Quantum Physics & Holistic Science
Explore the metaphysical questions raised by quantum physics and the ‘nothing’ our theory of everything forgets, investigating how in redrawing the balance of darkness and light, emptiness and realisation, zero and one, a dynamic challenge is painted of who we are, combining science and spirit.
Part of the 5 Part Series#
8th October: Dreaming the Land & Native Spirituality, with Mac Macartney & Sharon Blackie
22nd October: Sound & Sacred Geometry, with Jill Purce & Angela Voss
5th November: Secrets of the Forests: Lives Within & Beyond the Trees, with Alan Rayner, Kay Haw & Martin Bidartondo
19th November: Quantum Physics & Holistic Science, with Hardin Tibbs & Philip Franses
3rd December: Consciousness: Re-Defining Our Parameters, with Rupert Sheldrake & David Luke
Part of Advaya Initiative’s ‘the re-enchantment series: Unlocking Magic & Inspiring Action’#
We’ve fallen out of love with the world. It’s clear from the way we treat it.
Every other Monday in central London from 8 October to 3 December 2018 we will be re-igniting curiosity as we explore aspects of daily life including consciousness, quantum physics, trees, holistic science, native spirituality, sacred geometry, storytelling and sound.
Mass mental illness and climate change are not inevitable. They are the result of certain narratives, behaviours and habits. Let’s shift perspectives, empower ourselves for change and co-create a future we want to be a part of.
With special thanks to Sharon Blackie and her 2018 publication The Enchanted Life: Unlocking the Magic of the Everyday.
“To live an enchanted life is to pick up the pieces of our bruised and battered psyches, and to offer them the nourishment they long for. It is to be challenged, to be awakened, to be gripped and shaken to the core by the extraordinary which lies at the heart of the ordinary. Above all, to live an enchanted life is to fall in love with the world all over again.”
— SHARON BLACKIE
Quantum Weirdness and Metaphysical Horizons#
Quantum physics is fascinating not simply for the theory itself, but also for the metaphysical questions it raises. Many working physicists are surprisingly uninterested in these questions because to them it is just a practical theory and, as they put it, they “know how to turn the mathematical handle” to obtain highly accurate results. But the metaphysical questions are of great interest to many of the rest of us, since they imply a significant shift away from the worldview promoted by classical physics, which after three hundred years forms our dominant understanding of reality. Many physicists believe that science makes no metaphysical assumptions, and argue that quantum theory does not justify opening up such questions. Yet the whole edifice of physics rests on presumed answers to underlying metaphysical questions which lie beyond the reach of science itself. Far from being unjustified, quantum theory seems to be pushing us to rethink these underlying assumptions simply to make sense of the paradoxical picture it is painting of reality. This presentation will look at the specific ways in which physical theory has gone beyond its own starting assumptions and will ask whether this is pointing to a new metaphysical worldview which could re-enchant our culture.
The ‘Nothing’ our Theory of Everything Forgets#
The zero was developed in the East several thousand years ago, in a mathematics that understood emptiness and realisation as the foundation of existence. Ancient Greece in contrast was founded on a notion of the one. The zero was never understood in the West as a foundation to mathematics. Only in the 16th century did zero and the decimal system enter into Western thought giving an abstract perspective to existence. In the 17th century, Newton understood the colours as relating statically to light, without including the influence of the darkness. The physics Newton founded discarded the importance of darkness from the experience of light.
Goethe (1749-1832) is well known as a playwright exploring the darkness of the human soul through his play Faust. Goethe looked into science for the dynamic interaction, where darkness develops into light and light is limited by darkness. In acknowledging the influence of darkness, Goethe showed new aspects of colour with complementary effects (of darkness journeying into light) to those Newton had presented (of seeing light limited by darkness).
Goethe illustrated the play of darkness and light in the way we are moved by anItalian Master’s painting to live the raw emotion of death and life presented through it. Action is framed within the shades of emptiness and the bright calling to realisation. Zero and one is the ladder which existence visibly descends and ascends. In redrawing the balance of darkness and light, emptiness and realisation, zero and one, a dynamic challenge is painted of who we are, combining science and spirit.
Hardin Tibbs #
Hardin Tibbs is a strategic analyst, futures thinker, adviser and innovator with long experience of future-focused strategic thinking. His work is focused on interpreting complex emerging situations and generating strategic insight. His consulting clients include major companies, government agencies, and non-profit organizations in the United States, Europe, Australia and South-East Asia. Hardin is a skilled strategic analyst and strategy process facilitator.
Philip Franses #
Philip Franses is a Senior Lecturer of Holistic Science at Schumacher College. Philip studied mathematics at New College Oxford from 1976 to 1980, yet academia’s dull explanation of the world inspired Philip on a counter-journey into the depths of experience, travelling and a re-sensitisation to quality.