Science and Religion—Maybe Mix in a Little?

Is it a coincidence that the golden age of physics had this common thread?

Has any religious doctrine ever supplanted a scientific discovery? I used to answer that question with an emphatic no, but I may have been wrong about that. It is highly likely that Newtonian physics was supplanted by the Upanishads—the ideas from Hindu philosophy called quantum mechanics.

What’s different about the Upanishad -vs- say, Christianity, is the Upanishad can be made into math by the most skilled of all scientific minds. It can be tested, and it can be fit into what we know about the nature of duality, consciousness, mind, and matter.

Is it mere coincidence that physics can be so mystical in similarity, that uncertainty is certain, and that through observation we find that waves become particles (matter) and that the “real world” is illusory (not what it appears to be) upon our observation of them?

“The Upanishads describe how reality arises out of consciousness. But consciousness cannot be found inside our bodies as a substance or an organ.” That trying to see the Self (Brahman) with the same electrons and photons as It, the projector only records interference because me are mixing waves of the same substance. What is sought is the seeker—the seeker is the sought.

“Since we haven’t been able to locate or explain this interaction, we’re left with a deceptively simple choice: either consciousness or reality doesn’t exist”—Erwin Schrödinger

But I despise the two choice debate. And as we see psychologically, consciously, physiologically, and every where in between, that consciousness is reality. There is no such thing as experiencing a non-experience. It’s all one thing. Everything is waves—some long and some short. Some last a lifetime while others millennia, but nothing is permanent —so no thing is real but one thing.

Realizing this has boosted physics out of the arena and into space.

On the other hand, the Upanishads uphold an idealist view – that consciousness exists by itself, and that the physical world depends on it. There is no objective reality that exists independently of the observer. Schrödinger supported this view and lamented the aversion for it: “it must be said that to Western thought this doctrine has little appeal, it is unpalatable, it is dubbed fantastic, unscientific. Well, so it is because our science – Greek science – is based on objectivation, whereby it has cut itself off from an adequate understanding of the subject of cognisance, of the mind

Curious to know what other physicists of the era were influenced by the upanishads?

Werner Heisenberg, Carl Sagan, Robert Oppenheimer, Erwin Schrödinger, Niels Bohr, Nikola Tesla…

The golden age of physics and invention had a common thread that is wont to ignore (customary). The Upanishads and Indian philosophies date back about 5000, years. Their rebirth was witnessed at the turn of the 20th century.

I do believe that this is precisely the point where our present way of thinking does need to be amended, perhaps by a bit of blood-transfusion from Eastern thought”—Erwin Schrödinger

Beginning the Finishing

Author: jim-

One minute info blogs breaking the faith trap.

82 thoughts on “Science and Religion—Maybe Mix in a Little?”

  1. I think organizations, religious or even atheistic, take credit for brilliant people. If you are a religious group and you have a brilliant individual who makes discoveries then your group takes the credit. The same goes for organizations that are secular. Edison grouped up people to do creative discovery and then took the credit under his corporation.

    What we really have is a very small pool of highly exotic thinkers who fuel discovery on a world-changing scale. A pool of people that can’t be matched by any group that claims them.

    Just saying

    Like

    1. Hinduism never claimed them. They all claimed it and were inspired to fuel generations with technological advance. Eastern philosophy is ripe with reference to the ultimate reality which is the ground being of physical exploration in science and physics.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That must be why the East is rife with Nobel laureates advancing our understanding of and granting insight into reality. Just the applied technological advancements alone… oh, wait…

        Like

        1. Idk, maybe it would be worth a shot. They have studied monks with the eeg and found thoughts arise in their brains up to ten seconds before they are aware of them. That maybe thoughts don’t come from in the brain at all.
          I know, it’s just the colloidal minerals and random luck consciousness model doesn’t really fit with the way the world is. Maybe it’s the other way around all together.

          Like

            1. It appears that is what happened when those mentioned physicists, applied that philosophy to the science. Don’t be afraid to give credit where it is due. But I get it. Technology in an extension of human consciousness, and human consciousness is an extension of minerals, crystals, and some pools of soup.
              The cold, dead universe model is ripe fo put such materialistic focus to good use. No doubt that was a powerful move to manipulate the natural world into polymers, circuitry and alloys. But if we want to discover the real beginning of it all, I’d be surprised as hell if it’s not done by turning the instruments on to ourselves.

              Like

            2. You seem convinced quantum mechanics derived from eastern philosophy. It didn’t. It was a work in progress by many, many European physicists over many decades involving all kinds of physics and it came about by collaboration. It was a mathematical approach (I mean, that’s the language of physics and not word games asking about the sound of one hand clapping) to explain specifically the energy quanta of the double slit experiment – where matter can display both classical wave AND classical particle physics. That shouldn’t happen if the standard model was complete. It did happen and could be repeated. So the standard model was missing something. Quantum physics (just look at the name itself: the physics of quantity) was then developed where calculating probability for that energy quanta was the core idea to be the bridge between these incompatible Newtonian description called The Standard Model – ie classical physics – and the observed effect through these slits of a base unit of the energy quanta, a base unit of energy that we now call a ‘photon’. Insight into using a wave function to describe this probability through time may very well have been derived from some Eastern notion in the same way Watson (or Kekule for the benzine ring) dreamed of the mythological Ouroboros – the snake devouring itself which is over many temples in the Far East as it is also found in ancient Egypt hieroglyphs and writings in Greek and even throughout Norse mythology (that later morphed into dragons). That doesn’t make mythology responsible for understanding DNA or the benzine ring any more than Eastern thought was the source for quantum physics.

