The Psychon Theory
ABSTRACT: The psychon theory is a panpsychist evolution theory based on a continuity from elementary particles to human souls. Elementary particles are like very primitive and basic organisms and we all (our souls) were elementary particles billions of years ago. During evolution our psychons (souls) have been responsible for the behaviour of atoms, molecules, enzymes, living cells, primitive neurons, primitive animals, ... , monkeys and of our ancestors.
The psychon theory has very concrete consequences, for instance there must be a limit to the number of human souls, which according to the latest demographic data could be even less than 7 billion.
Last relevant update: 12-Feb-1999 (last update: 12-Feb-2001)
---The Reductionist Scientific Word View ---
The Reductionist Scientific World View
The reductionist scientific world view as many religious world views is based on the premise that we humans are outside nature. It is admitted that human behaviour depends on objectives, values, intuition and a tendency towards order. However every attempt to admit analogous principles of finality in nature is criticized as anthropomorphism.
Hardly anyone would seriously suggest that houses, tools, vehicles or computers could evolve through blind chance and selection. Yet very effective housing for animals, such as bird's nests or termites' mounds, are explained by just that means.
(Individual) consciousness is denied on the one hand and regarded as essential on the other hand, depending only on the context. It is denied when animal behaviour is explained solely by material processes in the brain. It is ignored in Darwinism. It is essential when dealing with social behaviour, religion or human rights. Most scientists are not aware of this inconsistency.
The Second Law of Thermodynamics
The second law of thermodynamics could be viewed as one of the most central dogmas of the current scientific world view. Although nowhere in the known universe differences in temperature disappear durably, this law is considered an important understanding of the evolution of the universe. By equating disappearance of differences in temperature with disppearance in order, this law becomes as the 'entropy principle' the antithesis of a final world view.
There are innumerable possibilities to distribute ten litres of water to ten identical ten-litre-tubs. The even distribution to all tubs certainly distinguishes itself from all other distributions. (There are already ten possibilities of pouring all the water to one single tub, and none of these possibilities is less arbitrary than the other nine). Ifamount_i is used to represent the amount of water of tub i, the formula
1 / [1/amount_1 + ... + 1/amount_10]
has its maximum value when the water is evenly distributed among the ten tubs. If this formula is defined as 'distribution entropy', then the even distribution is the one with the maximum 'distribution entropy'.
In a thermally isolated solid, innumerable temperature distributions are possible at a given thermal energy. The question arises whether all these distributions are equally arbitrary or whether some distributions are less arbitrary than others. Even if all rules by which such temperature distributions can be ordered according to their arbitrariness depend themselves on arbitrary premises, the even distribution distinguishes itself from all other distributions independently of such premises.
According to the 'entropy principle' exactly this temperature distribution, the least arbitrary, is considered the most disordered one. This is maybe the oddest inconsistency of the modern scientific world view and shows how arbitrarily notions such as order, disorder and chaos can be used. If the facts underlying the second law of thermodynamics suggest a statement about order or disorder, it is this one: nature has a tendency towards the highest useful order. A temperature distribution of a solid differing from the even distribution can in the context of the surroundings be more highly ordered than the even distribution. But as soon as the solid is thermally isolated from these surroundings, the previous temperature distribution becomes as arbitrary as anyone else.
The 'entropy principle' shows clearly that scientific dogmas in the same way as religious dogmas hardly can be refuted by empirical data. According to common sense an interstellar nebula is less ordered than a planetary system. Nevertheless, from the 'entropy principle' follows the contrary. It also follows that a just hatched chick is less ordered than a raw egg, as at a constant surrounding temperature only processes can happen in the egg where entropy (disorder) increases.
Also the obvious increase in ordered structures during evolution cannot refute the 'entropy principle'. The earth is not a closed system but receives energy from outside, almost 100 percent from the sun. In order to save the 'entropy principle' it is postulated that disorder on the sun has been increasing more than order has been increasing on earth.
Chance and Probability
The 'entropy principle' is a consequence of a world view where blind chance reigns over the world. If the behaviour of the parts of a complex system depends solely on chance, there can be only a decrease in order. A big weakness of modern science is the inability to deal properly with probabilities.
Statistics and theory of probabilities have produced many complicated mathematical theories, but when probability reasonings are to be applied for concrete problems e.g. in evolution theory, biochemistry or medicine, in many cases, more importance is attached to prejudices than to empirical facts and logical reasoning.
