Saturday, April 14, 2018
THE ORIGIN OF THE UNIVERSE
WHERE DID EVERYTHING COME FROM?
My Answer, or Still Crazy After All These Years!
I am so Blessed! The most important person in my life has always supported my craziness! In 1996, when we attended our first “Toward a Science of Consciousness” seminar in Tucson Arizona, where I presented my derivation of the “non-quantum receptor”, as we entered the lecture hall for the opening session, Jacqui remarked: “We’re in a room filled with over three hundred people that are crazy just like you!”
In an informal talk given by Paramahansa Yogananda, the founder of Self-Realization Fellowship in the US and Yogoda Sat-Sanga Society of India, he told the story of encountering a famous Hollywood actor once while travelling in the US. The actor was openly critical, almost offended, by Yogananda’s appearance, including his dark skin, his ochre-colored robe, long hair and turban. Yogananda replied to the effect: “We are all crazy in some way, and I know about your craziness, but you don’t know about mine!”
Of, course, it turned out that none of the three-hundred and some-odd scientists and philosophers in that room on the University of Arizona Campus that day in 1996 were crazy exactly like me. A few were similar, but most were afflicted with a slightly different kind of craziness. But, I’ve been blessed to have at least three friends in this life, my college roommate, now Dr. David Stewart, my wife, Jacqui, and my research partner, Dr. Vernon Neppe, whose craziness was and is enough like mine to help me believe that there is some value to my craziness.
As we walked out of one of the Tucson II sessions, a few days later, I happened to be walking next to a well-known physicist whose ideas had impressed me. I turned toward him and asked:
“Have you started meditating yet?”
He looked at me quizzically, and answered: “No. Why should I?”
Before I could respond, he disappeared into the crowd.
I firmly believe that any serious thinker, scientist, philosopher or ordinary person, should learn to meditate. It could mitigate their inflated sense of self-worth some. Most scientists like to think that the thoughts they think, the ideas they put forth are theirs alone. I don’t think that is quite true. Many of the ideas that have proved valuable in my career as a scientist and engineer, came to me after periods of deep meditation. In my opinion, this reveals the fact that theories about the nature of reality, like quantum theory and the theory of relativity, or any idea, while ostensibly produced by one or a few, belong to no one. The truth about the nature of reality is available to everyone, and accessible by anyone who is willing to contemplate deeply enough.
Rene Descartes, revered by many as the father of modern science, famously said: “I think therefore I am!” Of course, what he actually said was: “je pense, donc je suis!” when he published this thought in his native language, French, as the primary axiom of his “Discourse on the Method”. Later he published the thought in Latin, the formal scientific language of his day, as “Cogito ergo sum!” in his scholarly work, “Principles of Philosophy.” Reading Descatrtes’ statement, most of us think, yes, that’s right! I am thinking, and that implies that I exist. But, as we all have done, from time immemorial, with this declaration, Descartes did not really start at the beginning, he started well into the middle of the story! His seminal statement assumes that we know What thinking is, and what being is. Do we? Really? Many, many books have been written about thinking and being, but do we really know what they are? Apparently not. We are writing, and we are still in the middle of the story. How do we start at the beginning?
You may be beginning to suspect that I am crazy enough to think that I can figure this out! So, how do we start at the beginning? What, when, where, or who is/was the beginning, the origin of all things? To see how we have tackled the question: “How did all this Begin?” in the past, let’s look at some answers from some of the Homo sapiens cultures of the Earth.
From the Middle East
“In the beginning YHVH created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of YHVH was hovering over the waters. And YHVH said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light.” Then YHVH took dust of the earth and shaped it into the form of a man, and breathed life into that form, and it came to life.
In the beginning there was absolutely nothing, Brahma thought, "Let me have a self", and Brahma created the mind. As Brahma moved about in worship, water was generated. Froth formed on the water, and the froth eventually solidified to become earth. Then Brahma created life, plants, animals and human beings.
