Quantum mechanics and subjective experience.

Evgeny M. IVANOV

Department of Philosophy, Saratov State University

Astrahanskaja 83, Saratov 410071,



E-mail: ivanovem@info.sgu.ru.


KEYWORDS: subjective experience, quantum theory, mind-body problem, consciousness.


ABSTRACT: There is a deep analogy between quantum reality and subjective experience.

Such subjective properties as wholeness, temporal nonlocality, actual-potential structure of

subjective being, qualia, individuality have an analogues in quantum world.





L subject of the paper is a search for analogy between properties of human

subjectivity and quantum reality. Hypothesis of a consciousness quantum nature

is widely discussed now (Walker (1970), Bohm (1983), Penrose (1989), Stapp (1993), Globus

(1996), Hameroff & Penrose (1996), Sarfatti (1996)). We can select two main directions of


Some authors try to explain consciousness with the help of quantum physics.

Others, on the contrary, try to explain the subatomic world by introducing

consciousness (of observer) directly into the basis of the physical theory.

In this work we shall consider the quantum basis of consciousness and, thus,

this work can be related to the first direction.

However, as we shall see hereafter, the correct discussion of the question of

subjectivity and physical reality connection assumes the use of subjective experience

as the basis for an explanation of a quantum reality, but not the opposite.

The early attempts to explain consciousness on the basis of the quantum theory

often have two drawbacks. As a rule, there is no philosophical substantiation of

the possibility of physical and subjective collation and, besides, the authors

try to explain complex, high level forms of consciousness directly from the

first quantum theory principles. But even the man (to say nothing about the

quantum particle) is not always capable of thinking, perceiving, remembering,

understanding the environment keeping what we name "internal world" or

"subjectivity" (for example, in dream, at pathology of a brain etc.). If there is

an analogy between fundamental quantum properties of matter and subjective

sphere, it relates only to most general, formal, invariant to a level of

complexity human subjectivity properties. (Though, certainly, it is necessary

also to show that having achieved the certain organization level the quantum

systems will be able, in principle, to implement complex mental functions).

The term "subjectivity" will be used further as a generic notion for designation

of any phenomena of the internal world, irrespective of their complexity level.

From this point of view the consciousness should be considered as only one of

the subjective organization forms, described by such attributes as reflectivity,

usage of high-level abstractions, self-regulation, social-dependence of

subjective contents and the ways of mind functioning. But unconscious subjective

contents, having no listed attributes of consciousness also exist.

In this light, we see that it is reasonable firstly to search for the analogy

between quantum and subjective, instead of quantum and consciousness, that means

to take the subjective phenomenon into account, abstracting from specific human

content (i.e. informational and functional aspects of subjectivity, depending

evidently on external organization and can not be directly correlated with

fundamental physical properties).

The relations between "formal" (invariant) properties of human subjectivity and

fundamental physical objects properties are the main problem of this paper.




First of all, let us consider philosophical basis of the very possibility of

physical reality and subjective experience collation. As I understand it, the double-aspect

theory can serve as such base. This theory was suggested in initial form in the second

half of 19th century by G.T. Fechner.

In compressed form the main idea of the double-aspect theory may by expressed as

follows. It is confirmed, that subjectivity and at least some part of the brain is

one and the same thing. It is supposed that only subjectivity is an authentic

reality, that exists "in itself", while matter - is only the "image" or

"projection" of some other (not my) subjectivity. What exists in itself as

subjective experience, appears as the matter (stuff) in external observer's subjectivity.

The double-aspect theory is essentially distinct from the so-called functional

theories of mental, according to which the consciousness and subjective experience are an

internal aspect of "emergent" (high-level) function of a brain, but not a brain

itself. This theory is also distinct from "eliminative" theories, which deny

real existence of subjectivity as relatively closed in itself "internal world".

The fact, that having opened skull we do not find out in brain the "internal

model" of the environment, which is directly given to us in our subjective

experience, is explained in double-aspect theory by representative character of

sensual perception. It is supposed, that the sensory images are absolutely not

similar to the objects, as these objects exist "in itself", but between an image

and an object there is a relation which is close to isomorphism (one-to-one

structural correspondence). The latter guarantees adequacy of sensual perception

of the external world and ensures the possibility to act successfully in the

external world on the basis of a sensual image qualitatively distinct from this


According to this point of view, a brain, as I see it, is not identical to a

real brain, as it exists "in itself" and, therefore, it is quite admitted to

assume, that some part of a brain is really my subjectivity as it exists in


For example, if at this moment I see a room, my brain is, partly, (in itself)

this room and not an unattractive sort of jelly that the surgeon would see, if

he had opened my skull at this moment. Our sensual perception deforms a reality

so hardly, that the brain existing in itself as a visible room, can be seen from

outside as some sort of jelly. However, as this deformation has regular

character, we can adapt to it, and it does not prevent us to act adequately in

the external world.

This deformation concerns also spatial (and perhaps temporal) parameters of

external reality, otherwise we should have to admit existence of the exact (or

reduced) geometrical models of external objects in brain.

In initial variant (for example at Fechner) double-aspect approach was a variant

of the panpsychism. But we can avoid panpsychism if we assume, that the matter

beyond a brain, considered from its internal side, is similar to human

subjectivity only from the point of view of its formal properties, but is not

similar by contents or function. It means, that the matter outside brain has

neither thinking, nor perception or memory, at least in some highly advanced

form (as we do not always think, perceive, remember, but that does not deprive

us of subjectivity). There is no necessity to attribute human mental property to

some material objects beyond brain, even if they possess their internal world

similar to our internal world by their formal properties.

It is possible to assume, that the specific mental properties of human

subjectivity are not immanent properties, but are only emergent effect of its

external organization, induced by other brain structures, which are localized

beyond "my" subjective world.

The double-aspect theory is usually opposed to the functionalism. According to

functionalism consciousness is a high-level function of brain. From this point

of view consciousness corresponds not to a brain matter, but to what the brain

"makes". The high-level character of consciousness function means that the

consciousness corresponds to the function of the whole brain, but is not the

function of its separate elements. The latter has no any mental properties or


I consider, that the explanation of consciousness as a high-level function of

brain contains "arguing in a circle". On the one hand, subjectivity is explained

as a systemic property of matter, but on the other hand, the partition of the

world into a set of separate systems is carried out according to the

understanding of functional applicability of these systems, that supposes

understanding of such functional meaning of these systems that is specific for

the human being. Thus, it presupposes the existence of such mental phenomenon,

as (human) meaning, which in this case belongs to external objects and does not

depend on our consciousness.

Let's return to the double-aspect theory. The main problems of this theory

appear in an effort of its concretization, when we really try to present

physical matter as external manifestation of subjectivity. If matter (in its own

existence) is something like our subjectivity, then though it must not possess

consciousness or thinking, in a general event (since we are not always conscious

or thinking), at least it must possess such essential "formal" characteristics

of subjective experience, as wholeness, temporary depth (non-locality), qualitative

heterogeneity and specific dual "actual-potential" being form which we find in

our own subjectivity. Exactly these four particularities of subjectivity are the

main obstacles in our attempts to consider subjective experience as "internal" of the

matter. The brain matter is presented as something actual, disintegrating into

separate, comparatively autonomous elements (atoms), local in time and

qualitatively homogeneous.

However, all this is correct only in case, if we take the conceptions of

classical physics as the basis. Situation greatly changes if we take into

account understanding of matter which quantum mechanics gives. Here we find a

deep analogy of physical reality and subjective experience.

Before the investigation of this analogy, we must study in more detail above

mentioned main formal characteristics of subjectivity.




2.1. "Actual" and "potential" subjective phenomena


The subjective phenomena may be separated into three groups. The first group is

"actual" (sensual) subjective phenomena. The second group is volition and

emotions. And the third group is the meanings.

The actual phenomena are sensations, sensual images and mental images or

representations (memories, fantasies imaginations). The sensations and sensual

images are obvious, qualitatively certain, located more or less precisely in

subjective space and time contents of subjective experience. Mental images may not

have any part of qualities and not have exact spatial and temporal localization. The

actual phenomena can be described as a temporal "stream" of subjective events.

Meanings are given as tacit, uncertain, non-actual, non-spatial, timeless and

non-qualitative content of our subjectivity. The specificity of meaning is that it

simultaneously exists and not exists, is given and is not given to the subject,

is experienced and not experienced. We can not assert that meanings do not exist

at all, but we can not identify them with some certain content of our

experience. The meanings can not be identified neither with sensations, sensual

or mental images, nor with relations between actual sensations or images. The

meanings alongst desires, intentions or values are "supersensible" or "ideal"

contents of our consciousness.

Though the meanings do not show themselves in a certain form at the moment of

their experience, we can, if necessary, display some meaning (for example the

meaning of the word) in a sequence of mental images or use other words, also

having meaning, retrospectively.

