The Dalai Lama argues that “Broadly speaking, although there are some differences, I think Buddhist philosophy and Quantum Mechanics can shake hands on their view of the world. We can see in these great examples the fruits of human thinking. Regardless of the admiration, we feel for these great thinkers, we should not lose sight of the fact that they were human beings just as we are.” In modern times, science and spirituality no longer have to be considered opposing views. In many ways, these two fields have been merging by way of quantum physics and consciousness; quantum physics has verified what Buddhists have taught for centuries. Indeed, human beings are connected to everything around them, as per both science and spirituality.
The Dalai Lama has attended a conference on quantum physics, and he has even given a speech pertaining to quantum physics. The two-day conference occurred in November 2015: Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, also spoke of Madhyamaka philosophy in New Delhi. Madhyamaka means “one who holds to the middle” or “the middle way,” and it was created by the Indian Buddhist philosopher Nagarjuna. More specifically, the Dalai Lama said that “I hope conferences like this can address two purposes: extending our knowledge and improving our view of reality so we can better tackle our disturbing emotions. Early in my lifetime, science was employed to further material and economic development. Later in the 20th century, scientists began to see that peace of mind is important for physical health and well-being . . . As a result of combining warm-heartedness with intelligence, I hope we’ll be better equipped to contribute to humanity’s well-being.”
The Dalai Lama further explained how he learned of quantum physics: “When I was about 19 or 20 I developed a curiosity about science that had begun with an interest in mechanical things and how they worked. In China, in 1954/5 I met Mao Zedong several times. Once he commended me for having a scientific mind, adding that religion was poison, perhaps presuming that this would appeal to someone who was ‘scientific minded’. After coming to India as a refugee I had many opportunities to meet people from many different walks of life, scientists among them. 30 years ago I began a series of dialogues focusing on cosmology, neurobiology, physics, including Quantum Physics, and psychology. These discussions have been largely of mutual benefit. Scientists have learned more about the mind and emotions, while we have gained a subtler explanation of the matter.”
He went on to say that “About 15-20 years ago at some meeting, the Indian physicist Raja Ramanna told me that he had been reading Nagarjuna and that he’d been amazed to find that much of what he had to say corresponded to what he understood of quantum physics. A year ago at Presidency College in Kolkata, the Vice-Chancellor Prof S Bhattacharya mentioned that according to quantum physics nothing exists objectively, which again struck me as corresponding to Chittamatrin and Madhyamaka views, particularly Nagarjuna’s contention that things only exist by way of designation.”
In closing, the Dalai Lama asserted that “Right now when we see the sad things going on in the world, crying and prayer won’t achieve very much. . . . Although we may be inclined to pray to God or Buddha to help us solve such problems, they might reply that since we created these problems it is up to us to solve them. Most of these problems were created by human beings, so naturally, they require human solutions. We need to take a secular approach to promulgating universal human values. The sense that our basic human nature is positive is a source of hope [that] if we really make an attempt, we can change the world for the better.”
Physical atoms are comprised of vortices of energy which are constantly spinning and vibrating, and radiating individual energy signatures. Inside the tiny, invisible, tornado-like vortex, there are infinitely small energy vortices referred to as quarks and photons. This is the structure of the atom; technically, it has no physical structure—so nothing has any physical structure! As per R. C. Henry, “A fundamental conclusion of the new physics also acknowledges that the observer creates the reality. As observers, we are personally involved with the creation of our own reality. Physicists are being forced to admit that the universe is a “mental” construction. Pioneering physicist Sir James Jeans wrote: “The stream of knowledge is heading toward a non-mechanical reality; the universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine. Mind no longer appears to be an accidental intruder into the realm of matter, we ought rather hail it as the creator and governor of the realm of matter.”
What’s more, quantum physics has demonstrated that the present can change the past, that time isn’t real, and that an afterlife is a reality. So, quantum mechanics is basically the science of consciousness and spirituality; as per Neil DeGrasse Tyson, “The atoms of our bodies are traceable to stars that manufactured them in their cores and exploded these enriched ingredients across our galaxy, billions of years ago. For this reason, we are biologically connected to every other living thing in the world. We are chemically connected to all molecules on Earth. And we are atomically connected to all atoms in the universe. We are not figuratively, but literally stardust.”
*This content was inspired by an amazing article that can be found here.