Quantum Physics and Its Implications Part II

Quantum Physics and Its Implications Part II


Quantum Physics is grounded on a set of puzzling experiments that resist all efforts to understand them based on normal human experience and classical scientific theory. Arthur Zajonc will describe the key experimental foundations of quantum physics and identify the crucial non-classical aspects of each experiment. These experiments point to a “quantum holism” that demands we reconsider the possibility of a new kind of interconnectedness to reality. The very notion of localized objects with intrinsic properties is challenged by quantum experiments. All attempts at “picturing” the quantum world in terms of conventional concepts based on sense experience are seen to fail. The inherently probabilistic character of quantum physics raises other important questions concerning microscopic causality. Are all events, including the radioactive decay of a single nucleus, caused? Michel Bitbol will describe the philosophical implications of these experiments and the “paradoxes” of quantum physics for our view of reality. One important alternative to “interpretations” of quantum theories is to forego the desire to have a representation of the world at all. “No view” is a well-established tradition within certain schools of Buddhist philosophy. Thupten Jinpa, as the Buddhist respondent, will take up this and related issues in his response to the presentations.

  • Dialogue 26
    27 sessions
  • January 18, 2013
    Drepung Monastery, Mundgod, India
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Thupten Jinpa

Thupten Jinpa, PhD, was trained as a monk at the Shartse College of Ganden Monastic University, South India, where he received the Geshe Lharam degree. In addition, Jinpa holds a bachelor’s honors degree in philosophy and a PhD in religious studies, both from Cambridge University. He taught at Ganden monastery and worked as a research fellow in Eastern religions at Girton College, Cambridge University. Jinpa has been the principal English translator to His Holiness the Dalai Lama since 1985 and has translated and edited numerous books by the Dalai Lama, including the New York Times best-sellers Ethics for the New Millennium and The Art of Happiness, as well as Beyond Religion, Universe in a Single Atom, and Transforming the Mind. His own publications include, in addition to numerous Tibetan works, Essential Mind Training; Wisdom of the Kadam Masters; Self, Reality, and Reason in Tibetan Philosophy: Tsongkhapa’s Quest for the Middle View; as well as translations of major Tibetan works featured in The Library of Tibetan Classics series. He is the main author of Compassion Cultivation Training (CCT), an eight-week formal program developed at the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education (CCARE) at Stanford University. Jinpa is an adjunct professor on the faculty of religious studies at McGill University, Montreal; the founder and president of the Institute of Tibetan Classics, Montreal; and the general series editor of The Library of Tibetan Classics series. He has been a core member of the Mind & Life Institute from its inception. Jinpa lives in Montreal and is married with two daughters.