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Edwin Klingman: on 7/3/17 at 0:31am UTC, wrote Dear Luis Patiño-Cuadrado, Thanks for your comment. I'm happy that you...

Luis Patiño-Cuadrado: on 7/2/17 at 9:55am UTC, wrote And yet, here you are using ideas like continuum, distribution, logical...

Steven Andresen: on 6/29/17 at 9:11am UTC, wrote Give nature an energy potential and it will invent a Darwinian circumstance...

Steven Andresen: on 6/29/17 at 5:06am UTC, wrote Hi Edwin Congratulations once again on the success of your essay. And also...

Edwin Klingman: on 5/12/17 at 22:22pm UTC, wrote Dear HG, I don't believe that I stated anywhere explicitly that it is an...

H. G.: on 5/12/17 at 9:20am UTC, wrote Dear Edwin Klingman, I have read your essay several times and I am...

Edwin Klingman: on 5/11/17 at 21:04pm UTC, wrote Hi Lorraine, In the above post I present a picture of a real physical...

Edwin Klingman: on 5/11/17 at 21:03pm UTC, wrote Dear Lorraine, Thank you for taking time to think about my arguments...



Anthony Aguirre: "Our mission at FQXi has always been to push boundaries, and to try to focus..." in FQXi's New Large Grant...

John Cox: "Victor, I have reread your post and still find agreement. Realism vs...." in What Is...

Victor Usack: "RE John R Cox. You are quite right. Without the math we’ve got..." in What Is...

Anonymous: "hello Bob" in The Complexity Conundrum

shery williams: "Office Setup is the full suite of Microsoft productivity software that..." in Are We Merging With Our...

thuy lien: "The faction in Bannerlord: Battania King: ‘Caladog’ -partially..." in Collapsing Physics: Q&A...

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The Complexity Conundrum
Resolving the black hole firewall paradox—by calculating what a real astronaut would compute at the black hole's edge.

Quantum Dream Time
Defining a ‘quantum clock’ and a 'quantum ruler' could help those attempting to unify physics—and solve the mystery of vanishing time.

Our Place in the Multiverse
Calculating the odds that intelligent observers arise in parallel universes—and working out what they might see.

Sounding the Drums to Listen for Gravity’s Effect on Quantum Phenomena
A bench-top experiment could test the notion that gravity breaks delicate quantum superpositions.

Watching the Observers
Accounting for quantum fuzziness could help us measure space and time—and the cosmos—more accurately.

December 16, 2017

CATEGORY: Wandering Towards a Goal Essay Contest (2016-2017) [back]
TOPIC: The Nature of Mind: mindless math = projections on reality by Edwin Eugene Klingman [refresh]
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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Feb. 7, 2017 @ 21:24 GMT
Essay Abstract

Does purpose arise from 'mindless math'? Humans are self-aware and aware of their surroundings, thus conscious. The Darwinian Credo holds that consciousness emerges from increasing complexity. The alternative is an inherently conscious, purposeful universe. How does one decide this issue? The basis of physics is experience, so we analyze mind from this perspective.

Author Bio

Edwin Eugene Klingman was a NASA Research Physicist (atomic & molecular). His dissertation, "The Automatic Theory of Physics", describes how numbers and math derive from physical reality and how a robot would derive a theory of physics based on pattern recognition and entropy. Founder of three Silicon Valley companies, he holds 36 technology patents and has published two university texts, "Microprocessor Systems Design" Vol I and II. He has recently non-linearized the weak field equations of relativity, and is currently focused on analyzing the quantum projections discussed in this essay.

Download Essay PDF File

Gary D. Simpson wrote on Feb. 8, 2017 @ 04:17 GMT

Sound of bic lighter, followed by gurgling sound of water, followed by sound of exhaling ... So I was thinking you know, like maybe there is something outside the universe, you know, and maybe there is something outside that too, you know, and .......

Please forgive the satire. Perhaps you should have titled your essay "Tune In, Turn On, Drop Out"?

Having said that, I must admit that your essay is a very unique approach to the topic and thus far the only entry with any experimental basis. But will the police understand if I tell them I was conducting a scientific experiment:-) Honestly though, I do not want to give my demons the key to their cage. I might not be able to put them back.

If there is a consciousness field, are there associated particles? Does the field have a direction, like perhaps the complex i? Is the field quantized? Do humans have the smallest possible value of the field or do some of us have a value of n greater than one? If the Highlander chops off an oponents head, does he absorb his opponents field value? And BTW, Denerise Targarean is in the fire several times without getting burned:-)

Can the brain actually construct a physical logic gate? If so, how?

You are definitely correct regarding repetition ... practice does not make perfect, it makes permanent.

All in all, an excellent and entertaining rendition. Many thanks for sharing these thoughts. I think I'll pass on the LSD though.

Best regards and Good Luck,

Gary Simpson

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 8, 2017 @ 20:17 GMT
Hi Gary,

I like the sound of 'Tune in, turn on', but what's this 'drop out' business? You can tell from my brief bio that I have not dropped out of anything. And your demons probably aren't as bad as you fear, but I'm not recommending any action by anyone, simply discussing the experience of many in contrast to speculative abstract theories of mind.

Your questions are good. The simplest answers are: no particles, local direction, not quantized. Since the field must interact with our physical brains to have any relevance in the physical world, it must interact with matter in some way. That implies either a new physical field, or a known field. Only two known fields are self-interacting; the gravitational field and the 'color' field of QCD, and as I point out 'color' is a math projection we impose on reality. To be self-interacting implies in some degree to be self-aware, and one must decide either that a new field, never measured, exists, or that a new property of an old field may exist. As I note in the essay, the errors of interpretation that are been repeated for 100 years lead to problems with our Darwinian, Quantum, and Platonic Credo's or belief systems that conflict with the 'classical' nature of direct experience. That's a hard sell, especially to "neural-nets-who-understand-quantum-mechanics". Nevertheless, a self interacting field sourced by local mass-energy and momentum and capable of exerting force on local mass-energy is a good starting point for 'awareness and volition'. Recall that most ToE's ideally have all forces converging to the gravitational field at the big bang. A more complete analysis is found in 'Gene Man's World'. ISBN-13: 978-0-9791765-5-5

You ask whether the brain can actually construct a physical logic gate and if so how? Yes, as discussed in detail in my dissertation, (reference 5): The Automatic Theory of Physics. Logic gates are rather ubiquitous in the biological world as I note in the essay.

Of course everyone operates under the same 9-page rule when discussing these fundamental questions that FQXi poses, but it still means that we can only make the briefest attempt to illuminate these issues. I'm glad you found questions to ask and points to ponder. The references contain far deeper expositions.

Finally you are certainly correct that "practice does not make perfect, it makes permanent". Very well said and good to keep in mind, since such practice is the root of becoming a mathematician or a physicist.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Gary D. Simpson replied on Feb. 9, 2017 @ 14:09 GMT

"Tune In, Turn On, and Drop Out" was the mantra of Timothy Leary. He was an LSD guru during the 1960's.

If the consciousness field does not have a direction, does that mean it is a scalar field? If so, please think about that if you read my essay.

I think you will cause quite a stir.

Best Regards and Good Luck,

Gary Simpson

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Joe Fisher wrote on Feb. 8, 2017 @ 16:17 GMT
Dear Dr. Klingman,

Please excuse me for I do not wish to be too critical of your fine essay.

Only nature could produce a reality so simple, a single cell amoeba could deal with it.

One real visible Universe must have only one reality. Simple natural reality has nothing to do with any abstract complex musings about imaginary invisible “quantum projections discussed in this essay.”

The real Universe must consist only of one unified visible infinite physical surface occurring in one infinite dimension, that am always illuminated by infinite non-surface light.

A more detailed explanation of natural reality can be found in my essay, SCORE ONE FOR SIMPLICITY. I do hope that you will read my essay and comment on its merit.

Joe Fisher, Realist

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Feb. 8, 2017 @ 20:26 GMT
Hi Joe,

Thanks for reading and commenting. While we agree that one reality exists, I think you have misread my essay when you imply that it is based on quantum projections. The essay explains that the "quantum projections", while quite useful as a statistical theory in problem solving, are problematical as mathematical structures 'projected onto' reality, due to their abstract nature and due to historical errors in interpretation that have been repeated for almost a century, and are now "truth".

I've tried to understand your model, but can't quite make it. We agree on the essential simplicity of one real universe, but seem to differ in details. Thanks for commenting and for participating in this contest.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Joe Fisher replied on Feb. 9, 2017 @ 16:21 GMT
Dear Edwin,

Thank you for reading my essay. My essay is not my abstract “model” of the real Universe. Please reassure me that you understand my irrefutable contention that the real Universe must consist only of one unified visible infinite physical surface occurring in one infinite dimension, that am always illuminated by infinite non-surface light. Real simplicity cannot be abstractly simplified.

Joe Fisher, Realist

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Declan Andrew Traill wrote on Feb. 10, 2017 @ 05:52 GMT
An interesting essay, though why is a consciousness field required rather than consciousness as an emergent property due to a level of complexity and interconnected electrical activity?

What evidence is there for a consciousness field, distinct from the electromagnetic field from which matter is made?

Declan T

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 10, 2017 @ 07:07 GMT
Hi Declan,

Thanks for reading, commenting, and asking good questions. You ask evidence for a consciousness field distinct from electromagnetism from which matter is made. With all due respect I do not accept that matter is made from the electromagnetic field. And since the electromagnetic field is sourced by charge, but is itself uncharged, it is essentially "unaware" of itself, compared, say, to the gravitational field that is sourced by mass, but, since the field has energy, it has equivalent mass and can therefore sense itself. This is at least formally a basis of self-awareness. Most "theories of everything" believe that all forces converge to gravity at the big bang, though current theories fail to achieve this convergence. The Maxwell-Einstein equations couple the field to momentum density, providing a necessary ability to both sense matter in motion [ions in axons and vesicles across synaptic gaps], hence the necessary ability to sense and act on matter.

But these formal aspects, while necessary, prove nothing. That is why I think experience is key. If humans can become aware of the unity of it all, this argues to me that awareness did not arise from a piece of it all. It also argues for a field.

As I noted in the essay, the idea that ever-increasing complexity leads, at some point, presto-chango, to the emergence of awareness, is a narrative, not a proof. Convincing arguments, based on models of "what's the simplest possible example of awareness?", have been put forward, but in the end it boils down to "you pays yer money and you takes yer choice."

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman I

Peter Jackson wrote on Feb. 10, 2017 @ 16:58 GMT

You surprised me heading straight into the 'mind field' but did an excellent job getting through it unscathed - particularly under the influence! Yes, I recall experimenting with Grass and LSD myself 50yrs ago.

I agree with almost all you write, and with an underlying continuum energy field from which 'matter' condenses (the missing 70%) but below EM scale, which also give us gravity (it's density distribution). Q; Might this relate to the 'universal consciousness' you and many discuss?

We focus on the same point about repeating falsehood, though I find it in neural networks too. We also draw similar conclusions on maths but I hope you'll be pleasantly surprised by the rest of it (it's due up any time).

On 'Logic', do you agree with Russel etc; 'all logical systems end in paradox'? In the multi/interleaved propositional dynamic /quantum logic I discuss & reference that's reduced to fractal recursion once QM is reproduced classically. I'd be interested in your view on that.

I have other questions but need to re-read it first.

Well done. As an essay it hangs together & develops nicely too.


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 10, 2017 @ 22:42 GMT
Hi Peter,

Good to see you here. Yep, been thinking about it for 50 years! The field quality is built into the experience, but it was only a decade ago that I asked myself exactly how the field could interact with matter, and started making real progress, after working through computers, automata, AI, the usual. Published this as Gene Man's World ten years ago [ISBN-13: 978-0-9791765-5-5] and been working out details ever since. I'm glad that physicists finally realize consciousness can't be ignored, even if they don't know what to do with it. There's some good essays here, so I'm happy FQXi is pushing this theme.

The major problem as I see it is the Quantum Credo, the belief system incorporating errors that have been repeated for almost 100 years. These don't interfere with the statistical manner in which quantum mechanics is actually used, but they sure play hell with the interpretation of fundamental reality. The problem is that by the time one has "understood" quantum mechanics one is too heavily invested to let go of any part of it.

I hadn't thought about "all logical systems end in paradox". The 'physical' logical structure (computer, neural net) is consistent [not paradoxical], but running the logical machine with arbitrary input can easily lead to paradox. Stefan Weckbach's essay captures this using Godel (I quote him).

I'll have to read yours to understand what you mean by "repeating falsehoods in neural networks too". Networks process the inputs, and if processing symbolic abstractions (reading) containing errors, and these errors repeat over and over then the neural net eventually incorporates the errors (by building 'paths'). What else could they do?

Thanks for offering to re-read my essay. That is what I have to do to absorb dense information.

Looking forward to your 'classical' derivation of QM (if I read you right). You might want to look at something I put up this week on The Nature of Quantum Gravity.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Steve Dufourny replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 12:38 GMT
Hello Peter and Edwin, happy to see you again on FQXI,


Congratulations for your relevant essay about this emergent consciousness.Good luck in this contest.


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Peter Jackson replied on Feb. 12, 2017 @ 13:09 GMT
Hi Steve

I hope you put at least a short essay in to give your thoughts. You can then score Ed's too.

I hope you'll like the new momentum I've identified hidden in spinning spheres.



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Satyavarapu Naga Parameswara Gupta wrote on Feb. 13, 2017 @ 10:12 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman,

Very nice essay on the working of Mind sir, your words in Pasge 5… “If mind couples to the physical brain, it is not surprising that chemically induced states of consciousness will differ from normal consciousness: ” Some points I would like to discuss with you…

1. Brain is analogous to Computer hardware, And Mind is analogous to Computer software say operating system.... Probably the life to non-life is the failure of software...

Eg., We see in the "Brain dead" people, all hard ware is working, but software not working.... So if we can find out way to upload software again, such people may live...

We did some work on this line…

2. Another observation …. How can we measure consciousness? What is the relationship of consciousness with mind

3. Our mind forms a picture about an object, say about a pen for example, so the question comes what is reality actually? Is it that picture formed in our mind of that pen? Is that picture formed by the eye, or the picture formed by the hand which touches the pen? This question about reality is really confusing… Probably you have to define reality first….

Hope you also will have a look at my essay please....

Best Regards


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 05:47 GMT
Dear SNP Gupta,

Thanks for your kind comments.

You ask a very interesting question about 'brain-dead' people with all hardware working but software not working. I don't know enough about the situation to have an intelligent opinion. I thought I recently read of MRI scans showing consciousness in paralyzed people, in which case it is the output channels that are failing. But the situation is complex and I am uninformed of the details.

You ask how to measure consciousness. If, as I propose, the consciousness field interacts with matter (in cases of most interest, neural networks) then it is the combination of the field plus the logic (i.e., the hardware) that is most measurable as 'intelligence'. The 'raw' or 'bare' consciousness field apart from the operating hardware probably has no 'content' as such. When interacting with my brain, the content is as I see things. When it is my cat, it is as my cat sees things. The 'I' is local in identity, unless the expanded consciousness identifies with the universal whole, as discussed in my essay.

Of course 'what is reality' is an unanswerable question, but if the 'pictures' in our mind originate from external stimuli, then the internal representation may be formed from eye, hand, or any other sense or combined senses. The ions that flow in axons and vesicles that flow across synaptic gaps (i.e., dynamical 3D flows) are sensed by the field (and possibly affected by the field). I tend to believe the representation is very realistic, since there are so many ways to cross check things. It is the repeatability of stimuli that we associate with reality that causes the 'paths' (or patterns) to be reinforced in our brains.

I will happily look at your essay and respond.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Satyavarapu Naga Parameswara Gupta replied on Feb. 16, 2017 @ 11:56 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman ,

Thanks for nice and intellectually analyzing reply. Good.

Please see the reply I gave in my essay to your observation...

Best wishes for your essay


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Satyavarapu Naga Parameswara Gupta replied on Feb. 16, 2017 @ 14:07 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman,

This is the reply I posted as answer to your observation on my essay....

Thank you very much for such a supporting reply.

Many results were obtained using Dynamic Universe Model algorithm.

If you don’t mind, I want to tell you that the dark energy, dark matter and black holes are not required in Dynamic Universe Model. I want to tell you a...

view entire post

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Jack Hamilton James wrote on Feb. 13, 2017 @ 10:56 GMT
Great essay thank you. I quote two interesting parts from your essay:

"Numbers do not exist. But one fine day, feeling my oats, I kick and encounter a boundary or wall. Now there is self and not-self: 0 and 1. You know where it goes from there – separation and numbers: my hand, my feet, my birth, my mother, my blanket, and my cookies, all the way to my political...

view entire post

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Jack Hamilton James replied on Feb. 13, 2017 @ 11:01 GMT
Sorry 6.c. should read which match b. (not a.)

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 06:29 GMT
Jack Hamilton James,

I should probably read your essay before responding to your comment, but here goes.

First, thanks for reading and the thought you put into commenting.

I agree with you that there are very many ways to generate numbers, via both non-life and biological systems. I tend to think not of the numbers per se as being the mind, but more the operation of the number-generating-structures, and stimuli-processing-structures, as 'seen' or experienced by the local field in which these structures are 'immersed', and in which these structures are operating. As you point out, numbers have the potential to be compared. As I indicated in the essay, when the comparison yields zero (distance) we have identity, otherwise not (which you translate to 'differences of opinion'.)

Your equating of the mind itself to numbers is more Platonic than I am prepared to go, as I envision numbers more as being the 'content' of the mind. But perhaps I don't understand you correctly because in paragraph 4 you do mention physics interactions.

Thank you very much for reading, and for your extensive comment and for your appreciation of my essay. I will read your essay with your comments in mind, and may have further response.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 21:18 GMT
Jack Hamilton James,

I think you've written an excellent essay on the assigned topic. You consider how 'mindless math' could lead to aims and intentions (associated with life versus non-life) and analyze possibilities, including a.) discovery, b.) recipe, c.) recipe for emergence. You then discuss the interesting perspective that the emergence (internal recipe) is equivalent to a math description (external recipe) and physics/measurement type description (encumbered recipe) only at the time of emergence. Not sure I see the absolute necessity of this but it feels right.

The key question is: is consciousness inherently universe, or an artifact? You know from my essay that I believe it is inherent. 'Thinking' or 'intelligence' is an artifact, derived from structural 'logic'. This deals with past, present, and future, while conscious awareness is always of 'Now'.

Chalmers, once viewed as the Dean of consciousness, admits that he hasn't a clue, "but it must be physical". He notes that

"Panpsychism is not as unreasonable as is often supposed, and there is no knockdown argument against it."

But "For theory of consciousness, new fundamental features and laws are needed."

Finally, Santayana:

"All of our sorrow is real, but the atoms of which we are made are indifferent."

I wrote a book 10 years ago that I think you might enjoy. Gene Man's World ISBN-13:978-9791765-5-5.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Harry Hamlin Ricker III wrote on Feb. 13, 2017 @ 13:51 GMT
Hi, Nicely written and well thought out essay. What I didn't understand was how the essay was addressing the questions posed by the contest. That seemed to me to assume a Platonic view of nature as being fundamentally mathematics. In your essay you seem to be saying that nature is fundamentally mind. Am I understanding this correctly? My conclusion is that you seem to imply that there is a universal mind that is behind all of reality since you say this:This experience argues for a universal field, hinted at by John Archibald Wheeler and others in the guise of ‘a purposeful universe’, but never investigated as if it were real. It is.

So I am thinking that I understand you to be saying that there is a real universe of purposeful mind.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 06:52 GMT
Hello Harry Hamlin Ricker III,

Thanks for the comment and the compliment.

You say that you felt the essay contest assumed a Platonic view of nature as being fundamentally mathematics. Despite that many today are Platonists, that is not how I interpreted the topic. Inclusion of "mindless" in the topic implied to me that math is such a mental construct, it is unclear that math per se even exists without the mind. And if it does, then how can we derive aims and intentions from it? My answer is that math per se (as apart from numbers generated by counting mechanisms, such as telomeres) does not, in fact, exist outside the mind. And, more specifically that all of the many minds in existence (including humans, animals, and insects, at least) owe their consciousness not to having evolved from atoms into specific individual organisms, and then conscious organisms, but from the universal consciousness field that underlies all evolution from big bang to right now.

So yes, I am saying that there is a real universe of purposeful mind.

The details are beyond the nine page essay, but there are supporting details.

Thanks again for reading and commenting. I will read your essay.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Dan J. Bruiger wrote on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 20:43 GMT
Hi, Edwin

So much confusion is generated by the ambiguity of psychological terms. So I appreciate that you begin by defining how you use terms like 'mind, 'consciousness, etc. I also applaud your taking to task the concept of 'information', which is a term imported awkwardly into physics without due consideration of the implied conscious users of the information.

I would say that if you hold that consciousness is primary—somehow inherent in the universe (a fiield of consciousness)—then you allow that the the territory arises from the map (idealism): as you say, that "we can obtain physical reality from math symbolism." I don't think that's what you intend.

It is one thing to hold that consciousness is fundamental to our own nature as human beings and another to to say that it is fundamental to nature at large (the universe). It seems to be part of our nature to project everything outward.

How exactly do neural networks "couple" with the consciousness field? This seems to me the key question to answer in your framework.

Best wishes,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 22:13 GMT
Dan J Bruiger,

Thanks for your kind comments.

First, a small correction. You state that I say "we can obtain physical reality from math symbolism." You misread this. I say:

"As implied by the Texaco map, a temporal relation exists between maps and territory: territory exists in reality and then is modeled abstractly, not the other way around. The symbol-to-territory translation is physically impossible, lacking agency. This relates to the belief that we can obtain physical reality from math symbolism. It doesn't work that way. Maps have become too complex when we can't distinguish them from reality; they become belief systems or credos."

Of course you are correct when you say "it seems to be part of our nature to project everything outward." Yes, when we identify with the local individual, we are the center of the universe, and we project outward. If however, we can (temporarily) identify with the whole, there is no center, and we are not projecting. Of course the question is whether we can identify with the whole. Many claim that we can experience this. You pays yer money and you takes yer cherce. I quote Chalmers above on panpsychism and the need for new features.

You ask how neural nets "couple" with the consciousness field. Excellent question.

In physics, "couple" means interaction or force. Typical forces are F=qE, the force on charge q of electric field E and F=mG, the force on mass m of gravity field G. So we might hypothesize F=iC, the force on intelligent substance i, of consciousness field C, however I reject the idea of "intelligent substance", i. So where do we go? If we look further we remember F= qE + qv x B. That is we include the force of the magnetic field B on charge current qv. So we might hypothesize F = mG + mv x C, for the force of consciousness field C on momentum mv. What momentum? The momentum of mass flowing in axons and across synaptic gaps. If one plays around like this, one might come up with very interesting results, including the fact that the field energy ~C**2 has mass equivalence and thus couples to itself. Try it. See where it takes you.

Thanks again for your excellent comment and for participating in this contest.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Avtar Singh wrote on Feb. 14, 2017 @ 23:10 GMT
Hi Edwin:

Enjoyed reading your well-written essay. I am particularly impressed by the following thoughts presented in your paper summary:

"....Mind finds itself in a physical universe, experiencing varying connectivity over this physical universe. …... The background or universal state of mind is constant and ever -present. Since it represents no ‘surprise’ it thus disappears from awareness until physical changes in the brain cause it to temporarily be observed. ……..Many thousands of reports of expanded consciousness describe the "unity of it all" in one way or another. This experience argues for a universal field, hinted at by John Archibald Wheeler and others in the guise of ‘a purposeful universe’, but never investigated as if it were real. It is."

Your conclusions above are vindicated in my contest paper - " FROM LAWS TO AIMS & INTENTIONS - A UNIVERSAL MODEL INTEGRATING MATTER, MIND, CONSCIOUSNESS, AND PURPOSE by Avtar Singh. My paper investigates the physical reality of consciousness via integrating matter and consciousness described as the free-willed mechanism of the spontaneous decay of quantum particles. The paper depicts a constant universal field (Zero-point State) of Oneness or connectivity that exists as a complimentary relativistic state to the matter dominated states within the unity of a single physical model that also predicts the observed empirical universe.

I would greatly appreciate it if you could please provide your comments on my paper and let me know if answers some of the questions you have raised with regard to the current lack of such investigations of consciousness.

Best Regards

Avtar Singh

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 16, 2017 @ 05:48 GMT
Dear Avtar Singh,

Thanks for reading and commenting on my essay. I have now read your essay and agree that we see consciousness as inherent in the physical universe rather than an artifact, almost an afterthought, that emerged in unplanned fashion. If this were the case, it could just as easily have been that consciousness never arises at all.

Your focus is heavily on the cosmological problems of dark matter and dark energy. I have not quantitatively pursued my theory in this direction, so I cannot compare our results. My focus has been on the physical interaction of the field with neural networks of the brain, and of the field with itself.

As Ricker points out, physics suffers from "underdetermination", in which case two or more theories fully comply with all the verification evidence. This is exacerbated when the theories do not fully overlap in their applications. The significant thing is that we draw the same conclusion that consciousness is inherent in the universe, not an 'after-the-fact' artifact, nor anything that arose from 'mindless math'.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Avtar Singh replied on Feb. 16, 2017 @ 17:36 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman

Thank you very much for your time for reading my essay and writing thoughtful comments. I almost feel that it would be great to have a consolidated FQXi discussion/sharing group of experts and professionals who support a universal consciousness as the fundamental reality powering all biological life on earth, human mind, and cosmic evolution.

I would also greatly appreciate it if you could please rate my paper at your convenience.

Best Regards

Avtar Singh

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James Lee Hoover wrote on Feb. 16, 2017 @ 22:54 GMT

A quite impressive essay providing a clear and incisive breakdown of the meaning and process of the FQXI task at hand. Without stating my own process, I certainly had to go to a metaphoric height to envision the task at hand. I loved the term transubstantiation of math, giving a pithy description of the FQXI riddle we all try to solve and almost giving it religious equivalency. I see math as a formal byproduct but didn't cleverly say it: "The math is a formal byproduct, having nothing to do with giving rise to awareness, volition, or purpose."

Well done,

Jim Hoover

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 17, 2017 @ 05:59 GMT
Hi Jim Hoover,

Thanks for your gracious remarks. Glad you picked up on "transubstantiation of math" and I can tell after reading your essay that you view math as a formal byproduct.

You note that "the most pervasive natural force permeating all aspects of human experiences entropy. It perhaps has the largest impact on why the universe works and why it supports life." In this sense it is interesting that Lee Smolin pointed out that

" Gravity subverts ideas about thermodynamics ... gravitationally bound systems are anti-thermodynamic."

[See my 2013 FQXi essay: Gravity and the Nature of Information]

In this sense I found England's idea that entropy drives matter to acquire life-like physical properties interesting, but self-replication to support the goal of dissipating ever more energy is a big step. I'll study his paper.

You say "our pursuit of goals depends on the contextual occasions of life", which is compatible with neural-pathway-based dependence.

Your statement: "our bodies contain the stuff of the universe, elements born and reborn – sometimes, animate; sometimes in animate" brings to mind the Santayana quote I mentioned in a previous comment:

"All of our sorrow is real, but the atoms of which we are made are indifferent."

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Erik P Hoel wrote on Feb. 17, 2017 @ 17:24 GMT
Dear Edwin,

Thanks for your essay. I thought the approach of focusing on consciousness was interesting. But allow me to protest that I'm not sure it's necessary. It all rides on the assumption that the distinguishing characteristic of agents and their goals is consciousness. Consciousness is the "secret sauce," if you will. The problem with this is that there are plenty of things that act like agents that we don't normally associate with consciousness. For instance, you give an example in the beginning of a bacterium moving toward food. Another example might be a sponge without a nerve net, or plant life turning as an autotroph to the sun. Most people would agree that there is something radically different between a plant's autotrophic behavior and the purposelessness of the microscopic physics that underly that behavior. And in agreeing with this they don't need to posit that a plant is *necessarily* conscious. Of course, it may turn out that we need to radically reconsider what is or isn't conscious - but leaning on consciousness to fill the explanatory gap between purposeless behavior and purposeful behavior seems to me like bringing a nuke to a gun fight.

All the best - thanks for indulging my ramble,

Erik Hoel

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 18, 2017 @ 00:18 GMT
Erik P Hoel,

Thanks for your kind comment. You note that consciousness is the 'secret sauce' and believe it does not apply to such things as bacteria or a sponge, lacking neural nets, or plants. As you know I posit that a universal consciousness field interacts with neural nets, but I have in previous comments and essays been more specific in that the field interacts with mass in motion. In this sense bacteria, sponges, and plants are composed of cells; cells are incredibly complex organisms, with many moving parts (see Alberts, Molecular Biology of the Cell):

Flows through nuclear pores, Myosin, a motor protein that moves along microtubules, vesicles that flow through the cell, ATP pathways, DNA polymerase sliding along DNA strands, Helicase enzymes that can move along DNA and RNA, floating lipid rafts, the dynamics of endocytic vesicle formation, protein pumps, filament dynamics applied to both actin filaments and microtubules, cytoskeletal rearrangements, the mitotic spindle and cell division, RNA splicing by spliceosome, ribosome producing factories, protein folding, molecular chaperones, transcription of proteins, the list is endless!