If we investigate these displays, we can conclude, that the meaning occurs when

any actual experience comes into correlation with some part of our past

experience. However actually, in the obvious form this correlation or displaying

of meaning at the moment of its experience is not realized. Subjectively we

experience the meanings, for example meanings of the word, directly, not using

some images, fantasies or verbal descriptions.

We consider it to be possible to interpret nature of meaning using Aristotelian

categories "potential" and "actual" (or "possible" and "real"). If sensations,

images are actual, real contents of subjectivity, the meanings that subjectivity

contain as "pure potency" devoid an actual existence. Thus, the meanings are the

special potential form of being.

The potential being can be considered as something intermediate between actual

existence and nonexistence (existent nonexistence). It is the nonbeing, that

exists inside of being, nonbeing "pregnant" with being, containing being in

itself as a possibility.

The meaning as we have described it above, may be also described as some sort of

"existing nonexistence" - it simultaneously is present and is not present, is

experienced and is not experienced. For this reason we can explain the form of

being of meanings as ontologically available being of potency.

Every potency is a possibility of transition from one (available) actual being

to the other (possible) being (that can be transformed into actual form in

future) . Thus, the meanings exist as a set of possibilities of transition from

available sensual or mental experiences to possible ones.

From this point of view, the experience of some actual subjective element's

meaning is the experience of possibility of appearance of other (connected with

this actual element) actual experiences as well as experience of possibility of

other possibilities, as these other experiences also can have a meaning.

We have defined earlier that the meaning of some actual subjective element can

be understood as a result of collation of this element to the past experience.

The direct experience of meaning is, thus, an experience of a very possibility

of such collation, that is experience of a possibility of "scanning" some

fragments of past experience and comparison of the given actual element and

these fragments.

The experience of meaning of the word, from this point of view, is an experience

of the possibility to display this meaning in the sequence of mental images, in

other words, also possessing meanings and so on. The meaning of the world also

includes experience of possibility of behaviour acts which become possible in

connection with the given word. Thus, it is possible to say that the meaning of

a word is (partly) a set of potentially possible reactions on this word or a sat

of potentially possible directions of the given word usage.

It is clear, that the potential form of access to the past experience gives a

huge advantage to the consciousness, because the potential access to the

information, against actual access, allows "virtually" to look over through

unlimited information files for short time. Due to this the consciousness has

ability to parallel "virtual" processing of huge information contents and this

ability explains surprising efficiency of human mentality.

Above we have noted that the meaning is the experience of a very possibility of

other experiences and as these other experiences also have a meaning, it's the

experience of possibility of other possibilities. It means, that each concrete

meaning receives the defined contents through the relations to all other

meanings. But these other meanings also receive the certain contents through the

relations to the third meanings and so on. Thus, the meaning finds its

non-sensual definiteness inside the network or "field" of other meanings

(semantic field). This semantic field is a system of all interconnected meanings

and this system can be understood as human's cumulative knowledge about itself

and about the external world.

As the meaning exists as something certain only inside an integral semantic

field, the changes of meanings cannot be considered as a "stream" of isolated

meanings in which one collection of meanings replaces the other. The meaning's

dynamics can be considered only as modification of semantic field as a whole.

However, the meaning's dynamics, nevertheless, can be presented in certain

relation as consecutive replacement of different "semantic states". Indeed the

meanings can differ from each other at definite moments of time by their

readiness to actualization. Some meanings can be actualized at once, without any

additional conditions. These meanings form a "current semantic state". Other

meanings require the additional conditions for actualization. They form a

"semantic background". These "background meanings" can become a current semantic

state when some certain conditions will be executed.

Let's emphasize that we directly experience not only "surface" (current)

semantic state, but also all "deep" background semantic "layers". All contents

of semantic field as a whole are given to us every moment. Otherwise "surface"

meanings would lose their certain content.


2.2. Wholeness


We have established that our subjectivity contains two ontologically different

components in itself - actual and potential. Thus, we can define the form of

subjective being as "actual-potential".

Other important quality of subjectivity is wholeness. Our subjective sphere is not

a mechanical sum of independent parts or isolated areas. Just the opposite, it

exists as "integrated unity" in which it is only conditionally possible to

select some parts or divisions.

The wholeness of a sensual component of subjective experience can be described as

"Gestalt" properties of sensual images. The sensations, sensual qualities are

experienced not isolated from each other, but on the contrary, they create a special

whole form (image) in which sensations are experienced with relations between them.

The sensual images also exist not isolated from each other, but form a

integrated polymodal phenomenal "field of actual sensual experiences"

(so-called, perceptive field).

In semantic sphere we have a higher form of wholeness, than in sensual sphere.

It is partly explained by absence in semantic sphere of sensual space and time,

which in sensual sphere divide being into separate elements. The single meaning

is no more than abstraction. Only holistic semantic field is a unique authentic

reality. Each meaning receives the definiteness inside this field only through

the relations with all other meanings or, figuratively speaking, through the

"place" that it occupies in semantic field. Meanings penetrate each other and

mutually cause one another. (All is present in all, but, as Proclus said, in

everyone in a specific manner). Each meaning contains in itself or of

necessity supposes system of meanings as a whole.

Wholeness exists not only inside sensual and semantic spheres separately, but

these two ontologically different components of subjectivity also form "integrated

unity". The unity of sensual perception and meanings manifest itself

empirically, as direct meaningfulness of sensual images. As a rule, the meanings

are present in the images initially and directly. We find out ourselves inside

some semantic situation at once. Only in specific extreme conditions (presence

of interference, etc.), a perception partly splitting into pure sense datum and

meanings, secondary joined to it, is possible.

On the other hand, the meanings cannot exist "in itself", but only as meanings

of some sensual phenomena. Such close connection of sensual phenomena and

meanings follows from the given above explanation of meanings as "pure

potencies". As potency is a possibility of transition from one actual element to

another, the meanings can be defined as the "communications" between various

sensual phenomena, which are localized in different temporal layers of

subjective being.

It is possible to explain a unity of sensual phenomena and meanings in a

different way.

Let's notice that the actual experiences and meanings are essentially two

various forms of knowledge or information. The meaning is the information that

exists as "pure knowledge", deprived of some qualitative, spatial and temporal

form of its representation. The sensual experience is the information having the

form that sensual qualities, subjective space and time are constitute. The

content of the information does not depend on this form, because the same

information can be represented in various sensual forms. From this point of view

sensual images are meanings embodied in sensual form, and as meanings they are

integrated in a homogeneous semantic field.

If meanings are pure information, and sensual images are information having

qualitative, spatial and temporal form, mental images (memories, fantasies) are

something intermediate between meanings and sensual images. Mental images are

information only partially embodied in sensual (qualitative, spatial and

temporal) form.


2.3. Self


The most common form of unity and interrelation of sensations, sensual images,

mental images and meanings manifest itself as the belonging to unitary "self" or

"subject". From this point of view self is the factor providing unity of

subjective sphere. To explain the nature of self is the same as to explain, what

connects different single experiences in unitary whole, particularly, that

creates a supertemporal wholeness of sequential in time sensual states of our


Two different theories of a self nature exist (and accordingly two ways of

understanding nature of the factor creating unity of consciousness). According

to one of them ("transcendent" theory), self is something, that exists outside

consciousness, but by some not clear way it unites various sensual and

supersensible phenomena and, thus, creates wholeness of consciousness. Here, the

unity of consciousness is a result of "belonging" of various subjective

phenomena to this "transcendent" self. In this case self is a "pure look", in

front of which all various content of our internal life is displayed. As

"transcendent" self is not present directly in our internal mental life, it

displays itself only indirectly, as a condition making possible our knowledge by

creating a unity of our mental life.

However, some difficulties arise when we admit, that self is outside subjective

sphere. As self is only abstract "bearer" of subjective phenomena, totally

distinct from these phenomena, this self is absolutely uncognizable. I can know

that my self exist, but I can't know what is my self and how I am capable to

know about existence of my self. Let's note that absence of direct experience of

own self makes impossible to indicate any criteria of self-identity in time. As

self has no any observable properties, the replacement of "I" /"non-I" is

non-observable in principle, i.e. the loss of self-identity do not lead to any

observable consequences. Thus, the given theory comes to a conclusion, that the

existence of self and its identity in time can be only a subject of irrational

belief and can not be either proved or justified.

According to another ("immanent") theory, self and the subjective sphere is just

the same. My self is my subjective sphere taken in aspect of its integrity,

self-existence, self-perception, self-experience, self-representation. My own

self is totality of all my own experiences. If I experience some image - it

means that I am this image. From this point of view we can have at least partial

(aware, reflective) knowledge about own self, because all knowledge about own

subjective phenomenon is, from this point of view, knowledge about own self.

