Reviews and comments

A book review

The book is reedited and given a new title after the review was written. Some new sections are also added according to new findings.

The book of Olav Drageset “A Matter of Mind, Exploring the 11-Dimensional Cosmos” is difficult to classify. As the author says: “This book … does not portray a scientific theory. Nor is it scientific in a way that it delivers proofs. It is rather a piece of engineering”. Based on his long-lasting interest in psychology and more recent interest in theoretical physics, the author proposes a model for the functioning of the mind based on modern physical theories.

The first part of the book is devoted to a review of physical theories - from classical mechanics, through special and general relativity, quantum mechanics, to particle physics and string theory. The author follows a historical approach, showing how consecutive theories have evolved and developed. Special attention is paid to astrophysics and to the philosophy of scientific knowledge. The author emphasizes on the most extraordinary physical concepts like dark matter and dark energy, the extra dimensions of string theory, quantum entanglement and others. He tries to show that even well-established physical theories can be very difficult to comprehend and that there is a lot of psychology involved in their acceptance. Part one is valuable for the reader for the popular presentation of different physical theories, explained conceptually through many examples without the use of mathematics.

In part two the author raises his hypothesis of the physics of the mind. The concepts of dark matter and dark energy and of the extra space dimensions of string theories are the basis of his hypothesis. He introduces two “inner rooms” of the mind – “emotional room” and “intuitional room” in addition to the outer physical world (“outer room”). Interesting examples are presented for the perception of the speed of time and the analyzing function of the mind. The author discusses in detail different aspects of psychology like identity and body, personality, group minds, psychological residues and others. He suggests that physical laws may be different within the inner rooms and here dark matter and string theory come in handy. He associates the inner rooms with corresponding “branes” of string theory and places dark matter and dark energy in the corresponding branes.  He introduces the concept of “gravity snapping” between physical and dark-matter particles to explain the interaction between the physical and mental world. He presents extensive discussion on the details and possible results of his hypothesis. He touches on spirituality and religion and their relation to the physical world.

In his book the author tries to link two very different fields of science, namely modern theoretical physics and psychology. The hypothesis raised by the author may seem too fantastic to accept, but it presents an interesting and self-consistent construction which cannot be easily rejected either. It provokes the open-minded reader to look at the universe from different angles and to seek answers to many open questions, usually neglected by mainstream science. It will enrich the unprejudiced reader with many new concepts and ideas.

Professor Krassimir Stoychev. Ph.D.
Head, Department of Physics,
European Polytechnical University,

Referee's report: How Physics Could Explain the Mind

This is an interesting manuscript. It is fanciful in its comparison of higher-dimensional spaces with two defined states of mind, but why not? Nobody knows the role of higher dimensions. Although most particle physicists are now taking them seriously.

I especially like Drageset’s suggestion that human thought in his second, “still” three-dimensional space, could be like a quantum wavefunction before collapse. Nobody knows what a wavefunction is either, but after years of using and teaching quantum mechanics, I find myself telling students that quantum wave functions are more like ideas, not yet expressed in physical reality.

Drageset’s willingness to revise “mind emerges from matter” to “matter emerges from mind” is also consistent with the wavefunctions being primary, not matter. This is a truly fundamental concept.

So in my opinion there are enough original ideas in this paper to warrant publication.

Referee's report: Roadmap to a Cosmic Model that Supports Nonphysical and Nonlocal Phenomena

The author tries to use unexplored conclusions of string theory and relativity to explain non-physical and nonlocal effects in nature. Although the idea of the author may be true, the paper needs some more scientific justification. Of course, I recognize that all issues in this type of complex problem cannot be resolved in just one paper when most of the physicists are not working in this direction. So, I recommend this paper for publication so as to initiate some scientific discussions in these fields.