Re: quantum physics and Buddhism

From: George Murphy <>
Date: Mon Jun 20 2005 - 07:15:47 EDT

But the relativistic picture is in a way less individualistic than Larkin's because there is continuity between the world tubes of different persons. If a maximal theory of common descent is correct, the world tubes of all living things on earth are connected in a space-time network.

Two classic SF stories that make use of the 4-D picture of human beings are Heinlein's "Timeline" (his 1st p[ublished story) & Harness's The Paradox Men.

  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Iain Strachan
  To: Glenn Morton
  Sent: Monday, June 20, 2005 3:11 AM
  Subject: Re: quantum physics and Buddhism

  Though it's not to do with science as such, Glenn's post reminded me of a remarkable metaphor of particles coming together, cohering for a time then scattering for life and death, in Philip Larkin's poem "The Old Fools":

At death you break up: the bits that were youStart speeding away from each other for everWith no one to see. It's only oblivion, true:We had it before, but then it was going to end,And was all the time merging with a unique endeavour
To bring to bloom the million-petalled flowerOf being here. Next time you can't pretendThere'll be anything else.
  Though Larkin's view is bleakly atheistic (Larkin was obsessed with a fear of death), I find it a remarkable metaphor that reminds me of the physics of what's going on (though Larkin was not a scientist), and also is a celebration of the preciousness of life itself (the "million-petalled flower/ Of being here").


  On 6/19/05, Glenn Morton <> wrote:
    Moorad wrote:
>I am not sure how to visualize humans embedded in a Minkowski
> spacetime.

    If you picture the worldliness of the particles that make up our bodies, we
    would appear as particles coming into a cloud and particles leaving the
    cloud as it traveled through time. At the end, when the material of our
    bodies is dispersed, the cloud disappears because the particles scatter.

  There are 3 types of people in the world.
  Those who can count and those who can't.
Received on Mon Jun 20 07:21:24 2005

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