              Liked by 2 people

            3. Thanks for the considerate reply. No I am not convinced of anything. I do have a lot of thoughts that I share here but that doesn’t make me believe them. Most of them happen when I wake up in the morning, although I rarely dream or remember them. I do put some ideas to work before I lie down.
              One thing I have found true for myself, pretty much across the board, when I am given two choices it makes me feel the answer is in between, or somewhere else all together.
              All of the explanations of purely mechanical processes of nature make me feel uneasy about this slam dunk reality when nothing still is as it seems to be. Fully explaining a blade of grass could fill a library. I’m as equally wary of religion. But people somehow make all this craziness work and I love it. Each of us have a very human role to play. It’s only when we analyze it does it become a problem. People are awesome outside there dogmas.

              Liked by 1 person

            4. Well, explanations of purely mechanical processes of nature may make us feel uncomfortable but that seems to be the case. This is really what is at issue in things like free will vs automaton and a host of other disturbing questions regarding just how much freedom or range of probability there actually can be. This is why a good grasp on emergent properties helps demonstrate a vast amount of possibilities even from a mechanistic process; creation is ongoing and understandably so but it seems to be the case that the foundation rests wholly on physical and material and chemical mechanisms, processes, and forces. This is why Hawkings insisted that the basic building block of everything – everything! – was gravity.

              Liked by 2 people

            5. Can we truly explain consciousness out of geology, yet deny that same geology (and its chemistry) is part of conscious, how could that be? If we can use this to explain that, we should as easily be able to describe that with this. That we can identify this mind with those elements, yet deny those elements are part of mind? Reason tells me that one cannot exist without the other. It’s tricky, and would require an explanation 😁

              Liked by 1 person

            6. In a way, yes. And that way is through emergent properties. Birds and fish don’t do flocking or schooling behaviour as part of flying and swimming muscle development; these are emergent properties of consciousness. How can this behaviour be divorced from feathers and scales? Well, because over time neurology is a product of biology. And the natural unguided mechanism of evolution favours neurology that follows a very simple rule: local units obeying local rules. By this, I mean the genes that express in neurology that favour keeping a neighbour close by reproduces more offspring… probably because this local rule reduces predation. The local rule becomes a wider rule through inheritance when viewed a s a community behaviour and creates the illusion we see of agency. When one views a murmuration of birds, that flock looks like a noun, looks like one thing with a life of its own with discrete borders and we forget it’s made up of single birds following a simple rule. So we import some notion of a exterior ‘force’ acting on the birds to ‘create’ a mumuring flock and then use the flock as evidence for this separate and ‘hidden’ agency directing the birds to behave this way!

              Our own neurology that presents as our minds (or ‘consciousness’) is just as much a compilation of our neurological local units just as much obeying local rules as congregating fish or birds. This congregation creates the illusion of self-organizing unity with discrete borders, as if our consciousness were a single entity, a singular noun, a singular ‘thing’ directed by a ‘hidden’ agency, an overseeing agency, we call god. And then we use this singular notion of ‘consciousness’ as if evidence for god!

              So to suggest constituent particles like those from geology must be present in the emergent properties for there to be a connection misses the point of what constitutes an emergent property! Yes, the geology is present ion the biology (that’s why we need an ongoing supply of rock in the form of minerals for our physical health) but not transported into the emergent property. The emergent property needs the biology as its foundation from which it comes, so it still needs the geology so to speak. But the emergent property – entirely local units obeying local rules that comes from the physical and chemical inheritance of the evolutionary material mechanism – can appear far more sophisticated and complex than its constituent parts and this is furthered when we know certain emergent properties – like ‘consciousness’ – give birth to even more emergent properties – like mathematical language. And so on.

              So that’s why I say an understanding of emergent properties is key to understanding how consciousness arises and how it presents. And this is why I say it seems to be entirely a natural unguided material process.

              Liked by 3 people

  2. Are you familiar with Buddhism at all? I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on Yogacara and the prajnaparamita sutras such as the heart sutra and diamond sutra.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am only slightly familiar with the tenets of Buddhism. I decided a few years ago to not seek out any doctrine, philosophy, or dogmas of any kind for the simple reason that I wanted to see what I could observe on my own. It’s too easy to be fooled by expert opinions and carefully worded persuasive arguments for any religion, and even atheism for that matter.
      You are welcome to post whatever ideas you have on the subject and I’ll think about them. I’ll typically look at an idea first without going in to all the details, and let it work in my brain a few days and form my own thoughts on the subject.
      Thanks for stopping by.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Religion and science do (loosely) have a common thread, in that they both have belief systems derived from observations, but that is where the similarities end for me. Religious beliefs don’t tend to take into account new knowledge that arises, and instead they look for new ways to justify said belief. In science however, theories and beliefs get shut down all the time, even from the best of scientists, and this is because science is willing to accept new knowledge and continually improve on our understanding of the world, which includes “consciousness”.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I think science and change fits fine everywhere but the Hebrew religions. That their practices could be explained by science would be a welcome thread to the whole puzzle. But really, if we figured it all out it would be time for a reset as the game would be boring.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Liberated, you say, “Religion and science do (loosely) have a common thread, in that they both have belief systems derived from observations…”

      It is very unfortunate that word ‘belief’ makes it seem like it has one meaning here. But it doesn’t and this makes ALL the difference.

      Belief in the religious context is based on trust or confidence derived directly from a faith-based claim. Such a claim has zero evidence from reality to support it but is (almost always) imposed on reality as if true. The belief aspect is empowered by assuming the claim is true. It’s called an a priori position, the belief precedes and produces justification for the claim.

