S: In this episode number 151, we’re going down the rabbit hole where quantum physics meets consciousness and mysticism, frankly. Our guide into this mysterious unknown is Dr. Amit Goswami. He’s a Theoretical Quantum Physicist, a retired full professor from the University of Oregon’s Department of Physics. He’s also a pioneer of the new paradigm of science called Science within Consciousness. An idea he explicated in his seminal book, The Self-Aware Universe where he also solved the quantum measurement problem elucidating the famous observer effect. Dr. Goswami is also the author of The Visionary Window, Physics of the Soul, The Quantum Doctor, Creative Evolution, God Is Not Dead, Quantum Creative, Quantum Economics, and The Everything Answer Book. In his private life, Goswami is a practitioner of spirituality and transformation. He calls himself a Quantum Activist. He appeared in the film, What the Bleep Do We Know!? and it’s sequel, Down the Rabbit Hole, as well as a documentaries, Dalai Lama Renaissance, and the award-winning, The Quantum Activist. Dr. Amit, it’s great to have you on the show.
A: Wonderful to be on the show.
S: I would love to, first of all, get a sense for what transpired to get you on the movie, What the Bleep Do We Know!? I love that movie. I remember seeing that for the first time shortly after it came out and I just thought that was the coolest movie. It’s so great that you were on it. How did that come about?
A: I got a call from Betsy Chasse who was a producer of the movie saga when she was the one who was contacting all these scientists. She called me and said, “This movie is a message of quantum physics and since you were one of the pioneers, we would like to interview you.” Of course, I said yes and that’s how the three of them, the director, the money guy and Betsy, teamed up and they did a fantastic interview, I guess.
S: What did you all end up discussing because I’m sure that a ton of it was left out, not put into the movie. Usually, that’s what happens, is they’ll take hours of footage and then put a few minutes in or whatever. How much interviewing did they do of you?
A: I did six hours
S: Six hours. Wow.
A: A lot to get the snippets that they wanted to put in although they did do a sequel, Down the Rabbit Hole, which had more of the scientists’ part in it so that did some more justice. The full thing, which is five hours, did even more of it but even then it must have taken hours. Probably, the total could have been 100 hours that they recorded all the scientists.
S: What was the thing that you most wished that you had put into the movie but they didn’t?
A: That was in 2004 and 2002 when the movie was being made. I liked the three of them. I liked the director of intelligence very much but you know, at that time, many people were asking me to be on their movie just as snippets and most of them, of course, did not come across or did not get to listen at all so I was not taking it too seriously. In fact, when the movie came out, I was called by the local newspaper people about the movie and I said, “What movie?” They said, “Well, you were in it so you don’t know about it?” I really didn’t know although I did then remember that they did send me a video of the whole scene but I didn’t even open the video nor looked at it so I said, “I really don’t know. You fill me in.” They filled me in and that’s how I came to know. Later on, of course, I did see the movie, eventually. The movie becoming a success was the funniest thing in my mind because none of those documentaries in those days were making much of a splash, and the reason simply was that nobody was pushing the right button, and these people are really, really creative and they pushed the right buttons and it clicked with the people.
S: Yeah, it sure did. Let’s start talking about quantum physics, consciousness, spirituality and higher power and all that. How did you figure that quantum physics proves the existence of God?
A: That’s very simple. This is a good question to start with and it’s very simple to answer but it’s straightforward with not much of debate although what God is, there’s a lot of debate about that. From the science side, what is sure is that quantum physics, from the beginning, tells us that objects are waves of possibility and, of course, it is very clear from the beginning that waves of possibility cannot reside in space and time; what we see is actuality, not possibility. The waves must reside somewhere, and that suggested the very awkward possibility that there’s another domain of reality aside from space and time. Of course, scientists were very leery about that. They have, for a long time, been saying that there is only one domain: nature, which is space and time. Everything else is supernatural; they don’t exist. They’re imagination. All of a sudden, in a middle of it, the center point of all physics is quantum physics and it’s saying absolutely stubborn that there’s another domain of reality. A lot of equivocation went on but then somebody pointed out, actually–that somebody was quite famous–Einstein, Podolsky and Rosen, they wrote a very famous paper, suggesting that, “Look, if this domain exists, then there should be faster than the speed of light traveled or speed of light communication.” Faster than the speed of light, infinite speed of communication, that’s not possible in space and time so this domain is characterized by this characteristic. Communication in that domain is instantaneous, with infinite speed. That cannot happen in space and time. We really have to face up with the fact that if this effort is discovered, then there is another domain of reality, no questions asked. Indeed, in 1982, Aspect and his collaborators and friends, they discovered this domain experimentally that proved that, yes, there is faster than light communication between objects and, therefore, this domain really exists.
