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Faculty present on quantum mind
The M.U.M. Review
Maharishi University of Management, Iowa, USA Translate This Article
17 September 2007
In July, faculty presented at Quantum Mind 2007, a major international conference at the University of Salzburg in Salzburg, Austria. The conference provided a survey of current research and thinking about consciousness from the perspective of quantum physics and neuroscience.
Many neuroscientists are now realizing that quantum theory is necessary to understand the mind and brain, especially as it relates to explaining consciousness.
Maharishi University of Management faculty are beginning to participate in this emerging discipline, applying their deep knowledge of, and insights into, physics and consciousness.
Quantum Basis for Mind and Consciousness
Dr. David Scharf, who has a Ph.D. in the philosophy of physics, including extensive study of quantum mechanics, gave a presentation on the empirical and theoretical issues that point to a quantum basis for mind and consciousness. Dr. Scharf also teaches Maharishi Vedic Science(SM) at the University and has become involved in neuroscience research.
In his presentation he explained that at its current stage of development, neuroscience is not yet in a position to provide a complete understanding of the microphysical underpinnings of conscious experience. He outlined the inadequacy of the hypothesis that there are neural correlates of consciousness, as understood in terms of classical physics. And he explained how advanced physics can come to the rescue, and that certain aspects of consciousness, such as internal coherence and external reliability, are incompatible with classical physics but can be explained in terms of advanced physics.
Brain Wave Synchrony, Sequential Unfoldment of Natural Law
Dr. Scharf also presented a paper by Ph.D. graduate student Russell Hebert on 'zero-lag alpha brain wave synchrony' seen during practice of the Transcendental Meditation technique. This research is of considerable interest to neuroscientists who are studying the quantum mind. The chair of the session, the noted quantum physicist and EEG researcher Giuseppe Vitiello, took favorable notice of Mr. Hebert's results.
Physical Universe Condenses from Consciousness
Susie Scharf read a paper by adjunct faculty member Bob Boyer that explained that the unified field as a field of information and orderliness must precede the big bang. His paper referenced Maharishi Vedic Science to support an alternative cosmology—'the Big Condensation'—and described the sequential unfoldment of Natural Law in this context. He explained that rather than mind, orderliness, and consciousness emerging from random bits of energy/matter, it's the other way around—the physical universe condenses from the unified field, which is a field of consciousness and orderliness, through spontaneous symmetry breaking. This talk was also very well received.
Dr. John Hagelin* was scheduled to give a plenary presentation titled 'Realistic Superstring Mechanisms for Quantum Neuronal Behavior,' but was unable to attend because of other commitments.
During the conference Dr. Scharf had the opportunity to meet with participants, a number of whom are prominent in their field, including spending the day with Jeff Tollaksen, who is part of a research group led by Yakir Aharonov, an internationally known quantum physicist and leader in the development of time-symmetric quantum theory, with its important prediction of temporal nonlocality.
Copyright © 2007, Maharishi University of Management
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*Dr Hagelin is a world-renowned quantum physicist and Executive Director of the International Center for Invincible Defense in New York City, USA.
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