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Connecting the Actuality of Things in Space-Time to the Reality of Possibility in QuantumLand

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Event Series Event Series: Dualities

February 19, 2022 @ 6:00 pm 8:00 pm CET

Connecting the Actuality of Things in Space-Time to the Reality of Possibility in QuantumLand

Convergences in Quantum Physics, Brain Science, Philosophy and Mystical Thought

with Ruth E. Kastner and Gary Goldberg

Saturday February 19, 2022
9:00 PST | 12:00 EST | 17:00 GMT  |  18:00 CET

2-hour session

The session is live and you will be sent the RECORDING.

In their joint presentation, Ruth and Gary will examine convergent trends across multiple disciplines indicating a fundamental paradigm shift is necessary and underway.  The dominant Nominalistic perspective focuses only on phenomena that are detectable through empirical observation of discrete ‘things’ and ‘events’ situated in space-time, and sees reality as exclusively constituted as such, maintaining that potentiality is not real.  There is a fundamental ‘threat’ inherent in such a worldview. What is ignored—to our peril—is the underlying matrix of relational reality, an ‘Implicate Order’ that sculpts out the possibilities that are offered for actualization out of a primordial flowing continuum, a hidden potent realm of streaming quantum process that we will call ‘QuantumLand’ for reasons that will be explained.

As Hans Reichenbach insightfully remarked, ‘the flow of time is a real becoming in which potentiality is transformed into actuality.’   Through time-dependent process, the possibilities generated in the hidden relational quantum realm presage the physical actuality of our manifest phenomenal world.  Billions of years of biological evolution have conferred an ‘Actuality Instrument Panel’—ie. our physical senses, that allow us to function—to ‘fly on instruments’, so to speak, through this veiled reality—as  embodied, but fundamentally relational creatures.  

A further assumption of the Western modern worldview is the notion that all action occurs via ‘billiard-ball’ mechanism,  with isolated entities (ie. lone ‘monads’ without communicative capacity) traveling unilaterally through space-time, thus precluding the possibility of any real, two-way communication—ie. ‘trans-action’—between constituents.  According to this ‘modern’ perspective, there is no mediating factor in between entities and the only logic applicable is classical and binary.  The Laws of Non-contradiction and Excluded Middle are in full force, dictating intolerance for uncertainty.  Charles Sanders Peirce, over 100 years ago warned of the dire deficiencies of this rigid perspective which he called ‘Necessitarianism‘, with its championing of ‘hard determinism’, and the denial of so-called ‘generals,’  ‘potentiality’ and ‘free will.’   Necessitarianism is a ‘Yang-only’ understanding limited to the proliferative processes of generation, initiation, and creation.  Precluded are Yin-type selective processes: reception, response, growth and dissolution.   Yang involves an exclusive focus on ‘things’, ‘relata’ that then come into ordering relationship.  Yin involves the ordering relations themselves.

Modern Western science continues to be dominated by ‘Yang-only’ prioritizing of relata over relations, placing ‘things’ over the ‘connections’—the importance of which is minimized in the Yang mindset as being ‘mind-dependent’ and thus NOT real.   One important consequence is that an approach to field propagation that could shed new light on the physical meaning of quantum theory has been, for many years, overlooked.  What exactly is quantum theory trying to tell us about where we ‘moderns’ have gone wrong in our understanding of how the cosmos operates?   A viable alternative understanding places Yang and Yin processes into a configuration ofbalanced mutual complementarity rather than conflictual opposing polarities, best understood by recognizing negotiated ‘transaction’, of communicative interaction and informational exchange via relation, as real and of fundamental significance.   Drawing on emerging concepts in brain science (the functional specialization of the two cerebral hemispheres in accordance with the divided brain theory of Iain McGilchrist), in philosophy (the turn toward ‘panpsychism’—implying that everything is conscious) and in mystical thought (the referenced yinyang concept of Chinese origin, Kabbalistic principles, beliefs of indigenous cultures, etc), we develop the hypothesis implying that:

  1. Everything is conscious and has ‘free will’ to some extent (consistent with the Born Rule and ‘nomic grounding’),
  2. Consciousness is linked to agency
  3. Agency is linked to transaction understood as bidirectionally negotiated communicative interaction in which there is an actualenergetic exchange consistent with the principle of mass-energy-information equivalence ( see https://aip.scitation.org/doi/10.1063/1.5123794 ) between an ‘emitter’ and an ‘absorber’, with the Possibilist/Relativistic version of the Transactional Interpretation of Quantum Physics implying that the available phenomenal level of our actual experience rests upon a vast oceanic continuum of possibility out of which the creative, the unanticipated, and the whole of physical actuality arises through a process occurring in QuantumLand involving an exchange of ‘active information’ via a hidden interaction involving an ‘offer wave’ from an ‘emitter’ entity traveling forward in time connecting with a ‘confirmation wave’ from an ‘absorber’ entity traveling backward in time to the originating ‘emitter.’

This, we believe, is the ultimate message that quantum theory is attempting to drive home.

To see the Full Dualities Program

Ruth E. Kastner earned her M.S. in Physics and Ph.D. in History and Philosophy of Science from the University of Maryland. Since that time, she has taught widely and conducted research in Foundations of Physics, particularly in interpretations of quantum theory. She is the author of 3 books: The Transactional Interpretation of Quantum Theory: The Reality of Possibility (Cambridge University Press, 2012; 2nd edition forthcoming in Fall 2021), Understanding Our Unseen Reality: Solving Quantum Riddles (Imperial College Press, 2015); and Adventures In Quantumland: Exploring Our Unseen Reality (World Scientific, 2019).  She has presented talks and interviews throughout the world and in video recordings on the interpretational challenges of quantum theory.

Gary Goldberg obtained a B.A.Sc. (bachelor of applied science) in electrical engineering science at the University of Toronto and his M.D. at McMaster University.  He completed specialty training in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and subsequently sub-specialized in Brain Injury Medicine.  He has worked and taught at academic medical centers in Philadelphia, Toronto, Pittsburgh and Richmond, Virginia during the course of a nearly 40-year career in brain injury rehabilitation. He retired from active clinical participation in September, 2020 to turn to other personal activities.  He has sustained an abiding interest in how neuroscience, physical science, as well as interpersonal experience and systems of belief examined through a semiotic relational lens have informed his work as well as his understanding of the human condition.  He currently serves as a Scientific Advisor to the Pari Center for New Learning.


February 19, 2022
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm CET