Beyond the 'theory of everything' paradigm: synergetic patterns and the order of the natural world


(article sent to participants of the Lindau meeting where a talk on this subject was given) David Bohm suggested that some kind of implicate order underlies the manifest order observed in physical systems, while others have suggested that some kind of mind-like process underlies this order. In the following a more explicit picture is proposed, based on the existence of parallels between spontaneously fluctuating equilibrium states and life processes. Focus on the processes of natural language suggests a picture involving an evolving ensemble of experts, each with its own goals but nevertheless acting in harmony with each other. The details of how such an ensemble might function and evolve can translate into aspects of the world of fundamental physics such as symmetry and symmetry breaking, and can be expected to be the source of explicit models. This picture differs from that of regular physics in that goal-directedness has an important role to play, contrasting with that of the conventional view which implies a meaningless universe.

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Brian Josephson
Cambridge University


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