quantum physics says reality only exsists in the past

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posted on Sep, 3 2008 @ 05:13 AM
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Originally posted by mapsurfer_
reply to post by constantwonder
 

Yeah, this is true.. even measuring something in real-time (down to a yactosecond) is still a past observation. So effectively, we are *always* seeing the past.


Yactosecond?


And why pick a Yoctosecond (10e-24 seconds) anyway, it's as arbitrary as your spelling.




posted on Sep, 3 2008 @ 06:18 AM
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While the information from the event is still registering in your sensory areas of the brain... your brain has already predicted it. Hence... it could be argued that you are living in the future by a small fraction of a second.

Your brain has already declared its observation, before observing.



posted on Sep, 3 2008 @ 07:47 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by SectionEight
 

The object of meditation is not to think: rather, it is to be open to all perceptual information without allowing oneself to be distracted by thinking about it. That is the very opposite of being 'alone with your thoughts'.

Besides, your thoughts (ie your mental processes) are not in the present; by the time you are conscious of them, they are already past.


Again that is what I said in "still not there".
Anyways in the absence of sensory stimuli, your relative reality is closer to the true present.

A past prediction of even more past stimuli forms the present relative to yourself.
Death interjects itself between past stimuli and prediction because you cannot form a prediction if you died in the past. Death can therefore never be predicted.



posted on Sep, 3 2008 @ 09:38 AM
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If reality only existed in the "micro past" then (in order for it to be true) one would expect it to be harder to predict the future in the micro past. Any examples?
Anyway the fact that if someone chucks a ball at the wall and I know it will bounce back, before it does; would seem to confirm that it exists in the future as much as it does in the past. Nevermind how all objects-people time travel into the future just by moving (a proven fact, though the amount is incredibly small).



posted on Sep, 3 2008 @ 03:00 PM
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Originally posted by Liberal1984

If reality only existed in the "micro past" then (in order for it to be true) one would expect it to be harder to predict the future in the micro past. Any examples?


Ever heard of dreams where reality seems to last hours or days but in fact only a few minutes have passed? Your external sensory is disconnected during dreams. Will get back to this.

Compare this to the internal latency of on die cache in a modern cpu, that as we know has a lower possible latency than external cache, simply because the distance traveled in time is vastly greater to the external cache. In the same way external stimuli take more microseconds to process than when dreaming where the stimuli are internally within the brain.

Now back to the long dreams which only last a few minutes, your brain is processing (or predicting) the same amount of times as a few hours or days of being awake.
Your predictions per unit of time increase by shortening the distance between the past and the future, the interpretation of the present is the same, relative to the amount of predictions made.
This suggests that predictions in the micro past are not harder but examining the strange twisted reallity that dreaming creates, one could conclude that the predictions made at this exponentially faster capacity introduce more flawed predictions than at the normal level when awake and slowed by the processing of external stimuli.



posted on Sep, 4 2008 @ 07:47 PM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 





I'm afraid not. Consciousness, as pointed out earlier, does not exist in the present. It exists in the past.


I really am interested in understanding what you think consciousness is or isn't -

for one thing - I'm interested in all possible angles/theories/hunches - whatever

and - I am just not getting how you see things - at least not exactly

but it's interesting

I like the Nuturalism.org site - I'm going to spend a lot of time there

just great - another site - not exactly what I need right now

so, we don't exist now - but half a second ago - kinda sorta?

I can see that - but if consciousness does exist in the past, not in the present - it still exists? No?

not poking - just trying to get a grip

I'm reading a book right now on Quantum Physics that I'm sure will only make you roll your eyes - but - reading it anyway - it made some pretty bold promises - so, I just have to look

I buy magazines for the same reason

but, the subject - quantum physics/time/consciousness - self (or the lack thereof) obviously interests me

is there a book you would actually recommend for someone who has an interest - but no background in science - something reasonably accessible?



posted on Sep, 5 2008 @ 02:46 AM
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reply to post by Spiramirabilis
 

I don't know if there is any such thing as a good popular account of quantum mechanics. Richard Feynman, the originator of the theory of quantum electrodynamics and a legendary humorist, observed that 'if you think you understand quantum mechanics, you don't'. These wise words should serve as a warning to any layman hoping to get a grip on this terrifying subject without any training in physics and mathematics.

