Mind and Matter: Is The World We Live in Real or Virtual?

mind and matter

Mind and Matter: Is The World We Live in Real or Virtual?

Many feel that the state of our matter (that is, our health) and the state of our mind (that is, our mood) are closely connected. However, this idea, which intuition might sometimes be inclined to support, is generally ignored by scientists when not condemned outright. As we said, science deals only with phenomena that can be measured, and intuition is never part of an equation. Many scientists prefer to ignore what cannot be measured; many others even deny the existence of what cannot be measured.

For most scientists today there is no connection between mind and matter. Mind belongs to the metaphysical world and matter to the concrete world. However, the discovery of quantum phenomena made all scientists agree that matter is, at the very least, an enigmatic phenomenon, and that the world as we see it has, in fact, no existence in itself. Indeed, the most enigmatic aspect of quantum theory is that the observer cannot be separated from the observed. Both are needed to “create” what we commonly call reality. If one is ­missing, reality vanishes. Without an observer no reality can be created; matter remains just waves, waves of probabilities.

Our Perception: The Result of Extensive Conditioning of Our Brain?

According to the physicist David Bohm, our perception of the world is the result of extensive conditioning of our brain through the ages. [Wholeness and the Implicate Order] This conditioning has created a separation — which he considers artificial — between humanity and nature and between human and human.

In other words, for Bohm, our perception is responsible for the fragmentation of our universe. He believes that quantum theory implies that this conception is unsustainable, and that the world must be conceived as an undivided whole in which the observer and the observed are one. In this unity he includes not only matter, but also mind. For him, mind and matter are two aspects of the same entity. Without going too far, too fast, could we not imagine, for a start, that emotions are a bridge or an interface between our body and our mind?

After the radio, which translates electromagnetic waves into sound, and the fax, which translates electromagnetic waves into two-dimensional images, came the invention of the hologram, which translates electromagnetic waves into three-dimensional images. Now there are machines that are able to further translate electromagnetic waves into three-dimensional images that can even be “touched.” Through an intimate interaction with a computer an imaginary environment can be created for an observer, who can then experience a virtual reality. In the most successful virtual environments, users feel that they are truly present in the simulated world. This simulated world “touches” them.

Is Our Brain a Machine That Creates Three-Dimensional Virtual Reality?

Mind and Matter: Is The World We Live in Real or Virtual?Could our brain, this very complex network of neurons, be such a machine too? A machine that creates, through its interaction with matter waves, a three-dimensional picture with shapes, textures, colors, sounds, smells, and tastes? A device through which wave packets collapse? A device through which one of the many possibilities contained in these waves packets becomes real, at least for us? Who chooses?

Bohm said that we are all observers who have created the reality we live in. One of the questions we could ask ourselves is whether the world that we might be creating at every instant is real or virtual. Because most of us have the same brain, we all seem to create a similar reality; we could therefore say that our world is real, because it is the “same” for most of us. However, it is most probable that a human being with a damaged brain would create/experience a different reality. Is his or her reality less “real” than ours?

Another relevant question for us is: Does this world that our mind might create from matter waves also include our inside world — this world we cannot share but which is certainly not less real for us than the outside world? Did we create it? How real is it? How definite is it? Can we change it? Can our molecules affect it?

When the World Went From Flat to Round...

From the beginning of Christianity and during the following centuries, the Western concept was that our planet Earth was a static sphere around which inaccessible planets revolved in perfect circles, the whole thing covered with an immutable vault on which the stars, not less immutable, were hung like pictures on a wall. The human race was imagined to be a foreign and ephemeral phenomenon in a perfect and eternal world. Only in the sixteenth century did the observations made by Copernicus (1472–1543) and confirmed later by Galileo (1564–1642) reveal a different reality.

Even though the earth had always been in motion and even though there never was a stellar ceiling, strangely enough this discovery was experienced as though it were a real cosmic event. As if their image of the sky could affect their whole being, people seemed, once the doors of the sky opened, to exit a prison where only their ­imagination had confined them, by general consensus. They felt free, reborn.

Fruits of this new creativity could be seen in all fields of culture: religion, philosophy, art, literature, science, and technology. Modern science was born. This episode of human history could be a good example of the often underestimated power of imagination and its conditioning.

Quantum Theory: Finding The Breach in the Wall Between Matter and Mind

Quantum theory was born only a few decades ago. It has hardly traveled beyond the doors of research institutes and hardly started to infiltrate in the public mind. This theory could launch the next big scientific revolution, perhaps even more earth-shaking than the Copernican revolution. This time it is not the structure of the skies that collapses, but the very substance of the universe, and along with it that of our own flesh.

After Copernicus and Galileo, we had to destroy, not without pain, the wall that consensus had placed between us and the sky. Could there also be a wall between matter and mind, placed there solely by consensus? At the borders of science, where theories stumble and speculations begin, can we find a breach?

*Subtitles by InnerSelf

Excerpted and reprinted with permission of the publisher,
Park Street Press, an imprint of Inner Traditions Inc.
©2013 by Françoise Tibika. www.innertraditions.com


This article was adapted with permission from the book:

Molecular Consciousness: Why the Universe Is Aware of Our Presence
by Françoise Tibika.

Molecular Consciousness: Why the Universe Is Aware of Our Presence by Françoise Tibika.Revealing the intimate connections between mind and matter, Françoise Tibika explains that conscious communication exists all the way down to the very molecules of which we -- and the universe -- are made. Françoise explores how each imperishable atom of the universe is intrinsically linked with all other atoms through their memories and the information they carry. She shows not only how each atom of your being is part of the greater whole of the universe but also how your thoughts, feelings, and state of mind are profoundly related to the activity of each of your molecules. Just as we are undergoing constant transformation by the molecules surrounding us, our own molecules are continuously transforming the network of which we are a part. Exploring the concrete manifestations of this molecular consciousness, such as intuition, she reveals how, through effecting conscious change at the molecular level, our actions have far-reaching significance in a universe that is not blind to our presence.

Click here for more info or to order this book on Amazon.


About the Author

Françoise Tibika, author of: Molecular ConsciousnessFrançoise Tibika, Ph.D. has been a research chemist for over 30 years and her new book looks beyond the microscope into the greater mystery of the universe and specifically into the connection between mind and matter. Born in Algiers, and raised in Paris, she moved to Israel in 1968, and for the past 10 years she has headed a research program on energy at the Institute of Chemistry of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Françoise has always had a deep interest in spirituality and mental imagery and studied with the famed kabbalist, spiritual master and healer, Colette Aboulker-Muscat, for thirteen years.

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