Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Schrödinger's Proof (for the Existence of God)

Erwin Schrödinger by Louisa Gilder
Quantum physicist Erwin Schrödinger often wrote about philosophy and religion (his personal beliefs corresponded to some form of Vedanta) but surprisingly none of his musings on these topics include any trace of quantum theory. For Schrödinger physics and religion were completely separate. However in one instance, which deserves to be better known, Schrödinger produced a three-line logical proof of the existence of God based not on quantum theory but on the more general Materialist Assumption that the universe is completely describable by materialist laws. In the tradition of Aristotle, Aquinas and Anselm, here is Schrödinger's Proof for the Existence of God:

1. My body functions as a pure mechanism according to the laws of nature (Materialist Assumption).

2, Yet I know by direct and incontrovertible experience that I am directing its motions, of which I correctly foresee the effects.

3. Conclusion: I am the Person who controls the motions of the atoms according to the Law of Nature = I am God.


Dean Radin said...

Generations of physicists would surely agree, having worshiped his (meaning Schrodinger's) equations.

Alec said...

When I was practicing Zen under Sasaki Roshi (who will celebrate his 105th birthday next month), he would laugh about the people who achieve kensho, and tell him that they had realized that they were "god". One of his tests of their insight was to ask them "Where is god when you take a shit?" That would usually shake them up. But in the present context, this test could be loosely interpreted as a specific application of Schrodinger's proof.

nick herbert said...

Indeed, "taking a shit" is a concrete example of I-initiated foreseeable action. So it's not really true that "shit happens." Rather it's an Act of God.

Anonymous said...

Try *not* having a shit and see who is in charge of 'your' life!

Anonymous said...

not a whole lot of enlightenment on this board. Good luck with your journey though. ; )) Mike P