Thursday, December 7, 2023

Consciousness as creator

Universe as the result of consciousness:
Creation and the Cosmological Constants.

I have just finished reading On the Origin of Time by Thomas Hertog (published April 11 2023 by Bantam), and this blog entry is my reflection on the new, in my mind groundbreaking, ideas on the origin of the universe that Thomas presents.

When scientists speak of the fine-tuning of the universe, they are generally referring to the extraordinary balancing of the fundamental laws and parameters of physics that have led to a universe with the exactly right conditions for sustaining life. The mathematical probability for these constants all having their optimal values is very close to zero. In his article titled “God, Design, and Fine-Tuning”, physicist Robin Collins gave the following illustration to help explain these constants:

"I like to use the analogy of astronauts landing on Mars and finding an enclosed biosphere, sort of like the domed structure that was built in Arizona a few years ago. At the control panel they find that all the dials for its environment are set just right for life. The oxygen ratio is perfect; the temperature is seventy degrees; the humidity is fifty percent; there is a system for replenishing the air; there are systems for producing food, generating energy, and disposing of wastes. Each dial has a huge range of possible settings, and you can see if you were to adjust one or more of them just a little bit, the environment would go out of whack and life would be impossible. What conclusion would we draw from finding this structure? Would we draw the conclusion that it just happened to form by chance? Certainly not. Instead, we would unanimously conclude that it was designed by some intelligent being. Why would we draw this conclusion? Because an intelligent designer appears to be the only plausible explanation for the existence of the structure."

According to recent findings in physics, the universe is analogous to this "biosphere" that Collins illustrates. Since the 1960’s, scientists have discovered that just about everything about the basic structure of the universe is balanced on a razors edge for life to exist. The coincidences are far too fantastic to attribute this to mere chance or to claim that it needs no explanation. The “dials” are too precisely set for this to be so just by chance. Somebody, as Fred Hoyle quipped, "has been monkeying with the physics."

Following thought-provoking examples can be mentioned:

1.   If the initial explosion of the big bang had differed in strength by as little as1 part in 1060, the universe would have either quickly collapsed back on itself, or expanded too rapidly for stars to form. In either case, life would be impossible. (An accuracy of one part in 1060 can be compared to firing a bullet at a one-inch target on the other side of the observable universe, twenty billion light years away, and hitting the target.)

2.   Calculations indicate that if the strong nuclear force, the force that binds protons and neutrons together in an atom, had been stronger or weaker by as little as 5% life would be impossible.

3.   Calculations show that if gravity had been stronger or weaker by 1 part in 1040, then life-sustaining stars like the sun could not exist. This would most likely make life impossible.

4.   If the neutron’s mass had not been about 1.001 times the mass of the proton, all protons would have decayed into neutrons or all neutrons would have decayed into protons, and thus life would not be possible.

5.   In the formation of the universe, the balance of matter to antimatter had to be accurate to one part in ten billion for the universe to arise.

6.   Many of the laws of physics can be described as a function of the velocity of light, c. Even a slight variation in the speed of light would alter these other constants and preclude the possibility of life on earth.

7.   For the universe to exist as it is, requires that hydrogen can be converted to helium in a precise way that converts seven one thousandths of its mass to energy. Lower that value very slightly from 0.007 percent to 0.006 percent, say, and no transformation could take place: the universe would consist of hydrogen and nothing else. Raise the value very slightly to 0.008 percent, hydrogen would long since have been exhausted. In either case, with the slightest tweaking of these numbers the universe as we know and need it to be would not be here.

8.   The dominant theory of quantum mechanics about the internal structure of the quarks (the building elements of all elementary particles) – the “string theory” – describes how 9-dimensional energy strings vibrate in different ways. There are 10 500 different ways for the six “hidden” dimensions to “roll up”, but only a few of these that lead to the formation of matter and energy of a kind that can initiate life.

Believing that this astronomic fine-tuning implies “Intelligent Design” of the universe by some higher power, is to adhere to what is called The Strong Anthropic Principle.

An alternative to the Strong Anthropic Principle is the Weak Anthropic Principle, which proposes that a infinite number of separated universes are continually created out of energy quantum fluctuations in “primeval space-time”, and that now and then one of these happens to get “the right” combination of all the pertinent cosmological constants in order to lead to an universe harboring life, that eventually is able to observe it. A mathematical consequence of the Weak Anthropic Principle is the so-called Multiverse, i.e. there exist an infinite number of parallel universes. We live in one of these, but as there are an infinite number of universes, there must exist exact copies of our own, moreover containing exact copies of yourself…

None of these principles will ever be possible to prove scientifically, and an interesting conclusion is that the choice between these two descriptions of reality is a question of belief and faith.