S: Is that quantum entanglement?
A: That’s the quantum entanglement and that is also nonlocality. It’s called nonlocality. This existence of nonlocality is the proof of God.
S: I remember that Einstein didn’t quite buy that at the time and he called it Spooky Action at a Distance, didn’t he?
A: Exactly, and you’d have to reach that, but I think you’ll gladly—it grows because he was a God-fancier. If you realized it, at the time, nobody was realizing it because people’s attention was all into western philosophy and how westerners think of consciousness. They looked into eastern philosophy, mystical philosophy or what is called mysticism now, but, of course, this wisdom developed not from mystical thinking but from experience. This research in India 5,000 years ago predicted that, yes, consciousness is one and this non-locality means that communications are just oneness. That idea itself, people are very scared of, voicing it this way. If you and I communicate instantly, then there’s no separation between us; we are one. That is the entirety of what the nature of Eastern God is. Western God is very complicated. It’s based off on a human being, a majestic being, emperor. It complicates things. Those images are not scientific, but the Eastern image has never been confused. It’s always oneness. If you look at God that way, then quantum physics absolutely has proven it unequivocally without any debate because this is theory and experiment together, and who can debate it?
S: When you say oneness, I did learn about oneness in India. Oneness University, the spiritual practice of oneness, they’re at a small area, a small town outside of Chennai, and I went to the Oneness Campus back in 2013. I had a really profound experience there. My wife came with me and she had this out-of-body experience there with the Oneness monks, doing Deeksha on us and everything. It was really, really powerful. Is that the kind of oneness you’re talking about or just a more general kind?
A: The oneness just means one thing. They know what they’re talking about. Yes, that’s the oneness, beyond space and time, another domain of reality. However, you want to express it, non-locality or however you want to call it. The oneness is causally potent because this oneness chooses out of the potentiality what becomes actuality. Of course, if we live a very conditioned life, then we are not engaging with the oneness; we are just recapping what we already had experienced before so that’s our problem. You’d have to be creative in order to connect to the oneness.
S: Creative in what way? What would be your recommendation there?
A: Experiencing new things in the physical. That’s very hard. You’d have to go places like Mount Everest to discover new things in the physical. The much easier trip is to take a trip in the mind, in either feelings or thinking. There are practices that you can do. Meditation is the obvious one but meditation, if you look at it carefully, consists of four stages. It’s not just meditate on a word or thing like that, that is emphasized. There are dream meditations, contemplating. There is also being mediation. If you do this “do, be, do, be do,” in this alternative way, “do and be,” mix them up like that, then, alternatively, you’re processing in the conscious and you’re processing in the unconscious. This domain of potentiality is unconscious in us. By doing this clever way of “do, be, do, be, do,” we can actually basically take a quantum leap in this continuous transition which you’ll go from the ego, the conditioned self, into that quantum unity. Once you have done that, then you are, of course, completely convinced that there is oneness because you directly have experienced oneness. I once experienced it myself very, very profoundly. Other times, too, but not as profoundly as that one time.
S: Let’s hear about that time that was so profound for you and I’ll share my profound time which happened in India as well. You go first.
A: This is 1976. I am a little desperate because, in 1973, I had an experience of jealousy about other people. I went at a conference. I was a giving a talk but I was not pleased with my own performance. I was comparing and getting devastated because everybody in my recording was giving better talks, getting better reception, more attention. This jealousy continued all day and, in the evening, about 1 o’clock in the morning, I got so disgusted, I go outside of the room that I was in and the ocean air hits me. This thoughts comes: “Why do I live this way?” and this thought comes with a conviction that I don’t have to. I can live in another way, a much happier way, more integrative way, integrating my life and livelihood which was the main conflict I had. The physics that I was doing was not very meaningful to me. So I tried to find meaning in physics and, eventually, got into quantum physics but that came later. Initially, I was looking at spiritual traditions quite a bit because that’s one way of finding meaning. My childhood experience suggested that my father was a spiritual teacher so it all came back to me. I was doing a lot of meditation but this particular meditation I took up for seven whole days. Something happens I’ll burst, that kind of result. I did it with no limit in mind. On the seventh day, though, I was sitting in my office and I thought, “Okay, I need to work outside,” so I worked outside, still doing the meditation and the world opened up. The outcome that was the most interesting, though, the oneness was, of course, just momentary, more like, “Oh, it’s like that?” and then the aftermath was not momentary. This, I knew. This, I knew that this is very profound. This is something very significant. What I expected was inclusive love, what, in retrospect, I call inclusive love. I could not not love anyone. Everyone that came into my sphere, I was love and in love with that person. It was just wonderful to feel that way toward everybody.