      In stark contrast, belief in the scientific sense is based on likelihood that then collects evidence and grants some measure of weighted confidence to claim. This is opposite to the religious method of informing a ‘belief’ in that scientific beliefs are extracted from reality to create the ‘belief’. It’s a method diametrically opposite to the religious method. The belief aspect is empowered by compelling evidence that promotes likelihood that the claim is probably true, that it seems to be the case. It’s called an a posterior position, an adduced (not DEduced) method.

      Same word but night and day in meaning. These two methods are incompatible even if the same claim is believed.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I agree completely with what you’re saying here, but I also think you are getting a little bogged down with semantics here on the word ‘belief’, perhaps I should’ve used a different word to make my point.

        My point was that most religions came from a point in time where we had very limited understanding of how our world works from a scientific point of view, so when we observed things, we sometimes used religion to try and explain it. Now we (should) know better, and can use the scientific method to guide us when it comes to making observations. Science is OK with being wrong sometimes, and continually improves because of it, whereas religion doesn’t. I am not saying that science and religion are compatible for a second.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I know it sounds pedantic to harp on the word, but we keep coming across this trope that both science and religion are belief systems and therefore two sides of the same coin and therefore compatible. This notion couldn’t be more wrong because they are two different coins altogether! They are two coins because they represent two methods to inform a belief and so are in fact opposite approaches – one from assumption and one from evidence and so, as you say, they are not compatible for a second even if both agree on some claim. So this trope of similarity and compatibility between the two – because, hey, they share this term ‘belief’ – needs to be challenged every single time it appears because it’s wrong and continues to cause harm to real people in real life when acted upon as if true. Sorry for appearing bogged down on semantics but I think it’s important for clarity’s sake.

          Liked by 2 people

  4. It is impossible for a tree to even be where no one can hear it fall. In that place would it reflect light? Would it’s bark be rough? Would it’s xylem stil xy and floem stil flo? When I imagined that tree, I also heard it fall. I heard the crack and the thump before I could put a stop to my willful imagination.

    The tree that falls in the unknown wood, with no ear to hear it, makes a sound because there is a mind to imagine that it did. Sound is a product of the mind. All senses are products of the mind, not material. “Something” exists because it is perceived, by a mind. Being without mind is impossible. Back at the falling tree. Ok then, if not a sound will it make a vibration? No. Because you only imagine that it does. If there is no one to think it, to imagine it then it is naught. But I cannot imagine not being, so in my imagination I hear the tree and I say, “yes! the tree makes a sound.” But I can only say that because I was there when it happened through imagination so that now the nobody there to hear it part is ruined. My faith in the sound of an imaginary tree falling in a forest is such pure make-believe. I kind of like it!

    (I think a volcano exploding would be a better subject just because a tree itself is somewhat sentient. Now I’ve really stepped in it for even the volcano has being and so does the magma. Science is good but thank god for poetry! Imagine a scientific world without art!)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh please, give the Christian morality nonsense a break, will ya? Do you really believe you have to have religion to be moral? What about amoral Christians? Morality & ethics precede religion, they don’t come out of it. I would argue that the irreligious (if you will) are infinitely more “moral” than the religious simply because they choose to be moral out of an imbedded desire to be or do good, not because they’re afraid that the invisible man in the sky is going to put them in an unquenchable fire forever. That’s morality by duress, not “goodness” per se.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It certainly feels real until you consider quantum physics, philosophy, and various eastern religions. I can prove I don’t exist just as easily as I do.

      Like

  6. I find people saying they are no longer Christian because they learned science as odd as saying they are no longer Christian because they learned auto mechanics.

    Christianity is not concerned with science or auto mechanics. It is concerned with how we should live our lives – morality. So rather than asking if Christianity changed science you should ask has Christianity changed morality. And certainly it has. Those who doubt may want read the atheist author Tom Holland’s book “Dominion: How the Christian Revolution Remade the World”

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I believe Christ- the words are written by men so how can my limitedness know infinity? He’s the alpha and omega.
    Yes, I believe Christ is one with his Father. I believe the Bible is from God THROUGH men and Christ is God WITH men.

    I’m not a “traditional evangelical” because the creeds are written by men too. God desires personal relationship- ‘mercy, and not sacrifice.’
    My home is in Maine and my home church in Florida for now because they’re my family.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. Born into a certain lair, depending on to who from where, was raised into a strict belief, that if well followed would cause relief. A way of life so grand it’s said, to have raised up living from the dead, and if believed with all my heart, life would light the often dark.
Applied my self into the way, paid my tithes and learned to pray, read the book and proved all things, and stayed high in religions rings, then somehow many years had past, and things weren’t adding up so fast.
Some doubts were hushed and hard to say, was I the lone who felt this way? When I would list but a concern, read more scripture you will learn, apply your faith and don’t surrender, hope is where the life will render.
And so It was, I began again.
Doubling down I did my best, and to the lord I took a test, to verify most carefully, his book of words and then I’d see, but by and by the search from me, had eyes that crossed with dotted tees, and woeful were the histories. I read and pondered every verse, the lord it seemed he was a curse, to opened eyes on every verse, things are not what they seemed.
And so I prayed
In earnest gave I the lord my plea, invested years in him you see, certain that a faithful soul, could hear his word if truth be told. Wanting to believe the words, that marked the pages so absurd, to say I needed little reason, but just one would do.
Retiring to a quiet thicket, the lords voice came by sound of crickets.
It all unraveled very fast, not a thing or two would come to pass, as soon as opened eyes could see, deceived by friends and trusted creeds, that one who thought as smart as me, could fall into a trap so deep, set by ones who cared for me. If only just one part was right, I could continue in the fight, but no god hears the words you say, but alas your life is trapped by faith.
”The key to understanding the mysteries is unbelief”



          Liked by 2 people

          1. Jim- excellent verse from the gut, soaring, searing- even seeing. What goes around comes around. I came around almost 8 years ago.
            I believe I hear you- my life is similar- I cut and lived a life of unbelief. ‘A thing is only true until it isn’t.’
            There’s so much unknown that I only want to know Christ- ‘He has the words of eternal life.’