From the West
Reality was at first endless space in which existed only Manito, the Creator. This reality had no time, no shape, and no life, except in the mind of Manito. Eventually the infinite creator created the finite, Kitchi Manito, as the agent to establish the nine universes. The finite manifestation Manito gathered together matter to make the solid worlds and gathered together the waters and placed them on these worlds to make land and sea. Then Kitchi Manito gathered together air to make winds and breezes on these worlds. And the fourth act of creation was the creation of life.
From the Far East
There was something featureless yet complete, born before heaven and earth; Silent—amorphous—it stood alone and unchanging. We may regard it as the mother of heaven and earth. Not knowing its name, call it “the Way.” The Way gave birth to unity, Unity gave birth to duality, Duality gave birth to trinity, Trinity gave birth to the myriad creatures. The myriad creatures bear yin on their back and embrace yang in their bosoms. They neutralize these vapors and thereby achieve harmony.
The Big Bang, a Scientific Answer
The current scientific answer is generally known as “the Big Bang Theory”. It was generated after the discovery by astronomer Edwin Hubble, of evidence that distant stars, once assumed fixed in space, appear to be hurtling away from us, implying that the universe is expanding in every direction. Applying Einstein’s theory of general relativity and imagining running the expansion backwards, cosmologists arrive at the conclusion that the universe exploded into existence from nothing, or nearly nothing, and evolved into the vast complex expanding universe we have now. Along the way, life and consciousness blossomed forth according to natural laws, not all of which we know or fully understand.
These “answers” were all generated during the past five to ten thousand years on this planet. They were spoken and written by human beings for communication to human beings. Notice that, even though they come from widely separated places on the Earth, and from different kinds of thinkers, they have some very similar elements: First there was nothing but an infinite nothing or mind or spirit, called by various names, all meaning in some way, the Creator. Then the Creator divided the infinity up into its various parts including our first ancestor(s), and Ba-da, Ba-da, Boom: Here we are today!
Even the Big-Bang scientific answer has some similar components. In it, there was virtually nothing, but then something caused it to explode into everything we have today. No one know what cause this to happen. The main difference between the scientific answer and the traditional answers is that no creator is assumed to be necessary. But, while that seems to be a reasonable assumption, is far from a provable fact.
Are there other versions? Oh, yeah! Plenty. From Zachariah Stichin, to Erich von Dӓniken, to that wild-haired guy on the Ancient Aliens TV series, there are those who believe life originated elsewhere in the universe. There seems to be more and more evidence that there may be sentient beings from somewhere in the universe who are far more advanced than we are. Is that possible? Of course. We’ve seen before that thinking of ourselves as the end-all, be-all center of the universe is usually a blind form of self-centered ego-delusion.
Believe it or not, the Calculus of Dimensional Distinctions (CoDD) mentioned so often in my posts and publications, plays a major part in my answer. To explain how this can be, I will start by quoting three short paragraphs from the beginning of the wonderful little book “Laws of Form”, by British Logician George Spencer Brown:
“The theme of this book is that a universe comes into being when a space is severed or taken apart. The skin of a living organism cuts off an outside from an inside. So does the circumference of a circle in a plane. By tracing the way we represent such a severance, we can begin to construct, with an accuracy and coverage that appear almost uncanny, the basic forms underlying linguistic, mathematical, physical, and biological science, and can begin to see how the familiar laws of our own experience follow inexorably from the original act of severance. The act itself is already remembered, if unconsciously, as our first attempt to distinguish different things in a world where, in the first place, the boundaries can be drawn anywhere we please. At this stage, the universe can not be distinguished from how we act upon it, and the world may seem like shifting sand beneath our feet.
