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posted on Mar, 8 2011 @ 07:39 AM
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I was born in 1976. I'm Physicist (PhD) and an atheist. For the last five years, I've been living as an ex-pat in several Scandinavian countries working as a post-doctoral researcher at various research institutes.

Why am I on ATS? I am a scientist through and through. I constantly seek new phenomena and ways to explain it. Although I strongly contest the existence of any supernatural or paranormal (see below), I do believe that the curious observations made in the course of recorded human history cannot be all explained away as illusions.

We do not understand the time or the Planck-scale structure of our universe, and we know that we are still missing a comprehensive theory of quantum gravity. Even worse, we do not know what consciousness is, how it emerges from the great synaptic network of the brain tissue and how it reacts to external stimuli. This particular gap in our present knowledge is of a great concern to me, since the entire chain of evidence from physical observations to theories goes through the mirror of our mind - how we interpret the things we observe. There's nothing mystical to this. Just like any scientist must understand how his instrument works, we should know how our mind works, before we make definitive claims on the fundamental nature of reality. For instance, are the reported ghosts exceedingly rare cases of quantum-level tunneling of information from another point on this (or some other) space-time manifold?

It is also my belief that the universe is fundamentally rational and that the human mind, being itself a product of the universe, can comprehend the existence - that there is nothing we cannot eventually rationalize by faithfully applying the scientific method: physical observations, reason and rational skepticism.

Furthermore, I believe that what we call paranormal, divine or demonic is nothing but natural phenomena that is exceedingly rare and near-impossible to observe under well-controlled and repeatable experimental conditions. Without sufficient repetition and control that all good science is based upon, there can be no testable and falsifiable hypotheses and that is when we - unfortunately - tend to regress back to magical thinking. Instead of denying ignorance, we embrace it. We throw up our arms, willfully abdicate the power of our reason and seek revelation in pantheons of gods, legions of demons and ephemeral ghosts.

We don't need gods or ossified religions that were originally borne out of the murky depths of our ancestral reptilian brain stem, and later evolved into a control mechanism for the masses. Our fleeting lives are too short for that.

The universe is a beautiful thing to behold. Understanding how it works is an endless quest that takes us on a fantastic journey to both without and within!

Finally, I do not pretend to be a self-appointed lightbringer or an authority to this community. I will mostly content myself with reading personal accounts and contemplating scientific, physical theories that could explain the curious phenomena.
edit on 8/3/2011 by Jon Matthews because: (no reason given)

edit on 8/3/2011 by Jon Matthews because: (no reason given)




posted on Mar, 8 2011 @ 07:46 AM
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reply to post by Jon Matthews
 


Well hello Jon Matthews and welcome to ATS.

I am liking you already and I'm very much looking forward to your future contributions ... I think you have a lot to bring to the table and I for one cannot wait


Woody



posted on Mar, 8 2011 @ 07:49 AM
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reply to post by Jon Matthews
 


Explanation: Flagged!

Personal Disclosure: Welcome! OL is sure a mod will be along soon to help out with an informative post etc. I also recommend utilizing the green chat voyuer function on the ATS tool bar to the bottom of most ATS webpages [aka the ribbon]! It will enable you to watch who and what is being posted in chat but unfortunately you wont be able to join or chat back until your post count reaches 200 posts or so.

Reply to this post with the reply function up top right of this post and that'll be another post towards your mandatory 20 posts before you can start your own threads

Please message me using the message button on far left ATS tool bar [after you have made at least 20 posts] if you require any further help whatsoever!

Peace and much love!

Sincerely OL [OmegaLogos]



posted on Mar, 8 2011 @ 08:51 AM
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Originally posted by Jon Matthews
I was born in 1976. I'm Physicist (PhD) and an atheist. For the last five years, I've been living as an ex-pat in several Scandinavian countries working as a post-doctoral researcher at various research institutes.

Why am I on ATS? I am a scientist through and through. I constantly seek new phenomena and ways to explain it. Although I strongly contest the existence of any supernatural or paranormal (see below), I do believe that the curious observations made in the course of recorded human history cannot be all explained away as illusions.


Hello, Jon Matthews. I also agree that we cannot explain many experiences that we or others have intermittently throughout our lives. Science seems to fall short when it comes to understanding exactly what we are.