            Like

  8. I’m still a great proponent of the idea that, if you throw enough horseshit at the barn, sooner or later, some of it will stick – but it’s still horseshit. There have been thousands – tens – hundreds – of thousands of weird-ass religious ideas, proposals and theories advanced. That one of them finally proved (somewhat) correct is not revelation, but inevitable coincidence.
    Matt Dillahunty says that the time to believe something, is when there is evidence, and evidence is provided by science. They may have been right, but they were right for the wrong reasons. This seems much like Christians observing something, and going back through the Bible to find some vague passage that proves a prophesy.
    Still, an interesting concept. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s a good point. I don’t throw things out here because I believe them, but because I rely on some of you who think differently and more critically than I who was raised in the confines of religion. I don’t always see the whole picture, and even though I may like an idea, doesn’t mean I believe it.
      I do think we are automatically discounting ideas before we have a chance to see it may inspire some sort of discovery. These guys weren’t afraid of that, but since that time science has become very careful in its verbiage to avoid the mere sound of mysticism. Thanks buddy.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. This post of Jim’s, about the Hindu Upanishads. I was being my usual snarky, sarcastic self. In no way did I mean to imply that their beliefs and claims held any validity. One particular group of Neolithic Lotus-Eaters, out of myriads of others, felt that reality depends on randomness, and quantum-type fluctuations. Modern day physics is finding that the existence of the universe may depend on randomness and quantum fluctuations. There is no way to prove that one led to the other.

        It’s like the stopped clock, that’s right twice a day. Actually, it’s more like someone fired a shotgun at a wall, leaving fifteen or twenty buckshot holes in it. Five years later, someone comes along, paints a target around one of them, and declares, ‘See! They got a bull’s-eye!’

        Liked by 1 person

        1. For the sake of pure philosophical meanderings I do think the Buddhist and Hindus has a lot of time to hone what is not. By deduction there is only one thing left and it can’t be discovered. Like an eye trying to see itself. Like tildeb said, right for the wrong reasons?

          Liked by 1 person

  9. On a related note, the way many people describe evolutionary theory often includes elements of religious language; orientation metaphors loaded with value judgements such as ‘higher forms of life,’ and any expression of unilineal evolution necessarily entails a kind of design. I don’t know if this takes the narratives all the way to religion, but at least some people seem to believe these unscientific themes literally. Even in the average unbeliever, you can often find a certain tension between a raw scientific account of natural selection and the language people outside of science commonly use to talk about evolution.

    Like

    1. If you push any philosophy far enough, beyond the accepted schools of thought, one begins to sound like the other. I think part of the kickback with this idea is definitions. We’ve been conditioned to think of the god of Abraham, the monarchial boss. To the Hindu that there is nothing that is not god. It’s all one thing with many apertures, including you sharing in one mind. A single, living organism you’d be hard pressed to claim separation from that even as a scientist.
      On a side note, there are no private thoughts. Everything written or displayed in any form is simply a piece of all current thought. That’s how the philologist knows when and where you lived, no matter how long ago.

      Like

  10. I wrote, ” My ‘consciousness’ does not alter this fact. It does create the process. It does not command the process. It is not separate from the process.” That should read, ” My ‘consciousness’ does not alter this fact. It does NOT create the process. It does not command the process. It is not separate from the process.” Sorry for the omission.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. yes! the great mystics around the world wo dedicated their lives to the mystery of life and death, have LONG ago realized that consciousness is the source of matter, not the other way around. and this consciousness is not a product or result, it is the very basis of all experience, life and death. this knowledge is contained in sacred texts of Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Cabalah, Sufism and many others, i’m certain.

    the fact that we, in our age, rely only on the five senses to experience and understand reality, i’m sorry to say, but makes us much more limited than we can even begin to imagine.

    we are very much like a bird in an open cage. and instead of opening our wings and taking to the skies, which is our destiny, we cling to our cage and ask for ‘evidence’ that we are birds. and endlessly measure, analyze and collect data within our cage, and are gloriously satisfied with those puny results.
    instead of investigating and reading those who have become that, we place Doubt on the throne and therefore remain ignorant.

    we are all christs in the making. but consciousness must come to the fore. it’s called “awakening to our true nature.”

    excellent Boss!👍

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Great comment. It is just too easy to criticize things we know nothing about. That these innovators got inspiration that turned science on its ear… is a telling tale.
      On another note, Schrödinger himself was troubled by this process because of his roots. He said he struggled to trade a philosophy that sounded good, but didn’t work, for one that didn’t sound good to his western influences, that did work. It’s a complete 180 in thought for most of us.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Nobody ‘brings’ a telephone pole into ‘being’ to wrap their car around. Nobody ‘brings’ a virus into ‘being’ to turn organs into mush. Nobody ‘brings’ hurricanes into ‘being’ to smash houses. The very idea of using ‘consciousness’ to bring reality into ‘being’ – to make room for Oogity Boogity to appear rational and insightful – is a special kind of lunacy I think that can operate only with an exceptionally large degree of hubris and gullible belief combined with an colossal arrogance needed to dismiss the vast library of knowledge about an independent reality we have earned and must use each and every day to negotiate our environments successfully. I sincerely do not understand why people keep going down this path of denying reality it’s proper role of arbitrating our claims about it. The claim that consciousness creates reality can be tested immediately and found to be without any knowledge merit: just run one’s head into a wall and see if consciousness can eliminate the impact.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Does reality create consciousness then? The mixture of hot gas, collisions and time just spring up and get on with discovering how it happened?
      Schrödinger couldn’t quite wrap his head around it either, nor did he disregard the scientific method. He thought modern approaches were the zenith of human thought, but the Indian teaching impacted him and many others in a very profound way. It likely was the lynchpin that has science and qm where it is today. Btw, we negotiated our environment very well long before we knew why. Isn’t that a clue?

