Why would you take Stapp as exemplifying the state of QM? ISTM that the
decoherence program plus Everett and various collapse theories
represents the current state of QM.
Colin Hales wrote:
> Hi folks,
> This post is long…you’d better get a cup of tea first.
> Following my recent dialog with Jonathon on dual aspect.. the book
> “Mindful Universe” by Henry Stapp reached the top of my reading pile.
> I confess to having just had a major fume-out. Chapter 2 did it. It
> added to my mood of exasperation recently fueled by frustration that a
> paper of mine has been in review for 2 years and counting … a paper
> involving exactly the issues of dual aspect.
> My fume out was because Henry Stapp’s book is beautifully depictive
> and totally explanatory of the insane state of science that I hold
> accountable for troubles in the scientific study of consciousness,.
> It’s OK! I had a rest and calmed down. The smoke has cleared.
> It’s just that I am so fed up with what I see as *the* major blockage
> in science preventing a science _predictive_ and explanatory of
> consciousness. Not ‘/a/’ major blockage but ‘/THE/’ blockage. This is
> the big one.
> For I find that I am inadvertently in a cult. A cult whose clerics are
> physicists. I didn’t know I was in it. I was enrolled in it before
> birth and it has been around me, like poor Truman in the movie ‘The
> Truman Show’, the whole time. The young trainee physicist pups around
> me here chant the dogma…. The cult? Its directive says those who do
> science behave like ….’this’ …. It’s a cult where to do science is to
> do a certain dance, where the dance controls your mind. The golden
> rule? “Thou shalt only make utterances of the following kind and that
> is….<enter kind here>”. Before I describe <kind> I’d like to add
> empirical evidence collected by my own ears from an utterance made by
> my physics supervisor, which had me reeling in disbelief. Henry
> Stapp’s book just completed the picture and caused my head to explode.
> BTW I met Henry at Quantum Mind 2003 in Tucson… This is not a personal
> thing at all. Henry is great. I hope he’s in this forum, but doubt it.
> In 2003 I had no idea I’d be still thrashing away at this issue.. enough.
> Anyway…I had just outlined to my supervisor, a very competent quantum
> mechanic, the basics of a full dual aspect science. <aspect 1> = etc1.
> <aspect 2> = etc2. My supervisor looked up at me and said, in respect
> of <aspect1>:
> “/But that is forbidden/”.
> I couldn’t believe my ears. Since when? Says who? Why? Things in
> science can be ‘unwisely adopted’, ‘critically weak’, ‘arguably
> irrelevant’, ‘refuted’, ‘subject to constraints’, ‘inappropriate in
> context’ and so forth. But ‘/forbidden/’ ??!!???...as in ‘locked
> behind a closed door marked Do Not Enter?’ (or “beware of the
> leopard”, if you are Douglas Adams). What fantasy science cult is
> this? /Not the one I signed up for/.
> More evidence.
> I said I had a paper in review at Foundations of Science for _2
> years_. No rejections, not a shred of critical entanglement with the
> details of the work – again the topic: dual aspect science
> analytically unplugged. In my most recent communications the editor
> seemed as puzzled as I was. It seems that the subject material
> involved some kind of taboo!
> Yes, a /taboo/. That’s where ‘what ever it is’ is not wrong or bad or
> anything else… but we merely ‘don’t do that’ because, well, we don’t….
> (i.e. critical argument has left the building).
> And now, in Henry Stapp’s book I find the taboo laid out in plain view
> for all to see. It’s dressed up as the ‘Copenhagen Interpretation’ and
> it’s been adopted as a cult, which I will now outline by quotation:
> (see page 11).
> “Let there be no doubt about this point. The original form of quantum
> theory is subjective, in the sense that it is forthrightly about
> relationships amongst conscious human experiences, and it expressly
> recommends to scientists /that they resist the temptation to try to
> understand the reality responsible for the correlations between our
> experiences that the theory correctly describes/.
> Italicised portion by me. This ‘reality’ is PRECISELY the <aspect 1> I
> described above! Having already made major progress with <aspect 1>, I
> ‘understand the reality responsible’, at least to some extent…. ….Can
> you believe the audacity of such a statement? “In worship of the
> mathematics rapture, shou shalt not try to even UNDERSTAND the reality
> responsible…..” In what way is this distinguishable from an utterance
> of the Church to Gallileo?
> What the hell is going on?
> Here’s more… it looks slightly different but it’s actually the same
> cultish dogma at work… Gary Lisi
> Lisi, G. (2007) “An exceptionally simple theory of everything.”
