Quantum Physics and Consciousness

Does Quantum Physics Offer Explanations About Life After Death?

Have you ever asked yourself the question ‘Is there life after death?’ If you are human and not a search engine program, then the answer to my question is most probably yes. This article is not based on religious beliefs, but on scientific research in the field of medicine, near-death experience and quantum physics. What is quantum physics, you may ask. If you’d like a quantum physics definition made easy and the explanation for endless consciousness read this article. The most recent scientific research shows that there is life after death, and most quoted findings are those associated to quantum physics.

It’s worth dying to find out what life is.
(T. S. Eliot)

Throughout history, in all times and cultures, people have been wondering whether there is life after death. A research has showed that in the past fifty years more than 25 million people worldwide have had a near-death experience; for example, 600,000 people in the Netherlands, 2 million in the UK, and more than 9 million in the US (Lommel, Consciousness Beyond Life).

What is a Near-Death Experience?

What is the definition of near-death experience and how is it possible for people to experience an enhanced consciousness during a period when the brain displays no measurable activity and all brain function has ceased?

According to Pim van Lommel, a Dutch cardiologist who wrote the book Consciousness Beyond Life: The Science of the Near-Death Experience based on a study of cardiac patients, near-death experience is:

‘…the (reported) recollection of all the impressions gained during a special state of consciousness, which includes some specific elements such as witnessing a tunnel, a light, a panoramic life review, deceased persons, or one’s own resuscitation.’

One particular near-death experience (NDE further in text) caught my attention (fourth chapter – NDEs in Childhood);

A five-year-old boy fell into a coma and drifted in a safe and black void where he felt no fear and no pain. He met a little girl who recognized him, gave him a hug and said that she was his sister who died soon after birth. She told him her name and the nickname their parents gave her. Then she kissed him and said he had to go. In a flash he was back in his body.
The boy made a drawing of his angel sister and repeated everything that happened. His parents were shocked and in panic because they indeed had a daughter who died from poisoning before this boy was born and they never told him about her. They also confirmed that the name and nickname she revealed to him were indeed how they called her.
So, how did he know? His parents thought that the experience he described was just a dream. They were speechless when they heard he knew things no one had told him about before.

* * *

This was just a short introduction into this article and van Lommel’s book, but we’re going to focus on one particular part of his book – Chapter 10 – Quantum Physics and Consciousness.

This chapter may be one of the ‘difficult’ reads, especially for those who don’t know the basics of quantum physics.

Understanding Quantum Physics and Reality

Quantum Physics Made Easy

First of all, we should start by giving a simple definition of quantum physics.

Quantum physics, also known as quantum mechanics or quantum theory, is focused on determining how everything in the cosmos has come to exist by investigating the building blocks of the Universe. It begins at the atomic and sub-atomic levels (classical physics) which are known as the quantum realm referring to scales where quantum mechanical effects become important (nanotechnology). Quantum physics provides a mathematical description of the dual particle-like and wave-like behavior and interactions of energy and matter. The main principles such as superposition, complementarity, the uncertainty principle and entanglement (nonlocality) provide a collective view of the behavior of photons, electrons and other atomic-scale objects. The name derives from the observation that some physical quantities can change only by discrete amounts (quanta in Latin).

Unsolved problems in physics:

How does the quantum description of reality, which includes elements such as the ‘superposition of states’ and ‘wavefunction collapse’, give rise to the reality we perceive? (source: Wikipedia)

Predictions of quantum physics have been verified experimentally to an extremely high degree of accuracy. However, discussions and theories about quantum mechanics (or quantum physics) are very technical and therefore, not easy to understand. Quantum theories turned the classical conception of material world upside down. The most important concepts coming from the field of quantum physics are:

  • superposition – the actual position of matter changes continuously until the person who looks at it when it takes a fixed position. This means that matter exists in all its theoretical states simultaneously, but when measured, it gives a result corresponding to only one of the possible configurations.

  • complementarity – all matter posseses wave-particle complementarity (not that 99.999 percent of matter is emptiness),

  • the uncertainty principle – observation is impossible without fundamentally altering the observed object,

  • the measuring problem – generally described by a probability distribution that specifies the likelihoods that the various possible results will be obtained.

  • entanglement or nonlocality – spatially separated particles possess properties that are connected beyond time and space (note that this has been scientifically proven phenomenon).

