Mind/Matter Interaction: Can Mental Attention Directly Affect The Physical World?

by Arjun Walia
Collective Evolution

Decade after decade, various scientists have regarded the factors associated with consciousness (perception, feelings, emotions, mental attention, intention etc.) as a fundamental part of science – that one cannot fully understand science, especially quantum physics, without including the study of consciousness.

“I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.” – Max Planck, theoretical physicist who originated quantum theory, which won him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918.

When looking to discover and learn more about the true nature of reality, one thing scientists do is study matter (atoms). Although most modern day mainstream science is a science which operates under the assumption that matter is the only reality, this notion, known as “scientific materialism,” is disappearing at a fast rate given what quantum physics has shown us over the past few decades – that there are worlds existing beyond our perception and senses, and that what we perceive as empty space is not empty at all. Apart from this, decades of research and experiments within the realm of parapsychology have shown bizarre, inexplicable, yet repeatedly observable results indicating the great importance of consciousness that we don’t often consider, especially when it comes to science. It’s something that commonly goes overlooked, but maybe we should be paying closer attention to it.

How we think, what we think, how we perceive, and what we believe seems to have a large impact on what type of existence we create for ourselves as one race, influencing the type of human experience we enact. This makes it even more important for us to ask ourselves, on both an individual and collective level, who are we? Why do we think what we think? Why do we do what we do?

“It was not possible to formulate the laws of quantum mechanics in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness.” Eugene Wigner, theoretical physicist and mathematician. He received a share of the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1963

One question that has baffled scientists when it comes to matter is, can consciousness (direct human intention) directly alter the physical world we see around us? Can mind, literally, influence matter? What is the relationship between mind and matter and what does this mean about the true nature of our reality?

Where did this question come from? When did questions regarding the role of the human mind start to be considered? It’s a concept that scientists and philosophers throughout history have thought about.

“The concept that mind is primary over matter is deeply rooted in Eastern philosophies and ancient beliefs about magic.” - (1) Dr. Dean Radin

This is a great quote, we’ve (Collective Evolution) used it before:

“A fundamental conclusion of the new physics also acknowledges that the observer creates the reality. As observers, we are personally involved with the creation of our own reality. Physicists are being forced to admit that the universe is a ‘mental’ construction. Pioneering physicist Sir James Jeans wrote: ‘The stream of knowledge is heading toward a non-mechanical reality; the universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine. Mind no longer appears to be an accidental intruder into the realm of matter, we ought rather hail it as the creator and governor of the realm of matter. Get over it, and accept the inarguable conclusion. The universe is immaterial-mental and spiritual.'” – R.C. Henry, Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins University , “The Mental Universe” ; Nature 436:29,2005) (source)

The quote above is referring to the fact that, in physics, the “inescapable” ( Dean Radin (1) pg 135) fact that the act of observation changes the nature of a physical system could mean that consciousness (or factors associated with consciousness) can have an effect or carry some great significance when it comes to the make-up of what we call our physical world. One potential revelation of this experience is, again, that “the observer creates the reality.” A paper published in the peer-reviewed journal Physics Essays by Dean Radin, PhD, explains how this (the double slit experiment) has been used multiple times to explore the role of consciousness in shaping the nature of physical reality. (source)

The study found that factors associated with consciousness “significantly” correlated in predicted ways with perturbations in the double slit interference pattern. (source)
“Observation not only disturbs what has to be measured, they produce it. We compel the electron to assume a definite position. We ourselves produce the results of the measurement.”(source)
Another example within the realms of science could be the Placebo effect. A number of experiments and clinical trials have shown the power of belief when it comes to altering and healing biological systems. You can read more about and access some of those studies within this article. The potential power of consciousness, and why considerations of it, should be included within health care was also illustrated by scientists examining Buddhist monks who directed healing intention to cancer cells. You can read more about that (and access that study) within this article.

There is literally a wealth of scientific analysis and experimentation for one to shift through if interested in this topic. Truth is, there are more than 60 years of experiments and research available when it comes to scientists who have examined the mind-matter connection. The type of mind matter connection included in these studies includes literrally mentally influencing a physical system.

It’s 2015, and science is now more than ever beginning to accept these types of concepts and explore them more openly. Throughout history, our belief systems have prevented us from exploring concepts of our reality that contrasted the accepted belief systems at the time. Galileo is a great example, his work was banned and and forbidden for more than 200 years; he was convicted and placed under house arrest for more than 200 years.

These experiments have:

“Produced persuasive, consistent, replicated evidence that mental intention is associated with the behaviour of these physical systems.” (1) – Dean Radin

These experiments, usually labelled under the realm of paraspychological studies (psi), have shown scientists phenomenon that they have been able to observe repeatedly in a lab setting, but are still far from human understanding. There is something happening, regardless of whether we can explain it or not. The evidence is so clear that “informed skeptics are acknowledging that something interesting is going on.” – Dr. Dean Radin (1)

If you would like to further your research, for starters we recommend you visit the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS). IONS conducts, sponsors, and collaborates on leading-edge research into the potentials and powers of consciousness, exploring phenomena that do not necessarily fit conventional scientific models while maintaining a commitment to scientific rigor.

IONS is known for their sponsorship of and participation in original research and publication of articles in peer reviewed journals. They cover everything from consciousness and healing and worldview transformation to extended human capacities. You can access that research here.

The work of Dr. Dean Radin is also a great place to start. You can learn more about him here.

Article source:

(1) The Conscious Universe, Dean Radin, PhD. (book)

All other sources are highlighted thrhought the article.

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