Sunday, July 13, 2008

Is the Universe Aware?

I got to fess up here, I was watching the Sci-fi channel Friday. Oh come on, I was waiting for Atlantis and I like Dr. Who. As I mentioned last week, they replaced Charlie Jade with Joan of Arcadia, which is about a girl who "sees" God. Good? Bad? Not part of the conversation. But what got me thinking was a question she asks her brainy brother. She asked him does he think there is a God. His curious reply was something to the effect, "Well considering that the Universe is mostly electro-magnetism and it seems as though electromagnetism is aware, it's not inconceivable." That started the wheels turning - what did the writers mean by aware? Then I went back and watched that film about the double slit experiment. You know....electron, single slit - electron makes a single bar. Double slit - should be two bars wasn't. What they get is an interference pattern. Even when firing single electrons! What is even more curious is the fact that when they put a measuring device in to see what slit the electron is REALLY going through, the interference pattern collapses. The act of observing collapses the interference field. But the strange thing is the narrator said the same thing..... the electron acted as if it were aware of the detector and changed its behavior accordingly. I have always thrown out the standard mantra, at the quantum level probability waves collapse when observed. As we have been hearing, the Uncertainty principle says that we can not simultaneously know the energy level and position of an elemental particle at the same time. Truly spookiness at a distance. comments?


wolfkahn said...

And some people think of physics as boring. Anything quantum is simply weird and cool. And mixing in Metaphysics and theology, well best have a really good drink handy :-)

Shaun A. Saunders said...

Check out 'The Field' by Lynne McTaggart, and 'The Holographic Universe' by Michael Talbot (to name just 2 of many relevant books).

These are the books that should be on high school science reading lists.