Does quantum mechanics predict the existence of a spiritual “soul”? Testimonials from prominent physics researchers from institutions such as Cambridge University, Princeton University, and the Max Planck Institute for Physics in Munich claim that quantum mechanics predicts some version of “life after death.” They assert that a person may possess a body-soul duality that is an extension of the wave-particle duality of subatomic particles.
Wave-particle duality, a fundamental concept of quantum mechanics, proposes that elementary particles, such as photons and electrons, possess the properties of both particles and waves. These physicists claim that they can possibly extend this theory to the soul-body dichotomy. If there is a quantum code for all things, living and dead, then there is an existence after death (speaking in purely physical terms). Dr. Hans-Peter Dürr, former head of the Max Planck Institute for Physics in Munich, posits that, just as a particle “writes” all of its information on its wave function, the brain is the tangible “floppy disk” on which we save our data, and this data is then “uploaded” into the spiritual quantum field. Continuing with this analogy, when we die the body, or the physical disk, is gone, but our consciousness, or the data on the computer, lives on.
“What we consider the here and now, this world, it is actually just the material level that is comprehensible. The beyond is an infinite reality that is much bigger. Which this world is rooted in. In this way, our lives in this plane of existence are encompassed, surrounded, by the afterworld already… The body dies but the spiritual quantum field continues. In this way, I am immortal,” says Dürr.
Dr. Christian Hellwig of the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen, found evidence that information in our central nervous system is phase encoded, a type of coding that allows multiple pieces of data to occupy the same time. He said, “Our thoughts, our will, our consciousness and our feelings show properties that could be referred to as spiritual properties…No direct interaction with the known fundamental forces of natural science, such as gravitation, electromagnetic forces, etc. can be detected in the spiritual. On the other hand, however, these spiritual properties correspond exactly to the characteristics that distinguish the extremely puzzling and wondrous phenomena in the quantum world.”
Physicist Professor Robert Jahn of Princeton University concluded that if consciousness can exchange information in both directions with the physical environment, then it can be attributed with the same “molecular binding potential” as physical objects, meaning that it must also follow the tenets of quantum mechanics. Quantum physicist David Bohm, a student and friend of Albert Einstein, was of a similar opinion. He stated, “The results of modern natural sciences only make sense if we assume an inner, uniform, transcendent reality that is based on all external data and facts. The very depth of human consciousness is one of them.”
Although there is no definitive concrete evidence for this theory, one could arguably afford some weight to these claims if some of the most brilliant minds in quantum mechanics believe that it is consistent with the general patterns and trends of modern science. If proven, this theory could have monumental implications; if humans do “download” their consciousness into a thus far unobservable field, then a person’s consciousness could, in Dürr’s words, truly be immortal.