We noticed above, that both considered components of subjectivity - sensual

phenomena and meanings can be considered as two different forms of knowledge (or

information) existence. The meanings are a "pure knowledge" and images are

knowledge having the sensual form. If self is identical to subjective sphere, it

may be identified with a total knowledge constituting our subjectivity. (Of

course, we have not complete awareness of this knowledge, it's a mainly

non-reflective or "non-conscious itself" knowledge). Since a "transcendent" self

is denied, this knowledge (identical to the self) is "knowledge which knows

itself" (in irreflective form, of course). It is a knowledge which is identical

to its subject and to "I" possessing this knowledge.

The "immanent" theory has obvious advantages, as I think, and I will follow it

further. In particular, this theory allows to solve a problem of temporal

self-identity. But at first we should investigate temporary properties of

subjectivity in general.


2.4. Temporal nonlocality


The holistic being of subjective phenomena possesses a defenite certain

"temporal depth". Our actual experiences exist not as infinitely thin "temporal

layer" of being, but as a holistic formation, located within extensive temporal

area, in which sequential in time sensations and images coexist in united

experience. This temporal area is the "extended present".

The temporary depth of our "subjective present" allows us to perceive the

environment in dynamics, to perceive movement directly and other changes in time

as a directly given experienced reality. For direct experiencing movement it is

necessary to grasp in the unitary experience the present, past and future of a

moving object. It is possible only if our subjective "now" is something


If temporal depth of actual (sensual) experience is relatively not big (no more

than some seconds), the meanings have much more area of temporal nonlocality or

even considered as possessing unlimited temporal nonlocality.

Empirically supertemporal nature of meanings shows itself as ability to grasp

meaning of events, temporal extension of which outstands far the limits of the

sensually experienced present. For example, I am capable of grasping the meaning

of a movie or a book as a whole in the unitary act of my consciousness


From the theoretical point of view supertemporality of meanings is a consequence

of the described above wholeness of a semantic field, which is not decomposed on

isolated semantic units. As any meaning exists only in a context of the whole

complete system of individual meanings, it is possible only conditionally to

speak about current experience of meaning. In each actual state of consciousness

all individual meanings are presented as a "semantic horizon" (semantic

background), though at each moment in the specific "semantic perspective". The

meanings do not replace one another arising and destroying, but only their

actualization readiness is changed depending on a current state of sensual


Let's notice that the idea of supertemporal character of some deepest components

of a human soul is widely presented in various philosophical systems of the

past. According to the Plotinos doctrine, the fundamental components of our soul

are located "in Eternity" and identical to the World Mind. Kant also assumed the

existence of both temporal and supertemporal components of our subjective life.

According to Kant, the subject, as a "thing in itself", is located outside the

phenomenal world, only to which temporal form is applicable, as a priori form of

contemplation. According to A. Bergson, the human memory is direct access to the

past "through the time", instead of storage of traces of the past in the

present. The idea of supertemporal nature of our self was admitted widely in

Russian philosophy (L.M. Lopatin, N.O. Lossky, S.L. Frank).

The problem of temporal nonlocality of subjectivity is closely connected with a

problem of self-identity in time. Indeed, the unique method to be convinced that

my own self at present is the same as it was a year ago, is the direct moving to

the past for comparison of past and present self. Hence, if our intuitive belief

in identity of own self in time has any real basis, our subjectivity should have

ability of direct (through time) access to own past states, that is it has

unlimited temporal nonlocality. The "immanent" theory of self induces us to

search for a source of this nonlocality inside subjective sphere. It is

necessary to find out such non-local in time elements of our subjectivity that

would provide consecutive temporal states of our consciousness with real

comparability. As the sensations, images, volition, emotions are obviously

located in time, only meanings can have such unlimited temporal nonlocality. The

meanings in this case should be understood as the supertemporal relations

between the present, past and future sensual experiences. We must understand the

comparison of actual experience to the past experience, that is the mechanism of

meaning occurring, just as the direct access to the original past sensual states

of consciousness, that is a travel through time to the own subjective past,

instead of trivial comparison of actual experience with actual traces of the

past events. The meaning, from this point of view, is the past present in the

"now". The effect of comprehension is simply an effect of supertemporal unity of

the subjective sphere.

These supertemporal semantic communications connect ("stick together")

consecutive in time sensual states of consciousness and, thus, create what we

name "identity of our self in time". Both "actual" (in given moment of the time)

and temporal integrity of self is a semantic integrity - unity of meaning which

penetrates consecutive in time sensual states of consciousness.

From this point of view self is a subjective sphere considered in aspect of its

supertemporal unity. Our self does not correspond to the current present state

of consciousness, but it corresponds to the whole temporal sequence of such

states, connected by integral meaning. It's incorrect to speak about self as

about something existing "now" or to speak about the current state of self. Self

is beyond of "time stream", it is something "time-embracing" and it includes

subjective "now" only as an element.

Integral meaning connecting consecutive states of consciousness is possible to

define as the real "person". This means that self and person are the same.

Identification of self and real (empirical) person derives, however, the hard

problem. On the one hand, my self is something constant, identical in time, but,

on the other hand, as identical to the person, my self should be changed,

develop. The solving of this problem, as I believe, is an identification of self

with a certain "abstract idea". This means that my self is not only real,

empirical person, but also is all possible (virtual) persons, which should arise

on the basis of given self under various circumstances. Indeed, if I had not

written this article, I should have gone for a walk or read the book and it

would result in some change of my person. But the identity of my self,

apparently, will not be lost. Hence, the identity of self is compatible with

different (but not by everything) variations of the person. If we, taking it

into account, want to save understanding of self as quite certain information

contents, we must admit that all these allowable variations of the person are

initially included in structure of my self. They are located in my self in any

implicit form. Thus, we draw a conclusion, that self is identical not to the

empirical person, but to, probably infinite, stationary structure - to a "bunch"

of the "virtual persons". This "bunch of the virtual person" may be understood

as an abstract idea of a given concrete and indefinitely various in its possible

embodiments, spiritual individuality. Thus, our self exists mainly in the "world

of possibilities" (the world of potencies) and only a small part is present in

the actual, sensual, spatial and temporal world. For this reason we continue to

exist as a same person after coma, sleeping without dreams and other states of

subjective non-existence. In these states we have no any actual life, but we

continue to exist as a pure potency, as a pure spiritual entity capable to new



2.5. Qualia


One of the most important formal properties of subjective sphere is a

qualitative character of distinctions between sensual modalities and sensual

experiences inside modality. Let's note, that qualitativeness, (the qualitative

heterogeneity) is only a property of sensual experiences. The meanings are

deprived of qualia. The idea of "red" is not red and the idea of "cold" is not

cold, etc.. The volition and emotional phenomena also, I believe, are deprived

of qualia.

If the meanings are qualitativeless, they can differ from each other obviously

only quantitatively. Hence it is possible to conclude that the semantic

structures can be adequately described as mathematical structures and that

semantic universe (the world of "pure meanings") is the mathematical universe.

This hypothesis, as I believe, is confirmed by a successful computer modeling of





Such phenomena as acts of will, desire, aspiration, intention, evaluations,

emotional experiences (such as fear, anger, love etc.), ethical and aesthetic

experiences, such mental states as confidence and other similar phenomena as

well as sensations, images and meanings are components of our subjective being.

What ontological status has these phenomena? How do they correspond with other

phenomena of subjective sphere? What is their specificity? It is clear, that

neither the volition, nor the emotional phenomena are identical to any

sensations or images, though they can be accompanied by any specific sensual

experiences. Even pain is not identical to pure pain sensation. It is known that

patients with disfunction of the frontal lobes can feel pain, but even strong

pain does not cause them anxiety or suffering. It is obvious, that something

supersensible joins to pure sensation of pain, when pain become an emotional

experience. The same is possible to assert concerning other emotions as well as

will phenomena. For example, intention can be accompanied with planned actions

image. However, these actions can be imagined without any real intention to

carry out them. Fear is not identical to specific sensations in legs, stomach

and other parts of a body. Thus, the emotions and volition (as well as

evaluations, confidence etc.) are the supersensible phenomena. Can we identify

them with meanings? Or can we assert that it is a pain meaning that joining to

sensation of pain makes it emotional experience?

We have defined meanings as "pure knowledge" (or information). Obviously to know

what pain is and to suffer from pain is not the same. It's not the same to love

and to know what love is, to fear and to know what fear is. Thus, if love, fear,

suffering, desire are meanings, they are highly specific meanings. They express

not only knowledge about any situation (the potencies that this situation has),

but also subject's attitudes to the situation. These attitudes can be identified

with subject's readiness to act in this situation in a certain way. A real will

act is realization of this readiness. Love, fear, desire, rage etc. are distinct

from "pure knowledge" by experience of certain potential readiness to act in

situations which correspond to these mental states in a specific way. This

readiness, however, may be delayed on an indefinite period until some

circumstance take place. Therefore, I can get a fright, i.e. to experience the

readiness to run away, but actually not to run. Some readiness to act may not be

realized at all if it is blocked by some other readiness.