Simple considerations about probabilty show that Darwinism cannot explain evolution. The
probability that we might throw 100 sixes with a set of 100 dice, is so low that it could safely be excluded under these conditions: since solidification of the earth's surface it would have been tried once a second on every square metre. It doesn't even matter, if we assume that it would have been tried in the same way on each ten planets of each 10 billion suns of 10 billion galaxies.
The simplest bacteria and viruses are so complex, that the probability for their random emergence is much lower than in the above example, even if all the necessary constituents are available in the right proportion. The principle of reasoning by which such a random emergence is considered possible can be explained by means of the 100 dice. If we assume that with every dice, with which a six has been thrown once, thereafter only a six can be thrown, then the result of a six with all dice can be achieved in about 30 trials. Many different models can be worked out to explain the possibility of the 100 thrown sixes, but all of them are based on finality: depending on the result which they should explain, the models restrict the chance in such a way that the result can be conceived as possible.
If it cannot be denied that the probability for random emergence of a system (e.g. a living organism) is unrealistically low, the system is taken apart to smaller and smaller sub-systems until random emergence gets realistic. But it is ignored that the probability for the whole system is calculated by multiplying the probabilities for the emergence of all systems from their respective sub-systems. Reductionist causal laws do not explain why sub-systems which are useful for the whole reproduce themselves instead of disappearing after having appeared by chance.
In artificial intelligence hypotheses similar to those of Darwinism have been refuted in practice. Even in the case of relatively simple problems, the exponential growth of combinations makes it impossible to find a solution by trials. Whether one computer calculates one day or 10 billion computers calculate 10 billion years is often irrelevant. But the creation of a living organism represents not a relatively simple but a big problem. All reductionist explanations of evolution are wrong. Either the probability for the emergence of complex structures is evaluated in a completely unrealistic way, or there are some hidden principles of finality.
Causal and Final Laws of Nature
Causal laws of nature can be subdivided into deterministic and probabilistic ones. The laws of dice are causal, but they are not deterministic, they are probabilistic. The laws of the planetary orbits are, at least in the short term, deterministic. In a system explainable by causality the further development depends only on present states and effects. Neither the past, provided that no causal effects reach to the present, nor the future affect the system. Because actions at a distance are an essential principle of nature, it is sensible to interpret 'causality' as interpreted in classical physics and not to restrict its meaning to 'local causality' as in relativity theory. The causal effect of the sun's radiation on earth is local, but the effect of gravity is as any action at a distance non-local.
If the development of a system does not depend solely on present states and effects, but the present behaviour of the system can only be understood by relating it to a higher order, it is an example of final laws of nature. The higher order can be a (non-causal) relation of the system to the (own) past, it can appear in the system in the future or in a higher system in the present or future.
The development of the earth's orbit and climate is causally not determined in the long term, but depends on many coincidences. Developments having very different results are possible. So two developments are conceivable, which according to causal laws are equally probable: one development leads to the extinction of all higher forms of life and the other is good for further evolution. If the coincidences leading to the second development happen more likely, it is an example of final laws of nature. Coincidences which happened at the origin of the earth can be in relation with events happening hundreds of millions years later. The more important the finality, the longer the times over which final laws are effective. In the same way, animals and humans plan in broad outline over longer periods than in detail (and do not always keep to plans).
If a successful gambler has more luck than he should have according to the laws of probability, this must be explained by final laws. Final laws of nature, apart from selective perception, are decisively responsible that persons find their prejudices often confirmed. If a woman believes that a man cannot stand her, the probability gets increased that the man leaves a place by chance, as soon as the woman appears. The conviction that God has good reasons to punish increases the probability of an unpleasant experience.
Also the effect of believing, hoping and praying is based on finality. Many parapsychological phenomena, e.g. extrasensory perception which can be verified afterwards, can be easily explained by final laws of nature. A person with a persecution complex regularly may become suspicious and look back 'by chance', exactly when the situation could actually suggest a persecution.
It also becomes understandable that a leader of a sect gets convinced of the end of the world. Let us assume a leader with a strong relation to triangles and birds: <He is thinking about the end of the world, when he sees three birds forming a triangle. In another direction he also sees three birds forming a triangle. If he catches sight of a further triangle of birds in a third direction and all triangles together form bigger triangle, the leader of the sect certainly will get convinced of the nearby end of the world.>
That repair enzymes are advantageous to living cells cannot be denied. But if the origin of such enzymes is explained by this advantage, the explanation is based not on reductionist causal laws but on finality. In the same way, every attempt to explain evolution by a tendency of genes (or other units) to spread is based on finality. A reductionist causal explanation must derive what seems to us a tendency to spread from physical and chemical laws.
