" (mask) any other possible senses. 2) Even if a sense was only accurate 51% of the time (just like a gambling scheme), it would certainly be worth investigating. 3) Recent evidence seems to support the idea that the "skeptic effect" is measurable and real. This was the clain by supposedly esp gifted people, as to why when they were examined by skeptics their talents seemed not to work. 4) If anyone actually had some esp talents, the last thing that they would do would be to go on national TV and be noticed by the authorities. As we all "know" both the US and USSR (and other countries probably as well) carefully investigated the possible use of esp powers. So, the last thing that the little old lady from Passedina who uses Tea Leaves to correctly pick lottery tickets wants to do is to win more than $40 every now and then, since larger amounts are automatically reported to the authories (our dear friends at the IRS) and that's the last thing she really needs. 5) We must (as James Randi and other magician/skeptics warn us) to not discount the possiblity of trickery. Just notice how politicans (usually only using visual/sound/propaganda) are able to sway us, and then later when we've been bamboozeled, they're even able to pretend that it was our fault -- or they get their cronies to help out by saying that THEY tried to tell all the time about that guy -- thus, setting us up for the next round of being bamboozled. And they aren't even using ESP powers! (Or perhaps? see: charisma, below). So, imagine what some one could do if they new a few parlour tricks? These cases are of course well documented in the history of Houdini - both in an excellent film with "Tony Curtis" as well more documentary works; ie, Houdini's debunking of mediums when he was attempting to contact his deceased mother. So, as always: Beware the trickster! 6) The human race (for all its purported advances, goodness, and inherently proper behariour), is for my money the most self-centered, egotistical, selfish, predjudiced, righteously bigoted, and stupid of almost any species that i've ever encountered, so the last thing that ANYONE should do is give them any more power than they already have. But, hey: That's just me. Onward with the show! There are several types (if we must resort to reductionist thinking and classify and separate things) of EPS's (psychic powers), something like: -^_6 { 1. Extensions of "normal" senses.} { 2. Replacement of "normal sensese.} { 3. Altered states of Awareness.} { 4. Transcendent Powers.} { 5. A Pataphysical Investigation of EPS's.}

ESP's: Extensions of "normal" senses.

Of the six senses, the only ones that seem to fall under a direct study of esp would be: Touch, Hearing/Speaking, and Seeing. Touch is pretty much the most fundamental of senses, viz the fact that despite being cut off by speech, hearing, and sight Helen Keller was able to be "contacted" by Anne Sullivan. (She pays tribbute to Sullivan in her book "Teacher"). As such, we begin there. There are two aspects ot touch that have provoked investigation. Being able to sense things (through touch or something like it) that we can not see (clairvoyance - Latin: "Clear seeing") as well as being able to be able move things WIHOUT touching them (telekinesis - Greed "far touching"). Note that clairvoyance has a "future or far" seeing aspect, that we will deal with below. For the present, the idea is that one can "feel" or "touch" an object with one's mind rather than physically. This would be to "see" the object in a way that would could not normally perceive the object. It also includes being able to tell more about the object by the way that it feels. In this case the person might actually touch an object and be able tell more about it - especially if it has some special meaning, history, or other aspect to it. This seems to be the esp power often used by psychics used by various police departments to solve crimes. They are presented with an object or an picture and then "go beyond" what the police already know (or alternatively are able to bring up facts that the police know, but that the psychic has now way of knowing). Again, how these "clairvoyant" senses works has yet to be adequately investigated. I will take it as read that we dismiss the "spoon benders" right now - i for one have never had ANY urge to bend ANY spoon (either by direct touch or by telekinnetic power). The ability to move an object with the mind is a very marginal case at best. In the first place the power of the mind is very weak (if we look at the micro and nano (millionth and billionth) of a volt that the brain generates. But, balanced against this is the very weak force of gravity. I'd say it's even money. Unfortunately (on Earth) you have the gravity of the *entire* Earth to contend with - as such, it looks like the odds are against it. The futurist/writer J. Michael Strawinski (who wrote the "Babalyon 5" seriecs) has in one episode the only sensible approach i think: Working on very small things and then working your way up. In this case the character (Ironheart) was able to ultimately go "the other way" to the point of being able to maniuplate the very forces of the universe itself at the sub-sub-atomic layer. If nothing else, it should serve as a cuationary tale. Finally, as i have said: Start by trying to move a sliver of paper (or a paper clip), then try to move potted palms. (I take it as read that even if he *does* have any esp powers, for the most part Uri Geller (professionally trained as a magician; see warning #5, above) is for the most part a charletain.

ESP's: Replacement of "normal sensese.

This area is one of the least controversial of esp powers, and *does* tend to border on urban legend at times. The idea is that if one sense is less strong (eg, in the case of a blind person) that other senses become stronger. I had the opportunity to attend a lecture given by a well known neurologist and when asked about this replied to the effect that any time one part of the brain is not used, the body (as in the case of blindness or stroke injury) will automatically begin to "map" other senses or information to the un- or under- used portions of the brain. He said that in some cases this is actually detrimental. In one case where a body with severe seizures had part of the brain removed, the brain (after some time) started trying to "fix" the situation by actually returning to the seizure state and a second operations was necessary. That is the brain "thought it was NORMAL for the seizures (and their under-laying causes) to be occuring and so was (as always) fixing things. In addition, there is evidence in the "normal" senses, that "practice makes perfect". This is to the extent that some people can develop quite amazing abilities. An example was the ability to remember stings of numbers - most of us can manage between 7 and 10 (the number in a phone number or id number). As it turns out there are critical exercises and ways of increasing this via trainging, and with a short time (some) people could develop the ability to memorize not only long (eg, 100 digits) of numbers (or of names, etc) but start the list anywhere in the string and go forward or backward. This of course is involved in the areas of so-called "idiot savant" as well as the well-known examples in autismm, etc. Also, see "sneory depravation" below.

3. Altered states of Awareness.

One of the earliest scientific experiments were the so-called "sensory depravation by John Lily (also the same person who first started to systematically try to "talk" to dolphins using sound, etc.). The person is emersed in a tank and then after a while may in fact experience a "trip" of some sort. Of course, the well documented cases of LSD, extended periods of fasting, herbal, etc methods of achieving either a drugged or altered state of existence are well known as well. THis also goes back to the idea of trances that are often used by mediums, gurus, shamans, seers, etc. Of course these have not been studied in anything approaching sufficient detail. Which is rather odd, since there is incontrovertably one state of altered awareness that is well documented (alghouth equally well NOT understood) and in fact used in clinical practice: Hypnotism. I rest my case. Well not quite: When a person can have surgery performed using either accupuncture or hypnosis and with no (apparent) pain - then i say it should be investigated. When i have *any* dental work done, it takes several (more thanusual) shots of novacaine to get me anywhere near comfrotable - and that's not even counting the mental axiety. Finally: Trancendental meditation (the same neurologist mentioned above said, that he not believed in its effectiveness, but practiced it himself, and the change in brain waves HAD been investigated), "yoga breathing" (my own personal meditative favorite), image therapy, etc. Oh, well, it's always just easier to "pop a pill" now isn't it?

4. Transcendent Powers.

The distinguishing mark for what i mean by "transcendent" rather than "extensory" (ie, entension of normal senses) is that hwile "far seeing" (aka "remote viewing) might reveal somehting beyond the normal ability of eyesight, you can not see things that have happened or yet to happen, or perhaps can never have/or will happen. This is the pervay of: Visions. In this section: {
Visions} (and dreams) {Divination} {Charisma}


See also: {
Divination} (below) In the areas of the doctor/shaman/guide/seer in tribal customs, the powers may be set different or the same person. -[brief discussion of the differernces]- Seeing the future is essentially tapping into a stream of possible futures and selecting one or more of them as *probabable*. For the most part this is going to be v. difficult at best. As such, it's ususally when the mind is at rest, distracted, or in some altered sence of consciousness that it can "tune in" to the more tangible of the futures and "figure" out what it means. Imagine looking at a screen onto which many different movies are being projected and trying to track just one of them. Of course, the problem is that they all "look" equally probable, the real challenge comes in detecting which is the *real* future. More to the point is the idea of being able to prevent a particular future from occuring or more importantly being there when it does start to ocucr and changing the conditions (possibly only very slightly) and thus changing the un-folding future; ie, preventing/changing it.