The meanings, into which some readiness to act in a certain way is integrated,

may be named as "personal meanings". My personal meaning of a situation has to

change if I change my readiness to act in a specific way in this situation. But

impersonal, "objective" meaning of situations may include a big set of

alternative allowable behavioural directions. These possible behavioural lines

are important part of "objective" meaning of the situation. The "objective"

meaning becomes the "personal" one, when a person makes a choice of a certain

behavioural direction. The subject may be aware of this choice and may control

it and in this case we have volition. If this choice is not aware and controlled

by the person - we deal with emotion. Thus, the existence of volition and

emotions demands the reduction of "objective" behavioural potencies set to some

single potency. This reduction (or choice) is of great importance for a proper

understanding not only of will and emotions, but for understanding of

individuality nature.

The choice realize depends on our individuality (self), and, on the contrary, we

may say, that our individuality is nothing but the complete system of such

choices, related to endless set of all possible situations. Indeed, if you and I

have equal external and internal situations (equal states of external world and

our bodies) and, in spite of this, we make different choices, it is only our

self that may create this difference. If self and subjectivity are the same,

then our individuality must be determined wholly by specific actual and

potential content of our subjectivity. But this content depends on real and

potential choices that we make, or might make, or will be able to make. Infinite

set of choices potencies of a "behavioural line" in all of possible external and

internal situations are the authentic "source" of our self, that creates a

unique "bunch of virtual person".

Thus, will and emotions are the only "channel" through which our unique

individuality can display itself.




Now let's investigate relations between our internal world and external reality.

Firstly the subjectivity was described as something closed in itself, as a sphere

separated from the rest of the world. It is means that I have direct access only

to my own consciousness content, but I have not direct contacts with reality

beyond my consciousness. Moreover, the possibility of access to my consciousness

from outside is denied too. Is this view correct? As philosophical

investigations done during last two hundred years convincingly showed, this view

is not quite correct.

If our consciousness is quite separated from the other world not only "direct

grasping" of external things is impossible, but even any thought about reality

outside our internal being is impossible. Such question as: "does something

exist outside my consciousness?" could not even come into a head to anybody. But

this question comes and has been hotly discussed.

On the other hand, it is obvious, that my self is really separated in some kind

from the rest of the world. For example, my consciousness is separated from

other consciousness - I could not "feel" about what the other people are

thinking now, or what they are seeing or hearing. As our "private being" is not

illusion, but a real fact, we must take it into account.

The acceptable decision of "transcendent object's problem" was found as far back

as Antique philosophy (Plato, Neo-Platonism). In modern philosophy Hegel had the

same opinion. According to this decision the subjective sphere has the

multi-layer structure. Our consciousness is separated from the external world

only on sensual layer, but not separated on semantic layer. This means that we

perceive not the authentic being of external things, but only their subjective

representations (subjective images). On the contrary, our thinking is quite

objective - we think not "own subjective thoughts", but real, authentic things.

Our thinking is not representative and it may be defined as "direct grasping of

external, transsubjective reality". But this "external reality" is not physical,

spatial and temporal world, but it is supersensible world of potencies. This

world is real, but not actual. It has not got qualia or spatial and temporal


This supersensible transsubjective reality is sphere of "pure thinking" ("Noetic

world"). The elements of this reality are "pure objective meanings", which can

be defined as "objective potencies". This "Noetic world" is a potential

"background" of actual, spatial and temporal world. According to this point of

view, the idea of "transcendent reality" in our mind is identical to this

reality. Not we think about transcendent world, but this world "thinks itself"

in our mind. In this sphere we can possess the universal and apodictical

knowledge, because in this sphere thought and its subject are identical. We have

direct access to this reality in our "pure" mathematical and logical thinking.

(E.Husserl (1962) was one of those modern philosophers, who insisted on transsubjective

status of mathematical and logical entities (see also Popper (1972))).

According to this, a volition is such an element of our subjectivity, which

bridges individual actual (sensual) layer of subjective being with

transsubjective "Noetic world", because it is will, that makes the choice what

potencies (meanings) must be actualized (as a sensual events). Subjective

meanings are the same objective meanings, connected with volitional and

emotional "readiness to act in a certain way" in specific situations. Thus, will

(and emotions) is third (intermediate) layer of subjective being and our self

(individuality) comes into being exactly in this layer.

If this point of view is correct, we must admit that our subjective being is

rooted into transsubjective "Noetic world" and we must take this into account,

when we try to solve the mind-body problem.





Let's return to the analogy of quantum reality and subjective experience. First of all,

we should note that this analogy follows already from the very basis of the double-aspect

theory. Indeed, the double-aspect theory defines subjectivity as "thing-in- itself

", i.e. as a "substratum" of matter or its authentic being, beyond which there

is no other reality, visibility or external manifestation of which would be our

subjective sphere. Hence, if we want to find out physical analogues of the

basic properties of subjective sphere, we should concentrate at the most

fundamental level of matter description, i.e. at such level, "beyond" which

there is no any "deeper", more fundamental reality.

Quantum physics and quantum mechanics just pretend to such status of fundamental

description of matter. It is supposed, that classical physics gives us only

"rough", not exact description of reality, and, thus, it cannot be correlated

with subjectivity directly.

However, can we be sure, that quantum theory really gives us "final", exact and

exhaustive picture of reality? I believe that we have important proofs that here

we really reach such a final description. First of all, the failures of numerous

attempts to give fuller and more exact description of physical reality using

"hidden variables" can be such an argument. "Hidden variables " are such latent

"mechanisms", which, as it is believed, could explain the observable quantum

behaviour, from the point of view of "deeper" level of reality.

As J. von Neumann showed, the impossibility of "hidden variables" introduction

into quantum theory has a character of basic principle. It is impossible to

introduce any "deeper" determinants of quantum behaviour into quantum mechanics

without destroying its mathematical structure and without conflicting with the

observable facts. Recent researches, connected with Bell-inequalities

verification, have confirmed this point of view by excluding, at least,

existence of so-called "local" "hidden variables".

It is clear that the impossibility of "hidden variables" introduction does not

prove "final" character of the quantum description, because there is an

opportunity of the quantum theory replacement by any other theory, based wholly

on different principles. However, if we assume that the "final" theory is

created, obviously, it, should exclude an opportunity of introduction of any

sort of "hidden variables". The quantum mechanics has such property.

It is possible naturally to explain many strange peculiarities of quantum

mechanics (absence of "quantum jumps " "mechanisms", spontaneous of quantum

objects behaviour and other) supposing the "final" character of quantum

description, otherwise we have not any explanation of this peculiarities.

However, the "final" character of quantum description does not mean its absolute

completeness. As we shall see further, the quantum mechanics is not complete, in

some sense, because reality is not exhausted by that " layer of being", which

the quantum mechanics directly describes. "Finality" in such case means only

that, at first, the "gaps", which exist in the quantum description, cannot be

filled, or their filling requires outstanding the limits of applicability of

purely quantitative, mathematical methods of the reality description. This means

that the quantum mechanics is neither complete, nor is "the theory of

everything" and it cannot be made complete with help of traditional ways. We

cannot hope, that by substitution for the Schrodinger's equation or its

analogues for more complex, for example, nonlinear, equation, we should receive

the best approximation of reality. Von Neumann's results show, that the layer,

which quantum mechanics directly describes, is described with maximum

completeness. It means that we must exclude any "hidden mechanisms " or any

"depth", "beyond" that reality which the mathematical formulas of quantum

mechanics directly represents.

Thus, the quantum mechanics, as I believe, describes reality with utmost

completeness, but outside this description yet some irrational "the rest"

remains, which, however, it is impossible to consider as "mechanism" or as

"hidden essence " of quantum objects.

Here we can point out the first analogy of quantum and subjective reality - we find

out in both cases the absence of any "depth" or "mechanisms" which are beyond the

observable phenomena. (The basic methodological principle, to that W. Heisenberg

was guided, when he created "matrix mechanics ", was the requirement to exclude

all non-observable entities from the theory). Like processes in our

consciousness, the quantum processes proceed "spontaneously", i.e. without any

internal "mechanisms".

The idea of existence of a "fundamental" level of the description often is

rejected proceeding from a potency of creation of more fundamental description

of a reality by means of unlimited increasing of sensibility of measurements. By

means of sensibility increasing of measurements, we consecutively "open" more

and more deep "layers" of reality and only necessity of extremely large energy

use to consider small details of matter's structure can put an end to this

progress. It is important, that "opening" of new "layer" of reality, as a rule,

requires essential theory correction.

This circumstance results in the following paradox: on the one hand, we know

that our brain "actually" consists of quarks and leptons and, hence, if the

double-aspect theory is right, we must admit that when we describe our

consciousness experience we simultaneously describe authentic being of these

quarks and leptons. However, on the other hand, we know, that, for example,

quark's structure of matter may be displayed only in high-energy interactions,

which, obviously, are inaccessible to biological systems. Hence, when we

describe properties of our subjective phenomenon - we describe such properties

of brain's matter, which we, as being the biological systems, are not capable to

find out without complex physical devices.