There is no reason that I can think of to suppose that a universal consciousness field would be dormant until the organism develops neural networks. Living cells are incredibly dynamic organisms, and the consciousness field as I envision it operates on momentum density, not mass per se. Thus a field that embodies awareness and volition would have quite a playground in a living cell. Even 'logic' is there, in spades, but the consequent 'intelligence' that follows would be a different order than the 'thinking processes' that depend on neural net pathways. Yet splicing and editing DNA sequences, etc, certainly constitutes some type of intelligence!

Lacking such a field, one has to postulate almost an infinity of trials and errors, and any in-depth knowledge of cell machinery argues strongly against the probabilities of billions and trillions of atoms "accidentally" constructing the living cell, regardless of 'survival of the fittest'. And note that every cell that did not survive is lost to perpetuity; perhaps some of its pieces can be recycled, but the process of assembling them still has to begin again from scratch.

Thanks for reading and asking an excellent question that allowed me to treat aspects that were beyond my essay.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Don Palmer replied on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 16:38 GMT
As I read your essay, one of my questions came up with your statement:

"So physical mechanisms exhibit a purpose, i.e., continued existence, which, in case the physical mechan- ism does continue to exist, simply defines a sufficiently efficient survival mechanism."

My thought was that 'purpose' appears to start with the quality of life, rather than with self-conscious beings. This goes to Erik's point in this thread (hence why I am responding to this thread).

I like your response, as there is definitely 'something' that is different between living organisms and 'dead' matter. Calling it a consciousness field at least starts the ball rolling from a physics standpoint. To Erik's statement about 'bringing a nuke to a gun fight' - I think you answered your question by noting we may "need to radically reconsider what is or isn't conscious".


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 18:54 GMT
Hi Don,

I will respond to your latest comment below...

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Gene H Barbee wrote on Feb. 17, 2017 @ 20:33 GMT
Dr Klingman,

Once again you have proven yourself to be a bold thoughtful scientist. I appreciated your review of the Rovelli essay. As he said, it was meant to be a starting point (from two notions) but you took it to a high level. This was a tough subject for people trained on the three Credos you review, but I heard a lot of consensus in essays that we only perceive a small part of nature. As you said, we map our concept of reality onto nature. This is a poor discovery process because we have to unlearn what we have repeated to ourselves until we believed it. I am concerned about the word consciousness. It is being repeated by many now and we may have to unlearn it in the future. I prefer to call it an information source. My essay asks the question “are we part of a network?” A thinking network can create information. The network is conscious at our level and we can explore how far up it goes. Others would have to read vixra:1611.0302 to understand my information value 180 and how it is separated to represent nature. Treating nature as information leaves open the possibility of access, involvement in, and evolution of consciousness.

Your thoughts?

Gene Barbee

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 18, 2017 @ 01:35 GMT
Gene Barbee,

As I recall, we agree on the big picture, with perhaps a different view of specific details. You summarize so many key points of my essay in one paragraph that I feel guilty for using nine pages!

I don't blame you for being concerned about the word consciousness, as it is used in many, often conflicting, ways. For this reason I define it very specifically (yet ultimately subjectively) and try to remain consistent in my use of the word.

I agree that "a thinking network can create information", but I believe information comes into existence when a structural change occurs in a physical system, and not until. At first I hesitated at your use of the physical 'separations' you quote from Genesis, but, on second thought, I see that these structural changes sorta fit my definition.

I agree that the brain is primarily a neural network-based processing machine, and the many processes involved from sensory input to 'processed signal' involve information storage and transfer. None of this leads, in my opinion, to 'awareness' or 'volition', any more than the gears of a clock lead to 'awareness of time'. These are the areas where 'mindless math' reigns. So I tend to doubt the statement that "the overall response of millions of neural interactions throughout the brain leads to perception". Similarly, "our eyes gather light energy but our brain gathers information. This produces consciousness...".

If consciousness is "produced", it is an artifact, no matter how 'natural' the evolution of the complex machine that produces it. In this case consciousness is 'added' to an inherently 'dumb' or 'dead' universe. This contradicts the experience I discuss wherein many claim to experience the universality of consciousness, as there is no way that I can see that such artificial productions, scattered here and there on the earth, would in any way be considered 'universal'. You sort of acknowledge this when you say "the network that results in thought is highly improbable, but we know this occurs." In my theory, "thought" represents a product of intelligence, which combines the logic of the neural network with the awareness of the universal field. Absent the field, logical combinations of physical energy flows occur, and production and storage of information, but there is no awareness, hence no mental thought.

So I will try to study your viXra paper to understand more, but my immediate response is that you very well understand the many physical aspects that go into 'thought', but these physical phenomena do not give rise to awareness (as we know it) from dead matter. And the chain from particle physics to human thought is too long, with too many gaps, to ever be proved. This is why I posit experience over narrative.

Your well thought out essay is enjoyable, and reminds us in detail what a wonderful mechanism we are!

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Jochen Szangolies wrote on Feb. 21, 2017 @ 09:52 GMT
Hi Edwin,

I found much to like about your essay. Your notion that mathematical laws are essentially projections upon the world, rather than discoveries within it, is close to some of my own thinking---in fact, I believe that many problems, especially in the explanation of consciousness, stem from the mismatch between mathematical---and ultimately, computational---explanation, and the non-computational world. Thus, there appear to be these mysterious, ineffable, inexplicable, subjective things which there's just no accounting for; but they're ultimately perfectly ordinary parts of the world that appear mysterious only if viewed under the aegis of a mistaken explanatory paradigm.

But I have some more trouble with the notion of a 'consciousness field'. The idea has been proposed before, maybe most notably by Benjamin Libet (he of the alleged 'no free will'-experiments), but I simply don't see how to make it work.

First of all, it seems a bit of a non-explanation to me: like panpsychism, we just postulate that there's conscious 'stuff' that somehow adheres to normal matter. Now, that may be how things actually work, but to me, it would be sort of a disappointment---essentially, we'd be left with an unreducible mystery, a brute fact about the world we'd merely have to accept. But then again, nature is under no obligation to work in a way I'd find satisfying (again something physicists all too often appear to presume)...

But there's also more quantitative questions about the proposal. If it's supposed to be, at least in some aspect, a physical field, then it must interact with other physical fields. Now, you claim that the consciousness field is essentially classical; do you also believe that the other physical fields are?

If they are not, then coupling a classical field to quantum fields is something that's very hard to do---indeed, the general belief is that it's impossible, which is a major motivation for the search of a quantum theory of gravity. But if that then means that your consciousness field ought to likewise be quantum, it's hard to square with the experimental evidence: due to crossing symmetry, any field that interacts with ordinary matter can also be produced by ordinary matter, meaning that evidence of your field ought to be discoverable in particle accelerators; and if it's to interact appreciably, then it ought to have been found long ago.

And otherwise, if the standard model fields are supposed to be classical underneath it all, there's a heavy empirical burden to meet---writing down a classical theory able to explain all of the observed phenomena is not an easy feat. I think the best one might be able to do is something like Nelson's stochastic theory, or Bohmian mechanics; neither of which I would exactly call 'classical' (and neither of which, I think, has a consistent, fully relativistic formulation).

In short, you kind of want the best of both worlds of both dualism and monism: a special sort of stuff able to carry conscious properties (dualism), yet a unified framework for everything to interact (monism). That's a good idea on the fact of it, but I'm not sure it's really any less problematic than either of the traditional approaches on their own.

That said, I applaud your empirical spirit in this: too many people trying to explain the mind have never experimented with it even a bit.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 21, 2017 @ 23:04 GMT

Thank you for your gracious comments and for the thought you put into my essay. You perfectly capture the essence of the problem in your first paragraph:

"...there appear to be these mysterious, ineffable, inexplicable, subjective things which there's just no accounting for; but they're ultimately perfectly ordinary parts of the world that appear mysterious only if viewed under the aegis of a mistaken explanatory paradigm."

Not surprising that you have more trouble with the notion of the consciousness field… and don't see "how to make it work." It wasn't until I tried to see how to make it work that I took it seriously. I asked myself how the field would couple to the physical world (say neural nets). As I wrote to Dan Bruiger above:

In physics, "couple" means interaction or force. Typical forces are F=qE, the force on charge q of electric field E and F=mG, the force on mass m of gravity field G. So we might hypothesize F=iC, the force on intelligent substance i, of consciousness field C, however I reject the idea of "intelligent substance", i. So where do we go? We recall that F= qE + qv x B, that is, we include the force of the magnetic field B on charge current qv. So we might hypothesize F = mG + mv x C, for the force of consciousness field C on momentum mv. What momentum? The momentum of mass flowing in axons and across synaptic gaps. If one plays around like this, one might come up with very interesting results, including the fact that the field energy ~C**2 has mass equivalence and thus couples to itself. Try it. See where it takes you. [See also my reply to Erik P Hoel above.]

You probably see where that's going, so you ask if the classical field couples to quantum fields. I believe in a Bohmian (particle AND wave)-like theory that is briefly indicated here, along with crucial aspects of GR typically glossed over

The Nature of Quantum Gravity

This can be shown to be compatible with nonrelativistic QM. Relativistic QM requires all masses be put in 'by hand', is focused on 'point particles' and 'virtual particles' [the greatest fudge factor ever invented!] and leads to a 120-order-of-magnitude error or discrepancy between QFT vacuum and the vacuum of physical space. In short, RQFT is a bookkeeping scheme, based on Fourier transformations, that is an "effective field theory". So my focus is to derive the mass of the elementary particles from first principles (not there yet) and explain the three families of particles (think I'm there!). QCD is another narrative that I can't treat here, but I can note that the LHC physicists were predicting a quark gas from Au-Au and Pb-Pb collisions when I was predicting a perfect fluid, from which any number of particles condense in the form of jets. Guess who was right. But why treat one self-interacting field when you can claim eight self-interacting colors? [...the easier to 'fit' things with, although lattice QCD 'fits' do not impress me.]

The problem is the Quantum Credo which almost all physicists subscribe to. That is why I list mathematical structures that have been projected onto reality for almost a century, beginning and ending in confusion. I've spent the last year analyzing these structures and writing up the analysis. I think it will cause even the most ardent subscribers to think twice. I did this because I found no one will pay attention to a classical theory no matter how complete, in view of the Quantum Credo. But this is clearly beyond an FQXi comment.

So while it's not just conscious 'stuff' that somehow adheres to normal matter, it is a physical field that interacts with normal matter, and relieves normal matter from having to understand itself -- from gnats and mosquitos, to Einstein. This is perhaps disappointing to one who hopes for a complete reductionist answer, but that's not in the cards in any way, shape, or form.

To avoid the problem of dualism and monism, one would have to show that the monism "condensed" into material form with which it interacts as a field. If this were the case would it meet your objections?

I love your last line.

Thanks again,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

George Kirakosyan wrote on Feb. 22, 2017 @ 08:47 GMT
Dear Eugene,

I have read your work (as we usually say this, after of brief checking the material!)

I shall express my impression how you are hard worker, and hope you can understand that I just cannot somewhat to study the big volume of your rich references right now.

However, I can surely think already that you have presented one of nice work in the contest.

It is well formatted, the meaningful content is well narrated, and, which is more significantly to me, it seems earnestly by itself. I mean the author does not try to convince others something such, when he is himself not convinced in that matter.

I think also that we not need talk about significance of math, of natural laws, or about of fundamental principles because it will be the repetition of ours works what we know already and mainly we can be agree each to other, as I believe from your comment.

Coming to a contest question, we (or, me only) can be agreeing just, that the question is formulated somewhat not so correct (subtly speaking!) Therefore, we (or, me only) have no right to spend the time on this, but we initially should to decide for ourselves that this task hardly could have some perspective. We do not know even the nature of force that presses to us in our chair, as well as how is constructed the nucleons etc. and meantime we hope to explain how working our brain! Excuse me, I never will try do this, even I have there some definitely ideas on this matter. I will never sound on this matter, as I am sure this will empty occupation, as nobody can prove it, to accept it, or use it etc. I would say the things should have their time, - first need to build the ground floor, then next ones. Maybe I am so critical, but we do not have the real chance to solve such category of questions, as we do not have even the real basic natural science for today ….

Your essay is really highly appreciable in my view!

Best wishes

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George Simpson replied on Feb. 22, 2017 @ 15:49 GMT
Hello Eugene,

I enjoyed reading your essay, an impressive product.

I wonder if you have considered the possibility that there is not a "Mind Field" but rather an "Ideas Field". I my essay "Reality ReEnvisaged" I set out the argument that minds are living patterns of information that inhabit the interface between the physical world and the "Ideas Field".

Please have a look at it, I think we can have a rich dialogue.

Best regards,

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 26, 2017 @ 00:54 GMT
Dear George Kirakosyan,

I'm very happy that you enjoyed my essay (as I did yours) and agree that there is no need to repeat here the many points we agree upon which are expanded upon in our essays. You make the point we do not even know the nature of the force that presses us in a chair, nor the nature of the nucleons, yet we would explain the brain! In this regard I would also point out that life is almost defined (from slime mold to human) by its ability to sense and work against gravity.

It is good so many FQXi essayists seem to be finding the same truth, albeit seen from different perspectives.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 26, 2017 @ 01:02 GMT
Dear George Simpson,

You say that, in your model, "minds feed on, create, manipulate, and act on ideas and concepts. Ideas and concepts are passive, minds act on the Ideas field and act on the physical world." You also seem to believe matter is built on information. I do not believe "information" exists in any material sense, but information is registered when energy/momentum causes a structural change in a material system, and even then can only be interpreted or given meaning via a given context or through code-books. Unless and until interpreted, it's only energy flowing through space and rearranging material structure.

You envisage reality as a three-part system, consisting of the physical world, the world of ideas and concepts, and minds connecting the two. It's unclear how the brain fits into this. Whereas you define mind as an information pattern, I believe the information pattern is found in the neural network. I see the mind as possessor of consciousness, which I propose exists in a universal field that physically interacts with matter in motion. You seem to be saying something similar when you say the individual mind takes its shape from "idea gestures" which seem to originate in the brain. You posit the mind gives physical form to concepts, whereas I propose the form is derived from physical flows in the brain, sensed by the consciousness field.

So while somewhat related, I don't see the ideas field congruent with consciousness field. Usually, when we go so far on a given path, it's hard to leave the path. Unless I've missed it you do not specify 'how' the ideas field interacts with matter.

Best regards, and congratulations on tackling the 'hard' problems.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Vladimir Rogozhin wrote on Feb. 27, 2017 @ 17:35 GMT
Dear Edwin,

Very deep, clear analysis, important ideas and conclusions to search for ways to overcome the crisis of understanding in fundamental science .

Yours faithfully,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 27, 2017 @ 22:27 GMT
Dear Vladimir,

You begin,"But how can we see the world in integrality, the world as whole?" and note that the ontological meta-paradigm, Universum as a whole, has been pushed into "philosophical backyards" of science. I agree that "the physics of particles informs us, strictly speaking, on fundamental structures of the nature, but not on fundamental particles." Yes, the 'particles' are much more abstract than 50 years ago. This is extremely well stated and agrees with my observation that physicists have projected mathematical structures onto reality. Of course the great scientists were religious. They were not one-dimensional, merely focused on 'points' as convenient simplifying concepts, that facilitated applications of set theory, etc. This is probably as far away as one can get from the "The Self-Aware Universe".

I always enjoy your essays, focused on the reality of consciousness versus the artifice of interpreting symbolic structures as reality.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Alexey/Lev Burov wrote on Feb. 28, 2017 @ 01:31 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I enjoyed reading your essay, courageously and mindfully challenging the mainstream dogmas. To your worldview, I have some questions. First, assuming it is correct, what or who may be responsible for the laws of nature, which are such highly specific things? Since your 'mind field' is just a part of nature, it cannot be responsible for the whole, can it? If it still can, what would be the difference between that mind field and transcendental Creator? I am giving you a high score. Your comments to my essay are very welcome.

All the best,

Alexey Burov.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 28, 2017 @ 04:41 GMT
Hi Alexey Burov,

The problem with Cartesian dualism, as you note, is the lack of interaction between material and mental. For a number of reasons I concluded that consciousness is best represented as a field, but it was only when I asked myself how the field interacts with my material body that I could start investigating possibilities. For example should the field interact with mass, with charge, or with some undiscovered attribute? Is the field undiscovered, or is it simply that this attribute of a known field was never imagined or tested. Local or universal?

You discuss a young man who "takes it on faith that all that is called discovery is, in the end, just chemistry of his brain…" In other words, it is devalued upfront, a mere 'hiccup' in the atoms. After reading this I looked up my JBS Haldane quote to give you, then read to the end of the paragraph where you present the quote! However, I don't believe you quoted CS Lewis, so here goes:

"Atheism turns out to be too simple. If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning."

[Having finished your paper, I see that you reference CS Lewis, but I don't believe you quoted him.] Anyway, you certainly put your finger on a big part of the problem. Meaninglessness is meaningless. As always, yer pays yer money and yer takes yer cherce, but who would choose meaninglessness? You label it "cognitive suicide", and you are right. Even people who claim to believe in such sterility, do not live as if they believe it.

You claim that "every error should leave the thinker a possibility of correction." As you know, I discuss errors that have propagated through GR and QM for 100 years. The problem (for a young man) is that correcting such errors offends all those heavily invested in the errors [unknowingly, until you spill the beans] and this is not career enhancing. (Probably why the most productive people I know in this matter are retired.)

You mentioned that Thomas Nagel pins his hopes on panpsychicism. Chalmers is agnostic but states "panpsychicism is not as unreasonable as is often supposed, and there is no knockdown argument against it."

You ask, "if my 'mind field' is just a part of nature, it cannot be responsible for the whole, can it?" That depends on how far the field can be pushed, and I have pushed quite far [far beyond what an essay or short comments can relate.] However to be accepted, certain current interpretations [due to repeated errors] must be cleared up, so that is where my current efforts lie.

Thanks for your excellent essay; very impressive.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Alexey/Lev Burov replied on Feb. 28, 2017 @ 05:49 GMT

Thanks again. With you, I have a special option to discuss very delicate questions. One of those: I cannot agree with Chalmers that "panpsychicism is not as unreasonable as is often supposed, and there is no knockdown argument against it." The key question is one we stressed in our criticism of Thomas Nagel: "However, were mentality but a part of nature, by what means could this part be responsible for the laws of the whole? In what way could it install and maintain them through the Big Bang and up to now? Nagel does not see that such a powerful and unshakable authority over nature implies the transcendence of this power." Apparently, Chalmers does not see that either.



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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 28, 2017 @ 06:44 GMT

Chalmers is not a physicist, I don't recall what Nagel is. As a physicist I began with a Self-interaction Principle, from which the operative laws [Newton, Klein-Gordon, etc.] are derived. It is the 'Master law' that generates the laws you are concerned about. But we have terminology issues. In my terminology "mentality" is consciousness plus the logic circuits [typically the brain]. This is not what is responsible for the laws of the whole. The self-interaction of the field does not "install and maintain them", it just self-interacts, at all scales.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Andrew Beckwith wrote on Feb. 28, 2017 @ 05:36 GMT

The diagram shows the

transformation of measurement data into best feature vectors, and the dynamical processes that produce

eigenvalues, generally taken as representative of the object system. Feature extraction based on distances

obtained from numbers is constructed from physical structures that can function as gates, implementing

logic operations, which can be combined to count to produce integers and to add to produce distance

maps and then compare distance maps to get difference maps (gradients) from measurements. The nature

of the process of making math maps is thus rooted in the physical universe.

end of quote

A question your last sentence raises. Do you think that the processing generalized mathematical mappings mirrors reality? Seriously ?

You are implying that the math mappings themselves are closedly linked to reality. Is this with respect to eignvalues and eignvectors ?

Or do you mean maps in a more general sense ?

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Feb. 28, 2017 @ 06:30 GMT
Ha! Someone does read the endnotes!

Thanks Andrew.

The problem I addressed was how a robot, making raw data measurements, could build a theory of physics. It would begin with no preconceptions or categories ['baggage' in Tegmark's terminology] it would have eyes, force sensors, effectors (to kick a rock, say, and track it) but would not recognize any particular aspect of reality.

I showed that, given realistic distributions of numbers (raw data such as reflectance or illumination, but derivatives also, such as velocity or acceleration) the measurement numbers, (in the plane at left) can be clustered via 'inter-set' and 'intra-set' distances [described in my reference 5] which reduce the N numbers to n clusters. Then a minimum-error Karhunen-Loeve or a maximum-entropy mapping can reduce the n features to m 'best' features, where m is less than n. This yields a feature vector or 'eigenvector', which is "generally taken to be representative of the system."

I made no assumptions other than that the measurement numbers were not uniformly distributed (which would defeat the 'clustering' operations.)

The robot, his sensors and effectors and computers that process the numbers, were real, the measured phenomena were assumed real, so every aspect of the system was rooted in the physical universe. I taught the robot how to treat the measurement numbers, but I did not teach it categories, features, etc. These are derived automatically by the process I describe. Of course if one limits oneself to, say, atomic spectra, then the 'eigenvectors' will be more easily mapped to our current concepts, but the process works with any measurements, including those randomly (but repeatedly) performed.

Yes, the mappings represent reality. They don't represent it as well as thousands of conscious physicists, working over generations and building on previous work, can represent reality, but, for a stupid robot, they yield a primordial "theory" of physics.

Thanks for reading the endnotes and asking excellent questions.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Member Rodolfo Gambini wrote on Mar. 1, 2017 @ 13:41 GMT
Klingman throughout the essay seems to hold a regularist point of view about the nature of physical law that we share. For instance:

"Math maps projected on the physical territory form the substance of physics.

I have awareness of only one physical universe, but I have many maps of the universe, and I use experience of the physical universe to qualify the maps."

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 2, 2017 @ 02:17 GMT
Dear Rudolfo Gambini,

Thank you for reading and commenting on my essay.

You discuss an event ontology and the possibility that events in the brain can be accessed physically in a third person sense, but also mentally in a first-person sense as perceptions. Is this 'mental' access occasioned by the neural network itself, or by physical field, or what? As you know, I postulate a physical field that possesses the attribute of awareness: awareness of itself (hence Yang-Mills type non-linearity) and awareness of momentum/energy density. This postulate actually takes one quite far in a physical world that includes consciousness and intelligence in myriad entities.

As you note, I am 'regularist' in the sense that I believe we project structure onto regularities of nature. The 'necessitarian' interprets the structural projections in terms of 'laws' governing system evolution, despite that QM is only a statistical bookkeeping system that depends from the evident universality of the partition function.

One would think that the underdetermination that is obvious from the existence of five or more 'interpretations' of quantum mechanics, would give pause to Quantum Credo-ists, but this is met head-on with "shut up and calculate". As a means of solving specific problems, this may be good advice. As a means of determining ontological reality, not so good.

You note that in a universe that is life-friendly and phenomenic in character one can always find purpose in its inhabitants, and this may imply "a universe capable of observing itself". With a consciousness field it is almost a foregone conclusion that local observations of self will evolve. If, instead, only a possibility exists that life and neural networks will evolve, given sufficient time, the possibility would also seem to exist that such would never happen, leading to absurdity and nihilism.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Gary D. Simpson wrote on Mar. 2, 2017 @ 02:24 GMT

If you have not already done so, I recommend that you read the essay by Ronald Racicot.

Best Regards and Good Luck,

Gary Simpson

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 3, 2017 @ 22:30 GMT
Gary, Thanks. I shall read Racicot's essay. Edwin Eugene Klingman

Victor Usack wrote on Mar. 3, 2017 @ 18:28 GMT

Underlying this work is the implicit realist credo of separate observer holding a (more or less) accurate reflection of the actual external reality. No doubt this has worked well to effect technology and we may like to extend this scope to the big ontological questions posed by the essay theme. However, consensus we have not and the divide between fact and opinion bears witness to something more. In this important work you allude to the properties of the mind essential to extending the correlation of experience and maps to the ontological scope. Thank you.


P.S. I note no mention here of Rupert Sheldrake’s Morphic Resonance theory.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 3, 2017 @ 22:25 GMT

The best essays cannot be fully appreciated in one reading. In response to your enthusiastic appreciation of my essay, I have re-read your own, and realized again that yours is a masterpiece. Thank you for reading my essay, but thanks most for writing your own. I felt that our essays support each other on my first reading; I'm glad you feel the same. You have picked worthwhile goals for your retirement.

My best wishes for you,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Robert Bennett wrote on Mar. 4, 2017 @ 19:31 GMT
Did enjoy your essay from the dissident side, Edwin… It must be that great minds think alike…or else de gustibus non disputandum… Anything that gets my mind in gear is worthwhile.

My comments on your ideas follows:

…The Darwinian Credo holds that consciousness emerges from increasing complexity. …….

My essay did not deal with consciousness…the...

view entire post

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 5, 2017 @ 04:16 GMT
Dear Robert Bennett,

Clearly it got your mind in gear, which is the best part of these FQXi contests.

Thanks for your extended comment. I will study the various ideas you've put forth here, but won't try to respond point by point. Between our essays and our extensive comments to each other, we know that our ideas are pretty simpatico. I very much enjoyed reading your essay and interacting with you.

Best regards

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Laurence Hitterdale wrote on Mar. 5, 2017 @ 02:13 GMT
Hello Edwin,

Thank you for a stimulating essay. Let me see how close I can come to understanding your main ideas. In my interpretation of what you have to say, the consciousness field is a primordial reality. A single universal consciousness field is prior to separate and distinct individual consciousnesses. The later are perhaps derivative from the universal consciousness field, or perhaps they are mistaken representations of the consciousness field. I am not quite clear about that. The physical world is, like the consciousness field, a primordial reality. It is hard to know what physical reality in itself is like. What we think of as physical theories, such as quantum theory, are not physical reality itself, but maps of parts of physical reality. Mathematical structures are not inherent in physical reality, but are projected onto physical reality by consciousness. So, asking how mindless mathematics gives rise to mental intentions and purposes is to ask the question from the wrong direction. Mathematics does not produce mind. Rather, mind produces mathematics and projects some of mathematics onto nature. I hope that this is at least somewhat close to what you are saying.

Laurence Hitterdale

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 5, 2017 @ 04:00 GMT
Hi Laurence,

Why write a nine page essay when you captured it so well in a paragraph?

Yes, I postulate the consciousness field as primordial, embodying the attributes of consciousness: awareness plus volition. The field in and of itself, while physical, would seem to harbor nothing but a vague self-awareness, certainly no 'thoughts' or logic. After investigating possible dynamics, I've concluded that the most feasible interaction with matter is through sensing momentum density, and applying force to matter in motion. With this simple capability dead rocks remain dead rocks; the field is effectively unaware of dead matter. But the myriad flows inside living cells are sensed by the local field and potentially 'guided'. Thus, while extensive awareness of the details of molecular biology of the cell, embryo-genesis, and the immune system convince many that evolution is exceedingly unlikely to produce life as we know it, the locally self-aware 'organism-plus-field' has a thumb on the scales, so to speak. Thoughts and memories, etc are bound to the brain, but awareness of thinking, and of all else we associate with consciousness is effectively attributed to the field, which 'reads' the dynamic 'map' of reality that is the brain.

By the time neural nets, with inherent logic ability and pattern recognition ability, have evolved, the local field, always aware of Now, is coupled to flows which are coupled through sense organs to the environment, and hence the field, inherently self-aware, is aware of the local individual and his/her environment. The awareness is associated with the field, but the intelligence (thinking) depends on the logical network the field is coupled to, and specifically to the 'paths' that have been learned by the brain through repetition. There are far more details supporting this theory than can be included in a comment, and the essay had to deal with so many other issues. A key detail is that momentum density stimulates or enhances the field, essentially inducing greater self-awareness, thus associating the local field with the local brain, so that the effect is an individual conscious of himself, and 'anchoring' the enhanced local field density to the same individual over time.

There are un-countable 'aware' organisms on earth, from gnats to mankind. This would argue that, if consciousness 'emerges' from matter, it must be a fairly simple phenomenon, since it's everywhere. But sophisticated searches for such "minimal mechanisms" have come up empty. A primordial field solves this problem, and also means that consciousness is inherent in the universe, not an artifact or an after-thought. And it jives with the experience of consciousness reported by many thousands of individuals, as related in the essay.

Thanks for a close reading and an excellent summarization.

