Sunday, May 06, 2012

The mystery of time again

The relationship between experienced time and time of physicis is one of the basic puzzles of modern physics.
In the proposed framework they are certainly two different things and the challenge is to understand why the correlation between them is so strong that it has led to their identification. One can imagine several alternative views explaining this correlation (see this,this, and this), and it is better to keep mind open.

Basic questions

The flow of subjective time corresponds to quantum jump sequences for sub-selves of self having interpretation as mental images. If mind is completely empty of mental images subjectively experienced time ceases to exists. This leaves however several questions to be answered.

  1. Why the contents of conscious of self comes from a finite space-time region looks like an easy question. If the contents of consciousness for subselves representing mental images is localized to the sub-CDs with indeed have defined temporal position inside CD assigned with the self the contents of consciousness is indeed from a finite space-time volume. This implies a new view about memory. There is no need to store again and again memories to the "brain now" since the communications with the geometric past by negative energy signals and also time-like negentropic quantum entanglement allow the sharing of the mental images of the geometric past.

  2. There are also more difficult questions. Subjective time has arrow and has only the recent and possibly also past. The subjective past could in principle reduce to subjective now if conscious experience is about 4-D space-time region so that memories would be always geometric memories. How these properties of subjective time are transferred to apparent properties of geometric time? How the arrow of geometric time is induced? How it is possible that the locus for the contents of conscious experience shifts or at least seems to be shifted quantum jump by quantum jump to the direction of geometric future? Why the sensory mental images are located in a narrow time interval of about .1 seconds in the usual states of consciousness (not that sensory memories are possible: scent memories and phantom pain in leg could be seen as examples of vivid sensory memory)?
Just to make illustrate how many different aspects are involved and in the hope that various constraings would allow to select among many alternatives that one can imagine (and have imagined!), let us first try to list basic questions in the framework provided by ZEO.
  1. ZEO forces the arrow of geometric time to become a property of zero energy states. What does this mean concretely? Could the observed arrow of time reduce solely to this arrow?

  2. Do sub-CD:s drift in preferred time direction inside CD? Or do space-time sheets drift inside CD to preferred direction. Or is there a a phase transition proceeding in the direction of geometric time of CD associated with the entire CD and inducing state function reduction for sub-CDs: it would not matter what is boundary of sub-CD is selected if sub-CD would be effectively point-like. The quantum arrow of time for zero energy state should force preferred direction of this phase transition.

  3. Does the U process as a cascade proceeding from long scales of CDs to short ones involve explicitly the arrow of geometrc time. For instance, could state function reduction cascade for sub-CDs with a given scale correspond to a process analogous to burning proceeding towards geometric future? Or could a phase transition transforming p-adic space-time sheets to real ones as a realization of intentional action proceed in this manner?

  4. Do space-time sheets possess an arrow of geometric time coming from the failure of strict determinism (shock waves in hydrodynamics) and giving space-time correlate for the quantum arrow of time? In hydrodynamics second law allows to select between alternative developments in multi-furcation. Could second law or NMP be involved also now?

  5. What is the role of the fractal hierarchy of CD? Also entanglement between sub-CDs carrying zero energy states is possible. Could the state function reductions occurring for sub-CDs give rise to the experience of flow of time at the level of CD. Do these quantum jumps occur for some reason ina time ordered manner (light-cone proper time defines a unique Lorentz invariant time ordering). Could the entanglement anatomy of zero energy states force this automatically? The process would be analogous to burning.

  6. Suppose that the idea about time flip-flop meaning that unitary process reduces to a base change between basis with opposite arrows of geometric time. Doesn't this imply that the arrow of geometric time changes its direction alternately or is there a manner to avoid this conclusion?

  7. State function reduction involves a reduction of entanglement between quantum variables and classical variables represented by zero modes in TGD Universe. Does this reduction play a kay role in the generation of the arrow of time. What is the role of negentropic entanglement? For instance, could it be that the generation of negentropic entanglement at second end of the CD stabilizes the states with respect to state function reduction leading to counterpart of Orch OR?

  8. The geometry of light-cone has intrinsic arrow of time. The question is how this arrow induces the arrow of experienced geometric arrow of time with minimal assumption (from the structure of zero energy states).

