The Quest for the Secret Force of the Universe, New York: HarperCollins, 2002.
The Field by Lynne McTaggart is the book I always wanted to read because I always wanted to write it. I always wanted to write a study that proves that all what myopic modern science excludes, exists. And here is this book. It reads almost like a thriller, so captivating it is, and the author is able to convey the complex material in understandable terms.
It is obvious that she understands what she writes about, and some of the quantum physics stuff really is not easy to grasp.
The author argues from the premise that all in our universe is interconnected, that nothing is isolated, or, as scientists say, that all is entangled. Now, when you put up such a point of departure, a lot of consequences flow out from this. She writes:
Perhaps the most essential ingredient of this interconnected universe was the living consciousness that observed it. In classical physics, the experimenter was considered a separate entity, a silent observer behind glass, attempting to understand a universe that carried on, whether he or she was observing it or not. In quantum physics, however, it was discovered, the state of all possibilities of any quantum particle collapsed into a set entity as soon as it was observed or a measurement taken. To explain these strange events, quantum physicists had postulated that a participatory relationship existed between observer and observed – these particles could only be considered as ‘probably’ existing in space and time until they were ‘perturbed’, and the act of observing and measuring them forced them into a set state—an act akin to solidifying Jell-O. This astounding observation also had shattering implications about the nature of reality. It / suggested that the consciousness of the observer brought the observed object into being./11-12
This is the most lucid and well-written explanation about the observer’s role in modern physics I ever found in a book. It boils down to our observing life results in changing life. If by observing the world, we change the world, it becomes evident that we are entangled with the world—and not isolated islands in space.
Scientists might understand in minute detail the screws, bolts, joints and various wheels, but nothing about the force that powers the engine./12
So what is that secret force that drives all, that is the invisible engine behind all, and that animates all? It’s called the zero point field. Is that the magic formula that brings back the ether and the orgone that have been debated away? McTaggart shows with convincing evidence that modern science has more or less integrated now the cosmic energy field.
Quantum mechanics had demonstrated that there is no such thing as a vacuum, or nothingness. What we tend to think of as a sheer void if all of space were emptied of matter and energy and you examined even the space between the stars is, in subatomic terms, a hive of activity./19
McTaggart also explains that our universe is not only active ‘in between’ matter, but is also a ‘relational’ interface where everything is connected with everything, and in relationship with one another:
What we believe to be our stable, static universe is in fact a seething maelstrom of subatomic particles fleetingly popping in and out of existence. Although Heisenberg’s principle most famously refers to the uncertainty attached to measuring the physical properties of the subatomic world, it also has another meaning: that we cannot know both the energy and the lifetime of a particle, so a subatomic event occurring within a tiny time frame involves an uncertain amount of energy. Largely because of Einstein’s theories and his famous equation E=mc2, relating energy to mass, all elementary particles interact with each other by exchanging energy through other quantum particles, which are believed to appear out of nowhere, combining and annihilating each other in less than an instant…/19
One of the ways of looking at subatomic particles that physicists needed to change was to see them as isolated pieces of matter. Every time when they would look at them in that way, a paradox would happen, which led to a different way of thinking. It was only after including the observer in the experiment that paradoxes could be avoided and comprehensive results were achieved in quantum physics.
As the pioneers of quantum physics peered into the very heart of matter, they were astounded by what they saw. The tiniest bits of matter weren’t even matter, as we know it, not even a set something, but sometimes one thing, sometimes something quite different. And even stranger, they were often many possible things at the same time. But most significantly, these subatomic particles had no meaning in isolation, but only in relationship with everything else. At its most elemental, matter couldn’t be chopped up into self-contained little units, but was completely indivisible. You could only understand the universe as a dynamic web of interconnection. Things once in contact remained always in contact through all space and all time./XV
Perhaps the most essential ingredient of this interconnected universe was the living consciousness that observed it. In classical physics, the experimenter was considered a separate entity, a silent observer behind glass, attempting to understand a universe that carried on, whether he or she was observing it or not. In quantum physics, however, it was discovered, the state of all possibilities of any quantum particle collapsed into a set entity as soon as it was observed or a measurement taken. To explain these strange events, quantum physicists had postulated that a participatory relationship existed between observer and observed—these particles could only be considered as ‘probably’ existing in space and time until they were ‘perturbed,’ and the act of observing and measuring them forced them into a set state—an act akin to solidifying Jell-O. This astounding observation also had shattering implications about the nature of reality. It / suggested that the consciousness of the observer brought the observed object into being./11-12
The immense energy that has been measured as pertaining to the zero-point field could represent another piece of evidence to its ‘global motor’ kind of function in our universe. McTaggart writes:
It has been calculated that the total energy of the Zero Point Field exceeds all energy in matter by the factor of 1040, or 1 followed by 40 zeros./23
It also has been found that the zero-point field contributes to the stability of matter and represents something like a blueprint of the whole universe:
You can show mathematically that electrons lose and gain energy constantly from the Zero Point Field in a dynamic equilibrium, balanced at exactly the right orbit. Electrons get their energy to keep going without slowing down because they are refueling by tapping into these fluctuations of empty space. In other words, the Zero Point Field accounts for the stability of the hydrogen atom—and, by inference, the stability of all matter./25
If all subatomic matter in the world is interacting constantly with this ambient ground-state energy field, the subatomic waves of The Field are constantly imprinting a record of the shape of everything. As the harbinger and imprinter of all wavelengths and all frequencies, the Zero Point Field is a kind of shadow of the universe for all time, a mirror image and record of everything that ever was./26