I am currently reading The Irreducible Mind (Edward F. Kelly, Emily Williams Kelly, Adam Crabtree, Alan Gauld, Michael Grosso, and Bruce Greyson) along with articles on quantum consciousness. I am also tackling Saltmarsh’s tome on the cross correspondences. I attempt to bridge various books on the topic of survival of consciousness, since it is by nature multi disciplinary and all-encompassing. It is, perhaps, the most thoroughly inclusive of all the possible topics for research.
I am not, right now, planning on writing my Grand Unifying Theory for these and other texts on the survival topic. My huge and overly ambitious plans for synthesizing all the information out there may or may not happen, and even if I THINK I’ve accomplished such a feat, I probably will have not. When asked to find the great commonality, most people interested in this field will defer to concepts such as “deep consciousness” or a substrate in the universe that allows for consciousness to continue functioning separately from a physical body. Some physicists interested in this research will talk about quantum processes that occur in the brain, but connect thought, feeling, memory and emotion to a non-local matrix. Again, we are stuck with the idea of ‘substrate’, ‘matrix’ or some kind of structure that would allow such neuronal processes to be ‘housed’, as it were, somewhere outside of our cranium.
What appears to unite most theories of consciousness as related to survival after death is ‘non locality’. In other words, our emotions, feelings, memories, and our sense of identity are not in a particular ‘place’, either in our brains or in time. They are called into being as choices or possibilities in a particular moment in time. All possible memories, thoughts, feelings, etc. are floating in a sea of potentiality. Nothing disappears or is lost; how we ‘call forth’ the elements of our psyche that compose identity is the great mystery. Where are my memories? Certainly they do not annihilate themselves as soon as I stop remembering something. I cause a memory to emerge through will, just as I can will my arm to move. There are, then, at least two elements to consciousness: the will and the content of the conscious mind that my will brings into being. This is strongly reminiscent of the soul/spirit division, the ancient idea that we are of two minds: one is action and will, the other memory, experience and emotion.
Quantum consciousness, as I understand it, finds a scientific underpinning for qualia, will, memory and emotion. This might better explain it:
For Walker, “consciousness is the collection of potentialities that develops as these electrons and these structures of the brain interact” (p. 237). Will, by causing the state vector to collapse in a particular manner, initiates this electron cascade, thereby selecting which synapses will fire and, hence, determining our experience and behaviour.
Again, it’s about our will to produce reality. Our experiences and behavior appear to be a direct result of our desire to “collapse the state vector” in a particular way; now, where exactly does ‘will’ come from is another issue beyond what I can ponder for today. More later.
Enjoy your week,