  9. The localization of sensory experience to short time interval does not define so strong constraint as one might think since if sensory mental images correspond to small enough sub-CDs, the localization inside sub-CD is enough. For CD itself the localization to either boundary looks naturl since state function reduction takes place at the boundary.

First trial

Possible answers to these questions could rely on NMP if understood as a sufficiently general principle. Suppose that NMP translates to the statement that selves are eager to gain conscious information. The mere assumption that selves are curious leaves a lot of room for alternatives and one can imagine several models. Note also that geometric time can correspond to the local time assignable to space-time sheet or to the cosmic time assignable to the CD or to 8-D imbedding space.

  1. The space-time in the geometric future above the "upper" light-like boundary of CD represents the unknown where the news come from. Negentropic self has to some extent free will and can perform quantum jumps inducing effectively the shift of the quantum superposition of the space-time surfaces towards geometric past. The news come from the future and represent sensory input and induce subselves as mental images. The population of sensory subselves would tend to be created near the "upper" boundary of CD. This would induce a breaking of time reversal invariance and spontanous arrow of geometric time. Self would be like a person in movie theater. Self would not move anywhere, space-time surfaces -the film- would move with respect to self.

  2. One can consider also alternative view analogous to the standard view if one assumes that the CDs representing subselves can shift towards geometric future in the sequence of quantum jumps. Suppose that U process creates a quantum superposition over temporal positions of CD and that temporal localization takes place during the state function reduction process. Also now the strong form of NMP could force a drift of the sub-self population towards unkown defining the geometric future. The geometric time would be assignable to the larger CD. Also the first option allows drifting of subselves to the upper boundary of CS as a consequence of
    strong form of NMP.
One might hope that spontaneous breaking of time reversal invariance alone could explain the induced arrow of geometric time so that the arrow of time would not be a result of intentional action. Following options represent attempts to understand the arrow of cosmic time as something analogous to diffusion in half-space.
  1. Self is a subself of larger self and the corresponding CD could induce a breaking of time reversal invariance since the proper time coordinate for CD has only positive values so that a diffusion and even drift towards geomeric future could result. If subself is nearer to the lower boundary of the larger CD it tends to diffuse upwards and vice versa. In the middle of the larger CD, where the analog of cosmic expansion changes to contraction geometric time would stop.

  2. Second option is based on the observation that the size scale of given CD must increase on the average during quantum jump sequence. These events correspond to phase transitions increasing the size scale of CD by a factor of two and could serve as correlate for cosmic expansion. When one fixes either tip of CD, the second tip moves towards future with respect to it in discrete phase transition like steps. This discrete time evolution might define a quantum correlate for the flow of cosmic time at imbedding space level kenociteallb/cosmo.
More detailed discussions of the problem can be found here. In any case, it must be admitted that something important piece of understanding is still lacking. The following represents one of the many attempts to identify this piece and relies on single new input: zero energy states possess quantum arrow of time.

Second trial

ZEO allows to assign to zero energy states an arrow of time naturally since one can require that states have well defined single particle quantum numbers at either upper or lower boundary of CD. Also the spontaneous change of the arrow of geometric time is possible. The simplest possible description for U-process is that U-matrix relates to each other these two kinds of states and state function reductions occur alternately at upper and lower boundaries of CD meaning reduction to single particle states with well defined quantum numbers. The localization of sensory experience to short time interval could also correspond to mental images with size scale of CD being about .1 seconds so that the assumption that localization inside CD to either boundary takes place is not absolutely necessary.

It is unclear whether this identification of the unitary process allows a generation of a universal arrow of geometric time. It would seem that the arrow of time as a property of zero energy states must alternate for the proposed mechanism. But is this really the case? To answer this question one must try to understand how the observer concludes that there is geometric arrow of time.

  1. This situation could correspond to single arrow of geometric time for a conscious entity if it resides permanently at either boundary of CD: does this mean a sleep-awake cycle of consciousness as a basic attribute of conscious experience? The hierarchy of CDs allows however to think that the scale in which the arrow of time as deduced from cosmology alternates in time scale of lifetime of the Universe so that unique arrow of time would be observed. In time scales shorter than that assignable to the CD of observer the arrow of time would vary periodically (generalized sleep-wake cycle).