      Like

        1. What does that even mean? Have you ever witnessed anything conscious without an entity to go along with it? Have you ever seen without conscious that was living? How can you know which is the order of operations? The seem to be one process.

          Like

          1. Okay, story time.

            After a lot of heavy reading that included Heienberg and Bell and Bohr and Born and Jordan Schrodinger, some lighter reading that included Zukav’s Dancing Wu Li Masters and the play Copenhagen, much seminar discussions and papers, we students were tasked to come up with a presentation to ‘explain’ some aspect of QM. My task was to explain emergent properties.

            So, first I wrote and then taught the seminar group to sing a simple 4 part round (Energy is acceleration, energy is the same as mass. A photon is a wave and particle, quantum mechanic’s a blast). The point was that exactly the same thing when phased or ‘shifted’ in time, produced different blocks of sound not sung. These sounds ’emerged’. We then went into a 6 story stairwell and took turns singing and listening… from different levels. Entirely new voices were created that no one was singing yet could be clearly heard. These were harmonics, a physical property of sound that could produce new sounds that only ’emerged’ when then other sounds were made and phased. If I encounter any of these students today, they still sing that song to me! Oh well. I guess I deserve that.

            Anyway, the point is that I continue to try to learn about this weird physics. On my shelf is Frank Turok and Sean Carroll and Frank Wilczek. None of them try to insert some level of mysticism into this physics but presume there are reasons for phenomena. Whether we know them all yet is not in question: there is much work to be done and this why no physicist wipes their hands and says, “There. Now we understand everything.” We don’t. But mysticism is not a method that produces knowledge. Ever.

            Yes, consciousness comes from reality. Reality contains everything but it also is the means for emergent properties to arise including those we can detect… emergent properties like consciousness that is demonstrably and directly linked to the biology that produces it, a biology that itself creates the right conditions for the necessary prerequisites – like a brain. There is nothing but compelling and overwhelming evidence for this claim and no compelling evidence contrary to it.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. I read wu li masters about 5 times. Excellent!
              They don’t have to insert any mysticism into physics because it is inherent to it. It is the elephant.
              We can’t identify where thought comes from. There is pretty good evidence even casually that there is more to it than the brain.
              Great answer. What I like about your comments is they give the believer some very good fat to chew on vs simply believing whatever suits them. I do find it fascinating that the greatest minds of our generation found this a sensible approach to ponder the great questions.

              Like

            2. It’s no coincidence the base of mystic and mystery refer to the unknown in the latter sense and those initiated into the unknown by the former. Becoming a mystic has its roots from historically being initiated by secret ceremonies into a religion that offers a secretive supernatural model or metaphysical explanation of why things are they way they are. Of course, slapping a label on the unknown and calling it this, that, or the other thing doesn’t provide insight or illumination; it just offers a false sense – perhaps untestable claim is a better term – of both. What is needed to elevate someone from being a mystic to being knowledgeable is an incorporation of the explanation into a stand-alone technology, application, or therapy to grant it any potential to be of actual, demonstrable, explanatory power. Prior to that, these labels – these ‘special’ terms that are so fuzzy in meaning as to be widely interpreted – are simply synonyms for, “I don’t know and neither do you.” (Reminds me strongly of the core of sociology as a field of ‘study’. It’s ALL about the terminology.) That’s why we find mystics around ideas that cannot be investigated; they have been initiated and so have special insight by this fait accompli. Mystics regularly supply insight that is synonymous in all practical ways with, “I don’t know and you don’t either,” but they sound so mysterious. That’s why they’re a dime a dozen in religious and ‘spiritual’ circles; they are plentiful wherever knowledge (justified true belief) is either absent or lacking.

              ‘Consciousness’ is a prime arena because it’s such a fuzzy term. What does it actually mean? Mind? Awareness… of the internal kind and/or of the external kind? Agency? Awake? Sentience? Intelligence? Certainly the opposite term ‘unconsciousness’ indicates an absence of agency but not unawareness necessarily (but sometimes!). I prefer the term ‘mind’ because it’s understood as a faculty of an organ (well, of neurons and dendrites and axons wherever they may be in the biology {apparently our guts have lining with neurons and we know the octopus has neuron bundles in each tentacle… al very cool stuff} and one that can be tested in a variety of ways). Mind is directly dependent in all ways on the health of the brain, which is why I say mind is what the brain does, a faculty that self-organizes according to both genetic inheritance and environment. The more we find out about the actual stuff going on in the brain, the equal the reduction in the ‘mysticism’ of it all. The ‘problem’ of consciousness grows smaller every year.

              Sound familiar? It should. It’s why the boundaries claimed by religious mystics has been shrinking for quite some time now. And the constraint of those boundaries of the unknown is also the same: knowledge.

              Liked by 4 people

            3. What is natural philosophy other than theorizing what cannot be demonstrated until it can be demonstrated? That these men got their ideas for the revolution in physics by way of a religious text does show that philosophy has some sound basis. Why is that so hard to acknowledge?

