Does consciousness matter?

In conversation with ChatGPT

To what extent is matter a consequence of consciousness?

Matter is not a consequence of consciousness. Matter and consciousness are separate and distinct phenomena. The scientific consensus is that matter and the physical world exist objectively, regardless of human consciousness or perception. Consciousness is a complex neurobiological process that arises from the functioning of the brain, but it does not have the power to create or affect the physical world. While the relationship between matter and consciousness is still not fully understood, it is widely accepted that they are not causally linked in the sense that consciousness creates matter.

Well, if, from quantum theory and quantum mechanics, the observer effect holds, then a logical explanation can be that as soon as we observe or perceive something, it comes into existence, right?

The observer effect in quantum mechanics refers to the idea that the act of measurement or observation can influence the behavior of quantum systems, but it does not mean that the act of observation creates the physical world or matter itself. The observer effect simply describes how our act of measurement can disturb the quantum state of a system and lead to a collapse of the wave function, which gives us the definite result of our measurement.

Additionally, while quantum mechanics does describe some strange and counterintuitive phenomena, it does not support the idea that matter is solely a product of consciousness. The theory is still based on the underlying objective reality of matter, energy, and their interactions, and consciousness is not a fundamental part of the theory. Instead, it is widely believed that consciousness arises as an emergent property of the functioning of physical matter, such as the brain, and not the other way around.

Well, consider our sense like seeing, feeling, smelling, hearing, as acts of measurement. These acts then disturb the quantum state and lead to a collapse of wave functions, which then gives us the sensation of our senses.

The idea that our senses can be thought of as acts of measurement in quantum mechanics is a speculative and controversial one, and is not part of the mainstream interpretation of quantum theory. While it is true that our senses can be thought of as ways of gathering information about the physical world, it is not accurate to say that they disturb the quantum state and cause wave function collapse in the same way that a physical measurement device would.

In mainstream quantum theory, the act of measurement is described as being performed by a macroscopic device, such as a detector or a microscope, that interacts with the quantum system being measured. This interaction is considered to be the physical process that collapses the wave function and gives us a definite result. Our senses, on the other hand, are not considered to be physical measurement devices in this sense.

It is important to note that the relationship between quantum mechanics and consciousness is still not well understood, and this is an area of active research and debate in physics and philosophy. However, the mainstream view is that consciousness is not a fundamental aspect of quantum mechanics, but rather an emergent property of physical processes in the brain.

Published by Martien van Steenbergen

Martien is a Master Agile & Lean Trainer & Coach.

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