  2. Does the time flip-flop between upper and lower boundaries of CD really give rise to a variation of perceived arrow of geometric time? Suppose that quantum arrow of time has a direct counterpart in the time evolution of preferred extremals (dissipative processes). The direction of classical dissipation changes as the quantum arrow of time changes. Space-time evolution with a fixed geometric arrow of time would be effectively folded forth and back.

    If this were the case, it seems that self has no means of detecting this change in the classical dynamics of preferred extremals assignable to its own CD. This if only the information about space-time sheet is used. The only manner to detect the change of the arrow of time would by looking the classical dynamics of larger CDs.

    If the arrow for the larger CD remains the same when the arrow of geometric time for CD changes, self could detect the change of its own geometric arrow of time. For instance, self would experience dissipation inside its own CD to take place in opposite direction compared to that in larger scales. Here one however encounters a problem since in living systems the dissipation indeed could take place in wrong direction: this has even inspired the introduction of the notion of syntropy kenocitebneu/syntropy. Self should however observe that the clocks defined by larger scale system run in wrong direction. But if the single half-period in the reduction cycle corresponds to life-cycle then also this is possible only after what we would call biological death!

Suppose that one just for a moment accepts this picture in absence of anything better. One can argue that there must exist concrete correlates for the flow of time experienced by self in terms of quantum dynamics of sub-selves. One should understand what the fractal hierarchy of selves really means at the level of conscious experience and of its physical correlates. Several mechanisms at space-time level for the generation of arrow of time have been discussed but the really satisfactory mechanism remains to be identified.

Is there a phase transition proceeding in the direction of geometric time of CD associated with the entire CD and inducing state function reduction for sub-CDs: it would not matter what is boundary of sub-CD is selected if sub-CD would be effectively point-like. The quantum arrow of time for zero energy state should force preferred direction of this phase transition.

  1. Could it be that this phase transition like process corresponds to a sequence of state function reductions for
    sub-CDs of given size proceeding to the future. Could the fractal structure of zero energy states give rise to this structure? Ordinary Feynman diagrams would describe only single level in this hierarchy and state function reductions selecting subset of diagrams with given incoming and outgoing states are not possible. Suppose that zero energy states satisfy in very symbolic sense the recursion relation

    Ψn= Ψn,0+ ∑0<k<nΨn-ko Ψk.

    Here n corresponds to the size scale of CD. Ψn,0 corresponds an irreducible contribution corresponding to the ordinary Feynman diagrams for which no state function reduction in intermediate states is possible: this would be like dropping out subset of Feynman diagrams. The second term corresponds to splitting two two sub-CDs and is possible only in ZEO. We of course do physics in various scales without formal theoretical justification. For instance, we calculate QCD type process we can restrict the consideration to corresponding time scales. The decomposition would express this fact as a law of physics.

    For these lower level contributions similar equation can be applied and one repeat the recursion down to the lowest level. "o" symbolizes entanglement between the zero energy states Ψn-k and Ψk.

  2. Suppose that at the first step state function reduction has led to prepared states at -say- upper end (corresponding to Ψk). This is nothing but the basic assumption about zero energy states. At the next step the reduction reduces the entanglement between Ψn-k and Ψk: essentially the sum defining an element for a product AB of matrices reduces to a product of two elements: ∑jAij Bjk → Aij Bjk. Time ordering of the reductions is unavoidable at this level since sub-CDs are in question. This process would continue fractally downwards to shorter scales. Complete time ordering results if the reduction for Ψk proceeds to the short scales first and only then for Ψn-k. Othwerwise reduction sequences would occur for sub-CDs at different temporal positions simultaneously.

  3. There is also entanglement with zero modes at each level but it seems that this entanglement is not relevant for this argument reducing the arrow to recursive property of states and to the factorization of two entangled zero energy states at given level of recursion.

  4. This view about unitary process would explain the arrow of geometric time, explain why self experiences lower level state functions as time flow, and would also allow to understand the localization of sensory and various other kinds of experiences and also intentional action to short time interval.

