I’m currently reading Dr. Gary E. Schwartz’s new book SUPER SYNCHRONICITY, Where Science and Spirit Meet, a book which is, in my opinion, a very important contribution to human thought, science and our understanding of reality in general. In Chapter 5, Dr. Schwartz talks about the synchronous occurrences involving ravens in the life of Dr. Diane Hennacy Powell, and in his life just before and after he met Dr. Powell. The story is an excellent example of how what seems like a unique random occurrence can trigger sequences of seemingly unrelated events that have one thing in common …in this case, ravens.
At the first meeting of the Academy for the Advancement of Postmaterialist Sciences, at Canyon Ranch near Tucson, Arizona in August 2017, before I had read Super Synchronicities, I was seated next to Dr. Powell. She and I had never met before. It turns out that Dr. Powell and I are both alumni of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore Maryland. At this meeting, including the founders of the Academy, there were 12 members seated in a circle. As we went around the circle, introducing ourselves and expressing our interest in the hypothesis that consciousness may be fundamental, or even primary in workings of the universe, the raven connection, detailed in Super Synchronicity, was mentioned. It struck a resonating chord with me immediately.
THE GREAT PYRAMID
In February and March of 2010, I was part of an expedition to the Middle East to film a documentary about the Frankincense Trail, an ancient caravan trail that stretches from what is present-day Oman, at the southern end of the Arabian Peninsula, to the Holy Land, Syria and Egypt. We filmed in Egypt and Jordan. While filming in the desert south of Cairo in Egypt, we were able to have the Great Pyramid on the Giza Plateau to ourselves for a few hours one day. After visiting the Sphinx, we walked up the hill to the great Pyramid. And, after taking a few pictures with friends in the expedition, I looked up at the great Pyramid. To my surprise, there were three large black birds circling the apex of the pyramid. They were ravens.
This may not have been too strange, but I had never seen ravens, or any other birds circling like that in any pictures, videos or films of the pyramids, and a very unusual experience that occurred in the “Queen’s Chamber” a short time later, convinced me that seeing those birds was no accident. Were they a warning? Or an important portent? You decide.
A SPINNING BALL OF LIGHT
Shortly after a group of twenty of us had entered the Queen’s Chamber, the lights were turned off. We were told ahead of time that this would be happen. It was done, they said, so that we could experience the complete darkness in the heart of the Great Pyramid. As an experienced spelunker (I had explored hundreds of caves) I knew very well what absolute Darkness was like. Someone began chanting Om, and soon, it sounded as if everyone had joined in. The sound swelled and reverberated sharply from the bare stone walls of the Queen’s Chamber. It was very pleasant. But then, a few seconds before the lights were turned back on, something happened that I will never forget:
A spinning ball of light came out of the southeast corner of the chamber and struck me on the forehead. I immediately lost all sense of balance, and began to feel the turning of the earth on its axis, the orbiting of the earth around the sun, and a third rotation: that of the galaxy whirling in the blackness of space, and then, sick with extreme vertigo, I lost consciousness”.
Two men who happened to be on either side of me, seeing that I was falling, grabbed me by the arms, preventing me from falling headlong onto the stone floor, and helped me to the entrance of the passageway between the Queen’s Chamber and the Grand Gallery, and one of them went for help. My body was carried out of the Pyramid by our Egyptian guide Fergany, and one of his assistants. When we reached the juncture between the low passageway into the Queen’s Chamber and the Grand Hall leading up to the :”King’s Chamber, we were met by Josef, the youngest son (I think about 7 or 8 years old at the time) of Gary and Mary Young, the organizers of the expedition, who placed his hand on my chest and prayed for my recovery. I threw up, and passed out again,
I was in and out of bodily awareness several times before they deposited my body on the stone just outside the entrance known as the “Robber’s Tunnel” created by force around 820 AD. What happened between periods of sickened consciousness was remarkable: One time, I seemed to be out of my body, far above the Great Pyramid, as if I were seeing it from a point near the peak, hovering in mid-air. But, the bus parking lot had disappeared, and there were trees and green grass all around, and the pyramid was blazing white with a gold capstone! Another time, I was seeing the faces of many people, coming and going, speaking to me in a mixture of languages, interspersed with lights and symbols of many kinds. And, at one point, there were bird symbols, and I remembered seeing the ravens.
