TSQM and Free Will

#1
I've put up a few scattered statements here and there on Time Symmetric Quantum Mechanics and free will. I've also had a blog post about 98% done now for about 6 months now, but I finally got it published! I don't know if it covers a whole lot more, but at least it's all in one place.

I'll also use this thread to eventually provide a link to Tollaksen's paper that should provide more details once he gets it published (shouldn't be too long)

Hope somebody finds it interesting! ;-)

http://exploreabitmore.blogspot.com/2014/10/time-symmetric-quantum-mechanics.html
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#4
Interesting stuff Ethan, thanks for posting!

I don't see how retrocausality can be incorporated into our usual understanding of causality which follows the expected Arrow of Time? Seems like we'd have to confront the fact that both of these causal arrows are running into each other?
 
#6
Interesting stuff Ethan, thanks for posting!

I don't see how retrocausality can be incorporated into our usual understanding of causality which follows the expected Arrow of Time? Seems like we'd have to confront the fact that both of these causal arrows are running into each other?
Thanks, glad you found it interesting!

I think this paragraph from the blog provides a hint how it might work (Tollaksen's paper should eventually provide more details):

In a subtle fashion, Mother Nature protects free will choice from "destiny", by making it so one can never be sure if what they observe in the present is really a wave function (i.e. "destiny") propagating back in time or just error in the measurement process, which is a ramification of the type of measurement used within TSQM - weak measurements. No matter what way they have come at this problem, they cannot get around it. It is only by examining all the measurements (past-present-future) after the fact, that one is able to decipher what really happened. In this way, free choice in the present, as to what measurements one can take, are protected from these subtle retrocausal influences. Further, it has been shown that it is precisely the probabilistic nature of QM that is needed in order for (1) free will, (2) cause and effect, and (3) a subtle retrocausality, to all exist harmoniously.
The retrocausality is a very subtle type and in some ways UN-equivalent to what we refer to as regular causality. The probabilistic nature of QM seems to play a pivotal role, in that the retrocausal influences "hide" in the present behind it.

I guess they do run into each other in TSQM in a way too, because it is the contribution of both state-vectors that determines what happens now. I think this jive up well with much of what the psi data seems to be trying to say, though.
 
S

Sciborg_S_Patel

#7
Isn't it odd to posit retrocausality if one can never be sure it exists? Perhaps there's something obvious I'm missing here?

Also, you've mentioned in another thread that weak measurements may be problematic in themselves?
 
#8
Thanks, glad you found it interesting!

I think this paragraph from the blog provides a hint how it might work (Tollaksen's paper should eventually provide more details):



The retrocausality is a very subtle type and in some ways UN-equivalent to what we refer to as regular causality. The probabilistic nature of QM seems to play a pivotal role, in that the retrocausal influences "hide" in the present behind it.

I guess they do run into each other in TSQM in a way too, because it is the contribution of both state-vectors that determines what happens now. I think this jive up well with much of what the psi data seems to be trying to say, though.
If the TSQM results are obtained. Do you foresee the dawn of a more holistic approach?
 
#9
Isn't it odd to posit retrocausality if one can never be sure it exists? Perhaps there's something obvious I'm missing here?
Well, few points here. TSQM and QM are mathematically equivalent, therefore one could possibly always frame a particular problem in regular QM and linear time/causality. However, like I mentioned on here before, a growing number of modern experiments are proving to be more eloquently and simply solved for under the framework of TSQM, while being intractable under regular QM. So, ...

(1) If these experiments keep building in number you have to ask which formulation is really the more parsimonious description of reality.
(2) Experiments (like presentiment experiments) already demonstrate some kind of retrocausality, thereby suggesting it probably exists and that, once again, TSQM is hinting towards the correct interpretation of reality
(3) TSQM is ultimately an incomplete theory, but a newer theory (perhaps a quantum gravity theory) may settle the issue and tell us what interpretation is really correct - my guess is it will involve a richer view of time/causality similar to what's presented in TSQM, but more complete.

Also, you've mentioned in another thread that weak measurements may be problematic in themselves?
Well, they're not problematic, per se, they're used all the time, but they may not be as "quantum" as we think.
 
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#10
If the TSQM results are obtained. Do you foresee the dawn of a more holistic approach?
I think it definitely adds to the "holistic" nature of QM as already talked about by Zeilinger in that other video posted here a little ways back. It can only help there, but whether it's a new dawn for a generally accepted approach, I'm not holding my breath on that one, but I hope so!
 
#11
I think it definitely adds to the "holistic" nature of QM as already talked about by Zeilinger in that other video posted here a little ways back. It can only help there, but whether it's a new dawn for a generally accepted approach, I'm not holding my breath on that one, but I hope so!
I hope Zeilinger still holds to the Holistic picture. Though I don't see why he wouldn't.
 
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