Quantum Physics: Entanglement

This concept is the most important principle in quantum physics. It explains nonlocality which happens when two isolated, remote particles have an instantaneous effect on one another because they can become entangled. Nonlocality also gives rise to nonlocal space: a multidimensional space without matter or certainties, without the role of time and distance – but, with possibilities and probability waves, and nothing else. It is a timeless and placeless dimension, a hidden reality that, at the quantum level, has a continuous impact on our physical world.

Nonlocality can also be called absolute or true vacuum. Nobel Prize winners Eugene Wigner and Brian Josephson, both physicists and the mathematician John von Neumann argue that this nonlocal space could form the basis for consciousness.

Time in Classical Physics

Classical physics assumes that everything in our world happens along orderly and predictable lines. One of the greatest physicists of all time, Albert Einstein, said: ‘God does not play dice.’ However, Einstein also described time as relative and proved that time is not an absolute constant in universe. When his lifelong friend died, he said:

‘He has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.’

The revolutionary findings in quantum physics show that while there is a certain order in the universe, there is more to it than the physical aspect alone. This is where the mind, our thoughts and feelings, play a part in determining how the universe functions and how we perceive it.

Quantum Physics and Consciousness

Dead turned out not to be dead.
(Quote from an NDE report)

Scientific NDE studies show that various aspects of near-death experience correspond with or are analogous to some of the basic principles of quantum physics. Therefore, these NDE aspects invite comparison with the concepts from quantum physics. All NDE reports show that people ‘who died’ went to a timeless and placeless dimension. NDErs reported that they could be anywhere in the past as soon as they think about or want to be in a particular place because time no longer played a role: everything existed in an eternal present. We experience this timeless aspect in dreams where everything appears to take place outside time. However, the vivid reality of NDE is much more lucid or stronger than our everyday reality or dreams.

Researchers in quantum physics think of nonlocal space as a metaphysical space in which consciousness has phenomenal properties, based on subjective perception. Consciousness has a primary presence in the universe, and all matter possesses subjective properties or consciousness. Therefore, all matter or physical reality is shaped by nonlocal space and consciousness.

Does Quantum Physics Offer Explanations About Life After Death?

The right question is whether quantum physics apply to living systems. Quantum physicists differ on this. Most would agree that quantum physics describes processes in ‘dead’ matter (does this mean that dead matter turns out not to be dead), and that reality in its deepest sense in unknowable. Some of them still believe that quantum physics applies to both cellular and subcellular level.

People have been mystified with the power of thought for centuries. Latest research proves that there is in fact a connection between the mind and physical matter. The subatomic structure of a solid mass makes less than 1% of an atom size. The distance between an electron and the nucleus of an atom can be compared to the distance between continents, and the distance between an atom and a solid object can be compared to the distance between planets. Therefore, we can say that a brick wall is actually empty space.

Consciousness Drives the Universe

‘There’s an ocean of pure, vibrant consciousness in each one of us. And, it’s right at the source and base of mind, right at the source of thought, and it’s also at the source of all matter.’ (David Lynch)

‘Quantum physics reveals what ancient masters knew; matter does not exist! Aristotle’s philosophy led to the creation of the concept of substance. The world’s ills are caused by the belief that the substance of the universe is matter. This belief leads to a fear-greed dichotomy and a scarcity mentality. In fact, the substance of the universe is consciousness!’ (James J. Traitz)

People look through their eyes and think this is the world. But, it isn’t! It’s a tiny, tiny frequency range within an infinite energy field, with infinite frequency ranges, and basically it’s like a holographic television show. (David Icke)

It is the act of consciousness that actually creates the building blocks the universe is made of. I can’t imagine a universe that exists without us because it is the act of us observing the world around us that is creating, (that is) allowing us to create as we go, a ‘participatory universe. We may never find the edge of our universe as we are looking to define what this universe looks like… And the reason is, because everywhere we look – everywhere that consciousness explores with the expectation that something will be there – that exploration, that act of looking (or) observation, is the act that creates something for us to see.’ >> more in this video:

Consciousness Drives the Universe:

As a cardiologist, Pim van Lommel was struck by the number of his patients who claimed to have near-death experiences as a result of their heart attacks. As a scientist, this was difficult for him to accept: Wouldn’t it be scientifically irresponsible of him to ignore the evidence of these stories? Faced with this dilemma, van Lommel decided to design a research study to investigate the phenomenon under the controlled environment of a cluster of hospitals with a medically trained staff. (Source: Amazon.com)

You can look inside this book by visiting Amazon.com from this page. The book provides a more detailed explanation of quantum physics and consciousness. It also gives an insight into scientific discoveries following the question: Is there life after death?