As promised, from Victor Stenger’s Quantum Gods (Prometheus 2009).
First, from the Foreword by Michael Shermer. On a book tour in the spring of 2004 he met the producers of the documentary (although I would call it a “documentary”) What the Bleep Do We Know?
What the Bleep Do We Know? went on to become one of the highest grossing documentary films of all time…The explanation is to be found in the fact that the film is not really about quantum physics. The documentary’s central motif is that we create our own reality through will, thought, and consciousness, which, according to the “experts” who appear as talking heads throughout the film (most of whom are not scientists, let alone quantum physicists), depends on quantum mechanics, that branch of physics so befuddling even to those who do it for a living that it can be invoked whenever something supernatural or paranormal is desired. [p 7]
He quotes University of Oregon physicist (ret’d) Amit Goswamy saying the material world is nothing but movements of consciousness and that he chooses moment by moment his experiences.
I publicly challenged Dr Goswami to leap out of a twenty-story building and consciously choose the experience of passing safely through the ground’s tendencies. [p 8]
He cites Deepak Chopra and J.Z. Knight, Roger Penrose and Stuart Hameroff. He asks Victor Stenger if the Penrose-Hameroff conjecture (about microtubules and stuff) has any merit.
Stenger explained to me that the gap between sub-atomic quantum effects and large-scale macrosystems is too large to bridge. [p 9]
In other words, no.
Stenger explains in the preface what “quantum spirituality” is.
The primary theme of the quantum spirituality movement is that “we make our own reality.” This principle is the subject of many book in which the authors grandly claim a new “paradigm” in our understanding of the nature of reality, with the human mind somehow tuned into a “cosmic consciousness” that pervades the universe. [pp 14-5]
Ok, now I get it. When I say that I too think I’m part of something much bigger than my own self, and cite the species, and animals, and living organisms, and the cosmos, and history, I’m not talking about what quantum spirituality people are talking about when they say they are part of something bigger than their own selves. They’re talking about something else; they’re talking about being somehow tuned into a “cosmic consciousness” that pervades the universe.
Yes. I don’t think we make our own reality, and I don’t think I’m somehow tuned into a cosmic consciousness that pervades the universe.