The Nightshirt Sightings, Portents, Forebodings, Suspicions

Category “Thought Experiments”

Master Minkowski’s Wild Ducks (Zen and the Glass Block Universe)

Thursday, 4 May, 2017

Probably because I am thinking about (and trying to finish a book on) precognition and retrocausation and the glass block universe they seem to imply, I keep finding my thoughts returning to a famous Zen koan from 8th-century China. You will have heard it: Master Ma and his student Pai Chang were walking along when […]

Stories Latent in the Landscape: Spirits, Time Slips, and “Super-Psi”

Saturday, 25 June, 2016

An alternative explanation sometimes given when mediums provide veridical information about deceased persons is “super-psi”—the idea that the medium is actually obtaining the information clairvoyantly and/or telepathically (i.e., from the heads of their sitters). Super-psi has also been used to account for cases of apparent reincarnation: A child psychically acquires information about a dead person […]

The Wyrd of the Early Earth: Cellular Pre-sense in the Primordial Soup

Sunday, 22 May, 2016

Stand brave, life-liver, bleeding out your days in the river of time. Stand brave: Time moves both ways … —Joanna Newsom, “Time, as a Symptom” The philosopher Alfred Korzybski, who influenced Phil Dick, Frank Herbert, Robert Heinlein, and other science-fictional minds of the mid-20th Century, named “time binding” as a characteristic human activity. He was […]

Wyrd, Post-Selection, and the Quantum Trickster

Saturday, 7 May, 2016

English is blessed with a large and fascinating family of w-r words connoting twisting, turning, and turning-into (in the sense of becoming)—think writhing wriggling worms and the wrath of wraiths. (See my ancient post about “werewords” if you are curious.) My favorite of this family is Wyrd, which comes from the Old English weorthan, “to […]

Psi’s Big Guns: Sleep Paralysis and Astral Time Travel

Saturday, 16 April, 2016

A year ago I wrote at length about out-of-body experiences (OOBEs) in the context of alchemy and the hermetic tradition. I confessed that I was a fence-sitter on the question of what they are—lucid dreams that just feel more real than most (i.e., corresponding to real physical environments) or actually what they feel like, some […]

Phil Dick Boulevard: Precognition, Karma, and the Unconscious

Saturday, 30 January, 2016

Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate. — Carl Jung The future is more coherent than the present, more animate and purposeful, and in a real sense, wiser. It knows more, and some of this knowledge gets transmitted back to us by what seems to […]

The Phil Dick Circuit and the Future of Precognitive Technology

Thursday, 3 December, 2015

Much of the skepticism surrounding quantum neuroscience is that its aim is generally to explain consciousness—a tall, confused, and some would say impossibly misguided order. Quantum explanations for consciousness invariably require large-scale coherence—that is, entanglement—across the whole brain or at least between large populations of neurons. Quantum wet blankets point out that this can only […]

Quantum Psychoanalysis: Interpreting Precognitive Dreams

Monday, 16 November, 2015

Near the end of Christopher Nolan’s 2014 film Interstellar, astronaut “Coop” is able to communicate with his younger self (as well as his daughter) decades in the past using a tesseract, a theoretical multidimensional portal created by our descendents thousands or millions of years in the future. Coop’s messages are oblique—he can’t address his younger […]

Altered States of Reading (Part 1): VALIS, Vallee, and Vaal

Saturday, 5 September, 2015

Where to begin when the story is a loop? I have been mulling over a particularly rich and thought provoking entry from Jacques Vallee’s journals (Forbidden Science, Volume Two), about a synchronistic walk he took one day in October, 1973 with Hal Puthoff, head of the Stanford Research Institute program researching ESP. Vallee was telling […]

What Lies Under the Skin?—Psi and the Physics of Indeterminacy

Tuesday, 28 July, 2015

I have suggested in previous posts that psi may operate not directly on actual reality, but on the unactualized quantum potential of superposed states prior to physical observation, or what for convenience I call the “Not Yet.” I don’t know if this is a widely held interpretation, although quantum mechanics is felt by many theorists […]