My best regards

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Laurence Hitterdale replied on Mar. 24, 2017 @ 17:07 GMT
Hi Edwin,

At least in my experience, it is possible to write a summarizing paragraph only after the essay, whether written by someone else or by oneself, is already available to show the details to be summarized.

Thanks for these additional statements about the importance of the concept of a field for the understanding of consciousness.

Best wishes.

Laurence Hitterdale

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Wilhelmus de Wilde wrote on Mar. 5, 2017 @ 16:29 GMT
Dear Edwin,

Good to meet again here on FQXi.

Congratulations with your essay. I was certainly touched by the LSD quotes you mentioned because in my student time (1968) I also experienced these reality insight intensivating and changing realities.

It is as you mention : "The observer feels GRAVITY", but trying to explain gravity is just another thing. I did not reach the explanation either, but one thing is true it is part of our "REALITY"

You mention :"Maps from fundamental particles to self-aware humans are too complex for us to distinguish abstraction from physical reality." This bottom-up approach is very usefull just to try to understand the essence of our reality, but not to find the essence of consciousness.

My approach is the search for a theory of REALITY, is a try to add a fourth "belief system", another "mental onstruct projected onto reality" (like math).

The Darwinian approach that consciousness arises from mindless matter is not mine, it reminds me of searching for the announcer in a radio. I agree with what you are calling the consciousness field, the radio is just an agent able to receive and reform it into awareness. However I am trying to find the transmittor...

So dear Edwin, I hope that you will find some time to read/comment and rate my essay "The Purpose of Life".

For the real good understanding of the working of our minds I rated you an 8.

best regards


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 5, 2017 @ 20:37 GMT
Dear Wilhelmus de Wilde,

It's been obvious for years that you are extremely focused on consciousness, so I'm not surprised.

I very much like "searching for the announcer in the radio".

When I first read your essay I started to give you 10, but everyone I pushed to the top so they would receive more visibility immediately got shot down by whatever troll lurks beneath the FQXi bridge biting passersby with 1's.

Also, I wanted more time to digest the meaning of your essay. While I think your scheme is magnificent, I was unsure how literally you meant it. For me experience of physical reality is key, but current projections of structure on physical reality are confused at best. Essays on consciousness seek to gain 'respectability' (the coin of the realm) by tying their systems to physics (the holy word of the realm). If the physics is mistaken (as much today is) it can take a perfectly good understanding of metaphysics in the wrong direction.

You work your way through various physical concepts and introduce 'limits', the speed of light and Planck time and length, then concede that Planck units do not exist in reality as we experience it. I would instead choose the speed of light and Planck's minimum interaction, h, both of which do exist. The Planck time and length are derived units, which, as you say, are unreal. My argument is for a physical continuum, not captured by mathematics, but closely approximated.

So I see the Planck Wall as a mathematical projection, having no physical reality. [In fact, you compare it to an abstract mathematical structure: Hilbert space.] You then construct an abstract 'space' called Total Simultaneity, based on the conception of Eternal Now Moments. I tend to view our universe as existing in one ENM, and all local consciousness partakes of this Now.

I do not buy the Copenhagen interpretation (or any other current interpretation) of quantum mechanics so I don't see observers as 'collapsing' a superposition of wave functions, and "creating" reality. QM is a statistical theory that describes averages when particles with always-associated-wave properties experience different paths. The idea that they experience this all-at-once as a superposition of probabilities is a projection I do not buy into. As I said in my essay: the statistics work, it is the interpretations that are in error. As you note, most experiments have been performed with photons, not particles, and certain aspects of photons have been unclear since Planck. I will not be able to resolve these in the comments. Nevertheless, I do not accept 'retrogression' as an acceptable way around built-in errors. Neither is this the place to argue entanglement. For more info, see:

The Nature of Quantum Gravity

Spin: Newton, Maxwell, Einstein, Dirac, Bell

I do believe in a physically real universe, but GR and QM have confused the issue via erroneous projections that are (at the moment) given credence. The universe will not simply vanish when these errors are corrected, but certain mystical and unphysical conceptions will vanish.

In short, I think you've developed a powerful way of describing the experience of local conscious beings in a unified reality existing Now. I think you should not try to tie it too closely to mystical elements of current physics which will not survive the century. Hopefully, not the next decade. As metaphor I buy your beautiful system. As physics I do not buy it. Clearly, over the sequence of FQXi essays, you are getting closer to the truth. I am sure you will continue to do so. By the way, I chose your figure 1 as the cover for my first book on consciousness, Gene Man's World, ISBN-13:978-0979176555.

My very best regards; keep up the excellent work.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Wilhelmus de Wilde replied on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 10:01 GMT
Thank you Edwin for the open mind you are showing.

As different as we both are we are searching for the same solutions, without different colours there is no beautifull rainbow.

You say "I tend to view our universe as existing in one ENM, and all local consciousness partakes of this Now." This is exactly what I mean to argue, My Derived Local (in space and time) Consciousness in a flowing time-restricted reality is a expression of Total Consciousness in Total Simultaneity. The NOW that that consciousness (field ?) is experiencing includes the whole historical flow towards this NOW Moment.

"The observer isn't the cause" of a wave collapse" In my perception the fact that the observer (agent) is "measuring" an event that is from the past (he cannot measure the NOW because that is immediatly past...), one part (position or velocity) is fixed, the observer is NOT the cause of this so called collapse, it isn't even a collapse it is a search for position/velocity in the flow that exists only in the observers consciousness. So it seems as if the observer is the cause but he is not, the result is just as lost as is the future.

So you see that we agree more as you thought...

best regards

Wilhelmus de Wilde

PS I never received a 10 in the beginning , the first rating was a 9 from another particpant, the second a six and then three trols arrived with three ones on a row without any comment why the essay was so bad...

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 22:39 GMT
Dear Wilhelmus,

Thanks for clarifying your 'collapse' argument. You are correct, we agree more now than I thought. Also, I said above I 'started to', or 'initially planned to' give you a 10, but since this seemed to cause others to experience a 1 from the troll, I would effectively be giving you a 5.5, so I did not grade you then. Also I wanted to digest your essay further to be sure I understood it. I have since given you a score that moved you up in the list.

Yes we do attack the same problem. It is so vast that there is room for two approaches. We focus on Now.


Edwin Eugene Klingman

Alan M. Kadin wrote on Mar. 6, 2017 @ 01:30 GMT
Dear Dr. Klingman,

I read your essay with great interest. This has some similarities with my essay, ‘No Ghost in the Machine,’ but also some important differences.

Similarities: Brain as learning neural network

Differences: While you see LSD-induced altered consciousness as an insight into an underlying “consciousness field”, I see dreams as an insight into an agent-generating virtual reality construction that constitutes consciousness. No special field is needed, and I suggest that a similar structure may be implemented in an electronic system (although this has yet to be demonstrated). Also, I do not see any need for a quantum basis for consciousness.

I would be interested in your comments on my essay.

Alan Kadin

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 06:23 GMT
Dear Alan Kadin,

We have, in past essays, agreed in general but differed in the details. For example, the wave aspect of fundamental particles reflects internal rotating vector fields while the external motion follows classical particle trajectories. Entanglement is rejected.

Similarly, we do not believe mind and consciousness to be related to quantum effects on the atomic level. [Or 'large' molecules, such as micro-tubules.]

You discuss consciousness and intelligence, but is not clear to me that you define them exactly as I do. The key point is that you find it feasible that consciousness is a virtual reality simulation, rising from biological neural nets, perhaps from the dynamics of classical nonlinear systems.

I believe that we have enough similarity in our theories of fundamental particles and associated physics, and in molecular biology of the cell and neural networks that I do understand your model. I've designed robotic systems and hold robot patents and I've thought for decades on the issues involved, and I'm simply unable to believe that mechanisms become aware through added complexity. Of course, given awareness, they become more 'intelligent' with increased neural capabilities. It is an enticing narrative for reductionist thinking, but not susceptible to proof. Therefore it is truly a choice. You choose to believe that evolved structures lead to self-awareness. I do not believe this. AI has been hyped since ELIZA in the 60s or 70s and we're still no closer as far as I can tell. Like quantum computing, AI will fund endless papers, while robots will become increasingly effective for working in controlled environments, but "emulating" consciousness does not yield consciousness. Nor do I conceive of an agent-generating virtual-reality structure that "constitutes consciousness". I believe these are projections and extrapolations. You believe no field is needed. As neither of us can demonstrate proof of concept, it remains personal choice as to what's deemed more feasible.

I fully agree with you there is no need for a quantum basis for consciousness. If by this you are referring to Penrose, Hameroff, et al. If you are referring to my 'qubit model' in my endnotes, my primary reason for including that was to demonstrate how easy it is to project qubits onto physical reality, potentially obscuring everything but the 'two states'. It really has nothing to do with explaining consciousness. Finally, as I propose a real physical field, not an immaterial field, I too avoid the "ghost in the machine".

Thanks for reading my essay and commenting. I always enjoy reading yours.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Stefan Weckbach wrote on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 10:30 GMT
Dear Edwin,

i just finished reading your essay. I like your general education and how you treat numbers and cite Kronecker. I also do believe that the existence of math could be exactly due to the boundary you described: 0 and 1 do appear. I once wrote an article which considers numbers and all the rest of maths to have come into existence by a simple split process (for example of a circle, divided by its diameter, resulting in Pi). I have further investigated why Pi is quantitatively and qualitatively what it is.

I also like your citing of maps versus territories. This is always a good picture to start from. Further i like “Maps from fundamental particles to self-aware humans are too complex for us to distinguish abstraction from physical reality.” Yes, even if there would be such a map theoretically, how can one establish it objectively?

I also take it as a good idea to list the three credos. As i noted in another comment to you (on my essay page) it nonetheless makes sense to take these credos for real and look where they lead to and if there could contradictions arise.

Another important point, raised by you:

“…many successes of the Big Bang model “can be traced to the initial conditions postulated … and put in by hand, without justification, other than to retrofit the data."

Yes, here we are in the realm of reverse engineering tasks. As you may know, the mathematician Edward Moore published a theorem in 1956 (Gedanken-experiments on sequential Machines) which states that a consistent induction scheme’s ‘implications’ cannot automatically be considered as necessarily meeting reality, because there can exist a multitude of different schemes, all matching the observational data (of a black-box; rightfully you note: The number of potential math models of physical reality is unlimited). This is really a problem, and Moore showed that it is related to the problem of induction.

Since inductions are concerned with observed regularities or quasi-regularities (as in QM), the problems of the relationship of credos with reality are serious. Therefore personally i tend to extrapolate these credos, and especially the ones that aim to give a final answer to such questions as why is there something rather than nothing up to the point where it becomes clear to me that these credos cannot be a logical explanation of the content of our black-boxes and their shere existence.

I also agree that either one seamless reality exists or the whole thing is just inconsistent, means absurd.

You further wrote:

“If consciousness is awareness plus volition and intelligence is consciousness plus logic (i.e., physical structural instantiations of AND and NOT compatible with Darwinian evolution of function via surviving structures)”.

Here the thought arose to me why i intuitively think that many explanations of consciousness in terms of feedback-loops and iterative processes as well as mappings of representations are all insufficient: They are objective tools of logical thinking, deduction and induction at the level of a conscious mind. Feedback loops for example are present when one contrasts two mutually exclusive concepts like the wave-particle behaviour. There is a direct feedback from the particle picture towards the wave picture and vice versa. This is a logical feedback loop. Heraclites of Ephesos (520 B.C - 460 B.C.) presumably was the first who termed the dynamics of oscillations between two truth values within an antinomy as an ‘enantiodromy’. Iterative processes are also well known in the course of pondering over some complex questions. And the results of these ponderings for such complex questions must be coded within a logical figure (a ‘representation’) to further operate with it. All this can be introspectively examined and i have the strong impression that these many explanations i mentioned above have taken these intuitively known dynamics to project it down to the next few hierachical levels of description. I do not exclude that at these levels, the mentioned dynamical processes also are executed, but the question arises how logical principles like these are able to facilitate conscious awareness in the first place. I therefore think these explanations, as important as they are, miss something and are incomplete.

I liked your analogy to expose a blind person for 12 hours to visual impressions.

You wrote:

“If mind couples to the physical brain, it is not surprising that chemically induced states of consciousness will differ from normal consciousness.”

Your exploration into the phenomenon of LSD-induced awareness is interesting and it surely is also important, since we gain knowledge by differentiating. And since a normal state of awareness is much different to an LSD-induced awareness, one should be able to conclude something from these differences. The pictures of the different brain activities show that awareness and consciousness are not localized somewhere special in the brain. By the way, LSD was also used in hospices and as i remember, the persons who had this unity-experience weren’t anymore afraid of their dead. Since fear is a Darwinian mechanism, one now can ask how it can be counteracted by some ‘chaos’ which was induced into the brain by a chemical that is well known to also initiate nightmares, fear of death and psychosis. The only question left here is how your conscious field does interact with the particle like structure of the brain – and what does this field being aware of if no brains would be existent (say, in the outer spaces)? I would also be interested if your view of physics is deterministic. Because i didn’t properly grasp your take on QM and how you interpret it. Could you comment on that a little bit more?

You wrote:

“I have awareness of only one physical universe, but I have many maps of the universe, and I use experience of the physical universe to qualify the maps.”

This is a very wise decision, as is also the whole gamut of your essay to question on a logical basis what is widely assumed in scientific circles to be known for sure.

Thank you for an essay that lays down that with high probability some known paths have to be revisited by taking different paths and to examine what this could say about paths in general.

Best wishes,

Stefan Weckbach

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 9, 2017 @ 18:01 GMT
Dear Stefan Weckbach,

Thanks for your comment. I'm pleased you found many things to agree with, such as the possible 0/1 boundary. I agree that feedback loops and iterative processes, while essential to logical thinking, are insufficient to cause consciousness to arise from dead matter.

You ask how the consciousness field does interact with particles in the brain. I postulate that it is with particles in motion, essentially momentum density. I do so because, after considering all known field interactions, this seemed to offer the most feasible mechanism which agreed with everything I know about biological cells, neurons, and the brain. It is ions flowing in axons and vesicles flowing across synapses that I believe are sensed by the field. Note also that the field would sense all neuronal activity at once, whereas individual neural actions, logical or otherwise, are probably highly localized. So our sense of 'self' is pervasive, rather than being identified with some local circuit that happens to be operating.

You ask about deterministic physics. I tend to think yes, although interactions between local induced fields are not calculable, as the fields are nonlinear and interact with themselves (essentially 'self-aware' fields to some degree). James Arnold's essay prefers 'spontaneity' to 'randomness'. You might look at my comment on his page. I believe that consciousness must include awareness and will, or volition, so I grant the field some degree of 'spontaneity', otherwise the action of the field on the brain would be deterministic. We may not have the concepts to define such deviation from determinism. Whether or not something like Planck's constant comes into play is only a guess. I don't think much of a 'push' is necessary in a brain with multiplier mechanisms 'built-in'.

You ask what would the field be aware of in empty space. Without physical logic circuits it wouldn't think 'logically'. Since the field interacts with itself, it is 'self-aware' but I assume it is a vague, tenuous awareness. At the birth of the universe, when all material fields were much denser, then possibly turbulent flows of the field itself could engender logic. As you noted from my essay, all of our theories of the early universe have been handcrafted to fit the data. Such early consciousness would diminish as the field expanded and 'cooled' and would thereafter be more localized where momentum flows were most dense, eventually peaking in biological cells and finally neural networks, but probably having a gay old time in all biological cells [who knows, flowers may be 'smiling' as they track the sun across the sky, and slime molds are pretty impressive creatures]. The presence of awareness during Darwinian evolution would go a long way toward relieving what appear to me to be insurmountable problems of combinatorial probability.

You ask about quantum mechanics and how I interpret it. I have several links scattered about in comments to my recent paper on The Nature of Quantum Gravity. I believe a field circulation is induced by the momentum density (per the Maxwell-Einstein equations) such that there are always wave properties associated with very dense particles (electrons, quarks) yielding a deBroglie-Bohm-like particle-plus-wave instead of the Copenhagen particle-or-wave. The fact that this correlates with Born probability is due to the Partition function that (by the grace of God) seems to describe all thermodynamic energy distributions. That's about all that fits into a comment, but I hope you find an opportunity to look at the paper sometime.

I continue to find your comments on other essays a very rewarding experience. You are a deep thinker.

My very best wishes,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

James Arnold wrote on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 15:47 GMT

I appreciate your essay very much.

Your treatment of mathematics should be a revelation to those who mistake it for physics.

I especially like:

“The math is a formal byproduct [of mind], having nothing to do with giving rise to awareness, volition, or purpose.”

“Is consciousness real? I can sense it, so it meets that criterion.”

“If mind is as primordial as physical reality, then it is best conceived as a field.”

“The brain as neural networks coupled to a consciousness field”

“The word is a symbol; the act is an experience.”

I believe our perspectives are complemental. Please have a look at my "Quantum spontaneity and the development of consciousness."

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 23:47 GMT
Dear James Arnold,

Thanks for your comment. Thanks for your review of Chalmers, Dennett, Nagel, Penrose, Pinker, Searle, Sperry and others. I haven't looked at them for years, but agree with all your analysis. Funny how one can achieve a name in this field when it's obvious one doesn't know whereof one speaks. Anyway, your summary is valuable, particularly for those who may not know recent history. The "integrated information" and "microtubules" approaches are apparently the rage today, setting us up for new batches of spectacular papers rich in detail, empty of comprehension.

"There is no emergent transition from a network of firing neurons to conscious experience of pleasure or pain."

Elsewhere I quote Santayana:

"All of our sorrow is real, but the atoms of which we are made are indifferent."

I fully agree with you that "consciousness is not a system of extrinsic objective relationships; it is intrinsic." Then it falls upon us to identify the source or location or nature of this 'intrinsicity'.

You say Penrose is a quantum physicist, but he's really more of a general relativist I believe. Nevertheless, as you note, by locking himself into 'microtubules', he is a reductionist. I have not yet understood what, beyond pretty and intricate pictures, people see in a specific large molecule. Yes, microtubules dynamically construct themselves and deconstruct themselves at their ends, but what element in the cell does not in one way or another do the same?

Although it's only a change of terminology, I very much like your change of focus from 'random' and 'indeterminate' to 'spontaneity'. Despite that Searle says "quantum indeterminism is the only form of indeterminism that is indisputably established as a fact of nature", this is interpretation-dependent, leaning heavily on Copenhagen and 'collapse'. Wave functions evolve deterministically through Schrodinger, and there is conceptual conflict between the physical wave property and the 'wave probability' function that is beyond the scope of a comment to resolve.

'Spontaneity' brings something to the local event that seems missing in 'random' and 'indeterminism'. I encourage you to develop this idea further. You have perhaps captured it when you trace it to an inner dynamic. In fact, spontaneity in consciousness carries with it a sense of "appropriateness".

I also like your 'no-cause' analysis of indeterminacy. You ask 'what can spontaneity offer?'. I think it offers a sense of appropriateness.

I do not identify this feature as rooted in quantum mechanics. For an indication of why, I refer you to my recent paper:

The Nature of Quantum Gravity

Spontaneity may be the 'least biased interpretation of quantum phenomena', but, more so, it is probably the most appropriate characterization of consciousness, and fits my field theory fairly well. Unless one is a believer in 'entanglement' [which is in almost every case 'monogamous'-linking two and only two particles], quantum events are local, even if the locale is as large as a microtubule. No one believes (I hope) that a quantum relation spans the entire brain, whereas the field that I propose does exactly this. So mind and intelligence are locally global versus locally local.

You hint at this when you say "we need to discover a connectedness between levels of individuality in order to establish a continuity from quantum to human."

It is not as clear to me that "this is the comprehensive continuity that the concept of spontaneity can provide…"

For "comprehensive continuity" I believe one needs a field, operating at all scales from electron to brain. Rather than argue technical points about space "roiling with virtual particles" [leading to predictions that differ from reality by 120 orders of magnitude!] I would hope that you might keep the baby of 'spontaneity" and throw out the confused quantum basis, in favor of attempting to apply 'spontaneity to the field' that envelops all the many pieces of the puzzle.

I would change your final statement [before the conclusion] to:

"…brain function doesn't cause consciousness, it in-forms it."

Thank you for a most rewarding read.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 22:33 GMT
Posted to Vladimir F. Tamari's essay:

You mentioned the world turned upside down with special relativity and velocity-dependent attributes. In my mind this is another case of focusing on the mathematical projections imposed on reality by physicists. I believe in the physical reality and seek to understand such reality through appropriate models. For example, I believe the appropriate model for special relativity is the "radar" model. My radar sits in my rest frame in London and sends a pulse at the speed of light toward a V2 rocket headed for London with velocity v. When my pulse strikes the nose of the V2, it returns to me at the speed of light. But a portion of the radar pulse wave-front continues toward the tail of the rocket. While my pulse travels to the tail fin at c, the tail fin is traveling toward me at v, and analysis of the return pulse implies that the V2 rocket is shorter in length than is actually the case.

Since I cannot reach out and touch an object in another inertial frame, but can only send and receive messages traveling at the speed of light, [even if that varies from place to place or time to time!] then Newtonian physics dictates a "length contraction" for objects so measured in a frame moving with respect to myself. I see no reason to believe the V2 has turned into silly putty. I simply see that communication at the finite speed of light complicates analysis of communications between moving reference frames.

Similarly, the "clock model" that times 'ticks' in terms of the round-trip travel between a source and detector on the floor of the railroad car and a mirror on the ceiling will show time dilation for moving clocks, compared to the identical optical clock stationary in the station. Again, essentially the radar model. No nonsense about "perfect" clocks. Along these lines the use of the term "simultaneous" when what is really being discussed is "synchronous", has convinced many that simultaneity has no meaning in the universe. This too is nonsense.

I agree that the Equivalence Principle has problems. It completely fails when either tidal forces or local rotation cannot be ignored. Why choose a fundamental principle that has glaring exceptions? The main consequence is that the gravitational energy of the field can always be transformed away in a suitable reference frame, yielding a purely geometric formalism. This follows from ignoring the Maxwell-Einstein gravito-magnetic aspects of dynamic gravity. If these aspects are considered it plays havoc with the Equivalence Principle and also with Copenhagen 'particle-wave duality'. The gravito-magnetic wave induced by ultra-dense matter (such as electrons) cannot be ignored. It is primarily due to the statistical/thermodynamic Partition function that the wavelength of this field can be related to energy and hence probability, resulting in the endless confusion known as QM.

I am amazed and pleased that your summary diagram on page 6 is almost 100% compatible with my theory of reality (with the possible exception of the bottom left corner [21st c]). You have been very busy my friend!

To tie some of this together, I hope you find the time to look at my recent paper

The Nature of Quantum Gravity

I think you will like it. The issue with Bell derived from his projecting the 'qubit' "two state" model onto a simplistic interpretation of Stern-Gerlach. But there is no fiercer branch of the QM religion than the church of the entanglement, so that is a fight to be avoided if possible. Thank God as you note, there are competent thinkers outside the establishment to do the work that must be done to escape the mess we're in.

I am in full agreement with viewing gravity as aether that acts as an optical field of variable index of refraction bending light. Since local gravity (aether) did not change for Michelson and Morley, wherever in orbit, they should've expected null results!

I showed in my dissertation that any axiomatic theory of physics can be formulated as automata. An example in my endnotes shows the mapping between the canonical form and one of Feynman's path integral terms. I also observed that the automaton's 'next state address' is conceptually equivalent to potential (as shown in the example.)

Vladimir it is so rewarding to see that many here continue to improve their theories in their essays every year. You and I are converging in many areas. That is so pleasing.

My very best wishes for you,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Vladimir F. Tamari replied on Mar. 9, 2017 @ 02:36 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman

I have responded to the above where you posted it on my essay page. Thanks again.

I read your gravity linearization paper and issue a sigh of relief. General Relativity with all its pomp and circumstance can be reduced to a simple concept involving density and velocity. Bravo. The technical details are beyond me, but I have argued that local density, a potential of space at the smallest scale, is what is responsible for gravity. There is another essential element, spin orientation of each ether node, but that that is too complicated to describe here - it is in my Beautiful Universe Theory especially Fig. 18. Question - why is velocity involved? Whose? It might be enough to have density, akin to an electrostatic field.

Your fqxi essay is again a bit too technical for me to understand all the doubtless insightful and original ideas therein but of course got its drift. Just this: Intelligent beings necessarily evolved late in the history of the Universe - why is an observer at all part of the same? The Universe managed all by itself without human intervention and did very nicely. We are probably one with the Universe, and it is a great deal for us, but the Universe is hardly aware or in need of of us?!

I have been studying my own perceptions, however, and discovered for myself something about the way we 'see' and experience dreams. in this report about post anesthesia hallucinations it is a bit unpleasant to read, but I got the impression that these hallucinations and dreams are the same thing, just the one is visible while wide awake!

Well past all that now, thank God. Wishing you all the best


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Ronald Racicot wrote on Mar. 8, 2017 @ 19:33 GMT
Dear Dr. Klingman,

Gary Simpson suggested that I read your essay and comment on it as well as write to you concerning my own research and essay.

I did read your essay a couple of times as well as some of your other writings on Spin. It would be interesting and fun to ask you more questions to help me understand more clearly your analyses and arguments. Maybe in the future. But...

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 8, 2017 @ 23:01 GMT
Dear Ronald Racicot,

I enjoyed your essay, and applaud your support of common sense. As you note, arguing against the Quantum Credo bears some resemblance to banging one's head against the wall. The belief is that the classical world arises (somehow) from the quantum world, so if you have a classical model it's a hard sell. Nevertheless you reject the mystique and magic built-in to the quantum interpretation, particularly the Copenhagen interpretation.

This began with qubits and other mathematical structures projected onto physical reality, a reality that was already confused by the idea that things don't exist in reality until you measure them. [How does one go about proving that?] Anyway, since spin is measured with magnetic fields and photon absorption it is not surprising that most measurements find the particle spin aligned or not aligned with the local field. So 'qubit' statistics 'work', despite the artificial nature of the scheme. It is when physicists believe that reality is structured in this way that problems occur. As you correctly point out, the Schrödinger wave equation itself contains no information related to spin until Pauli inserts his 2x2 matrix into the Hamiltonian.

In 1964 Feynman, enamored of the 2-slit optical experiment proposed [as the basis of a major text on QM!] a gedanken-experiment using a 'modified' Stern-Gerlach device. His two-slit spin analog applies 'wave function' concepts to a particle property that has no "wave properties". But this is what the majority of physicists today believe, despite that the relevant experiment has never been performed. At the same time, Bell forced the qubit model onto measurements that did not support it and proceeded to 'prove' a result that does not relate to reality. Note that all of his tests use photons, not particles. If one uses a classical model and measures the deflection of the particle in the Stern-Gerlach inhomogeneous field, then the Bell theorem is falsified, but those who make their living in this field insist that the spectrum of actual deflections be idealized as +1 or -1 and use this to prove Bell's theorem.

Others refer to Dirac's theory of spin, where Dirac applied a 'doubled' Pauli matrix construct to his equation based on this structure. But the popular conception is wrong. Dirac's theory does not yield spin; it yields helicity. As I've noted, the piling of projection on top of projection has left physicists completely confused about reality. A stochastic model based on what you call 'pure' spin yields the correlation that Bell claims is impossible for classical particles. However if one follows Bell and forces all deflections to be +1 or -1, then one can no longer obtain the correlation. It's a self-licking ice cream cone.

In short, trust your intuition, but realize that you're swimming upstream against the Quantum Credo. My belief is that a "better" theory based on classical physics cannot succeed until the original errors that have been propagated through quantum mechanics for almost a century have been clarified. There are several Stern-Gerlach type experiments that can address this issue, and several physicists are working with me to implement one of these experiments. But physicists have a way of ignoring anomalies and things that don't fit preconceptions. So I encourage you to keep questioning and teach your grandchildren to question, but don't look for any changes anytime soon.

I thank you for the Shankar quote. I have the text, but had not seen that quote. [And the Gell-Mann 'flap-doodle' remark.]

I sprinkled several links to a recent paper, the Nature of Quantum Gravity, that briefly describes my model of a deBroglie-Bohm type electron. Also I have several papers on viXra that treat spin and Bell. You might get something out of these.

Thanks for your comment and keep up the good fight.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Ronald Racicot replied on Mar. 10, 2017 @ 13:30 GMT
Dear Dr. Klingman,

Thank you very much for your helpful and encouraging comments. Your knowledge and experience is appreciated and in the future I hope to read and study more of your research efforts and results. I look forward to possible corroboration on mutually interesting problems.

Thanks again,

Ronald Racicot

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Alfredo Gouveia Oliveira wrote on Mar. 9, 2017 @ 23:01 GMT
Dear Edwin

Your essay is a surprise to me – a nice one – because you dare to say many things that can be “dangerous” within the scientific environment; furthermore, you say it in a way that deserves my admiration – and I am more prone to be critical then eulogistic.