For backbground see the chapter About the Nature of Time of "TGD Inspired Theory of Consciousness".


At 11:07 AM, Blogger Ulla said...

an experiment that was recently published in the journal Science showing that scientists could retroactively change something that had happened in the past. Particles had to decide how to behave when they hit a beam splitter. Later on, the experimenter could turn a second switch on or off. It turns out that what the observer decided at that point, determined what the particle did in the past. Regardless of the choice you, the observer, make, it is you who will experience the outcomes that will result. The linkages between these various histories and universes transcend our ordinary classical ideas of space and time.

Link from Sarfatti. He thinks much of time and death.

At 3:17 PM, Anonymous ◘Fractality◘ said...


"It seems, indeed, as though time, far from being an abstraction, is a concrete continuum which contains qualities or basic conditions that manifest themselves simultaneously in different places through parallelisms that cannot be explained causally, as, for example, in cases of the simultaneous occurrence of identical thoughts, symbols, or psychic states."

- C.G. Jung

One and the same transcendental meaning might manifest itself simultaneously in the human speech and in the arrangement of an external and independent event. Synchronicity is a phenomenon of the Universe.


At 7:27 PM, Anonymous Orwin said...

On this site you see neurologist Karl Pribram make his peace with the Jungians:

He says the brain works by Fourier analysis, which encompasses many frequencies in one process, and, yes, "now" is scale-independent.

Also that perception depends on covariant tensors, and action on the contra-variant or affine. That's the strongest lead I've found in a long while.

Interestingly, gestures are reversible, but speech isn't, and language generates history.

At 7:51 PM, Anonymous said...

To Ulla:

This finding about editable past supports the quantum superposition of space-times - space-time surfaces in TGD framework. Stationary phase approximation allows to speak about single space-time in semiclassical approximation. Each quantum jump replaces it with a new one in each scale and geometric past indeed changes.

To Fractality:

Synchronizity realized as negentropic entanglement assignable to magnetic flux tubes becomes quite concrete in all scales.

To Orwin: I am not enthusiastic on covariant tensor on perception. It would be forcing of consciousness theory to the mathematical format of relativities.
Gestures reversible- speech not. What does this statement mean?

At 9:16 PM, Anonymous ◘Fractality◘ said...


How does this negentropic entanglement relate to the notion of CDs? Could it be seen as an "overlap" of CDs within CDs?

At 6:11 AM, Anonymous said...

To Fractality:

Good question! I do not have clearcut answer.
Whether the overlap of CDs is forbidden for some reason remains an open question. This would simply the vision about Feynman diagrammatics. One possibility is that overlap is a necessary condition for negentropic entanglement: flux tubes would connect only space-time sheets inside CDs which overlap.

Second question relates to whether space-time sheets can continue beyond CDs. This is possible and generalize Feynman diagrams suggest this. CD would be kind of localized spotlight of consciousness is this is the case.

At 1:51 PM, Anonymous Orwin said...

Pribram is a cognitive theorist and materialist (like Jung!) and does not have a phenomenology, just a view of neural process. For phenomenology there is this very powerful prime representation theory:

Certainly, grasping relativities of motion is an effort, and relaxed awareness is not metric.
But how then causality at the heart of consciousness? That reminds me of Ken Wilber. But QCD = QFT aint a done deal either.

At 8:13 PM, Anonymous said...

If one accepts the non-materialistic view - that is quantum jump as a re-creation, then causality of volition is unavoidably the core element of consciousness.

For the materialistic approach (Pribram) the causality of volition reduces to that of deterministic laws of nature and the challenge is to why we should have the illusory experiences of choice and decision. Why almost everything we say spontaneously reflects these experiences? To exclude from world view something so fundamental is madness. This madness originated in the Newtonian revolution, which led to the belief that the laws of Nature must be fully deterministic.

Personally I have never experienced the wonderful feeling that as a physicist in deterministic world I can in principle predict everything: I am the Overlord. But I remember how difficult it was still to get the courage to see the absolutely obvious: the majority of the science community is deadly wrong. The psychological root of materialism are in a primitive greed for power.

