It sounds like science fiction, but yesterday’s science fiction often turns out to be tomorrow’s science fact. The concept of a holographic universe was first proposed by physicist David Bohm in the 1980s. Just before Christmas, 2013, it reappeared online in everything from scientific journals to mainstream news outlets. Why did it make the news? Because a group of Japanese researchers has uncovered the best evidence yet that we may indeed live in a holographic universe.

In 1982, a team of physicists at the University of Paris made a startling discovery. They found that in some cases, two subatomic particles could communicate with each other instantaneously. This defied the laws of physics, which state that nothing can travel faster than the speed of light.

Respected theoretical physicist David Bohm suggested a new model of the universe might be needed to solve the puzzle and suggested the universe might be an elaborate holographic illusion.

What is a Hologram?

Holograms are 3-D projections. Most of us have seen them and marvelled at the technology. How can a 3 dimensional image be projected that you can walk around and view from all angles?

Basically, a hologram is made by first exposing an object to a laser beam. Then a second laser is used to reflect the light of the first. The resulting interference pattern is the hologram. The technology behind holograms isn’t what intrigues physicists, though. It’s how holograms differ from two dimensional images that prompts them to suggest the universe may be a holographic projection.

Take an ordinary photograph and tear it in half and you end up with two distinctly different images. Take a hologram and “tear” it in half, though, and each half contains the entire original image. You can continue dividing it and get the same result. This property of holograms is what made Bohm and subsequent researchers suggest that similarly, the universe is not just the sum of its parts, but may contain the whole in each of its parts.

In 1997, physicist Juan Maldacena made the scientific community take a closer look at theory of the holographic universe. Thanks to recent discoveries, it seems to be coming out of the realm of the theoretical and into the realm of probability. According to an article that appeared in the prestigious Nature journal of science on 10 December, 2013, Simulations back up theory that Universe is a hologram, Japanese researchers “now provide, if not an actual proof, at least compelling evidence that Maldacena’s conjecture is true.”

Within a week, the Nature article had gone viral, appearing even on mainstream news outlets such as news.com.au.

universe hologram

The thought that the universe could be “a giant projection” and that we’re all more interconnected than we previously believed is easier for holistic health practitioners to imagine than it may be for others. Holistic medicine is based on the idea of interconnectedness on every level. The food we eat, our posture, our emotions and the way we interact with our environment all have negative or positive effects on our personal well being.

If we see the universe as a hologram and each part of it containing the whole, it becomes clear that not only is wellness a positive personal goal, but in a very real way, our planet’s survival depends on our individual attunement with the life enhancing forces within and all around us.

Here’s to a holistic, holographic 2014!