• Philosophy,  Physics

    Sāńkhya and Modern Atomism

    Sāńkhya has a theory of atomism, which is quite different than the theory of modern atomism. The modern description of atoms is based on the distinction between matter and force whereas the Sāńkhya description is based on the distinction between words and meanings. Clearly, we cannot expect the two descriptions to be similar, and making them similar or equivalent isn’t the point of the post. The key question is: Can we study what modern science calls atoms and molecules using Sāńkhya? If yes, how would this study be different from the study of atoms and molecules at present? This post answers many such questions, including why the particles of modern…

  • Philosophy,  Physics,  Religion

    Why Sāńkhya Is Important for Quantum Theory

    This post discusses the relevance of the idea of “gross” and “subtle” matter in Sāńkhya to the problems of prediction in quantum theory, highlighting the solution using everyday examples. I also discuss how the attempts to divorce “gross” and “subtle” matter, or reduce “subtle” matter to “gross” matter, lead to the widespread proliferation of alternate “spiritualities”, which are thriving on the misconceptions about the quantum problem: wherever you look, you can find impersonalistic or voidistic “spirituality” based on a flawed interpretation of the quantum phenomena. The post discusses why a solution to this problem based on Sāńkhya would not only produce a scientific theory and advance science to a newer…

  • Overview,  Philosophy,  Physics

    Quantum Motion – Elevators vs. Escalators

    While going down in an elevator, it recently occurred to me that the elevator doesn’t move unless we indicate the floor it has to go to, quite different from an escalator which keeps moving regardless of whether anyone has anywhere to go to. This difference is a useful way to understand how quantum “motion” is different from classical motion. This post explains the difference using the elevator vs. escalator analogy. The motion of the elevator explicitly employs meaning and purpose, while the motion of the escalator doesn’t. The difference helps us see why addressing many scientific problems needs a revision to our analogies about nature, and what such analogical shifts…

  • Biology,  Physics,  Research

    Quantum Theory and Evolution

    Darwinian evolution or evolutionary theory predates the development of modern physics—e.g. quantum theory. The time at which the theory was developed, the best known theory of matter was classical physics, in which matter always exists in definite states. Ideas such as random mutation and natural selection in evolution were incompatible with classical physics because randomness was injected into evolution. In quantum theory, however, there is an inherent randomness, although how this randomness is overcome to create observations itself remains an unsolved problem. Therefore, evolution is inconsistent with classical physics, and although it is conceptually consistent with quantum theory, the quantum phenomena themselves present a paradox that still remains unsolved. The…

  • Biology,  Computing,  Mathematics,  Physics

    Evolution and Mechanism – Are They Compatible?

    A computer is a canonical example of a machine. Every machine can be described by a mathematical theory, and every mathematical theory can be automated on a computer. Therefore if you could describe something mathematically, you could also automate it in a computer. People often suppose that this means if we had a mathematical description of nature, that description could also be automated on a machine. In the case of living beings, such an automation would mean that we too are automatons—machines. This post examines the issues in this argument, highlighting the holes in it.