See also: {
Visions} (above)

Use of Coloured Stones

One casting method uses coloured stones as follows: [From Telesco, P. 156] Blue --- Be confident of your abilites; practice realness. Green -- Apply love in this situation; reconnect. Orange - Keep your eyes on one goal; recognise. Purple - Stay flexible and go with the flow; live presently. Red ---- Apply personal energy but avoid stress; be thougthful. White -- Stay awake and aware; live attentively. Yellow - DOn't give up; pray for courage and strength.
(this section only) Telesco, Patricia (2000). Shaman in a 9 to 5 World. DD: 133.43'T269S


Finally, let us look at the ideas of "psychology" and in particular "charisma". There have been numerous studies of human leadership skills and how they work in cases of one-on-one or in groups. I have seen this at work on numerous times, and am never ceasing to be amazed at the powers of persuasion some people have. As one (Jew) said when listening to Hitler, "It was all i could do to keep myself from raising my hand in salute as well." (pretty much an exact quote). Those if there are decernable/controlable mental fields, it seems pretty clear that some people are much more in control or sensitive to them than the average joe or sally. And of course, if you couple with with technology, then the general public's ignorance of the ideas of propaganda, coercive psychology, etc -- well, then you pretty much get the world as we have it today. This all goes back to an argument (as i recall) in "The Republic" where the idea is about "morality". And the argument was about (as i recall the "Gyre ring" (or something like that), when if you put it on it would make you invisible. THe argument was that given THAT kind of power, anyone would try to get away with crimes. Plato (via the voice of Socrates) said that a moral person (properly brought up) would be able to resist by the simple idea that if they could do something without the ring and "feel ok" with it, then they had a "moral centre" -- i'm paraphrasing. Of course, that's the idea: Frederick Nitche stated that if there were supemen (people with exceptional powers) they would naturally "rise to the top". Nitche didn't think that this was right, or that people were automatically forn as masters or slaves, but that they became conditioned to the role that they *perceived* themselves to "born into". A careful reading of his works sees that he is no Machivellian opportunist as usually portayed. but Plato maintained that with proper trainging (guided by the enlightened "Philospher Kings", man could achieve utopia. So, i guess i would say: At least *try* to lead a moral life, even if you *can* turn invisible. (If for no other reason for the *intellectual* challenge ;)

5. A Pataphysical Investigation of EPS's.

Quantum Reality

See also: -[
Randomness and Creativity]- (mfa entry) -[Quantum Mechanics]- (scientist entry) -{Quantum Thinking}- (below) -[Certainty and the Search for Truth] (in humanist)]-

Interworking of Ideas

In this section let us examine the impact of the (taken as read) quantum nature of the brain and the ideas of perception. See also: -[ESP]- (above) In this section: {Intro} {Information and Energy} {Time & Causality} {Perception} {Reality as we find it} {Links}

Quantum Reality: Intro

We take as read (but not necessarily completely understood or adequately explained) all experiments in quantum physics in the *strict* sense of physics. We especially take the following examples from physics: delta x times delta p >= h-bar delta t times delta E >= h-bar where: x is the position of a particle or object p is its mommentum t is the time of the "operation" E is the energy involved h-bar is Plank's constant divided by 2 pi delta is Heisenber's usage of "uncertainty" Simply put, this means that for a quantum particle (eg, an electron) we can not simultaneously determin its exact position (x) and its momentum (p, read that as including its velocity). Likewise a consseuqnce of the second equation is that in a very brief time, out of nothing a small amount of energy may be created and then disappear. This manifests itself mostly in the creation of electron/positron (ie: matter/anti-matter) particles that come into existence and then vanish. Also, a consequence (supported by abundant evidence) is that two systems can either interact or not - but not in-between. However, it turns out to be impossible to "test" one system without disturbing it. Current ideas are that a *particle* must be exchanged if *any* information is to be gleaned from the system under observation. Hence: "To detect is to disturb". It turns out (apparently) that you can't even sort of second guess by saying "well, i know that i sent in this particle with this amount of energy" and so the *observed* state means that previously it MUST have been in such and such a state. That's what the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle is all about (and despite as much as we'd all like to have a "transporter", it looks like there can *never* be such a thing as Star Trek's "Heisenberg Compensator" to nullify the inherent quantum nature of our entire universe. Refer also to the excellent little book by Martin Reese "Just Six Numbers" where he discusses the various naturs of the physical constants - v. light reading from one of the smart ones. (Now if the rest of the (*#$#! human race would get its act together and start conserving resources! - myself included, dag nabbit)... Another consequence of this was when Stephen Hawking considered what happens if this electron/positron "creation/anihilation pair" occurs near a black hole and one of the particles goes into the black hole - ie, falls inside the event horizon. This leads to the idea of black holes "leaking" and several problems in QM + Relativity which lead to Hawking retracting early work to postulate that indeed SOME information can be "leaked thru" the black hole. This consequently led to several fanciful (but possible) things: Rotating black holes *might* (in some formulations) make a time machine possible - along with the *very* ify "worm hole" idea. A "super computer" using a black hole could conceivably computer every known state - or so goes the idea; hence the ultimate super computer. In theory, it could predict the future. How all of the above *technology* is to be accomplished is rather beyond most of the fanciful physics of even star trek - which sadly just blythely waltzes thru any any number of almost insurmountable problems; live long and prosper, but in the mean time take the space shuttle. The fall out of all of this are some very "weird" effects (mostly only observable at the molecular level or downward towards quarks). 1) An event can have no determinable outcome until it is actually examined; eg, "Schrodinger's cat". In a sense until the state is KNOWN to the out-side world (ie, the "quantum state is colapesed") it exits in ALL possible states. 2) If a pair of particles are joined in an exeperiment but it is not known what state they are in, and they are then separated - it (apparently) is that when one determines the state of one, it FORCES the state of the other to become fixed as well. This can (in theory) exceed the speed of light and involved "hidden variables". Bohr and Einstein argued over this and still no real solution has been found; ommonly known as the "ESR Paradox". 3) Particles can "tunnel thru" energy and physical barriers since they can be "squeezed" on one side of the barrier and then *suddenly* pop out on the other side. Whether they pass thru the barrier or simply vanish on one side and then re-appear on the other side is problematic. Again for the most part ALL of the above "weird" things occur only at the molecular or smaller level of the unvierse. Also, please don't quote me on all of tis. - frank email: fleeding@hotmail.com Regardless, several things then present themselves: 1) The nature of causality. 2) The nature of our own actual brain as a quantum device. 3) Perception of reality, future events, and observable events.

Quantum Reality: Information and Energy

Quantum Reality: Time & Causality

Quantum Reality: Perception

Quantum Reality: Reality as we find it

Quantum Reality Links

(this section only) -[
Jump page with papers on Q/R]- -[Roxanne's notes on EPR, etc]- -[Her rendering of Einstein's thought experiment]- [Note 1] (her paper mirroed below with notes) -[An physics set up to test the EPR Paradox]- -[Her rendering of Einstein's thought experiment]- The following outline the so-called "Copenhagen" (ie, Neils Bohn and his student Heisenberg) view of QM -[]- [Note 2] (his paper mirroed below with notes) The following are papers on the PHILO implications of all of this. Again the way we see the world depends heavily upon the pardigms within which we think -[Interesting philo paper]- [Note 3] (his paper mirroed below with notes) And of course the "ever troublesom" Bell's theorem... -[wiki]- [Note 4] (their paper mirroed below with notes) -[Cruzio's pages]- -[and cruzio's excellent bibliography]- -[]-


