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Physical realism is the view that the physical world we see is real and exists by itself, alone. Most people think this is self-evident, but physical realism has been struggling with the facts of physics for some time now. The paradoxes that baffled physics last century still baffle it today, and its great hopes of string theory and supersymmetry aren't leading anywhere.

In contrast, quantum theory works, but quantum waves that entangle, superpose, then collapse to a point are physically impossible—they must be "imaginary." So for the first time in history, a theory of what doesn't exist is successfully predicting what does—but how can the unreal predict the real?

Quantum realism is the opposite view—that the quantum world is real and is creating the physical world as a virtual reality. Quantum mechanics thus predicts physical mechanics because it causes them. Physics saying that quantum states don't exist is like the Wizard of Oz telling Dorothy, "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain."

Quantum realism isn't The Matrix, where the other world making ours was also physical. Nor is it a brain-in-a-vat idea, as this virtuality was in play long before humans came along. Nor is it that a phantom other world modifies ours—our physical world is the phantom. In physical realism, the quantum world is impossible, but in quantum realism the physical world is impossible—unless it is a virtual reality—as these examples demonstrate.

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