Taking a cue from quantum physics itself—and it is important to understand this, for I am basing my arguments not upon mererly my own conjecture, but on conclusions physics itself ineluctably makes about the nature of reality—beyond a certain point the reduction of the physical literally stops being emprical. Beyond a certain point physical reality can no longer be sensed, because it has simply been reduced too far (it is too small). Beyond a certain point physical reality can no longer be said to possess mass, which means it does not, in the emprical sense, occupy space—it is volume-less; it no longer exists dimensionally, and thus it also posssesses no temporal value. In other words, empirically speaking, it exists no where and at no time. Physical reality at this point cannot be verified empirically, but is only rationally inferred.
The evidence for the rational assumption of reality’s existence beyond the place of physicality—beyond the senses—is the mathematics, which are a purely abstract cognitive contrivance…that’s the whole point of math. Math, like music notes on paper, implies the existence of physical reality, but it is not physical reality itself. For if it was, then it would no longer be math, it’s as simple as that.
The effects of these non-emprical yet existent objects, which are referred to as quanta, are said to possess rational existence because they mathematically correlate. In other words, the effects on the physical universe of the quanta are predicted by the math. When atoms are smashed and certain effects recorded, the effects occur in ways that the mathematical rendering of quanta predict, with sufficient repeatability, and this is how, not via direct empirical observation, the quanta (massless, timeless, spaceless particles of reality) are said to objectively exist.
And here we see that empiricism and objectivity are completely distinct. Quantum physics, if we accept its validity, proves that reality does not need to by physical to be be utterly objective, actual, existent, and real.
I have no reason to believe that the mathematics are spurious, (though I understand that by the nature of quantum physics there is always some endemic degree of uncertainty, and this is likely because mathematics is essentially the breaking up of infinity into units, which makes absolute claims ultimately impossible, but science nevertheless is able to get close enough). I’m sure the math is perfectly functional; I have no doubt that it works, and I have no problem assuming that quanta exist and act the way science describes and accepting the mathematical context.
That isn’t my point.
I have no problem with science when it functions as science, and not as philosophy; I do not doubt the mathematical data…believe me, I haven’t the abstract skills to know the difference between good or bad calculus—that’s well beyond my skill set. I’d no sooner argue with Stephen Hawking about the veracity of mathematics than I would a pilot about the veracity of flight. My problem here is the abject conflation of that which is rationally inferred with that which is empirically validated. Quantum physics is simply not empirical science, even by science’s own definitions (though utterly absent science’s admission, which is hypocritical). The fact that quantum particles must be rationally inferred through the abstracton of mathematics doesn’t necessarily negate the validity of the claims that they nevertheless objectively exist.
My goal here is to show that at some point we must admit that existence—that that which can be said to objectively be—is not strictly a matter of physical, empirical proof, but also, if not ultimately, a matter of reason, and reason is cognitive, and cognition is consciousness. In other words, at some point we must admit that it is the observer, the Conscious Ones, who must declare what is real and what is not; what exists and what doesn’t; what is true and what is lie. Quantum physics is evidence that objective realty does not exist outside of man—or specifically, his consciousness; his ability to conceptualize himself, his environment, and their relative relationships, but wholly includes him, affirms him, necessitates him, relies upon him, and heeds him. This is not sollipsism, but it is, at root, an acknowledgement that reason—rational consistency—can be a plumb-line for truth and realtiy, not only empiricism. Existence and truth do not end at the limit of observation or sensory experience. Quantum physics shows us that just because you cannot observe that something is there, you can still reason that it is there, and that that reason suffices as objective evidence that it is indeed there. One does not, and cannot, sense it is there—for it is utterly beyond observation—yet one may still objectively know that it is actually there; actually true. And this is, again, because of reason. Reason, which is cognitive, which is conscious, is a means, and I would even argue is the fundamental means, of accessing objective realtiy and objective truth.