That in-love-ness with everyone has been a goal ever since. Recently, I found some improvement of that goal so that is why I’m starting this Transformational Education University in Jaipur, India, which will teach people transformation in the quantum side because I think the quantum physics and using creativity, the process which you understand quantum physics perfectly makes things a lot simpler than the olden days where people meditated without knowing what they’re doing. They didn’t even know that, in doing this alternative doing and being, they are actually processing the unconscious and, in the process, having a creative quantum leap, and they have to manifest all these things they didn’t know; they were just doing it blindly. Today, we know the entire process and so therefore there’s no ambiguity. We can teach people what to do it. We can teach them by steps and this should be very helpful.
S: You said that there are four stages to the meditation? Is that right?
A: Four stages to the creative process. When people do often do meditation, they either “do” meditation which is like a mantra japa, which is they recite the mantra, a one-syllable world, again and again in their mind. That’s called concentration meditation. That’s a “do” meditation. There is also “be” meditation where you try to relax. For relaxation, also, there are many formulas, mindfulness as it’s called by some traditions, but it’s the same meditation. You watch whatever is going on in your internal awareness, which, of course, sadness itself, too. Eventually, your attention goes to the self and that’s where things begin to happen. It is both awareness and meditation on this subject. These two meditations, do and be, if we do this alternatively with an archetype in mind–this is very important, too. I had an archetype in mind. I was having the problem with love, a direct question of my life. My wife challenged me. She was not intellectual and, therefore, she could challenge me like that but if your love is all intellectual, learn to love with the heart. I had that challenge as well. Love was the object archetype that I chose without so much of conscious choosing, but that what was in the back of my mind very clearly. This is important. You have to have a question in your mind for which there is urgency to find an answer. That urgency is needed for creativity. All those were satisfied somehow and so the quantum leap happened. What happens in people who do meditation, they neither have a goal for meditation except that, “I want to feel better,” “I want to get rid of an old habit,” or, “I want to be just simply happy.” That’s not a good enough goal to create urgency. You have to have an exploration that has urgency in it. In Buddhism, stressed often is loving kindness, very similar to love that I have as an urgent goal. For them, it is loving kindness. How can I live in loving kindness with people? That is a very effective way to meditate. When you meditate on loving kindness in this alternative “do, be, do, be, do,” way, then quantum leaps can come. There is now neuroscience data that actually people get transformed. Their brain changes. There is no doubt that things happen when you meditate, when you are creative and you take quantum leaps and you transform.
S: I remember learning from the Oneness monks in India that the process of awakening is a permanent, biological change to your brain, and I found that quite fascinating. Let me quickly share with you my quantum leap experience, my big, profound awakening experience in India. Thank you for sharing yours, by the way, back in 1976. Mine was in 2012. I had never been to India before. This was on a Platinum Partner trip with Tony Robbins and his platinum partners, which were about 150 of us. We were in Udaipur and the Oneness monks were flown in near Chennai to Udaipur, and we were getting the Deeksha, the oneness blessing. I’d gotten Deeksha before but none this profound. This particular monk had a lot of spiritual energy. I’d never gotten touched by him before so when he gave me the Deeksha, I felt this sense of peace and connectedness to the creator and it was just so beautiful and profound. I was agnostic. I was a real geek and very scientific. I had a master’s in biochemistry and I was a computer geek and all that. I was very disconnected from the spiritual realm and even just the spiritual part of myself, my own being. When I had that Deeksha, I felt so connected. The oneness monks had explained that God, the divine, is an experience, not a belief, and that sounds good, but, boy, when you experience what that is, holy cow. That’s amazing. I went outside right after that Deeksha and I just remember the grasping, the most brilliant, brightest green I’d ever seen in my whole life. It was Technicolor, like a cartoon. My life’s never been the same since. It’s a permanent change to everything in my life, and so many gifts and so many blessings have come since then. I’m very, very grateful for that experience that I’d share that whole experience with you. Any connection there from what I’ve described to the “be, do, be, do” sort of process to getting a quantum leap?
