David Bohm and His Theory of the Implicit Order
Deceased in 1992, David Bohm (3) was one of the main American physicists with deep knowledge of The Quantum Theory in 20th century. He worked at the University of California (Berkeley), at the Institute Princeton of Advanced Studies, and as professor of Theoretical Physics at the Birkbeck College University of London. During his first years of study, he also acquired knowledge on history of philosophy and science.
According to David Bohm, the universe is in a continuous process of evolution, pondering that the acceptance of his theory would take the humanity to pass for very great implications. Bohm wrote some books, but the main one is Wholeness and the Implicate Order. Other books were written with the contribution of B. J. Hiley, J. Krishnamurti and F. David Peat. Moreover, he published numerous articles in scientific magazines.
Developed in the decade of 80, his theory of the universe is known as Theory of the Implicit Order (the holographic universe). It has an objective, which is to explain the bizarre conduct of sub-atomic particles that the physicists of The Quantum Theory did not get to explain it. Basically, two sub-atomic particles that have reacted one to each other "answer instantaneity to the movements of one in relation to the other, any that is the distance and the time that separate them", fact this proven by Alain Aspect’s experience , that was done posterior to David Bohm´s theory.
Bohm suggested that sub-quantum forces and particles, still not observed by the science, seem to be acting in the threshold of the matter. This underlying force could be the consequence of a deeper dimension of the reality. His belief was that the space-time could really be part of a still deeper objective reality, which he called of Implicit Order. Inside the Implicit Order all is interlinked. Then, according to this theory, the sub-atomic particles would be acting as if they were amplifiers of the “information” contained in a quantum wave. Then, from these comments he constructed a new and controversial theory of the universe, a new model of reality.
Bohm based his theory on the scientific knowledge on holography, which bases itself in the interference of waves: if two sources of light are of different frequencies they will interfere one with the other, creating an interference pattern. Basically, a hologram is the detailed register of the wave length of the own light, that is, a dense repository of "information.” Thus, in a hologram, each small piece of the holographic film discloses the representative form of an entire three-dimensional object. By analogy, Bohm concluded that the Implicit Order behaves itself in similar way to a hologram.
With this understanding, Bohm extended his theory to an ultra-holistic cosmic vision, in which all the things are connected among themselves. In accordance with this principle, any individual element can contain "[…] detailed information on any other element in the universe.” The underlying central subject of Bohm´s theory is that "[…] the whole indivisible of the totality of the existence is part of an indivisible movement without frontiers.” His theory is saying to us, therefore, that all is involved with all. Thus, spoke Bohm himself. (3):
The real order (Implicit Order) was engraved in the complex movement of the electromagnetic fields, in the form of light waves. Such movement of light waves is present everywhere and in principle it involves the entire universe of space and time, in each region. The folding and the unfolding not only take place in the movement from the electromagnetic field, but also, in the other fields (electronic, proton, etc.). These fields obey the laws of the quantum mechanic giving origin to the discontinuity properties and non-locality. The totality of the folding and unfolding movements can be immensely extended beyond what discloses it to our comments. We call this totality with the name “holomovement.”
According to this theory, the holomovement acts inside a "multidimensional reality", which unfolds in independent sub-totalities (such as, the physical elements and the human being entities), with relative autonomy. For Bohm, the holomovement represents this "[…] incredible and unknown totality", being the "[…] fundamental base of all the matter.”
In other hand, the revealed world is part of what Bohm called the "explicit order", in contraposition to the “implicit order”, from which it derives or flows and, therefore, it is secondary. There is inside of the Implicit Order, "a totality of forms, which possess some sort of approximate recurrence (change), stability and separation." These are the forms that present themselves as our physical world.
Bohm suggests that, instead of thinking about particles as basic reality, the focus should be put in the discrete quanta of energy, similar to the particles in a continuous field. Based in this quantum field, Bohm, starting from the microcosm to macrocosm, unfolds the Implicit Order in three levels and explains them using the concepts of quantum field and continuous field. Inside these fields and in their interfaces it occurs the transference of "information" from the most simple to the most complex and, vice versa from the whole to the more simple in order to liven up, to guide and to organize the original quantum field. The holomovement gives energetic conditions to the particles to act in the three-dimensional world of the matter.