I started studying the mind half a century ago; never experienced the LSD but you are quite right when you refer the importance of loosing mental connections to be able to have good ideas. I use other techniques to obtain such a result.

Your essay is focused on consciousness; mine, on the contrary, intends to explain the evolution from first particles to the human society, exclusively from matter properties. But, while including human intelligence in the process, I exclude consciousness from it – I state that it does not arise from properties of matter. As you will suspect if you read my essay, I do not state this lightly.

Above all, my feeling is that our essays complement each other – as far as two 9 pages essays can cover such a magnum quest. Together, they provide a rather complete answer to this contest. I would very much like to know whether you feel the same (my essay "Decoding the "Intelligence" of the Universe - ).

Thank you for your essay and congratulations for it!

All the best

Alfredo Oliveira

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 11, 2017 @ 06:24 GMT
Dear Alfredo Oliveira,

Thank you for your gracious remarks. Your first paragraph is exquisitely worded.

The danger you note is of course due to the fact that physicists work awfully hard to acquire their skills and social positions and funding. For the most part, physics works, and it works well enough in various fields to solve problems, publish, and perform experiments, in spite of the interpretational errors and general confusion about the "nature of reality". So in general only older individuals can afford the rejection that comes from rocking the boat that is being enjoyed in full by the first-class passengers.

You note that our essays complement each other, and I agree that each overlaps in ways that expand the topic. You discern 'intelligence' in the universe, and begin by clarifying the concept of intelligence. Whereas I define intelligence as consciousness plus logic, you exclude consciousness and define intelligence as "the ability to solve a new problem".

First you do assume 'mind' and note that the easiest way to find a solution is 'table lookup': you already possess the answer – find it. The problem arises when no previous solution exists; the problem is new. You then formalize 'wandering to a goal' in terms of 'generating hypotheses' and 'selection processes'. The intelligence involved in solving new problems then consists of generating hypotheses (potential solutions) and applying a selection process (does it solve the problem?) Generators of hypotheses can be random or algorithmic. "Physical" intelligence favors random variation or mutation, while "physical" selection is Darwinian survival. Thus at the basic level of matter you defined "intelligence" and demonstrate its presence. Interestingly you do not claim that this leads to consciousness, merely that it exhibits intelligence as an inherent aspect of the universe.

Of course a very large part of your solution is keyed to the fact that as the systems of particles grow larger and acquire more degrees of freedom, they expand the repertoire of potential 'hypotheses', while at the same time acquiring a greater susceptibility to temperature. You weave these threads together exceedingly well.

My definition of intelligence related more to mental aspects as indicated by the definition: consciousness plus logic. The consciousness represents awareness of the problem. The logic enables algorithmic constructions, counting, and comparison. The consciousness must be aware of the 'match' of solution to problem. And the awareness of 'match' of solution to problem in mental space is analogous to 'survival' as solution to the problem in physical space.

So I agree with you that our essays complement each other in a significant way. I enjoyed the many details in your essay, linked to the concept of expanding space [I didn't realize the moon had been shown to have an expanding orbit. I guess those laser reflectors we left there have paid off.] In other words I enjoyed your entire essay, but I most enjoyed your working definition of intelligence without invoking consciousness.

My very best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Don Limuti wrote on Mar. 11, 2017 @ 02:02 GMT
Hi Edwin,

Yes physics is changing....pity the peer reviewer who knows not what to do.

Your conclusion: Math maps projected on the physical territory form the substance of physics. Is the answer to the question FQXi intended.

For the answer to: "How can mindless mathematical laws give rise to choice" ....see the definitive answer in my essay :)

Great to be in a contest with you again. And your essay and explanations are clear and insightful. I rate this the highest.

Don Limuti

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 11, 2017 @ 06:53 GMT
Dear Don Limuti,

It's always a pleasure to read your entries. And, in the Karl Popper sense, no one can prove you wrong! You combine subtlety and humor in a way few can match. I'll bet you're a lot of fun to be with. But, having read your essay three times, I'm more impressed each time and most impressed that you do it all in a page and a half.

It's definitely good to see you back!

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Christian Corda wrote on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 09:33 GMT
Dear Edwin,

It is nice re-meeting you here the FQXi Essay Contest.

I have just read your beautiful Essay. I see that you have currently the highest community rating. This is well deserved, because, despite I find this Essay a bit speculative, it is also intriguing. Thus, I will give you the highest score. Good luck in the Contest!

Here is our Essay.

Cheers, Ch.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 20:06 GMT
Dear Christian Corda,

Thanks very much for your gracious comments.

When I first read your essay, I too thought that you had missed the point of the essay. But after reading your comments I now understand that you simply placed another interpretation on the question and you actually answered extremely well from that perspective. After all, the mindless math did make predictions for over a century, and gave rise to considerable aims and intentions necessary to evaluate the model.

I think it's also relevant to focus as you do on development of the 'mindless math', with logical mistakes made along the way and consequent changes in predictions and interpretations.

So congratulations on finding a unique but relevant perspective when handling it well!

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Donald G Palmer wrote on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 17:39 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I sincerely appreciate both your essay and, even more, your responses to comments on your essay (which I admit I have not completed reading).

Being trained as a Mathematician, I see a similar situation in mathematics as your discuss in physics. In physics it might be 'math maps projected onto physical territory', in mathematics it is numerical maps projected onto mathematical territory. How we represent numbers has ingrained certain ways of thinking into mathematical concepts and theory. We feel that the decimal numeric system (with its cousins) is the 'Standard Model' for numbers, and the continuum can only consist of Real numbers - a well tred path.

More in line with your essay, I do not understand Platonism as being about reality emerging from mathematics, as it has more to do with those shadows on the wall of the cave, where we cannot directly perceive what is real (either physical or mathematical). So it seems your Platonic Credo definition comes more from a Physics perspective than a mathematical perspective.

A question for you: If, as you quote Rovelli: "... evidence is strong that nature is unitary and coherent." then shouldn't all levels of reality be an interconnected whole? Why do we treat levels of scale separately rather than as a whole?

Suggestion: Our current system of numeric representations is unable to handle significantly different levels of scale, thus limiting what we can measure and connect mathematically across levels of scale and then also limits the mathematical maps we are able to make against the physical territory to one level of scale or another.

Thank you for an interesting essay (and links to other papers).


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 19:21 GMT
Dear Don Palmer,

Thanks for your comments and for your essay.

First, let me agree that the 'version' of Platonism I refer to is primarily one that some physicists subscribe to.

I also appreciate your point about a mathematical continuum being modeled by 'real' numbers. I'm working with a general relativist, whose model of the universe as a 'perfect fluid' is called the 'dust ball' model. My conception of the consciousness field is as a universal continuum, not a set of points.

You begin your essay by noting the physical concepts and how they interact is at the center of the theory, not the mathematical laws.

You also note that the mathematics of the physical theory is an attempt to model physical concepts using mathematical structure. This seems in complete agreement with my contention that mathematical structure is projected onto reality. In early days the structure was intuitive, probably because our neural nets were 'tuned' by survival to identify mass, force, momentum, speed, etc. Once Planck's constant entered, we began projecting matrix structures and other non-intuitive structures, and the 'conceptions' couldn't keep up.

Your example of a pendulum as a specific physical model that shares 'harmonic motion' with many very different models is excellent.

Your perspective fits well with my model. I conceive of the consciousness field as a real physical field that possesses the properties awareness plus volition. I do not try to model these mathematically. I'm not sure it makes any sense to model subjective self-awareness, which is non-linear and non-measurable. On the other hand, if the field is to interact physically with the material world, which it obviously does, then it should be capable of being modeled in that sense. So I do have equations that describe the input/output interactions; what the field physically senses and how the field can act on matter. I do not model the 'aims and intentions' mathematically.

Thus, as you so clearly state, the field cannot be reduced to a mathematical model, yet it's physical interaction behavior is modeled mathematically. The theory is mathematically modeled in physical interaction, but only conceptually modeled in the 'mental' properties. It certainly matches your key point that the conceptual model is primary, rather than the mathematical structures.

You note that it would be a mistake to think that the mathematical models are either the reality, or, by themselves, can define reality. This is congruent with my discussion of quantum theory, so buried under complex structures that reality vanishes at times.

To summarize, you observe that if we only consider the mathematical structures, we will not see any 'what', 'who', or 'why' involved. These relate to conscious awareness and volition. We see 'how' the fields interact with matter, sensing or directing change.

So thanks again, your essay has helped me elaborate on my own theory.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Donald G Palmer replied on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 20:37 GMT

Thank you for reading my essay and your congruent thoughts regarding it.

Having read yours, I think we have a good bit in common - as you note your 'math maps projected onto physical territory' is the same as mine (using different words).

A number of physicists have commented on the need for new mathematics in order to progress physics. I will suggest that the direction of these new mathematical tools is the need to 'upgrade' our 500+ year old system of numeric representation (decimals and positional numeric cousins) in a way that expands numeric representation to complex numbers. There is a price for this change, which involves some re-routing of current paths - however the gains are many entirely new paths.

If we could put a numeric value to sqrt(-1) (or 'i'), then the 2-part character of complex values (x + iy, which is not a complex number, but the representation of a complex number) simplifies to a single value. We would not need to 'throw out' the 'imaginary' part in order to produce 'real' observable results (what does this part represent is where some new paths emerge). This could radically change how and even what we can calculate.

Note that Donald Knuth already did this more than 50 years ago, so this is not a fantasy.

Some ideas that could assist physics and mathematics expansion...


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 21:18 GMT
Dear Don,

I agree that we have a good bit in common in the way that we view mathematical structure as being projected onto physical reality, and then claiming space in the physicist's head. Although Tegmark thinks any interpretation is 'baggage', it is only the 'faulty' interpretations that I view as baggage.

You are correct that a number of physicists have commented on the need for new mathematics in order to progress physics. I am one of them. However 'new' is in the eyes of the observer. Circa 1964 David Hestenes developed Geometric Algebra, with which you may or may not be familiar. In either 3+1 or 4D he formulates 'Space-time Algebra', which fits special relativity like a glove. The exciting part of it is that every entity in the algebra has both a geometric definition and an algebraic definition, as do all products of terms. I believe this is unique, and amazingly well adapted to physics. One of the terms, the pseudoscalar, has value equal to the square root of -1. In this instance it serves algebraically as the complex i, but a much better way to look at it is as the Hodge duality operator.

If you're already familiar with this, and it's not what you're looking for, oh well. If you're not familiar with it, anything written by Hestenes is excellent, or Doran, Lasenby, and Gull, or Alan MacDonald. You might want to start with Hestenes 'Oersted Medal Lecture'. Googling "Hestenes geometric algebra" should take you to his home page at Arizona State University. I suggest starting with the Oersted Medal Lecture. I also highly recommend 'Geometric Algebra for Physicists" by Doran and Lasenby, although there are tons of pdfs online for free. I think Alan MacDonald's books are written more for a mathematician.

If nothing else you'll gain an appreciation of just how hard it is to get new math off the ground. I love the system, and everyone I know who has bothered to learn it feels the same. But it's taken over 50 years! And the tremendous power does not come easy; there's a learning curve.

Anyway this may or may not help you along the way. It's helped me.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Héctor Daniel Gianni wrote on Mar. 12, 2017 @ 22:08 GMT
Dear Edwing Eugene Klingman

I invite you and every physicist to read my work “TIME ORIGIN,DEFINITION AND EMPIRICAL MEANING FOR PHYSICISTS, Héctor Daniel Gianni ,I’m not a physicist.

How people interested in “Time” could feel about related things to the subject.

1) Intellectuals interested in Time issues usually have a nice and creative wander for the...

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George Kirakosyan wrote on Mar. 13, 2017 @ 04:56 GMT
Dear Evgeny,

I have already read some of your papers. Basically, I agree with you in most cases. Of course, there is an aspect where it is possible to discuss, but not now of course. As for your essay, I already wrote to you that it is really worthy of prize and I see now that I was not mistaken in my assessment (see my previous post). Thus, I can now specifically confirm my high opinion on your essay!

I wish you further success

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 13, 2017 @ 19:15 GMT
Dear George,

Thank you for returning to my page to confirm your interest. I appreciate that very much.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

George Kirakosyan replied on Mar. 14, 2017 @ 06:02 GMT
Many thanks! God help to you!

Best wishes

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Shaikh Raisuddin wrote on Mar. 13, 2017 @ 12:46 GMT
Edwin Eugene Klingman,

Your essay pesupposes mental concepts alien to matter.

If anything is not in matter, can it come in man?

If matter has no mind, then can it emerge in man?

Consciousness is property of matter.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 13, 2017 @ 19:43 GMT
Dear Shaikh Raisuddin,

Thanks for commenting on my essay. Yours is a very interesting essay. In it you say:

"It is not physics that gives behavior to matter instead it is behavior of matter that gives physics. That means matter has its own mind and intelligence. Mind is that which decides a response and not that emerges from brain alone."

It's not clear to me how you define matter, so I'm unsure exactly what you mean. Is an electron matter? Are quarks matter? Is the electromagnetic field of matter? Is the gravitomagnetic field matter? Since Einstein's paradigm-shifting equation E=mc**2, such fields have been considered material. They have mass energy, and are generally considered substantial. The field I propose is physical, therefore I consider it material.

In short, it is not clear to me that you and I are in disagreement about consciousness and matter. I am perhaps a little more uncertain about the material status of a computer virus.

I have not heard the saying "what is not inborn is artificial." You apply this by noting "the conventionally meant human mind is artificial."

In short it seems to me that our essays agree more than they disagree.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Ted Christopher wrote on Mar. 13, 2017 @ 16:28 GMT
Hi Edwin Klingman,

I appreciate your efforts to delve deeply into the question at hand. I have some pretty serious quibbles with your conclusions but I will put off quibbling for a bit here.

I have an essay which takes a look at some under-appreciated behavioral phenomena, the unfolding heritability problem, and together the challenges they pose for the scientific vision that is the foundation for that same question. That material might be of interest to you.


If nothing else I hope the get more people to realize that it is not hard to fundamentally question the scientific vision of life. And with that you can push further questing in new directions.

My quibbling peaks with the LSD discussions. Briefly, I have somewhat of a complementary perspective on that subject. I am a technically-oriented person who has also spent a lot of energy on Buddhist-related meditational efforts. Somewhat in tandem with those efforts I have encountered a number of people who have used LSD (and other psycho-dyanmic drugs). If there was a net benefit to those drug efforts it was not apparent to me.

I hope things are going well for you.

Ted Christopher

Rochester, NY

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Anonymous replied on Mar. 13, 2017 @ 18:58 GMT
Dear Ted Christopher,,

Thanks for reading and commenting. Your essay is full of case studies that seem to have significance for materialist-based understanding of consciousness. I too have written of those cases where large percentages of the brain are missing but consciousness is not missing. And the Caenorhabditis elegan's 302 neurons (without the consciousness field) have not answered any questions of note.

Numbers you quote are interesting: 3 million out of 3 billion genetic variances account for about 1% of innate variation in intelligence. You say:

"Such investigations [might] give pause to those trying to pursue more detailed understanding of consciousness based on materialist assumptions."

A key focus of your essay is that, while the general belief is that neurons shape thinking, genetics also seems to play a large role. While I only peripherally focused on this in my essay, many of my comments above point out that biological cells are chock-full of 'moving parts' and that it is momentum density than interacts with the consciousness field in my theory. It is certainly not limited to, or even specifically related to, 'microtubules'.

In short, if a universal consciousness field exists that interacts with momentum density, it will certainly interact with components of cells and with blood flowing in the body. It still seems likely to me that neurons are implicated in logic, but consciousness of self is a "whole body" experience, probably going to the cellular level.

In my essay I emphasize the fact that even our theories of fundamental particles are confused and the Standard Model is known to be incomplete. Aspects of quantum mechanics, according to Feynman, Susskind, and others, are incomprehensible. So I point out that "theories" from particles-to-human beings are narratives, underlying credos. They are not 'scientific' as is usually understood by the term, and LHC-type vast brain scanners will not change this. If the "Higgs" required an LHC, human consciousness will require a galaxy-wide effort!

Finally, I read again last week that upwards of 20% of people either have or will have mental disorders. It is obvious that many of these will not benefit from psychodynamic substances, and some may be pushed over the edge. As I clearly stated at the top of page 8, a 9 page essay on 'mindless math' is not the place to discuss social problems arising from widespread use of such. This does not, I believe, detract from my main points.

Personally, life is good, aside from the well known fact that "growing old is not for sissies."

Thanks again for your very interesting and well-written essay, and for your expression of concern.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Jonathan Khanlian wrote on Mar. 14, 2017 @ 02:20 GMT
Hi Eugene,

I remember you from one the other essay contests, but I didn't remember you being so open-minded that you would dare to talk about LSD in science paper... Bravo for the guts! Forget the fact that I used to refer to you as a "stiff":)

You wrote:

"Awareness of oneness-with-the-universe is real, but awareness of boundaries and distance is so necessary for survival that it dominates the normal consciousness of adults..."

This passage in your essay reminded me of a couple times when I was lying in bed with my eyes closed after fighting with my girlfriend, feeling very alone, and it actually felt like she was physically very far away, like if I reached over I wouldn't be able to touch her. Very weird effect, that these emotions would lead to a different feeling of my physical surroundings...thoughts?

Anyway, check out my essay... And if you like the idea of using psychedelics to explore the fundamental nature of reality, then please check out my independent film "Digital Physics" on iTunes, Amazon Prime, or Vimeo. Mainstream physicists are too worried about their reputation to acknowledge it, but I believe you are hip enough that it may appeal to you;)



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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 15, 2017 @ 05:53 GMT
Hi Jon,

Glad you enjoyed my essay. I found several interesting things in your short essay. I particularly liked:

"If you're able to see the forest for the trees, or if you have access to the high-level programming language, you can interpret the system from the [top-down] view."


"I think humans are more like information systems than physical systems. After all our cells turn over so we aren't made of the same stuff we were just a short time ago."

That interests me from two perspectives. First, the consciousness field is compatible with cellular turnover. Second, I don't believe information exists other than as a change in physical structure, and your statement seems completely compatible with my view of information.

And I think your focus on 'gliders' in 'The Game of Life' is an excellent toy model to debate the meaning of 'emergence'.

As for the change of consciousness you spoke of, emotional changes, hormonal changes, even starvation, can change the brain chemistry enough to experience the world differently. Why not?

Today's been a very very busy day, and the list of essays seems to never quit growing. I did watch the trailer and will watch later!

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Willy K wrote on Mar. 14, 2017 @ 06:13 GMT
Dear Klingman

It was interesting to see the three Credos being brought up in such a prominent manner. I don’t really know which one I subscribe to; you are right, it can be a bit like parallel universes triggered by LSD. If I really think about it, I would say that I am comfortable with Platonic and Darwinian Credos, but I am more comfortable with the Darwinian Credo since it has the added benefit of sensory inputs. Now that I look at my essay, I see that I began with Platonic Credo (first para) and ended with the Darwinian Credo (last para)! Thanks so much for triggering that introspection.

Regards, Willy

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 15, 2017 @ 21:31 GMT
Dear Willie K,

Thanks for reading my essay and telling me how it triggered introspection on your own.

Your essay, as you note, did begin with the Platonic credo:

"…when these physical entities are studied down to their most fundamental constituents, all that's left will be mathematics…"

You then propose that the total biomass on earth is a measure of "successful deployment of 'aims and intentions' by some living systems." I think that's an excellent perspective. It immediately places the problem into a statistical realm and removes it from individual idiosyncrasies. Your comparison of human biomass footprint over social insects is also insightful, and your suggestion that recent equality of intrinsic human biomass to extrinsic social insect biomass may be indicative of a new form of extrinsic intelligence, that of human society.

You clarify your focus: "use mathematical laws to describe the human social system." As you have focused on biomass as a surrogate for statistics, and considered negative and positive liberty (freedom) as the criterion of interest, I would like to suggest an earlier FQXi that focuses on the same aspects of society:

The Thermodynamics of Freedom

I did not understand much of your discussion on page 3 at first reading. I do not believe that it strengthens what has started out as a very strong essay. You might consider deleting this and moving directly into the page four discussion where you begin filling in the blanks. (Or maybe I should go back and read page 3 few more times)

Your discussion of the various rights is superb, and I see very little (if any) need to justify these using page 3 arguments.

You, however, appear to make more use of your page 3 model on page 5 with the 'regulation' right. Since you've included your email address, I may send you information that you might find of interest.

I'll say this. You deal with the big picture. Galaxies are interesting, but in cosmology they are aspects of the 'dustball' model. The truly larger universe of interest is between your ears.

Your figure 5 on the inherent balance of rights of the people and feedback for the people is masterful. I assume this is your own creation, and I congratulate you.

In the end, you briefly discuss AIs. Having some expertise in these areas I do not see the singularity as a likely event, but I think AI might reasonably fit into your extrinsic intelligence model.

In summary, I believe yours is one of the most important essays in the contest. We should all thank Templeton for founding this organization, and those people who have run it so well for almost a decade.

Thanks for entering your essay. I encourage you to continue developing your theme.

My very best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Rajiv K Singh wrote on Mar. 14, 2017 @ 12:57 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I find your essay very very interesting, and impressed with its persuasiveness. So, let me concentrate on a few of the disagreements.

In "How do we know?" subsection, you state, "One understands the world through primary means (experience) and secondary means (abstractions). Primary experience is physical, based on awareness of sensed data; secondary sources are...

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 16, 2017 @ 01:47 GMT
Dear Rajiv K Singh,

You begin by saying "information must have reality of its own, otherwise it cannot be created."

Many today speak of information as if it were a type of particle. I do not believe this. Energy flows between systems, and if the energy causes a structural change (ink on paper, electronic gate switching, photon exciting retina, etc.) then information is "created" or "written" or "recorded" or "registered". But it is meaningless unless there is a codebook or interpretation; "One if by land, two if by sea" has a historical context, without which it is meaningless words. So you are correct that information always conveys a relation, at least with contextual elements, i.e., semantics or 'meaning'. In physics this meaning is provided by models or theories through which experiments are interpreted.

In your argon experiment you say "each of these electrons individually carries information". Yes, in the context of our theory. In actuality all the electron carries is energy/momentum. So I'm unsure when you say 'nature is expected to pick such a language to build layers of description…". Nature does what nature does, interacting with itself perpetually. We through our models provide the language. That this is possible, verges on miraculous, but we should simply give thanks and employ it.

If I understand your use of 'conjunction' and 'disjunction', you're defining logical operations for processing conditions. As all possible logic is derivable from AND and NOT gates, I assume you can map these into such if needed to. You note that "the simplicity of information processing makes it much more likely to occur in self-organized systems." I agree. You then find it reasonable that this leads to self-sustaining organization. I also agree, at least I agree that it increases the odds of such happening.

Then you say "it is apparent that more an organism learned about processes and its environment, more it could develop action pathways to meet its own needs." I still agree. In essence, the codebook or interpretational repertoire is growing, allowing the system to handle an increasing number of contingencies. But then you take the big step! You say this creates a specification-free-want, which I interpret to mean an aim, intention, or goal. I do not believe this follows. You are suddenly assigning conscious qualities to what is simply a very sophisticated physical system driven by the flow of energy/momentum. This is essentially the basis of the Darwinian Credo that increasing complexity leads to awareness. That is an assumption, and one that I do not make, or find credible.

Thus, since you apparently do make this assumption, you claim that no consciousness field is needed for awareness. As I've said several times above, "you pays your money and you takes your choice".

Thanks for an interesting essay, and for your response to my essay.

My best regards

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Rajiv K Singh replied on Mar. 16, 2017 @ 13:07 GMT
Keeping your method, copying the response here too. There should have been internal link to connect the discussions on two submissions.

Dear Edwin,

Thank you very very much for perusing my essay, and offering your views on it. Thank you again for striking on one of the most important contentions of mine that 'information must have a reality of its own'. Yes indeed, I too do not mean...

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Avtar Singh wrote on Mar. 14, 2017 @ 23:30 GMT
Hi Edwin:

I enjoyed reading your paper and an eloquent description of the quantum model of mind, reality, and consciousness. It relates closely to my contest paper - paper - FROM LAWS TO AIMS & INTENTIONS - A UNIVERSAL MODEL INTEGRATING MATTER, MIND, CONSCIOUSNESS, AND PURPOSE elaborated below. I completely agree with your statement – “The background or universal state of mind is...

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 16, 2017 @ 01:59 GMT
Dear Avtar Singh,

Thanks for reading and commenting on my essay. I have now read your essay and agree that we see consciousness as inherent in the physical universe rather than an artifact, almost an afterthought, that emerged in unplanned fashion. If this were the case, it could just as easily have been that consciousness never arises at all.

I agree with you that "a common set of physical laws govern the functioning and behavior of matter, mind, consciousness, intentions, aims, and purpose at all scales in the universe." and that "laws are not mindless but the very mind of the universe and goal-oriented behavior is not an accident..."

Your focus is heavily on the cosmological problems of dark matter and dark energy. I have not quantitatively pursued my theory in this direction, so I cannot compare our results. My focus has been on the physical interaction of the field with neural networks of the brain, and of the field with itself.

As Harry Ricker points out elsewhere, physics suffers from "underdetermination", in which case two or more theories fully comply with all the verification evidence. This is exacerbated when the theories do not fully overlap in their applications. The significant thing is that we draw the same conclusion that consciousness is inherent in the universe, not an 'after-the-fact' artifact, nor anything that arose from 'mindless math'.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Vladimir Rodin wrote on Mar. 15, 2017 @ 20:44 GMT
Dear Mr. Klingman,

value of your essay for me first of all that it induces a subject of your research to serious work. Thanks you for interesting work which should be comprehended once again.

Best regards and good luck in the contest!

Vladimir A. Rodin

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 18, 2017 @ 23:40 GMT
Vladimir Rodin,

Thank you for reading and commenting. I agree with you on the centrality of motion in all metaphysical endeavors. In my essay, it is momentum density that the field couples to. I also agree with you that motion entails structures or topology of space (proto-medium), energy, time, and mass. Given this arena, you add preons and derive constant speed. As the preons are developed elsewhere, I did not follow all of your development. It is often hard to encapsulate all necessary information in 9 pages.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Mar. 16, 2017 @ 00:19 GMT
Posted to Dean Rickles page:

I believe you're close to expressing Wheeler's conception when you state:

"The laws of physics… are heavily laden with material from humans devising such representation and laws.… The structure of the universe, on such views, is intimately connected with our own existence."

I would prefer to state that "the perceived structure of the universe… is intimately connected with our own existence." The structures we project on the universe [as discussed in my essay] do not actually change physical reality, but only our perception of physical reality.

Nor is it at all clear that mathematical laws, as artifacts of the mind are thereby "infused" with mind. They are and remain "mindless".

Schrödinger's remark about "mind and world" address mind and physical reality, not mathematical laws or poems. Poems or mathematical laws "generated" by mind are and remain "mindless". Nor do I see Ernst Cassirer's attempt to merge objective and subjective through wordy abstraction as relevant. I believe the problem arises when you state

"That laws are only ever 'objective'."

It is physical reality, the ground of being, that is objective, in the sense that when you jump off a tall building, you will go 'splat'. The attempt to formalize the rules, and hence derive Newton's F=ma or Einstein's curved space-time are only more or less 'objective', depending upon their congruence with reality. This is where Schrödinger's "gaps, lacunae, paradoxes…" arise – the mismatch of our imposed laws and objective reality. I discuss the projection of mathematical structure on physical reality in my essay, which I invite you to read.

I do agree that "physical reality is deemed tantamount to independent from some arbitrary observer." Physical reality is the territory; theories, descriptions, and models are the map. Your suggestion of "averaging over" the maps is perhaps one way to define 'consensus' reality.

Such confusion shows up in Eddington's "much of the 'stuff of the world' is 'spiritual' [now 'mental']. Although this is poorly worded, it is congruent with my thesis of a consciousness field that interacts with material reality [in the form of momentum density]. Nevertheless, to say that "the laws that we often suppose to be entirely mindless… are in fact products of the mind" does not in any way "infuse" laws with mind. They are, insofar as they can be said to exist, "mindless". They do not possess mind!

I think it nonsense for Eddington to claim that an intelligence "should be able to obtain all the knowledge of physics we have obtained by experiment." You are correct. It is absurd!

You then say "modern physics is beholden to more abstract ideals" and "it is possible that this use of mathematics imposes 'blinkers' on the view of the world." This is compatible with my "mindless laws as projections on reality" and I note that Rovelli concurs with this as I believe do Gambini and Pullin. This is not to agree with Wheeler's "bootstrap" and certainly not with Q'bism.