Most of the members of the expedition, with the possible exception of the filming crew and the Egyptian guides, were practitioners of traditional and alternative health care modalities, and several of them came to my aid, for which I am eternally grateful. A doctor and a nurse accompanied me back to the hotel, were I had to be transported to my room on a golf cart, because I still could not walk.
THE ANCIENT CITY OF PETRA
The next day, we flew to Amman, Jordan and then traveled by bus to the modern city of Petra, located at the entrance to the narrow canyon leading into the ancient city of Petra, about 150 miles south of Amman. I was able to walk, but each time I closed my eyes, I would experience vertigo and begin to see more faces and hear voices. Fearing that I would become violently ill again, I ate nothing on the trip and struggled all day to keep my eyes open. I told no one what I was experiencing.
One of the men who kept me from falling in the Pyramid, sought me out in Petra and asked me if I had seen the flash of light that occurred just before I passed out. I had told no one about the experience of the light, or anything else, except to explain that I definitely had not suffered from claustrophobia or heat exhaustion, which was what most of the people in the group theorized. I had felt fine before and after entering the Pyramid, and all of the time up until I suddenly passed out. Later, another member of the group also mentioned seeing the ball of light hit me. So, I knew that the experience was not totally subjective.
As a scientist, I had to ask: What was the meaning of this strange experience? There were aspects of the experience that were very hard to explain or understand. Why had this happened to me? Had I traveled back in time several thousand years, and seen the Pyramid as it existed then? Was I seeing the faces and hearing the voices of the people who built the Pyramid? Did anyone else have such an experience?
I did a survey of the expedition members after we got home, and found that while a few had unusual experiences, no one else reported experiencing anything similar to what I went through. While I had been excited about going into the Pyramid, I certainly had not expected anything like that, and would not want to experience it again, because it was very unpleasant. Was it just a freak discharge of static electricity, and I just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time? Was it a meaningless random event?
WHAT IS RANDOMNESS?
As a physicist and mathematician, I have long known that there is no such thing as a random event. We exist in a mathematically ordered universe, and an event that seems to be random only appears so because we are not seeing the whole picture. Statistical analysis and probability theory are designed to enable us to handle things that appear to be random, in a logical manner, but scientifically, they are no more than theories, and theories that are built on very shaky grounds at that!
But what about things like flipping coins, opening a book without thinking about it and reading a random passage? No, sorry, not random. Just because you are not thinking about what you are doing, doesn’t mean the universe isn’t. What about random number generators? A sequence of numbers produced by a program is not random, because the program was created by someone thinking about how to avoid the value of number n+1 being related to number n or n+2.
What about numbers generated by a natural process like radioactive decay? No, they’re not truly random either, they are effects of a complex process that we can’t readily predict. What about the Heisenberg uncertainty principle? Is there true randomness at the quantum level? With the discovery of gimmel, the third form of reality, we can answer no, that does not introduce true randomness either.
The current dictionary definition of a random number generator, found online, is instructive:
“A random number generator is a computational or physical device designed to generate a sequence of numbers or symbols that cannot be reasonably predicted better than by a random chance.”
Notice two things: 1) First, a definition that uses a word that is in what it is supposed to be defining is no definition. 2) Something that is “designed” to generate randomness, cannot produce a truly random sequence. The sequence is non-random by virtue of the fact that it was produced by design.
RANDOMNESS AND FREE WILL
My grandfather used to say: “What is to be will be, if it never comes to pass”! When I was about 9 years old, I asked him what it meant. He said:
“Well, boy, I reckon nothing ever happens by accident. After something happens, however unlikely it might have seemed before it happened, you can always see why it happened after it happens.”
This gave me something to think about for days. But, after the experience in the Pyramid, I eventually came to understand that time is not what we think it is. When identified with a physical body, we have only the moment at hand. The past exists for us only as memories stored in the brain, and the future exists only as imagination. We only have direct access to the present. But this is because the body, with its very limited physical senses, is a super reduction valve.
When freed of the bodily limitations, and awake in pure consciousness, we can experience past, present and future, all at the same time.
Do we have free will? Yes, but not as much as we sometimes think we do.