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  • Writer's pictureDan Thompson

Why Quantum Mechanics isn’t Weird (closer to a straight answer, but not quite)

Updated: May 14, 2023

In clarification to the last post, I am writing an addendum.

The reason I said Quantum Mechanics isn’t weird is because it is the basis of our reality and also because the theory itself is very successful. So successful that those who use it don’t even need to know how it works, however, to really explore and use it to its full potential (to travel through vast distances of space and even time) we need to understand it fully (which includes its relationship with gravity).

It is also important to realize that in order to understand that, we have to understand ourselves. This is why mystery schools such as the neoplatonists and the alchemists studied themselves as thoroughly as they studied their procedures, and only then did they get the results they were after (sometimes in ways they were not expecting).

Nature does not have all the answers we want though, because it is a statistical / probabilistic system. The world is interactive and we are participants, this is a nod to John Wheeler, the ‘It from Bit’ guy.

Observation + interaction = experience. Experience + measurement = answer (observation) and we do it all over again… but if we had a different experience we would have gotten a different answer.

An answer is only as good as the information contained in the question (but it depends who you ask). Energy is required to get information; the more energy, the more information (currently CERN is the largest user of energy in the world). I use this information to get more information with the information supplying the energy for the transfer.

There are two ways of looking at the quantum experiment; either as collapsing the wave-function, or getting information. Collapsing the wave-function has to do with the system and manipulating nature into giving us an answer, getting information is more about experience, letting nature manipulate us. This can be imagined as a flow of information up and down. Down from the observer to the system; as a measurement (objective), or up, from the system to the observer; as an experience (subjective).

If the universe really is one thing and we are part of it, then it manipulates us, not the other way around. Consciousness is our interface with the larger consciousness system. We are agents for consciousness which in turn organizes all the agents for the cosmos, to keep the cycles in motion. Or in other words, we are spiritual (conscious) beings, having a physical experience. There is thus a directness about consciousness, or about mind (our little slice of consciousness). That’s what it does. Its primary function. It is the only thing that has this kind of directness towards something outside itself because it is the only way that we can ever even experience anything.

Already there is some kind of communication going on without us even knowing it. A question and answer that goes below the level of awareness (to Being itself?) and the way we do this is by letting the things speak for themselves. Meeting them on the boundary of the phenomenological world, to commune and maybe even see them for what they are, as being, but only when we bracket them at the same time that we bracket ourselves, co-existing with them as fellow observers, constituting them as they constitute us.

Experience and consciousness are very closely allied and both are related to Being in that they are both ontological primitives, which is the necessity for having any kind of experience at all. Being, according to the neoplatonists was beyond mind, even beyond Mind (with a capital M), it was unknowable, therefore Being can be thought of as the domain of quantum mechanics, where universe is when no one’s looking.

Being is neither subjective nor objective, it is the place where surface and essence meet, what in the previous essay we called the boundary upon which the phenomenal world appears; ‘Not that which the eye sees, but whereby the eye can see’ (see: the Kena Upanishad), the same with all the rest of the senses too. The senses, in Kastrup’s terminology, are defined as ‘contact points’ with the rest of reality that we are not perceiving at the moment, until we do. It is when we become aware of the outside world that information is exchanged, observations are made, experiences are had.

If there is any meaning to life and the universe, it would be getting information, adding to the body of knowledge, or doing the Great Work. The main objectives in each of the three domains of knowledge: science, philosophy and the mystery tradition.

For more information I recommend Donald Hoffman’s Conscious Realism theory of everything as well as Chris Fields’ talks via the SAND (Science and Non-Duality) talks on Youtube.

I include it here for your edification and as an expedient to comprehending these ideas.

Thanks for reading.

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