Mechanical and Living Systems
An essential difference between mechanical and living systems consists in dealing with obstructions. Little defects of computers and of fully automated systems can lead to a complete breakdown, which can be repaired only from outside. Instead, living systems such as cities, anthills, trees and earthworms show indifference to little obstructions and have regenerative powers from inside.
If a mechanical calculator multiplies two numbers, it is nonsense to speak about perception of the two numbers or of the result by the calculator. Even if a computer is programmed to recognize objects, this has nothing to do with perception in the original sense. An output such as "this is a triangle" is produced from the input in the same mechanistic way as the result of the calculator from the corresponding numbers.
A robot which regularly fills up with electricity at a wall socket, does not perceive the socket. A prerequisite of perception is a perceiving subject. The behaviour of the robot is only mechanistically determined, though it is purposeful. However, this doesn't mean that mechanistic laws are enough to explain purposeful behaviour, since the origin of such robots cannot be expained by such laws.
A lot is written about computer systems with learning capacity, but this is no real (creative) learning capacity. It is limited to a predetermined range and consists primarily in adapting parameters and collecting further data. Uncompromising reductionists find themselves compelled to attribute consciousness to computers. The many obvious and fundamental differences between the brain and computers are ignored.
Arguments against Reductionism
Many philosophers and scientists of the past were amazed at the complexity of life. Nowadays we know that this complexity is much higher than past philosophers could ever have dreamt. Living beings are structured at all levels down to the subatomic. Simple living cells surpass in complexity whole factories. Even so, many scientists think that random thermal motions (with energy minimization and entropy maximization) together with other currently accepted physical laws are enough to explain life.
How impossible it is that random thermal motions determine the happenings in living cells would become obvious, if one created an enlarged model of the DNA helix with a helix diameter of 50 cm, and if persons had to take over the functions of the many enzymes which are involved in the DNA replication. The whole human DNA (of one single cell), which normally is tightly packed, would be at such an enlargement about 500'000 km long. This model would also show how improbable it is that transcription factors could find a given DNA position, if there were only random motions and if recognition of the position were possible only by direct contact. Because of the enzyme size, this improbability cannot be hidden behind the Heisenberg uncertainty relations.
The central dogma of molecular biology, stating that the flow of information leads only from DNA over RNA to proteins, has been proven more and more an erroneous belief. Living cells are not fully determined by DNA. Nucleotides are able to form sequences themselves. RNA can be transcribed into DNA. Pieces of RNA can work as enzymes. The DNA is not a dead memory. There are 'jumping' pieces which change their position in the DNA. The human DNA consists primarily of sequences of varying size which can appear innumerable times, or of other sequences which do not serve as genetic information.
DNA mutations do not occur everywhere with the same freqency. Otherwise a fatal mutation in a vital protein would be much more probable than a mutation e.g. having an effect on the length of the neck. Moreover, evolutionarily older sequences (e.g. ubiquitin) are less susceptible to mutations. However, according to reductionism the probability of mutations should not depend on the evolutionary age or on the effects of the mutations. If one explains the different susceptibility to mutations by repair enzymes, the question arises how these enzymes can know which mutations they should tolerate and which they should not.
The mechanisms leading to the transcription of a gene are very complex. Transcription factors, which bind to the DNA at a great distance from the gene, can strongly influence the transcription, and that's difficult to explain by reductionist laws. Not even the assumption that proteins are fully coded by the DNA is true. The genetic code includes twenty amino acids. Apart from these amino acides many proteins contain other amino acids and other components, which are not coded. The genetic code is not universally valid as it was initially assumed. Several exceptions have been found.
Genes of plants and animals regularly contain non-coding sequences. These introns must be cut out from the RNA copies of the genes. The information indicating which regions represent no code and must be removed is not coded. Some introns even cut out themselves. In several cases, RNA nucleotides are changed, deleted or inserted (RNA editing) before translation starts. In order to produce correct proteins, ribosomes sometimes skip nucleotides instead of translating them. Even from the translated sequences sometimes parts are cut out before protein folding starts. All this is not coded!
