Saturday, September 09, 2006

What really distinguishes between future and past?

Our knowledge about geometric future is very uncertain as compared to that about geometric past. Hence we usually use words like plan/hunch/hope/... in the case of geometric future and speak about memories in the case of geometric past. We also regard geometric past as something absolutely stable. Why we cannot remember geometric future as reliably as the geometric past? Is it that geometric future is highly unstable as compared to the geometric past? Why this should be the case? This provides a possible TGD based articulation for the basic puzzles relating to time experience. The latest progress in the understanding of quantum TGD allows a more detailed consideration of these questions.

1. Is p-adic-to-real phase transition enough?

The basic idea is that the flow of subjective time corresponds to a phase transition front representing a transformation of intentions to actions and propagating towards the geometric future quantum jump by quantum jump. All quantum states have vanishing total quantum numbers in zero energy ontology which now forms the basis of quantum TGD and this ontology allows to imagine models for what could happen in this process.

This starting point is the interpretation of fermions as correlates for cognition bosons as correlates for intentions/actions (see this). Fermions correspond to pairs of real and p-adic space-time sheets with opposite quantum numbers with p-adic space-time sheet providing a cognitive representation of the real space-time sheet. Bosonic space-time sheets would be either p-adic or real and thus represent intentions or actions. Fermionic world and its cognitive representations would be common to future and geometric past and the asymmetry would relate only to the intention-action dichotomy.

Geometric future contains a lot of p-adic space-time sheets representing intentions which transform to real space-time sheets allowing interpretation as desires inducing eventually neuronal activities. Time mirror mechanism for intentional action assumes that the phase transition gives rise to negative energy space-time sheets representing propagation of signals to geometric past where they induce neuronal activities. From Libet's experiments relating to neuronal correlates of volition the time scale involved is a fraction of second but an infinite hierarchy of time scales is implied by fractality.

Conservation of quantum numbers poses strong conditions on p-adic-to-real phase transition. Noether charges are in the real context given by integrals over partonic 2-surfaces. The problem is that these integrals do not make sense p-adically. There are two options.

a) Give up the notion of p-adic Noether charge so that it would not make sense to speak about four-momentum and other conserved quantum numbers in case of p-adic space-time sheet. This implies zero energy ontology in the real sector. All real space-time sheets would have vanishing conserved quantum numbers and p-adic-to real transition generates real space-time sheet complex with vanishing total energy. Negative energy signal must be somehow compensated by a positive energy state.

b) It might be however possible to assign charges to p-adic space-time sheets. The equations characterizing p-adic space-time sheet representing intention and corresponding real space-time sheet representing action are assumed to be given in terms of same rational functions with coefficients which are algebraic numbers consistent with the extension of p-adic numbers used so that the points common to real and p-adic space-time sheets are in this extension. If real charges belong to the algebraic extension used, one could identify the p-adic charges as real charges. Zero energy ontology requires the presence of positive energy real space-time sheets whose charges compensate those of negative energy space-time sheets. One possibility is that real and corresponding p-adic space-time sheets appear in pairs with vanishing total quantum numbers just as fermionic space-time sheets are assumed to occur (see this. In the case of fermions p-adic-to-real phase transition is impossible by Exclusion Principle so that a stable cognitive representation results.

The minimal option would be that p-adic space-time sheets possess negative energy and are transformed to negative energy signals inducing neuronal activities. The flow of subjective time would involve a transformation of the universe to zero energy universe in the sense that total conserved quantum numbers vanish in the real sense in bosonic sector but in fermionic sector real and p-adic charges compensate each other.

This picture is probably too simple. Robertson-Walker cosmology has vanishing density of inertial energy. Hence it would seem that real bosons and fermions should appear in both positive and negative energy states and the arrow of time defined by the direction of the propagation of the intention-to-action wave front would be local.

    The transition of the geometric past back to intentional phase would involve transformation of real bosons to p-adic ones and is in principle possible for this option. For the first option the transition could occur only for real states with vanishing total quantum numbers which would make this transition highly improbable and thus imply irreversibility.

    The basic criticism is that since intentions in the proposed sense do not involve any selection, one could argue that this picture is not enough to explain the instability of the geometric future unless the instability is due to the instability of p-adic space-time sheets in quantum jumps.

    2. Does intentional action transform quantum critical phase to non-quantum critical phase?

    It is far from clear whether the proposed model is not able to explain the uncertainty of the geometric future and relative stability of the geometric past related very intimately to the possibility to select between different options. TGD based view about dark matter as a hierarchy of phases characterized by M4 and CP2 Planck constants quantized in integer multiples of minimum value hbar0 of hbar (see this) suggests a more refined view about what happens in the quantum jump transforming intention to action.

    1. The geometric future of the living system corresponds to a quantum critical state which is a superposition of (at least) two phases. Quantum criticality means that future is very uncertain and universe can be in dramatically different macroscopic quantum states.

    2. Experienced flow of time corresponds to a phase transition front proceeding towards the geometric future quantum jump by quantum jump. In this transition intentional action represented by negative energy bosonic signals transforms the quantum critical phase to either of the two phases present. This selection between different phases would be the basic element of actions involving choice. The geometric past is stabilized so that geometric memories about geometric past are relatively stable. This picture applies always in some time scale and there is an entire hierarchy of time and spatial scales corresponding to the hierarchies of p-adic length scales and of Planck constants. Note that Compton length and time are proportional to hbar as is also the span of long term memories and time scale of planned actions.

    The (at least) two phases present at quantum criticality would have different values of Planck constants. In the simplest case the values of M4 and CP2 Planck constants for the second phase would correspond to the minimal value hbar0 of Planck constants. For instance, cell could be in quantum superposition of ordinary and high Tc super-conducting phase, with high Tc superconductor characterized by a large M4 Planck constant.

    Intentional action would induce a transition to either of these two phases. Sub-system would chose either the lower or higher level in the hierarchy of consciousness with level characterized by the values of Planck constants. This unavoidably brings in mind a moral choice. Intentional actions involve often a choice between good and bad and this choice could reduce to a choice between values of Planck constant. Good deed would lead to higher value of Planck constant and bad deed to a lower one. This interpretation conforms with the earlier view about quantum ethics stating that good deeds are those which support evolution. The earlier proposal was however based on the assumption that evolution means a gradual increase of a typical p-adic length scale and seems to be too restricted in the recent framework.

    For instance, in cell length scale the cells of the geometric future could be in quantum critical phase such that large hbar phase corresponds to high Tc super-conductivity and low hbar phase to its absence. In quantum jump cell would transform to either of these phases. The natural interpretation for the transition to low hbar phase is as cell death since the communications of the cell to and quantum control by the magnetic body are lost. Ageing could be seen as a process in which the transitions to small hbar phase begin to dominate or even the quantum criticality is lost. A model for the quantum criticality based on zeros of Riemann zeta developed here,here, here, here, and here allows a more quantitative view about what could happen in the phase transition.

    For more details see the chapter Time, Space-Time and Consciousness of "Biosystems as Conscious Holograms" or the chapter Quantum Model for Memory of "TGD Inspired Theory of Consciousness".

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