It is possible to solve this paradox, if we take into account dependence of the

existence form of quantum objects on character of measurements. According to

classical (M. Bohrn's) interpretation of quantum state, a quantum object has not

any certain actual being out of measurement, and it exists in this case only as

set of "pure potencies", i.e. as possibilities of detection some certain

observable properties in appropriate measurement. We can not attribute to

quantum object certain (let's even unknown) spin, impulse or coordinate - until

appropriate measurement will be performed. The measurement not simply reveals

preexist characteristics of quantum object, but, on the contrary, it creates

them at the moment of measuring interaction.

Thus, the quark's properties of matter do not show themselves in our actual

experiences, because "measurements" inside brain are such, that do not reveal

these properties and, hence, according to the quantum mechanics ideology, we

must admit that these properties, until appropriate measurement is performed,

are not simply "latent" , but they have not any actual existence at all. They

exist only as "pure potencies" - until the measurement with energy-suitable

parameters will be carried out.

Taking into account this specific quantum principle of "nonexistence (or

existence only as "pure potency") of non-observable" (in particular, the

non-observable properties of quantum objects), it is possible also to explain

the subjective sphere wholeness. From the double-aspect theory follows

paradoxical character of "integrated unity " of subjectivity. Indeed, if physical

is only an "external manifestation" of subjective experience, and if subjectivity

has such form of unity, that it can not be represented as mechanical sum of any

independent parts, it is absolutely incomprehensible how the "grain" (atomic)

structure of the part of our brain, which corresponds to our subjective sphere,

arises. It is possible to explain the absence of matter-like "granularity" in

subjective sphere using conception of "quantum holism" or "individuality" (term

of N. Bohr) of quantum many-particle systems. According to this conception, the

complex (compound) quantum system (such as atom, the molecule and etc.) shows

itself as a unit in all cases, until it come into interaction with such

measuring apparatus that is capable to distinguish its separate elements and to

fix individual properties of these elements.

If such measurements are performed, the quantum many-particle object passes from

"integrated" state to a state "composed of parts" and these states can have

highly different properties. Thus, it is possible, to speak about some sort of

complementarity of the "system-like" and "unit-like" states of quantum objects.

If we accept the principle of " nonexistence of non-observable", we must also

admit that if "measurement" which is carried out inside a brain, is performed in

such a manner, that separate particles, which constitute ("in potentia") the

hypothetical material substratum of subjectivity, do not manifest themselves ("in

actu") as actually separated entities, these substratum (in itself) really does

not exist as "having any parts", but it exists as real wholeness. For this

reason we don't "feel" any atomic "granularity" in our actual subjective experience.

We can suppose that matter substratum of consciousness is a many-particle

quantum system. But if different particles are not observed as really separated

from each other objects, we can not affirm that these particles really exist as

individual, self-identical objects. Thus, "measurement" in a brain must be

performed in such a manner that, though it may reveal complex space-time or

energy structures of a hypothetical quantum substratum of subjective, it must

not identify the contribution of each individual particle to a result of this


Apparently, a sufficient condition of quantum wholeness "disintegration" is such

character of measurement with which an opportunity to identify each particle (or

any sub-set of particles) as separated, self-identical object, which may

interact with external world irrespectively of other particles, arise.




Sufficiently clear analogy is tracked between described above "actual-potential"

structure of subjectivity and "actual-potential" being of quantum objects. The

latter reveals itself in dualism of quantum states (which are interpreted as a

set of "pure potencies") and quantum observables (which are possible to

understand as actualized potencies).

As far as we have ascertained above the possibility to interpret meanings as

"pure potencies", it would be natural to compare semantic dimension of

subjectivity with quantum states before the measurement (or with non-observed part

of quantum system), while "actual" (sensual) subjective experiences are

naturally correlated with the results of process of actualization of quantum

states in measuring interactions.

Thus, duality of actual experience and meanings corresponds to duality of

quantum observables and quantum states. Quantum observables are congenial to

actual experiences (sensuality) as both exist in a form of "stream of events"

and have certain spatial and temporal properties.

From this point of view wave function (state-vector), as a representation of

quantum potencies, describes supersensible entities congenial to Plato's "ideas"

by its nature. (It describes not only potencies, but also their "readiness to

actualization"). Plato's "ideas" are, in essence, "pure knowledge" existing

without any material substratum. Quantum potencies, as I think, have the same

ontological status. These potencies are identical to our knowledge about quantum

object states. However, this knowledge exists not only in our mind, but also

beyond it, as "objective reality".

The main difference of our approach from traditional Platonism is that we don't

accept "naive" version of this theory, i.e. we don't consider such "ideas" like

Plato's "tableness", "chairness" or "horseness" as objective reality. But we

suppose objective existence of "non-naive" (hidden, non-anthropomorphic) "ideas"

which can be "grasped", as I think, only in scientific (mathematical) knowledge.

As we shall see further, these "ideas" can be identified with the senses of

mathematical formulas of contemporary physical theories.

The role of such "non-naive" "ideas" matches most quantum "waves of probability"

described by wave function. Indeed, "quantum waves" are really something

"supersensible" (it's impossible to "see" or directly register them), these

waves, as we shall see further, are not localized in space and time and they

appear only as theoretical constructions (i.e. they exist as "noumenal"

reality). Nevertheless, quantum waves are not only our mental constructions.

They exist in external world as something real, ontologically available.





The important property of subjectivity is temporal non-locality of subjective

being. This property is often considered as the reason for refusal from any

comparisons of matter and subjective experience. Indeed, we may describe changing of

atomic states taking into account such time intervals as 10-23 sec. (for processes

inside atomic nucleus). On the contrary, in our sensual subjective experience

the minimal time interval, which we yet are able to "feel" directly - is about

10-1 sec. If subjective experience is "internal being" of matter, and if matter can have

real dynamics on time intervals, much less then these we are able to

distinguish, the question arises: why don't we "feel" micro-time dynamics of our

subjective states? If matter is only "external manifestation" of subjective

being, the micro-time dynamics of physical states of our brain (or such part of

brain that directly corresponds to subjectivity) can exist only as "projection" or

"manifestation" of micro-time dynamics of subjective states. But we don't

experience such dynamics. Thus, we should draw a conclusion that our

subjectivity and matter exist in different temporal scales and, thus, we can not

acknowledge matter should be considered as "external manifestation" of


We can solve this paradox without refusing of double-aspect theory, taking into

account the above offered interpretation of actual subjective experiences as

observable part of some quantum system. If actual (sensual) experiences

correspond to results of measurements, the properties of these experiences

should correspond to some parameters of measurement procedure, i.e. these

properties should depend on what and with what preciseness quantum objects are

measured. Taking this into account, it is possible to draw a conclusion that if

we do not get any information about changing of quantum object states, we can

not assert that some real changing or "current of events" in this object takes


We can get any information about changing of quantum state only if we perform

the measurement. Therefore, it would be natural to assume that if measurement is

not performed at all, the internal "current of time" (states dynamics) is

completely absent. If the measurement is carried out with period T, this period

determines such temporal interval, inside which all successive subjective events

are experienced simultaneously. Thus, this interval set the scale of subjective

"now". It means that an interval doesn't exist for a subject, if it is smaller

then T. In general, we may correspond to the scale of subjective "now" the

preciseness of time interval's measurements (resolution time), which are

performed in our brain. If our brain can not distinguish time intervals smaller

then T, we won't be able to any experience temporal intervals of such kind.

If preciseness of time intervals measurement in our brain is changed, the

temporal scale of our subjective experience should be changed too. Thus, this

model allows us to explain such subjective phenomenon as difference in scale of

subjective "now" in different sensual modalities or varying of subjective "time

current" speed (that occur in pathology).

Someone may object to me and note that quantum mechanics allows us to describe

changes of quantum states on infinitesimal time intervals without any reference

to measurements, since state-vector continuously depends on time variable.

