Oliver Thewalt

    Oliver Thewalt

    Theoretical Physics | Quantum Biology | Dark Matter Research Cluster

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    Consciousness, Computation and Understanding in Theoretical Physics by Maziar Esfahanian, submitted to Professor Oliver Thewalt

      Oliver Thewalt
      By Oliver Thewalt

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      Consciousness, Computation

      and Understanding in

      Theoretical Physics


      To: Professor Oliver Thewalt


      Maziar Esfahanian




      1. Philosophical choices


      Hidden unconscious or conscious philosophical choices have

      one of the most important roles in route of science, since we

      started to understanding universe and ourselves.



      However, these philosophical choices usually are not determining

      directly in the scientific papers.



      About Theoretical Physics some people prefer logical positivism,

      some other functionalism or instrumentalism or… and sometimes

      people using the combination of them.

      In my opinion behind each of these philosophical choices there

      were some pragmatic motivations that usually people forgot them

      during their research age. For instance, when physicists used the

      term of wave and particle in Quantum physics, actually they used

      some metaphorical concepts to describing some phenomena with

      some more familiar concepts to our minds and with minimum

      ontological assumptions. In fact, all of these concepts have root in

      our common cognitive abilities to understanding new things by

      assigning some older things which are more familiar to our mind.

      Even in mathematical abstraction the big part of our activities are

      related to our cognitive abilities. For instance, mathematicians are

      interested to classification of mathematical structures.

      One of the reasons is that our brain can memorize and analyzing

      things better with classifying them. Finding the more fundamental

      similarities and differences helps us to understanding things


      I think, forgetting the motivations of our philosophical choices can

      confused us about the meaning of understanding in science and

      push us so far from our initial goal in science. Let me quote from

      you [1]:

      “We are far beyond the physics the e+e- Collider can handle, while

      most work remains unpublished because it is unpaid!

      A circular electron positron Collider is not appropriate in order to

      handle a Quantum Threshold in a region of neutrality.

      Our mind is able to develop the theory by observing nature,

      performing an experimental setup by a measurement.”

      We spent lots of money to research about particle physics and

      detecting the new particles. However, we could spend a little

      money in other ways if we had other philosophical choice or at

      least didn’t forget the motivations of our philosophical choices.

      Sure, we need these Colliders, but also for understanding the

      universe and ourselves as a main goal of Theoretical physics we

      need to review our knowledge about our Mind and the meaning of

      Consciousness. After a long time, since the Quantum Physics

      started to developing, yet we have not a strong interpretation for

      this theory than can fill the conceptual gaps up and remove the

      ambiguities of fundamental concepts of this theory. For instance,

      when physicists talk about quantum states, it is not clear that what

      they are talking about, precisely. However, most of physicists

      accepted the Copenhagen Interpretation and go on without any

      doubt and review. In my opinion the root of this problem again

      come back to the philosophical choice. A combination of

      reductionism and pragmatism with support of mathematical based

      proofs is not enough to research about the Truth. I think we

      should review our knowledge about Consciousness at first and

      figure out how is the interaction of mind and matter.

      In this way even maybe we should think about our definitions

      about Mind, Matter and reality itself.


      Some scientists tried to describe Consciousness as a product of

      brain activities in Neural networks framework. In consequence of

      a rigid philosophical choice, these types of scientists are trapped

      to Determinism. Usually, Neurologist don’t know about Quantum

      Physics and its consequences about indeterminism and their

      desire to reduce our mind to the Neurons activities don’t let them

      to look at the castle that they made. Neurons are not in quantum

      scale and they are classical objects and if one just reduces our

      minds to the neurons activities so we have no Free Will and it

      means these Neurologists are doing what they should did

      according the written book of universe nothing more.

      Few scientists, such as Roger Penrose [2] tried to point out this

      fact and even Penrose introduced a new Consciousness Theory

      which is based on a quantum scales entities in our brains that are

      called Microtubules. There are some new theories about

      Consciousness more or less based on Penrose idea that

      generally known as Quantum Consciousness theories.

      Here, again we can see only few people among physicists and

      cognitive scientists paid enough attention to these theories.

      It is just an example that I talked about to describe recent

      situation of science as I understand.



      Consciousness is not awareness or intelligence, Consciousness

      related to our “I”, our first person experience about reality and ourselves.