If that doesn't put you off and you are determined to plough ahead regardless, I salute you. Here are a few things you should know.

  • Quantum phenomena occur on a very, very small scale, known as the Planck scale. How small is this? Well, a unit of Plank length is 1/10,000,000,000,000,000,000 times the diameter of a proton, or roughly 3/500,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 of an inch*. The consequences of a single quantum event can sometimes be detectable at the human scale (as in the Schroedinger's Cat thought-experiment or the operations of 'tunneling' electronic devices), but the sum of the unimaginably vast numbers of quantum events constantly occurring is very simply the real world, which follows the laws of classical (relativistic) mechanics. Thus fundamental uncertainties at the quantum level are eliminated and the universe is apprehended as deterministic**. This process, which some explain as decoherence, is part of the great scandal of quantum mechanics, otherwise known as the

  • observer effect. This is the one thing everyone thinks they know about quantum mechanics, which is that quantum outcomes are affected by the act of measurement. It is scandalous because it demands the presence of an observer to make reality real. But the quantum observer effect is also - and here's the crunch - inoperative on scales larger than the Planck scale.

  • You may also be surprised to learn that, although quantum theory has been borne out by countless experiments, it is in some sense flawed or incomplete. The observer effect is one indication of this, as I pointed out in an earlier post: things happen anway, whether someone's around to observe and measure them or not.

  • The other indication is that, put very simply, quantum mechanics does not agree with general relativity, another theory which has been massively substantiated by observation and experiment, and is moreover far more consistent in itself and its predictions than quantum theory is. All quantum events are described as taking place against a fixed universal background. But the real world is not like that: space and time are in constant flux under the influence of gravity. There is no fixed background.

None of this states that quantum thory is wrong; merely that it is incomplete, or a special case of a more general theory, just as Newtonian mechanics is a special case of general relativity in which certain values are constrained. There is no complete theory of the world in physics - supersymmetry, supergravity, string theory, M-theory and all the rest have enormous caveats atached to them. The scary truth is that there has been no progress on a real, falsifiable theory of the world since the late 1970s. In fact, with the discovery of dark matter and dark energy and the increasingly weird behaviour ascribed to black holes, confusion has been worse confounded.

Remember all this when you crack the covers of that book of yours.

The phrase 'quantum physics' is not wrong, but when I hear it used by a layman, my antennae always prick up, because in the nonscientific world 'quantum physics' is code for wish-fulfilling pseudoscience that has nothing to do with quantum theory or quantum mechanics. In 'quantum physics', free will is made possible by Heisenbergian uncertainty in the operations of 'microtubules in the brain', water has 'memory' and willpower can alter reality. Quantum theory does not predict or support any of this.***

* * *


Why do you want to learn about quantum mechanics? Do you intend to make a career of it, or are you simply very interested in physics? If you're really interested, you'll find some book recommendations here and here. The Shankar and the Dirac are classics - Paul Dirac was one of the founders of quantum mechanics. However, the book mentioned by the OP in one of those forums, Zukav's The Dancing Wu Li Masters, is mystical tosh. Neither the physics nor the Eastern philosophy in it are to be trusted.

If you're interested in the philosphy of quantum theory (I mean philosophy in the academic Western sense) I'm afraid I can't help you much.

And if your interest is chiefly in spiritual things, my advice is to stay away from quantum mechanics. Truly, it has nothing to offer you. It is about vanishingly tiny and quite possibly nonexistent particles crashing into each other. It is an incomplete theory and almost certainly not an accurate description of the real world. Forget about it.
 

*I hope I got all the zeros in. For those who wish to check, the respective figures are in fact 10^-20 and 6.3 x 10^-34

**Hence, no free will (again!)

*** Specifically, it does not make it possible to change the world through willpower.

[edit on 5-9-2008 by Astyanax]



posted on Sep, 5 2008 @ 03:25 AM
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reply to post by Liberal1984
 

Oh, I agree. Don't forget that time is a dimension, like the three dimensions of space. We can only travel along it one way, at a certain speed, which gives us our idea of events occurring, but our absence from them does not mean the past and future don't exist.

