Parapsychology Journalism: The People, The Theory, The Science, The Skeptics
Update: 8-29-11: Hat tip to Martin in the comments below: He provided this article: http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/07/hologram-universe/ which states:
An astrophysicist’s attempt to measure quantum “fuzziness” — to find out if we’re living in a hologram — has been headed off at the pass by results suggesting that we’re probably not.
I await further results. Skepticism of non mainstream ideas frequently contains bold statements declaring victory in a war when only a minor skirmish has been won. I personally don’t know enough about this subject to reach any conclusions myself. I just know enough not to accept all such statements at face value. Time will tell.
Latest Update on the Holographic Universe Theory 2-14-10: Another article came out in New Scientist that provides detailed information on the scientific evidence to date: Our World May Be a Giant Hologram
UPDATE: No sooner had I made this post than an article popped up that shows new evidence suggesting a holographic universe. Here’s the link: Our world may be a giant hologram
What’s interesting is that scientists are speculating that our 3-D world is a holographic projection of a 2-D world. Typical scientist blather. Until they accept the evidence for psi, they’re just going to be wrong, wrong, wrong. Consciousness has a lot to do with this model.
Start of Article:
The idea of what makes up our universe has been constantly expanding through the ages. The most fashionable model at present is something called “String Theory.” It is actually a rather large group of theories and has between nine and eleven dimensions.
According to the book “The Trouble with Physics” by Lee Smolin, this theory is going nowhere. It has made no predictions, it has no experiments to its credit and continues to grow although its foundational base is questionable.
Also, the world of physics has not adequately addressed the problem of consciousness, as outlined in the book “Quantum Enigma: Physics Encounters Consciousness” by Bruce Rosenblum and Fred Kuttner nor has it dealt with the overwhelming evidence for the existence of Psi. It is important to deal with these aspects of reality because any model in which they cannot fit has already been disproven.
One model of reality does exist at present. It is called The Holographic Universe.
Aspect and his team discovered that under certain circumstances subatomic particles such as electrons are able to instantaneously communicate with each other regardless of the distance separating them. It doesn’t matter whether they are 10 feet or 10 billion miles apart.
Somehow each particle always seems to know what the other is doing. The problem with this feat is that it violates Einstein’s long-held tenet that no communication can travel faster than the speed of light. Since traveling faster than the speed of light is tantamount to breaking the time barrier, this daunting prospect has caused some physicists to try to come up with elaborate ways to explain away Aspect’s findings. But it has inspired others to offer even more radical explanations.
University of London physicist David Bohm, for example, believes Aspect’s findings imply that objective reality does not exist, that despite its apparent solidity the universe is at heart a phantasm, a gigantic and splendidly detailed hologram.
The term holograph is used because each point in a hologram contains all the information for the entire hologram. If you split a hologram in half, you have two smaller complete holograms, not two halves. If you split it again, you get four smaller complete versions.
The “whole in every part” nature of a hologram provides us with an entirely new way of understanding organization and order. For most of its history, Western science has labored under the bias that the best way to understand a physical phenomenon, whether a frog or an atom, is to dissect it and study its respective parts.
A hologram teaches us that some things in the universe may not lend themselves to this approach. If we try to take apart something constructed holographically, we will not get the pieces of which it is made, we will only get smaller wholes.
This insight suggested to Bohm another way of understanding Aspect’s discovery. Bohm believes the reason subatomic particles are able to remain in contact with one another regardless of the distance separating them is not because they are sending some sort of mysterious signal back and forth, but because their separateness is an illusion. He argues that at some deeper level of reality such particles are not individual entities, but are actually extensions of the same fundamental something.
This insight was not lost on Russell Targ, who prepared a paper with Elizabeth A. Rauscher entitled: Investigation of a Complex Space-Time Metric to Describe Precognition of the Future. The paper contains mathematical calculations to demonstrate the feasibility of his version of the theory.
Here is his overview:
For more than 100 years scientists have attempted to determine the truth or falsity of claims that some people are able to describe and experience events or information blocked from ordinary perception. For the past 25 years, the authors of this paper – together with researchers in laboratories around the world – have carried out experiments in remote viewing. The evidence for this mode of perception, or direct knowing of distant events and objects, has convinced us of the validity of these claims. It has been widely observed that the accuracy and reliability of this sensory awareness does not diminish with either electromagnetic shielding, nor with increases in temporal or spatial separation between the percipient and the target to be described. Modern physics describes such a time-and-space independent connection between percipient and target as nonlocal.