After transcription, many amino acid sequences efficiently take on a stable form. Biotechnologically produced, random sequences do not fold to a protein. The common explanation is that proteins have been selected during evolution to fold properly. Yet, if only a very small proportion of possible sequences take on a stable form, only this small proportion can undergo selection of protein function, and the probability that random mutations destroy stability is very high. Furthermore, it is improbable that a protein, selected for a stable form, also acts as a catalyst for complex functions. On the other hand, there are related proteins of similar form and function, whose amino acid sequences have drifted apart substantially. There are even cases where the completely different amino acid sequences, corresponding to different reading frames of a given RNA sequence (frameshift), result in correct proteins or parts of proteins.
For an enzyme to develop in a cell, various specific tasks (e.g. the complex transcription initiation) have to be carried out. If every task required a specific enzyme type, every enzyme type would require several other types, something that is logically impossible. One concludes that many enzymes are able to carry out several tasks. This hardly can be explained by reductionist causal laws, as even one task depends on various conditions, such as e.g. 'allosteric' changes in the enzyme form.
Apart from the logical impossibility of explaining even the behaviour of simple living cells in a reductionist way, there is a logical impossibility to explain evolution of life in this way. Far from spreading their genes very efficiently, many animals have other objectives. The Darwinian explanation of the excessive plumage of peacocks is: mutations increasing or decreasing the plumage of the males appear continuously, and the preference of the females results in a selection. This explanation is based on the premise that females prefer apriori males with excessive plumage. According to causal reductionist laws however, such a preference, which represents a complex perception and behaviour pattern, requires itself mutations in order to appear. And these mutations cannot be explained by any advantage, leading to their spread in a population.
Many animals hibernate. Hibernation is a complex phenomenon consisting of various components, from cellular metabolic processes to several behaviour patterns. These components are linked together only insofar as they serve to the same purpose. Therefore we can exclude that mutations responsible for one component of hibernation enable all the other components besides. (That a single mutation may switch on or off all the components is a different problem.) DNA mutations which cause animals to build a usable nest just at the right time must have some complexity. Even under the completely unrealistic assumption that four point mutations are enough to cause such a behaviour, the appearance of exactly these mutations is extremly improbable. If yet the appearance of one single component of hibernation is extremly improbable, then we can exclude that all components might have evolved only by genetic mutations. Nevertheless, hibernation evolved independently in many species.
Living beings never could adapt so promptly to new conditions (e.g. climatic changes), if corresponding (dominant) mutations had to appear at first. The spread of the ability of adults to make use of lactose has paralleled the spread of dairy farming. The advantage of this ability is certainly not big enough to explain its wide spead in only a few thousands years by selection.
Spacial Extension of Elementary Particles
The size of many objects is not given apriori, but depends on how it is defined. The size of the earth depends on whether the atmosphere is considered part of the earth or not. If yes, it is difficult to determine the size because of the continuous transition from atmosphere to empty space. Such problems become even more acute in the case of elementary particles. Their size is measured by their physical effects on other particles.
The measurement of atoms by means of particles interacting only with the atomic nucleus results in a different size than the measurement by means of particles interacting with the electron shell. We cannot decide apriori, whether the effect on other particles is a consequence of the spacial extension or of an action at a distance of the measured particle. A charged atom influences electrons in a region which is much larger than the 'actual' atom size. If we define spacial extension by gravitational effects, all particles have infinite size and gravitation is not based on actions at a distance.
That in many cases the distinction between spacial extension and action at a distance is arbitrary, we can see in considering hypothetical elementary particles: <Every particle causes an attraction which is inversely proportional to the second power of the distance from its center, and a repulsion inversely proportional to the fourth power. As there is no limit to the number of such particles to be pressed into a given volume, every determination of the particle size is arbitrary, maybe with the exception of the sphere where repulsion equals attraction.>
In order to define particle centre and extension, an effect of the particle (which also can be a combination of several effects) is needed. Particles having no distinguished central point are conceivable. Such a particle may show a similar effect in a central region. If the effect decreases continuously with growing distance from the central region, the spacial extension of the particle cannot be determined without arbitrariness. If the effect is quantifiable in space, it makes sense to define as particle centre the point which is calculated from the distribution of the effect in the same way as the centre of gravity is calculated from a density distribution, even in the case that this center cannot be determined experimentally. If the particle defining effect is only a probabilistic one, the extension can be defined only probabilistically, the centre however exactly.