A: There are spontaneous experiences, too. Creativity can happen without the process as well. What you had was this spontaneous experience. A very powerful transformation took place, obviously, from the Deeksha to you, and it spontaneously fell into what I called the quantum self. It’s as powerful as where one gets to the process. The process leads to a little more in the sense that because you had a question, like I had a question about love and I was shown that answer to the question: inclusive love was the answer for me. Then, the rest of my life, I’m still manifesting that answer, manifesting in my being, how to love everyone on earth, how to create a mind which is so open that anybody who comes into my sphere, I can love. That became a life’s journey. I don’t know how it will evolve in you but these things evolve in a certain way, and you have to be open. Eventually, it will follow the creative process because the creative process will leave similar answers, profound answers, to questions that you asked but experiential answers, not just intellectual answers. That’s really working. In the consciousness arena, Stephan, frankly, the intellect just falls very short because all the beautiful insights are all a little subtler than what we are familiar within materialist science. In here, things are very objective and so we need to be so subtle. There, in the consciousness arena, material is hopeless because material exists mostly in the macro, and macro-world is very classical, very Newtonian. We have to resort to the mind where there are feelings, there is thinking, meaning and there is archetypes to intuition. We have to eventually veer to the intuitive stuff, the archetypes. When we start exploring the archetypes, we really find that life becomes a kind of a different journey. I call it the journey in happiness and journey in intelligence. This is something that would be very surprising to a materialist mind because they cannot think of intelligence anything beyond the IQ. Of course, there is enormous intelligence in the realm of emotion, an enormous intelligence in the realm of meaning and, of course, supplemental intelligence that I have not talked about. Those are, too, available to us if we strive and if we become aware that these things are there. Today, we are so bound by materialist philosophy that we don’t even have awareness of these realms. We have to kind of re-enchant the world to bring back the awareness, and this is part of the reason that I’m establishing this Transformational Education University.
S: Let me give you a few minutes to describe what this university is going to be like, and when it’s launching, and who it’s going to serve, and all that. Could you show us in a bit?
A: Right now, we have only the first year fully planned because the rest of it depends on getting some permissions, a master’s from PhD, but we have plans for that. The first year is entirely – I will teach based on my research, based on my work, based on my wisdom, based on my meditations and all these. I and two associates, Doctor Ramona Valentina Onisor and Anil Sinha who is an Amtrak engineer and very good business plan, consults with businesses and also does business coaching, in general, also in meditation, has built a meditation laboratory in India. Valentina Onisor is a fantastic practitioner of spirituality. She is only 40 years old but so mature, spiritually. It’s amazing. She is a medical doctor, MD, but with a lot of training in all the alternative medicine. Basically, she does what she calls quantum-integrated medicine, and she also has made books and both Anil and she will be assisting me in this teaching. This teaching will be over two semesters. One starts in the fall this 31st August. We start the school in Jaipur, and continuing another 10 days in February – so10 days in September, 10 days in February and rest of the four and a half months of semester will be on the internet. So with proximity and internet the university will operate side by side with what we call a place for where people can live in the quantum way. We call it Quantum Village. This Quantum Village experience will continuously simultaneously grow along with the university so that people will have a place to put their findings, their research, their life on the right of the practicing block, and that would be very valuable part of the total experience as well. The way to find us is you can either look up my website which is amitgoswami.org or you can log directly onto the university’s website, which is quantumactivism.org. Both of these websites will have all these information. We’re calling the university Quantum Activism Vishwalayam. Vishwalayam means sum of the world. We really expect that students from all over the world will eventually come and get a hint of what transformation is about, what oneness is about, how transformation can help the world to solve its problems. Quantum physics is giving answers to every problem we have ever thought of. I wrote a book last year, published last year called Everything Answer Book and I really mean it. This quantum world-view is giving us answers in whichever direction. This university will grow around on three of the subjects that interest us mainly, which is healing, both physical and psychological and business and economics, and the third one is how to build a quantum society, about society. That’ll include arts and all the rest of it, education, politics and all the rest of it that it takes to build society. That’s the plan.
S: That’s amazing. Is that something that is open to anybody or is it for doctoral students or physics majors? Who’s the target audience for this university?
A: Target audience are professionals because we recognize that the marketplace, the way it is for jobs, this education right away will not help people find a cushy job, particularly. It’s more of an enriching the mind experience. Transformation is, today, a luxury. Only a few already have your job necessities satisfied, your survival is satisfied, then only you can think of transformation. We are mainly targeting it for professionals but we are very open. We are open to students as well who want to take a risk and we are very open to them. We will give them the best education that is available today. We claim that the education that you’ll get in higher education, almost all the places, they are totally meaningless, job-oriented or are oriented towards a kind of knowledge that is irrelevant for living life. For example, we don’t demean hard subjects like physics and chemistry. These are hard subjects, hard sciences and you really do something. You learn to do something, but you are doing things which are irrelevant, and that’s our point, irrelevant to your life, how you live. Our point is to interject thinking, living and livelihood. That’s the world the way I want to live, like, “Be the change that you want to be,” as Gandhi used to say, that kind of thing.
S: I wanted to go back to a concept that you touched on already and discusses further, the idea of an archetype. I first learned about the archetype from some study of Joseph Campbell and The Power of Myth. Is that the kind of archetype that you’re referring to?