Despite that I disagree with many statements in your essay, nevertheless I do agree with the opening of your final paragraph – "that the world is in some sense mind stuff…, or at least infused with some kind of mind stuff…". The fact that this is such a nebulous statement is probably what causes you to back off a little in your last sentence.

My belief is that either consciousness arises when Lego blocks come together in such a way as to make dead matter magically self-aware, or else the universe is inherently conscious. As I believe it is the latter, then it is not enough to wave ones hands and say "mind stuff", or draw a cute picture as did Wheeler. If mind has any effect on matter then the laws of interest should be those describing the field and its interaction with matter. [Universal mind could be nothing but a field.] The description of the interaction between the field and matter is what makes it physics, whereas the fact is that the "operation" of the mind [essentially it's self-interaction and self-awareness] is beyond physics. That's the world we live in.

Thank you for an essay that focuses on how many have tried to say this, and how hard it is to say correctly.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Heinrich Päs wrote on Mar. 16, 2017 @ 17:47 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I read your essay with interest, especially since you (as we do) believe in the importance of altered states of consciousness to understand mind and goals. I was a little confused about your concept of mind being "as primordial as physical reality" and as a "field" which "couples to the physical brain". First, I didn't find any argument for the first, rather strong claim. Second, if we understand consciousness as a field (as we understand quantum fields, I believe) we have the problem to understand why this field couples to (some parts of) the brain but not to other objects being composed of the same elementary fields (electron and quark fields) such as meat balls for example.

Can you elaborate a little bit on that?

Kind regards, Heinrich Paes

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 16, 2017 @ 22:33 GMT
Dear Heinrich,

Thank you for reading and for asking excellent questions. Having read your essay, I see it will be difficult to frame the answers to your questions in a comment. Some answers are already presented in above comments but I do not think you have time to read all these.

First, primordial – either awareness exists from the beginning, or it 'emerges' as some process by which dumb matter becomes self-aware. If it emerges, it is an artifact, not a fundamental aspect of the universe, and any view of the universe 'understanding itself' by evolving an artifact necessary for this 'purpose' is to me not credible. And the idea that it boils down to a 'large molecule' such as the microtubule, even less so. You note that expanded consciousness exhibits "interesting (anti-) parallels to […] triggering the quantum-to-classical transition", and mention consciousness experienced as 'dissolving'. This (more or less) is the basis of my belief in the classical continuum as reality, and the Quantum Credo as error-full interpretations of inexact projections onto reality [see my page 3]. Further you say if unitary quantum mechanics provides a truthful description of nature, then the emergence of time and classical reality depend on a local perspective on to the universe. I believe that time and space, as Einstein noted, do not exist "absent of field". Elsewhere you say that the quantum-to-classical transition is perspectival!

You treat consciousness as 'emergent' and as linked to a classical algorithm operating in the brain. This differs from my definition. The combination of 'awareness' and logical structure I call intelligence – it's here that algorithms apply. Awareness is more fundamental. You seem to subscribe to the Quantum Credo which believes classical reality emerges from quantum substrate: the 100 to 500 quantum fields that Prof. Susskind, head of physics at Stanford, proposes. You also say 'time and a definite classical (as opposed to quantum) world are necessary prerequisites for purpose and intention."

You ask: "where in the chain is the quantum-to-classical transition happening?" As I note, Zurek's long trek has gotten us no closer to the answer. As ET Jaynes remarked,

"…a false premise built into a model which is never questioned cannot be removed by any amount of new data."

In short, being very familiar with all modern theories, which have failed completely to give an integrated picture of the world, you examine the various pieces of the picture. Amazing that you can do that in 9 pages. I have it easier in that, while acknowledging the utility of the bookkeeping systems such as QFT, I observe that these are mathematical structures projected onto physical reality. That unitary quantum mechanics supports half a dozen or so interpretations is strongly indicative of this point. After almost a century quantum physicists still do not know whether the wave function is ontological or epistemological. I explain it as both but not in a brief comment. I reject Copenhagen, and have a deBroglie-Bohm-like model with particle and wave (always) properties that account for interference, while the Partition function supports the Born probability distribution. The fact that both concepts apply does not mean that they are the same thing. For a taste of the possibilities you might wish to look at my The Nature of Quantum Gravity.

In contradistinction to Schrödinger's wave mechanics, QFT treats particles as excited states of the underlying field, with a particle-per-field. This is accomplished always through the mattress spring model (see Zee) and is a simplistic way to make particles appear and disappear. As one poster put it "electrons are made from the electron field. What's the electron field made of?"

Despite Susskind's 100 to 500 quantum fields only classical fields, gravity and electromagnetism, appear as real, measurable in the lab. Quantum fields are a clever bookkeeping scheme, but artificial in nature, which is why QFT cannot calculate particle masses but must put them in 'by hand'. QFT is supported by the unrealistic Dirac equation (speed = 1.73c), inexact isospin symmetries, vacuum energy off by 120 orders of magnitude (biggest error in physics ever!), 4% discrepancy between the anomalous magnetic moment of electronic hydrogen and muonic hydrogen, 'halo' neutrons, 'massless' neutrinos, and so on. Everyone knows the Standard Model is neither correct nor complete, but lacking a better model, everyone is forced to play the game. To make it work one must introduce virtual particles, ghost particles, whatever it takes, with 20 adjustable parameters of the standard model required to fit the data. Fermi said, "with 5 parameters I can fit an elephant". So I consider particles to be real, but I don't consider the quantum fields to be real, only a bookkeeping scheme.

Mentioned in comments above, but not developed in my essay, the consciousness field couples to momentum density. For example, ions flowing in axons or vesicles flowing across synaptic gaps couple to this field more strongly. Even 'walkers' on microtubules. Living cells are chock-full of moving parts. So if rocks or meatballs couple, it's very weak. And neither has the logic structure to support intelligence (algorithmic). I believe it is necessary to separate 'awareness' from 'thinking'. One is primordial, the other is local, based on the emergence of logical structure. The problem is awareness. I don't see any problem with logical activity. The problem is to couple the two. I do this through momentum density.

I believe that, rather than supersede QM and GR with a new theory, the better approach is to remove the 'built-in' errors from QM and GR, and hope that the corrected theories reflect reality more closely and unitarily. I think that classical world is capable of explaining experience and experiments, and I think many of today's interpretations of mathematical projections are clever nonsense. As one who is outside the establishment, I need not deal with "microtubules" or "integrated information", as neither of these has a chance of explaining awareness, and, given awareness coupled to logic structure, intelligence is not really that hard to grasp.

Thank you for reading my essay and replying, and thank you for writing your own excellent essay.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Jack Hamilton James wrote on Mar. 18, 2017 @ 00:59 GMT
Dear Edwin,

Thanks for reading and rating my essay. You may like this short informal essay I wrote upon further reflection. It better sums up my argument I think you liked. Hope you make the top 3 here, looks like it!



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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 18, 2017 @ 23:54 GMT
Jack Hamilton James,

Thanks for your kind wishes. I believe the ranks get 'roiled' towards the close of the contest, but I'm happy that many seem to find value in my essay. Like many here, I'm not in it for the money, but to share ideas.

I very much enjoyed your latest informal essay, and, with your permission, I might copy it and add comments of my own at the end. If I do so I'll share them with you.

Warmest regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Shaikh Raisuddin wrote on Mar. 18, 2017 @ 15:42 GMT
Edwin Eugene Klingman,

You did not define, "What mind is?"

Does matter has its own mind? If yes then how?

What is definition of goal/purpose?

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 18, 2017 @ 23:50 GMT
Dear Shaikh Raisuddin,

I define mind as that which possesses consciousness. In my theory it would be the field. As I postulate that it is a physical field, it is substantial and has mass-energy equivalence, hence 'matter'. The 'matter' of the field has awareness of other matter in motion. The field interacts locally with momentum density, including its own, so in this case one might say 'matter is it's own mind'. A problem in current physics is that 'matter' has no universally agreed upon definition or meaning. I do not envision local instances of 'matter' containing 'mind' but absent the field. The key point from my perspective is the universal quality of the field, that interacts locally with material systems that support motion, such as neural nets with ions and vesicles flowing. A goal is a target state that is capable of being defined in some way.

Thanks for your questions. I read your essay and commented on your page.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Gavin William Rowland wrote on Mar. 19, 2017 @ 04:57 GMT
Dear Edwin

I very much enjoyed your essay, and consider it the best I have come across in the contest. Loved the analogy of the field of long grass that gets mowed, but thought an alternative one might be a dose of fertiliser where the whole place is suddenly overgrown and the paths are unrecognisable!

I agree with your statement regarding the mixing of information theory with thermodynamic entropy. Personally I think spatial dispersal of energy is the core principle of thermodynamic entropy, and there is no spatial equivalent in information entropy.

I think there are two problems for your model. One is that you seem to regard this consciousness field as ontologically separate from matter. Yes, that is fine and i agree, but what is it made of and what is special about it that endows it with the properties of mind? As we know, the determinism inherent in matter tends to imply that matter cannot make its own freely willed decisions.

Following on from that, you would need to address the question of interactionism.

I'm sure you would find my essay interesting...

Best regards


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 19, 2017 @ 22:23 GMT
Dear Gavin,

Thank you for your very gracious comment. I've now read your excellent essay and agree with much of it. You say:

"Within living things, there is no threshold of complexity at which consciousness can be said to begin."

That is key! If there were, consciousness would clearly 'emerge'. Also, you note 'learning' and 'decision' are all the way down to the cell, while "within the human brain there are perhaps 100 trillion synapses."

So one must explain how, with no threshold of complexity, consciousness is everywhere abundant on earth, each becoming conscious without crossing the threshold. And explain how one hundred trillion synapses are 'integrated', capable of pretty well understanding other similar brains, (or even cat and dog brains!). Quantum entanglement is generally 'monogamous', occurring between two particles [if it occurs at all!] Are all the quantum 'wave packets' conglomerated to produce self-awareness and feelings of happiness, sadness, pride, shame? A field solves all of these problems [and feels right too.] You ask "what endows it with properties of mind? What endows gravity with the property "Come here now!"? You say the consciousness field is ontologically separate from matter. Not so. It is a classical field, with energy, hence E=mc**2 equivalent mass or matter. I think that ideas of "determinism inherent in matter" are confused, but this is beyond the scope of a comment. A classical field is better understood ontologically than an "underlying complexity dimension".

You discuss "value ethics". I would note the fact that over millennia, across all religions, "Do unto others…" is what one would expect from a consciousness field, common to all, not from isolated, individual, 'emerged' minds trying to figure things out in a dog-eat-dog Darwinian world. In other words, a physical consciousness field that interacts with local biological flows [momentum density: ions in axons, vesicles across synaptic gaps] sensing and 'nudging', solves problems that are otherwise incomprehensible. The details of the physical field are scattered through the above comments on this page, but for a taste of the physics involved look at The Nature of Quantum Gravity.

The idealist view that the universe is at base-level "just information" is simply confused, while Spinoza's 'substance' (that which stands beneath, under-standing) is very compatible with a consciousness field that spans the universe, as occasionally sensed directly by vast numbers of people. The primary drawback to the field today lies in misconceptions associated with the Quantum Credo, but this too shall pass.

Thank you for participating in this contest and good luck!

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Thomas Howard Ray wrote on Mar. 21, 2017 @ 01:47 GMT
GeneMan, you deserve to be delighted with this essay. I certainly was.

No question for me what the consciousness field is -- it's spacetime. And that's where we always end up disagreeing. Neither space alone, nor time alone, are physically real.

That aside, though, I can validate your research personally, on a least two counts. In my youth, I dropped acid only twice, in fairly close succession. Not bad trips -- on the contrary, so very wonderful it was scary. And the focus of study was there, too; I dropped the night before an important test, got no sleep, faced down 150 multiple-choice questions at 8 o'clock in the morning and startled the proctor by finishing well ahead of anyone else--and acing the test. Of course, I was prepared, but still ...

On the other hand, the friends I had made in my short 'acid days' could talk about nothing but their acid trips. I couldn't imagine a worse way to end up.

The second count is the stroke I had almost two years ago. It left me with a bad stutter that has now all but vanished. The neurologist explained that the brain has ways of 're-wiring' and the pulmonary system has ways of shunting around broken vessels. Very remarkable, this body.

Good job!



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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 21, 2017 @ 02:40 GMT
Hi Tom,

Thanks for your comment. I'm very glad you enjoyed my essay.

While I agree that neither space alone, nor time along, exists, I also agree with Einstein that space does not exist absent of field. Vishwakarma has recently adopted this is as basic postulate:

"Space-time cannot exist in the absence of fields."

I think you might enjoy his 2016 work arXiv:1605.09236, "Einstein and Beyond: a Critical Perspective on General Relativity". Since I agree with him, and since the primordial space-time-filling field is gravity, then one might postulate gravitational field as the consciousness field, with the gravito-magnetic portion of the field being the local part that interacts with ultra-dense particles, in the manner described in The Nature of Quantum Gravity. However between adherents to the Quantum Credo and adherents to 'curved space-time' it's simpler merely to postulate the existence of the consciousness field. The particulars can be nailed down later.

I had not known of your stroke. Very glad you're healing. Yes, very remarkable, this body! The ability of the body to heal itself is probably another argument for the consciousness field.

I will look at your essay again and comment.

Thanks again, Tom. My best wishes for you.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Thomas Howard Ray replied on Apr. 4, 2017 @ 14:40 GMT

Reference to advantages of Majorana particles:

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Ted Christopher wrote on Mar. 21, 2017 @ 17:14 GMT
Hello Edwin Eugene Klingman,

I offer you some more detailed feedback on your fine "The Nature of Mind" essay.

First, I don't like the subtitle. Perhaps because of the FQXi context and/or your own physics background, it seems here (and in other essays) physics/math is given too much consideration. The deeper point - the "It is" point - is that there is something novel (and significant) going on. Great. I figured that I might be flying solo in suggesting problems with the seemingly carved-in-stone materialist perspective.

You cover a tremendous range of material which provided an education trip for me. But it was the core point about "mak[ing] the same point" that was most significant and appreciated. I find the LSD and related material important but also hyped (I will return to this later).

You might have some QM baggage, perhaps for similar reasons that Alan Kadin does (he was a fine former colleague of mine). Those arguments might be of interest to the physics crowd (and perhaps irritating some of them), but that is peripheral here. As a note of coincidence, I followed some of David Bohm's work, although I never thought that the topic was important.

Jumping into your main point, I disagree with your consciousness field point. In my essay I simply wanted to highlight some contrary examples. The rigidity surrounding scientific materialism is profound (making the rigidity about PC-ness or QM interpretations appear like little league affairs) and I hoped to get some people questioning it. The BIG point in my essay is that fundamental assumptions about genetics - in particular that it accounts for the who-we-are (behavioral genetics) and what-happens-to-us (personal genomics) angles - are simply getting crushed. Very little variable DNA available and a decade's worth of searching and what is their batting average?

That general mystery and a surprisingly large collection of conundrums can be approached thru a general premodern observation (and experience?) that there is an elemental aspect to mind/consciousness and that it transcends biology (and death). Some easy fits and general coherence are available via this route as I pointed out in my overdue book.

So yes there is something profound going on with mind/consciousness but I think it is elemental and this connection to a soul (and continuity) provides a much deeper perspective on life and its challenges.

I have been involved with meditational practices for many years and this process eventually chewed thru all the excessive optimism. Buddhist practice in the West has been sold for many years in an essentially secular fashion, largely as some form of enlightenment science. The whole process - sometimes termed locally here as the "funnsy onesy business" - grossly exaggerates the likelihood of significant enlightenment experiences. But that isn't the half of it. The real question (limiting focus to this lifetime) is whether you can make that change stick (or stay). Perhaps the most significant Western book is J. Kornfeld's "After the Ecstacy, the Laundry" which opens with descriptions of people practicing mediation who had profound (and lengthy) openings (that word is commonly used) and then went on to crash profoundly back in lay life.

How does that fit the LSD et al? A good part of the stream of truth/oneness seeking crowd that came to Rochester starting 50 years ago (to our Zen Center) were ex-drug users looking for something more. Given how difficult the Zen Center practice was, that people from that drug background could come and follow thru here speaks to the limitations of drug use. And beyond this I would suggest that with a this-life-only perspective even serious meditational practice - certainly as a lay person - is an uphill struggle. I think it is the larger context that matters (and ultimate openings are traditionally viewed as much more likely to occur post-death).

Many related points are covered in my book. I included a big chapter on religion and science. And free will shows up. Anyway it is about time that people seriously question scientific materialism.

I really appreciated your work and hope things go well for you.


Ted Christopher

Rochester, NY

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 22, 2017 @ 00:42 GMT
Hi Ted Christopher,

Thanks for your detailed feedback. As I previously commented on your essay, let me here respond to this feedback.

The subtitle directly addresses FQXi's central point, and allows me to make my central point. I think the focus of the contest and most essays is about where it should be. You mention soul, but I do not see the soul as anything material, where as consciousness is clearly connected to the material world. Either it is primordial or it is an afterthought or artifact. Surely no one thinks a dead material world without awareness somehow planned for the inevitable appearance of awareness. (One hopes!)

Yes, every physicist has QM baggage, which is why I attempted to illuminate the "projection" aspects underlying QM. Similarly, I felt your emphasis on "contrary examples" was well done and very effective. Thought-provoking –

The instinct to turn to Buddhism to 'explain' any psychedelic insight is natural:

"Measuring with hand-beats the pulsating harmony, I direct the endless rhythm.

Whoever hears this melody will join me

Whatever truth is hidden in one's own religion tends to stay hidden. You note the hype involved (yes) and I love the title "After the Ecstasy, the Laundry". And you identify the 'real question': "whether you can make the changes [in consciousness] stick or stay." That is surely what, at least initially, drives everyone who continues to partake or who turns to meditation. It doesn't stick, but the melody lingers on. At best one can hope to stop knowing so many things that are not so. Such as, perhaps, scientific materialism.

Thank you, and I hope things go well for you.


Edwin Eugene Klingman

Gavin William Rowland replied on Mar. 22, 2017 @ 10:13 GMT
Dear Edwin

Thanks for your reply, and for reading my essay. Many interesting points here! I think our two viewpoints are actually compatible in many ways. Beyond our agreement on a form of universal, primordial consciousness, your model proposes a classical mind-field while mine proposes a dimension of constructiveness. While value ethics isn't to everyone's taste, essentially what I am saying is that, were there a complexity dimension, any model of consciousness may be automatically imbued with a sense of purpose.(As I say on P9 "that is not to say that a constructive-destructive mental dimension is necessarily inexplicable in material terms")

Good luck with your essay too!


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Yehuda Atai wrote on Mar. 21, 2017 @ 20:47 GMT
Hi Edwin

Enjoyed reading you essay, especially to find that you have an Ontological perception of reality. With that perception you realized that there is a consciousness field in space/time and I assume that based on the subjective experience each and everyone of us (or all living systems) have unique consciousness field. Yet they are similar but not identical.

Up to here we see the same. Though it seems that you perceive time moving from past through present to future (time dimension of some nature) and Causality is a dominant principle in the development of a phenomenon (consciousness field). I see it differently. Time is the rate of change of existents in their relations as relating phenomena, and causality is a special case in the occurrence of phenomenon. (see my essay: "we are together, therefore I am")

Interesting essay that must continue to develop the "consciousness field".

For a good exposure for all of us.


yehuda atai

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 22, 2017 @ 02:38 GMT

What a magnificent essay you wrote. You certainly capture "I and Thou". You could leave off the 20 attributes of the schema; your insightful poetry is enough. The consciousness field is intended as the seamless seal of our shared concreteness. It is sensitive to momentum density, which is to say intensity of motion, and it spans the universe, but nowhere more spontaneously and more at home than here on earth.

I profoundly enjoyed your essay.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Yehuda Atai replied on Mar. 22, 2017 @ 07:25 GMT

Thanks for your response and your profound enjoyment of the essay.

The idea of unique consciousness field for each human resemble the idea of a unique "soul" out of a general ancient soul in Kabbalah (just a thought).

Your essay indeed a challenging one.

Hope we get large visibility and readers.

yehuda atai

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Stefan Keppeler wrote on Mar. 22, 2017 @ 09:51 GMT
Dear Edwin,

that was refreshingly different from most other entries. Thank you! Let me see if I got the outline right:

(1) You say direct experience of reality comes before mathematics. Mathematics is abstracted reality, a model, a map. In particular you reject Platonism.

(2) You write "[q]uantum mechanics is useful and correct yet some key interpretations of quantum mechanics are in error". I take this as you disagreeing with Copenhagen-style quantum mechanics -- and possibly also with many-worlds? Would you be more happy with realistic interpretations, e.g. De Broglie-Bohm or objective collapse theories?

(3) You rightly point out that already the distinction between 'me' and the 'rest of the world' is abstraction, model building, the beginning of mathematics -- although this first step comes long before what most people would consider model building or mathematics. It is difficult for us to imagine what it was like before we took that first step, but you say that it is possible and that it can be facilitated with the help of psychedelic substances: Many people consistently report an experience of oneness under the influence of, e.g., LSD.

(4) Mainly because of (1) and (3) [I'm not sure if you need (2) here] you dismiss the FQXi-question: Not mathematics gives rise to aims and intention but consciousness gives rise to mathematics.

(3a) Between (3) and (4) you postulate the existence of an all-encompassing "consciousness field". I'm not sure if you actually need to assume (3a) in order to conclude (4).

Is this a fair summary of the views expressed in your essay?

When I saw that you had many references for psychedelic reports of oneness (in the section "The nature of mind") I scrolled down, expecting to find Albert Hofmann's LSD: My Problem Child, but I didn't. In the unlikely case that you don't know this book I can highly recommend it, I think you'll like it.

Cheers, Stefan

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 22, 2017 @ 22:41 GMT
Dear Stefan,

Yes indeed. You got the outline right.

You're also correct that (2) is not needed to address FQXi. I do dismiss Copenhagen and Many Worlds, and prefer a realistic deBroglie-Bohm-like formulation. I include this because the apparent implication of the experience is that a classical field underlies reality. This is in conflict with most versions of the Quantum Credo, and therefore potentially denigrates the experiential conclusion.

Hoffman's book would have been appropriate reference. Thanks for recommending it. There's been a lot of recent interest in LSD, so I focused on more recent references.

I will read your essay and comment on your page.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Stefan Keppeler replied on Mar. 24, 2017 @ 07:22 GMT
Dear Edwin, thanks for the reply and for commenting over at my page. I also replied once more over there. Good luck, Stefan

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Daniel de França Diniz Rocha wrote on Mar. 22, 2017 @ 20:46 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I just had a very peculiar thinking about the lost of the self when taking LSD. It seems the self is lost because the brain loses its normal ability to follow a main train of though, while others goes in in low level, in the background; with LSD all background is elevated to the status of main trains of thought. This seems important because it is not possible anymore for the mind to make bracketing

It cannot isolated the essence by suspending judgement and focusing on the flow of phenomena that happens to the mind. It cannot focus on a being anymore, so the self is lost. The mind is completely free now, because, while focusing on phenomena, it cannot bracket the bracketing.

BTW, would you mind taking a look at my essay?

Thank you!

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 23, 2017 @ 03:32 GMT
Dear Daniel,

I was unaware of the term 'bracketing' as meaning "describing the act of suspending judgment about the natural world to instead focus on analysis of experience." While that seems related to my essay, I'm not sure I understand the subtleties involved with distinguishing noumena from phenomena. It's difficult to analyze exactly what goes on in a 'normal' mental state, and at least as difficult to understand distorted states.

I've read your essay, which is quite complex. I did very much appreciate your review of "The eight immortals of the animal kingdom", which is as concise a summary as I have seen. It certainly is as close to 'magic' as one can imagine, and does seem to defy evolution. You said you would explain it in the next session. Was your explanation that reproduction addresses the fact that the system will accumulate malfunctions and so makes a copy before it breaks down?

I can imagine big numbers like the next guy, but it's extremely difficult for me to envision random mutation 'inventing' this complexity. The growth of an organism is as miraculous is anything I can imagine. Thanks for describing key aspects of the process.

While the extended growth of topological organisms can be (in theory) described by math, it is not at all apparent that math has much to do with the process. You then extend the growth of organisms to societies and the 'invention' of mathematics to solve the attendant social organization issues, concluding that, "at the present time, mathematics cannot be disassociated from people." I agree with this perspective.

Similarly, while one can apply the words 'aims' and 'intentions' to the process, it is difficult to describe intention to the cell-based growth of multi-cellular organisms. The control issues are complex, and the fact that the same eight genes operate across a broad range of organisms is mind blowing. As I understand it, it is largely the frequency with which the gene is expressed that differentiates the structures.

At the end you mention the "extended Gaia hypothesis". I do not know the specifics of this hypothesis, but from what little I know, it would not seem to be unrelated to the consciousness field.

Thanks again for reminding us what goes on in order that you and I might live.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Daniel de França Diniz Rocha replied on Mar. 23, 2017 @ 09:04 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I did not raised at all the issue of consciousness in my essay. I wrote about aims and intentions, from the point of view of the definition of life I gave. So, it was about the meaning of life.

The math part, I tried to make it clear in section 1,2 and in the additional notes. Section 1 and additional, it is about that the fundamental operation life can do is an...

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Ted Christopher wrote on Mar. 23, 2017 @ 01:04 GMT
Hi again Edwin Eugene Klingman,

I leave you with a final suggestion. A core point in your essay is the one-with-the-field experience. I doubt that this is a constant and moreover think that there is a lot of mystery surrounding such experiences.

There was an extraordinary article which showed up in the New Yorker a few years ago. "Last Call" chronicled the efforts of a young man in Japan to try to help with their suicide problem. A long the way this man did a stint at a Zen Monastery. After very very arduous training he had an enlightenment experience which was described. As in a number of cases that I have come across it wasn't a one-with-the-field event (or least not in a memorable way), but it entailed a profound and seemingly miraculous shift in his self-understanding and also "energy" was mentioned. A very significant and sober article.

Finally, for an individual whose remarkable insights came with no apparent connection to drugs or meditation, you might look at the book "And There Was Light". What a life that guy lived.

Good luck,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 23, 2017 @ 04:35 GMT
Hi Ted,

I agree. I doubt there is any 'constant' aspect of the experience. However the 'one-with-the-universe' experience seems to be the most characteristic aspect that can be put into words. I would be the first to agree that there is a lot of mystery surrounding such experiences.

There is no implication in my essay that drugs or meditation are the preferred way to self-understanding. I merely relate the fact that over centuries, very many people have reported such a state of consciousness, and the recent brain scans document that something out of the ordinary is occurring. That occurrence and the experience is, in my mind, compatible with a field, and relates to FQXi's topic of 'mindless math'.

Thanks for the references to the article and book.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Natesh Ganesh wrote on Mar. 23, 2017 @ 19:15 GMT
Dear Edwin,

A very interesting piece of work and breadth of it is impressive. I do not (immediately) agree with 'the consciousness as a field idea' but it is definitely given me food for thought.

My favorite line in the essay was this "An error repeated often enough becomes the truth." that I feel applies really well to how machine learning and the brain is thought about now.

I would appreciate your thoughts/comments/feedback on my submission titled "Intention is Physical", where I take a more physically grounded approach to this problem.



PS: I remember coming across your microprocessor design book as a young engineering undergrad in India. I am glad to have a chance to interact with the author.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 23, 2017 @ 21:22 GMT
Dear Natesh,

Thank you for your kind comments. Of course I will be pleased to read your essay and comment on your page.

No one is expected to immediately agree with the consciousness field, as physics has generally adopted the Darwinian Credo for over a century. If it gives you food for thought, then the essay succeeded.

I think the statement about error, repetition, and truth that you focused on is very key to my essay, so you discerned this well. It is equally a pleasure for me to interact with someone who benefited from one of my textbooks enough to still remember the author!

My very best wishes to you,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 24, 2017 @ 05:10 GMT
Posted to Natesh Ganesh's essay page:

Dear Natesh,

I very much enjoyed reading your most impressive essay. Since you have read mine and commented, I will look at possible correlations, based on the assumption that one of us is actually representative of reality. In fact, even if my essay is correct about the universal nature of awareness, your model may well 'simulate' awareness and may describe realistic governing constraints on dynamics of learning. For example you model a sense of agency as "the awareness of an action being performed as it is being performed." This is compatible with your definition of agency as "pre-reflective subjective awareness that one is initiating, executing, and controlling one's own volitional actions in the world." The key word is of course 'subjective', and that is the great question underlying whether or not the singularity is possible.

Let me first say that the qualms I have about quantum mechanics are based on common interpretations of physical reality. I have no problem at all with your usage of QM in your essay. It is interesting however that Crooks fluctuation theorem of non-equilibrium thermodynamics is essentially a classical, not a quantum analysis. Part of this, I believe, is that work is not an observable in quantum mechanics, and the relevant work averages are given by time-ordered correlation functions of the exponentiated Hamiltonian rather than by expectation values of an operator representing the work as a pretended observable. [Talkner, Lutz, and Hanggi] I'm not familiar enough with England's approach but from what you present of it it appears to be essentially classical.

