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Oates, Robert M. Jr
Consciousness and the quantum: Maharishi's self-interacting dynamics of consciousness as the interpretation of quantum mechanics

From the beginning of the quantum era in 1900, physicists and philosophers wrestled unsuccessfully with the interpretation of quantum mechanics. Although the probabilistic predictions for large numbers of quantum events were impressively confirmed experimentally, no persuasive understanding of the workings of the quantum realm — and especially of the motions and interactions of individual quanta — had been offered. This dissertation intended to establish a consciousness-based interpretation of quantum mechanics through the comparison of what had been often called conventional quantum mechanics with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's self-interacting dynamics of consciousness .

In Part One, the current state of quantum interpretation was reviewed from a historical perspective, with the twin goals of (1) demonstrating that the materialist paradigm, along with its investigative modality, objective science, did not apply at the level of individual quanta and their interactions, and of (2) establishing conventional quantum mechanics as the most suitable and defensible version of quantum mechanics available (though it offered no understanding of the independent reality of the quantum realm).

In Part Two, Maharishi's theories of consciousness were laid out, with reliance as far as practicable on quotations from his published works, in the interests of both clarity and authenticity. Maharishi's theories were shown to be based, not on individual consciousness, but rather on an unbounded, omnipresent field of consciousness (like the gravitational field or the electromagnetic field), which, by virtue of its nature as consciousness, knows itself, thus stirring up fluctuations or vibrations in the abstract field of consciousness that appear first as subtle sound and then as 'material particles.'

In Part Three, quantum mechanics was compared against Maharishi's theories of consciousness, resulting in point-for-point isomorphism in even the most arcane details. The conclusions were that (1) quantum mechanics and Maharishi's self-interacting dynamics appeared to describe the same underlying reality, (2) aspects of quantum mechanics that appeared unresolvable conundrums, when viewed from the materialist perspective, appeared natural, and even necessary, from a consciousness-based perspective, and (3) Maharishi's self-interacting dynamics of consciousness therefore appeared as the first comprehensive and persuasive interpretation of quantum mechanics, a consciousness-based interpretation including the motion and interactions of individual quanta.

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