A: Absolutely. I’m being very specific. Archetypes have various connotations because different people talk about it in slightly a different way, including Joseph Campbell who talked about it very well in the context of mythology, but the archetypes to me are platonic archetypes. I define nine fundamental archetypes that are important for the human being: love, truth, duty, justice, wholeness, goodness, power, abundance, and self. These nine archetypes, they are the main archetype that human beings have to learn, and life is a learning journey in the way that quantumology looks at life. All these archetypes, eventually, we investigate. There are two ways of investigating it. One is to take the archetypes as a whole. We study it as part of a whole. That’s the wholeness archetype. Then, the other way to do it is the traditional spiritual traditions, which is the self archetype. If you find that the self is grounded in unity and then lift that ground itself in unity, then, of course, all questions also disappear. You’d have the capacity to engage with any question. You can find the answer, of course, because you are in charge now in some sense of the unity consciousness but, on the other hand, what would you want to? Why do you want to? Because you no longer have an ego. That’s the way spiritual traditions have been. They have denigrated the world because when you get spiritually-enlightened, the world loses its charm. You are no longer attach to the world. We look at these things in a slightly different way. The world needs us. The world has huge problems because we have led the world’s lives to very odd, peculiar ways of thinking like scientific materialism. We are excluding the potentiality that can change us, that can change the human condition, that can change the level of happiness, that can really make us intelligent. Intelligence to us is to appropriately answer situations, and people cannot do that today. People always are doing the wrong thing. How to save the world from this wrongness that pervades the world, this negativity? This is a problem that cannot be solved by just doing the self archetype and escaping the world but being in the world so we have chosen the wholeness archetype instead of the self archetype. This is a sort of a different kind of enlightenment. I call it quantum enlightenment. It eventually leads to happiness almost as pervading as exploring the self archetype but, at the intelligence level, we emphasize supplemental intelligence. That is a very special thing. You remain in the world with complete appropriateness in your actions. Of course, people have come to that by just doing it. Mahatma Gandhi is a good example and Mother Teresa is another, but we now think that we really have the basics ready. We know the process. I think that we can guide our students to this exploration on the wholeness archetype much better than ever has been done.
S: This quantum enlightenment, how is this different than what people have heard of traditionally as enlightenment, escaping the birth, death and rebirth cycle over, and over, and over again, the reincarnation cycle that is hallmark in Hinduism and some other religions like I’m studying, Kabbalah, and reincarnation as a concept?
A: First of all, the deep spiritual traditions. Over these various incarnations, we come and explore the archetypes because exploration of archetypes is a lot of time. I don’t know if you remembered the movie Groundhog Day.
S: Yes, I liked that movie.
A: It was a fun movie. It was about the love archetype, and it very, very wonderfully depicted how difficult it is to discover love, that you have to give up your self-orientation to orientation for the other, and it takes a while to discover that because initially it just seems like worldly things, sexuality and that is all there is to it, and, “It should please me,” and that is all there is to it so the other does not even enter this very thick armor that we have that our ego creates. And so archetypal investigations take time. And so, with many incarnations and then to liberate yourself from all those incarnational journey is very tempting. Lots of people go that way, but I think that the careful study of the traditions that I have planned makes it very clear that there is a stage in which you have to enter. The stages, when you look at life itself as suffering, like Buddha’s first law. Buddha goes for Noble Truths and the first truth is life is suffering.Unequivocally, life is suffering, not that, “This is nice. This is pleasurable. This glass of wine would be nice, and that would please me, or this food, or this particular event of sexuality,” but no. All of life has lost all charm for you. When that happens, then if one escapes, then it’s fine. Others, the net result is living in happiness all the time. The question for quantum enlightenment is, “Okay, what is this state that you get that leads to a similar experience of happiness most of the time?” All the time is impossible, by the way, in the physical body, and these traditions make the distinction between liberation outside of the body and with the body. They realize that, yes, in the body where all is limited, you have to go to the bathroom. Let’s just be very practical. That tricks works the ego minimally and so it’s impossible to be totally liberated in the body, but that’s a minor distinction. The distinction between quantum enlightenment and the enlightenment of the mystics is very crucial, however. The enlightenment of the mystic is called God Realization. It would stay within the unconscious with the possibilities in a very non-attached way, and this kind of Samadhi experience is well-known in spiritual tradition. It’s called Nirvikalpa. I think in the Kabbalah, too, there is a similar concept. This Nirvikalpa Samadhi without any awareness, subject-object split, is a very interesting concept. Quantum physics explains it as an example of what we call delayed choice. I don’t think I’ll go into an explanation of that because that will take a while because, intellectually, it’s a challenging concept. This Nirvikalpa Samadhi is the way to live, most of the time. It’s a state of unconscious but it’s a different state than sleep. Sleep is where we are unconscious but we are into our personal unconscious so nothing much that is transformational can happen. But in this state of Nirvikalpa Samadhi, people go into what I call quantum unconscious, creative stuff. When they come out of that Samadhi, they are full of creativity. They are full of joy. They are full of absolute happiness that other people can feel. It’s a palpable happiness. I have been in the company of such people. I know. I do not, myself, envision that path so I do not see myself that I’ll ever have the need for Nirvikalpa Samadhi in this life, but I have been with people who had such experiences. They are wonderful people. They are happy people. A quantum enlightenment what we strive for, is we are so based in the exploration of the archetypes that we are always manifesting one archetype or another. Manifestation stirs up creativity as a wonderful experience that is called flow where you shift between the ego and the quantum self, the unity self. You are shifting between you and this universe of self that we all are. In that shift, there is always enormous joy. This flow experience is not completely unknown to people. We see athletes now doing it. We ourselves participate and employ it a lot of time in our childhood. In nature of work you can get into the flow. You had a flow with your teacher who gave you the Deeksha, and flow can take you into a Samadhi experience as well because it is very powerful. It is an encounter of the quantum self.