(this section only - Quantum Reality)
[1] Mirrored from: -[
Roxanne's notes]- One of the first physicsts to be publically troubled by the philosophical interpretations of quantum mechanics was Albert Einstein. In 1935, he co-authored a paper which was intended to show that Quantum Mechanics could not be a complete theory of nature. The arguments in the EPR paper are very similar to ones which Einstein himself made in correspondences to friends, but are not exactly the same.1 The first thing to notice is that Einstein was not trying to disprove Quantum Mechanics in any way. In fact, he was well aware of its power to predict the outcomes of various experiments. What he was trying to show was that Quantum Mechanics could not be a complete theory of nature and that some other theory would have to be invoked in order to fully describe nature. The argument begins by assuming that there are two systems, A and B (which might be two free particles), whose wavefunctions are known. Then, if A and B interact for a short period of time, one can determine the wavefunction which results after this interaction via the Schroedinger equation or some other Quantum Mechanical equation of state. Now, let us assume that A and B move far apart, so far apart that they can no longer interact in any fashion. In other words, A and B have moved outside of each others light cones and are therefore spacelike separated. With this situation in mind, Einstein asked the question: what happens if one makes a measurement on system A? Say, for example, one measures the momentum value for system A. Then, using the conservation of momentum and our knowledge of the system before the interaction, one can infer the momentum of system B. Thus, by making a momentum measurement of A, one can also measure the momentum of B. Recall now that A and B are spacelike separated, and thus they can not communicate in any way. This separation means that B must have had the inferred value of momentum not only in the instant after one makes a measurement at A, but also in the few moments before the measurement was made. If,on the other hand, it were the case that the measurement at A had somehow caused B to enter into a particular momentum state, then there would need to be a way for A to signal B and tell it that a measurement took place. But, the two systems cannot communicate in any way! If one examines the wavefunction at the moment just before the measurement at A is made, one finds that there is no certainty as to the momentum of B because the combined system is in a superposition of multiple momentum eigenstates of A and B. So, even though system B must be in a definite state before the measurement at A takes place, the wavefunction description of this system can not tell us what that momentum is! Therefore, since system B has a definite momentum and since Quantum Mechanics cannot predict this momentum, Quantum Mechanics must be incomplete. {Back up to the TEXT, above} [2] Mirrored from: -[]- [xxxx] indicate my notes Transactional Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics by John G. Cramer 2.0 The Copenhagen Interpretation As was implied in the introduction, we consider the theory of quantum mechanics to be divisible into a formalism and an interpretation. We will assume for the purposes of the present work that the formalism of quantum mechanics is correct and is well supported by experimental evidence. We will therefore focus on the interpretational part of the theory and in particular on the Copenhagen interpretation. Despite an extensive literature which refers to, discusses, and criticizes the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics, nowhere does there seem to be any concise statement which defines the full Copenhagen interpretation. We require a definition of the CI for the discussion which follows, and so we have attempted to provide a definitive statement by summarizing the extensive discussions by Jammer (1966) and Audi (1973) in a few sentences, identifying what we consider to be the key concepts. We have been able to identify five principal elements: {CI1} The uncertainty principle of Heisenberg (1927): this includes wave-particle duality, the role of canonically conjugate variables, and the impossibility of simultaneously measuring pairs of such variables to arbitrary accuracy. {CI2} The statistical interpretation of Born (1926b): this includes the meaning of the state vector (see Section 2.1) given by the probability law (P=*) and the predictivity of the formalism only for the average behavior of a group of similar events {footnote 5}. {CI3} The complementarity concept of Bohr (1928): this includes the "wholeness" of microscopic system and macroscopic measurement apparatus, the complementary nature of wave-particle duality, and the character of the uncertainty principle as an intrinsic property of nature rather than a peculiarity of the measurement process. {CI4} Identification of the state vector with "knowledge of the system" by Heisenberg {footnote 6}: this includes the identification itself and the use of this concept to explain the collapse of the state vector {footnote 7} (see Section 2.3) and to eliminate simple nonlocality problems (see Section 2.4). {CI5} The positivism of Heisenberg {footnote 8}: this includes declining to discuss "meaning" or "reality" and the focusing of interpretive discussions exclusively on observables {footnote9}. These five elements comprise, for the purposes of the present discussion {footnote 10}, the Copenhagen interpretation. 2.0.1 The Functions of the Copenhagen Interpretation Two distinct functions are performed by the CI (or for that matter, by any physical interpretation of a mathematical formalism). First, as many authors have emphasized, the interpretation must provide a connection between the mathematics of the formalism and the physical world. This connection makes it possible to test the formalism by confronting its predictions with experimental results. Without some interpretation of the symbols of the formalism in terms which can be related to experimental observables the formalism remains abstract mathematics without a physical context. It is perhaps in this sense that Bohr maintained (Popper, 1967) that the Copenhagen interpretation had been "proven by experiment". However, there is another function of the interpretation which is sometimes overlooked. This function relates to the question of how the theory deals with unobserved objects (Reichenbach, 1944). While participating in a colloquium at Cambridge, von Weizs?cker (1971) denied that the CI asserted: "What cannot be observed does not exist". He suggested instead that the CI follows the principle: "What is observed certainly exists; about what is not observed we are still free to make suitable assumptions. We use that freedom to avoid paradoxes." This principle does not, of course, uniquely define the CI, but it does give an important criterion for developing a consistent interpretation of a formalism. The interpretation must not only relate the formalism to physical observables. It must also define the domain of applicability of the formalism and must interpret the non-observables in such a way as to avoid paradoxes and contradictions. It may seem surprising that the interpretation of a physical theory can perform the function of avoiding "paradoxes", i.e., internal contradictions and conflicts with other established theories. It is therefore useful to consider some examples. Newton's second law, F=ma, is of no physical significance until the symbol F is identified as a vector representing force, a as a vector representing acceleration, and m as a scalar representing mass. Further, while F and a can have any (real) magnitude and direction, the formalism is interpreted as meaningful only when m>0. This is because zero and negative masses lead to unphysical (or paradoxical) results, e.g., infinite acceleration or acceleration in a direction opposite that of the force vector. Or consider the Lorentz transformations of special relativity for the case v>c. Until fairly recently physicists had always applied to this case Interpretation A: "The transformations with v>c produce unphysical imaginary values for the transformed variables and are therefore meaningless." But recently an alternative has been suggested by Feinberg (1967, 1978) as Interpretation B: "The transformations in the v>c domain describe a new kind of particle called the tachyon which has the characteristic of imaginary mass, which always travels at velocity v>c, and which approaches the v=c limit asymptotically from above when it is given additional kinetic energy." While the tachyons of Interpretation B are by no means an established physical phenomenon, this example illustrates how a change in interpretation can alter the meaning of a formalism, can extend the range of its application, and can deal with "paradoxical" or unphysical results", e.g., v>c and imaginary mass. A study of the debate over interpretation in the early history of quantum mechanics (Jammer, 1966) will show a similar process at work in early attempts to interpret the QM formalism. It is this process which produced the Copenhagen interpretation. In the present context it should be clear that elements CI1 and CI2 fulfill the function of relating the formalism to experiment, while elements CI3-5 perform the function of avoiding paradoxes, and particularly those associated with the collapse of the state vector and with nonlocality (see Sections 2.3 and 2.4). Moreover, it is only elements CI1 and CI2 which are employed by working physicists in using quantum mechanics. Indeed CI1 and CI2 are represented in many quantum mechanics textbooks as "the Copenhagen interpretation". Elements CI3-5 are held in reserve and usually employed only in pedagogical and philosophical discussions. Thus, Bohr's contention that the CI has been "proven by experiment" is perhaps correct as it applies to elements CI1-2 but not as it applies to CI3-5. Moreover, CI4 has, in effect, been tested by experiment (see Section 2.4) and found wanting, in that it has failed to neutralize the manifest nonlocality exhibited by carefully designed Bell Inequality experiments. In the remainder of this chapter we will list the interpretational problems presented by the QM formalism and will examine these problems from the point of view of the CI, as defined above. 2.1 Identity: What is the State Vector? In the formalism of quantum mechanics the possible states of a system are described by a state vector (SV), a function (usually complex) which depends on position, momentum, time, energy, spin and isospin variables, etc. The SV (which will be represented as |S> in the notation of Dirac) is the most general form of the quantum mechanical wave function (). The central problem of the interpretation of the QM formalism is to explain the physical significance of the SV. This we will call the problem of identity. The early semiclassical interpretations of de Broglie (1926, 1927a, 1927b) and of Schr?dinger (1927c) attempted to make the obvious and straightforward analogy between the matter waves of quantum mechanics and the classical waves of Maxwellian electrodynamics. This approach asserts that the state vector of an electron, for example, is the QM equivalent of the electric field of an electromagnetic wave. Thus the SV of an electron would be considered to start at the point of emission and to physically travel through space as a wave. It would exhibit the properties of a particle only when (and if) it interacted with a scatterer or an absorber. This apparently simple interpretation was found to lead to many conceptual problems. In particular, severe problems were found with the intrinsic nonlocality of such an interpretation (see Section 2.4). Heisenberg recognized these problems and argued strongly and successfully against the semiclassical interpretation {footnote 11}. He devised CI4 and CI5 specifically to avoid any association of nonlocal implications with the formalism. The CI approaches the problem of identity through CI2 and CI4. The statistical interpretation and the probability law of CI2 give limited meaning to the SV by representing it as the vehicle for describing the probabilities of various possible outcomes in a quantum event. This provides the needed connection between quantum mechanical calculations and experimental observations. CI2 is, however, vague on the question of whether there is some unique SV which describes the present and evolving state of the system and on the question of whether the SV has a physical location in space as the semiclassical interpretation would imply. CI4 is a more radical departure from the semiclassical interpretation in its description of the SV. According to CI4 the SV is not analogous to the electric field of a classical light wave or indeed to any other directly observable entity. Rather it is a mathematical representation of "our knowledge of the system" {footnote6}, (or more properly, that knowledge which is obtained by an ideal observer in an optimum experiment, the latter qualification covering the possibility that the actual experiment performed may be less than optimum due to noise, insensitivity, or other instrumental problems). The SV is approachable only through the results of a physical measurement. The observations from measurements, in an average and statistical way, determine the values of the absolute square of components of the SV. When a measurement is performed our knowledge of the system changes, and therefore the SV also changes. It instantaneously changes all of its components, even those which describe the quantum state in regions of space quite distant from the site of the measurement. 