Spacial extension of photons can be defined at least probabilistically. Photons are neither material points nor waves. They have more reality and their behaviour is more complex than assumed by quantum mechanics. As mathematical formulas do not precede reality, there is no need to assume that all properties of photons can be described completely by simple formulas. The spacial extension of photons can depend on several factors (e.g. on frequency, density of photons). Photons tend to appear and travel in groups. For circular polarisation at least two photons travelling together are needed. One must distinguish between interference of a photon with itself and interference between photons. Actions at a distance can explain conservation of energy in all cases of interference. If a balloon filled with an incompressible liquid is compressed at one position, it expands at the same time at another postion.
It is unreasonable, despite atomic bonds by electron pairing (e.g. in a water molecule), to stick to an atomic model in which electrons orbit the nucleus in a similar way planets orbit a sun. Modern physics gives the impression that electrons and other elementary particles can only be conceived of as either waves or particles, just because waves and particles can easily be described mathematically. Electrons (like living beings) show different behaviour in different experiments. Electrons can appear and disappear under conservation principles. Their complex behaviour relies not only on a material (energetical) basis but also on non-material units which shall be called PSYCHONS.
The Nature of Life
Essential characteristics of higher forms of life are:
According to reductionism these characteristics are only anthropomorphic images for properties of highly organized dead matter. Although reductionists claim that these properties can be explained by reductionist causal laws, their explanations are essentially based on finality and are similar to this one: <The ability of imitation is advantageous in evolution. Therefore it spreads necessarily after having appeared by chance. The fact that it exists now, proves that it appeared at least once in the past and has been spreading since then.> The complexity of this ability would become obvious by the attempt to construct a robot with such an ability.
There is no other argument for the belief that reductionist causal laws would lead to the above mentioned characteristics of higher forms of life than the prejudice that such laws are enough to explain the world. A simple alternative is to assume that these characteristics are fundamental, and to explain evolution with them.
Subjective experience and perception need as a prerequisite individual consciousness. The transition from (animal) consciousness to (human) self-consciousness is continuous. As babies we had no ('actual') self-consciousness. If we attribute consciousness to animals, is there any reason why we should not attribute consciousness to living cells with a uniform purposeful behaviour such as e.g. cells of the immune system? And isn't the purposeful behaviour of enzymes in vivo and in vitro strong evidence that enzymes can be animated beings with primitive consciousness?
Humans and animals perceive with different senses a large region of their surroundings. Without such a perception it would be impossible to survive. Also unicellular organisms can orientate themselves and move purposefully. Even the motions of many subcellular units such as enzymes, proteins (e.g. transcription factors), RNA and DNA molecules cannot be explained solely by entropy maximization and energy minimization.
The astonishing ability of carbon atoms to build hollow balls (fullerenes), the ability of water molecules to build elaborate crystals, or the catalytic power of atoms and simple molecules, all this can be (better) explained if we attribute to the atoms and molecules primitive perception of their surroundings and purposeful behaviour. If enzymes are conscious beings, it seems obvious that also simple molecules and atoms can be conscious beings.
The emergence of chemical oscillations or spacial structures in an initially homogenous chemical medium is very improbable according to classical thermodynamics. Such effects depend on chemical reactions, in which energy minimization leads to no preferred direction. Whereas entropy maximization should prevent such effects, they can be explained by assuming that molecules copy the behaviour of neighbouring molecules.
Water can be cooled down to temperatures below its freezing point (supercooling), before it freezes suddenly at a non predictable moment. The lower the amount of water, the more it can undergo supercooling. Such a behaviour is fully understandable by assuming that one water molecule starts freezing and the neighbouring molecules imitate it. There is an analogous situation, when a person approaches a flock of birds. The first bird noticing the person determines the moment when all birds fly off.
Memory exists within many different forms of life. It has been detected not only within unicellular beings but also within marcomolecules. So the current reactivity of neurotransmitter-gated ion channels can depend on the past: a long activation by corresponding neurotransmitters leads to a desensitization of the channel for some time. And if the mean temperature to which water can undergo supercooling depends on the initial temperature of the water (Mpemba effect), this also suggests a memory of the water molecules.
Psychons and their Evolution
If you switch on a torch, photons appear, but there are no photons in the torch in the way there are bullets in a gun. While the necessary energy exists 'actually' in the torch, the units capable of organizing energy quanta in the form of photons exist only 'potentially', before the torch is switched on. Such non-material units shall be called PSYCHONS. There is a continuity from primitive psychons, which are responsible for the behaviour of elementary particles, to human psychons (souls), which have evolved from primitive psychons over billions of years.