We do not understand the time or the Planck-scale structure of our universe, and we know that we are still missing a comprehensive theory of quantum gravity. Even worse, we do not know what consciousness is, how it emerges from the great synaptic network of the brain tissue and how it reacts to external stimuli. This particular gap in our present knowledge is of a great concern to me, since the entire chain of evidence from physical observations to theories goes through the mirror of our mind - how we interpret the things we observe. There's nothing mystical to this. Just like any scientist must understand how his instrument works, we should know how our mind works, before we make definitive claims on the fundamental nature of reality. For instance, are the reported ghosts exceedingly rare cases of quantum-level tunneling of information from another point on this (or some other) space-time manifold?


I have had heated discussions with my 15 yr. old son concerning consciousness and what it is. He believes it's a product of our own biological processes within the brain and I believe it reaches much further than the brain, because at times in my life, I have tapped into an unseen resevoir of information and have no idea where it came from. I also believe we all have the ability to access that level of consciousness.


It is also my belief that the universe is fundamentally rational and that the human mind, being itself a product of the universe, can comprehend the existence - that there is nothing we cannot eventually rationalize by faithfully applying the scientific method: physical observations, reason and rational skepticism.

Furthermore, I believe that what we call paranormal, divine or demonic is nothing but natural phenomena that is exceedingly rare and near-impossible to observe under well-controlled and repeatable experimental conditions. Without sufficient repetition and control that all good science is based upon, there can be no testable and falsifiable hypotheses and that is when we - unfortunately - tend to regress back to magical thinking. Instead of denying ignorance, we embrace it. We throw up our arms, willfully abdicate the power of our reason and seek revelation in pantheons of gods, legions of demons and ephemeral ghosts.

We don't need gods or ossified religions that were originally borne out of the murky depths of our ancestral reptilian brain stem, and later evolved into a control mechanism for the masses. Our fleeting lives are too short for that.


I agree, we don't and it doesn't bother me in the least that you are an atheist, although If I had to label myself, it would be gnostic. I believe there is an intelligent consciousness that we are connected to and is contained in all. I also believe there would be less fear, if people knew that everything is connected at a quantum level. As our perceptions change, our experiences change also and understanding what we truly are will be the greatest discovery. Don't ask me to explain that, lol. I just know there is more and we have the ability to attain a higher consciousness and a new level of being or higher state of being.


The universe is a beautiful thing to behold. Understanding how it works is an endless quest that takes us on a fantastic journey to both without and within!

Finally, I do not pretend to be a self-appointed lightbringer or an authority to this community. I will mostly content myself with reading personal accounts and contemplating scientific, physical theories that could explain the curious phenomena.


I'm sure noone is going to accuse you of being a lightbringer. Usually when a person claims atheism, they are looked upon by most as an odd specimen, lol, but I think you are on a path of observation and will discover what you are seeking within you. It seems that life is a reflection of our own inner thoughts and beliefs and it can be a beautiful experience.



posted on Mar, 8 2011 @ 01:14 PM
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reply to post by Jon Matthews
 


Hello Jon Matthews and welcome to ATS
I hope you find what your seeking and hope to see you soon in the forums



posted on Mar, 9 2011 @ 05:18 AM
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First of all, I thank you all for the warm welcome I received. I have lurked on ATS for quite a while and know that someone claiming to be an atheist usually evokes strong emotions and preconceptions regarding the poster's personality and moral values (an assumption that has always been a complete mystery to me). I acknowledge that human beings are as much hardwired to look for spiritual experiences as we are hardwired to look for sex or food and, in this sense, I consider it a futile exercise to campaign against religions or spirituality in the name of science. My atheism has always been personal, not political. I wear it proudly on my sleeve, but I have no interest in converting anyone to it. I am content with the one life I have and do my best to fill it with love, good will towards others and enjoying the great mysteries of nature.


Originally posted by Onboard2
I have had heated discussions with my 15 yr. old son concerning consciousness and what it is. He believes it's a product of our own biological processes within the brain and I believe it reaches much further than the brain, because at times in my life, I have tapped into an unseen resevoir of information and have no idea where it came from. I also believe we all have the ability to access that level of consciousness.