If we accept, that wave function describes only "pure potencies", i.e.

probabilities to get some results of measurement in a certain moment of time, if

the measurement is really performed at this moment, we should also accept that

time dynamics of wave function is not a real process of changing of any actual

entities, but only redistribution of potencies, which have existence only

relative to measurement. This redistribution does not "occur" at certain moments

of time and it can not be localized in space and time continuums. As we shall

see further, time variable "t", on which wave function depends, describes not

the time that we directly experience in our consciousness as "stream of events",

but it describes non-temporal entity that philosophers name "Eternity" - fixed,

space-like, dispossessed of becoming, supersensible "prototype" of subjective

"flowing" time. "Eternity" is quasi-temporal modus of being in which meanings


As some quantum experiments show (Costa de Beauregard (1977)), the "internal"

time of quantum objects (temporal extent between measurements) radically differs

from "external" time in which quantum object shows itself in observer's subjective


In particular, as experiments with "delayed choice" show us, quantum particles may

have "pre-cognition" concerning the character of a future measurement and change

its behaviour beforehand according to this "pre-cognition". We can explain these

results if we accept that there are no any actual "changing of states" in time

intervals between measurements. Non-observed quantum object has not any temporal

dynamics that we may imagine as irreversible replacement of each actual state by

the following one. Consecutive states coexist, "feel" each other and are capable

to influence each other both in direct and in the reverse temporal order. For

this quantum object there are not divisions of temporal extent on the past, the

present and the future. Only the extended the present exists, which embraces

everything taking place between measurements.

Thus, we may accept that unobservable quantum "processes" which take place

between preparation of initial quantum state and measurement have only imaginary

character. There is no any real movement, even of potencies, in this interval.

That actually takes place is direct supertemporal communication between

observable events connected with both the preparation of a initial state and the

measurement of a final state.

These conclusions confirm our thesis that meanings, being correlates of an

unobservable part of quantum system, exist as supertemporal communications

between the present, the past and the future subjective events (which correspond

to results of measurement). From this follows that it is possible to identify

human memory content with "quantum information" which quantum states can store

in potential form.




One more subjective property which apparently distinguishes subjective being

from matter is a qualia. Let's emphasize, that only sensual phenomenon (such as

sensations, images) has qualia. Representations can be deprived of some part of

qualia. The meanings are utterly deprived of qualia. Above we connected the

distinctions between sensual experience and meanings with measurement.

Measurement "transform" supersensible meanings into sensual form connecting

"pure" information with sensual qualia and giving them certain spatial and

temporal properties.

Taking this into account, now we can give an answer to the question: why is

matter represented as something unqualitative ("pure extent", according to

Descartes) from the physical point of view, whereas in our subjective experience

matter (of brain), on the contrary, demonstrates diversity of modal specific

sensual qualia (according to double-aspect solution of mind-body problem).

In quantum case, unqualitativeness of matter manifests in that the basic

equation of quantum mechanics - Schrodinger equation, as well as its

relativistic analogs, comprises the minimum of qualitatively heterogeneous

parameters (spatial coordinates, time, the mass). The implementation of program

of reducing physics to geometry, can reduce these parameters only to special and

temporal coordinates. But even if it will not happen, it is obvious, that

physical "qualia" known now are not sufficient to explain all the spectrum of

sensual qualia.

Let's notice further, that the Schrodinger equation describes only state-vector

evolution and, therefore, it describes only evolution of "pure potencies", i.e.

according to our conception, in brain's case, it describes only semantic

component of our subjectivity, which is also unqualitative and can be

interpreted as "pure information" deprived of any sensual, spatial and temporal

properties. Only actual (sensual) components of subjective experience have qualia.

But these components we have connected with the process of measurement , which not

described by Schrodinger equation (as von Neumann has shown).

Thus, unqualitativeness of physical description is possible to explain

proceeding from the fact that physics can "grasp" only "supersensible"

(semantic, potential) components of being, and doesn't provide us with any

description on that unique process (actualization, measurement) which just

creates qualia and other forms of sensual representation of information.

According to this, it becomes clear why all attempts to create the mathematical

description of measurement in quantum mechanics were so unsuccessful. It is

impossible to do in principle - by virtue of qualitative, irreducible to pure

quantitative description nature of actualization and actual being. Hence, the

description of the world can not be completely mathematized, i.e. reduced to

some fundamental set of equations.

Next question arises: what are "physical correlates" of distinctions between

sensual modalities and sensual qualia inside sensual modalities. As we

correspond sensual experience to measurement, it is natural to suppose that

intermodal and intramodal qualitative distinctions depend on distinction in

methods of measurement implementation.

At least, it is clear, that a close connection between qualia and parameters of

measurement should exist: qualia should correspond to "classification states" of

measuring device (in our brain). (If qualia do not correspond to such

"classification states", it is obvious, that we could not just speak about

qualia - because any information about our subjective states can be accessible

for external observers only by means of measurements, which our brain performs

at quantum substratum of consciousness). We can suppose that qualia arise in our

brain when measurement gives information about distinctions between states of

this quantum substratum, but it can not give quantitative characteristic of

these distinctions. This means that qualitative character of experience

corresponds to the loss in the process of measurement information about

quantitative distinctions of quantum states of hypothetical physical substratum

of our consciousness. Indeed, if there are no quantitative distinctions, we

inevitably get qualitative distinctions. According to principle of "non-existing

of non-observable", if quantitative distinctions do not display themselves in

measurement, they don't exist at all (in actual being), but, nevertheless,

qualitative distinctions can exist.




If we want to prolong analogy of physical world and subjective experience, an

interpretation of phenomenon of individuality the next step should be.

The world of subjective being is not a homogeneous unity. On the contrary it is

divided in to the separate units. Each of these units is a unique individuality (self).

What can correspond to our individuality in the physical world? On the surface - nothing.

We know that in classical mechanics there are not any criteria allowing us to

dismember the world into separated "objects" or "systems". The physical world

seems to be completely deprived of such quality as "individuality". Quantum

mechanics only aggravates this situation. According to quantum theory all the

same-sort particles are absolutely identical and if they cannot be distinguished

even from the point of view of their position in space, these particles lose any

individuality and self-identity.

Maybe we made an error having put into correspondence the physical world and

individual subjectivity? Above we have drawn a conclusion that our subjective

being is rooted in transsubjective reality ("Noetic" world). Maybe it's

necessary to identify the physical world with this transsubjective reality?

In order to find place of subjective and transsubjective reality it is necessary

to take into account not only quantum mechanics, but also theory of relativity.

Let's try to answer the question: what properties of objective reality

correspond to rather paradoxical statements of theory of relativity? The basic

postulates of special and general theory of relativity: persistence of light

speed, postulate of general covariance - result, as it is known, in the

conclusion that it is impossible to define basic geometrical, cinematic and

dynamic characteristics of physical objects irrespective of observer. It is

impossible to define such parameters as distance, length, speed, simultaneity of

events, mass, temporal intervals as identical for all observers in the Universe.

All these parameters depend on a observer's choice of reference system. In other

worlds, theory of relativity asserts that it's senseless to put a question: how

actually object is moving, what its true sizes are, what true distance is

between objects, what event actually had taken place earlier and what later. Thus,

the opportunity for creation of such spatial and temporal description

of the world, that is independent of reference system choice, is absolutely

excluded. The world is viewed as disintegrated into a set of equivalent spatial

and temporal "pictures" representing the Universe in different ways.

However, on the other hand, theory of relativity allows us to get invariant,

deprived of any references to observer's reference system, description of the

Universe. We can get such kind of "objective" description under condition of

refusing separated descriptions of spatial and temporal parameters of events.

Instead of it, we must use the space-time intervals as unified invariant

characteristic of relations between events. This interval is described

mathematically as a quadratic form of spatial and temporal coordinates of events

(in special theory of relativity) and it doesn't depend on the referent system


Using space-time intervals we can describe all events in the Universe as points

of unified 4-demensional continuum (so-called "Minkowski space").

So, there are two different methods of Universe description originated from the

theory of relativity. The first one is a "dynamic", spatial and temporal

description, which represents the world as a disintegrated set of equivalent,

but not identical "subjective" pictures. The second one is a "static"

description, which, on the contrary, allows us to consider the Universe from

unified, objective point of view - as integrated system of events, put in order

by space-time intervals.

My main idea is that these two descriptions are not two different forms of

representation of the same reality, but they are descriptions of two different

heterogeneous "layers" or "levels" of being. The first "level" (spatial and

temporal being) corresponds to the "actual" reality, which is given to us by

means of our sensual experience. The second "level" (space-time continuum)

corresponds to the transsubjective "ideal" (supersensible) reality, which we

have named "Noetic world".

What is the main distinction between "actual" (sensual) and "Noetic" levels of

being? We saw that on the level of "actual" being there is no unified

(independent on the choice of reference system) spatial and temporal

specification of events. From my point of view, it means, that on this "level"

of being there are no any "objective" or "common" for everybody space and time.

Space and time exist on this "level" only subjectively - as subjective spatial

and temporal experiences, and these experiences can differ for different

observers. According to this view, "actual" being is disintegrated into a set of

separated from each other "individuums", like Leibnitz's "monads". "Actual"

space and time exist only inside these "monads" (as "sensual" space and time)

and there are no any space and time beyond them.

On the contrary, in "Noetic world" there are no any "monads" or "individuums".