For a person to be born, what is required is a human soul which has evolved by reincarnation. Human souls are reborn with increased probability in a similar environment. This ENVIRONMENT CONTINUITY can easily be verified empirically (e.g. by examining persons with pronounced rare characteristics). A manifestation of this principle is that persons are often in contact with persons they have also been in contact with in former lives. Environment continuity is also valid for animal souls. It is essential when a species splits into subspecies. It stands to reason that environment continuity is valid not only for human and animal souls but for all psychons.
Psychons are the 'units of evolution'. For genes or living beings, if they were not more than highly structured dead matter, it would make no sense to aspire to reproduction and at the same time to lose their identity because of evolutionary adaption and further development. Psychons do not change their identity during evolution (as human souls do not during ontogenesis). So we all (our souls) should have been elementary particles billions of years ago. During evolution our psychons (souls) have been responsible for the behaviour of atoms, molecules, enzymes, living cells, primitive neurons, primitive animals, ..., monkeys and of our ancestors. Death is a prerequisite for birth and evolution.
Psychons are indivisible units, but matter is divisible in most cases. Enzymes can form a complex, which begins to work after having reached a destination in the cell. The question is whether there is a psychon for the whole complex or whether all participating enzymes have their own psychons. There is the same question for all levels of complexity. Proteins often consist of parts which rapidly take a certain form whereas the whole protein is folding slowly. These parts are made of amino acids and the amino acids consist of atom groups and atoms, which themselves are composite.
It is certainly not possible in every case to find out which complexes are coordinated and dominated by single psychons. There are analogous problems in the context of human groups and hierarchical organizations. For instance it is not always possible for listeners to find out whether an interpretation of a music group is determined by all or by one member only. The bigger music groups get, the more important is a higher coordination. In a little orchestra this function can be taken over by an orchestra musician. From increasing orchestras emerged by specialisation pure conductors.
For a concert with several orchestras, which all have their own conductor, several variants are possible. 1) The conductors coordinate each other and their own musicians. 2) One of the conductors coordinates the other conductors in addition to his own musicians. 3) One of the conductors coordinates the musicians of all the orchestras, and the other conductors become redundant. 4) One of the conductors takes over the coordination of all conductors, if one of his musicians takes over his former function as a conductor. 5) A specialist from outside takes over the coordination of all conductors. 6) A specialist from outside takes over the coordination of all musicians, and all conductors become redundant.
All these variants are possible for psychons. Also relations analogous to the one between horse and rider or between shepherd, dog and herd are possible on different complexity levels. An RNA nucleotide consists of three parts which are evolutionarily older than the whole nucleotide: 1) RNA base, 2) ribose and 3) chain of phosphate groups. RNA nucleotides have several functions in living cells. For instance they supply energy. It seems obvious that the same molecules can be animated by different psychon types. The environment continuity maintains order. For psychons which animate matter of such a low complexity level there should be no difference between inactivity and death. (In the case of humans the connection between soul and body with its psychons is so complex, that it can be built up only during ontogenesis).
The maturation of a protein from the corresponding amino acid chain can happen in the following way: <In important (evolutionarily older) sequences of the chain, amino acids become active, that is they get animated by psychons. Because of environment continuity these psychons are the ones which have built up the same protein (or the same sequence of different proteins) innumerable times. These psychons build up protein parts which can be animated as a whole by other psychons which then build up the complete protein.> So it also becomes comprehensible that RNA sequences (introns) are able to cut out themselves or that order is maintained during DNA recombination.
During evolution, psychon animated molecules have been joining together in always bigger units. Animated molecules such as amino acids and nucleotides began sometime to form chains. By specialization psychons emerged which dominated such chains. Proteins are conceivable which replicate by adding corresponding amino acids to one chain end, until an identical protein can split off. Reproduction by base pairing of two complementary strands is even more efficient. The invention of translation, a complex symbiosis of various ribosomal psychons, was certainly one of the most essential steps during the evolution of life.
The Human Soul
The extremely complex human soul is the only psychon that we can know not just from outside but also from inside. This subjective inside aspect is a prerequisite for our experiences of the world. All feelings, perceptions and understanding are only projections onto our human souls. Objective knowledge not depending on the subjective inside aspect is impossible. Objectivity cannot be more than ideal intersubjectivity.
Determining spacial extension of human souls constitutes a similar problem as determining spacial extension of elementary particles. After death and before incarnation, souls exist only potentially and cannot be located in space. There is some evidence suggesting that the soul of a still living person can start a new incarnation. Then the development of the embryo and (in rare cases) baby is paralleled by a disappearing vitality of the person animated by the same soul, and it seems plausible that preventing a dying person forcefully from dying can lead to the death of a baby animated by the same soul.
