The 1995 film 12 Monkeys presents a causal time loop. Events which are conventionally labelled as “future events” or “past events” cause and result in each other. The whole premise relies on the concept of time in quantum physics. That time, is not a concept of an arrow going in a single direction through which we naturally progress, but rather singular experiences that always exist in space which is four dimensional. So all of our experiences, whether we think of them to be the past, present or the future all exist right now, simultaneously. “Future events” are as concrete and in grasp as “past events.”
If you take a while to think about it, it is a far more clear and real explanation of how we perceive experiences, events, and memories. Understanding that what we believe to be time is actually an illusion, and that the perception of time, like all other experiences is purely subjective, can be consciously liberating.
Another interesting concept of quantum physics is the theory of entanglement. This is when two particles become entangled and then separate in space time. However, this entanglement results in a shared connection which causes a change in one particle to have an instantaneous impact on the other particle, regardless of their distance apart in space time. What Einstein termed as “spooky action at a distance” is in stark contrast to earlier beliefs that particles only have an impact on their immediate surroundings.
What I’m interested in finding out is how these theories help to explain certain human relationships and para-psychological events such as premonition, precognition and retrocognition.
Quantum Physics and Relationships
We’ve all had experiences where we’ve simultaneously thought or done the same thing as someone who is emotionally close to us, even though they may be physically located very far away. This often happens with close family members, friends, and spouses– people with whom we have shared considerable experiences. The theory of entanglement is the only available explanation for the phenomenon. Somehow, when particles, or in this case, people are entangled and in the process share certain common characteristics, more romantically described as the “connection.”
But what about people with whom we have had very brief interactions, very long “time” ago. Are we capable of maintaining a durable connection in this case? Is the “connection” capable of existing infinitely, unless acted upon by an outside force for example?
There is yet another concept of quantum physics which states that energy gradually disperses. All objects lose energy and eventually reach a state of equilibrium. Therefore, if such a “connection” does exist between particles and people due to entanglement, the force of this connection should reduce, and eventually cease to exist as these particles remain constant in their locations in space time. Meanwhile, the particle is entangling with new and different particles in its immediate surroundings, forming new “connections” that affect its composition.
Trying to explain human relationships and the “connections” that people perceive or feel between one another becomes even more complicated when we try to dive even deeper into the concept of time. If we can visualize ourselves in the four-dimensional time space, it goes to argue that each individual in space time (that has or will ever exist) has its own trajectory, which at any time lies upon and does not lie upon the same trajectory as others. People have trajectories at different angles and directions. Add to that movement, and people also have different rates of speed at which they move through their trajectory. In a way, it could be thought that being within the same trajectory as someone else in space time would allow us access to that person that is otherwise not available. And vice versa.
These ideas can further be elaborated to explain levels of compatibility between people. One exercise denotes people’s taste in music in wavelengths which are then combined to form a new, uniform wavelength. Wavelengths that reinforce each other, indicate a greater amount of compatibility between people. Do that for all hobbies, interests and ways of thinking, and you can calculate a very specific and accurate measurement of human compatibility.
All of this is fine and dandy, until comes along a theory called “the uncertainty principle.” This principle literally shoots through our romantic notions of calculating probabilities of events using quantum physics by saying that there is a level of uncertainty and unpredictability in the universe that cannot be accounted through a probability calculation. So although particles in space time generally behave in certain ways in certain situations, they can also completely catch us by surprise and do something radically different and unexpected.
So is there a way of calculating how people will act or what our relationships will evolve into? It seems, no. We could formulate theories of high probability, but they could also turn out to be completely false.
Quantum Physics and Para-psychology
I have had experiences which para-psychology perceives to be “premonition” or “precognition.” Somehow, these were relatively easy for my mind to understand and accept. But when I had an experience of “retrocognition,” it completely baffled me as I could not perceive how it could be real. Until I learned more about quantum physics that is.
Premonition and precognition describes access to knowledge in the “future” that is not conventionally available. Their only difference seems to be the way in which the information is delivered, whether the information is literal or involves symbolism, and whether it is delivered in a wake or dreaming state. Retrocognition, on the other hand, is access to knowledge in the “past” that is not conventionally available. Let me give you a concrete personal example.
I experienced what I have assessed to be a warped form of retrocognition, of planned terrorist attacks that were prevented before they took place. I had no external access to the knowledge at the time of the retrocognition.
So terrorist attacks are planned for day X and are prevented by law enforcement several days before, on X-2. It is not reflected in the media until day X, after my experience of retrocognition, and is the only way I could obtain such knowledge. On day X, while present at one of the highly probable locations of one of the attacks, an instantaneous and unexplainable idea wholly consumes my mind, “there is going to be a bomb explosion.” It was so overpowering and certain that I raced out of the location and returned home immediately.
By the time I was home however, I dismissed the idea and felt extremely foolish, until shortly later, when a family member informed me of media reports regarding planned terrorist attacks in my town. This is my first external exposure to this knowledge. I am shocked and consider if what I experienced was a premonition. But I research further and learn that the terrorist attacks were in fact prevented by law enforcement several days before when they caught the perpetrators before they could launch their plan. It was not reflected in the media until several days later.
I didn’t even know that the word “retrocognition” existed at the time. But I understood that it cannot be premonition, which is a pre-knowledge of a “future” event. I had obtained a “retro-knowledge” of an event that had not even taken place.
I thought about this for weeks without finding any clear explanation. Now, I think the explanation may lie in quantum physics and the true nature of time. Of course, it pushes the envelope in that it argues that not just events that have happened or will happen, but also events that could have happened also have existence in space time, and are equally accessible. I may have accessed knowledge of the original planned terrorist attack, which was somehow averted, but existed nonetheless.
This may reinforce the idea that there are infinite alternative versions of our current reality that exist simultaneously. And the version that becomes our reality depends on our actions. If law enforcement had not caught the perpetrators that day, the reality on day X would have been a different one.
I think this is a strong hypothesis against those who argue that existence of all possible events, “past,” “present,” and “future” in space time are predefined and unchangeable. That is not so. We define and change them constantly.
Watch 12 Monkeys, the film that ignited this whole thought process.