> “We exist in a universe described by mathematics. But which math?
> Although it is interesting to consider that the universe may be the
> physical instantiation of all mathematics, there is a classic
> principle for restricting the possibilities: The mathematics of the
> universe should be beautiful. A successful description of nature
> should be a concise, elegant, unified mathematical structure
> consistent with experience.”
> OK not withstanding all the blather about the literality of maths, of
> beauty and the general dominance by mathematics goggles… the key words
> “… … … consistent with experience”
> This ‘theory’ which purports to explain ‘everything’ implicitly fails
> to explain ‘subjective experience’. It merely requires that it be
> ‘consistent with’ (contents of) experience, not ‘explanatory’ or
> ‘predictive’ of experience ITSELF. It seems that ‘everything’, to a
> physicist, is defined to be not the ‘everything’ that you and I think
> of as the ambit of science. They want to be 100% mathematical experts
> of half of a knowledge base. It’s not that knowledge of an underlying
> reality is unattainable or unknowable in some way, maybe imperfectly
> or incompletely.. but they literally choose /not to know/ or even to
> try to know. Nowhere is it apparent to any sane being that such
> knowledge is not approachable in some way. This is a */convention/*….
> And I hold it and only it, to be the real culprit behind the entire
> failure of science to explain consciousness.
> This exact same attitude can be seen in Stapp’s book: Read Chapters 1
> and 2. It’s all over it. There is an egregious misunderstanding. It
> confuses/conflates the mere explicit recognition of ‘situatedness’
> (recognising the observer is inside the system, like a voltmeter is
> inside the measured circuit ’) with some sort of explanation of
> consciousness! The result is that all physicists enrolled in this
> system have accepted a metabelief that the mathematics are LITERALLY
> REAL. “To explore the natural world is to explore mathematics”. Unlike
> Lisi’s statement, the natural world is NOT described by mathematics,
> nor is it made of abstract mathematics, it is described by SCIENTISTS
> and everything about description is justified only from that perspective.
> OK, enough. The dual aspect science (DAS) reality we inhabit:
> - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
> <aspect 1> A separate set of descriptions of underlying reality. (Eg
> an electron is 3456 instances of process A acting with any number of
> combinations of processes B, C, D adding up to 4567) so that the
> energy in a rest frame is Blah Joules. You get the idea.
> <aspect 2> is a description derived as an abstraction based on the
> appearances revealed within our consciousness. (Eg see any physics
> book on electrons – standard empirical models galore).
> <aspect 1> describes the underlying reality, which is responsible for
> consciousness! It is actually the only thing 'reified'. We scientists
> are made of it, not literal 'appearances'.
> <aspect 1> has been declared merely verboten!?!
> <aspect 2> is all the usual empirical laws. This _includes_ quantum
> <aspect 2> and <aspect 1> must be 100% mutually consistent. This makes
> <aspect 1> quite knowable.
> <aspect 1> and <aspect 2> are both ‘about’ the natural world. Neither
> are ‘literally’ the natural world. They are statements of abstract
> generalizations in respect of the natural world. Neither has
> precedence. BOTH have EQUAL right to empirical evidence (delivered
> into the consciousness of scientists)
> - - - - - - - - - - - - -
> Upon what crazy notion are we so fearful of <aspect 1>? I really don’t
> get it. If anyone can construct anything like a plausible story that
> renders <aspect 1> invalid. Tell me… for you’d be able to outright
> reject my Foundations of Science paper…something nobody else has been
> able to do. I could put myself out of my misery! :-)
> I cannot stress how seriously flawed I see the situation is. I see it
> as the end game in a 350 year old story where QM is an interim
> delusion just as incomplete as the classical view QM is portrayed (see
> Stapp) as having replaced.
> I refuse to contribute implicitly or explicitly or otherwise be
> involved in a science that is actually ultimately a cult. If my PhD
> can’t present a well informed critical argument of DAS for no other
> reason that that of a taboo… then that PhD, to me, is a club
> membership certificate in a bankrupt and deluded system. If I am
> expected to declare dual aspect science wrong then somebody needs to
> tell me exactly why – with real critical arguments and logic, not the
> dogma of taboo.
> The evidence for this situation is everywhere….Is there anyone else
> out there who sees this situation as weird? Why should any of us have
> to put up with it?
> I’d love to workshop this at TSC2009 in Hong Kong….Jonathon? Would
> that be something of interest? That might help. How would it hurt?
> Colin Hales
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