That a single soul is able to animate two persons, one dying and the other coming into being, even thousands of kilometres apart, seems to suggest that souls cannot be located in space. But a soul can be located by its interaction with the humun body. The by far strongest interaction occurs with the brain. When we move a finger we do not affect the finger but neurons in the brain. A pain in our foot we do not perceive directly but only in the brain. Optical effects we perceive neither directly nor on the retina but as neural states. These states are the result of a complex process, starting with photoreceptor cells.
Brain research has shown that optical attributes such as form, movement and colour are processed in various regions of the brain, though an object appears to the observer as a unity. It is the soul which perceives the states of different brain regions as a consistent picture of the object. Perceiving form and colour of a triangle in different regions is no more astonishing than perceiving odour and colour of a drink in different regions.
Colours can be described by a spectrum. The processing of colours in the brain can be investigated. The sensation of a colour is accompanied by a state of neuron groups. The death of involved neuron groups can lead to the loss of the colour sensation. Nevertheless, this sensation is totally different from the corresponding neural state. It requires the memory of the soul and is a diffuse mixture of memories involving the same or similar neural states. In the case of red this mixture consists of (neural states accompanying) blood, sunset, fruit and much more, in the case of blue primarily of the sky and in the case of green primarily of the flora.
Only because of our past experiences we know, what corresponds in 'reality' to the states of our brain. The three-dimensional optical picture of a bottle in front of us we subjectively perceive, is made up of several subjective components. These components are each a diffuse mixture of memories of similar perceptions (or corresponding neural states). Because of these memories we know how to move our hand in order to touch the bottle.
Pleasure and pain have their basis in finality. Neural states in connection with surviving and offspring (which increases the probability of being reincarnated soon after death) lead to a pleasant, neural states in connection with death to an unpleasant subjective experience. Pleasure and pain do not rely on the neural states themselves, but on the memories with which these states are associated in the soul. If a neural state normally associated with pleasure is caused artificially (e.g. by means of psychiatric drugs), the person can experience pleasure. But the more frequently this state is caused artificially, the weaker becomes the original association of the state with actual positive events.
Cutting the lines of communication between the two sides of a brain (split brain patients) has incredibly few consequences. Primarily it is the soul which continues maintaining the coordination of the two sides. The regenerative powers after brain injuries show that neurons and neuron groups can take over new functions and that the connection between soul and brain is not rigid but flexible. In the same way as the body outside the brain is not connected directly to the brain, there are also regions inside the brain which are only indirectly connected to the soul.
Under the assumption that the soul is located in the brain, weaker interactions of the soul with the rest of the body are a matter of actions at a distance. An influence of the soul on the immune system and on healing and recovery is plausible. Perception of one's own body not mediated through the brain as well as extrasensory perception cannot be excluded. It could also be a matter of soul actions at a distance, if a successful salesman sells to a person something the person neither needs nor wishes.
Empirical Relevance of Psychons
If one explains the emergence of hollow balls from each 60 carbon atoms by assuming that carbon atoms can be animated under certain conditions by psychons which are able to form such balls, then the objection is obvious that this is a grotesque, not verifiable ad-hoc-explanation. Yet if reductionist causal laws cannot explain the high industrial production efficiency of such fullerenes, there must be another explanation.
Unlike the psychons of atoms and simple molecules, the more complex psychons of enzymes, cells and animals evolved over billions of years on earth. Because of the limits in space and other resources, only a limited number of every kind of psychons could evolve. This limitation is empirically relevant. Unlike the output of chemical production processes, the output of biotechnological production processes cannot always be increased just as one likes.
There are dominant alleles (gene variants) for properties which only rarely appear in animal populations. If selective breeding or another selection results in a large spread of such an allele, it often becomes recessive. Such a dominance inversion contradicts modern genetics, but can easily be explained by the fact that the number of psychons needed for the rare properties to appear are limited. So it also becomes understandable that the rarer and more pronounced properties of animals are, the more difficult is their reproduction. If dog breeders breed the same race, they compete not only for the same dog souls but also for many other psychons.
Both the potentialities of gene technology and its dangers are vastly overestimated. The possibility of reviving, by means of DNA, animals which became extinct a long time ago exists not even theoretically. The pychons which built up and animated these animals very probably evolved further and all together they are certainly not available any more. If a species becomes extinct, the souls can be born within related species. The more distant the new species is from the old, the more lives are needed to reach fertile age.