Although I did not elaborate in my essay, I have in response to questions on my page noted that the field as I hypothesize it senses (and affects) momentum density, and this is very relevant. One could say to me: "You claim that the consciousness field interacts with ions in axons and vesicles flowing across synaptic gaps. Why then would not the same field interact with electrons flowing in circuitry, since the momentum density of an electron is greater than that of an ion or a vesicle?"

An excellent question. Part of the answer is that the charge-to-mass ratio of ions and vesicles makes them less susceptible to EM fields. But the key answer is that momentum density flow in the brain (and even the blood) is in 3-D and the consciousness field exists in 3-D, and our subjective awareness of 3-D is very strongly linked to these facts. Current circuitry (see my paper FPGA Programming: step-by-step) is 2-D, and even the 2-D arrangements of circuits are designed to optimize timing. There is no spatial aspect to computer circuitry, of the sort we find in the brain. If (and it's a big if) we ever reach the point where circuitry (say a nanotube network) could span the 3-D volume (with suitable I/O: see FPGA Design from the Outside In) then I would think it might be possible that a 'super brain' could be built, but this is contingent on the existence of the consciousness field as the seat of awareness! Doing without the field and without 3-D (as opposed to computations of 3-D) is one heck of a task.

In addition to the work I've done on pattern recognition and learning (hinted at in my endnotes) I also covered Steven Grossberg's mathematical model of neural circuits [The Automatic Theory of Physics (my ref.5)]. I hope you are so close to finishing your PhD that you have no use for any of this information, but, given your familiarity with my microprocessor systems design you would at least find the info readable, and perhaps even a source of ideas. I hope this discussion stimulates useful thoughts for you.

I would be very surprised if your essay does not win one of the prizes. It is an exceptional essay, and I wish you well in this field.

My very best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Robert Groess wrote on Mar. 26, 2017 @ 03:12 GMT
Dear Edwin Klingman,

Thank you very much for your detailed and richly insightful essay. Your focus on how physical reality is mapped to the brain, the only way we know how to interact with the universe, leads to important considerations about develing to ever deeper levels. I also enjoyed your point "all current quantum theories are built on... mental constructs projected onto reality". We are prisoners of our perceptions and particularly our limited language. Have you seen some of the work by language expert Noam Chompsky, on the fundamental nature that language has on the structure of an individual's brain? His contention is that communication with others in a given language is just a by-product of this structure. Very analogous, I think, with your conclusion "math is a formal byproduct, having nothing to do with giving rise to awareness, volition, or purpose".

In any event I just wanted to let you know I enjoyed your essay and have in the meantime rated it too.



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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 26, 2017 @ 20:01 GMT
Dear Robert,

Thanks for your very kind remarks.

In your treatment of Maxwell's Demon as "a situation that is laced with intent", you gather a number of well-known facts and weave them together in as succinct a presentation as I've ever seen, focused on entropy, the Landauer limit, from Schrödinger's 'aperiodic crystal' to Watson and Crick. A key observation:

"there is always a thermodynamic cost of storing information and any information that has no predictive value for the future is superfluous and wasteful."

You then apply this to the genome as a memory register of useful knowledge that has accumulated over time.

I believe this also correlates strongly with your remark about Chomsky, re: "the fundamental nature that language has on the structure of an individual brain." In The Automatic Theory of Physics [ref 5] I develop Steven Grossberg's mathematical model of neural nets and show an example neural network for sequence detection, with the example sequence "j", "oo", "ss" = 'juice'. As you note this is a neural structure, and clearly the predictive value of language is exceedingly high.

I would not have made some of these connections without your essay and your comments above. FQXi annually opens a new gold mine. Thank you for participating and sharing your insight.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Member Noson S. Yanofsky wrote on Mar. 27, 2017 @ 01:53 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman,

Thank you for a very interesting essay. I particularly like the definitions in the beginning. They set the discussion on a normal path. One needs definitions.

I am not sure advocating for the use of LSD in science is a great move. There has really been some great science done without LSD. : )

But your point about the limitations of language in describing an LSD episode is well taken. Similar thoughts are true for a mystical experience.

Thank you again for a fascinating essay.

All the best,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 27, 2017 @ 03:25 GMT
Dear Noson S. Yanofsky,

Thank you very much for your kind comments. I'm very pleased that you found it fascinating.

Please rest assured that I am not advocating for LSD use. I am reporting my experience in the context of a contest dealing with "mindless math". I note toward the end of my essay that I, for reasons of space, do not address the inevitable social problems associated with widespread use of mind altering substances. My essay is intended to be scientific in its tone and in its content. Of course I recognize the controversial nature of the topic, but this does not (or should not) detract from the information. My quotes from others may sound like advocacy, but they are true quotes, and designed perhaps to shield myself from criticism by hiding in the herd.

You are correct that some aspects apply as well to mystical experiences. In fact I address this in discussing James' work, "The Varieties of Religious Experience" written 50 years before LSD was discovered. I view mystical experience as a gift, and outside of my control. As of yet I have not been so gifted. :)

I thank you very much for your kind comments. I look forward to reading your essay and commenting.

With best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Mar. 27, 2017 @ 02:34 GMT
There many fascinating threads in this contest. Alexey and Lev Burov have one of the most fascinating. Among other things they deal with "the unreasonable effectiveness" of math for physics; i.e., Wigner's quote.

I addressed Wigner's quote in my dissertation [my ref.5]. The key physical fact underlying our metaphysical reasoning is that the universe behaves logically. This can be exemplified by the creation of 'logic gates', AND and NOT, and subsequent sequential operation of these gates to construct all (finite) logical structures. In his 2009 FQXi essay Marcel-Marie LeBel noted that

"Maths are the metric extension of logic. Logic is therefore more primitive, more fundamental than mathematics."

It is not difficult to show that from logic gates one can easily construct counters to produce [finite] numbers, and comparators to test for relations (less than, equal, greater than]. From Kronecker we have reason to believe that, given the numbers, all else follows. Grossberg's mathematical model of neural nets allows us to construct similar logic and to sequence it, and to do so with 3-D structures. Given consciousness [!!] we become aware of these math relations, but without awareness of the material source of the logic, we may do as Robert Godwin says:

"One begins by abstracting from concrete existence, and ends by attributing concreteness to the abstraction."

As Alfredo Oliveira notes:

"Mathematics is a logic language, strictly logic; however, to where it leads depends on the hypothesis and assumptions on which it is applied. Because it is logical, it leads to 'understandable' models provided that the hypotheses and assumptions are "understandable"…

"Mathematics has also the possibility of fitting whatever set of data – it is just a matter of considering enough parameters." [… such] mathematical models are usually "not-understandable", they present logical inconsistency and parameters that obviously cannot represent a physical entity."

This is extremely well stated. He continues,

"However, many consider that these models of data are correct models of reality, and so they consider that the universe is "non-understandable". That seems to be the case of Wigner,…"

To which Alexy and Lev respond,

"Physics does not make the assumption that the laws are simple."

Regardless, they can be shown to be simple.

To further clarify "the unreasonable effectiveness" I [Klingman] note that my vehicle was to teach a robot how to derive a theory of physics from measurements, as briefly indicated in my endnotes. Thirty years later Schmidt and Lipson applied this theory via pattern recognition algorithms to

"automatically search motion tracking data captured from various physical systems…"

They found

"Without any prior knowledge about physics, kinematics, or geometry, the algorithms [the robot] discovered Hamiltonian's, Lagrangians, and other laws of geometric and momentum conservation."

This agreed with my theory. However what I found most fascinating was that the 'type' of law that the system found was determined by what variables were presented (to the robot observer). They discovered:

"… if we only provide position coordinates, the algorithm is forced to converge on a manifold equation of the system's state space. If we provide velocities, the algorithm is biased to find energy laws. If we additionally supply accelerations the algorithm is biased to find force identities and equations of motion."

I believe this is reasonable "proof" that the laws are simple.

This comment does not address life or consciousness. It addresses the question of the "unreasonable effectiveness" of mathematics, and falls on the side of "complete reasonableness" of mathematics, as it depends from logic, which can be demonstrated physically. To dispute this I believe requires that one demonstrate physically something that is not logical. And such a demonstration should not depend upon mathematical structures that have been projected onto physical reality, as described in my essay.

This in no way detracts from the beauty of mathematics, or the mystery of life and consciousness, but it does [I believe] remove the mystery of mathematics.

I thank FQXi for enabling such fascinating discussions.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 27, 2017 @ 04:13 GMT
In the above post I misquoted Lev and Alexy Burov. They did not say

"Physics does not make the assumption that the laws are simple."

Instead they said:

"Physics does make the assumption that the laws are simple."

I apologize to Lev for misquoting him. It does not change the sense of the above post, but it means that Lev and Alexy agree more closely than I implied. In other words, they are in agreement with the results of my final "proof".

And this does not change anything about the masterful quotes attributed to Alfredo.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Alexey/Lev Burov replied on Mar. 27, 2017 @ 23:33 GMT
Dear Edwin,

Strangely for us, your posts above disappeared from our page. If you did not intended this and wish to see there the same or updated version of your post, you are more than welcome to do that. In any case, I am trying to answer you below.

Although the fathers of physics always believed in the simplicity of the laws of nature, and this belief was generally confirmed with regard to the well established theories, I still agree with Wigner (as well as with Einstein and Penrose), that it is a great mystery. As we are writing,

"The combined presence of these three qualities [elegance, universality and anthropness] allowed for their discovery by great minds, and for that reason, it seems that the most appropriate term, uniting all three, is discoverability. A universe whose laws satisfy the Discoverability Principle (DP) of being elegant, universal and anthropic we suggested to call Pythagorean. It could be even that the laws of our universe constitute the simplest possible set, compatible with the DP. The only so far available explanation of this amazing quality of the laws is that they come from the highest mind that created our universe able to not only be inhabited by intelligent beings but cosmically cognized by them."

When a mathematical structure of the hypothetical law is given, the best fits for the constants can be found by a proper program, with the data provided. However, what neither robots nor their human creators can do is to provide for the universe to be Pythagorean.

Thanks for your compliments in our address and best regards,

Alexey Burov.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 28, 2017 @ 00:26 GMT
Dear Alexy,

I managed to get rid of the post on your page in which I misquoted you. I probably will not repeat it since we seem to disagree on the Wigner issue. However I've noticed that there are other issues that we do agree on, and I may comment on these issues on your page.

Thanks for your understanding, and for your many meaningful comments throughout.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Alfredo Gouveia Oliveira wrote on Mar. 28, 2017 @ 00:49 GMT
Dear Edwin

It is very kind of you to give such relevance to my words. I really do not think that they deserve it but I am glad that you think so.

You say several important things, namely the robotic experiences. Very interesting.

About the role of mathematics, I have a defined understanding of the issue, from which results my line of research. I see the problem as...

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 28, 2017 @ 19:02 GMT
Dear Alfredo,

I believe your words are relevant. As succinctly stated in the quotes and as reiterated in this comment.

When the hypotheses are 'understandable' the logical application of math (a concise language) leads to an understandable theory. When the hypotheses are not understandable, such as Goudsmit's projection postulate, that "the projection of spin on any axis is +1 or -1", then the model, represented by Pauli matrices projected on to reality, is not understandable and leads among other places to Bell's theorem. Prof Susskind claims that "our brains did not evolve to understand this." The fact is that Goudsmit proposed nonsense: the projection is not on "any" axis but always on the axis defined by the local B-field. There are a number of such places in physics where the train left the tracks, and so we live with a model that Feynman says no one can understand. So I agree with your succinct summary of the situation in physics.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

David Pinyana wrote on Mar. 28, 2017 @ 11:24 GMT
Edwin, I see you will be one of the winer of this first essay contest... congratulatios, I already read your essay and rated it.

Please, consider to have into account my essay which main proposal is:

"A book that could revolutionize the future of Cosmological Physics: Aristotle, Newton, Einstein,…"

The Dynamic Laws of Physics (and Universal Gravitation) have varied over time, and even Einstein had already proposed that they still has to evolve:


NEWTON: F = m.a

EINSTEIN. E = m.c2 (*)

MOND: F = m.a.(A/A0)

FRACTAL RAINBOW: F = f (scale) = m.a.(scale factor)

Or better G (Gravity Constant) vary with the scale/distance due to fractal space-time: G = f ( Scale/distance factor)

(*) This equation does not correspond to the same dynamic concept but has many similarities.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 28, 2017 @ 19:07 GMT
Dear David Pinyana,

Thank you for the kind remarks. I will be happy to read your essay and leave a comment on your page.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Mar. 28, 2017 @ 20:23 GMT
Posted to Alexey and Lev Burov's thread:

On another thread [Robert Groess'] you made notice of a quote from P. Anderson:

"In fact, the more the elementary particle physicists tell us about the nature of the fundamental laws, the less relevance they seem to have to the very real problems of the rest of science, much less society."

The statement is not unlike Steven Weinberg's remark, that

"The more comprehensible the universe becomes, the more it also seems pointless."

David Berlinski, a mathematician, remarks:

"He had a point. The arena of the elementary particles… is rather a depressing place, and if it resembles anything at all it rather resembles a florescent lit bowling alley seen from the interstate, tiny stick figures in striped bowling shirts jerking up and down in the monstrously hot and humid night. What is its point?"

I suspect the 'stick figures' are Feynman diagrams. [By the way, if you have not read Berlinski's The Devil's Delusion, I think you would enjoy it very much.]

Anyway, you then asked, "If it is so, what do you think is the value of the particle physics for the humanity?", and you discussed the high cost of particle physics research, questioning the payoff.

The Higgs candidate has been found, as was to be expected by anyone who has read Andrew Pickering's Constructing Quarks, and supersymmetry, once felt to be a requirement for the Standard Model, is nowhere to be seen. No other particles are predicted [only resonances]. As you know from my essay, I view physics, particularly quantum physics, as mathematical projections onto physical reality. Due to its appropriateness in many physical situations the statistical nature of quantum mechanics delivers the goods. In particle systems quantum field theory is essentially a bookkeeping system, based on a simplistic 'creation' and 'annihilation' formalism. I believe it is primarily a way to fit theory to data.

In contrast, I've found over several years that the predominant model from which QM is often heuristically derived is Stern-Gerlach, and physicists, after approximately a century, still do not understand the physics of one silver atom in an inhomogeneous magnetic field. In fact, I am, with others, building an experiment that will significantly affect QM if our results are positive. We're self-funded, and, if successful, will likely have more impact on "real world" physics than the next few years operation of the LHC. So I agree with your implied sentiment.

In short, high energy particle physics is, I believe, a dead end, whereas low energy physics and bio-physics has a bright future.

My very best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Alexey/Lev Burov replied on Mar. 29, 2017 @ 00:54 GMT
Hi Edwin,

I am copying the response to you from my page.

Many thanks for a lot of interesting things in your post.

Now Berlinski is in my Kindle collection, promising delicious reading tonight; thank you!

Sorry that I have to disagree that "no other particles are predicted [only resonances]" (if I understood you correctly). Certainly many elementary particles were predicted in various years and on various grounds: positron (and thus entire anti-matter), neutrino, all quarks, weak bosons, and Higgs boson, of course. All these predictions were based on belief in mathematical elegance of the laws of nature, shared by great physicists.

Asking the question about the value of the Particle Physics, I do not mean to diminish it; my goal is just to study opinions, circulating in the scientific community. Strangely enough, I hear only about byproducts and curiosity, as if there is no direct value and as if human curiosity does not have millions of other targets. My own vision on that is indirectly expressed in our "Moira and Eileithyia" and "Pythagorean Universe", and it seems that the value I see in the fundamental science is a top secret for the colleagues.

I am intrigued about your planned experiment intended to clarify QM. Do you have something published on that? I wish you success, of course!

Our best wishes,


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Alexey/Lev Burov replied on Mar. 29, 2017 @ 04:23 GMT
"No scientific theory touches on the mysteries that the religious tradition addresses. A man asking why his days are short and full of suffering is not disposed to turn to algebraic quantum field theory for the answer. The answers that prominent scientific figures have offered are remarkable in their shallowness. The hypothesis that we are nothing more than cosmic accidents has been widely accepted by the scientific community. Figures as diverse as Bertrand Russell, Jacques Monod, Steven Weinberg, and Richard Dawkins have said it is so. It is an article of their faith, one advanced with the confidence of men convinced that nature has equipped them to face realities the rest of us cannot bear to contemplate. There is not the slightest reason to think this so."

Berlinski, David (2009-08-26). The Devil's Delusion: Atheism and its Scientific Pretensions . Basic Books. Kindle Edition.

Edwin, many thanks! Berlinski has a good chance to become one of my favorite authors.

Alexey Burov.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Mar. 30, 2017 @ 00:00 GMT
Dear Alexey and Lev,

Certainly you're right. New particles can pop up at any time. But theories have a way of shaping the data. And while the Standard Model predicted the Higgs for decades, it has not, to my knowledge, predicted any new particles for decades. And SUSY was a must-have!

The Standard Model does not explain neutrino mass, and does not know whether the neutrino is its own antiparticle. It cannot predict the masses of particles. Nor are the three families of particles explained. The SU(3) symmetry, instead of being a pure symmetry, which means equal masses, actually treats masses that differ by two orders of magnitude. Most symmetries in physics are approximate in this manner.

I believe the Standard Model has run out of fundamental particles to predict. My own particle model predicts no new fundamental particles (only resonances of known particles) will be found. I'm not suggesting that they shut down the LHC, but perhaps one should think long and hard before building a successor collider.

You ask about our experiment. A paper on viXra:1605.0226 presents the model behind it. The original experiment required the ability to measure the position of a single deflected silver atom. This turned out to be beyond our resources. We have produced a beam of silver atoms but we cannot detect the position of single atoms. However there are other issues, as explained in "The Stern-Gerlach Experiment Revisited" [arXiv:1609.09311] and it does appear that we will be able to answer questions of precession that are still unanswered. The 'revisited' paper was published September 2016, so you see that 95 years after Stern-Gerlach there are key unanswered questions.

I'm happy [and not surprised] that you like Berlinski. He is one of my favorite authors.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Daniel de França Diniz Rocha wrote on Mar. 31, 2017 @ 22:27 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I think you did not notice my answer to you post on my essay, since you don't get notification when you post on other peoples discussion, so, here it goes a copy:

Dear Edwin,

I did not raised at all the issue of consciousness in my essay. I wrote about aims and intentions, from the point of view of the definition of life I gave. So, it was about the meaning of...

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 3, 2017 @ 21:12 GMT
Dear Daniel,

Forgive my delay in acknowledging your answers to my questions, and thank you for them. It is difficult to manage reading all the fine essays in this contest and time is short. I have read your essay twice and consider it an excellent contribution.

Good luck in the contest and my best wishes for you,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton wrote on Apr. 1, 2017 @ 08:36 GMT
edwin, congratulations on being in an extremely rare category of scientist that's prepared not to be scared shitless into total full-on pathologically-objective denial, as most scientists are, by following the rabbit-hole of "i perceive i'm conscious, therefore consciousness is real, therefore..." and carrying on the chain of logic from there.

put another way: you passed the litmus test of demonstrating intelligent self-analysing feedback, modelled "yourself" in an abstract way as separate and distinct from the outside (real) world, and (using logic) concluded that consciousness is real. hurrah!

... did i get all the buzzwords in there? ;)

question for you: where does intelligence *actually* reside? or, put another way: in what "substrate" would you deduce that intelligence exists? (i explore this in my own essay so i would be interested to hear your views on the same).

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 1, 2017 @ 23:27 GMT
Dear Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton,

Having read your essay I now know why you are so enthusiastic about mine!

We differ primarily in terminology. If you review the definitions I begin my essay with, you will find that consciousness, defined as awareness plus volition, is essentially 'content free'. When one adds logical structure (always reducible to ANDs and NOTs) one can obtain specific structural physical reality of some sort, and if such structure is dynamic, then the consciousness field can couple to it and this constitutes intelligence. [You might read my response to Natesh Ganesh above at Mar 24 @05:10 GMT].

If, further, one postulates that physical reality of the particles derives from the "condensed" field, then it is probably appropriate to speak of the consciousness field as "Creative Intelligence". You capture the essence of this when you say:

"…no sentient being is intelligent. We – and our minds – are merely riding on the back of [I would say "embedded in"] an inherent and fundamental property and characteristic substrate known as "The Universe": the "Field" [the consciousness field] of "Creative Intelligence". We are literally borrowing its capacity to support thought"

You have stated this as well as it can be stated.

The substrate is the field itself. I prefer not to state more specifics until I can back them up. And I feel closer to being able to back them up, but as you note: "100% certainty is a pathological state of mind."

The discontinuity for me was, after decades of trying to understand consciousness, when I decided (almost 100% !) that it was a field, and asked myself how it could interact with matter. I raise my arm against gravity. How does 'consciousness' make that happen? After postulating how the field physically couples to matter, things started falling into place, and have continued to do so for the last decade. I do not believe one can mathematically represent awareness (except as an iterative feedback loop that oversimplifies and really misses the point of what awareness "is") but I do believe that one can mathematically describe the interaction or coupling of the field to matter [ideally viewed as particulate 'condensation' of the field].

Luke, you have far too much info in your essay to respond to in a comment, but I would say your instinct, your intuition, your understanding is essentially correct [or at least agrees with me!]. Thank you for writing and submitting it.

My very best wishes,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton replied on Apr. 2, 2017 @ 12:33 GMT
hi eugene, gave a different response on my thread, continuing here: dr hankey indeed comes up with a formal mathematical framework (quantum mechanics "with a twist") which operates in that fourth quadrant "quantum mechanics plus chaos theory".

regarding tests to see if the existence of an intelligence "field" can be created: would you agree that, logically, it would comprise energy, and would thus have mass, which in turn could (in theory) be detected?

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Member Marc Séguin wrote on Apr. 2, 2017 @ 05:08 GMT
Dear Edwin,

Interesting and ambitious essay! You say that mind projects mathematical structure onto physical reality, while I have a tendency to see things the other way around, with mind projecting physical reality onto mathematical structure... But at least we both agree that mind/consciousness has an essential role to play in any ultimate theory of the fundamental nature of reality! :)

Your essay, like mine, has a strong metaphysical bend, and you are not afraid to ask the big questions. You say: "(...) either one seamless reality exists, or the universe is simply a sum of disjointed parts, which have no conceivable reason for "hanging together" in such elegant and enduring fashion." Why indeed is the universe hanging together so well? I agree with Einstein that it is one of the most challenging questions, and I humbly try to address it in my essay without having to simply postulate that "one seamless reality" (the one we happen to observe) exists. Warning: my essay contains multiverses, computations and strange loops --- viewer discretion is advised!

Getting back to your essay --- your consciousness field certainly has affinities with some kinds of panpsychism, a position that I find fascinating. Have you ever checked the work of Galen Strawson? On YouTube, there are many clips of him being interviewed for the "Closer to Truth" TV series. Amazing stuff!

As I was reading about LSD in your essay, I was reminded of "What Should We Do With Our Visions of Heaven and Hell?", a 2012 blog post by John Horgan for Scientific American, where he describes his own experience with chemically induced altered states of consciousness. If you haven't read it, you should check it out! As you say, psychedelic substances, in the context of physics, may yield ideas not previously thought, even if they are not necessarily good ideas!

I have my own ever-evolving views about the ultimate nature of reality, but I always enjoy being confronted by other points of view, and that's why I found these FQXi contests so interesting. Even if I do not agree with some of your positions, I congratulate you for having written such an interesting and popular essay.



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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 2, 2017 @ 21:46 GMT
Dear Marc,

Thanks for reading and responding as you did.

My approach is essentially based on my analysis of experience. I believe your approach is based on the movement of physics toward the abstract, largely driven by confusion about the wave function. As you note in table 1: "it's been almost a century and we still don't know!" As I indicated, I believe this is due to errors of interpretation, and I am working to elucidate some of these errors, leaving only the "good stuff".

I see some confusion about consciousness, probably starting with "mind/minds". You say "Mind" might be too complex to be the fundamental level, while I think the field is universal, physically real, and simple. I do not think mind as conscious awareness is amenable to mathematical (or any other) description, but I do believe it's interaction with the material world is mathematically defined. In my view it switches the meaning of words to go from mind as "universal consciousness field" (with affinity to panpsychism) to "sane mind" versus "insane mind". The little-m 'mind' is a locally stable (or 'resonant') field awareness of local physical brain/neural net. The awareness is of local brain structures, some of which may be physically (organic) diseased and some of which are 'psychologically' diseased (mistreatment or misinformation). Each is undoubtedly unique! This is a different meaning from the big-M 'Mind' as universal field. I find the treatment of this somewhat inconsistent in your essay.

You say "for all we know, free will and the ability to act intentionally towards goals might be basic attributes of consciousness", whereas I define consciousness as "awareness plus volition/free will". In my model 'goals' arise from 'intelligence", which is the local interaction of the field with physical brains/dynamic logical structure. Goals have nothing to do with the fundamental consciousness field, only with local "resonances" or local 'minds'. When you say "maybe we're all one mind anyway", the "we" includes the local brains, while the "one mind" is the universal consciousness field. It may not be a category error, but it needs explanation.

By the way, I loved your figure 4. Forgive me, but possible titles might be "Picture of confused puppies", or "Proofs of confusion". The genius of the men represented is undoubted, but I believe their ideas are very confused. As already noted, this is driven by quantum confusion, specifically the fact that, after a century, we still can't agree whether the wave function is epistemological or ontological (or, with Q'bism, perhaps solipsisticological!). I also loved your road sign!

As you noted, we both agree that mind/consciousness has an essential role to play in any ultimate theory of the fundamental nature of reality! From your excellent essay I believe your instincts are right on. I hope you continue to evolve your table 1. I've seen suggestions on your comments page for additional rows or columns.

Thanks for interacting with me. I enjoyed your essay and believe it should rank higher. This troll business of '1's is depressing.

My very best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Vladimir Nikolaevich Fedorov wrote on Apr. 3, 2017 @ 05:09 GMT
Dear Edwin,

With great interest I read your essay, which of course is worthy of high rating.

I agree with you

«Thus any errors in general relativity and quantum theory that have been repeated for 100 years are now viewed as truth. Hence the Quantum Credo is generally treated as religious truth, not subject to argument.»

«The classical physics of gravity and trajectories of objects were intimately experienced and practically understood. For centuries symbolic and logical relations applied to physics yielded predictions of reality that closely matched experience.»

I'm glad that you have your own position

«My approach is essentially based on my analysis of experience. I believe your approach is based on the movement of physics toward the abstract, largely driven by confusion about the wave function. As you note in table 1: "it's been almost a century and we still don't know!"»

«The Quantum, Platonic, and Darwinian Credos are narrative-based abstractions far removed from direct physical experience, so we should hesitate to base our primary understanding of reality on such. Knowledge of one common physical reality is based not on mindless math but on mindful awareness of physical ly real experience.»

You might also like reading my essay , where it is claimed that quantum phenomena occur in the macro world, due to the dynamism of the elements of the medium in the form of de Broglie waves of electrons, where parametric resonance occurs and solitons are formed, wich mechanism of work is similar to the principle of the heat pump.

I wish you success in the contest.

Kind regards,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 3, 2017 @ 22:10 GMT
Dear Vladimir Fedorov,

Thank you for your kind comments. Having now read your essay I see that we agree on much. I agree the vortical action plays a much greater role than is commonly recognized, and also that the deBroglie model is the correct basis of QM. What you label "soliton potential wells of stability", I tend to think of as a 'self-sustaining soliton', and relate this to deBroglie waves induced by ultradense particle momentum. After the contest is over you might find time to look at The Nature of Quantum Gravity, which I think you will find interesting. But it does lead to a different model for the elementary particles than your model.

I believe that the density-based formulation of GR is a flat-space equivalent to curved space-time, which you seem to imply as well. However, you say that there are no particles with greater 'mass' then the electron, while I think that there are no particles with greater 'mass density' than the electron.

I am focused more on particles, so I cannot follow all your astronomical calculations, although I am impressed with the data set you have assembled and with your calculations. At this point I am still not entirely sure of your conception of gravity. In short, I agree with the essentials of vortical action, deBroglie-like solitons induced by particles, and gravity as fundamental, but our models of these particles diverge.

I think both of us wish to push mystical quantum mechanics in the direction of intuitive classical physics, which I address to some degree in my essay.

Thanks again for your comments and for contributing your ideas to the FQXi community.

My very best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Gary D. Simpson wrote on Apr. 4, 2017 @ 03:02 GMT

Many thanks for the kind words and your vote of support. Once again, your policy of voting late has proven to be wise.