There are lots of issues here, though. Causation, like entropy, seems to be a kind of 'arrow of time'. How does one square that with the spacetime landscape of General Relativity? Does it matter? Jiggered if I know.



posted on Sep, 5 2008 @ 03:43 AM
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Text White

Google Video Link
Text Black Great post! You are right as far as you went. The only thing that is in the present is consciousness which is constantly receiving data or input, that is in fact slightly, and I emphasize slightly, in the past, as the intervals are too short to be consciously aware of, or to matter in practical situations.



posted on Sep, 5 2008 @ 03:49 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
It is increasingly clear that consciousness is a projection of some sort caused by (and possibly no more than a by-product of) organic function. The self is an illusion and free will does not exist except in the most rudimentary sense.

More here, and much more here.


Interesting observations considering my own spiritual studies reached the same conclusions that given a higher power (God) exists, that created beings (living things) experience life as consciousness embedded into a physical body, yet under the illusion of free-will. Under close scrutiny that we are not judged but are loved, the illusion of good and bad is merely our higher selves carrying out a scenario or movie for our lower selves to experience in the theater of a physical body.

Yes, we are just playing with ourselves in a test designed to refine our abilities to become Gods who won't strike down populations with bolts of lightening when it gets upset.



posted on Sep, 5 2008 @ 11:56 AM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 




'if you think you understand quantum mechanics, you don't'


this is true for all knowledge - and it's the kind of statement that always clues me in to the possibility of getting an objective opinion - and rational point of view on any subject

also, I wasn't really counting on getting a primer in the deal - above and beyond -so thanks




Why do you want to learn about quantum mechanics? Do you intend to make a career of it, or are you simply very interested in physics? If you're really interested, you'll find some book recommendations here and here. The Shankar and the Dirac are classics - Paul Dirac was one of the founders of quantum mechanics. However, the book mentioned by the OP in one of those forums, Zukav's The Dancing Wu Li Masters, is mystical tosh. Neither the physics nor the Eastern philosophy in it are to be trusted.


this made me laugh out loud

and laugh, and laugh...

I can barely make a living at art - so that should put the possibility of a career in physics in perspective

let's just say I'm interested in everything

really and truly interested

I would have to write a paper to explain why physics interests me - but, it always has - even when I was too young too know that there was something called physics

the best way I can explain it here is - there is something in math and science that I feel connected too - but I don't have a head for the academics of it

theory - concept - I can get the basic gist - but it's not the same as understanding the fundamentals

it's like a curse really :-)

but - I have a head for art - and I sometimes see all the mysteries of the universe unfold right in front of me

I can explain it by saying - I love to use the paint - but I would also love to know how to make the paint

so thanks - this should keep me out of trouble for a while



[edit on 9/5/2008 by Spiramirabilis]



posted on Sep, 5 2008 @ 12:29 PM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 





observer effect. This is the one thing everyone thinks they know about quantum mechanics, which is that quantum outcomes are affected by the act of measurement. It is scandalous because it demands the presence of an observer to make reality real. But the quantum observer effect is also - and here's the crunch - inoperative on scales larger than the Planck scale.


just to be annoying - maybe on the larger scale - you just need a larger observer

:-)

I'm just saying...



posted on Sep, 5 2008 @ 12:40 PM
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I like to imagine that time, if it exists as an objective entity separate from human experience, is just the constant change in the configuration of the universe as the particles move about, energy and matter convert into each other, and so on.

It plays well into the Buddhist concept of never being able to step into the same river twice, or even once really since the river is constantly changing even as you step into it.

Time equals change and change is the only constant.



posted on Sep, 5 2008 @ 12:43 PM
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reply to post by Cyberbian
 


I have often thought that it would be impossible to travel forward in time, i.e. travel in to the future and only possible to travel back in time because the future has not happened yet.



posted on Sep, 6 2008 @ 04:20 AM
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Seems like a bit of a paradox at first blush, but then - Quantum Physics isn't my forte. Physical reality only exists when it is observed, at which time a particle's wave form collapses and it takes on the properties of matter which make up reality. (The old Schroedinger's Cat) If there is always some form of time-lag between our observance and physical reality - then how does the wave-form collapse in the present to affect the past that we DO observe? Does Quantum Mechanics account for a sort of "pre-observance" wave form collapse?