The Implicit Order permeates all. All that is and it will be in the universe is involved inside the Implicit Order. There is a special cosmic movement that puts into motion the process of enfolding and unfolding in the form of explicit order. This process of the cosmic movement, in feedback cycles, creates an infinite variety of forms and mentality. Bohm´s opinion is that the basic Cosmic Intelligence is involved in this process of experimentation and endless creation. This Being, the Cosmic Mind, is moving itself cyclically always and always forward, resulting an infinity of experienced beings (evolved beings).
The structural cosmic model sketched by Bohm includes a detailed examination of the following subjects: the Base of All Existence, the Matter, Consciousness and the Cosmic Apex. We go to summarize, in the following paragraphs, Bohm´s thought on the related subjects, the core of his model of the Implicit Order.
For Bohm, the base of all the existence is a special energy, which he calls it of "plenitude", an "[…] immense original source of energy.” This energy from this source is concentrated in a total and absolute movement that is the "holomovement.” The Implicit Order comes from the holomovement. In turn, it is from the Implicit Order that emanates the order in each perceivable aspect of the world (universal harmony) and, to the end, all the aspects integrate themselves in the indefinable and incommensurable holomovement, and also from them are emerging all the new sets. It is the flow of the manifested and interdependent matter in direction to consciousness.
With relation to the animate and inanimate matter, Bohm considers the particle as being the most essential block of construction of the matter. For him, the particle is basically an "[…] abstraction, which manifests itself to our senses.” The entire universe is made of matter, revealed by means of a totality of sets. These sets "act and interact according to an ordered series of folding and the unfolding steps that, in principle, permeate and interpenetrate one each other by means of the entire space", but Bohm always emphasizes that the explicit order is always derived and secondary. Bohm explain the dimensional showing the relation of two TV images of an aquarium, in which a fish is seen in a frontal image and by side in the other image, simultaneously. What it is seen is a "[…] relation between the images that appear in the two screens.” We know, Bohm affirmed that the aquarium two images are actualities that interact themselves, but they are not two different realities that act, independently. "On the contrary, they refer themselves to a unique present time, which is the common base of both.” For Bohm, this unique actuality is a superior dimensionality, since the television images are mere projections in two dimensions of a reality that exists in three dimensions, and that contains these two dimensional projections inside of it. Those projections are only abstractions; however, the "three-dimensional reality" is not "[…] none of these, on the contrary, it is something different from both images, something like a real nature that exists beyond both.”
With relation to the evolution in the universe, Bohm´s theory affirms that it exists – "[…] because the different grades of dimensions of reality that is already implicit in its structure.” Bohm uses the analogy of the seed being "informed" to produce a living plant. The same can be said of all living matter. "The life is involved in the totality and, even when it does not manifest itself of some form, it is implicit.” The holomovement is the base so much of the life as of the matter. There is no dichotomy.
Regarding consciousness, Bohm appraises that consciousness is more than information and brain; on contrary, it is the information that enters in the brain. For Bohm, consciousness "[…] involves science, attention, perception, the act of the knowledge and perhaps, until more.” Continuing, he says: consciousness can be "[…] described in terms of a series of movements.” Basically, "[…] a movement gives place to the next one, in which the context was implicit and now explicit itself, while that the content of the previous one (movement) became itself implicit.” Consciousness is an interchange: it is a feedback process, which results in an increasing accumulation of knowledge. Bohm also deals with Carl Jung’s collective conscience, calling it of collective consciousness of the humanity and gives greater signification of what is given to the individual consciousness. Enriching the collective conscience, the humanity, to the point that it accomplishes with success its spirituality, will walk integrally towards a larger dimension of the reality – the Cosmic Plenum. Bohm affirms that man has a special prominence in the universe and that this would be incomplete if there was no man to validate it (anthropocentrism).
