A few weeks ago my guru passed along a video entitled, “What the BLEEP Do We Know” / “Down the Rabbit Hole” which explores the so-called Double-slit experiments. In these experiments, it was found that single photons were able to travel through 2 separate slits simultaneously – thus violating all manner of physical laws (how the heck can an object be in two places at the same time?). Furthermore, it was found that whenever the experimenters (reviewed here) were able to observe, detect, or deduce, which slit a photon travelled through, the typical “dual slit” interference pattern (shown here) instantly disappeared.
Strangely, it seems that interference patterns seem to appear only when a photon’s path is unknown. Even weirder is that when 2 photons are sent to separate detectors, they seem to “know” whether one-another will generate a specific interference pattern. This so-called phenomena of “quantum entanglement” and other such examples of spooky action-at-a-distance where 2 separate “widely separated objects share the same existence” have spawned all manner of new-agey and spiritual endeavors to link these quantum-level phenomena with human spirituality. Here’s just one example.
A recently published research article entitled, “How much free will is needed to demonstrate nonlocality?” explores the relationship between quantum entanglement and human thought. According to Technology Review,
“if an experimenter lacks even a single bit of free will then quantum mechanics can be explained in terms of hidden variables. Conversely, if we accept the veracity of quantum mechanics, then we are able to place a bound on the nature of free will.”
Bounds on free will? Apparently so – if you follow the quantum physics. Is this a way to think about, or perhaps scientifically validate, the notion of karma? Perhaps only in a general way – that our thoughts and actions are somehow bounded by the consequences of our choices and experiences as well as the choices and experiences of others in the present and past.
I’m not free, but happily inter-connected.