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Hot Discussion with Jack Sarfatti on Bohm Theory



[Jack Sarfatti]
My sense of reality is intact, coherent and comprehensive, thank you.

[Peter Mutnick]
It seems vastly oversimplified to me - not enough metaphysical depth to explain *any* of the facts of phenomenology or ontology, which you falsely regard as *just* elements a word game. That attitude is exactly like saying that the equations of physics are *just* elements of a mathematical game, which even you, following Feynman, vehemently reject.

Your mathematical complexity involving hyperspace and quantum gravity loops doesn't seem well explicated philosophically, so that no light is shed on any of the great questions of philosophy. Your approach seems very characteristic of a Dark Age to me.

[Mutnick, prev.]
We have bubbkas: a bunch of fragments that don't add up to a coherent picture, and that is a definition of a Dark Age.

[Sarfatti]
Hey we agree. Of course this is Bohm's fragmentation idea. For a brief moment there was lucidity in Saint Peter's mind field illuminated by Sar's penetrating intellect. :-)

[Mutnick]
OK, but your solution seems to me reductionistic and physicalistic. Why in God's name do all elements of reality have to be physical? The essence of all modern physics and philosophy is that such a physicalist premise is false.

[Sarfatti]
There are two Bohm's. Bohm, The Physicist and Bohm the New Age Mystic. Do not confound the two.

[Mutnick]
This type of bifurcation mutilates the real person, David Bohm. It is a huge disservice to the person you claim to emulate and to the person's spirit.

[Sarfatti]
Bohm's later softer ideas on "implicate order" especially on "super implicate order" did not have an adequate mathematical basis.

[Mutnick]
That is obviously true, but Bohm had very definite ideas about how the theory should evolve in such a way as to provide real answers to the deep questions of physics and philosophy. You are not following those ideas, and you seem to be in complete denial (or else complete ignorance) about what they are.

[Sarfatti]
It was an idea looking for a formalism the opposite of M-theory which a formalism looking for an idea. I suspect, Ashtekar's loop quantum gravity combined with hyperspace M-theory will provide the formalism to Bohm's idea of the "super-implicate order" and I am working on that with Saul-Paul Sirag in the context of V.I. Arnold's "mathematical TOE".

[Mutnick]
Quantum-mind advocates are often accused of assuming that because we have two mysteries they *must* be related as aspects of the same mystery. In the case of the quantum and the mind, that is not such a bad assumption, because both the quantum and the mind *are* equally fundamental to reality. But in the case of these complicated mathematical inventions, there is no legitimate claim to being fundamental. If someone could explain from first axioms why any of these mathematical schemes *must* be fundamental to reality, then there would be some basis for presuming that they are equivalent to the type of fundamental constructions of phenomenological reality attempted by Bohm. Otherwise, such a presumption is wrongly motivated, especially when the premises of the mathematical monstrosities are really in total opposition to Bohm's philosophy.

[Sarfatti]
Nonsense. Solitary confinement for you on bread and chocolate. You sound like Hitler berating the Poles for forcing him to Blitz them in 1939. The Bohrians ruled the roost for 75 years and still do. The little band of Bohmistas hiding in the fringes between the cracks in the Ivy Tower.

[Mutnick]
You are projecting again. The Bohrians never blitzed the Bohmians, since they never took them that seriously. It is the Bohmians who have been blitzing the Bohrians, and they have all but succeeded in discrediting the founders of quantum theory. That attitude will lead us directly into the Dark Ages, even as Bohm's real approach would have led us out of it.

[Mutnick, prev.]
Of course, there is no real evidence to support Beller's thesis - it is entirely a campaign of disinformation.

[Sarfatti]
That is your paranoia I think. Why do you think that?

[Mutnick]
Again, you are projecting. It is Beller's tone that sounds paranoid. Her disdain for Bohr is absurd - he was a very great man and a very great physicist, whatever his limitations may have been. He was certainly as sincere a man as has ever lived.

[Mutnick, prev.]
Bohmian mechanics, as the "Bohmians" interpret it, does not even address the big questions, which interface with the "hard problem" in philosophy.

[Sarfatti]
Red Herring. Bohm's causal theory of 1952 was not designed to address the issues of consciousness. Indeed, Bohm exorcised consciousness from causal theory. He is correct. There is no consciousness in the orthodox quantum theory that Bohm's causal theory covers. You need a post-quantum theory that covers causal theory to regain consciousness.

Causal theory (orthodox quantum theory) is Paradise Lost

Post-quantum theory is Paradise Found.

The "hard problem" is a pseudo-problem based on an incomplete ontology.