World population cannot continue to grow as it has in recent decades. The strong population increase above all in this (the 20th) century depends primarily on the fact that surviving has become much easier. The duration of the world population growth as of any exponential growth in nature is rather short. There is more and more evidence for an end. Infertility spreads. Birth rates adjust to the death rates in more and more regions of the world.
The number of human souls is in the order of 10 to the power 10. The species of primates which has led to humans is directly or indirectly responsible for the extinction of all other species having evolved further than chimpanzees. Populations grew by slaughtering other populations. Sparing women and taking them over facilitated to annex the souls of the slaughtered. Population estimates for humans and hominids of the past are based on invalid premises.
Essential human properties or their predispositions such as character, social behaviour, intelligence, talents, likings, aversions and phobias are given by the soul. It is not astonishing that somebody who died in his last life in an overcrowded cattle wagon after long suffering gets claustrophobia e.g. in an overcrowed cable railway. Psychoanalysis explaining normal and abnormal human behaviour by child experiences is in principle false. In most cases the former lives are more decisive. Nevertheless psychoanalysis is also not completely wrong insofar as strongly influencing events of former lives are often experienced in childhood: harmless being touched can be experienced (diffusely) as a sexual humiliation or a dentist's chair (diffusely) as a torture rack.
In psychoanalysis and regression therapy final laws of nature play an important role. From more or less conscious memories and imaginations of the patient together with the imaginations and expectations of the therapist emerge stories which sound so logical that they appear to patient and therapist as a plausible explanation of a problem such as a phobia. If however the therapist is psychologically stronger, it can happen that he gets out of the patient not much more than his own expectations.
Telepathy, hypnosis and psychokinesis can be explained by an action at a distance of a human soul on other psychons with a possible participation of final laws of nature. Psychokinesis should most likely be possible, if coordination of normally uncoordinated movements of atoms and molecules can be enough to produce a macroscopic movement.
In this respect bending a spoon or setting in motion a body with small friction in a slightly downwards direction are conceivable. Also influencing the probabilistic behaviour of photons, electrons and of other particles should be possible. Hypnotic effects and above all final laws of nature distort the results of many scientific investigations.
Predecessors of the Psychon Theory
The psychon theory as any other theory has predecessors. The belief in reincarnation is very old and has existed in several civilizations. Many elements of the theory such as the fundamental distinction between 'actual' and 'potential' are already part of the philosophy of Aristotle. The evolution theory of Lamarck and the monadology of Leibniz could be seen as the most important predecessors: in important respects psychons can be described as Lamarckian monads. The psychon theory can also be regarded as a quantized version of a theory of morphogenetic fields: the psychons are the quanta of the fields.
Comments (on errors) please send to theauthor and translater of the german original, which was written in the first half of 1996 and published on the internet in December 1997.
If you are interested in (scientific) texts supporting non-mainstream ideas, see:
A final devastating argument against reductionism
The information of the genetic code of HIV is less than 2.5 kilobyte. Computer science has shown how little this is. This genetic information can never be enough information for a virus to survive.
The part of the human genetic code which is used ( about 1 to 10%) can be compressed (at least) to about 10 or 100 megabyte. In many cases this information is even used in such an inefficient way that the information which is used to produce a protein is many times higher than the information which is stored in the final amino acid sequence of the protein.
There are hundreds of different enzyme types and hundreds of biochemical pathways in one single cell. There are hundreds of different celltypes in the human body.
Look at the ontogenesis (computers do not grow)!
Look at the complexity of the immune system!
Look at the repair mecanisms at all levels!
Look at ...!
Look at the complexity of the human body!
Look at the complexity of our brain!
Look at the complexity of the eye!
Look at ...!
Look at the human powers of perception!
Look at the human learning capacity!
Look at the ability of language!
Look at ...!
Look at persons like W.A.Mozart!
Look at ...!
To assume that all the necessary information can be stored in 10 or 100 MB is no better than to assume that a little bottle can contain many many litres of water.
Reductionists have resolved the problem of the missing genetic information by an argument, which is based on a famous philosophical error. They confuse the category of information size with the category of combination number.
If some information is condensed to a 1 million bit, one needs a million bit to store it. It is nonsense to argue that 20 bits are enough because 20 bits give more than a million (2^20) combinations. One must clearly distinguish between the information size and the number of combinations that can be stored in a memory of a given size.
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