In this short note physiological terms of unconditioned and conditioned reflexes are suggested for description of the sensitive active reflexive feature of quantum reality related to the impact of observational device. Those new in quantum physics terms intend to emphasize the active feature of quantum reality in combination with its temporary psi-memory of state that is outlined on the background of the passive classical physics. The quantum phenomenon of reflexive activity and temporary psi-memory of quantum reality is pointing to analogy with the known phenomenon of unconditioned reflexes of living organisms. 

1. Wavefunction collapse as quantum reflex           

There is no such concept as ‘reflex’ in classical physics. But that term (a physiological one) may have a special meaning in quantum physics. The quantum object - new, not classical type of physical reality, not particle and not wave, -may get appearance of classical particle or classical wave in response to the impact of the mostly classical observational device [1].     

In classical terms, the observational coercion of quantum reality to classical particle or wave forms looks as violation of causal relationship.  

In quantum terms, there is an essentially quantum-type psi-function answer to the act of observation. In a living organism, accompanying the unconditioned reflex emotions may destroy the memory of the previous reflex. In quantum mechanics, wave-function collapse is produced by an act of observation that ruins the temporary state memory and creates a new state of quantum reality memorized by a new psi-function.The analogy of that active quantum phenomenon with reflex of a living organism is brought about on the background of the classical passive acts of observations.             


Another type of quantum phenomenon, which maybe described by the concept of conditioned reflex, is quantum entanglement where e.g. two particles in a quantum state of definite total angular momentum at different space locations influence each other as a result of an initial joined quantum condition in space and time.

Note that elementary particle fundamental interactions generated by intrinsic charges and masses may also be considered as active reflexive relations between particles in some analogy with unconditioned reflexes in physiology.     


 The new terms of unconditioned and conditioned reflexes are suggested here for expression of quantum reality reflexive activity in some analogy with “Reflexes of the Brain” [2] by I. Sechenov (and further, by the known physiologist I. Pavlov). In quantum physics the term reflex may be useful because it emphasizes the new active reflexive feature of quantum reality in contrast to classical passive one. Reflexive activity of quantum reality as answer to the act of observation is an empirical natural characteristic embedded in quantum mechanics; it is in a certain sense similar to the notion of unconditional reflex in living organisms.         

   Inevitably, the reflex notion in quantum mechanics should be very different from the physiological concept. But the natural feature of sensitive to the act of observation reflexive activity that evokes temporary quantum state psi-function memory makes that activity feature of quantum reality reminiscent of an also natural reflexive feature of life in our anthropic Universe.                         

                                                    3. References       

[1] ‘The Feynman Lectures on Physics’, Caltech online edition.

[2] ‘Reflexes of the Brain’ by Ivan Sechenov, Amazon books, 1965.