There is a new paradigm forming within the mind of man – a new world view. This occurs rarely in human history. However, looking back over the past 100,000 years or so, the pace of new ideas does seem to be speeding up.
This process is most simply described as the formulation of a consciousness-based reality paradigm, which can be viewed in nascent form across the major disciplines of human thought from cosmology and the new physics to neuroscience and contemporary philosophical inquiry.
There are several key elements which underlie current theory in these fields. They are the result of evidence gathered in the most exacting research, mathematical analysis, and experimental data. The role of consciousness – essentially ignored during centuries of materialistic thinking – is being restored to its rightful place at the center of human inquiry.
Without consciousness, (the observer), there is no actual matter in the universe because probability waves do not collapse into actual particles until they are observed. In other words, without observation (consciousness) matter doesn’t exist. Either consciousness must precede matter or they must come into being simultaneously.
Imagine the first proto-living molecules undergoing a first flash of life – in other words, an initial instant of evolution toward conscious awareness. This causes the entire edifice of infinite potentiality we call “the cosmos” to manifest itself in all the possible pathways of spacetime. That instant not only sets into motion all possible futures but all possible pasts, as well. (These have something to do with non-locality and entanglement) I mean to say that the proto-life form itself, including its constituent molecules and environment do not exist until they become conscious in some way.
That state is simple enough to characterize as just one possible state of the universe – the state in which a life-form becomes aware of itself and its environment. It occurs because it is highly improbable that it would not occur.
In other words, given enough of nothing, something is bound to appear – because a vast amount of nothing is very improbable. And for something to appear it must be conscious – otherwise, in the absence of an observer, the probability waves would not collapse at all. Once they do, we have long chains of causation moving forward and backward in time – one of which is human evolution, which results in your eyes on this page at this very moment.
What is most interesting to me is not that this exceedingly strange quantum weirdness is possible or even probable but that it is ever so gradually becoming the dominant paradigm bridging all human endeavors – from the leading edge of science to the frontiers of philosophical formulation. The reason I know this is because I am encountering it more and more each day. And each day, more of us are beginning…just beginning…to show signs of understanding.
Image: “The New World Idea,” digital image mashup of human brain, spiral galaxy, and ink drawing by Tullio DeSantis, 2010.
YouTube Video: Amit Goswami, “Quantum Physics & Consciousness,” Part 1 of 3