Katrin Trautwein on Unique Self and Quantum Theory

In this excerpt from “Quantum Theory, The Unique Self, And Evolution,” published in the March 2011 issue of Journal of Integral Theory and Practice, Katrin Trautwein links quantum physical definitions of objectivity and reality to the Unique Self concept of enlightenment. The quantum physical description of phenomena in nature revolutionized classical physics, a framework that presupposes objectivity. One of quantum theory’s central tenets is that all observations are context-bound, which implies that objectivity is merely an ideal abstraction. The Unique Self teaching transcends classical teachings of enlightenment in asserting that all experiences are qualified by an individual’s unique perspective. This implies that truth is merely an individual abstraction.

In the following selection from the essay, Trautwein begins to relate the two theories to each other to propose that quantum theory, broadly interpreted, challenges the Unique Self to accept a Unique Obligation in sustaining the perpetually creative processes that have resulted in his or her own creation. Katrin proposes an ethics of behavior for the Unique Self that fosters creativity by upholding evolutionary variety.

To continue reading “Quantum Theory, The Unique Self, And Evolution,” purchase the JITP, Vol. 6, No. 1, at aqaljournal.integralinstitute.org


Katrin Trautwein, Ph.D., was born in Germany. After being raised in Alabama, she studied at Johns Hopkins University, Konstanz University, and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, from which she received her Ph.D. in Chemistry in 1991. Her thesis research made use of the methods of genetic engineering to study the evolution of an enzyme from cow to man. After completing her thesis, Katrin counseled drug addicts in therapeutic communities for many years before starting a small, innovative company in Switzerland that produces architectural coatings. In 2010, Katrin published 128 Colors (Birkhauser Verlag), a book that describes her work as a colorist.