If that were true, then would that mean that the collapsing waveform is not entirely dependent on observation, but rather is in a way, omniscient and our observations are merely a sort of secondary driver of it?

... sort of reminds me of a character living in a virtual environment within a computer simulation. The reality it sees is constructed in real-time around it, whereas changes in the unobserved environment may take place - but are not actually modeled by the computer until observed or are likely to be observed (sort of like pre-fetching and caching).


As for time itself not being an official dimension, didn't NASA preform experiments where they send clocks up on the space shuttle and after it's return from orbit they were found to indeed be running slower than it's synchronized clock on Earth?


Edit: Read Astyanax's post. I won't edit the post above, but it can be disregarded. I didn't realize that I was basing my perspective on basically a meme and misconception.

[edit on 6-9-2008 by Lasheic]



posted on Sep, 6 2008 @ 05:22 AM
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reply to post by Spiramirabilis
 


maybe you just need a larger observer

A really, really big one? Seated on a shining throne of jasper and crystal, with divine effulgence radiating from His countenance and long white beard?

Tried that one, but He can't abide quantum mechanics. Doesn't play dice, according to Uncle Albert.



posted on Sep, 6 2008 @ 10:50 AM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 


pretty...

no, not that one - I meant the other one

probably hairless - not so fancy

but - I didn't get a real good look, so...maybe it was just my imagination

and not dice - but maybe poker

or battleship

thanks again



posted on Sep, 6 2008 @ 12:33 PM
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reply to post by constantwonder
 




If you are referring to the recently "discovered" half-second or so delay between an event (or a "sight") and its perception (I think I saw a thread about it on this site), I think it explains the deja vu phenomenon, certainly to my satisfaction.

It does not explain true (long-term) precognition, i.e. perception of events that are more than a few seconds in the "future".

And precognition does exist; I know that for a fact, from my own experience as well as from other people's experiences.
Which is precisely why I am not particularly predisposed to get entangled in a discussion about its existence (in case anyone was hoping for that
).



posted on Sep, 6 2008 @ 12:52 PM
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I wrote this a while back. Think it is apt here:

Time is an eternal moment of now
Albert Einstein has been credited with the above statement.

What he meant by it is that there is no past. Only the traces of it which are left in your brain. There is no future. Only a concept of what the future might be based on past experiences.

When I think about that my brain goes into overload. It is like the concept of infinity. Or that space is infinitely big. I have never been able to comprehend either.

What does it mean that there is no past, no future just the now? How long does "now" last? A few nanoseconds?

If you give it a number of nanoseconds you can still divide it into the past and what is still to pass. So the only answer is that "now" lasts 0 seconds. Here is where it gets mind boggling. Isn't 0+0=0? So why does time pass at all? After all, time is made up of moments that don't last.

I think it is essential to separate the human concept of time and the reality of "now". We have devised ways to be able to count the zeros to see a time line. We can project the zeros ad infinitum to get a continuous line into the future (albeit a theoretical one).

Another dimension to "now" is that it takes our brain a few nanoseconds to process what the senses have registered. So in fact we have two time lines. The actual "now" and the perceived "now". They run parallel but are not in synch. A bit like a sound track which does not run in time with the frames.

What I find hard to comprehend is that if we did not process and store all these moments of now, we would not have lives. Just incoherent random moments that do not have meaning and do not build up to anything. It might be scientific fact but because we have consciousness and are able to remember, our lives are not eternal moments of now.

Our lives are made up from memories, hopes and fears ranging from unimportant to live altering.

Thank god for that, eh?



posted on Sep, 6 2008 @ 12:55 PM
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reply to post by constantwonder
 


Possibly onto something there, but it is my opinion that the Universe does not operate like a loading program. Regardless of our perception of time all things exist simultaneously, in a universal 'present'.

Although, based on your theory, it stands to reason that we can not truly perceive the present moment, merely it exists, and we are part of this moment of 'present'





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