Quantum Mechanics, Metaphysics, and Bohm's Implicate Order

Mind and Matter 2 (17):155-186 (2019)
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The persistent interpretation problem for quantum mechanics may indicate an unwillingness to consider unpalatable assumptions that could open the way toward progress. With this in mind, I focus on the work of David Bohm, whose earlier work has been more influential than that of his later. As I’ll discuss, I believe two assumptions play a strong role in explaining the disparity: 1) that theories in physics must be grounded in mathematical structure and 2) that consciousness must supervene on material processes. I’ll argue that the first assumption appears to lead us toward Everett’s many worlds interpretation, which suggests a red flag. I’ll also argue that the second assumption is suspect due to the persistent explanatory gap for consciousness. Later, I explore ways that Bohm’s later work holds some promise in providing a better fit with our world, both phenomenologically and empirically. Also, I’ll address the possible problem of realism.

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