This is the third article in a series discussing quantum mechanics and consciousness. It relies heavily on the previous two articles, therefore, they are required reading if you wish to read this one.
“Free Will As A Function Of The Multiverse Can Explain Quantum Paradoxes”^ – introduces the “ocean analogy”, which is used to explain why we observe certain behaviors in quantum mechanics experiments. It also explains the basis from which free will operates and how it is influenced by knowledge.
“The Quantum Super-System”^ – proposes a name for the environment in which our existence takes place and underlines similarities with quantum computing, debating the finite and infinite aspects of this environment.
To summarize, I theorize that our consciousness switches from one universe to the next by means of choices made by our free will. These universes form a probability cloud called the multiverse^ which is, itself, part of a succession of such systems of varying complexity (either larger or smaller in scale than our universe). This stack of probability clouds is called the quantum super-system.
Using this hypothesis, we can find exotic explanations for certain aspects of life, while in the same time questions will arise regarding what (if anything) lies beyond our current existence.
One of the most interesting phenomena that we run into nightly is dreaming. The reason why dreams occur is quite well understood by science, but a good explanation regarding their content still eludes us. Is it just our imagination acting up as a result of seemingly random electrochemical interactions? What if we try to understand dreams as a side-effect of us being a part of the quantum super-system?
The phenomenon of quantum entanglement^ seems relevant: it is possible that when our brainwaves^ get into a certain pattern, certain atoms inside our brain experience entanglement with other atoms, situated in a parallel universe.
I will refer to the ocean analogy I presented in my first article^. When we’re asleep and dreaming, free will usually shuts off (lucid dreams^ are a special case) and our consciousness rests in the current universe. In this state of rest, the light that is our consciousness shines at its brightest. This is why during this period, we can connect with universes which were undetectable in a conscious state. It’s similar to discerning far-away objects when standing still.
The multiverse is so vast that everything that can happen, happens. No matter how strange it is, how absurd, it happens somewhere in the multiverse (as long as whatever localized constants a certain universe is shaped from are respected). And not only that it happens, it will happen again and again, forever. The Big Bang which we currently believe is at the origin of this universe is almost surely a very common event in the multiverse: a local reorganization of matter which occurs quite frequently (on the scale of the multiverse) and perpetually.
Our dreams are really not dreams at all, but a fascinating combination of things that are actually happening. Since time does not exist in the multiverse, when we dream, we can perceive universes displaced by billions of years (as time would indicate internally in their instances). Given just how exotic some dreams can be, it is probable that the quantum entanglement effects happening inside the brain connect it to more universes at once, each with its own laws and at completely different stages of evolution.
When faced with such conflicting signals, our intellect is forced to construct some rather ridiculous scenes – it’s like playing more songs at once, it’s going to sound very strange. This is probably why dreams sometimes appear to violate all laws. On the other hand, it is not impossible for some universes to feature the craziest combination of laws, but it’s less likely for quantum entanglement to occur between the physical matter that makes up our body and some extremely different organism (in other words, it’s unlikely to dream that we’re something radically different).
Dreams are not only therapeutic and (most of the time) entertaining but they might also serve another very important role: that of enriching the imagination and perhaps even preparing us for the future by expanding our horizons. Even though they are based in our history and use our fantasy, dreams have their way of creating new experience and pushing the limits of our imagination.
The quantum super-system also makes sense when taking lucid dreaming into consideration. This kind of dream is one where free will is partially involved: we gain the ability to point the direction in which we wish our awareness to travel through the multiverse while in the same time our intellect completes the work by constructing the rest of the dream-reality. Even more, in some cases we might actually connect with another life.
It’s important to note that there are ways to shut-off free will in a conscious state. Meditation is one of them, and it brings with it an increased awareness of the multiverse similar to that gained when dreaming, although the two processes are quite different (and therefore the effects are different as well, dreams often focus on two or three senses while meditation can lead to experiences involving the whole sensory apparatus).
Here’s a definition of life: we get thrown into a system with a given set of rules and an initial state and we can perform various actions in the limited time that we have available. Taking into consideration the ocean analogy, we can see the entirety of life as a well-defined path through the multiverse, during which a consciousness inhabits a very large yet finite number of universes.
In my first article, I raised an interesting issue with this hypothesis. Let’s assume that you’re having an argument with one of your friends. She disagrees with you but chooses not to voice her opinion. However, in another universe, she does. Starting from that decision, two versions of her consciousness emerge, two separate lives. The same happens with your awareness too, since she is still having the conversation with you in both universes: so there has to be one version of your life for each of her actions.
The conclusion is that in the vast majority of cases, a dizzying number of consciousnesses might inhabit, one after the other, the bodies of other beings we meet. I’m using the term “beings” here since humans might not be the only possessors of free will.
This does not mean that the friend you’ve been arguing with is suddenly “dead” and a different being takes its place; after all, the body is not irrelevant: it is the shared (universe-localized) resource in the quantum super-system (like hardware that hosts a certain software state). This means that all the consciousnesses which happen to travel through the multiverse and use that body (in the finite number of universes in which the body exists) are part of a sort of “family of consciousnesses”. The body is the nexus of a probability cloud of consciousnesses, each living its own life.
This is how we can visualize that probability cloud: at the center, the body starts to exist, then, free will expresses itself and a very large yet finite number of deterministic universes are available for every action possible for that body up to the moment when the body ceases to exist, which is at the edge of the probability cloud. The fact that this is similar to wave-like behaviors noticed during the double slit experiment is probably not at all coincidental.
