Subject: Re: "Consciousness and Quantum Physics"
Date: Mon, 28 Feb 2005 17:01:04 +0200
From: Dimi Chakalov <>
To: Dick J Bierman <>

Dear Dick,

> I am confused. It escapes me what this has to do with my
> empirical work on Consciousness and Quantum Physics.

It is supposed to be a detailed (if you choose to follow the links) explanation of my hypothesis of 'global mode of spacetime' and my catchword (see below). Hence we have three (not two) major theoretical perspectives on the relation between Quantum Physics and Consciousness.

To be specific, you wrote: "Of course we don't perceive the world as composed of superpositioned states." I believe we do perceive the world as composed of superpositioned states, only this kind of perception is UNspeakable, and its physical basis might be the putative global mode of spacetime. If we deny the existence of the latter, see again the mess at

Do you see the implications for your empirical work on Consciousness and Quantum Physics?


Dead matter makes quantum jumps; the living-and-quantum matter is smarter.

Note: To explain the absence of any "collapse" of the wave function, consider a simple case of mental rotation. Imagine a cube made of some white plastic material, with 3 cm rib, painted blue, which you cut into 27 little cubes, 1 cm each, and ask yourself the question: how many little cubes have 3 painted sides, 2, 1, and zero? After you've "rotated" the cube and counted the sides, may I ask the following questions: Did you "collapse" the poor cube, and did your subjective self change at all? All this refers to brain states. We don't tolerate any ghosts, psi-fields, witches, bio-energo-quantum fields, vampires, psychons, whatever.

Dead matter makes quantum jumps; the living-and-quantum matter is smarter. Smarter -- because it lives in the so-called global mode of spacetime. To explain the latter, let's go back to quantum physics.

Karl Svozil posted yesterday the fifth version of his "Simultaneous Bell measurements", quant-ph/0206076 v5 [Ref. 1], but he fail short of posing the question of the nature of quantum reality. Surely the notion of 'classical realism' does not tally to the quantum realm, as noticed by Schrödinger in 1935. I had the chance to talk with Karl Svozil five years ago, and my impression was that he understood the argument for the UNspeakable quantum state [Ref. 2] and its global mode of spacetime.

Where do these nonunique four-partite states [Ref. 1] come from? If not actualized, where do they go? If actualized by measurement, how do they enter Minkowski spacetime? Only through the apex of the cone, right? That's the only possible link of the time parameter read by an inanimate clock and the global mode of spacetime.

Any other suggestions?

There is, actually, a very intriguing idea of Itamar Pitowsky and Meir Hemmo that the uncollapsed quantum state "might be written in a genuine relativistic form" [Ref. 3]. It will be extremely interesting to see it in black and white.

Watch this space!

D. Chakalov
March 1, 2005
Last update: March 3, 2005
So one of my missions in life is to get people to see that if they want to talk about the problems of quantum mechanics -- the real problems of quantum mechanics -- they must be talking about Lorentz invariance.

John S. Bell

[Ref. 1] K. Svozil, Simultaneous Bell measurements, quant-ph/0206076 v5, February 28, 2005.

"(T)he EPR argument is based on the unambiguous existence of (counterfactual) "elements of physical reality."

"Theoretically, this means that we have to find four-partite states with the uniqueness property [9] such that knowledge of a property of one particle entails the certainty that, if this property were measured on the other three particles as well, the outcome of the measurement would be a unique function of the outcome of the measurement actually performed. More than that, such a uniqueness property must hold for all the observables associated with the four measurement directions a, a_1, b, and b_1, respectively. No such state has ever been proposed.

"Both of these four-partite states are nonunique in all directions, for detection of, say, state "-" on the first particle leaves open the possibility to find the third and fourth particles either in states "+" or in "-" for |Psi_2,4,s1>. Likewise, the proposition

‘The first particle has spin state "-".’

does not fix a single term of |Psi_2,4,s2> in Eq. (2), but rather leaves open empirical verifications or falsifications of either one of the two possibilities

‘The second (third, fourth) particle has spin state "-".’

‘The second (third, fourth) particle has spin state "+".’

at random.

"This ambivalence gets worse as the number of particles increases.

"As far as the uniqueness property is concerned, it is straightforward to 
deduce nonuniqueness for singlet states of three or more particles. An 
indirect argument, based on Bell- and Kochen-Specker-type theorems, proves the nonexistence of general states with the uniqueness property."

