The ancient Masters were profound and subtle. Their wisdom was unfathomable. There is no way to describe it; all we can describe is their appearance. They were careful as someone crossing an iced-over stream. Alert as a warrior in enemy territory. Courteous as a guest. Fluid as melting ice. Shapable as a block of wood. Receptive as a valley. Clear as a glass of water. It is good to have the patience to wait till mud settles and the water is clear. It is beneficial to remain unmoving till the right action arises by itself. Not seeking, not expecting; but present, we can welcome all things.
Speaking for myself, my awareness of change and uncertainty came through my studies in biology, and just from growing older. That awareness of the continuous change called life led me to very ancient spiritual traditions, because our present Western mindset has forgotten that life is change. Instead, it promises us relief from uncertainty and the ability to control everything. It's like a 300-year-old case of mistaken identity: we actually thought that we could take over life and remake it according to our own needs.
My consciousness catapulted out of my body. I had the feeling that my consciousness had no boundaries anymore, and I had become the totality of existence. The idea that consciousness somehow mysteriously emerges from matter didn't make sense to me anymore. It was easier to imagine that consciousness could create the experience of the material universe by an infinitely complex orchestration.
An altered state of consciousness is simply one where the observer is not separate from the observed, that there is no naming of "things," and there is the recognition that All Is One.; that there is consciousness and language in all things. Shamanism, then, is the use of altered states of consciousness for the purpose of healing. Generally speaking, it involves traveling to other realms and making contact with Spirit helpers. Even modern physics acknowledges the interconnectedness of all life. It does not restrict itself to a linear model anymore. Quantum concepts are more in harmony with the shamanic view than with Newtonian physics.
The individual human mind is like a computer terminal connected to a giant data base. The data base is human consciousness itself, of which our own cognizance is merely an individual expression, but with it's roots in the common consciousness of all mankind. This data base is the realm of genius; because to be human is to participate in the data base, everyone, by virtue of his birth, has access to genius. The unlimited information contained in the data base has now been shown to be readily available to anyone in a few seconds, at any time and in any place. This is indeed an astonishing discovery, bearing the power to change lives, both individually and collectively , to a degree never yet anticipated.
"The Buddha is that which is awake, that which knows, so taking refuge in the Buddha is taking refuge in the awareness of the mind. The Buddha arises from the Dharma. The Buddha is an attribute, and 'knowing' is also an attribute of that fundamental reality. The Dharma is the ultimate object, the way things are. Its characteristic is emptiness (i.e. emptiness in the sense of 'empty of a separate self' and therefore inter-connected with all things.") The Buddha is the ultimate subject, that which knows, that which is awake. So when the ultimate subject knows the ultimate object, when the mind that knows is aware of the way things are, what comes forth is Sangha, compassionate action. Sangha intrinsically flows forth from that quality. When there's awareness of the way things are, then compassionate skillful means naturally arise and flow from that. The three refuges, as you can see, are all interwoven.
-- Amaro Bhikku in his brilliant little book Small Boat, Great Mountain
Once a measurement is done, the measured system becomes entangled with both the physicist who measured it and a huge number of other particles, some of which are photons flying away towards the other end of the universe; in order to prove that the wave function did not collapse one would have to bring all these particles back and measure them again, together with the system that was measured originally. This is completely impractical, but even if one could theoretically do this, it would destroy any evidence that the original measurement took place (including the physicist's memory.)
(From Wikipedia explanation of quantum physics ... )