Nothing in this blog can be believed. If you think that anything in this blog is true or factual, you'll need to verify it from another source. Do you understand? No? Then read it again, and repeat this process, until you understand that you cannot sue me for anything you read here. Also, having been sucked into taking part in the mass-murder of more than 3 million Vietnamese people on behalf of U.S. Big Business "interests", I'm as mad as a cut snake (and broke) so it might be a bit silly to try to sue me anyway...

Friday, March 15, 2013

Is the Universe a Hologram?

The concept of the universe being a holographic projection makes a lot of sense to me.  It neatly supplements both Buddhist thought and quantum theory.

Confused?   

Read this article for openers >>>

Interested in reading more?  Well, a neat book on the subject is The Holographic Universe by Michael Talbot.  I found it very thought provoking. 

Here's a review of the book by Damian Nash (from the Amazon.com website):
This is one of the most provocative books I have read in years. In the first few chapters Mr. Talbot describes the emerging holographic paradigm in science, drawing on David Bohm's work in quantum physics and Karl Pribam's work in neuroscience. I found both descriptions to be fascinating, and especially enjoyed the historical context for the work of these two seminal thinkers. As a person with a master's degree in neuroscience and chaos/complexity theory, I found a couple of his simplifications misleading, but would give him high marks for his overall comprehension of the conclusions of Pribam and his followers.
The remaining 2/3 of the book is a discussion of how the holographic paradigm may provide a rational basis for interpreting a wide variety of phenomenon located around the fringes of established science. He looks at everything from strange historical "miracles" like stigmata and appearances of the Virgin Mary to modern psychic abilities and LSD experiences, from out-of-body and near-death-experiences to UFO abductions. In addition, he compares language used in the modern scientific discussion of holography with the language used by ancient mystical traditions.

Mr. Talbot's writing style is unusually clear and lucid. All of this makes for a highly engaging book. It kept me up late every night for more than a week. I am a person who has had an OBE/NDE (out-of-body, near-death-experience), and can tell you that his description of such events is an astoundingly accurate portrayal of what I experienced.

I am also a scientist, and know that most of my highly rational, empirical colleages would have trouble accepting a majority of Mr. Talbot's conclusions. This work addresses something so completely out of the realm of everyday experience for most people, and probes a world that is normally invisible to the five senses. Hence, objective, empirical science -- as defined by a conventional theorist or practicing technician -- simply cannot address these experiences. They are outside the range of focus of the tool that Western minds currently rely on.

The service that Mr. Talbot provides is a challenge to rethink the conventional definition of science so that it can take into account a much wider range of human experience. What he argues for is the acceptance, as valid scientific data, of the experiences of individual humans, across cultures and throughout history, that are remarkably consistent with one another. These experiences address aspects of reality that are invisible to the skeptical eye, but become obvious to the person who chooses to develop other forms of perception.

As a person who was unwittingly thrown into an OBE/NDE experience, I am naturally inclined to read a book like this one with an open mind, and felt immensely rewarded for doing so. However, if I had reviewed the same book before having my own personal experience of some of the phenomena it describes, I would have reviewed it as a new-age excursion into a realm of fantasy. I am completely sympathetic to some of the reviewers who see it that way, and respectfully disagree.

I believe there is an extraordinary synthesis happening among the realms of human experience, one that can validate each individual's story, however unusual, and also one that honors all the different ways of knowing. I see Mr. Talbot's work as one of the more important bridges yet constructed between traditional science and spirituality, between rational discourse about repeatable, empirically verifiable phenomenon and the quirky, esoteric or mythological elements of personal experience that actually define most people's experience of reality. This book is a "must read" for any passionate seeker of truth. 

9 Comments:

Blogger AndrewM said...

I suspect it's fruitloopery but I'll reserve judgement until I've read it. There are two editions of the book available from Fishpond: the original 1996 edition ($13), and a revised 2011 edition that adds an introduction by Lynn McTaggart ($15). McTaggart is a loon with seriously weird and unscientific views, so paying an extra $2 for what is otherwise the same book with just her nuttery added is plain bad purchasing; I bought the original. Note that Fishpond offers free shipping.

Note also that some of the sites that claim to offer a free PDF version of the book actually don't have it, while others caused my anti-malware software to get very alarmed. I found that the book isn't in the public domain, and if you want it you should buy it. And, really, for $13 delivered to your letterbox, it's not exactly expensive, is it? Amazon has it for $11.60 but add something like $8 shipping and it's more expensive.

March 16, 2013 10:26 AM  
Blogger Gerry said...

Well, Andrew, with your penchant for dismissing those who write stuff you don't agree with as "loons", I doubt you'll be satisfied with Talbot's book either. Sorry.

Seems that perhaps I should have included the caveat "This book may not appleal to those who don't like to read stuff they have trouble agreeing with."

Echoes of an earlier post.

March 17, 2013 8:38 AM  
Blogger AndrewM said...

Settle, Gerry, settle, I haven't started dissing the book yet. In fact, you'll have to wait several weeks for that happy event, because the downside of buying from Fishpond is that delivery can be, and often is, slower than Amazon. Then I've got to read it, digest it, marshal counter arguments and THEN start dissing it (assuming I disagree with it, which I might not).

And if you can happily hold yourself out to be an agnostic while signing up to Lynn McTaggart's twaddle about altering the Universe simply by thinking about it, you're not only being hypocritical, you're gullible. :-)

March 17, 2013 9:08 AM  
Blogger Gerry said...

Settle? Me? Hmph! :-)

Oh, you'll find plenty to diss in Talbot's book, Andrew. :-)

As an agnostic I do not sign up to anyone's twaddle. Even the latest quantum theory twaddle. :-)

But if you can get your brain around that part of quantum theory which suggests that consciousness impacts "reality", you might just be able to understand the ideas that Talbot and (I assume) McTaggart are playing with.

I've bought a few books from Fishpond. They're cheap, and I'm patient. :-)

March 17, 2013 10:42 AM  
Blogger Vest said...

Being a member of the flat earth society like those two nutters, there is also the possibility that "once upon a time" there was an explosion in an ancient Solar Light factory and trillions of various sized fragments were sent flying skywards to float in space for ever, fuelled by the sun these fragmented lights are only seen at night when clouds are absent, some nutters call them stars.

March 19, 2013 11:03 PM  
Blogger AndrewM said...

Fishpond advise earliest delivery for book is 1 April. Certainly seems appropriate, but given it's a public holiday, perhaps not. :-)

March 29, 2013 8:52 AM  
Blogger Gerry said...

I can't understand why you ordered it. You'll probably enjoy the first third of the book, but then you'll probably go nuts when it enters the realm of the supernatural and ruminates about how the holographic universe theory supports "more things in heaven and earth, Andrew, than are dreamt of in your philosophy." :-)


March 29, 2013 10:02 AM  
Blogger Davoh said...

One of the problems 'thinking' human beings have is the concept of "boundaries". i.e. it has to start somewhere, has to have a 'fence' around it somewhere.

Allowing the mind to contemplate 'eternity' or 'infinity' is sort of scary.

And no - methinks the universe is not a 'hologram'. Mainly because a 'hologram' has to be 'sent' from somewhere .. which brings us back to the concept of an elsewhere "god" of some sort.

April 15, 2013 8:46 PM  
Blogger Gerry said...

Not "sent" Davo, "projected". And what say you about the idea the the "projector" is the "collective consciousness" i.e. all of us, collectively?

December 08, 2015 10:54 AM  

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