[Ref. 2] Max Tegmark, John Archibald Wheeler, 100 Years of the Quantum, quant-ph/0101077 v1.

"Our quantum card in Figure 1 would really be in two places at once. Moreover, a person looking at the card would enter a superposition of two different mental states, each perceiving one of the two outcomes! If you had bet money on the queen coming face up, you would end up in a superposition of smiling and frowning.
"Everybody knows that something is missing here, since we lack a consistent theory unifying gravity with quantum mechanics."

[Ref. 3] Meir Hemmo, Itamar Pitowsky, Probability and Nonlocality in Many Minds Interpretations of Quantum Mechanics, British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 54, 225-243 (2003); quant-ph/0112077 v3

"Finally, since the weak form of these nonlocal correlations is a feature
of the uncollapsed quantum state, such as (10), the evolution of the minds need not exhibit, not even in principle, a dependence on a reference frame. In this sense a theory with such correlations might be written in a genuine relativistic form. But this is another issue."



Subject: The concept of a conscious observation
Date: Fri, 19 Dec 2003 16:58:20 +0200
From: Dimi Chakalov <>
To: Dick Bierman <>
CC: H. Spekreijse <>,V.A.F Lamme <>, Jacob Jolij <>,Gundel Jaeger <>,Bjoern Naundorf <>,Rufin VanRullen <>,Christof Koch <>,Rodolfo R Llinás <>,Giulio Tononi <>,

Dear Dick,

I read with great interest your recent article "Does Consciousness Collapse the Wave Function", physics/0312115 [Ref. 1]. You wrote: "So far the concept of a conscious observation has not been worked out in detail."

Perhaps you may wish to see

Regarding the work by your colleagues [Refs. 2 and 3], please see Ulric Neisser's cognitive cycle,

Bottom line is the cognitive binding in the brain,

In case you're interested in QM and the measurement (macro-objectification) problem, see

I'm sure you know what I can say about your recent work [Ref. 1],

We've been in email contact for many years.

My proposal can be downloaded at

I will be happy to learn your critical opinion. Comments and suggestions from your colleagues are welcome too.


Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae.  The rset can be a total mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe,

Pritie amzanig huh?


[Ref. 1] Dick Bierman, Does Consciousness Collapse the Wave Function, physics/0312115, Thu, 18 Dec 2003 20:59:06 GMT,
Journal-ref: Mind and Matter, Vol. 1, 45-57 (2003)

"According to the radical proposition under consideration, a reduction of this superposition occurs only when an observer ‘looks’ at one of the two indicators of the emission. Either observation of the visual or the audio representation would collapse the wave packet.

"Before drawing far reaching conclusions we should first check if there are no more mundane explanations for the current findings.

"Although this figure satisfies the criterion of 5% which is generally accepted as the significance criterion, it is not enough to unequivocally accept the hypothesis that consciousness collapses the state vector. Strong claims need strong evidence.

"So far the concept of a conscious observation has not been worked out in detail. In Libet's work, which we used to estimate the delay between perceptual input and the conscious experience thereof, the conscious observation is by definition an observation which is stored in memory. However there is suggestive evidence, for instance from 'change blindness' experiments, that there is another form of 'faster' conscious experience directly related to perceptual input (Landman et al, 2003). This experience is not stored in memory. In further work it might be necessary to discriminate between these and possibly other forms of conscious experience."

[Ref. 2] Victor A.F. Lamme, Why visual attention and awareness are different, Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 7(1), 12 (2003), Fig. 5.

"Either way, feedforward activation (green dots), both of selected (i.e. attended) and non-selected inputs, is unconscious, even though it might trigger or modify behavior."

[Ref. 3] Rufin VanRullen and Christof Koch, Is perception discrete or continuous? Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 7(5), 207-213 (2003).

"All these studies point to a fundamental aspect of brain activity: the importance of ongoing (or so-called ‘spontaneous’) activity for neuronal processing. Once ongoing activity is taken into account, the apparent variability of neuronal response, classically attributed to high neuronal noise, is greatly reduced. Thus, if not only evoked neuronal firing is considered, but also ongoing, potentially subthreshold
activities, as well as the interactions between the two, the brain processes underlying perception might finally lie within our grasp."

"It seems surprising that such a fundamental question as whether conscious perception occurs in discrete batches or continuously has not been definitely answered one way or another."