“Although all forms, and thus all universes, are possible, and any particular form is mutable, it becomes evident that the laws relating such forms are the same in any universe. It is this sameness, the idea that we can find a reality which is independent of how the universe actually appears, that lends such fascination to the study of mathematics. That mathematics, in common with other art forms, can lead us beyond ordinary existence, and can show us something of the structure in which all creation hangs together, is no new idea. But mathematical texts generally begin the story somewhere in the middle, leaving the reader to pick up the thread as best he can. Here the story is traced from the beginning.
“Unlike some superficial forms of expertise, mathematics is a way of saying less and less about more and more. A mathematical text is not an end in itself, but a key to a world beyond the compass of ordinary description.”
I wholeheartedly share and agree with professor Brown’s view of mathematics. In my opinion, mathematical description reflects the logical structure of reality. In his book, which I highly recommend as a good introduction to the CoDD, Professor Brown presents the logic leading from the conscious drawing of a distinction to laws governing the forms that make up the universe we experience. While I may depart from what I see as his sterile path of logic, into aspects of reality Professor Brown probably did not anticipate, I believe that his starting point is truly the beginning of the story, and it is my starting point as well, but the CoDD completes the story by finalizing the logical loop of triadic, spherical reasoning and reconnecting the consciousness of the individual with the Consciousness of the Cosmos.
The beginning of reality, as we experience it, is the distinction of self from other, and all description, all thinking (getting back to Descartes’ Method) is always expressed in terms of distinctions. This is why the distinction I have called the quantum equivalence unit, the basic unit of the CoDD which I took so much care to define based on the smallest mass of the elementary particles that make up reality, the electron, is used in the CoDD as the basic unit of observation, measurement and description.
Following this line of reasoning, I come to the conclusion that consciousness has always existed in some form and is the matrix or source of the physical universe, not the other way around. The basic triad: consciousness, distinction, and object, has always existed and will always exist in some form. The creation stories, even the current scientific one, are all about how the essence of reality changes over time, not about an absolute creation from nothing. The CoDD applied to quantized physical reality and infinitely continuous consciousness, shows me that matter, energy, space, and time are illusions created by a primary form of consciousness, and the attainment of oneness with Cosmic Consciousness Itself, is the goal, the purpose and meaning of all creation and all individual sentient beings.
To complete this post, I will quote some sayings of some of my spiritual guides:
“It is the Infinite, the Ocean of Power, that lies behind all phenomenal manifestations. Our eagerness for worldly activity kills in us the sense of spiritual awe. Because modern science tells us how to utilize the powers of nature, we fail to comprehend the Great Life in back of all names and forms. Familiarity with Nature has bred contempt for her ultimate secrets; our relation with her is one of practical business. We tease her, so to speak, to discover the ways in which she may be forced to serve our purposes; we make use of her energies, whose Source yet remains unknown. In science our relation with Nature is like that between an arrogant man and his servant; or in a philosophical sense, Nature is like a captive in the witness box. We cross-examine her, challenge her, and minutely weigh her evidence in human scales that cannot measure her hidden values.
“On the other hand, when the self is in communion with a higher power, Nature automatically obeys, without stress or strain the will of man. This effortless command over Nature is called ‘miraculous’ by the uncomprehending materialist.” --Lahiri Maysaya
“God is Love; His plan for creation can be rooted only in Love. Does not that simple thought, rather than erudite reasonings offer solace to the human heart? Every saint who has penetrated to the core of Reality has testified that a divine universal plan exists and that it is beautiful and full of joy.” --Paramahansa Yogananda
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30) “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10). –Jesus
“Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalms 37:4)
“Names are unimportant; a rose by any other name is still a rose”. – William Shakespeare
“What is the difference if I wear a visible or an invisible wave on my ocean of Spirit?” --Babaji
The bottom line
Matter and energy, time and space, are temporary illusory distinctions. Reality is Eternal and Self-sufficient. Like waves on the surface of the Sea of Existence, we exist as part of the Ocean of Reality and unto it we shall return --fully aware of who we are and where we came from!