2.1.1 Action at a Distance? The instantaneous "propagation" of this change gives the appearance of action-at-a-distance, but it is accommodated by CI4 by associating it with a change in knowledge. According to CI4 when the SV describing the state of a particle (perhaps an electron) has a non-zero value at some position in space at some particular time, this does not mean that the SV is physically present at that point but only that our knowledge (or lack of knowledge) of the system allows the particle the possibility of being present at that point at that instant. Therefore, in CI4 the wave function which the Schr?dinger equation or its relativistic equivalent provides as a solution is not a physical entity, but rather an encoded mathematical message describing our knowledge of a physical entity. The identification of the SV in this way raises a number of questions which surround the phrases "our knowledge" and "the system". The language begs the questions "Whose knowledge?" and "What is meant by 'the system'?". The notion that the solution of a simple second-order differential equation (particularly an equation which is only an operator relationship between mass, momentum, and energy) is somehow a mathematical representation of "knowledge" is a very curious and provocative one. The concept of knowledge implies an observer who is the recipient of that knowledge. And because the results of a given experiment often contain information about the state of the system only in a very indirect and highly encoded way, that knowledge may be accessible only to a conscious and intelligent observer. Therefore the observer implicit in the CI has degrees of freedom which are not any explicit part of the QM formalism and which are not characteristics required of observers used, for example, in the interpretation of special relativity. Further, the concept of knowledge implies stored information, i.e., a memory to store the knowledge, a time sequence before and after the creation of the memory in the mind of the observer, and a flow of information representing a time dependent change in knowledge. Thus the CI implicitly associates with quantum events a time directionality which, while appropriate to macroscopic observers, is quite alien to and inconsistent with the even-handedness with which microphysics deals with the flow of time. Somehow the thermodynamic irreversibility of the macroscopic observer is intruding into the description of a fully reversible microscopic process. Moreover, the assertion that knowledge is changed by measurement is not free of ambiguity. Measurements performed on any real physical system invariably contain an element of noise which partially obscures the knowledge obtained from the measurement. CI4 makes no provision for such noise, but treats all measurements in the same way, even when the actual signal-to-noise ratio would be such as to preclude any real gain in knowledge from the measurement. The "measurement" which changes the "knowledge" is not the real measurement actually performed, but an ideal measurement from which optimum information is assumed to have been extracted. Further, the "measurement" event is implicitly given a special status which distinguishes it from otherwise identical interaction events, presumably because the measurement interaction effects the knowledge of the observer while otherwise similar interactions do not. 2.1.2 Uniqueness? The question of the uniqueness of the SV is not directly addressed by CI4. This leads to two possible ways of applying the CI4 "knowledge" interpretation when more than one observer make observations (perhaps simultaneously) on the same quantum mechanical system. These are: {CI4a} There is one unique SV which describes the overall state of knowledge of the system, and this SV is changed when any observer makes a measurement of the state of the system; or {CI4b} There are several non-unique SV's for a given system, each describing the knowledge of some particular observer of the system, and the SV for one such observer is different and distinguishable from the SV for any other observer of the system. In Section 2.4 we will see that each of these alternatives has its own problems. The seemingly innocuous phrase "the system" has also been found to provide semantic difficulties. Attempts to formulate a quantum mechanical version of general relativity and to employ the CI for its interpretation have foundered in attempting to treat the universe as a whole as a quantum mechanical "system", in the sense of CI4. In such a system there are (presumably) no external observers, and no "knowledge of the system" which can be changed by experiments external to the system. Therefore, CI4 cannot be used for a SV describing the universe as a whole. This calls into question the whole concept. Moreover, Wigner (1962) has demonstrated (see Sections 4.3 and A.3) that there are severe conceptual problems which arise when CI4 is applied to the SV of any system which includes a conscious observer within it, particularly when measurements on this system are performed by a second conscious observer external to the system. This has led him and others to conclude that the CI implicitly must give a special role to consciousness in the application of CI4. It is our conclusion from the above considerations that the approach of CI4 to the problem of identity is a relatively superficial one. It has raised as many problems as it has solved and has led its practitioners into very deep philosophical waters. We suspect that the broad acceptance of the CI's identification of the state vector with knowledge is attributable more to the lack of a satisfactory alternative than to its compelling logic. 2.2 Complexity: Why is the State Vector a Complex Quantity? One of the serious objections to Schr?dinger's (1927c) early semi-classical interpretation of the SV, as recounted by Jammer (1974), is that the SV is a complex quantity. Complex functions are also found in classical physics but are invariably interpreted either (1) as an indication that the solution is unphysical, as in the case of the Lorentz transformations with v greater than c or (2) as a shorthand way of dealing with two independent and equally valid solutions of the equations, one real and one imaginary, as in the case of complex electrical impedance. In the latter case the complex algebra is essentially a mathematical device for avoiding trigonometry, and the physical variables of interest are ultimately extracted as the real (or imaginary) part of the complex variables. Never in classical physics is the full complex function "swallowed whole" as it is in quantum mechanics. This is the problem of complexity. Born's (1926b) probability law (P=*) is the basis of the statistical interpretation which is embodied in CI2. Together with CI4 it provides a way of dealing with the problem of complexity. The SV is not directly observable and is not a real physical entity, and therefore its complex character is irrelevant. All physical observables depend on the absolute squares of the components of the SV, which are always real. CI4 interprets the SV as an encoded mathematical representation of "knowledge" removed from the domain of physical reality and thus makes its complex character more acceptable. However, this solution of the problem raises some questions of its own. Why is the probability equal to the absolute square of SV elements, rather than to the absolute value, or to the real part [as Born (1926a) first suggested], or to the square of the real part, or some other similar quantity? Why, moreover, is this mathematical representation of "our knowledge of the system" characterized by complex quantities which are very remote from our knowledge? And in particular, why does the SV involve an overall complex phase which can never, by any conceivable experiment, become a part of "our knowledge"? 2.2.1 Complexity and Time Some insight into these questions can be gained from the observation that the time reversal operator of Wigner (1950) is the operation of complex conjugation, i.e., reversing the sign of the imaginary part or the complex phase of the SV elements. Thus, the complex character of the SV is a manifestation of its time structure. The real part of the SV is time-reversal even, and the imaginary part is time-reversal odd. Moreover, a reversal of the complex phase of the SV reverses its time-sense and the signs of its energy and frequency observables. Thus, CI2, Born's probability law, implicitly tells us that the probability of a particular observation is obtained by taking the product of a component of the SV with its time-reverse. However, the CI provides us with no insight into why this should be the case. Why should probability be compounded of "knowledge" and the time-reverse of knowledge ("information loss"?)? 2.3 Collapse: How and Why Does the State Vector Abruptly Change? The SV of a system before a measurement is performed is very different from the SV immediately after the measurement, even when the measurement is not the final state of the system but rather one of a series of sequential measurements or operations, e.g., transmission through a polarizing filter or Stern-Gerlach apparatus. Wigner (1962), following von Neumann (1932), has pointed out that there are two distinctly different kinds of changes which the SV undergoes: (1) the SV changes smoothly and continuously with time as the system evolves; and (2) the SV changes abruptly and discontinuously with time in accordance with the laws of probability when (and only when) a measurement is made on the system. He further observed that from the point of view of classical physics these changes seem to be inverted: one would expect classically that the laws of probability and uncertainty would assert themselves in the time evolution of a wave but not in the act of measurement. A change in the SV of the second type described above is conventionally referred to as the "collapse of the state vector", and we will use this terminology {footnote 12}. It is an aspect of the formalism of quantum mechanics (von Neumann, 1932) rather than its interpretation, and it is the source of many of the most severe interpretational problems. As will be discussed in Section 4, gedanken experiments have been devised to demonstrate that, for example, the collapse can be precipitated by the absence of an interaction with experimental apparatus (Section 4.1), but on the other hand that the SV must remain uncollapsed after a photon has interacted with a pair of slits on the way to an experiment which may determine through which slit the photon has passed (Section 4.2). Element CI4 deals with the problem of collapse by identifying the SV with "our knowledge of the system", so that measurements which alter such knowledge will produce an abrupt change of type (2) above in the SV as a direct consequence of this change in knowledge. Since the SV is not physically present at the locations in space where it has a non-zero value, an abrupt change in these values does not lead to any problems with propagation times or speed-of-light delays in information transfer. On the other hand, Schr?dinger's (1927c) interpretation of the SV as a real semiclassical wave physically present in space has severe intrinsic problems with SV collapse. However, the CI4 account of collapse is not without its own problems. Wigner (1962) has pointed out (see Section 4.3) the conceptual difficulties implicit in the CI description of collapse when the SV describes a system containing an intelligent observer. He and others have suggested that the process of collapse should involve a special role for consciousness (Wigner, 1962), for permanent recording of experimental results (Schr?dinger, 1935), or for entry of the system into the domain of thermodynamic irreversibility (Heisenberg, 1960). In fact, most of the efforts to revise or replace the CI have focused on the problem of collapse, which remains the most puzzling and counter-intuitive aspect of the interpretation of quantum mechanics. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- {Back up to the TEXT, above} [3] mirrored from: Notes on David Peat, Einstein's Moon: Bell's Theorem and the Curious Quest for Quantum Reality History and Philosophy of Science - Fall, 1997 - Dr. Ess -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Outline: "Bohm, Bell - and Boom! The End of Modern Dualism" The End of Cartesian Dualism: Physics (re)discovers Philosophy: over against Cartesian and especially 19th ct. positivist dualisms which separate physics and philosophy - the emergence of quantum mechanics forces physicists to be become philosophers again. Indeed, the logic of complementarity which q.m. requires ripples into a larger (re)turn to complementary relationships between physics, philosophy, and religion. (In other terms: Cartesian dualism defines both 19th ct. positivism and fundamentalism as "mirror images" of one another: each agree that only one mode of knowing can be true - and the alternative mode(s) must be false: Positivism Fundamentalism ("calculative") reason (= natural science) ===== "religion" "religion" ====== reason/science The end of Cartesian dualism thus undermines the dualistic epistemologies of both positivism and fundamentalism.) First details: the indivisible wholeness of observer/observed, and particles as "standing probability waves" (re)turning us to the idealist epistemologies of Kant and Plato. "Does the Moon exist when we're not looking?": Physicists do Ontology (The Bohr vs. Einstein debate over nonlocal vs. local reality and the EPR paradox [Peat, ch. 4, "Bohr vs. Einstein"]) Bell's Theorem: described by some as "the most significant discovery in the history of science," Bell's theorem provides a way to empirically test two competing epistemological and ontological/metaphysical hypotheses - the more idealist/instrumentalist/nonlocal reality assumptions of quantum mechanics vs. the more empiricist/realist/local reality assumptions of Einstein and Newtonian physics. Experimental ("empirical") evidence falls clearly on the side of the idealist/instrumental/nonlocal reality assumptions of quantum mechanics. (That is, empiricism has proven idealism!) Implications: the empirical confirmation of q.m. (a) demonstrates that the "classical" mechanistic/atomistic/deterministic assumptions of modern Cartesian/Newtonian science are at best a "useful fiction" for the scale of reality human beings ordinarily experience - but are not an accurate account of the world at its most fundamental levels. Rather, (b) the holistic and probabilistic accounts of quantum mechanics - expressed ultimately as mathematical equations describing only probabilities and potentials - (re)turn us to more holistic models and accounts of reality, consistent with such accounts as developed both by philosophers such as Plato and in Western and Eastern religious traditions. Project: proposed assignments for synthesizing our survey of the history and philosophy of Western philosophy/science, from Thales through Quantum Mechanics. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The End of Cartesian Dualism: Physics (re)discovers Philosophy Peat makes clear that "The objections of physicists of the caliber of Einstein, Planck, and Schr?dinger to the new ideas that were emerging from Copenhagen forced Bohr and his two colleagues to create what philosophers call an epistemology - a theory of knowledge. In this case, it was a theory of what can be known about the atomic world. This theory has become known as the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum theory." (58) Point: the positivist turn of the 19th ct. would have scientists (and with them, all right thinking persons hip to modernity...) jettison all matters "merely speculative," - i.e., all philosophical and religious discussion involving non-material entities whose existence could not be demonstrated in empirical ways. Such discussion, first of all, would include precisely the questions of epistemology and metaphysics. What is nifty and striking about quantum mechanics, then, is that it forces - from within the domain of physics itself - scientists to turn to the traditionally philosophical task of constructing an epistemology. In short: while positivists sought to banish all things philosophical and religious in the 19th ct. - developments in 20th ct. physics force a resurrection of such classical philosophical topics as epistemology and metaphysics. [Historical point: this restoration of the "classical" complementarity between science and philosophy in part reflects the philosophical training of the European physicists responsible for both relativity theory and the Copenhagen Interpretation. In particular, Heisenberg has written on the relationship between Kant's philosophy and quantum mechanics ("The Development of Philosophical Ideas Since Descartes in Comparison with the New Situation in Quantum Theory," in Physics and Philosophy: The Revolution in Modern Science) - as well as recounting a conversation among Carl Friedrich von Weizs?cker, himself, and the Neokantian philosopher Grete Hermann in the early 1930's ("Quantum Mechanics and Kantian Philosophy," in Physics and Beyond: Encounters and Conversations.) This European inclusion of philosophy - even in the education of scientists and engineers - survives even today. For better or worse, it contrasts with the American system which characteristically ignores philosophy, especially in the training and education of scientists and engineers.] Larger point: moreover, the kind of epistemology and metaphysics developed in the Copenhagen school, while including the empiricist side of philosophy/science, also (re)turn us squarely towards the idealist side of philosophy/science - specifically, the (neo)Kantian view that stresses that the knowing subject is inextricably bound up with the construction of what is known/experienced. Another point: The complementarity at work in Quantum Mechanics - e.g., in the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle (the more one knows about location, the less one knows about velocity and vice-versa) and the wave/particle duality of subatomic entities - thus not only represents a fundamental rejection of the Cartesian dualism that dominated modern science; this complementarity further resonates with the complementarity apparent in the need for physicists - at least of the caliber of Bohr, Heisenberg, and Schr?dinger - to also be philosophers (specifically, epistemologists and metaphysicians). Indeed: as the connections between the world as understood at the quantum level and the essentially religious experiences of the world as an undivided wholeness suggest - this complementarity of ways of knowing can extend to religious experience as well. (In this connection, the brief profile of George F. R. Ellis (Scientific American, October, 1995, 50-55), provides a concrete example of a more than competent cosmologist - one schooled under Fred Hoyle alongside Stephen Hawking - who is also a practicing religious person. Indeed, Ellis sees [and lives accordingly] a scientific case to be made for a natural moral law consistent with a principle of selflessness found in every world religion. Again, there is here a complementarity between religious and scientific modes of knowledge, over against the dualistic opposition between religion and science forced upon us by Descartes and articulated by the positivists. Cf. as well the r?le of George La Mettre - a Catholic priest - in the development of the Big Bang theory, as nicely documented in the 2nd episode of Stephen Hawking's Universe.) -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- First details: the indivisible wholeness of observer/observed, and particles as "standing probability waves" (re)turning us to the idealist epistemologies of Kant and Plato Given the basic principle of quantum theory - that the quantum (of energy) is indivisible - ...we can never know exactly where any quantum comes from - we can never divide it into contributions made by atom and by apparatus - which implies that the moment the detector and the atom interact, the whole situation becomes an unanalyzable whole. It is unanalyzable becuse it is no longer possible to partition the situation into apparatus + atom - the two are bound together by a single, indivisible quantum. In Bohr's words, there is "an indivisible wholeness," an unanalyzable wholeness. At the moment of observation, the observer and observed make a single, unified whole. (62) This wholeness, moreover, means that it becomes problematic to speak of a particle as "having" properties (position, velocity) - because every measurement of these properties simultaneously means we interfere with the quantum objects we seek to know. Indeed, Max Born's colleague Pascual Jordan declared that observations not only disturb what has to be measured, they produce it. In a measurement, "the electron is forced to a decision. We compel it to assume a definite position; previously it was, in general, neither here nor there, it had not yet made its decision for a definite position....We ourselves produce the results of the measurement." (quoted by Max Jammer, The Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics (New York: John Wiley, 1974) On the other hand, when we are not observing an atom or electron, quantum theory dictates that we cannot even talk about its moving along a given path, or even of its being anywhere at all! According to Heisenberg, while measurements and laboratory observations are real, "the atoms or the elementary particles are not as real; they form a world of potentialities of possibilities, rather than one of things or facts." (Physics and Philosophy [New York: Harper Torchbooks, 1962]). (63: see also 64f.) To make the point provocatively: quantum mechanics provides us with a mathematical account of the most fundamental levels of "reality" - one that is instrumentally useful insofar as it allows us to predict and control future events (just as the Ptolemaic [earth-centered] system worked to predict future celestial events) but at the same time, this most fundamental reality is both indeterministic (because the particle as a wave function is simply a description of the probabilities of its possible behaviors - no single possible behavior must occur) and, in a carefully understood sense, simply a matter of potential being (because the probabilities describe only what can happen under given circumstances - i.e., what is yet to be, not [precisely] what [currently] is). In historical terms - quantum mechanics returns us not only to the epistemology of the modern philosopher Kant - but also to the ontology or metaphysics of the ancient philosopher Aristotle, who sought to explain change in part as a process of potentialities (things which "exist" only as potentials, not as something actual) - becoming actualities. Likewise, quantum mechanics (re)turns us to Plato, who argued that the universal, unchanging, unitary mathematical and ideal "forms "of the particular, diverse and changing "things" given to us in sense experience are more "real" (ontology) and "true" (epistemology). This means: those who reject the view of the world articulated by quantum mechanics because it apparently violates the "common sense" view of the world as defined by Newtonian physics (i.e., of a mechanical universe consisting of discrete pieces ["local" realities, as we will call them] whose interaction is fully determined by mechanical push-pull actions and forces); especially if this rejection turns on a) a refusal to (re)turn from the atomism of modern science to the wholism of quantum mechanics (and subsequent theory, such as David Bohm's theory of quantum potential and implicate order), and b) a refusal to (re)turn from the dualism of modern science (which forces the either/or choice between science and philosophy and religion, as expressed in 19th ct. positivism and fundamentalism) to the complementarity of quantum mechanics (and thereby the complementarity between science/philosophy/religion a complementarity characteristic of philosophy/science through most of its history); - such a rejection seems strongly analogous to the initial rejections of "new" theories in earlier history, as these apparently overturn previously accepted views. In sum: those who stubbornly hold to an atomistic, dualistic view of the world, as ostensibly "scientific," despite the developments of relativity and quantum mechanics, are the "flat-earthers" of our day. In our day, the obstacle to changes in scientific views is not so much a monolithic religious orthodoxy - but a secular dogmatism that believes its views to be "scientific," despite what science now says. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Physicists do Ontology: "Does the Moon exist when we're not looking?" (The Bohr vs. Einstein debate over nonlocal vs. local reality and the EPR paradox [Peat, ch. 4, "Bohr vs. Einstein"]) Einstein resists q.m. because of its probabilistic character ("God does not play dice," to quote the famous phrase), and because both the epistemology and ontology of the Copenhagen Interpretation clashed with his classical (Newtonian) belief regarding the essential separateness of subject and object - and the belief that an external reality does exist, independent of the subject/observer: This reality of Einstein's is known as a "local" reality. Each system or object can be defined and understood in its own particular region of space. Objects have their own independent existence, and if they change, then it must be as the result of interactions or forces acting from outside. These forces can also be defined in an objective way through the laws of nature. There are no mysterious "actions at a distance," no mystical influences. Objects possess properties, Einstein said. They move along paths; their fates are determined. But then Bohr and Heisenberg came along with complementarity and the uncertainty principle. They denied that the electron has a path, or even that it possesses any intrinsic properties like position and velocity. In fact, they seemed to be saying that the only reality one can talk about lies in the mathematical equations, and that there is no point in trying to construct mental models of the quantum world. To Einstein this was a "tranquilizing philosophy" (as he put it in a letter to Schr?dinger), a metaphysical approach to the world that induced a sleep of the mind by smothering questions about the ultimate nature of the quantum world. The Copenhagen interpretation was nothing more than "a soft pillow on which to lay one's head"; it was not a true theory of nature or an attempt to engage reality face to face, but an encouragement to daydream. (69) Out of this resistance comes Einstein's effort to refute q.m. - most powerfully, in the Einstein-Podalsky-Rosen paradox. The EPR paradox argues that we can get around the indeterminacy principle by taking the measurement of a particle's velocity or position as a way of "knowing" about its twin's velocity or position - apparently in contradiction to the Copenhagen Interpretation which says the velocity or position cannot be known until it is measured. Bohr's refutation of this is to point out that the paradox assumes what q.m. and the Copenhagen Interpretation deny - and what is at stake in the debate between Einstein and Bohr - namely, that the twin particle "has" any such property as velocity or location apart from measurement of the property. (See Peat, 79-81) In logical terms, the EPR paradox begs the question. In still other terms, Einstein's insistence on an independent reality with properties that exist apart from and prior to our knowing these in a measurement is a violation of strict empiricism - which demands that terms have no meaning unless those terms can be anchored in an empirical/sense experience. Interestingly, Pauli sees Einstein's insistence on the independent existence of particles and their properties as parallel to a notorious example of merely speculative metaphysics - i.e., the [alleged] discussion as to how many angels can sit on the point of a needle. (The Bohr-Einstein Letters [New York: Walker, 1971], quoted in Peat, 83.) This "metaphysical" (my term) insistence on an independent, external reality, note, contrasts with the account of the world provided by q.m.: Bohr had said, "There is no quantum world. There is only an abstract quantum mechanical description." Heisenberg had echoed, "The atoms or the elementary particles are not real; they form a world of potentialities and possibilities rather than one of things or facts." (Peat, 85) Cf.: "...the wave function [of the primordial source of the universe] is not real; it is simply a device used in the mathematics of quantum theory. Indeed, it is a wave of probability rather than an oscillation of matter. What the wave function describes is the probability that a particle will be discovered in a particular region of space should a measurment be carried out. This same wave function is also the mathematical tool used to predict the outcome of other experimental measurements. So what sense does it make to talk about the reality of wave functions and quantum states when no laboratory apparatus is around - indeed, when no large-scale world yet exists?" (86) This abstract, unreal world of potentialities and possibilities, however, resembles Plato and Aristotle's "metaphysical" accounts much more than Einstein's apparently "common sense" (pre-Kantian?) insistence on an independent, external reality! [Historical note: there is apparently no record of any medieval discussion of how many angels could sit/dance on the head of a pin/needle. This is apparently modernist propoganda intended to denigrate the ways of knowing of an earlier time in the effort to demonstrate the superiority of "modern" ways of knowing, i.e., natural science.] -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Bell's Theorem The point here is that the debate between Einstein and Bohr over reality - i.e., whether indeed an independent, external reality exists apart from the observer ("Is the moon there when you're not looking?") - moved from a philosophical debate to a scientific one: with Bell's theorem, it became possible to test the two metaphysical assumptions, i.e., the Einsteinian assumption of a local reality (independent of the observer, etc.) vs. the Copenhagen Interpretation of q.m. (see p. 94) In particular, Bell's theorem demonstrates a contrast between the correlation to be found between measurements on twin particles: if local reality is correct, the correlation will lie between -2 and 2; if q.m. is correct, the correlation (e.g., for detectors at 45 degrees) = 2.83 These numbers mean, notice: ...the quantum world is more highly correlated than any world that depends on a local reality or locally operating hidden variables. (112) The Experiments: Briefly, the experimental work confirms the q.m. prediction, not the correlation predicted for local reality. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Implications: While contemporary physicists/scientists may wish to ignore the "metaphysical" questions and implications surrounding "nonlocality" as now demonstrated via Bell's theorem and the Aspect experiments - Peat suggests that this effort at ignorance is parallel to an earlier reponse, namely, the response to Newton's conception of gravity as "action at a distance." (126) Indeed, the demonstration of nonlocality is a fundamental paradigm shift out of Newtonian mechanics: ...physics had been wedded to locality, to systems that were well defined within their own particular regions of space and time, and to interactions that involved the transmissions of physical energy across space. The idea of nonlocality appears to deny this most basic fact of everyday experience, for it suggests that distant systems can be connected in a totally new way - a way in which distance no longer seems to matter. (127) Among the many implications which Peat discusses, let me stress those under the heading "A Connected Universe" (156ff.) Most generally, quantum mechanics appears to force us to recognize the limits of the "classical" Cartesian/Newtonian atomism and mechanistic picture of the world. While this picture works at a certain scale of reality ("between" the subatomic and the relativistic) - it is not an accurate account of all of reality, nor of "reality" at its most fundamental level. Rather - if q.m. is correct, "reality" is unitary and connected in ways that correlate nicely with, for example, the direct experiences of connectedness reported in all religious traditions (cf. Peat, 158f.) This wholeness and connectedness as a starting point (cf. Peat, 160) - over against the modern presumption of atomism and difference - further correlate with Platonic and Pauline conceptions of wholeness/health (i.e., of the body and psyche whose health consists in the harmonic working together of all the parts, as each part does its proper function in the right proportion to the other parts - a notion which also defines justice for Plato in the Republic, as it defines the harmony of the "body of Christ" for Paul [I Corinthians 11]). Finally, the implication Peat draws from David Bohm's notions of quantum potential and the implicate order - i.e., of "gentle action" at the "edges" of a system, in order to effect significant and dramatic changes at the "center" (cf. Peat, 160-164) - correlate nicely with a) especially Hindu, Buddhist, and Taoist ideas of "actionless action" (non-attachment to the +/- consequences of our acts, undertaken for their own sake, not for the sake of self, in the Bhagavad-Gita; wu-wei in Taoism; non-interference in Buddhist traditions), and b) notions of "self-emptying" (kenosis ) in especially Greek-Christian traditions (so Ellis). -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Project: we will use the week of Oct. 27-31 to "catch our breath" a bit - i.e., to review and synthesize, so as to construct a large picture of the history and philosophy of science we have examined so far. Possibilities: a) review class notes and web materials to focus on the role of mathematics in the history of philosophy/science, beginning with Thales and the PreSocratics, and focusing especially on the role of mathematics in Plato's theory of knowledge and metaphysics - a role that suggests the greater importance and reality of mathematics over our more direct experience of the "sensible" world. In particular, how does Plato's account of physics as, at best, "a likely story" (because its rootedness in the experience of shadows and the cave, as distinct from the truer and more real mathematical and ideal realities, prevents it from attaining the greater certainty and truth of mathematical and philosophical knowledge) compare with the projects of Copernicus and Kepler, whose religious (neopythagorean/neoplatonic) beliefs drove their development of new mathematical systems for "explaining" the universe? In particular, how does Plato's account of physics as, at best, "a likely story" (because its rootedness in the experience of shadows and the cave, as distinct from the truer and more real mathematical and ideal realities, prevents it from attaining the greater certainty and truth of mathematical and philosophical knowledge) compare with the Copenhagen Interpretation - in which the mathematical description of the photon, the electron, etc. as a "standing probability wave" is the final truth of things, and any description we may attempt to develop of quantum mechanical behavior using the terms and concepts developed in and appropriate to the macroatomic world of our experience (e.g., "wave," "particle," "spin," "velocity," "location," etc.) is only an approximation of such behaviors (indeed, approximations which are at best, incomplete and paradoxical as these macroatomic conceptions ultimately fail to accurately "picture" or capture the whole truth of quantum behaviors - a truth capturable only in the mathematics)? b) review the first two episodes of Stephen Hawking's Universe, as possible resources for teaching history and philosophy of science. i) How does the presentation of the "Galileo affair"in the video (episode one) compare with the account we have developed? What do the differences between the video account and our account suggest about the larger, "popular" understanding of the relation between religion and science? Given these differences, where might the "popular" understanding derive from? (That is, would the "popular" understanding, as stressing the conflict and opposition between religion and science, at least be consistent with (a) a Cartesian dualism in our epistemology - one that leads us to a forced choice between religion and science as modes of knowledge - a choice historically expressed in (b) the nineteenth century as positivism on the one hand and fundamentalism on the other hand? [Be sure to review the web documents on positivism and fundamentalism.]) ii) How does the presentation of the development of the Big Bang theory (episode two) suggest the complementary relationship between science and religion? How is this complementary relationship consistent with the various complementarities we have seen in (a) quantum mechanics, (b) the larger complementarities opened up again by quantum mechanics between physics and philosophy (especially epistemology) and religion, and (c) the complementarities between religion and philosophy/science we have seen in the history of philosophy/science? c) Review the two articles byHeisenberg (noted above) on the relationship between Descartes, Kant, and quantum mechanics. i) How does Heisenberg's view of especially the neokantian character of the Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum theory fit with the views we have seen expressed by Pine, Peat, and others? ii) What does Heisenberg's view suggest regarding the relationship between physics and philosophy (i.e., oppositional or complementary)? iii) How does the relationship between physics and philosophy suggested by Heisenberg compare with: (a) the positivist and fundamentalist assumptions regarding the relationships between science and philosophy and religion - and, more broadly, the relationships between science and philosophy and religion possible under a Cartesian epistemology and metaphysics? (b) the relationship between science, philosophy, and religion we have seen at work in the history of philosophy/science from Thales through Copernicus, Kepler, and Newton? {Back up to the TEXT, above} [4] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [5] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [6] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [7] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [8] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [9] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [10] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [11] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [12] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [13] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [14] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [15] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [16] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [17] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [18] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [19] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`0] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`1] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`2] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`3] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`4] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`5] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`6] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`7] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`8] {Back up to the TEXT, above} [`9] {Back up to the TEXT, above} -^_6