Only unified, transsubjective space-time continuum exists on this "level" of


It is clear, that "noetic" space-time and "sensual" space and time are quite

different objects. It is so, because in "Noetic world" space and time are

closely connected, whereas "sensual" space is quite different from "sensual"

time. Moreover, "sensual" time has such fundamental property as "becoming". It

"flows" and, besides that, it is disintegrated into the present, the past and

the future (only the present time has perfect being). Whereas, "Noetic world"

has neither becoming, nor any difference between the present, the past and the

future. As "noetic" time can be "mixed" with space (as theory of relativity has

shown) it should be space-like entity, i.e. should exist as fixed, deprived of

becoming, quasi-spatial extent. Thus, "Noetic world" is, in essence, timeless

world. It exists not in time, but in "Eternity".

In spite of ontological heterogeneous character of "noetic" space-time and

"sensual" space and time, they are closely connected. (Otherwise, Mincowski's

geometry would not allow us to make any conclusions about "sensual" reality,

i.e. theory of relativity would not have any practical value).

In order to understand the mechanism of connection between "noetic" and

"sensual" worlds, it is necessary again to take into account the quantum theory.

The world which Mincowski's geometry directly describes, is, simultaneously, the

world which is described by mathematical formulas of quantum mechanics. Indeed,

more complete and exact description of physical reality is given to us by the

relativistic quantum theory. This theory unites the principles of quantum

mechanics and special relativity theory (there is no satisfactory synthesis of

quantum mechanics and general relativity theory). But it is possible to unite

these two theories without any contradictions, only if they describe the same

reality. Thus, "Noetic world" is not only "Minkowski space", but it is also the

world described by relativistic quantum theory. But quantum mechanics, in both

non-relativistic and relativistic cases, describes not actual events, but only

potencies of events, which may be "transformed" into actual events by means of

measurement. Measurement, already, does not belong to "Noetic world". In

particular, non-covariancy of state-vector collapse confirms it. Non-covariancy

of collapse shows us that actualization is the process that occurs outside of

"Minkowski space". This process occurs somewhere on a "joint" of "noetic" and

"sensual" being. According to this, we can understand "quantum jumps" as

transitions between two different "levels" of being.

Taking into account quantum mechanics, we can explain the nature of "Noetic

world" and the character of its connection with "sensual" being. "Noetic world"

is the world of "sensual" world's events potencies. From this point of view,

space-time continuum is united potency of "sensual" (subjective) space and time,

i.e. it is, in essence, nontemporal and nonspatial supersensible "law" ruling

the events in subjective space and time of each separated subject.

The connection of "noetic" and "sensual" is the connection between potential and

actual (supersensible law and phenomenon, subordinated to this law).

Taking into account that "Noetic world" manifests itself in personal subjective

being as a certain meaning (an idea of transcendent reality) it is also

possible to say that space-time continuum is a unified "idea" (logos) of sensual

space and time.

To illustrate ontologically heterogeneous character of "noetic" space-time and

"sensual" space and time we may use a "computer" metaphor. It is possible to

present "Noetic world" as computer program and "sensual" world as a set

of displays on which certain mobile objects are represented. Moving of

these objects in each display is controlled by that program. This moving takes

place in "internal" space and time of each display and this moving is controlled

by some combination of binary digits, which the program (common for all

displays) contains. It is obvious, that "binary digits" have a nature quite

different from visible moving on display. Analogously the "sensual" space and

time are quite different from "noetic" space-time continuum.

This "two-level" model of being helps us to understand why "scientific picture

of the world" differs so strongly from the world we directly perceive. When we

search the world we try to discover the main "laws" of nature. But these "laws"

are not the part of "sensual" being, that we can directly perceive. It is

necessary to search the "program" controling "streams of events" on "sensual"

being level. But this "program" is ontologically quite different from the

"sensual" reality. Therefore, "scientific picture of the world" can not be

isomorphic to "empirical world" - and this really takes place. As a result, we

must put into our theory additional postulates (such as reduction of wave

function postulate), if we want to use them in practice.

Now, we are quite ready to answer the question about a place of subjective and

transsubjective being in a physical picture of the world. We have seen, that

individuality (private being) as well as qualia arises only in connection with

measurement. Hence, if we deprived physical picture of the world of any

reference to measurements (state-vector collapse) we should received the

description of a trassubjective world. It should be the world, which we could

describe by single wave function, i.e. the world lacking of any separate

"actual" parts.

To pass from "noetic" transsubjective reality to "sensual" world, having

self-identical "individual" parts, it is necessary to take into account

measurements. Indeed, if quantum object is observed, it, obviously, receives

an individuality in this case - we can observe it as self-identical separated

object. Therefore, an individuality "is created" in the process of measurement.

If quantum potencies correspond to meanings (subjective meanings - if we take

into account the results of previous measurements, and transsubjective ones - in

the opposite case) and if quantum observiables correspond to sensual experience,

the very "mechanism" of state-vector collapse should correspond to volitional

and emotional sphere of subjective being. Our will is free so far as the

processes of transition from potential being to actual are not completely

controlled by external physical conditions, i.e. by virtue of existence of such

phenomenon as "quantum spontaneity". Thus, our unique individuality may be

defined as a set of "hidden reasons" determining character of behaviour of

quantum object in each particular case of an alternative choice between

different quantum histories. Unique character of our self (its "aseity")

manifests itself, according to our model, as such behaviour of quantum system,

that is impossible to characterize with the help of some certain rules or

general norms, except the probabilistic norms. Probabilistic character of

information about future behaviour of quantum objects coud be explained by this


Does it mean that we come back to the concept of "hidden variables", which we

had earlier rejected? It doesn't mean that. Usually, the theories with "hidden

variables" are considered as an alternative of the standard quantum mechanical

description. It's supposed, that standard quantum mechanics gives us only

surface, phenomenological description of physical processes, that can be

understood more adequately only if we take into account "hidden variables". I

think, there are no reasons to doubt about completeness and, moreover, "final"

character of the quantum mechanical description. From this point of view,

quantum mechanics gives final, complete and exhaustive description of the

"layer of being" corresponds to transsubjective "noetic" reality. It is not

complete only in the sense, that this "noetic being layer" - is not the whole

being. There are other "layers of being", which can not be described by

mathematical formulas of quantum mechanics. Thus, "hidden reasons", which have

arisen as correlate to our unique self, are not such entities helping to us get

new interpretation of quantum mechanics. They are introduced in addition to

quantum mechanics for the purpose of explaining real behaviour of quantum

objects, which has no an adequate and complete explanation in standard quantum





In previous paragraphs we have constructed a general model of being following

from both analysis of human subjectivity and searching analogy of physical reality and

subjective experience. In this model being is represented as "many-layer" structure

including in addition to spatial and temporal, qualitatively certain "actual"

level of being (on this level being is disintegrated into a set of separated

from each other individuums, which have own internal or private existence), as

well as the "Noetic world" - transsubjective being, deprived of sensual space,

time and qualia.

Essential problem arises here in connection with our previous assumption that it

is measurement that creates actualization and actual being. However, measurement

assumes existence of the subject-observer. Does it mean, that our explanation of

subjective experience via measurement is a sort of "arguing in a circle"? If we take von

Neumann's theory of measurement as a basis, in which important role of

observer's consciousness is really assumed, such "arguing in a circle" actually

takes place.

However, from philosophical point of view "arguing in a circle" is not a reason

for rejecting any conceptions. In our case, this sort of arguing points only to

substantionality of subjective being. Subjective being has, from my point of

view, "aseity", i.e. it is self-existent, self-created sort of being. From this

point of view, subjectivity cannot be explained without self-reference, i.e.

"arguing in a circle".

However, if subjectivity as we suppose, constitutes the basis for not only human

consciousness, but also is present (in unconscious form) in inanimate nature

(particularly, in a measuring apparatus), we can explain actualization without

reference to consciousness of observer. It is possible to assume, that

state-vector collapse occurs not in human subjectivity, but in a subjectivity of

measuring apparatus. If it's true, we can speak about "actualization" in all

cases, when an irreversible "flow" of information from one subjective sphere to

another takes place, irrespective of whether these subjective spheres are aware

of this information.

According to this, it is possible to assume that actualization takes place each

time when the quantum system interacts with a nonequilibrium environment in such

a way, that as a result "imprinting" of some information about a state of this

quantum system occurs. (This point of view is confirmed by the fact that

state-vector collapse takes place even if information about quantum object has

been taken, and then is lost, i.e. it not having reached human-observer

consciousness) .

As being in our ontological model is dual (consists of two diverse components -

actual and potential), our knowledge must be dual too. Our knowledge about

"actual" reality (i.e. "sensual" knowledge) has representative character. A

sensual image is not identical to its prototype (object) and sensual qualia do

not coincide with "objective" qualities. There is only the structural similarity

(isomorphism-like relations) between them.

