Bruce Rosenblum (physicist)


Bruce Rosenblum was a physicist.


Quantum enigma : physics encounters consciousness (2nd ed., 2011)Edit

Bruce Rosenblum and Fred Kuttner, Quantum enigma : physics encounters consciousness (2nd ed., 2011)

  • I was visiting friends in Princeton one Saturday in the 1950s when our host asked his son-in-law, Bill Bennett, and me (Bruce) if we’d like to spend the evening with his friend, Albert Einstein. Two awed physics graduate students soon waited in Einstein’s living room as he came downstairs in slippers and sweatshirt. I remember tea and cookies but not how the conversation started.
    Einstein soon asked about our quantum mechanics course. […] Einstein persisted in exploring our thoughts about what the theory really meant. But the issues that concerned him were unfamiliar to us. Our quantum physics courses focused on the use of the theory, not its meaning. Our response to his probing disappointed Einstein, and that part of our conversation ended.
    • Ch. 1 : Einstein Called It “Spooky” And I Wish I Had Known
  • Quantum theory is stunningly successful. Not a single one of the theory’s predictions has ever been shown wrong. One-third of our economy depends on products based on it. However, the worldview demanded by quantum theory is not only stranger than we might suppose, it’s stranger than we can suppose.
    • Ch. 1 : Einstein Called It “Spooky” And I Wish I Had Known
  • Might a worldview suggested by quantum mechanics have relevance beyond science? Consider earlier discoveries that did have such relevance: Copernicus’s realization that Earth was not the center of the cosmos, or Darwin’s theory of evolution. The relevance of quantum mechanics is, in a sense, more immediate than Copernican or Darwinian ideas, which deal with the far away or long ago. Quantum theory is about the here and now. It even encounters the essence of our humanity, our consciousness.
    • Ch. 1 : Einstein Called It “Spooky” And I Wish I Had Known
  • Our book originated with a wide-ranging physics course for liberal arts students that in its last weeks focused on the mysteries of quantum mechanics. When I (Bruce) first proposed the course at a department meeting, that final focus prompted a faculty member to object:

    Though what you are saying is correct, presenting this material to nonscientists is the intellectual equivalent of allowing children to play with loaded guns.

    • Ch. 1 : Einstein Called It “Spooky” And I Wish I Had Known

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