A third alternative has recently been proposed by Thomas Hertog, in his book On the Origin of Time. The book describes his thirty year long scientific colla­boration with Steven Hawking (they both are/were cosmologists and quantum physicists). Thomas calls this alternative The Evolutional Universe. In this the parameters of physics have gone through an evolution, that has similarities to the evolution of life on Earth. All presently established scientific theories and models have up to know stated that the cosmological constants acquired their fixed and final values during the first nanoseconds of the emergence of the Universe, the Big Bang. In their new model, Thomas and Steven propose that the values have been established over time, in an evolutionary quantum mechanical selection process.

An evolutionary process is characterized by the fact that it is impossible to predict mathematically, as it is the consequence of a large number of minute random changes over long periods of time, changes that in the case of the evolution of life have included the stability of the Earth’s crust, the climate, asteroid collisions and random mutations of the genetic code. Sometimes these changes have led to the evolution of new life forms, sometimes they have destroyed the necessary conditions for life. Earth has experienced five mass extinctions during its existence. (Homo Sapiens has now activated the sixth, which moreover is bigger and quicker than any of the earlier ones…) An evolutionary process can be understood only by examining it “backwards”, in the case of the evolution of life via archaeology, paleontology, DNA analysis of fossils, etc.

In the case of the evolutional genesis of the Universe, random events, like quantum mechanical fluctuations in combination with (mathematically) chaotic phase shifts in the super-hot and rapidly cooling pre-atomic plasma, will give rise to a large number of alternative quantum states that exist simultaneously in the black hole Universe was during its first explosive expansion. When one of these quantum states over time, in the case of Earth after 4,5 billion years, leads to the formation of life, and this life in different ways observes backward in time (which happens when one makes measurements on distant galaxies), this state is reinforced and the other ones fade away.

Just as when a physicist measures the position and movement of a single electron, and through different choices of observation method makes it manifest either as a particle or as a wave front, the collective consciousness of the Universe has “seen” only the combination of the values of the cosmological constants that exist in the evolutionary “life track” the consciousness abides in, and through this this track is reinforced already at its starting point, and becomes manifest.

Through actual lab experiments it has been possible to prove that this quantum mechanical influence is independent of time and space, i.e. the influence from the “observer” travels forward as well as backward in time and occurs instantaneously via “quantum entanglement” even over huge distances. (These experiments are described in Thomas’ book, with references.)

Thomas and Steven analyzed data from the Big Bang “backwards” and observed it as if they were observing the same type of data that one gets when observing a black hole (which Universe has been found to be full of), but that what they observed could be likened to “a video recording of the collapse of a star into a black hole” played up backwards. They discovered that the ground braking mathematics Steven originally had developed for analyzing and understanding black holes could be used on the data from the Big Bang. The data they used came among many sources also from the space telescope Explorer 8, which 2006 produced an image of the 13,77 year old cosmic background radiation (shown in the leftmost part of the image below).

The conclusion in the book is that the precisely adjusted, “probiotic”, combination of the values of the cosmological constants is the result of the observation done by the collective consciousness and the resulting selection of the very quantum states that allow life to evolve and to exist. Their theory is similar to the Weak Antropic Principle, but it does not necessitate a problematic philosophical hypothesis impossible to prove, like multiverse, as it is based on the established models and the mathematic tools developed within cosmology and quantum mechanics, models and tools that have a broad support from the scientific community.

It was probably difficult for Steven Hawking to accept the idea of non-time­bound and non-spacebound influence from the collective consciousness, being a convinced atheist, but he favored this conclusion before the Strong Antropic Principle, as this implies a creating God, or the Weak Antropic Principle that implies multiverse with its philosophical absurdities.

But, he didn’t have time before passing away in 2018 to arrive at the next question he should have reflected over – what is, really, the collective consciousness?


“To have chosen to express the Self in physical form was a choice consistent with the laws of love. There was no need for the Self to be separate in order for this to be so, but there was a need for the Self to have an observable form and to exist in relationship with others with observable forms. This was simply so that expressions of love could be created and observed within the realm of physicality.”

“Now your science is proving to you the relationship between the observer and the observed, the effect that one cannot help but have upon the other. Science still has a long way to go in determining, through its processes, what this says about the nature of humankind but it is closer every day to understanding the unity and interconnectedness of all things.”

(A Course of Love, A3:17.1,2)


Lars Gimstedt
Quantum Physicist and Psychosynthesis Therapist.
December 7 2023

Friday, March 10, 2023

Transforming Negative Thinking

In therapy or in coaching, many sometimes encounter the advice to learn Positive Thinking, as a tool for transforming a self-sabotaging and draining negative thinking into something that supports and empowers.