              Like

            4. Well, Jim, I got to say I laughed out loud at this: natural philosophy is the term used back in the day to describe metaphysical musings about (non existent) ’causes’! Using philosophy to arbitrate reality based on metaphysical premises (empty assertions and assumptions) is about as useful as using a blow dryer to freeze water. It’s the wrong tool. These men got their ideas – like most brilliant insights – by making connections using math.

              The fascinating part of all this is the reliance on a symbolic language within a idiomatic framework of comparative quantity… otherwise known as ‘math’. And as long as one stays within the idiomatic boundaries of mathematics, one can ‘play’ with the symbols and find revelation when transferred back into the physical world. Not necessarily understanding but a revelation of something having an affect. (For example, we know mass produces a force we call ‘gravity’ but no real understanding of what ‘it’ is. We just know its affect.) Words, the symbolic language used in philosophy bounded by logic does not produce the same results because words are an open system. That’s why it’s the wrong tool.

              So when you attribute the use of a probabilities equation to a philosophical origin, you’re making massive leaps of assumption. But because math is symbolic and words are symbolic and philosophical ideas are symbolic and religion (contrary to fundamentalist beliefs) is symbolic, you’re argument isn’t wrong; explanations often include some passing reference to some symbolic language. For example, the double helix is famously reported to be granted during sleep when a dream of a snake eating its own tail stayed with Watson and he applied the mythological symbol to biology. That’s how our brains think: by symbols. We don’t call it this usually: we tend to call it ‘meaning’. Our dreams are our brains talking things over between the hemispheres. So unless you consider Norse mythology of Ouroboros to be the progenitor of Deoxyribonucleic Acid, it’s quite a stretch to suggest the Upanashad the cause for quantum physics. It’s actually a much stronger argument to claim that Thucydides (Heisenberg’s father was a classics expert) was more of a driving force. At the heart of the matter is the idea of a different way of thinking about cause and effect in the form of probabilities. That, after all, is what the wave function is: a way to calculate all possible probabilities. But it is also extraordinarily predictive when values are added, but this raises the ‘weirdness’ factor in that the math, for example, works just as well for time to have both a positive (forward) and negative(backwards) value. So the weirdness is almost always a mathematical revelation that is unexpected or doesn’t fit with classical physics. But the equation predictively works! That’s the thing – like the equations for calculating gravity works even though we don’t know why.

              Yet.

              Liked by 1 person

            5. tildeb, i encourage you to invest $25 and buy The Tibetan Book on Living and Dying, by Sogyal Rinpoche. it’s a priceless masterpiece. i’m not buddhist, nor very interested in buddhism, yet this book fell in my hands and i cannot say what an amazing source of wisdom it is. buy it out of curiosity, if not interest. it is a treasure for every living being, not just buddhists. (ps Buddhism uses ‘mind’ for consciousness)

              it presents clearly and compassionately all there is to know about what mind is, how thoughts come about, where they form, how the influence reality, what happens in death and how our life now affects that.

              Sogyal was a Tibetan lama of the Nyingma tradition, which apparently is one of the oldest schools.

              Liked by 1 person

            6. For Zen students the most important thing is not to be dualistic. Our “original mind” includes everything within itself. It is always rich and sufficient within itself. You should not lose your self-sufficient state of mind. This does not mean a closed mind, but actually an empty mind and a ready mind. If your mind is empty, it is always ready for anything; it is open to everything. In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities; in the expert’s mind there are few—Shunryu Suzuki

              Like

            7. I read a translation of the Tibetan Book of the Dead more than a few decades ago. I remember how profoundly I wanted to argue its many claims so I got together with several monks and the fuzzy language they constantly relied on was simply too excruciating to bear. That my brother who had received a significant brain injury was enamored by it as he sought to control the world and insisted his will could do so did not help put me in the right frame of mind. What did help (he was also a bit of a compulsive germaphobe when it suited him) was listening to him spout Buddhist sayings as if full of wisdom and watching him spread his arms wide at the beach one day, look up into the sky with a beatific smile, and command a flock of birds to fly over (they were already in the process)… which they did. Having such power to cause effect in the world by will alone made him laugh… until bird poop fell directly into his mouth and splattered wetly across all his clean clothes. Yes, the universe operates in mysterious ways.

              Liked by 2 people

            8. omg, that’s a dreadful story. it shows how a great thing can turn bad when put into the wrong hands ( have we not witnessed this so many times?)
              it also shows that when one isn’t willing to hear an opposite opinion… he probably has the only right opinion in the world. you must be a Buddha!

              Liked by 1 person

            9. Actually, my biggest criticism of Buddhism is the notion (held as if a high virtue) of trying to avoid suffering. To my way of thinking, this virtue is actually a vice in that time and effort is spent to avoid living fully in the here and now.

              Liked by 1 person

            10. buddhism doesn’t try to avoid suffering at all. in fact, the first is percept of Buddhism is “the truth of suffering”. he wanted to understand why we suffer, how suffering arises, and how to deal with it. not at all avoid it. he recognized life is suffering, because it entails death, sickness and loss.

              look, i’m not trying to convert you. i’m not buddhist nor would i follow this path. however, i do recognize its value and insights. when i knew very little about it, i thought it was dry and boring. but the more i learn, the more respect i gain.

              why it survived and produced many enlightened beings. buddhism is very, very profound and also very practical. it deals with concrete life situations, and doesn’t deal with metaphysics.
              there is nothing superficial about it. like all institutionalized religions, it has many faults, but that doesn’t negate the truths of the teachings. may wellness and harmony be with you 😊

              Liked by 2 people

  13. “Is it mere coincidence that physics can be so mystical in similarity, that uncertainty is certain, and that through observation we find that waves become particles (matter) and that the “real world” is illusory (not what it appears to be) upon our observation of them?”