Also the Boolean logic has beautiful physical counterpart: Fock state basis for fermions gives rise to Boolean algebra and in ZEO zero energy states have interpretation as statements A--->B . Quantum superposition at the other end even makes possible A "may imply" B ("may" and "must" are discussed in the article of the link).

At 9:12 PM, Anonymous said...

To Fractality:

I forgot to consider one possible interpretation for the hierarchy of Planck constants. Could it be space-time correlate for what happens in quantum measurement? No! As the following arguments show.

Consider first the interpretation for quantum measurement in terms of quantum classical correspondence.

a) Initially one has a superposition of orthogonal basis states. Then each state in this superposition entangles with macroscopic degrees of freedom, and one obtains a superposition of pairs of states. A second system - the measuring classical system- enters the game. It's states are macroscopic- like positions of a pointer.

b) In TGD Universe macroscopic degrees of freedom correspond to zero modes not contributing to the metric of WCW. Classical induced Kahler field at partonic 2-surfaces is a zero mode, a purely classical variable. If effective 2-dimensionality holds true, the interior degrees of freedom for 3-surfaces represent zero modes too apart from normal derivatives so that one does not have genuine 2-dimensionality.

c) At the first end of CD -initial state- one has a superposition of space-time surfaces which degenerate to single 3-surface, the prepared state. The normal derivatives of imbedding space coordinates at partonic 2-surfaces (or space-like 3-surfaces) correlate with the quantum numbers of quantum state in the basis considered. Quantum classical correspondence requires this. Bohr orbit property implies that the distributions of normal derivatives of H coordinates form a discrete set. This is like quantization of canonical momenta. To concretize this, consider as an exercise what happens in Stern-Gerlach experiment: electron beam splits to two in magnetic field with gradient.

d) At the second end of CD the superposition of space-time surfaces degenerates again since the branches co-incide but only after the state function reduction. This degeneration condition would be the boundary condition at both ends of CDs. It would be space-time correlate for what happens in state function preparation and reduction: entanglement disappears. This does not happen in the case of negentropic entanglement.

Also the hierarchy of Planck constants realized in terms of singular coverings involves branching which degenerates at the ends of CDs. How does this relate to quantum measurement?

a) For hbar= n_1n_2*hbar_0 light-like orbit of partonic 2-surface defining wormhole throat branches to n_1 branches at wormhole throat. Space-like 3-surface at the boundary of CD to branches n_2 3-surfaces. At partonic 2-surface branching to n_1n_2 surfaces occurs so that space-time interior is n_1n_2-branched. This can be also expressed in terms of brane language.

b) Now one does not however have a quantum superposition of these orbit but each orbit is simultaneously present. *Direct sum* - quantum superposition- is replaced with *tensor product*: many particle states consisting of states at different branches of space-time surface. Therefore this situation does not correspond to entangled superposition in state function reduction.

The situation is geometrically analogous to that for branes with N copies which become infinitesimally near to each other and co-incide. One has second quantization of the original system- not its measurement : this conforms with quantum math ideas discussed in previous postings.

*The state fun

At 3:27 AM, Anonymous Orwin said...


Rational mechanics is not determinist: we have determinism from particle metaphysics, Leibniz and Laplace. Voluntarism or Unitarianism is also very ancient: Patanjali called it "willfulness without origin or terminus," and sought a path (pathan) of semantic balance or grace, also known as the Middle Way or Golden Mean (Aristotle, Confucius).

The infinity of branes you describe forms a clone ( principal quantum orbitals are like that, converging on the ionization energy, and the second quantized field follows directly. But clones yield only first-order logic, while the topos theory I mentioned earlier gives a full modal logic with possible worlds and thus possibility of choice. This or an equivalent you need to generate coverings and WCW.

I don't like Pribram's input-output interpretation: CS Peirce rubbished that at the beginning. But von Uexkuell, Jakobson and Lacan picked up the feedback and interactions, where the complexity ranges beyond what can ever be axiomatized (

At 4:21 AM, Anonymous said...

To Orwin:

I do not know what you mean with rational mechanics.

At 10:36 PM, Anonymous ◘Fractality◘ said...


Thanks for your extensive reply.

I hope you don't mind my non-linear mode of communication. I glue here a link to a webpage that resonates with your book addressing the Fermi paradox.


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