What if you and another being consistently make decisions which keep you in the same universes, at the same time? That is what I will call “synchronized consciousnesses”, although they don’t always have to be in sync. Sometimes they might go onto separate paths, only to reunite at a later moment in time, or to join with a different family-member of that consciousness.
It also stands to reason that a special kind of bond appears between beings which follow the same path through the multiverse. There is a term in our culture which fits very well with this kind of connection: “soul-mates”. The word “soul” is vague and doesn’t go well with measurable science, but then again, we have to go beyond measurable science if we are to probe for new theories.
The obvious chemistry between beings which experience the effects of having a synchronized awareness may be due to quantum entanglement, which “tunes” these beings in with each other. Of course, synchronized consciousnesses are not necessarily lovers and they don’t even have to belong to the same species.
The Game Hypothesis
We may be inspired by our reality when we build our computer games, but then again, who is to say that this, right now, isn’t a game? Maybe we’ve been given a miraculous puzzle to solve, where the organization of matter in the universe and our genetic heritage are the starting conditions. Then, through every one of our actions, we draw our unique path through the multiverse, which becomes our life (one of the many lives our awareness can go through, each sharing the same body but having taken different routes, by means of free will).
If we think of all this as a quantum “software” game, we could imagine various ways in which that software might be optimized. For example, it is possible that some of the beings we meet aren’t even real. They could be projections acting like non-playing characters in role playing games. Maybe those that we perceive as soul-mates are the only real “players” in this game of life.
Perhaps this is a sort of optimization in the software of the quantum super-system. Of course, the word “software” is used here only to express the general idea; as I said in my previous article, the complexity of the super-system exceeds our capability of understanding, although it is not out of the reach of our imagination.
How about when often, all sorts of incredible coincidences happen in life, almost like it rearranges itself so that we can meet the perfect people at the perfect time (the opposite is also true). Could this again be some sort of “software” trying to spice-up things by reorganizing the paths through which our awareness travels?
Then again, it’s even more likely that due to some sort of communication between consciousnesses at the level of the multiverse, beings can decide when and where to meet. This would be made possible by a subconscious process of choosing a path through the multiverse which later results in an encounter in a certain universe. This is not incompatible with the game hypothesis, it just removes the role of a “software game master”.
Since everything that can happen, happens, our awareness could experience an endless amount of different existences. This is similar to reincarnation, except it involves not only beings of this Earth but countless other worlds and universes with completely different laws. This perpetual adventure features existences which we cannot even imagine, existences which would make a life as a galaxy seem like a banality.
If this is the case, what if there is a universe which holds our own personal version of what Paradise is? This notion is different not only from one culture to the other, but from one being to the other. Here, we can see the multiverse in its all-encompassing splendor: it holds all sorts of Edens and Hells, they’re not fantasies anymore, they’re real places where we can get to. There might even be a universe where a being of extraordinary power resides (yes, a god).
Obviously, the question is “why can’t we get there at will?”. For that matter, why can’t we just switch to a universe where we can have all of our wishes come true? The answer is sublimely simple: we don’t really want that. We’re here because we want an adventure, and there’s nobody better suited to explain this than the famed English philosopher, Alan Watts^.
There is, however, a moment when we will decouple from this sequence of universes and that moment is, of course, death. Death is the event (the fact that some cultures see it as a tragedy is unfortunate) when our consciousness becomes unhooked from this localized hardware resource called “body”. At that moment, consciousness will either undergo a radical transformation or disappear altogether (depends on who you ask).
My personal opinion is that once the body dies, our “tour” here is over, and we are free to choose whatever other universe in the multiverse we wish to be in (including some Paradise or Hell, depending on what we believe we deserve), or even embark onto another puzzle-solving existence. This has the interesting implication that perhaps even people we consider evil could go to their Paradises if they truly believe they should be there.
Another implication is that this life should be a journey of learning and preparation for the moment of death, because even though it should not be tragic, it has the potential to quite traumatic for our consciousness.
I theorize that at the moment of death we will first become aware of the other consciousnesses which shared the same body, our “family of consciousnesses” (the probability cloud of the body), and afterwards we will realize that this is in turn part of a larger family (the human species) and so on, extending outwards from one probability cloud to the one that hosts it, until eventually finding that all of this is part of one single huge awareness which contains everything possible. This singularity is the quantum super-system and the life that we live is one “atom” from its Big Bang.
It is here where the quantum super-system hypothesis finds its (temporary) conclusion: with the thought that we are all part of the same energy vibration; we are all one, but we become different and diverse when we bind ourselves to all sorts of existences in all sorts of places. The quantum super-system is an explosion of probabilities and its effects are visible down to the smallest particle like the ones observed in the double slit experiment.
Ultimately, this is still a hypothesis, and I remain an agnostic: I am fully prepared for some experiment to prove me wrong tomorrow and I’ll gladly embrace the new information. But given all that I’ve learned in the years of my life, this is the hypothesis with which I currently choose explain existence, the universe I’m in and the reasons for which it behaves the way it does.
With the hope that this was an enjoyable read, I encourage you to learn, challenge, and grow. Expose yourself to the wildest ideas and don’t be afraid to emit your own exotic hypotheses. This is how humanity progresses, and it’s a wonder to behold.