I am very pleased to note that many of the essays that I scored highly are in the top group of essays, even though I vote early. And my prediction has proven to be true. You caused quite a stir:-)

BTW, this forum is a genuine pleasure for me. It provides a learning opportunity that I cannot obtain anywhere else ... let's face it ... there aren't a lot of PhD mathematicians and physicists running around to question ... plus they are pretty busy.

Thanks Again and Best Regards,

Gary Simpson

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Steven Andresen wrote on Apr. 4, 2017 @ 08:52 GMT
Dear Edwin

I have taken James Putnams advice to read your essay, and although I havent finished reading it, it is certainly shaping up interesting. I will continue and return here with comment.

My essay has only received 8 ratings, which is two short of the ten required for prospectively qualifying finals, with few days till close. Would you be willing to review my essay opening, with a view to read on if it should capture your interest please? James seems to think you might find it of interest. It is certainly unique and novel perspective, I can promise you this much.

Thank you for your consideration

Kind Regards

Steven Andresen

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 00:03 GMT
Dear Steven,

Sure I'll read your essay. And I look forward to your comments.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Gary D. Simpson wrote on Apr. 4, 2017 @ 11:32 GMT

I noticed your comment in my forum regarding neutrinos and nuclear decay.

FYI, I read something several years ago that the decay rate of the power supplies on the Voyager space probes did not match what was expected. By this, I mean that the radio-isotope was decaying more slowly than expected.

Also, for some reason, I was under the belief that neutron decay requires the neutron to absorb a specific type of neutrino. I don't know why I think that or where I got the idea.

Best Regards and Good Luck,

Gary Simpson

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 00:29 GMT
Dear Gary,

That's fascinating information, thanks. The background for other readers is as follows:

On Gary's thread Jonathan J. Dickau remarked that "There was some research, a few years back, showing that nuclear binding and half-life varied with the solar cycle and could potentially be used to predict sunspots. I think Ephraim Fischbach was part of the research team"

As I recalled their first paper, it was not the solar cycle that was the variable, the radiation half-life was actually varying seasonally. I responded that: "I communicated with Ephraim Fischbach, suggesting that the neutrino output of the sun, assumed constant, would be denser when the earth is closest to the sun and vice versa. If, as I believe, radioactive nuclei may be triggered by neutrinos this could account for their observed variation in radioactivity as a function of seasonal orbital position. I think they either bought this argument or were unaware of a better argument."

Now, Gary informs me: "FYI, I read something several years ago that the decay rate of the power supplies on the Voyager space probes did not match what was expected. By this, I mean that the radio-isotope was decaying more slowly than expected."

I'm very glad to hear that. What it means of course, is that as Voyager is much farther from the sun than the earth is, the neutrino flux would be correspondingly less dense. Thus if the neutrino flux is implicated in the decay rate, one would expect the radio-isotope to decay more slowly than expected.

As I remarked on Gary's page: "What a powerhouse of ideas FQXi brings together annually."

Thanks Gary, for this information.

Best regards, my friend.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Gary D. Simpson replied on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 02:02 GMT

Here is an arXiv link that discusses the subject.

These guys seem more interested in the Cassini probes though. I couldn't find what I read previously regarding Voyager 1 & 2.

Best Regards and Good Luck,

Gary Simpson

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Jonathan J. Dickau wrote on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 05:11 GMT
I just made it through your fine essay for the first time Ed..

I've been trying to focus on finding undiscovered gems that would otherwise fall through the cracks, in the neglected lower ranked essays, but now I am taking the time to read some top-rated essays and yours is certainly among the best. I will have to read certain portions for detail when I am more awake, but I am sure that I will have kudos to share then. It is interesting that; while we differ on some core philosophical issues, we seem to agree on a lot of points as well - for different reasons. And I see you are reflecting on my comments elsewhere, given what I see in the entry above.

So I shall return here with more comments later.

All the Best,


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Jonathan J. Dickau replied on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 16:25 GMT
I looked at the comment on Gary's page..

Regarding your conversation with Fischbach, and a possible neutrino flux / radioactivity connection, I have long thought there should be such a connection myself. With neutrinos as the carriers of spin, we are immersed in a spin field and its variations should affect something. More comments on your essay later.

All the Best,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 6, 2017 @ 22:19 GMT
Dear Jonathan,

I look forward to your comments. Also, I just reviewed your page, and was surprised that I have not commented. I read your essay when posted, and thought I had responded. I will review it again and do so.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Richard J Benish wrote on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 08:31 GMT
Dear Dr. Klingman,

I found your presentation and novel approach to the subject among the most refreshing and coherent ones of the bunch.

Your critique of the FQXi problem question and transition to the primal importance of shared experience (by contrast with shared abstraction) is clear and convincing. An early draft of my own essay adopted a similar track, from...

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 23:05 GMT
Dear Richard Benish,

Thank you for your gracious remarks. As I noted on your page, I think you are to be congratulated on inventing Rotonians, somewhat analogously to Edwin Abbott's inventing 'Flatland'. Your essay is hard to absorb in one reading, and you challenge what everybody "knows", so it's a hard sell. I think proposing an experiment to test the theory is a huge plus, but again, if everyone "knows" the results, they turn off quickly. There is no solution to this problem of human nature except persistence. Maybe "crowd-funding", if you could attract enough attention to the experiment.

We do agree that new conceptions of space, time, matter, and gravity are needed for unification. And I think we agree that removing built-in errors from general relativity is a good place to start.

Thanks for reading and commenting and thanks for participating in FQXi and introducing Rotonians.

My best wishes,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Dizhechko Boris Semyonovich wrote on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 11:18 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman!

Meet up the New Cartesian Physic, based on the identity of space and matter. You need it, because it showed that the formula of mass-energy equivalence comes from the pressure of the Universe, the flow of force which on the corpuscle is equal to the product of Planck's constant to the speed of light.

New Cartesian Physics has enormous potential in understanding the world. To show this potential I ventured to give "materialistic explanations of the paranormal and supernatural" is the title of my essay.

Visit my essay, you will find there the New Cartesian Physic. After you give a post in my topic, I have to do the same in your theme


Dizhechko Boris

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Graham Walker Cookson wrote on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 12:28 GMT
Response to The Nature of Mind: mindless math = projections on reality by Edwin Eugene Klingman

Since I did not record my community ID number, my rating of your essay must be recorded as public. In any event, you do not need my rating for the judging of your essay in this contest. FYI you got a 10 from me. Beyond the game, I would like to comment on my reaction to your ideas.


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 23:24 GMT
Dear Graham,

You say "My contention is we have missed something because we have been too embedded in the process."

If I understand you, you are hypothesizing a Binary Reflective Field that manifests the universe every Planck time ~ 10**43 per sec. You also mentioned "the smallest unit of space" but I'm not sure you defined it. You say this would "predict a reason for a maximum...

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Jeffrey Michael Schmitz wrote on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 16:57 GMT
Dear Edwin,

This was the first essay I downloaded, but it ended up one of the last for me to review. When I first read this essay it seemed like it was yelling at me, later the voice seemed clear and calm above the noise. Both reactions were for the same reason: many contest topics were presented in a question and answer form with a list of terms and definition. Having read a few essays that were a little (or completely) off topic, and other essays that made no attempt to be “stand alone” the form of this essay became a voice in the wilderness. This essay does slowly build points, but sometimes (for this reader at least) work was needed to connect points.

You approached this topic like a philosopher or artist; I approached this topic like a plumber or construction worker. I was watching construction workers when I realized that they were part of a process took oil from the ground, which redistributed heat and by products combustion and thereby unknowingly helping entropy. Bacteria are doing the same work, but at a scale at the edge between the quantum and thermodynamic realm. My essay did not do well and, if possible, I would like you to give it an honest review to help me with future essays.

Thank you,

Jeff Schmitz

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 5, 2017 @ 23:38 GMT
Dear Jeff,

Thanks for coming back to my essay! And thanks for the "yelling" critique. I'll think about that. It's difficult to know why some essays do not do well, complicated by the trolls who deal out '1's for who knows what reason. Anyway I read your essay with your request in mind. It's difficult to say. You write well. Your info is generally understandable. One of your...

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Jeffrey Michael Schmitz replied on Apr. 6, 2017 @ 02:58 GMT
Edwin Eugene Klingman,

Thank you for the help. I did have headers at one point, but then I got the idea for the theme of keeping things small and that changed everything. I cannot find other writings about the minimum of intelligence everyone is looking for super intelligence, so things like mistakes must be part of an intelligent system is something you could only see when working at the building block level. During the writing the idea of learning as finding patterns and a (once again) minimal mechanism for learning that explained dominent (sp?) and recessive traits popped into my head. In short, I was learning as I was writing, which is like texting while driving. I wish I could find someone in this field to talk too or a paper that existed.

All the best,


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Steven Andresen wrote on Apr. 6, 2017 @ 03:24 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman

My favorite essay to win 10/10. I have rarely come across such important and useful points being made, nor explanations so well crafted. You have taken issues I feel I am generally aware, and crystallized them very meaningfully in my mind. I will take these lessons with me on my travels.

We cannot remove the human, from our equation of "Humans in the attempt of science". However you have mapped out and articulated many of the pitfalls to watch out for. Dont confuse the map for territory! Your essay should be the first class confronting new students to scientific educations, and the lesson reaffirmed regularly. I cannot think of any other single consideration, that would contribute so much benefit to improvement of scientific method.

Your model of the mind as a field theory is intriguing, well evidenced by your explanations, and easy to understand. I wish to experiment the theory with LSD, or better still, stroke! But alas I dont know where to source that I might trust, and the self induced stroke might not result as desired. Only oneness with the universe would do! Where might I be able to follow up on the greater body of your work? You are somebody to pay attention too.

Thank you for taking the time to read and positively review my essay. Knowing something of your mind from reading your essay, makes your opinion all the more real for me.

I will be keeping your essay and referring back for study. Good luck, I hope you come second after me ;)

Steven Andresen

PS, I have posed a question for you on my page, if you will please?

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 6, 2017 @ 21:50 GMT
Dear Steven,

Thank you for your exceedingly kind words. I'm very happy that you are able to make good use of the ideas expressed in my essay.

I also agree that it would be a good idea to teach beginning students (in any field) not to confuse maps for territory. I too feel strongly about this.

My essay reported real experience, both mine and others, but it is in some ways only a narrow slice of what is an overwhelming experience. The "oneness" I reported is almost universal, however there are other aspects that are almost certainly highly dependent upon the individual brain doing the experiencing. For this reason I would not advise any competent adult either to try or not to try a mind altering substance. It is certainly not to be done lightly. Some minds may be more stable than others, and all organisms have specific allergies. A few years ago I had a horrible reaction to an antibiotic. One never knows what one's response will be to a new substance. It is certainly not to be done lightly. On top of this it has been highly illegal for decades, a non-trivial consideration. Lately there appears to be some loosening on the restrictions imposed on researchers, so you might follow the links to some of the references.

To repeat, I would not advise anyone to undertake this experiment. It is a very serious decision, fraught with implications.

I will respond to your questions about your essay on your essay page.

Thanks again for your enthusiastic response, and thanks for entering your own essay. I'm glad to see you are now well above the ten ratings necessary to qualify.

My best wishes,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Steven Andresen replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 02:06 GMT

Thank you for your words towards caution. I am already cautious towards drugs and self induced strokes. But I understand why you need to generally express this warning.

You are a champion and a scholar


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Steven Andresen replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 02:08 GMT

Dont worry about my question for now, for you are busy

Best of luck


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Akinbo Ojo wrote on Apr. 6, 2017 @ 09:10 GMT
Hi Edwin,

A lovely analysis, pointing out the areas where confusion currently pervades our physics. Consciousness to me is a biological and an emergent phenomenon arising from an underlying physics where there is no consciousness. Just like the color green of a material not existing at the level of the atoms constituting that material. You have put in a lot of physical and mental effort in your essay and I hope it will be duly rewarded as deserved.



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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 6, 2017 @ 21:51 GMT
Dear Akinbo Ojo,

Thanks for reading and responding. As I note, the origin of consciousness is narrative-based and cannot be proved one way or the other. We all have to choose what fits best with our experience and our worldview and that may be a good thing.

I found your essay impressive and full of surprising information. I enjoyed it very much. I see you have been quite busy my friend, congratulations!

My best wishes,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Ines Samengo wrote on Apr. 6, 2017 @ 20:34 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene, I read your essay long ago. This is my first participation in an fqxi contest, and I now realize I should have carried some notes to organize my dialogue with different authors, because the network of interactions is so complex, that it is difficult to keep track of it all. I thought I had written to you before, but it seems I haven’t.

I found your ideas bold and creative. I fully agree with you that we have no proof that consciousness emerged from the algorithmic process of evolution. I believe however that we neither have proof that it did not. So I completely embrace your position that “Narrative cannot prove either case, it must assume one or other.” I take your proposal of a consciousness field as one possible solution, but cannot claim to be convinced of its necessity. I guess the important thing would be to state as precisely as possible, which are the predictions in which a consciousness field would differ from the Darwinian approach, and try to make progress by testing those predictions. I am afraid, however, that this means to get one’s hands in the dirty details of what exactly should be the interaction between the new field and the rest of physics. That is, to build some physics for the new effect.

The discussion of LSD and other consciousness-altering substances is interesting. I find anything altering our basic notion of the self fascinating. I do not completely see, however, why those experiences speak in favour of the consciousness field. Did you mean to say they do? I can also interpret the dissolution of the “I” that these substances induce as a result of an altered operation of the brain, the latter understood as the Darwin-evolved organ, and regulated by good-old textbook physics. Have I missed something here? Again, I do not claim that the consciousness field cannot be in play. I just state I do not see clearly in which sense these experiments provide evidence for your new proposal.

In any case, thanks for giving me new thinking material, that is what I have gained the most in this whole fqxi business. Best! Inés.

PS: I do not understand QM. I am fascinated by its phenomenology, but I still struggle with it a lot. Probably, because I do not know enough of it to have carved my neural nets deeply enough!

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 6, 2017 @ 22:03 GMT
Dear Ines Samengo,

Thank you for reading and for your excellent response. I very much enjoyed your essay and hope you will grace us annually with your thoughts.

You are correct: we have no proof of the origin of consciousness, one way or the other. We have experience of it, several abstract narratives, and what one believes is essentially a choice.

You are certainly correct also that one must get one's hands dirty dealing with the details of the interactions of the field with the rest of physics. My hands are dirty! I chose not to attempt to squeeze such material into the current essay, but the material exists, and I will be publishing it. In fact, a number of details are verbally described in the approximately 180 posts above, but I know time is short, and I'm not suggesting you go back and look there, only that some of the interaction aspects do exist, even on this page.

You said you do not completely see why the experiences I describe speak in favor of the consciousness field, and ask if I'm saying that they do. No, I am saying that we interpret our experiences and that I believe experience is more authoritative than abstract narrative. Illusion, delusion, error, etc. exist, and must be acknowledged, yet competent adults still draw conclusions from their experiences.

I spent many decades trying to understand the issues FQXi addresses, and about one decade ago finally decided that everything pointed to consciousness as a field. My first question then was how does this field interact with the rest of the physical universe. Surprisingly it took only about an hour to come up with a hypothesis, and this hypothesis has been gathering fruit for the whole decade. As I noted in the essay, my experience and my ideas favor a classical field, while the Quantum Credo believes that the classical world "emerges" from a quantum substrate. So I decided that, before presenting my classical model of reality, I had to address the errors built into QM, which has occupied me for the last few years. I hope to finish my reinterpretation of QM this year. That, hopefully, will pave the way for the physics of the consciousness field.

It's a fun life if you don't weaken.

I'm glad you found FQXi. It is a gold mine of ideas, some silly, some profound, and the participants, on the whole, are wonderful people. I hope to see you back here next year.

My very best wishes for you,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Ines Samengo wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 01:05 GMT
Wow, thanks! I truly admire the way you respond to everyone in detail - I'm so deadly slow! I will take some time to go through your previous posts, to gain a bit of an idea of what kind of dirt you have in your hands :-) Looking forward!

And yes, this fqxi business gave me a huge amount of stuff to think about, and to inquire about. A whole year long, probably!


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Jonathan J. Dickau wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 03:03 GMT
I more than enjoyed this essay Ed..

You give me a lot to think about, from the opening words to the end. As usual; it is one of the best in the contest, especially by the criterion where we attempt to explain how choice and purpose might emerge from lifeless laws - mathematical or otherwise. You nailed it on several fronts, but our views are indeed orthogonal, as you said on my page. When my essay is compared with Noson Yanovsky's, he and I are seen to reveal different bits of the same fabric and draw different conclusions based on the portion we see or emphasize. But you and I have contrasting perspectives of the same full reality - it seems.

These days; I find that the categories blend together for me, being more ranges in a continuum than separate containers. Your Quantum Credo and Platonic Credo for example are broadened in my mind, because I include Platonic explanations in the range of interpretations of QM. You may feel free to assert that I am really making QM an outcome of Platonic reality, and it doesn't matter, because the outcomes are the same. That's the great thing about quantum-mechanical variables - such things are ambiguous or obscure until the observer's frame of reference is taken into consideration.

In another blurring; some form of quantum consciousness might account for natural selection, even at the most rudimentary level. So it is best to remember that it's humans who make the categories; that nature tends to blur those boundaries is one of the points I try to make emphatically in my own essay, and I hope that you fell this one point carries weight even in your different outlook. I really admire your expositional style, so I won't pick that apart, and I've had a few wild rides aided by entheogens, but I had to hold back a belly laugh a few times while reading this one.

All the Best,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 17:19 GMT
Dear Jonathan,

Thank you for your very kind words. As you noted on your page, you could probably present the 'realist' view as well as I do.

Certainly our orthogonal views cover the same reality. One could speculate on how the orthogonality arises, whether through some orthogonal basis in experience, or simply the paths one beats into one's brain. But this, like all particle-to-person narratives, is too complex to be complete so only credos are possible at this level of explanation. And hence one 'pays one's money, and takes one's choice'.

To play the game: as there are endless possible math relations and only (in my view) one seamless reality of the universe, it is clear to me that, like any language, math can describe reality or can create fictional realities. One could consider Mandelbrot fiction. In Stephen's latest work he calls attention to and dramatically spotlights

"The gross incompatibility for observational or empirical physical science of a great many metric constraints which can be readily mathematically formulated."

In other words there's reality and there are more fictional accounts than real instances. I choose to interpret this as meaning the fiction is derived from the real world. In the long run it's whatever floats your boat.

Thanks for playing,

Have fun,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Bruce M Amberden wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 04:46 GMT
Hello Edwin Klingman,

I enjoyed your essay; it’s an interesting read.

I am not sure that panpsychism, your universe spanning consciousness field, is a good explanation for consciousness. Panpsychism is a highly controversial idea born from the frustration with the hard problem of consciousness. I do agree that mathematics is a semantic construct invented by people to analyze and describe the natural world, but I would not call that the Platonic Credo. We invent and use mathematics because it works – it’s a pragmatic enterprise. But the question does not start with consciousness; it starts with the mindless behavior of the natural universe (as expressed by mathematical rules), and asks how do aims and intention arise? Consciousness may not be required for aims and intention to arise, but certainly consciousness should be able to express aims and intention.

I think that this question needs to be answered bottom-up, the same way that life and minds arose in the universe.

Thanks for the good read.


Bruce Amberden.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 17:28 GMT
Dear Bruce,

Thanks for your thoughts on my essay. I'm not proposing panpsychism, defined by Wiki as the view that consciousness is a universal and primordial part of all things. I'm proposing a universal field (think gravity) that interacts with all things. I think of panpsychism as mystical; a field is physical. On your comments page you note that you sidestepped the issue of mind, while I focus on mind, so it's hard to compare our two essays directly.

I think we agree that math is a construct invented by people, and that this is not the Platonic view. Your position that "the universe is mathematics" strikes me as the panpsychic approach, whether stated in this way as you do, or as a mindless "universal form of interlaced deterministic physical Turing machines". It's not at all clear to me how such entities interact with the real world.

If you read my endnotes you know that I claim that "all axiomatic theories of physics can be formally mapped with automatic machine representations." Obviously our ideas overlap significantly. If we talked for a while I suspect we would find ourselves agreeing more than disagreeing.

Thanks for reading my essay and responding.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Georgina Woodward wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 10:19 GMT
Hi Edwin, I have read, enjoyed and voted for your essay. All the best, Georgina

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 17:31 GMT
Dear Georgina,

Thank you for reading and voting. I always enjoy your essays and feel that we're largely in agreement in our views of the universe as we perceive it. As I noted on your page, I particularly enjoyed your point that

"Emergent patterns of some cellular automata are too complex to work back to the rules that formed them."

Thanks again for visiting. See you next year!

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Georgina Woodward replied on Apr. 13, 2017 @ 05:02 GMT
Edwin, you have written a very readable, interesting essay and I think that is reflected in its popularity. I am glad you put your own definitions up front as they are important for understanding what you have said in your essay. I have read it several times, and the replies you have written to others, to be sure I know what you mean. We are not on the same page.


view entire post

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Georgina Woodward replied on Apr. 13, 2017 @ 07:04 GMT
"Energy in energy out.."GW, is probably too brief. I mean energy obtained from nutrition and respiration, (supplemented or replaced at starvation by gluconeogenesis from body tissues) compared to energy expenditure by basal metabolism and physiological processes including brain activity and locomotion.

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Heinrich Luediger wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 14:48 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene Klingman,

Alternative to LSD: kiss all false ambitions (i.e. most of 20th century science and its consequences) good-by and you will see that the world is indeed One. More under “Wittgenstein” & “therapy”.

Best regards,

H.H.J. Luediger

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 17:33 GMT
Dear Heinrich Luediger,

There many alternatives in life. I don't understand science as a false ambition. Many are helped by philosophers, but LSD has been used for therapy, most successfully with terminal cancer patients, who benefit from experiencing the world as One. Life is complex. That should not be disturbing.

Thanks for reading and commenting,

Best wishes,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

James A Putnam wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 15:25 GMT
Dr. Klingman,

Very well written and highly informative. It is a successful essay on its own. There is more to your work that readers should be aware. Those who have read your earlier essays know that you have already presented the new physics that accounts for both mechanics and consciousness. I encourage readers to read your essays from previous contests to learn about physics as a more complete foundational science.

James Putnam

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 17:55 GMT
Dear James Putnam,

You were the first FQXi commenter on my first essay, and it's been a pleasure knowing you ever since. The worst part, in my opinion, about FQXi is that we are scattered all over the globe, and thus miss out on the face-to-face communications over coffee or wine.

I would, if possible, go back and change a few things about previous essays, but not much. My approach has been to lay out my model or theory, and continue to fill in details. I've benefited immensely from FQXi exchanges over the years. Every hole in my theory that someone else finds is one less hole that I have to find. I just have to patch it.

We do continue to improve. I thought you laid out your philosophy this year better than in all preceding years. Congratulations.

Again it's always a pleasure dealing with honest, earnest, goodhearted people.

Stay well, my friend,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Conrad Dale Johnson wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 16:30 GMT

I'm sorry it's taken me so long to comment on your essay, but the truth is that I haven't been able to understand the appeal of the underlying idea, the universal consciousness field. From what I can tell, my own consciousness is about as far from universal as it could be. And though I had my share of astonishing experiences with LSD, back in the day, I wouldn't have taken them as evidence of anything but the superpowers of my neural system. In fact, I found that what distinguished this particular hallucinogen was that it made "reality" feel utterly relative, as though I could just step into a different world at any time. Fortunately, that didn't incline me to believing in a multiverse.

But your essay is nonetheless eminently interesting, clear and readable. And what I really want to say is that I appreciate your open-minded and welcoming attitude in your comments to my work and many others'... your participation in the community here is exemplary, and I'm grateful. It goes a long way toward setting a tone that helps remarkably different viewpoints connect.


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 17:41 GMT
Dear Conrad,

Thanks for your insightful response. In my hypothesis, the (self-aware) consciousness field provides something that I cannot imagine would spring up by itself anywhere with no common or understood underlying source or mechanism. The field is "content free". Content is provided by the unique brains with which the field interacts, all of which share the universal "I am" of conscious awareness but each of which has unique experiences leading to each local mind, which is, as you say, "about as far from universal as it could be."

Just as I found it amazing how many Nobel prize winners admit to the controversial act, I am somewhat surprised by how many FQXi participants also acknowledge it. This seems higher than the percentage of the general population, but it's hard to have good numbers, considering.

Thank you for your gracious comments about my open-minded response to others. I try. We're all to be grateful to FQXi for the opportunity to present our best ideas and interact with others and learn from others.

I think this is a pretty special group of people.

My best regards and wishes for you, Conrad.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Aron Barco wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 21:45 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I really liked your essay. Definitely, psychedelics in my opinion is something seen as dangerous or undesirable for political reasons rather than objective data.

I would like your opinion in the following matter you mentioned

"Weckbach points out that from m Godel we conclude that “relatively simple mathematical systems, although they are

consistent, must remain incomplete” but the mathematical system cannot itself formalize this conclusion!

This is a powerful argument against “the complete formalizability of all that exists.” He concludes math

speaks to us; the message is: “there is more to existence than mathematical structures ever can deliver.”"

But I would read Godel theorems as saying that mathematics is more that formalizations and therefore any approach of mathematics that aim to reduce them to a simple set of axioms and inferences is doomed to incompleteness. So I can not see how from Godel one can infer the gap between existence and mathematical structures. Not that I think they are isomorphic or anything of that. What I am missing?

Also, I agree that psychedelics may allow us to rewire the brain but I will also agree with Raold Duke

"That was the fatal flaw in Tim Leary's trip.

He crashed around America selling

"consciousness expansion" without

ever giving a thought to the grim

meat-hook realities that were lying

in wait for all the people who took

him seriously...

All those pathetically eager acid

freaks who thought they could buy

Peace and Understanding for three

bucks a hit. "

Bottom line I think there needs to be more research in how chemical affect our brain and in particular LSD.

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Aron Barco wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 21:45 GMT
I forgot to sign it as I am Yafet and not Aron.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 22:54 GMT
Dear Yafet,

I'm glad you liked my essay; thanks for responding. I agree about the politics and the history of mind-altering substances, and I say in my essay that I am reporting on a theory of mind to apply to 'mindless math', and that I do not discuss the social implications of mind altering substances, which are considerable.

Quoting Weckbach, Godel's conclusion is not mathematically formalizable, serving as an argument against "the complete formalizability of all that exists."

You read Godel's theorem as saying that mathematics is more than formalization… I confess to not knowing how to interpret that. I could make a guess, but as I am sure you prefer an informed answer, I would suggest that you ask Stefan Weckbach this question, as he is more capable than I on this subject.

You are correct that Tim Leary not only 'popularized' LSD but is largely responsible for the circus (that you well described) that shut down even research into the powerful substance. It is not a simple problem.

Having just read your essay (which is excellent) it is Gadamer's split between subjective and objective that I attempt to solve with the physical field of consciousness. The split has occasionally been healed through religious and/or psychedelic experiences, but never treated physically to my knowledge. The nature of self-awareness will always be a mystery, but I propose that the field possessing self-awareness couples to the real world and thus becomes part of the real physical world.

I like that you say "expressions of laws do not directly cause anything, mathematical or otherwise. What causes the sun to rise every morning are natural mechanisms, not our laws; these are just human heuristic artifacts…", and (later on) "are not created in a historical vacuum."

I generally agree with your conclusion, and offer the consciousness field as a solution to your problem #1, and, interacting with a sufficient neural net plus history, to problem #2.

I realize that more details of the physical field are required to be taken seriously and plan to provide those details in future.

Thank you for reading and commenting and participating in this contest.

My best wishes,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Peter Jackson wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 23:30 GMT

Early hours in the UK, off to a wedding early and in a final check I noticed I hadn't applied the rating to your essay! Just done so. Well done. (trust you hadn't forgotten mine).

Best wishes


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Lorraine Ford wrote on Apr. 8, 2017 @ 00:24 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I agree with your notion of an "inherently conscious, purposeful universe".

Best wishes,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 8, 2017 @ 01:43 GMT
Dear Lorraine,

Thanks for your comment.

I've read your essay before and felt that you perhaps over-stated your case. After reading again, I'm re-thinking this. I believe I got hung up on terminology, while the concept is good.

Either there is free will or not, and I do believe in free will. I'm not sure if there's a better example of the universe "generating its own rules". This must somehow begin with "fine-tuning" and proceed at the level of every living thing. It is my basic assumption, but the one I have the least explanation for.

As usual, your essay is chock full of things I agree with, from computers deterministically processing symbolic representation of higher-level subjectively experienced information, etc., and computer's inability to achieve self-awareness (which I've expanded on with Natesh Ganesh) to "no deep understanding of emergence", and the view of it as progressive restrictions on degrees of freedom.

