The Ontological Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics

Michael Epperson

in Quantum Mechanics and the Philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print July 2004 | ISBN: 9780823223190
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235551 | DOI:

Series: American Philosophy

The Ontological Interpretation of               Quantum Mechanics

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Two types of ontologies about the universe arise: the materialist ontologies that describe the universe (and everything in it) as composed of fluids and atoms that move through space and time, and the conventional materialist ontologies that look at nature as contained in intact particles. Even though Whitehead perceives incompatibilities with the interpretations of some physicists, this section provides discussions on Abner Shimony's five points implicitly supplied by the quantum theory, Bohr's utilization of interconnected information as nature's most basic element, the benefits of the Jamesian ontological accommodation from the Interpretation of Copenhagen, and the idea of a “closed system.” Also given in this chapter are equations and sample situations to support the propositions of Murray Gell-Mann and John Bell, Werner Heisenberg's uncertainty relations, and ontological conclusions from the quantum formalism specializing in the elaboration of potential facts.

Keywords: ontologies; quantum theory; ontological accommodation; closed system; uncertainty relations; quantum formalism; potential facts

Chapter.  13385 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mathematics and Logic

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