    A sure sign of excuses and rationalizations for Oogity Boogity is close at hand when religious ideas reference quantum mechanics, that because this sciencey thing here is weird, this religiousie thing there is okay.

    Look, to align quantum mechanics with objective reality takes one shift in perspective and one shift only without any need or reason or justification to stick Oogity Boogity under the tent flap and say it’s a two-for-one deal or no deal at all. That shift is to UNDERSTAND that objective reality (objective in the sense of independent – ie NOT subjective – of any of us) is not a noun but a verb. It’s not a ‘thing’ but a ‘process’. When that understanding is used, every single piece of rationalization for any form of Oogity Boogity instantly and completely evaporates.

    Consciousness does not create physical properties and anyone of any standing in any field who claims otherwise is factually wrong… until and unless they can DEMONSTRATE otherwise and POOF! new material into being by use of consciousness alone. Until this is demonstrated, the claim is not just unfounded but unhinged.

    Consciousness is needed to capture the verb in action, this ongoing process of reality, but this NECESSARILY means certain elements of the unfolding process constantly changing reality by entropy MUST BE unknown, unanswerable, incompatible, to make the NECESSARY static state we have to capture when we take one slice of time in a never-ending block of unfolding reality and examine its properties.

    The gross mistake made repeatedly by ‘mystics’ in this matter is assuming that because the properties of slice is not uniform for all slices, therefore all slices are ‘illusory’, that ‘reality’ is neither objective nor real. This is a category mistake, a thinking fallacy, that presumes ‘reality’ must be one thing rather than a process. It’s like saying a runner is not real because when we use consciousness to capture the runner’s physical properties at one moment we can’t find the ‘running’! Well, duh. But this doesn’t mean the runner is imaginary, that ‘science’ agrees there’s a mystical element involved, that only the observer’s consciousness brings the runner into being. That’s why I say it’s both a GROSS misunderstanding of what ‘it’ is we’re talking about regarding objective reality that is not just unfounded but unhinged.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ”objective reality (objective in the sense of independent – is NOT subjective”.
      On the contrary, it is all subjective when viewing objects, or objective.
      I’m curious what you are afraid of? The premise of the piece is that the greatest minds in science got their ideas from an ancient text and put it to math. They were all profoundly impacted by this and Schrödinger even has an Upanishad on his grave stone, yet you resist.
      There is only one ultimate reality and we can’t pin it down. It doesn’t exist outside of you. This is the trick. There is only one contradictory free route to this reality, yet you embrace contradictory physics all the time. If you subscribe to the Big Bang, how could this even be hard for you to grasp. It is all one thing, one mind, many apertures, but somehow you believe that you are separate from it, yet you are still banging away on the fringes of this cosmic event.
      That the mind body problem has perplexed the greatest minds of all time, yet somehow you know. You just know it?
      There are many teachings in Hindu philosophy that enlarge the imagination for discovery. When you finally pin it down you may very well see that this has been known all along through this philosophy of non contradictory ideas. It all goes back to the initial singularity, but that is not all I’m afraid. It’s been going on much longer than we could ever imagine.
      These teachings are not some oogity boogity, but carefully reasoned to what we know is, not what we wish it to be. I’m not afraid to investigate it, and you might just see the rest of the world isn’t as stupid as you think.

      Like

      1. I exist within reality. I am part of the process. I know perfectly well that I am subject to that process, that I am not the same as I was yesterday and have every confidence and expectation to be different tomorrow. That’s the ‘effect’ of the process. My ‘consciousness’ does not alter this fact. It does create the process. It does not command the process. It is not separate from the process.

        There IS no mind/body divide. Mind is what the body does; I understand my consciousness is an emergent property of my biology. I have yet to encounter any reason or compelling evidence to suspect otherwise. So the idea that my consciousness – this emergent property of my biology – can magically produce a reality is exactly backwards: reality has produced the biology that has the emergent property of consciousness. We can get around the subjective nature of consciousness by creating methods of inquiry that suppress its effects, and the most compelling way is to produce stuff that works for everyone everywhere all the time based on shared ideas that seem to accurately describe how this process works. Just because ideas that seem to work well at a macro scale have less ability to maintain that accuracy at the quantum level doesn’t mean the macro ideas are wrong. Your head cannot pass through a wall without impact even though we know that there is plenty of space for all the molecules of the head to fit between all the molecules of the wall. That doesn’t make what we call ‘solidity’ an illusion; it means something else is going on between the molecules, some ‘invisible’ force or field that crosses space. How and why this works is very well represented in math when we quantify the strength of these connections, test these hypotheses, come up with a scale that works for everyone everywhere all the time, and then develop technologies that work reliably and consistently across time and space using this refined scale. You are trying to tell me that it is ‘wise’ to categorize these quantifications as subjective, that we have the conscious power to tweak and alter these fields and forces and particles and waves and energy so that each of us can cause whatever reality we deem appropriate. Well, I think that’s exactly wrong. I think the claim can be immediately tested. I think the claim can be demonstrated reliably and consistently to be absolute bunk. Furthermore, I think the claim waves away accumulated human knowledge about reality and leaves every single device you use based on our in-depth understanding of physics even at the macro level adrift in a sea of ignorance about WHY your computer and mine works the way they do to pass this comment across space and time. This function ain’t got nuthin to do with either of our consciousness’.