As one who believes information comes into existence when an energy threshold triggers a structural change ('in'-forming the system) , I agree with you about "must derive from local physical structures".

I tend to depart some from your views of quantum mechanics, but that does not detract from your essential points; it only changes the way in which your points are achieved. It is hard (impossible?) to argue with your point that "the universe is all there is … that necessarily generates its own rules." If there is free will, this must, in some way, be an ongoing process.

I'm glad I re-read your essay!

Also, I'm sure your living with and loving your local nature-life does not hurt your thinking about these things. The wildlife diversity on our ranch is soul-refreshing, making it easier to see into the nature of things.

My very best wishes,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Lorraine Ford replied on Apr. 10, 2017 @ 00:24 GMT
Thanks Edwin. Our views about the nature of reality have so much in common. And I think it is true that living amongst nature, letting nature speak to us, makes it “easier to see into the nature of things.”

Congratulations on coming first in the community ratings! I sincerely hope that this translates into winning a prize. I hope that this is not a “Foundational Questions” Institute in name only!



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Gary D. Simpson wrote on Apr. 8, 2017 @ 04:04 GMT

Let me be the first to congratulate you. It is 11:02 Houston time which means the voting has ended and YOU Sir are on top:-) Well done and well deserved!

Best Regards and Good Luck,

Your Friend,

Gary Simpson

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Steven Andresen wrote on Apr. 8, 2017 @ 04:10 GMT

Congratulations, a job very well done and a deserving win. You must be ecstatic

Steven Andresen

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Alexey/Lev Burov wrote on Apr. 8, 2017 @ 04:17 GMT
Dear Edwin,

I am glad that you are the the first in this race! Congratulations and the very best wishes!

Yours, Alexey.

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Jonathan J. Dickau wrote on Apr. 8, 2017 @ 04:23 GMT
Congratulations Ed!

It's wonderful to see you finish at the top of the pack, with a convincing lead, now at the finish of the qualifying round. Let us hope this sends a message to the judges, and breaks the curse encountered by Dr. Corda when he finished on top but won no prize at all.

Continued luck going into the finals.

All the Best,


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 13, 2017 @ 23:53 GMT
Lorraine, Gary, Steven, Alexey/Lev, and Jonathan,

Thank you for your congratulations! Despite the noise of the '1'-bombers, I attach some meaning to the votes of my coauthors, and I feel honored. As I address some of the more sacred credo's of the establishment, this may not translate to a prize, but for the moment, I'm keeping an open mind.

My best to all of you,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Steven Andresen wrote on Apr. 11, 2017 @ 03:07 GMT

Just a quick message to say, you have helped me in an unexpected way. I have a friend Johno who recently suffered a stroke, and you have helped me to understand something toward what he might be going through. Its a strange thing, and it doesnt feel appropriate to speak in terms of positives. But something of what I have learnt provides a kind of relief that what he is going through is not painful suffering. In some ways it helps me to know how to help him rediscover himself. Thank you.


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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 13, 2017 @ 23:56 GMT

I am sorry to hear that. Jill Bolte Taylor's book My Stroke of Insight is available, and she also has a talk on TED that you might wish to watch.

Good luck to your friend!

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Luis Patiño-Cuadrado wrote on Apr. 13, 2017 @ 10:14 GMT
Dear Mr. Klingman:

Just a brief question: do you think that math is the symbols we use to describe it?


Luis Patiño Cuadrado

P.S. I wrote an essay for this contest as well It's brief because I have been living under such abject material poverty and physical illness that mere survival takes most of my time. Read it if you will, and comment on it, please.

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 14, 2017 @ 00:06 GMT
Dear Luis Patiño-Cuadrado,

Thank you for your question. I haven't spent a lot of time trying to define math, but I generally consider the symbols as formally standing for the underlying relations, all of which derive from logic.

I'm very sorry to hear about your abject poverty and physical illness. I've experienced both in life and admire you for being able to participate in FQXi under such circumstances.

I will read your essay and comment on your page.

My very best wishes for you,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Richard Conn Henry wrote on Apr. 25, 2017 @ 22:48 GMT
"As Feynman noted, "no one understands quantum mechanics." Well, I DO understand quantum mechanic: if observations have the character of numbers (and they do), and if simple symmetries are present (and they are), then quantum mechanics follows automatically. No mystery at all! Read about it here:

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 29, 2017 @ 00:01 GMT
Dear Richard Conn Henry,

I believe you oversimplify things significantly. Position measurements on a free particle are unnormalizable; you need to 'box in' particles to make your scheme work. Your abstract 'measurement', and invocation of complex 'i' and assumptions about probabilities are ill-defined. Even you admit it is 'vaguely paradoxical'.

For example, to obtain EPR from Stern-Gerlach, one must make assumptions about position measurements that are justified neither by actual measurements, nor by Dirac's equation, but are based on projecting math structures onto physical reality and then believing that such structures are reality.

In short, you have a nice two-page 'derivation' of a formalism that you then insist that physical reality must fit, "no matter how bizarre". Experiment hardly needed!

I'm sure the students you teach buy your presentation hook, line, and sinker, but I do not believe that you make a convincing case for the dramatic conclusions you draw. You simply accept the Quantum Credo as truth, and ask everyone else to do the same.

I agree with you that QM is not one of the mysteries of the universe. It is simply a statistical technique for handling structured measurements represented by corresponding mathematical structures. It ignores the physics of any transitions between states entirely, and merely represents "final" states of the system, in statistical fashion. No mystery there.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Apr. 28, 2017 @ 23:44 GMT
A Brief Overview of Consciousness Field

On the FQXi Essay Contest 2016 thread a number of fascinating conversations have unfolded. I've enjoyed these discussions very much. My essay proposes a primordial field as the basis of consciousness, and some might view this as a 'disembodied' consciousness. Fields are known to embody energy and momentum (and hence equivalent mass) so I would like to describe a speculative theory to "flesh out" such a field. This theory conflicts with current credos, so I have spent much time recently analyzing such credos in terms of built-in errors. I cannot yet support my theory in every detail, so I tend to be shy about providing details, but this leads to an incomplete picture of my theory. For this reason this comment will aim for an overview that ignores details, even details that I believe I can backup.

The Standard Model of Particle Physics attempts to make all forces, including gravity, converge to one at the 'beginning', but fails to do so. Instead, let us begin with gravity as an immensely dense field, outwardly expanding such that the equivalent mass's kinetic expansion energy equals its negative gravitational energy, yielding zero total energy. This is known as a "free lunch" model. That is, we begin with one field with zero total energy, divided into positive kinetic energy of expansion plus negative binding energy of attraction. This field expands into time and space, both of which mathematically fallout of the Self-Interaction Principle, which is the principle that, if nothing exists but the one field, then any evolution that occurs in this field can only be through self-interaction of the field with itself. The field initially expands with perfect spherical symmetry, but at some point symmetry breaks and the field (which is a perfect fluid) becomes turbulent. If one can (and I think I can) show how a turbulent vortex evolves to a stable torus, then one can produce particles. At a certain stage (which I gloss over here) of particle creation the stress involved engenders electric charge. The universe now adds the electro-magnetic field to the gravito-magnetic field with which we started. The Nature of Quantum Gravity describes how induced gravito-magnetic circulation yields a deBroglie-Bohm-like wave that, subject to the Partition function, (distribution of energy) yields Born-like probability. A hyper-dense gravitational field thus 'condenses' to quantum-compatible particles. In other words non-linear gravito-magnetism [C-field] has spun off 'particle-like' gravity with a 'charge-like' aspect. Nuclear, atomic, molecular reality follows.

Gravity 'attracts' mass (equivalent self-mass), hence it interacts with itself. It must therefore, in some sense, be aware of itself and of the (condensed-from-the-field-itself)-local mass with which it strongly interacts. The rule describing the (self)-interaction of the local field with local momentum density (see Nature of Quantum Gravity) was discovered by Maxwell, Heaviside, and Einstein separately and my Principle of Self-Interaction leads to Newton's equation, Maxwell-Einstein equations, the Klein-Gordon equation and Schrödinger-equation compatibility. The primordial field had the 'free will' or ‘volition’ to break symmetry, form (condense into) particles, and consciously interact with the particles which are, in essence, merely pieces of itself, of which it is in some sense aware.

Given enough time this self-organizing, self-aware field develops molecular machinery for 'sensing' electromagnetic vibrations (in the field) and, via neural nets, recognize patterns that develop in the 3-D brain, which exists in the 3-D space-time of the 3-D field. [I have ignored nuclear forces here, but they are explainable in this model.] The locally dense, locally stable, forms of most interest are living fauna and flora, and the peak examples are you and I. The field is locally [and universally] aware of all this, as there is nothing but the field, from the very beginning, and this field is characterized by consciousness (awareness plus volition) and energy and local self-aware self-interaction.

My weakest (meaning I haven't proved them yet) assumptions are 1.) Symmetry-breaking 2.) Vortex-to-torus-with-charge-condensation. Otherwise, the field is all there is and all that's ever been. As I explain in my essay, physicists have projected mathematical structures onto reality, describing certain aspects of reality, and then have confused these projections with reality.

With warmest regards for my fellow local field entities,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

PS. Most people think of 'gravity' in terms of Newton's gravito-statics, which is analogous to electrostatics. But gravity is dynamic and hence induces a magnetic-like behavior which is non-linear and self-interacting as described in The Nature of Quantum Gravity. Note that no new energy is added to the universe by this specific hypothesis and the expected behavior of this field is compatible with most of what we know. However, our current credos which have incorporated errors for almost a century have problems with the above picture.

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 7, 2017 @ 22:04 GMT
On another thread Lorraine Ford replied on May. 5, 2017 @ 23:24 GMT

Dear Edwin,

I think your idea of a unified primordial consciousness and creativity must be correct, but I can’t see the field bit. My model of a multitude of particles of consciousness and creativity suffers from not being able to explain how particles could have once been unified.

From my point of view, your concept that the primordial reality is or becomes a conscious, creative field assumes the creation of primordial absolute (not relative) categories like energy and momentum (that would be represented by us as symbols), and the creation of primordial relationships between these categories (which would be represented by us as equations, and a graph of the equations and their numeric values), with particles being a consequence of this situation, just like mass is a consequence of this situation. This would lead to the question of why living things can demonstrate consciousness and creativity, whereas particles and atoms are merely a consequence of category relationships in this model.

I see particles as being unlike their properties e.g. mass. I think that unlike mass, particles are not due to relationship between pre-existing categories like energy and momentum: I see particles as being a different type of thing. I think particles could perhaps only be related/unified by consciousness and creativity, because they seem to me to “pre-date” categories like energy and momentum. I assume that categories like energy and momentum can only exist from points of view, and that particles are the points of view, and that the particles in fact created these category and relationship rules.

There can be a “no free lunch” situation for energy; but there cannot be a “no free lunch” situation for rules, unless you assume that all rules exist, but then you still need a pre-existing higher-level algorithm controlling the rules. One way or another, you need 1) rules, and 2) a generator of rules.



Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 7, 2017 @ 22:11 GMT
Dear Lorraine,

Thanks for your thoughtful response. Apparently the field as continuum is a difficult concept to hold onto. You are not the only one to say this. Quantum field theory, which is essentially an accounting or bookkeeping system, portrays a field as 'particle exchange' and many seem to accept this. As you point out, this leaves the problem of how the universe is or could ever have been unified. If, as I suggest but cannot yet prove, the field (which contains energy and hence equivalent mass) "condenses" to form particles (simply a denser, more stable, local state of the field) then it does not change the character of the unified field, and the universe remains a unified whole, with local density variations that we think of as 'matter'. The field interacts with its own energy and with the dynamics of the 'condensed' energy or matter.

The existence of dynamic (energy and momentum) matter as a local phenomena enables local awareness and will. Will is key. It is what prevents the deterministic "turn the crank" universe epitomized by the block universe. As for particles, my own goal is to "explain" the known particles as evolving from the unified field. I understand the difficulty in grasping that a field embodies consciousness (essentially including the new rule generation capability that you envision) but positing it in 'particles' does not solve anything in my opinion. In fact, the Standard Model assumes bosons, neutrinos, quarks, and electrons – at least three generations of the fermions. Why? How does this relate to consciousness? Instead, the universal field sees all of these particles, and may guide them into more complex structures that build today's world.

Recall that local structure can introduce both 'logic' and 'information' thereby potentially adding 'intelligence' and 'memory' to awareness and will. [Will is a synonym for volition, that is, will includes the ability to act or move.] It is difficult for me to see how the particles that comprise the physical logic structure or record of information can get the overview of logic or information that the encompassing field can obtain. And what to do with the information. The field is not immaterial! This goes back to a possible misapprehension of the field as "disembodied".

In short, any theory, in the end, must explain the known particles and particle families and their interactions. A theory of consciousness that does not include physics is metaphysical, and there are old and honorable metaphysical theories going back millennia. So I'm very focused on integrating consciousness with the physical world as we know it.

Your analysis that a "free lunch model" works for energy but not for will is very astute! I agree 100%. The negative energy of binding and the positive energy of expansion can balance perfectly (in theory) whereas the positive act of will that (in your terminology) "changes the rules" would seem to be unbalanced (unless one can somehow associate a 'negative will' with determinism.) That might be worth thinking about.

An April 2017 issue of Physical Review Letters PRL 118,151601 14 April 2017, begins with the statement:

Perhaps the most important and powerful concept in physics is “energy”.

The field has energy and the field is the primordial absolute (as you say). The field obeys energy/momentum rules that allow particles to 'condense'. [That's not a good word, but it gets the point across.] So particles do not "predate" energy and momentum. They are "one with" energy and momentum (including angular momentum).

So I disagree with your emphasis on particles (as I understand it) as the "prime carrier" of consciousness. They are, in my view, the prime carriers of determinism, i.e., mindlessly obeying the rules. They don't have a 'view' so much as a "local identity", characterized by mass, spin, charge. The 'view' is held by the field, which is aware of the particles but is not as "frozen" as the particles. On a two or three particle basis this doesn't seem important, but when one tries to get 'global awareness' out of quadrillion of separately aware particles in the brain, or tries to heal the body from illness or damage, I believe only the unifying, encompassing, interacting field can achieve this level of comprehension and control. Any focus on particles as the prime players must ask how these countless particles interact to achieve forming ideas in the brain or healing the body. It seems to me one must bring a field into the picture. But asking one (actually each one) of the countless particles to be aware in any meaningful sense of all the other countless particles and so enable a global solution seems to me a bridge too far. On the other hand the presence of the field spanning all of the particles, locally aware of each particle and its behavior can guide the behavior in a global fashion.

In this context, allowing particles to 'generate' new rules seems to require the particles to grasp the big picture (of a brain or body) when in actuality particles are almost certainly local in any awareness. I see no way for each local particle to grasp the big picture and correspondingly implement a 'new rule' that is appropriate. On the other hand it is in the nature of the field to grasp/average the big picture and perhaps 'nudge' a little here or there. [The 'nudge' might have huge consequences, in the scheme of things.]

– – I use a voice recognition system to type and when I said 'nudge', the system wrote 'knowledge'. Do you think it's trying to tell me something? – –

It seems highly likely that the expanding primordial field was initially 'spherically symmetric', but that is an essentially 'scale free' state of existence. The act of breaking symmetry, and thereby introducing local turbulence seems to me to be the first act of will, or 'generating new rules' in the universe.

Once this act occurred, it could occur again. But endless arbitrary rule breaking is chaos and has no possible goal, therefore the 'inertial' behavior of particle mass allows structure to be imposed locally, and the field, aware of and interacting with this inertia (mass and momentum) can guide ever-increasing structure, that constitutes our beloved world.

Thanks again for thinking of these issues and contributing your novel insight.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on May. 11, 2017 @ 21:02 GMT
On another thread Lorraine Ford replied on May. 11, 2017 @ 01:22 GMT

Thanks Edwin. We share the view that consciousness and will are the basic aspects that, together with physics and other sciences, can make sense of the universe.

Re particles: I don’t see particles as being able to “grasp the big picture”, only a small very local picture, commensurate with their lack of complex structure, and their relative inability to interact with very much information from the environment. And with the possible exception of physics and philosophy (and maybe religion), most of our human views are also only a small very local picture, though much bigger than any view that a cell or an atom could have.

What you would call “will”, I would also describe as “creativity”. I would say that what is created is: laws-of-nature, which we would represent as equations; and what we would represent as initial numeric value equations for variables/categories (and as the system and interactions progress in time, the numbers become more complex). Which leads to the issue of how these “rules” exist:

I think the situation is more complicated than just a set of disconnected equations and numbers. I would think that the early situation at any point particle in the physical universe is perhaps representable as something like: “law1 AND law2 AND… number1 AND number2 AND…”. I.e., to me there must be a higher-level grouping, representable using an “AND” relationship, which means that more definite structure exists in the early universe than just laws-of-nature “mindlessly” existing, as asserted by this year’s FQXi essay theme.

So I was wondering what you make of the above situation?

Also, with your model, how do you see points-of-view evolving out of a continuum which presumably only has an overall point of view? And do numbers exist absolutely, or do they only exist in context?

Re whether a “positive act of will that …"changes the rules" would seem to be unbalanced”:

Is everything always conserved? I think that rules must be inherently unbalanced in the sense that they are “added” to the system, but from within the system. And do quantities have to be completely balanced? The authors of “On conservation laws in quantum mechanics” [1] say: “We raise fundamental questions about the very meaning of conservation laws in quantum mechanics and we argue that the standard way of defining conservation laws, while perfectly valid as far as it goes, misses essential features of nature and has to be revisited and extended.”



1. “On conservation laws in quantum mechanics”, Yakir Aharonov, Sandu Popescu, and Daniel Rohrlich,

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 11, 2017 @ 21:03 GMT
Dear Lorraine,

Thank you for taking time to think about my arguments before responding.

I’m glad that you don’t see particles as being able to “grasp the big picture”, only a very small local picture. How then do you account for our grasp of the big picture?

You ask how my model can explain points-of-view evolving out of the continuum which presumably only has an overall point of view. That’s a good question.

For discussion purposes, assume that the “overall point of view” is “I AM”. At every level of awareness, this view holds. How do we get beyond that? We might assume that the “strength” or “degree” of awareness is a function of the density of the field. Initially, post-Big Bang, the entire field is concentrated into an incredibly dense primordial field. As the field expands, it correspondingly creates space [Einstein: there is no space absent of field] and correspondingly becomes less dense. After symmetry-breaking local turbulence in the field produces denser regions of the field, which is still a continuum, but no longer a homogeneous or uniform continuum. The local density corresponds to local energy density, hence local mass density, and any relative motion of the denser regions corresponds to local momentum density. In my model it is local momentum density that the field senses, and the field grows stronger around such momentum. (I think it’s easier to see this in the equations describing field behavior, but let’s use words.) If the field locally “condenses” or “crystallizes” into local stable particles, this process continues (as described in The Nature of Quantum Gravity). So we now have a unitary universe with “weak regions” of consciousness field and “strong regions” of localized consciousness field, still 100% a continuum, but not a uniform distribution of consciousness field. The “creativity” or “volition” that the field embodies can be expected to have more presence and effect in localized dense regions of the field (represented as particles) than in the weak density of the field (say in interstellar space.) The fundamental nature is still “I AM”, but the awareness of “I AM” is probably stronger in the local dense regions. The field is still an undivided continuum, spanning all space, but it is not a uniformly distributed continuum, which would make for a very boring existence.

Eventually (~14 billion years) the local stable regions evolve to the complexity of life forms, all of which experience ‘I AM’, but this is maximized around the particles and local momenta of breath, blood, neuronal flows, etc. This is the local action that enhances and intensifies the local consciousness field. If the many reported unitary experiences are true, then the local field can become more aware of the universal extension, but since there’s not much momentum density associated with the weak non-local field, it is normally lost to awareness in favor of local action. Nevertheless, the awareness is key, and the awareness of the local field in which the 3D body/brain is embedded is where understanding is posited. The field experiences all of the local momentum occurring in brain ‘flows’ and comprehends the whole activity of the brain in a way that individual particles cannot possibly do.

I think the key concept here is that the field remains a wholly connected unity, i.e., a continuum, even when it is not a uniformly distributed, homogeneous field. ‘Denser field = stronger awareness’ may oversimplify, but it’s essentially true. Boundaries are arbitrary – when does the hamburger that you eat become “you”?

I hope the above helps some with how the field “grasps the big picture” in a way that particles cannot. To oversimplify again it’s as if life forms are simply stable, dense, dynamic regions of the field, with correspondingly stronger identification as “I AM”. With no structure, the self-awareness ‘I AM’ is possibly the whole extent of conscious awareness. Local dynamic structure supports something like “I am stronger here” or perhaps “something is interesting here, let’s push”. The more complex the dynamic structure, the more complex the ideas and awareness. All of the 3-D structure and motion in the brain and heart and gut is simply the local field, ‘condensed’ and ‘uncondensed’, self-interacting with itself and with neuronal flows in the optic nerves and audio nerves that tell it of “other” regions of the universal field.

You ask very good questions about “rules” which I will answer in another post.

Best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 11, 2017 @ 21:04 GMT
Hi Lorraine,

In the above post I present a picture of a real physical field, possessing energy and momentum. The field is a continuum, spanning all space, but not uniformly distributed. The field can be stronger in local regions and grows stronger in the presence of momentum density. [Momentum is mass in motion, so no motion is essentially nothing to be aware of.]

You say you think the situation is “more complicated than just a set of disconnected equations and numbers.” And you ask me what I make of the situation.

If, as I propose, the primordial field – all that existed – is the consciousness field, which is postulated to have self-awareness and volition, there is nothing else in the universe beside this field, hence nothing to interact with except itself, every “part” of which knows ‘I AM’. Nor is there anything other than self to be aware of, and this includes “rules”. The volition, or action, of the field on itself is the only possible action in the universe. There is nothing else.

The field acts initially to expand. Why? Not because of the “laws of thermodynamics”. These are derivative. It acts because it can. Coming into existence may be the first creative act, and expanding in space may be the next creative act. But the most significant creative act is almost certainly the breaking of the spherical symmetry that shatters the boring homogeneous isotropic expansion and introduces turbulence, vortices, and localization, leading to non-uniformity and the possibility of different density sub-regions of the universal field.

I believe this expansion and creative “shattering” of the uniform whole occurs naturally. It is the nature of the field to exhibit volition, and to correspondingly be aware of the degree of local volition, later recognized as momentum density.

Let me be clear. The consciousness field acts. It is a physical field but it does not consult something outside of the field to ask what action is allowed. In fact, if it followed the rules for spherical symmetric expansion, it would probably forever be spherically symmetric, as these “rules” did not tell one how to “break symmetry”.

Your description of this act of will as creativity is as good a way as any to describe it.

When you’re a kid, you learn how to “rub your tummy and pat your head” by observing others. The ability to simultaneously do two unlike motions is learned through doing, not through any study of rules for rubbing one’s tummy while patting one’s head.

There is doing and there is describing. We do many things, like growing from a sperm and an egg into you and me. We did not do this by consulting the rule-book. The 'rules' in the DNA would mean nothing if the 3-D universe with energy and momentum were not at work translating coded structure into protein structure, etc.

Eventually, for practical or other reasons, my local region of the field, my body-with-brain, of which I am self-aware, becomes aware of your local region of the field of which you are most self-aware, and we (creatively) decide to communicate. To do so we create language, which – of course! – must be compatible with our brain structure (and probably further structures our brain).

After millennia, when all of us ‘sub regions of the consciousness field’ have learned to communicate with local life forms via local languages, some of us found it useful to count. This (per Kroneckar) led to mathematical language in which we structure sentences as equations or rules.

These “rules” are descriptive, they are not controlling. The physical universe of the consciousness field does what the consciousness field does. As it is a physical field, there are certain 'natural' behaviors that avoid logical inconsistency, but the field does not "follow rules". The rules we create are based on observation we make of what the universe does. We can then follow these rules, in a computer say, to model or simulate the behavior in question. We can even use the rules to structure our brain activity to project possible behaviors that we have never seen. If we can then convince the universe to behave in this way through a contrived invention that we call “an experiment”, then we can conclude that our description is pretty good and has utility. But projecting these descriptive mathematical structures onto physical reality does not make them real. Rather, it seems to actually hide physical reality from those who believe in these structures as ‘real’.

But our mathematical description is for our use only. The universe doesn’t give a damn about that and it surely doesn’t “follow the rules”.

For this reason, I believe your original conception of creative will as “generating new rules” somewhat misses the point, as it implies (I believe) that the physical universe is “following rules”, and the rules are changing. I believe the universe is doing what the universe does, with universal consciousness but not uniformly distributed consciousness, and our mathematical description of how we think the universe behaves has no physical reality or consequence. We sometimes have different models describing the behavior of the universe and the models agree. Surely we don’t think the universe consults two models, chooses the ‘right’ model, and follows its rules.

At least I don’t think so.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Luis Patiño-Cuadrado replied on Jul. 2, 2017 @ 09:55 GMT
And yet, here you are using ideas like continuum, distribution, logical consistency and most importantly randomness ("no rules"), which are mathematical ideas and which I claimed in my essay are the essence of reality by explicitly affirming that reality needed continuous, non-computable mathematics to exist, as opposed the discrete math of computation ("simulation hypothesis" or the...

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H. G. wrote on May. 12, 2017 @ 09:20 GMT
Dear Edwin Klingman,

I have read your essay several times and I am impressed. It is really difficult to compress everything to a couple of pages and still keeps a clear thread. Besides that, you state that consciousness is a field and in your last post to Lorraine you describe this field as a continuous field.

Both are correct but your assumption that it an unknown field isn’t right. So the problem is your present concept about the known quantum fields and their mathematical nature. But don’t get me wrong, nearly all the mathematics is applied mathematics and its purpose is to simplify reality so we can calculate predictions. So you are right, most of all the mathematics has nothing to do with the correct description of ultimate reality in the universe. Because physicists use mathematics as a tool, they have no idea about the twofold nature of mathematics.

Of course it should be nice when we have the opportunity to discuss the subject here. Unfortunately, the site of FQXi is not so well suited to discuss everything (no images, etc.). If you want to exchange some thoughts about the subject, you can contact me at

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Author Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 12, 2017 @ 22:22 GMT
Dear HG,

I don't believe that I stated anywhere explicitly that it is an unknown field. In fact, if it possesses energy and momentum, it would be difficult to fit such a field into our known models (ignoring 'dark matter' and 'dark energy'). Instead, my focus is on describing the behavior of a field capable of self-awareness and self-interaction. For pedagogical purposes it is best to present the behavior in standalone fashion, to avoid collision with prior conceptions. If one explores the consequences of this description of behavior, and then notices the congruence with known field behaviors, one is more likely to take the concept seriously.

I'm glad that you seem to agree that mathematical description has little or nothing to do with ultimate reality in the universe. As I noted elsewhere, the Standard Model is based on symmetry SU(3)xSU(2)xU(1) which assumes "equal mass" among members of the group, yet, for example, the (u,d,s)-quark model actually deals with a 100-fold mass differential. Obviously the order implied by this symmetry is not an exact order.

Yesterday, after writing my last post, about the universe not "following rules", I spent about an hour in a Pacific cove watching the waves break on complex rocks and then wash up on rocks and pebbles. I saw nothing to make me change a word of the post.

I often think it would be nice if FQXi allowed images, etc. Nevertheless it's a remarkable vehicle for exchanging thoughts and opinions. I believe my address is in The Nature of Quantum Gravity, linked to above. I would be interested in whatever thoughts you have about relevant known fields.

Thanks for reading and for your positive comments.

My best regards,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

Steven Andresen wrote on Jun. 29, 2017 @ 05:06 GMT
Hi Edwin

Congratulations once again on the success of your essay. And also thank you once again on placing your review for my essay detailing a Darwinian Universal emergence.

I'm also very pleased with the reviews my essay received, and for the community score that tallied. However I havent engaged with the community in discussions about it yet, either in a sense that might test it...

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Steven Andresen replied on Jun. 29, 2017 @ 09:11 GMT
Give nature an energy potential and it will invent a Darwinian circumstance of emergence. Take early oceanic life for example, algae invented a way to exploit the suns energy in a process known as Photosynthesis, which then founded the base of a food chain that blossomed through a diversified range of organisms of increasing levels of character and complexity. Krill that eat the algae, in turn eaten by small fish, eaten by bigger fish and squid, eaten by tuna, sharks, birds, dolphins and whales.

Auv cosmological emergence is a like circumstance of Darwinian emergence, as a result of an as yet unidentified natural energy potential. Like the algae, this Auv elemental field of space foundations the base of a system that has compounded ever higher levels of universal order and complexity, in the form of atomic and cosmological structure. This is how elaborate Gluon and photon characteristics have emerged in the universe, and the circumstance whereby their activity is enabled by a metabolism of an Auv elemental field of space.

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