Referring to the Cosmic Plenum, the highest level in the universe, Bohm mentions it as being the source of the non-manifested, of the Tenuous non-Manifested, something similar to the spirit, a moving entity, but still matter in the direction where it is a part of the Implicit Order. For Bohm, the Tenuous non-Manifested is an “active intelligence" superior to any "energy defined by thought.” Bohm directly affirms: "[…] there is a truth, the present time, a supreme being that can be reached by thought and this is intelligence, the sacred, ´the saint´.”
There are certain attributes that can be discerned from Bohm´s cosmic model. They are, the Order, the Intelligence, the Individualization, the Creativity and the sense of Perfection. In his work, Wholeness and the Implicate Order, already previously mentioned, Bohm studies these attributes in detail. We present them, to follow, in summary:
The order is the universal law that keeps all interlinked. It is the own cosmic energy that he also calls of the law of the holomovement. His point of view is that the Whole generates new "wholes" or interdependent systems.
The Intelligence is "purely active", nothing more being than the filtered consciousness, by means of which one gets the discernment. Bohm considers the thought as being a mechanic operation. It is the intelligence that turns relevant the mechanical process of the thought. He believes that, if the intelligence is an act of "non- conditioned perception”, then intelligence cannot be found in "[…] structures such as cells, molecules, atoms and elementary particles.” According to Bohm, the intelligence operation must be beyond any factors that can be enclosed in any known law. The "[…] base of intelligence must be in the indeterminate and unknown flow, which also is the base of all not defined forms of matter.” For Bohm, the intelligence always was in the core of the Implicit Order.
The individualization does not receive much attention from Bohm, being to this respect, somewhat reserved. For him, to assume that each human being is an independent reality that interacts with other human beings and with the nature, is a simple projection, but he gives emphasis to the collectivity, that is, he puts value in the collective action of the society as a whole.
With relation to the creativity, he calls it of the "Entity of the Cosmic Process", being pure energy. This "being" is intelligent, conscientious, and creative and is also, a creature! This seems to be a more appropriate definition to the concept of spirit.
On the perfection, Bohm defines it as a "being beyond the one that our thought can imagine", nominating as "perfect", with the meaning that it is the Whole. It is a presence with cosmic energy. Bohm´s cosmic model also suggests that this "perfection" exists since the creation of the cosmos. It is present in the cyclical process of the universe. It is pure active intelligence, from which all that is manifested, from cosmos it comes. It acts through an intromission in consciousness. It absorbs information in many levels of consciousness, in all the life forms. It is the Implicit Order that is the Base of the Whole Existence.
Bohm treats, also, of the concept of cosmic pilgrim, title given to the humanity in general. Humanity is the pilgrim of a cosmic process. About the human being condition and about the evils derived from chaos, which cause suffering and death, Bohm believes that it doesn´t exist chaos to the level of the non-human universality; on the contrary, the disorder exists at the level of the humanity, mainly due to the ignorance. The nature gave to the humanity the power of the luxury to make errors, because humanity must have the "[…] possibility of being creative.” It is our power of escape in this cosmic process that put us in these circumstances of choice and possible chaos. The disorder and the consequent suffering will prevail while all the different elements (of any given system, either of any human being or of the human society) do they "grow chaotically and independently one of the other, and they do not work together.”
Bohm considers the evil of the ignorance a close-minded problem. He considers it as "[…] the blackout of the human brain.” It is the problem of the human “ego" closed to the Universal Mind, to the Supreme Intelligence, which communicates itself through intuition form, which is the pure perception. Because of the low level of development of our ego (revealed by our vanity, our emotional fears and pressures, our ignorant points of view and our super extroversion), the intuition is frequently deviated by a closed mind. The opposite condition to a blocked mind is a mind opened to the interiority. Human beings need to look at themselves to be receptive to the intuition.
Bohm´s global vision on human destination is simple and direct, because for the scientist, "[…] humanity consciousness is unique and not truly divisible. Each person has the responsibility to reach this and nothing more, since “[…] there is not another way. It is absolutely this that has to be done and nothing more can function.”
Bohm believes that only by means of a collective cooperation man can reach the high degree of necessary energy to “[…] reach the Whole Conscience of the humanity – the Plenum.”