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Grokking the Illusion

If the existence of  Paranormal phenomena (the list is long) tells us anything, it is that the material universe we believe we live in is nothing more than a four dimensional construct. A construct in which, if you ask four dimensional questions, you get four dimensional answers. We exist in a universe of personal experience, where our consciousness slides along a time dimension, while our senses report the existence of the three “physical” dimensions in the form of objects, space and energetic action. Because we all sense in the same way the same universe, we come to agree about what it is and how it works. Ultimately we develop a science of understanding the mechanisms and laws of this universe and come to believe that our understanding will eventually envelop its completeness – that we will “know everything”. After all, the four dimensional universe is all there is – at least, that is how it seems on a dull Monday morning as we hurry to school or work, or set out upon our daily household chores.

Of course, if we truly believed this, if we “knew” in the most visceral way that this time locked, meaningless material reality which science has seemingly investigated so thoroughly was all there was and that our existence within it was, as we are told, the result of nothing more than a fortuitous accident; that the reason we continue to live, work and reproduce is due to nothing more than a biological urge to survive at all costs – then, what would be the point in living at all? Life or death, it’s all the same.

How long is a human life compared to infinite time? Nothing. How big is a human world compared to infinite space? Nothing. And it does no good to measure human existence by the span of the race, for human beings are individuals, the whole experience of the universe is individual experience and there is no point in adding your experience to mine and saying that it means something, because in a meaningless universe this is not possible. Our “collective experience” would only be worth something if there was some observer or experiencing being larger than us to collect that experience together and say it was worth something, that it had “meaning” for them. But this of course cannot be so – because the high priests of science say it is not so. And we believe them, because they are smarter than us and they know all the answers, right?

Wrong.

In the same way that we falsely believe that “history” speaks about something larger than the individual experiences of those who live through it, modern science adds together the collective knowledge of individual understandings to create general concepts which tell us something about how the universe we observe works. But the scientific imagination does more than this, it uses these concepts to create an “historical” universe; to project its concepts into the past and the future to envisage how things were “then” and how they will be “when”. Our everyday mind doesn’t seem to have a problem with this, after all we do the same thing naturally each day, figuring how tomorrow will go after the events of today, which of course must have occurred because of what happened yesterday. But these are the understandings of “my universe”, which I know enough about to see how things worked out and how they will go tomorrow. The information from my own personal world, from the experiences I have, however, certainly couldn’t be used to understand and predict the collective life of the planet. I wouldn’t even consider such a possibility. I simply wouldn’t have enough information; my own experience of the human world is too limited.

In exactly the same way, the information physical science uses to create and project it’s concepts into the past and the future is also limited. It is, however, limited in such a way that those who use the information cannot see its limitations. Even worse, when confronted with the fact that what they see might indeed be falsified information due to a factor outside their current comprehension, they refuse to accept it.

The great philosopher Plato understood this over two thousand years ago. In his myth of the cave, he presents an exact analogy for the problem with our current scientific understanding of the universe, right down to the point that he makes about the treatment of the man who has seen the sun and understood the fallacy of the cave dweller’s lives.

If we might use this analogy of Plato’s to enlighten our vision of the present, we could say that we live in the cave, that we believe all that the cave dwellers believed, but unlike the pure universe of experience Plato outlined, in our cave there is some sunlight leaking in. Enough sunlight in fact to cause many of us to wonder if the fire lit cave is really all there is to life, the universe and everything.

There really is little point in arguing with the findings and theories of a science framed purely within a materialistic philosophy. While there is indeed a point at which, even within its own theories, a purely materialistic science breaks down, the attitude at this point becomes more a form of deliberate and belligerent ignorance, rather than a profound gasping at the thought that perhaps there is something seriously wrong with it’s world view. The structure of our current scientific materialist view of the universe is something like a very tall building which has been built right at the edge of the ocean. From either strict choice or blindness it has no windows facing the sea, whose hidden depths and turbulent power are ignored. Erosion, of course, is merely a myth propounded by the superstitious few.

We would of course be mistaken if we believed that scientists themselves were all materialists, that they had no interest in, or ideas about, those things which do not fit into the pattern of our scientific consensus. The problem is not so much with what scientists might think, but what they are prepared to concede as fact. Unfortunately, this reduces the bandwidth of such concession to that which can be seen, either through experimental reproduction or verification. Ultimately what science is willing to concede as fact reduces automatically to a materialist vision. The problem is that “science” as an entity of society; as apprehended through its communications to the wider public, does not say, “this is all we can elucidate and we recognize it is not the whole story.” No, it would seem, if simply to retain its position of intellectual power, science as a body professing knowledge would rather its determinations were seen as absolute; that even if merely an artifact of the way science is done, the meaningless universe of nothing but “matter” stands as it is.

This situation simply cannot continue. Not only for solid scientific and philosophical reasons is it time this nihilistic nineteenth century vision was finally laid to rest, but also for the far more important reasons of human welfare, empowerment and happiness.

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