I wouldn't consider those two ideas mutually exclusive. After all, we are all interconnected over vast stretches of time even on the mundane microscopic level. With a simple calculation I could show you that when you take a breath, there is a 98.2% chance that at least one of the molecules in your lungs came from Julius Caesar’s last breath. It's a counterintuitive and probabilistic, but mathematically inescapable, conclusion.

On the more esoteric, quantum mechanical level, our interconnectedness is similarly well-established even within the framework of mainstream science. Fundamentally we are not well-defined objects. We appear as well-defined three dimensional clumps of matter partly because our senses limit us and partly because the probability for one of our atoms suddenly materializing one meter away, on another continent or in another galaxy is vanishingly small. But that's all. Vanishingly small, not zero. On the atomic scale, the probability distribution of matter that makes us "leak" to our surroundings, thus making us rather fuzzy and, dare I say, ghost-like. In quantum mechanics we would say that our wave function, or its square that is the probability distribution defining us, extends to infinity without ever being reduced to zero.

Until we know what consciousness means on a quantum mechanical level, we cannot conclusively say that there is no such thing as collective (un)consciousness. My personal pet hypothesis is that the consciousness is borne out of our brain mass, where, unlike in the rest of our body, the extremely high connectedness of the electrically conducting brain synapses results in the emergence of a single quantum state. Singular macroscopic quantum states have been observed in the nature.

For instance, a piece of superconducting material is essentially in a single quantum state. It means that the individual charge carriers, electrons, lose their identity and merge into a single macroscopic charge carrier that spans the entire material. This phenomenon is responsible for the infinite conductance: any change in the physical state of the system (for instance, when a voltage is applied) the reaction is seen _immediately_ (and not just after the charge carriers have rearranged themselves) all over the conductor.

Assuming that the brain operates similarly in a single quantum state, any change in the environment (macroscopic, microscopic, atomic or sub-atomic) immediately acts upon that brain state. The smaller and weaker the action is (e.g. sub-atomic, quantum level interaction), the smaller and weaker the reaction will be and it is likely to be buried under the noise from stronger sources. Visual or tactile feedback, for instance.

Now, if we come back to what I said above about our wave functions, one could argue that the neighbouring wave functions (say, that of a person standing next to you) can and do interact with the quantum state of your brain. This interaction is not limited by distance or time and the effects are immediate. Coming back to your original argument with your son, I would not rule it out that the wave functions of others (past or present) can have influence on your consciousness. It is highly improbable due to the weakness of the quantum wave, but the probability is not zero.

But as I said, this is only my pet hypothesis and unfortunately it cannot be tested (yet). Hence, it is fundamentally unscientific until it can be measured, repeated and has aspects that can be proven wrong. Food for thought, anyway.
edit on 9/3/2011 by Jon Matthews because: Fixed some typos.



posted on Mar, 9 2011 @ 05:22 AM
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reply to post by Jon Matthews
 


Hello Jon Matthews, and welcome to the Introductions Forum of the ATS community. For now you can reply to any thread in any member forum you wish, as well as send & receive (PM's) Private Messages to Staff only. Once you have achieved 20 posts, you will then be able to start your own threads and additionally send & receive messages to and from fellow ATS members.

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Take your time and enjoy. If you have any questions just ask.


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posted on Mar, 9 2011 @ 10:16 AM
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reply to post by Jon Matthews
 


Welcome!

I am a M.Sc. Eng. physics and I have reconciled myself with the paranormal. After I read the book Zhuan Falun and started doing the physical exercises my multidimensional view of the universe was forever changed. I am truly convinced there are countless other time-space dimensions existing simultaneously in both micro and macro-dimensions. Sort of the Russian doll or a fractal with us being at the center. There is nothing magic about it, and the human being has his third eye which can be opened and used to enter other time-spaces and raise his level gradually. It is just about practice and assimilating to the laws of the universe. Being in line with nature as a human being is the right way to go as I see it.

Anyway, I recommend reading the book Zhuan Falun in my signature below, it is no coincidence that 100 million people started doing this in seven years and then the communists banned the book and the practice of Falun Dafa..

/Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance is good, Falun Dafa is good



posted on Mar, 11 2011 @ 03:19 AM
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Hi Jon

Wow some introduction!! Look forward to reading more.

Nige



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