In this paper we present a geometrical model of space-time, which has already been extensively studied in the technical literature of mathematics and physics. This eight-dimensional metric is known as “complex Minkowski space,” and has been shown to be consistent with our
present understanding of the equations of Newton, Maxwell, Einstein, and Schrödinger. It also has the interesting property of allowing a connection of zero distance between points in the complex
manifold, which appear to be separate from one another in ordinary observation. We propose a model that describes the major elements of experimental parapsychology, and at the same time is consistent
with the present highly successful structure of modern physics.
He describes the core of his theory as follows:
Specifically, we have examined a complex eight-dimensional Minkowski space which is consistent with the foundations of quantum mechanics, Maxwell’s formalism, and the theory of relativity. This is a purely geometrical model formulated in terms of space and time coordinates, in which each of the familiar three spatial and one temporal coordinates is expanded into its real and imaginary parts – making a total of six spatial, and two temporal coordinates,
Targ demonstrates how the theory is consistent with Psi.
The complex eight-space described here can always provide a path, or world line in space and time, which connects the viewer to a remote target, so that his awareness experiences zero spatial and/or temporal distance in the metric. It appears that for consciousness there may, or may not be any separation, depending on one’s intention.
He brings in an interesting concept:
It is well known that, under the conditions of various experimental arrangements, light displays either wave-like or particle-like properties. But, what then, is the essential nature of light? This question may not be amenable to the usual two logic, and may be better addressed by four logic or some form of expanded logic system. We might say, for example, that light is: (1) a wave, (2) not a wave, (3) both a wave and not a wave, or most correctly, (4) neither a wave, nor, not a wave.
This works perfectly from a holographic universe perspective:
Imagine an aquarium containing a fish. Imagine also that you are unable to see the aquarium directly and your knowledge about it and what it contains comes from two television cameras, one directed at the aquarium’s front and the other directed at its side.
As you stare at the two television monitors, you might assume that the fish on each of the screens are separate entities. After all, because the cameras are set at different angles, each of the images will be slightly different. But as you continue to watch the two fish, you will eventually become aware that there is a certain relationship between them.
When one turns, the other also makes a slightly different but corresponding turn; when one faces the front, the other always faces toward the side. If you remain unaware of the full scope of the situation, you might even conclude that the fish must be instantaneously communicating with one another, but this is clearly not the case.
This, says Bohm, is precisely what is going on between the subatomic particles in Aspect’s experiment.
According to Bohm, the apparent faster-than-light connection between subatomic particles is really telling us that there is a deeper level of reality we are not privy to, a more complex dimension beyond our own that is analogous to the aquarium. And, he adds, we view objects such as subatomic particles as separate from one another because we are seeing only a portion of their reality.
Such particles are not separate “parts”, but facets of a deeper and more underlying unity that is ultimately as holographic and indivisible as the previously mentioned rose. And since everything in physical reality is comprised of these “eidolons”, the universe is itself a projection, a hologram.
In addition to its phantomlike nature, such a universe would possess other rather startling features. If the apparent separateness of subatomic particles is illusory, it means that at a deeper level of reality all things in the universe are infinitely interconnected.
Thus, we can have light that is neither wave nor particle since these are only aspects of a more fundamental version of light. This brings us to the conclusion:
For if the concreteness of the world is but a secondary reality and what is “there” is actually a holographic blur of frequencies, and if the brain is also a hologram and only selects some of the frequencies out of this blur and mathematically transforms them into sensory perceptions, what becomes of objective reality?
Put quite simply, it ceases to exist. As the religions of the East have long upheld, the material world is Maya, an illusion, and although we may think we are physical beings moving through a physical world, this too is an illusion.
Russel Targ has thoughtfully included the mathematics, which I have already linked to, but here it is again.
I have to say that I am partial to this model of the universe. It more closely resembles the way that I experience the world and it certainly jives with how I experience psychic ability. (See: A Well Kept Secret #15: What is psychic ability?)
Naturally, with any model of the universe, you need to move theoretical ideas into the realm of experimental data. We’ll look at that in a future post.