Vice-versa, knowledge of noetic transsubjective reality has, apparently, a form

of direct identity of thought (idea) and its object. On the one hand, it is

possible, already, by virtue of the same ontological status of the "Noetic

world" and personal meanings. Both may be defined as "pure potencies" or as pure

knowledge, deprived of any form of representation. Isomorphism in this case

means absolute identity. On the other hand, by virtue of Leibnitz's principle of

indiscernible identity, that is exactly usable just in the "Noetic world" (as it

is deprived of space and time), if two entities are identical, they are not two

entities, but one entity, taken two times. Therefore, it is necessary to admit,

that we are not only capable of creating ideas, that are identical to (noetic)

objects, but noetic entities are capable of being presented directly in our

subjective sphere as subjective-transsubjective phenomena (i.e. these entities,

existing as subjective phenomena, exist as transsubjective phenomena

simultaneously). When I try to think over of noetic object, such as number,

function, etc., this object "enters" into me and "thinks itself" inside me,

remaining, simultaneously, an objective reality (i.e. it exists simultaneously

outside and inside me). It is the phenomenon that is called "intellectual

intuition", which Plotinos defined as "absolute knowledge, based on identity of

knowing mind and knowable object".

Thus, the conception of "absolute truth" revives here, and this absolute truth

is considered not only as something quite achievable, but it is supposed that

this "absolute truth" has been already achieved in modern physical knowledge.

Let's note, first of all, that accessibility of "absolute truth" demands with

necessity the correct theory to be unique and to describe some certain fragment

of reality. We can not speak about "absolute truth", if there are several

non-isomorphic, consistent theories which describe and explain all known facts

with equal success. In this case the choice of the "true" theory is possible

only as a result of agreement between scientists.

Let's emphasize the circumstance, that the non-isomorphic mathematical

descriptions of one and the same fragment of reality, compatible with all known

facts,apparently, can differ one from another only in description of

unobservable (hidden) mechanisms ruling the observable phenomena. However,

exactly the concept of hidden mechanisms was eliminated in modern physical

theories. The revolution in 20th century's physics was connected with

realization of idea of elimination of all non-observable entities from the

theory. So, relativity theory excluded from the theory such non-observable

entities, as absolute space and time, absolute simultaneity, absolute mass, etc.

It was shown, that these entities can not be returned back into physical

theories. It looked as though the being "resisted" to introduction of any hidden


Similarly, quantum mechanics excluded from the theory non-observable

coordinates, trajectories, impulses and other characteristics. Unique

"mechanism" that controls behaviour of quantum object is probability wave's

dynamics (dynamics of potencies). But we cannot consider potencies as something

"hidden". All potencies show themselves in actualization exhaustively. Thus,

basic principles of quantum mechanics and theory of relativity do not exclude an

opportunity of absolute identity of their mathematical formulas and objective


From this point of view the "correct theory" of electron and "real" electron are

the same, i.e. electron is a "correct" theory of electron that exists both

outside and inside of our minds. The question: "what is "behind" the

mathematical formulas of physics?" has an answer: "nothing". Being and thinking

on this level of being are identical. Thus, we may eliminate large part of

paradoxes of relativity theory and quantum mechanics - since these paradoxes

arise when we put the question: " what is "behind" mathematics?"

It is also clear why physical theories are deprived of any "picture-like"

representations. Being in physical theories, is a "noetic" one and it has not

any sensual definiteness and, hence, it cannot be represented as picture-like

image in principle. So, we can draw a conclusion that the principle of

accessibility of "absolute truth" can serve as heuristic methodological

principle which can help to search correct the "final" physical picture of the

world. We can conclude that "final" theory ( "Theory of Everything") should

systematically exclude any "hidden" reality, "hidden mechanisms" or "implicit"

order". It should also exclude an opportunity of infinite growth of our

knowledge (for example, by excluding an opportunity to perform more and more

exact measurements). It should be logically noncompletable and exclude

opportunity of any "visual representations" of physical entities. Such

properties, as I think, contemporary physical theories already have (partly).

It is possible to explain many mysterious properties of physical objects by

assuming a "final" character of knowledge that these theories contain. Any

"final" descriptions of reality, if they have a status of "absolute truth",

should a priori have such peculiarities, which take place in a case of quantum

mechanics and relativity theory.




The main distinction of our approach to the "quantum foundations of

consciousness" from other similar theories is its "monistic" character. Quantum

models of consciousness offered by such authors as D. Bohm, H. P. Stapp, R.

Penrose, E.H. Walker and many other similar models are founded on dualistic

ontological basis. These authors try to use quantum theory for proving the idea,

that consciousness is a necessary component of physical reality, another

component of which is a non-animated matter. The idea prevails, that

consciousness comes into material world only through "quantum jumps" between

different quantum histories (i.e. it corresponds to state-vector collapses).

For example, according Stapp (1993, 1996), the inner or mental aspects of

mind/brain system correlate with actual events (quantum jumps between high-level

(macroscopic or classical) branches of brain quantum state), and material aspect

of mind/brain system correlate with the "objective tendencies" (quantum

potencies), i.e. consciousness corresponds to quantum events, and matter (of

brain) corresponds to quantum states. Thus, only actual being has dual

mental-material structure. ("The physical and mental events can be regarded as

two aspects of the same event-like reality" (Stapp (1996)).Potential being has not any

mental property. According to this theory, we may conclude that single function

of consciousness is a free choice between different high-level brain quantum

states that may correspond to different states of mind or to different behaviour


The main lack of this theory is its "mystical" character. It requires goes

beyond standard scientific methods for searching of consciousness. Indeed, we

have no scientific methods for explanation of "quantum jumps" and, if the latter

corresponds to consciousness, we have not any explanation of conscious functions

too. (According to Penrose (1993) , consciousness corresponds to quantum

noncomputable dynamics in human brain. That means that we can not use methods of

computer science for searching of function of our consciousness).

According to our approach, matter, as something quite different from subjectivity,

is completely eliminated. There are not only quantum events that may correlate

with "actual" subjective states. Quantum potencies have subjective correlates

too. They correspond both to personal (if they are connected to other subjective

phenomena) meanings and to transsubjective ones (beyond this connection).

Third group of subjective phenomena - will and emotions, correspond to the very

"mechanism" of actualization which bridges actual (sensual) and potential

("noetic") components of being.

Our unique "selfhood" may correspond to "hidden reasons" which are determinants

of unique (noncomputable) choices between different possible quantum histories.

The greatest advantage of this approach is that it allows us to search

consciousness in framework of contemporary science methods. We may, for example,

propose that consciousness corresponds to the some sort of quantum computer,

that is localized in our brain. This proposition allows us to use theory of

quantum computations for explanation of the huge computational power of our

brain and, besides, we can try to use analogy with quantum computer for

explanation of some peculiarities of our subjective experience.




Walker, E.H. (1970) The Nature of Consciousness, Mathematical Biosciences,

7, pp. 131-178.

Bohm, D. (1983) Wholeness and the Implicate Order, London, UC.

Penrose, R. (1989) The Emperor's New Mind, London, UC.

Penrose, R. (1993) Shadows of the Mind, London, UC.

Stapp, H.P. (1996) Why Classical Mechanics Cannot Naturally Accommodate

Consciousness bat Quantum Mechanics Can, Psyche, 2 (21).

Stapp, H.P. (1993) Mind, Matter, and Quantum Mechanics, Berlin, GFR.

Globus, G. (1996) Quantum Consciousness is Cybernetic, Psyche, ? 2 (21).

Hameroff, S., Penrose, R. (1996) Orchestrated Reduction of Quantum Coherence

in Brain Microtubules : A Model of Consciousness, Toward a Science of

Consciousness. The First Tucson Discussions and Debates, Tucson, USA.

Hameroff, S. (1994) Quantum coherence in microtubules: A Neural Basis of

Emergent Consciousness, J. of Consciousness Studies, ? 1, pp. 91-118.

Toward a Science of Consciousness. The First Tucson Discussions and

Debates. Tucson, 1996.

Riccardi, L.M., Umezawa, H. (1967) Brain and Physics of Mand-BodyProblems,

Cybernetic, 1967.Vol 4, ? 44.

Jibu, M., Yasue, H. (1993) Intracellular Quantum Signal Transfer in

Umezawa's Quantum Brain Dynamics, Cybernetics and Systems, ? 24, pp.1-7.

Wigner, E.P. (1983) Remarks on Mind-Body Problem, Quantum Theory and

Measurement, Prinsceton, USA, pp. 168-181.

Sarfatti, J.(1996) Is Consciousness a Violation of Quantum Mechanics,

Toward a Science of Consciousness. The First Tucson Discussions and Debates,

Tucson, USA.

Husserl, E. (1962) Ideas. General Introduction to Phenomenology, N.Y., USA.

Popper, K.R. (1972) Objective Knowledge. Oxford, UC.

Costa de Beauregard, O. (1977) Time Symmetry and the Einstein Paradox. 1,

Novo cimento, Vol. B 42, ? 1, pp. 41-64.; (1979) Vol. B 51, ? 2, pp. 267-279.