        Like

        1. One question, Tilded. Do your experiments on earth bring about the same results in zero-gravity space? Okay, two questions. How about on the surface of the sun?

          Like

          1. My experiments? What, you are exempt?

            There’s a reason Apollo’s Commander David Scott dropped a hammer and feather on the moon: to test the consistency of our explanatory model. Predict what you think happened. The video is here.

            Liked by 2 people

            1. Yours as in everyone’s, third person plural. Now, drop a hammer, any hammer, in open space, not on a material body. What happens?
              All I am trying to do is remind you that physics does depend on the environment. It also depends on accepted (believed to be known) facts at a given point in history. Science is only true until it is proven false. We, in 2021, do still not know everything, and likely a lot of what we think we now know is going to change before the end of this century. You, personally, have made some statements above as absolute capital T Truth. To me, that is completely unscientific. It is only true, until it is not.

              Like

            2. Physics is labels statistics and calculus. The environment preceded those calculations. Whether awareness came before or after that is what’s in question.

              Like

            3. Physics is the framework of the universe. The study of how it works is the subject of physics. Physics is described symbolically using math (which is why so many people find it a difficult subject) and then this understanding is applied backwards into technologies, applications, and therapies that independently reflect the value of how accurately this modelling reflects our understanding of the framework. That’s why your cell phone works. It has nothing to do with my consciousness and its reliable and consistent operation is completely and utterly separate from my mind. You should be thankful this is the case, or you’d get nothing but a busy signal!

              Liked by 1 person

            4. I would say that’s partly right. The cellphone is an extension of consciousness, like the computer. Think of it as an extended phenotype. Physics is the study of the physical world. It is not the physical world. The symbols used are for a select few to understand and explain. Everything has an explanation, but those are not the things themselves. Casting a graph over an ecosystem and delineating segment through calculus is not the real world. Where it begins and where it ends is completely arbitrary.

              Like

            5. This is why I intentionally used the term ‘modelling’ when it comes to math describing physics. From that model we deduce an explanation which we then test. One of the most important ways of testing is by taking the explanation and applying it. This births technology, applications, and therapies. These work because the modelling seems to accurately reflect (that’s the key idea here: a reflection of … yup, reality!) how reality operates. Nowhere in any of this does the consciousness of a single person matter a tinker’s damn. Your cell phone doesn’t work because of you and your consciousness. Your cell phone works because the technology is based on an explanation how reality works. You play no part in this other than as a user of the applied explanation.

              So here’s the thing: if consciousness determined reality, your cell phone wouldn’t work. And it wouldn’t work if your consciousness did not FIRST have a full understanding that was then projected unto reality. If, like almost everyone, your consciousness did not have this full understanding to ‘make’ your cell phone work before you ever picked the gadget up and starting manipulating its electronic functions the very first time, then it shouldn’t work IF your consciousness creates reality. But it does work… in spite of you not knowing everything about how it must function in order to operate… which indicates it is not a PROJECTION of your consciousness but a REFLECTION of something beyond your own consciousness.

              Liked by 1 person

            6. Of course consciousness is the driver, the only driver. Without consciousness nothing can be seen to exist, whether you are alive or not. One day, long ago, there was no consciousness, so it can not be proved anything existed. One day, in the future, life will be no more, and any concept of the universe will vanish. You can argue it will still be there, but you will not be able to prove it. Reality needs consciousness to exist, and nothing anyone can say will ever change that. ‘Nuff said.

              Like

            7. If a tree falls in the forest and there’s no one there to hear it, does it make sound?

              This Buddhist chestnut has been around forever as if it reveals a deeper ‘truth’. Well, the answer is yes. Unequivocally. And the evidence is from the physics of reality, the same physics applied successfully because it is a reliable and consistent demonstrable explanation of what sound is and how it is produced. Sound is demonstrably NOT subjective so you don’t need a ‘listener’ to verify if a sound has been produced. The evidence from reality for this explanation is overwhelming. (This is one reason why we use instruments to measure, to eliminate as much as possible this notion of subjective bias.)

              To claim otherwise requires a similar explanation supported by a comparable amount of evidence in its favour of what sound is, how it’s produced, and how the source can be negated by the absence of a listener. This is your task if you want to claim the answer to the above question is anything other than Yes. This is why such memes are metaphysical rabbit holes that attempt to overthrow accumulated and earned knowledge with an unreasonable, unjustified contrary belief disguised under the auspices of ‘mysticism’ and ‘humility’.

              Like

            8. If there is nothing there to hear it, it does not make a sound. It makes a vibration. Sound is a relationship between a vibration and a functioning eardrum.

              Liked by 2 people

            9. I am jot trying to overthrow anything. What good is a physical reality when there us no thing to experience it. All of the physical in existence us not going to change the fact it is utterly useless.
              I do not think you can conceive of no life! You are addicted to life by the very fact you are alive. But once you come face-to-face with the ultimate end of life, all your physics crumbles into the ocean like K-2.
              It is all a matter of perpective, and it takes some kind of consciousness, defined in life, to give your physics value.
              I will never convince you of this, td, just like you will never convince me anything has meaning without life. At present, we have your reality because there are living beings in it, so we may as well agree that for now you are correct. But, there will come a time when my vision will defeat yours. It is only a matter of time.

              Like

            10. buddhism is a study of mind. Buddha realized if the instrument that studies reality is faulty, then the results will also be faulty.

              those of us who hardly have any concept of what mind is and how it operates, can hardly be in a position to make clear judgements. our minds are running non-stop, our lives are messy, our bodies are ill, how can we say we know what reality is?? if you saw reality clearly, you’d be a peaceful, joyful, loving being in the world. no thought would ever trouble you.

              Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s