      I think there is a strong correlation between the meaning of

      Consciousness and interpretation of Quantum Theory and the

      meaning of reality. I am not a fan of Quantum Consciousness

      Theory but I think at least this theory broke the taboo of speaking

      about Non-Neuronal base theories of Consciousness.

      My temporary philosophical choice as a researcher (or student) is

      something like Mathematical Instrumentalism.



      I think with this choice we can describe Consciousness in a

      mathematical framework that is safe enough to prevent

      ambiguities and also open enough to escape from trap of hidden

      or obvious materialistic assumptions.



      For instance of such a monistic non-materialistic theory, I want to

      point out the Conscious Agent Theory of Donald Hoffman [3].

      In Conscious Agent Theory, Hoffman tried to figure out how

      Consciousness is fundamental. It is about genuineness of

      Consciousness. He uses a metaphor from Computer

      Science to describe the universes and Consciousness in a

      unique framework with minimum of ontological assumptions



      2. Computation

      One of the bold effects of Reductionism on the theoretical

      Physics and Cognitive sciences is that some people think that

      everything is about computations. However, since Godel proved

      Gödel's incompleteness theorems, we know that for each

      arbitrary set of mathematical axioms there are some Undecidable

      statements that we can’t make a decision about their logical

      value. The stronger result proved by Alan Turing is a fact that in

      German Language its name was Entscheidungsproblem[4] and

      according what Alan proved there isn’t a general solution for

      Entscheidungsproblem and it means that even we can’t decide

      a given statement is decideable or not[4].

      In addition, most of scientists just thinking about Computation in a

      classical way, but we know that, there is a stronger kind of

      Computation that its name is Quantum Computation.

      At least, with a reductionist’s position one can try to models and

      understanding things with reduce them to Quantum Computations

      instead of classical one in Cognitive sciences.

      I think, in order to have a better understanding first of all we

      should change our point of view about meaning of some accepted

      concepts like space, Space-time and review some of our

      negative definitions like the concept of “chance” and its family



      My suggestion is to reconstruct these concepts in a special

      mathematical framework that is strong enough to figure out what

      we understood from Quantum Theory about reality and universe

      and the meaning of space, position(super position) and … .

      Also this special mathematical framework should be flexible

      enough to keep our classical tools of computation and beside of

      our new understanding indeterminism. This mathematical

      framework is called Topos Theory.



      I don’t want to talk what is the Topos theory here and how it may

      help. I just tried to show the necessity of a review to our

      understanding about Computation, fundamental concepts of

      Quantum Theory and open a new door toward study of

      Consciousness. This door is Topos Theory. Changing our point of

      view about space in this framework that has own internal non

      Boolean logic and is flexible enough to switch from one

      philosophical choice to another when we arrive to a deadlock.





      [1]. http://hixgrid.de/groups/profile/67436/theoretical-physics-for-new-energy-it-energy-cluster

      [2].Stuart Hameroff and Roger Penrose, Consciousness in Universe:A

      review of the Orch OR theory, 2013

      [3].Donald D.Hoffman and Chetan Parakash, Objects of Consciousness,


      [4].A.M Turing, On Computable Numbers with application to the

      Entscheidungproblem, 1936



      Maziar Esfahanian

      PhD student,Pure Mathematics,Università degli Studi di Torino - Dipartimento di Matematica "Giuseppe Peano"

      As you have pointed it out correctly, "topos theory" is what we are talking about in quantum physics: when we observe seeminlgy 2 or more particles or quantum states connected on a "distance" of many light years or more, locality and non-locality is what we are talking about (see also Violation of Bell's inequliaties), these are seemingly states at a long distance, but in an interpretation as speed of light as a photonic quantum threshold (no tranport through space) we are talking about dimensional topological transitions in a phase transition (in short) .. of ghost virtuals at horizons..... and as you have pointed it out correctly, this is very similar ot the "same" fundamental principle in "biology" concerning "neurons", because it is not decisive to conceptualize neurons but the phase transition within (as an energy matter transition).

      Exactly by this transition within locality and non-locality, space is spanned and starts to unfold in an n-fractal topological transition.

      Sincerely Yours

      Professor Oliver Thewalt

      Dark Matter Research Cluster