[Mutnick]
We both agree that the 1952 theory posed a problem more than a solution, but you ignore Bohm's own solution to the problem and substitute your own, which is at best a small part of Bohm's more comprehensive and cosmic solution. You have every right to propose your own solution, but you have no right, IMHO, to obscure Bohm's own solution or promote disinformation about what it really was. I have presented the quotes and arguments which establish what it really was, and it was NOT the "Bohmian mechanics" of the "Bohmians", nor was it your "post-quantum" theory. I could go much further in modeling mathematically what it really was, if I were inspired to do so, but the response so far has been less than encouraging. No one seems to give a rat's ass about what the truth really is, concerning Bohm theory, Bohr theory, or anything else for that matter. The level of dialectic in America and the rest of the world is virtually non-existent, despite all this new technology which might enable it.

[Mutnick, prev.]
The Copenhagen Interpretation does, and one of the devastating consequences of the campaign of disinformation on the part of the "Bohmians" is that philosophers like David Chalmers have been blinded to the potential unification of physics and philosophy, which was the promise of quantum theory.

[Sarfatti]
Explain.

[Mutnick]
Stapp has pointed you in the right direction, and I am going further in the development of a fully metaphysical quantum theory that does solve the hard problem, but you insist that we are mad and only you mad ones are sane. You have blunted the force of Stapp's argument with the philosophers, to the extent that they feel justified in ignoring it.

[Mutnick, prev.]
I have been up close and personal with a lot of dogs and I have *no* idea how their minds work. Sometimes, perspective and personal revelation within one's own mind is much more valuable.

[Sarfatti]
Narcissus speaks.

[Mutnick]
Narcissus metamorphosed! That metamorphosis can only occur through introspection and meditation. In lieu of that, what you see in the great physicists you meet is just their narcissistic image as a projection of your own.

[Mutnick, prev.]
I have made eminent sense of Bohr's interpretation, and no one seems to care.

[Sarfatti]
Ponder on what that fact might really mean.

[Mutnick]
Life is absurd.

[Mutnick, prev., cont.]
But the fact is that it does make sense to me and I have explained thoroughly the way in which it does make sense, if anyone in the future cares to know the truth.

[Sarfatti]
You have built a House of Illusion and moved into it.

[Mutnick]
I built it, but under the direction of another. Whether it be illusion or truth depends on that source. I myself have only anecdotal evidence of what that source might be.

[Mutnick, prev.]
According to Bohm's real teaching, motion must be redefined.

[Sarfatti]
How? Uh oh, now I got you started riding up and down furiously on your hobby horse.

[Mutnick]
The standing apart in the infinitesimal moment of time is a real existential standing apart from the phenomenal nexus of space and time. The standing apart is hence virtual. This is the essence of quantum motion and the beginning and end of Whitehead's process theory.

[David Bohm]
"Although these ideas are only implicit in the present form of the theory, we wish to suggest here in a speculative way that the successful extension of quantum theory to the domain of nuclear dimensions may perhaps introduce more explicitly the idea that the nature of what can exist at the nuclear level depends to some extent on the macroscopic environment."

[Sarfatti]
Remember Peter the above quotes were written before Bohm met Einstein on the path at Princeton! Indeed, I learned quantum theory from Bohm's book the summer of 1958 between my sophomore and junior years at Cornell when I was apprentice to Robert Wilson (later head of Fermi Lab) taking apart the 1 Bev I think electron synchrotron in the basement of Newman Laboratory of Nuclear Studies, also I worked the beam at night and drove everyone absolute bonkers. It was a Jerry Lewis comedy.

[Mutnick]
What Bohm said of Einstein was that he found the same openness and absence of boundaries only in one other person: Jiddu Krishnamurti. If anything, Bohm's contact with Einstein is in part what led to the deepening of his vision, in exactly the way that the "Bohmians" reject.

[Mutnick, prev.]
What Bohm did say that Mara Beller falsely interpreted as a departure from Copenhagen was that quantum mechanics introduced new conceptions of momentum and energy. Instead of being entirely derivable from the concept of position and mass, as these are in classical mechanics, they now become independent concepts on an equal footing in terms of primacy with position and mass.

[Sarfatti]
How do you get that from what you cite above? Justify.

[Mutnick]
Bohm says this explicitly, and it is of course obvious, although its significance is often overlooked. It means that we need a new definition of motion. Even the application of special relativity to quantum theory is not justified, since it contains the presumption of classical motion, which is against the axioms of quantum theory!



Peter Joseph Mutnick 1949 - 2000


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