S: Now, is flow, the kind that you’re describing, the same flow that Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi has described in his book? I probably butchered his last name.
A: This wonderful psychologist discovered flow by himself also independently and he talks about it in his book very powerfully. He has devised experiments to find out, I guess, nuances about flow and his explanations. My explanations are somewhat different based on a quantum world-view, of course, but I have high regards for Mihaly. He has done very good work on flow.
S: Sorry, I interrupted you. Please proceed.
A: It’s okay. This is more experience. This is where the happiness level comes from for the quantum-enlightened person. Our direct society are very good examples. For Americans, you know the name of the boy, Walt Whitman?
A: Walt Whitman used to write like that, that 24 hours a day. “I don’t know what happens to me but, 24 hours a day, I feel happy and I enjoy.” This guy is kind of incorporating flow. In India, there is a boy named Rabindranath Tagore, he writes in a similar way, that, “I’m always in Ananda,” that’s the Sanskrit word for joy. There have been people who have lived in flow and this kind of quantum enlightenment and I think that, today, this is the right kind of enlightenment for people of the world because we don’t need too many of our most talented people to go into liberation from the world. We need people to stay in the world and serve the world as much as possible. This takes time. This is what’s called Bodhisattva in Buddhism. I think we need more Bodhisattvas who will promise to stay at the doors of liberation but will never actually go through the door to liberation.
S: My understanding of somebody who is a very elevated being and can liberate but chooses not to is, for example, my understanding of Amma, the Hugging Saint. She gives these mantras, and I’ve gotten hugs from her, and she’s amazing. When she gives a mantra to someone, she is bound to that person and their fate. If they have not liberated, she cannot liberate. Because she’s given mantras to millions of people, me included. Until we all liberate, she cannot liberate.
A: I think that is a good example of what I was talking about, this inclusive love. She loves everyone. Anybody who comes to her vicinity, she just loves them at that capacity. In Sanskrit, it is called Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, The World Becomes Family. For such people, the world is family. This is where she goes anywhere, little villages, big cities and everywhere. She hugs everyone. Whoever comes, she gives mantras. People can sit on her lap and they would feel like, “This is mother. This is love.”
S: Amazing. She is a very, very special person. Let’s circle back to some of the quantum physics concepts that we started with like Spooky Action at a Distance, the quantum entanglement in that. Let’s talk about the observer effect. The fact that you observe something actually changes, its nature, it collapses, a wave, for example, of light into individual photonic particles. How does the observer effect relate to spirituality?
A: Definitely, I think it’s important for the world-view and for spirituality. The observer effect is, as you said, is observation changes an object from possibility into actuality. The observer is crucial, and that’s how we know that this unity, the domain and separateness, domain where everything communicates instantly, that domain is consciousness because when that domain speaks up, that domain of unity becomes, too. What we have is an observer and observed, subject and object. It’s very important. That’s the beginning of the quantumology. That subject is quantum self and, when that subject becomes conditioned, we no longer have that feeling of caustic awareness. We become very individual, very separate, and this is why the separate self is called ego. And I necessarily centered that is more like a “me” rather than an “I”. In spirituality, it becomes very important because the whole journey is actually going from this observer-ship that we have, this very limited ego observer-ship versus that unlimited quantum observer-ship, the immediacy of the experience. In a way, what we are talking about this whole interview almost, Stephan, that is the orientation that you took and movement of consciousness moved us this way. What we’re talking about is precisely this journey. This is the spiritual journey. How do we move from this ego to that quantum self? You have to discover that eating and sex give us pleasure and, of course, negative emotions give us pleasure, too. Some people get their pleasure simply by dominating somebody else, but that’s really perverted. Eating makes sense and sex makes sense. They are necessities. They are survival necessities and they are also pleasure-ful, but that pleasure is a molecular pleasure, and this distinction is very important. There is another kind of pleasure. When we smile with someone, when we enjoy life with someone, it’s a different kind of pleasure. Why am I enjoying it? Because my consciousness has expanded. That expansion takes us momentarily towards the quantum self, and that is the expansion that we feel. As we become more and more interested into this kind of expansion that is also called happiness–in fact, this is very complementary to the pleasure kind of happiness. Pleasure is molecular and therefore very intense, but it’s very momentary, comes and goes, whereas this expansion of consciousness, if you are doing it often, it will stay with you. It is not something that would disappear. Your ability will just keep on increasing. As you increase this ability–meditation helps, creativity helps–that is the journey to fulfillment and that is the journey of achieving all of your potentiality. That is the journey of changing the negativity into positivity. That is the journey of happiness and intelligence that we have spent the hour talking about. This observer-ship begins everything. Observer-ship is the way that the world manifests. The world manifests because the unity splits up into an observer and an observed, and that is the beginning of the world.
