Physics shows the way to Mind/Body separation - and much more

You may need to read parts of this article several times.

In 2013 at a research institute in Grenoble, France, a team of scientists observed atomic particles do something that left them stunned. In their words, “If we could do this with a human, the body would take one path, its personality another.” The mind would have separated from the body.

Scientists working in the area of physics called quantum mechanics, take weirdness as part of daily life. The great quantum physicist John Wheeler once said that if a week went by without discovering anything weird, it had been a bad week. However, what happened in Grenoble troubled even the most hardened of quantum specialists.

Something once viewed as just a quirk in the hugely complicated mathematical equations of quantum physics -and perhaps not to be taken too literally - had been proven true. Proof once again that if you take your eye off the maths, it’ll jump out and bite you. However, when something is so unbelievable as to be virtually paranormal, humans become inhibited; their incredulity and fear of the unknown takes over.

What the researchers did was to direct a stream of neutrinos flowing from a nuclear reactor through a beam splitter. The technique resulted in the separation of every particle’s mass from its spin. A particle’s spin defines its characteristics and governs how it behaves. If they could do it with a human then the mind would separate from the body. Remarkably, in the same experiment, the two separate entities of mass and spin were later reunited and returned once again to become a complete quantum entity, which is exactly what happens during an out-of-body experience?

Though totally bizarre and contrary to everything common sense tells us, it revealed something else. It showed that events taking place now have an effect on events in the past. The idea takes a lot of getting used to and requires a huge leap in our perception of reality. There is of course another aspect to this, which is even more bizarre: A future we have yet to arrive at is forming and influencing our current reality.

These results have far-reaching implications and pose huge questions that no one seems to want to answer. “The question has become the elephant in the room,” says Aephraim Steinberg of the University of Toronto, Canada.  “What are the results trying to tell us about the true reality of the world we live in?”

References and people:

 The experiment was carried out at the Institut Laue-Langevin in Grenoble, France by an international team lead by Yuji Hasegawa.

 Back in 1964 Yakir Aharonov, Peter Bergmann and Joel Lebowitz formed a theory that defies common sense: The state of a quantum system can be affected by events either in the past or in the future.

 Jeff Tollaksen is of Chapman University in Orange, California and it was he, together with his research director, Yakir Aharonov, who first proposed the above experiment.

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