Even if the intention behind this advice is a positive one, there never the less is a risk for an uncritical focus on positive thinking not being helpful at all, but rather that it leads to ignoring problems that may have to be confronted, and / or that it leads to feelings of guilt for thinking in negative terms.

A better term is therefore "True Thinking". This choice of wording points at the fact that negative thinking sometimes can be based on erroneous interpretations of reality, or that one imagines "a hidden meaning", or projects, one's preconceptions / fears / suspicions / interpretations into what one sees and hears from others.

Learning how to just become aware of unrealistic negative thinking is therefore an important first step. What one may benefit from learning next, is how to use both one's brain and heart in order to be able to perceive reality with awareness, in a realistic way, without preconceived judgment. In order to using "True Thinking" for being able to act in a conscious way, sense-fully, maturely, instead of re-acting out of emotional conditioned reflexes.

Watch a short video about the structure of negative thinking, and about True Thinking (8 minutes):
About Negative Thinking, 8 minutes.
(Right-click here to download the video,
right-click here to download a pdf printout.)

For those with a spiritual focus, there is another variant of this video. 

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The Equation of Happiness

Happiness Research is an area that I as a psychotherapist of course have been trying to follow, as I meet many unhappy persons in my job.
Much of what has been written about this field of research I have found to be interesting, but unfortunately not very useful. The definition of the term “happiness” itself also varies a lot, and much of what I have found only really describes those things people strive for, in the belief that they will bring them happiness, but which in the long run do not – prosperity, social status, celebrity, a well-trained body, etc.
But, when I a while ago came across a blog entry from a British GP, one that I felt presented a concise and useful definition of “happiness”, I felt that I finally had found something useful. His definition was “Happiness is inversely proportional to the difference between how I think life should be and how it is.”
In the image above I have further developed this simple definition with a couple of additional factors, which I believe have an impact on our experience of being happy. The factors involved can be described in this way
  1. The first factor is “PEACE”. I believe that we all possess Inner Peace, a quiet place that can be located far down in our subconscious mind, and which for some, or for everyone at times, can be difficult to reach and have access to. But, I believe it is there, and that we can learn how to access it. Feeling Inner Peace, or peace of mind, can be seen another expression of lasting and secure happiness.

  2. The second factor is “HOW IT IS”. Strictly, this should objectively describe our external and inner reality. But, we are subjective creatures, so “How it is” is the reality we perceive, and this perception is strongly colored by our values, inner beliefs, conditioning during our upbringing, self-image, self-esteem, traumatic memories, etc.

    The more aware we can be of these inner “filters”, the more objectively we can look at our external reality and at ourselves.  And the more objective and aware one can be when looking at one’s reality, the more ways one can find for changing it to the better, which can lead to more contentment and happiness.

  3. The third factor is “HOW I THINK IT SHOULD BE”. Exaggerated and / or unrealistic expectations are conditions for feeling discontent and unhappy.

    Realistic expectations, plus being able to define clear personal goals, to plan, evaluate, to find external and inner resources, are the conditions for turning these expectations into concrete action for developing and improving one’s life (factor 1), which leads to increased happiness.

  4. The fourth factor is “GRATITUDE”. In the image there is a symbol for a pump, energized by my Inner Peace. This pump symbolizes what happens if I regularly spend time, preferably a period of time each evening, for feeling and expressing my gratitude for all those things I have in my life that I regard as valuable, as assets, as things that give my life meaning and purpose: my relationships, my work, my health, being in nature, my spiritual life, my own positive qualities and skills, etc.

    Activate this “pump” each day, and your experience of inner peace and happiness will increase.

  5. The fifth factor is “BITTERNESS”. In the image there is a symbol for a second pump, and this one is energized by my expectations. The more unrealistic these are, and the less I am able to reach them, and the more I consider others are to blame for this, the faster this pump runs. The “Bitterness” pump drains my inner peace, and decreases my happiness. If it runs too often or for too long time, the “bubble” Peace may become completely depleted…

    A while ago, I read a poignant definition of “bitterness”: “Bitterness is like drinking poison, and then hoping someone else will die.”

    Making oneself aware of one’s judgmental and bitter thoughts, and “neutralizing” them with thoughts of gratitude, is a good prescription for keeping and increasing one’s inner peace.
So, in summary: I think we most of the time have access to what we need in order to achieve a sense of happiness and contentedness.

We can by ourselves influence each one of the factors that build up or wear down our happiness:
1. Inner peace, 2. Our own life, 3. Our expectations and goals, 4. Gratitude

and 5. Bitterness.