S: When you were talking about expansion and how that leads to happiness, I saw a parallel there with what I’m learning in Kabbalah of the vessel. There is the light of the creator and then there is the vessel, us, our soul, which receives it, and the larger our vessel, the more of the creator’s light we can receive.
A: Exactly. That is the idea and how the attention eventually goes to the archetypes and then we are really enlarging. As we manifest these archetypes in our being, we become more expanded in a permanent sort of way. An expansion of consciousness happens. That will not go away. These have been verified, as I said. Neuroscience has made some very, very wonderful branches which enable us to measure brain specs from inside, not only from the scalp but also from the inside. fMRI, functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging, this method is so powerful that it enables us to measure states of consciousness directly, and we can see that there is a consciousness in the brain which is very localized, that is equivalent to the ego experience, and then there is a consciousness in the brain that is very non-local, that is all over the brain, working in synchrony. That’s what the action of the quantum self is. Indeed, the progression has been shown. Initially, we get some quantum self but mostly ego and then, gradually as we proceed in the transformational journey when we are totally established in it like the experiments that have been reported are about Tibetan Buddhists who have done loving kindness meditation for 40 years, and, indeed, their brain is totally changed. Their brain is full on gamma waves, high-frequency waves, higher than 35 hertz. These gamma waves dominate the brain waves, and that’s a signature of the fact that they have, very often, this brain oscillates in complete synchrony of interior sparks. That’s a tremendous finding, a tremendous verification of all these spiritual traditions, Tibetan, Kabbalah, Hindu, Buddhist, Christian, what have you. The mystical traditions are the right way to go. Stay away from the populous pictures of the religions. Religions are good as an initiation but, after that, you have to eventually grow up and come to the conclusion that God could not be as simplistic as an emperor in the sky. You come to the concept of divinity and then stick to it. Quantum worldview can take you there to the scientific path. Is scientific path necessary for everyone? No, I’m not saying that, but the scientific path will help everyone because of this experimental data that can verify this scientific path. At least be aware that science is making these advances. Science is no longer the old science, which are materialistic, but science is changing paradigm. It is coming to the quantum world-view, and these things are very much part of the reality of the scientists. Now, nobody can ignore data in science for very long so in another few decades, we’ll have the world-view change completed. It has already started.
S: The world-view, being like a permanent shift of consciousness and enlightenment of society, of humanity?
A: For humanity, it will take time, and the human condition unfortunately has the brain in a very peculiar situation of so much potentiality on one hand but the actual brain that we are born with has this ego building, this me-centeredness as a built-in mechanism. We have mechanisms in the brain which forces us into going into this constriction of consciousness. The brain needs to be changed in a more non-local way, and people start talking about it very much. I know a great scientist like Rupert Sheldrake has talked about it and many others. I also talk about it. I am more in tune with Rupert that way and I think, also, that, if a threshold is satisfied, if a certain number of us can transform and really transform in a non-local way, keep in touch with one another and share each other’s consciousness in our transformation, then this consciousness can be transferred into the brain of other people in the future. Namely, in the future, people will be born with these brain changes. Right now, you can change the brain and these great meditators’ brains have changed but nobody else takes advantage of the brain change. Can we do it in such a way that I change my brain and you change your brain and we do it together and things happen in such a way that, in the future, all brains shall be born with a lot of positivity which will balance the negativity out and spirituality is so much easier? I think that future is coming to us, and it will happen if we can start this process of transformation en masse. This is actually part of the idea of why I founded this university. We’ll try to build a society, mini-quantum society, where everybody will be connected with everyone else. In other words, we will have a sort of an entangled consciousness in that quantum village. Then, from there, we can proceed to make that net of entanglement like an Indra’s net in the Hindu mythology where it is visualized that everything is connected to everything else. Can we ever get all people connected on the earth like that? That, you can only imagine, but my guess is that if we can get even a percentage of people connected in this non-local way, we probably can perpetuate this in the future brains as biological inheritance.