Parallel Worlds

See also: -[
Fut x Abs (time) --> timetravel, etc]- -[m-theory]- (in scientist) The idea of parallel worlds is that "next to" ours. This idea arises from several sources (see Quantum Reality ref above). Mainly, the idea is the concept of "parallel dimensions" that occupy the same space, only separated by a slight "twist"; eg, a phase difference, The concept of phase difference is derived from the fact that two waves (that might have the same characteristics) that start out at different times, may occupy the same "carrier" (space, wire, etc) and in some cases will NOT interact at all. A common example, is given by a "slinky" metal coil. If we stretch it out straight we can bunch up a bit of it and let that *compression* wave travel along the length of the slinky. We assume a zero-friction surface so that the slinky doesn't lose energy when it is moving. Oddly enough this (almost never observed or examined) property of the slinky is the primary property that allows it to "walk down stairs". Alternatively, we can take one end of the slinky that is stretched out and quickly move our hand perpendicular to the spot and back again. That is, if the slinky is streched out left to right, we move our hand forward backward -- moving our hand left-to-right produces the motion just previously discussed. This "sea wave" moion is completely independent (in an ideal case) of the first motion. In theory we can "superimpose" the two motions and neither will "be aware of" (interact) with the other. This is the same principle that allows multiple cable channels (about 200 or more) to be sent over just TWO wires without interfering with each other. Thus, the theory of parallel worlds that can in theory exist side-by-side with ours Note that there is no guarantee that these worlds would share anything in common with ours. For example, our "simple" 3-dimensional world might be parllel to a fractal universe with 2.717017107170... dimensions. Or more restrictedly, a parllel planet "earth" which is in fact a cube and has liquid helium for its oceans and gasseous iron for its atmosphere -- something which is totally impossible in our universe. MOre restrictedly, there might be an almost (or even actually exactly) similar earth. Regardless of whether we could "travel" (transition) to such a world, it might be possible to view such a world and/or contact or converse with it. And possibly it with us. We usally assume "isotropy" (pronunskiated: "eye saw truh pee") -- that is, "if we can see them, then they can see us" which means that the connections between the two worlds are "two way". This is not always the case, for example note the "Grand Canyon" glass tunnel that extends out over the edge of a cliff. You (not me) can walk along it, and at some point the floor is completely transparent glass. Now if instead of merely viewing this "different world" through the floor, you were suddenly transported 20 feet (7 metres) to the side. You would almost certainly fall. Similarly, we may (since ideas are not subject to the laws of physics or man) view things that would surely not be good for us. (This is not to say that things that we view might not be good for us; just look at most tv and films ;)

Quantum Thinking

Again this is just the sort of controversial thing that the iconosphere is all about.... So, what IS Quantum Thinking/Creativity/etc? First off we get several ideas from Physics: Relativity -- Uncle Al blew the lid off of the idea of *absolute* truths when he publisehd his two papers on relativity. What it sez is that there isn't a single ONE PERFECT frame of refernece for anything in the universe. One part of it does aways with the concept of absolute time as well; the physics works just as well if time was running backwards or forwards. His friend (and famous maths person) Kurt Goedel (that's G O-umlaut D E L) showed that in a universe where Einstein's equations are true, then time as we understand it may not even exist. (One of those possible universes is OUR universe -- usually refered to as "Reality Structure 3"). What did relativity do? In one imporant area of anthropology, it gave rise to the idea of "cultural relativity". that is, when we (we, adavanced cultured, civilised humans what with our cell-phones, mp3 players, hi-def tv's and Tom-Tom naviagated (Garmen ads are way better!) cars, etc) -- we consider ourselves soo superior to primitive natives, people in OTHER countries (cultural imperialism, provincial thinking, and generally acting like *really* twonky drongos and ubus). But, all humans are human and living in any society gives each of us/them equally deep and rich lives. And at what cost? We have hi-def, 2000 channel tv's -- but when was the last time you really saw a good story or a good piece of music that really moved you or made you laugh -- a lot of it is fluff. Quantum Theory -- At the atomic level you can't tell exactly where a thing is and how fast its moving at the same time. Further, you can't tell how much engergy it has in it, and during what period of time its got it (if at all). This (very) vague idea translates into the way that we actually think and perceive the world around us. That we are made up of billions of brain cells means that what-ever consciousness is, it's just a lump of green putty compared to what is possible. That is (analgously and someone mysteriously) speaking: If we can mould our mind (thoughts, emotions, and such) then we can perceive the world differently. QM also postulates that things are connected by "hidden variables" -- Einstein refused to accept this even though much of QM came from his own works in relativity; he and Niels Bohr (who proposed the "planetary model of the atom") used to debate about QM endlessly. QM also postulates that out of an infinite number of possiblities, the universe seems to settle down to just one (or a very small number) of states. Sometimes "available energy" is invovled, other times it's random (or looks random: Einstein sed "I do not think that God plays dice with the universe", but later Stephen Hawking sed: "Not only does God play dice with the universe, but he throws them where you can't see them" -- ie, into a black hole). -- more stuff to think about... So this is new? Naturally, people who practice meditation and thinking (almost an obsolte practice these days) have known this for years. Again with Kurt Goedel: He would spend most of his "thinking time" by walking around and just thinking. And for us (ahem) artist types, just going around and LOOKING at the world (visual), or LISTENING to the world (aural), etc. opens our minds. Part of this goes back to the old adage of "A mind is like a parachutte -- it works better when it's open" or Eistein's comment: "A mind that has been stretched by a new idea rarely returns to its original size". So, part of this is to find new ways to think about old things. One part of this is the creation of MAPPINGS from one or more things to one or more things. For example... monads -- one thought or idea; eg, an apple, a poem, a king (benovolent or tyrant?), dyads -- two things; eg, sweet & sour, male/female (what about male/female/nether??). triads -- three things; eg, red/green/blue --or-- red/yellow/blue; three movements of a concerto, acts of a play, etc tetrads -- the four-ness of things. penatds -- hexads / sexads septads / heptads ..... The useful part comes when we MAP things using one of the models (monads are pretty academic and linear) a dyad can be a list (a line again or not). We can make a dyad of opposites (we do it all the time); eg, A democrat is/stands for.... A republican is/stands for .... Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, etc. Triads are very usefull (and easy to do) One thing i'm working on is what i call a bi-tetrad (8-thing; there is an an idea in Budhism called "the 8-fold way")... and is directly related to the i-ching (usually pronounced ee-cheeng). The i-ching (or ee for short) is a way for a sentient being to explore down to the randomness of the thing called past/present/future and try to make a decsion that is in harmony with the time. As one of the tau's says if the sage is in harmony with the tau (and hence the normal universe), then the sage can not be harmed. Unfortunately as a skeptic, i am sorry to say, that i have yet to find a counter-example to this and therefore (as a rational reductionist) conclude (temporally/spatually) that there as yet is not counter-intuitive evidence to the contrary).

