Here is what the Encyclopedia Britannica has to say about a quantum leap:
In the Bohr atom electrons can be found only in allowed orbits, and these allowed orbits are at different energies. The orbits are analogous to a set of stairs in which the gravitational potential energy is different for each step and in which a ball can be found on any step but never in between.
The laws of quantum mechanics describe the process by which electrons can move from one allowed orbit, or energy level, to another. As with many processes in the quantum world, this process is impossible to visualize. An electron disappears from the orbit in which it is located and reappears in its new location without ever appearing any place in between. This process is called a quantum leap or quantum jump, and it has no analog in the macroscopic world.
Because different orbits have different energies, whenever a quantum leap occurs, the energy possessed by the electron will be different after the jump. For example, if an electron jumps from a higher to a lower energy level, the lost energy will have to go somewhere and in fact will be emitted by the atom in a bundle of electromagnetic radiation. This bundle is known as a photon, and this emission of photons with a change of energy levels is the process by which atoms emit light.
In the same way, if energy is added to an atom, an electron can use that energy to make a quantum leap from a lower to a higher orbit. This energy can be supplied in many ways. One common way is for the atom to absorb a photon of just the right frequency. For example, when white light is shone on an atom, it selectively absorbs those frequencies corresponding to the energy differences between allowed orbits.
As someone who has been intrigued by the process of human learning and development, this article raises fascinating questions. We tend to think of the way we learn and grow as a process of incremental change. Looking at it from a third-person point of view—observing others’ learning and growth—we can see that they change over time. And social scientists study groups of people to understand how that happens.
With the encouragement of the human development movement and self-help authors, people sometimes apply the step-by-step, incremental approach to their own learning. As if from a third-person perspective, they look at themselves and plan their own development over time. Makes sense, doesn’t it? I’ve done it myself. And I am not saying there is anything wrong with it.
From that perspective, change does happen over time. But here’s the problem. We don’t live life that way. We live from a first-person point of view. We live moment-by-moment, one moment at a time. We live in the now. In this sense, we are like the electron.
The Pew Research Center reports that half the U.S. public has had a religious or mystical experience, which it defined as a “moment of sudden religious insight or awakening.” I imagine that for the readers of the Pulse of Spirit, that number is much higher.
If you have had such an experience, did it happen gradually, over time? As I look back at my experience, something was happening incrementally. But the experience itself occurred instantaneously. One moment, I experienced myself and my life one way. That disappeared. And the next moment, it was something else. Like the electron, I made a quantum leap.
A person who never embraces their first-person experience of life never makes the quantum leap. They are too busy trying to look at themselves from the outside instead of living from the inside out.
In my own experience, there is more that I have in common with the electron.
My quantum leaps have come when there was bewildering chaos in the world around me. It became clear that the answers I was looking for weren’t coming from there. Sound familiar?
I was primed for a creative download from somewhere. And I got in touch with the source of the download. I received a frequency of activating light that catapulted me into the leap.
In each case, there was someone in my life who was a catalyst for that activation. They were instrumental to it. And yet, the energy that activated a quantum leap to a different orbit transcended the person who catalyzed it.
We do not move to another frequency of energy and orbit in our life by our own efforts, any more than the electron jumps to the next orbit on its own. Can’t you picture the poor little electron jumping and jumping in the attempt, only to fall back to its accustomed range of function? That’s us, struggling at lower orbits and energy levels without the activating energy to take us to the next level.
The electron makes its quantum leap because there is the energy available to it for that leap, and more. The electron has tuned in to exactly that frequency it needs for activation.
We are so like the electron. There are many ranges of energy available. Most of them are not immediately relevant for us. But there is a frequency that is precisely what we need for our quantum leap. We have to use our spiritual practice and our intuitive abilities to tune in to it. And we have to open ourselves to receive it if it is to have meaning in our life.
When we do, the results are awesome—great frequencies of love and life energy vibrating through us. Perspective and wisdom from a higher orbit in our life—a higher scope of awareness of the creative field in which we operate.
We enter an awareness of a sphere full of high-frequency creative energy. We realize that we are not just the electron, looking for those frequencies. We are the source of those energies. We have them to bring to our world, to catalyze the quantum leap that others have to make.
The quantum leap brings the realization that we are not just the human capacity that is involved in our spiritual practice. We are the Sovereign Soul who is directing our human capacity in that practice. The quantum leap is the ultimate spiritual practice, knowing ourselves as the Sovereign Soul and acting as that in our human experience.
Our role then is not to prescribe those frequencies that we believe people need. That is theirs to find. Our job is to offer the full-spectrum light that emanates from the Sovereign Soul, who we are.