S: That would be nice. One more question. Now, in Eastern philosophy, there are chakras and in Western medicine, that’s a very allopathic approach and it doesn’t seem to give validity or much credence to the Eastern approaches and chakras and Eastern medicine and that sort of thing. I’m curious if you can measure with imaging, like with functional MRI, chakras and maybe auras and so forth. Can you shed a little light on the possibility of scientifically-validating chakras and auras in that?
A: This is the second great advancement that has taken place in experimental research in the new paradigm, the measurement of vital energies. This is a 50-year old technology called Kirlian photography. We could measure with Kirlian photography but Kirlian photography is a little bit limited because you can most conveniently take photographs of only the fingertips because you have to put a place between two electrodes and it’s just not convenient without performing biopsy to measure the vital energy or the chakras that way. It would be invasive. How to do it? Now, the problem has been solved because bio-photon emission is also a way to measure the vital energies as a chakra. This, we can use chakra. As these measurements are getting better–I have a colleague in Bologna, Italy, Gioacchino Pagliaro, who is investigating this particular mission. Our guess is that, yes, we can measure the vital energies directly and the chakras to tell you whether this person’s heart is open or whether it’s closed. Our theory is that if the heart closes out, no love and it will be more cancer-prone. This may even have a practical application of detecting very early cancer. If we can directly measure the heart chakra and find the energy blocked, then you could very well be having cancer. Some preliminary measurements by an Indian doctor is showing that, indeed, bereaved women whose husband or child has died recently because they breathe excessively, that breathing closes off all love and that affects the immune system, it becomes non-functional and that produces breast cancer. There is already some indication that breast cancer may have to do with blocking love energy in the heart chakra. In this kind of way, there is not only a measure of enlightenment because for enlightened people, the heart should be open. We could take these measurements to someone like Amma, the hugging mother that you mentioned. Obviously, her heart is always open so it will be no question that you’ll get a very good reading, but it also is very telling for closing of the heart, which would lead to cancer. In both ways, we get huge applications of this bio-photon emission tomography.
S: Is that something that is readily-available? Could I go and sign up for a scan like that?
A: Not yet, but they’re coming in vogue. They’re not as ubiquitous yet as the Kirlian photography machine which is much more available but they also are costly. A Kirlian photography machine costs about $30,000-$40,000. These bio-photon emission machines should be cheaper. I’m looking forward to the day when I can afford one. This will be great for teaching people because they could watch their progress in terms of opening of the heart and, of course, eventually, what will be vector, I think, is the cancer detection because any type of cancer can be caused by the blockage of love in the heart chakra. Of course, the results of genetic and all that–I’m not saying all cancer is caused by this, but certainly, a substantial number of cancers are caused by immune system malfunctioning which can be caused by the blocking of vital energy in the heart.
S: My understanding of cancer is we all have cancer cells circulating through our circulatory system, and our immune system keeps that in check, kills off those cancer cells.
A: Absolutely. We can attack it in that way very effectively. I think that we just talked about this hour, this new science has new applications for worldly people in both directions. It can help with disease. It can help with mental disease, especially. It is revolutionizing therapy. In a few years, we will have all therapists using some of these creative processes that we talked about and, of course, it also is helping people to get up in the ladder of happiness, and that is a very, very important thing because if the world becomes full of happy people, I think some of these things, like work, will eventually go away.
S: Thank you so much, Amit, for sharing your brilliance, your wisdom, your inspiration and your science with us in this episode. If folks wanted to follow you to learn more from you, where would they go and even to maybe donate to your university? Where would you suggest they go to?
A: There are two websites: amitgoswami.org that’s my personal website and the website of the university is quantumactivism.org. Both of these will get our immediate attention and I respond eventually to all my emails effective inquiry. If the inquiry is trivial, of course, I don’t respond but, very seldom, people write that way to me.
S: Thank you so much. Listeners, now, I hope you all take some positive action and do something with this wonderful knowledge that you had just acquired in this episode. Now, there is also, on the Optimized Geek website, optimizedgeek.com, the transcript of this episode, the show notes with links to additional resources and an action item-based checklist of things that you can do based on the episodes. I encourage you to go to optimizedgeek.com for all that, and also to the two websites that Doctor Amit has shared with us.
A: Thank you, Stephan.
S: Thank you so much, Amit, and thank you, listeners. We’ll catch you on the next episode of The Optimized Geek. Great. Thank you so, so much.