More on MAP's

MAP - Music Art Poetry MAC - Music Art Conversation SAM - Science Art Maths (Lilian Lieber came up with this one about 50 years ago, she was one of Einstein's students. Her two main books for lay readers are called -- "The Education of T.C. Mits" (TC Mits is "The Celebrated Man In The Street) and "The Einstein Theory of Relativity". The idea of a MAP (and these border on the non-connectivity of Quantum Mechanics with possibly 0 to 1 elements of that as well as 0 to 1 elements of Fractals) of diferent things and see if this will stimulate new thinking about old things. Think of it as if you were translating from one language to another (tips towel to Robert Nelsen) -- if we do a literal translation, then we gain nothing. "Twas brilig and the slity toves did mome outrath the grabe" sed Lewis Carrol, but that means nothing in any other language unless you translate the flavour or colour of the words. Thus, MAP's (even if they are not "just" 3 dimensions) are meant to create pathways to re-presenting, re-viewing, and re-understanding -- and hopefully extending ideas, things, etc. How would you translate a piece of music into words -- imaginary words or real. You could chose a map like this: Music Visual Words As you listen to the music, you write VISUAL WORDS describing it -- possibly ignoring (or not) sounds that are generated. For example, if we took Chopin's Piano Concerto #2 and translated this into "A Day in the Life of Paris, France", we might begin by describing the sun rise, the streets, the light glinting in among the buildings, etc. -[
"Paris"]- (dup'd from mac-2001.com - extinct) Think what this MAP (here MVW) would mean to a blind person or a person who was deaf. Say, we take the idea of traveling through the solar system and the way that comets move. We might imagine ourselves as the comet and flying along the path it takes. Haley's comet takes only 75 years to circle the sun and has been doing so for several thousand years (give or take). Pluto and Charon (the first Plutons of Sol) take some 250 years! That means Haley's comet circles almost 4 times faster. But, then think about Mercury (88 days per "year") means about 310 revolutions per just one Haley's comet revolution. Translate that via: Astronomy Haley's Comet Danse or Comet Danse Sculpture or Comet Dinosars dansing music What role would each thing play in making the mundane idea that Haley's comet takes 75 years into some interesting (and clearly different) TRANSLATION? Once you start playing with triads, you can't stop. Now, whether they generate USEFUL things or not remains to be seen. An example of a very famouse triad came from when the Chemist August Keukule' was trying to figure out the structure of Benzene (which has only 6 carbons and 6 hydrogens -- each carbon "wants" to link to 4 other atoms, and each hydrogen "wants" to link (bond) to only one other atom). As the story goes, he fell asleep and in his dream the atoms did a danse. So, out came the triad: Benzene Danse ? What finally happened is that the atoms formed a cirlce and lo! Benzene Danse Circle (ie, a non-line, a 2-dimensional shape) And so, each carbon bonds two times with its neighboring carbon going around one way, one one time to its neighboring cargon going around the other way, one one time with its own hydrongen: H H H H H H | | | | | | -C=C-C=C-C=C- This is what couldn't be explained. So, when the carbons on each end "wrap around" and make a hexagon (bee-hive shape!) the molecule is stable. This dream led to a major break thru in chemistry, and when QM was discovered some 20 years, later, even the humble benzene molecule went thru a revolution -- resonance bonds, hybrid bonds, and much more. (This scene is re-enacted in the XTAL Productions release of "Molecules are Forever" which has (as yet of this writing) not been produced as such as art as actual (reified). Imagine all of the possiblities with just changing one variable, or by collapsing two of the variables; eg, when we talked about Haley's comet we started with Astrongomy, Comet, ? and ended up with Comet, Danse, Sculpture -- and beyond. Astronomy, A certain woman's plusars of a martian nature, and a bell the particular bell beomces x 2 - 4 pi / h squared and we get (with a bit of bistro maths), and retaining the sub space originals: Martians x ( music ^ music of the spheres) x other people whose (Joslyn Bell) Johanes Kepler names start with a "j" (cook this over a quantum / fractal space, stir in liberal amounts of jazz, and it can "easily be shown that" Stanislov Lem's hyper robot becomes a model for galactic civilisations in general; providing of oourse that each "component" can stave off its need for unlimited rice pudding. and what of twent sided dice?

The Reflective and Projective

As the philsopher/scientist Sydney J. Harris sez: "The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows." Thus, we start with the "us" (or the "I") and work outward -- from mirrors into windows. from the self into the projection of the self out into the universe (not just the universe "of discourse" that Einstein refered to, but other possible universes -- like Goedel was talking aobut). But, we can reverse the process and go from the universe contemplating itself (the mirror turned outward towards the universe) and then THAT mirror becoming a window thru which the univese sees us. But, then the universe might be seeing ants building a mound, or the way that the winds blowing for the last 15_000 years (or more) haven't really changed the way that the sand dunes in the Sahara Desert are shaped or where they are -- or do they? When we start "thinking like the universe", then we're no longer bound to the mere "3 score and ten" years that humans seem doomed to (liberated? - depends on your point of view again) . Imagine universes beyond the (supposed) mere 20 billion (20 thousand million) years. Think in terms of not just possible universes and times, but impossible ones that we can only imagine. Think in terms of not just PHYSICAL time (what-ever THAT is!), but in terms of MATHEMATICAL (or non-mathematical) time. A billion years!!!???? Try thinking of a google of years: 1 year 1 10 years 10 100 years 100 thousand 1000 million 1_000_000 billion 1_000_000 (giga) trillion 1_000_000_000 (tera) quadrillion 1_000_000_000_000_000 (peta) quintillion 1_000_000_000_000_000_000 (exa) see also: http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/0,,sid9_gci499008,00.html a google: 10_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000_000 which is 10^100 power in scientific notation That number is so large that if the entire known universe was filled with the smallest possible particles then it would still only be about half that number (actually a google is a lot larger than that - but that's another story). And you thought the national debt was large! So, think! (but use only as directed and for peace: Please!)

Spirituality and it's "opposites">

In this section: {
Spirituality vs Religion} {Religion battles against Science} {coda: Religion takes on the "New Page"}

Opposites: Spirituality vs Religion

See also: {
Life, Death, Transcendence and other Illusions} (above) {Extremities/Boundaries: Religions} (fanatacism) This section explores spirituality from a religious POV (point of view). Martin Luther: A person doesn't need the Pope to find slavation, etc.

Religion battles Against Science

So: It must be: Religion vs. Science. The oddest thing about this "debate" is that both sides are using exactly the SAME absolutist, western-reductionist methods and philosophies. Mainly: Something can only be ONE WAY! For brevity's sake, we examine only a few of the "moot" points. Note that the word "moot" originally mean "debatable", it has somehow come to mean "settled".

Religion vs The Big Bang

One of the hard and fast rules science is that of "repeatability". If something can be repeated then it CAN'T be science. The conservative religious person is quick to point out that since the Big Bang occured only once, then it can't be science. Most people that think thusly, that this goes back to God creating the world according to Genesis.

coda: Religion takes on the "New Age"

Is spirituality (and new-age thinking) working against religion? Is religion evil? What about Satanism? So is science necessarily opposed to spirituality? So, is religion evil? What about Satanism? For every manner of thinking, you probably can find some person who ferverantly believes it to be THE WAY. As a friend of mine says about religion: I don't care what you believe. Nuts, is nuts. Possibly an extreme way of thinking. (Hmm, what if we consider the person who believes such a thing, are they nuts too?) First to deal with the satanists. There are of course people who perform sacrifices (not only of animals, but people) they've been doing that for centuries. But, of course The Church (read that as either the Holy Roman Catholic Church or one of the various purist religions (take your pick from the "big three" or choose your own) all have to have the LAST WORD. (If they didn't have THE last word, then they wouldn't be THE CHURCH -- it's sort of a tautology, don't yuh see?). Thus, gothics (vampire "cults", etc -- who is in power gets to decide what is and is not a cult; so, there!), satanists (either "dark power worshipers", or some other sub-group), and of course wicians, gaists, and all of those "not properly registered" religions, er ah, CULTS they are right out! You see the probelm i hope. We all interpret the world not only thru what we experience and what we art taught, but by what we believe and (hopefully) that process of believing (and its "evil" twin sister understanding) are an EVOLVING process. Of course, some people don't want to evolve, they feel a lot more comfortable with someone (a fuher? a church elder? a cult leader? a scientist? a ....?) telling them what to do, what to think (mainly not to think, leave the thinking to US), etc. So, basically you have people who see life as destination of having things (even if those things are non-material but of a divinely inspired spiritual kind of warm, fuzzy blanket) --and-- people who see life as a journey and we're all just mostly in the dark. And of course people are then motivated to either do things (things that might be rash, but seem justified on a "higher" plane of existence), and others who think that to do the least harm (to the least of anything) is the best way. We have all (mostly all of us who want to see) seen the pictures of the monks who spend their entire lives "singing" people into the next stage of existence -- towards nirvanah. As to science. For many science (again with all of its comforting and PROVEABLE truths) is a religion. A poet friend of mine once penned: Some say that that the scientists will save Man, Some say that only God can save Man. But, in the end only men can save Man. I would add womyn type folk as well. And of course point out that "and a child shall lead them" as a symbolic parable. And of course add, and probablly a farily balanced thinking/feeling person as well. I would be tempted to add: And of course with the help of a "certain" duck. (but that would just be the absurdist in me). Finally, there are many ways to spirituality (as with other aspects of "being"). Some believe that cofified set of rules (be it religion, science or something else) is the way, others believe it to be a personal journey (or a group journey) that either has no beginning or end, or is in all points of fact an illusion to begin with. Me? I say: Enjoy life, try to do the least harm, help if you can. Enjoy the ride; just look at for that last step: It's a doozy!

Spirituality: Extremities and Boundaries

Extremities/Boundaries: Religion

See also: {
Life, Death, Transcendence and other Illusions} (above) {Spirituality vs Religion} (above) As pointed out previously (see above link), one must distinguish between the various *extents* of religion. This section deals witht the more extreme forms commonly known as "fanaticism". Oddly enough such individuals recognise this pheomenon in others (eg, "David Karesh", "Mohammid Whahib", etc), but tend to not recognise the similar natures in their own structures. Thus, they have an intellectual blind-spot -- actually a spiritual blind-spot. In keeping with such absolutist thinking, they think that what they have is the ONE TRUE spirituality, and that all other forms of (not nust spirituality) are false. "[Concerning 'skepticism'], ... The Jews are pretty tollerant, the Christians a bit less so, but the Muslims: They cut off your head!" -- a not-so devout Arab. love as hate salvation as condemnation knowledge as judgement Massada/Crusade/Jihad -- genocide via belief "Organisation" vs "Chaos" chruch vs free-thought/spirituality Rejection of psychic powers Rejection of materialism (also sort of: Rejection of reductionism)