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Switch from focus on matter to focus on mind

First, by letting go of certainty that our material world of sensory perception is real. By going with the implications of what Adam Becker has posited, that it's illusory. Quantum gravity -- the goal that was beyond even Einstein -- has opened the door.

This is the real achievement, the real end-product, of centuries of physics studying matter: Eliminating certainty that bodies and sensory perception are the gold standard for establishing definitively what's real / "realistic" and what's not. Just as a physician would eliminate a diagnosis that doesn't fit the symptoms. Sticking with this one is increasingly uncool. It is wrong.

Addiction to sensory perception is the biggest barrier to restoring Consciousness. Physics / Becker is saying maybe the time has come to take it down. It could have come down long ago when Erwin Schrödinger acknowledged that science relying on sensory perception is circular self-referential reasoning -- matter citing itself. It's irrational -- not the best basis for a field that prides itself on objectivity and reliability.

Empirical measurements and experimental research have their place. But the door must open to Logic, where Parmenides and Plato began 2500 years ago. To insight from Intuition that connects minds to our collective Memory and Logic. To revelation that can only come from intuiting the story of Mind. The story of thought-reason and feeling-values. To the qualitative as well as the quantitative, to perception and judgment that include Worth.

Embrace the whole person with a systems approach

The quantum physicist Rovelli's Reality Is Not What It Seems calls for help from philosophy. Becker is not alone. Thomas Kuhn's Structure of Scientific Revolution says science should stay away from purpose. From supporting or "proving" any particular aspiration, philosophy, or ideology. Michael Stevens' The Knowledge Machine holds science to the same "iron rule" of detachment.

But meaning is impossible without engaging the total person, mind-feeling's entire story. Meaning-purpose is impossible without Understanding the whole context. Psychology and theology must be part of the mix along with philosophy and science. Regaining Consciousness requires a holistic, collaborative, systems approach.

Disengage from the wrong guide and choose the right Guide

Our world is a delusion whose source is an event from another Reality: The Child's mistaking its shadow-reflection for a savior that would substitute for its lost Parents, that would guide it to a substitute reality where it would be safe and could endlessly project its imagined guilt onto objectified-imagined "others." Where it could preserve its Innocence, thus ensuring endless conflict and misery. This is the psychopathology of the Child's error explained in A Course in Miracles (ACIM).

We do our part to restore Consciousness by correcting the error in all our choices. By not making unreality real, i.e. by not making our shadow-reflections real. By learning to recognize the Joker we've made of our shadow-reflections. By consciously withdrawing belief in its reality, by disengaging from it. By consciously undoing and invalidating all its appearances-deceptions / lies.

We do our part to restore Consciousness by learning to recognize the Guide that's been provided by Intuition-Memory to help with awakening. By consciously choosing the right Guide, seeking and following its Guidance in all our choices. By utilizing our talents and faculties of mind to build awareness through the exercise of Free Will: introspection, reflection-intuition, thinking-reasoning, feeling-evaluating, judging-choosing. By taking responsibility and holding ourselves accountable for our own learning and growth.

In the face of determined resistance: Never give up!

We restore Consciousness and regain self-awareness by taking issue with Hawking when he declared that "philosophy is dead." In an illusory world the goal is to get at reality, the purpose of philosophy. The goal is to get beyond appearances to the Truth beyond appearances: The purpose of metaphysics, the invention of Parmenides and his Eleatics School of Reason.

We do our part to restore Consciousness by supporting Philosophy and Metaphysics while we continue to support Science. The change of mind that's needed will meet determined resistance from many quarters. Mass extinctions from climate change may deny the attempt altogether. The unconscious Child may need to continue its saga on another planet in another universe.

There’s meaning embedded in the idea that begins the sequence of Logic: the idea of Possibility. The idea that lies at the heart of Creation. Perhaps a gift of Logos-God that’s meant to inspire our efforts now. It’s We will not be denied. It’s Never give up.

Overview: Is there any real reason why we need the answer?

If the measurements of science / quantum gravity, DNA genetics and molecular biology can't explain the origin and fate of the universe or the meaning of life without philosophy, psychology, and theology doing their part, and the dominant paradigms in every field of inquiry are still manifestly not getting it right, then there is "reason why we need the answer."

If the material universe, everything in it, and everything desirable and undesirable about humanity's and all life's experience of it traces back to an event or events in the state of immateriality or mind that preceded it; If it is but a mirror-image reverse -- a perversion -- of another Reality whose dynamics preceded it, caused it, and continue to influence it, then in the name of science's "quest for knowledge" and material "facts," in the name of philosophy's order and ethics, psychology's self-Worth and Understanding, religion's healing and "salvation," there is "reason why we need the answer."

Every error, every defect in what self-deluded minds experience in this illusory "life," even this "life" itself, traces back to the Child's archetypal mistake: the objectification of its own shadow, the projection of its self and its sovereignty onto its imagined "other," and its activation of its shadow-reflection's code or "thought system," a mirror-image reverse -- the opposite -- of all that is Real, True, and Good. All for the purpose of substituting another reality for the Reality that was lost with the loss of Consciousness. The illusion, everything about it and wrong with it, is a replication of this same mistake. The "reason why we need the answer" is (1) to stop the replication; (2) to restore Consciousness;  (3) to correct the mistake.

The main barrier to minds being guided to the answer is the misperception-misjudgment that they don't need to seek it. That even if they do they're not self-deluded; they don't misperceive and misjudge; the status quo is satisfactory; and therefore they don't need guidance. The main barrier is opposition and resistance from a mis-identified shadow-reflection -- an imagined "other." The "reason why we need the answer" is to regain self-awareness. To understand the Truth of who we are: the host, not our shadow-reflection.

Preface

Michael Strevens, in The Knowledge Machine (Liveright 2020), tells us that in their public truths scientists don't trouble their audience with other truths they may be harboring privately. Adam Becker's confession, in February's Scientific American, that quantum gravity is so baffling that physicists wonder if spacetime-matter is "somehow illusory," may be a truth that could no longer be kept private. Not if the profession is to retain any shred of honor or credibility.

Logic takes this astounding about-face from science and asks simple questions:

  • If our bodies and their physical surroundings -- the universe -- are "somehow illusory," what could cause the illusion?
  • If illusions can be caused by dreams, what mind is dreaming?
  • If unconscious minds produce dreams that are illusions, whose unconscious mind is dreaming this particular illusion?
  • What caused this mind to lose consciousness?
  • How did we come to "exist" inside an illusion being dreamed by a mind that's unconscious?
  • What is the story of this mind? Can it be told?
  • If we owe our "existence" to a mind's loss of consciousness -- a calamity on a scale equal to at least one universe and maybe many universes -- shouldn't we at least try to tell its story? Won't this help us fix what's broken? Shouldn't we try?

My metaphysical theorizing is an attempt to answer these questions. With Logic. My latest post was prompted by the scientist Adam Becker's astounding public confession. It offers insights from Logic into how and Why the Mind that produced our world lost consciousness. How and Why the illusion of spacetime-matter "happened" as a result.

The whole story is coming into focus, but it's still writing itself. Understanding may yet have a long way to go. It can't be pushed. It can't be hurried. It reveals itself at its own pace, in logical sequence, one implication, one insight, at a time.

Who is the “Child?”

The Story of the Child is about a character who existed in another Reality before the Big Bang and who exists in the same other Reality now. A character referred to in mainstream philosophical and religious mythology as the offspring of divine beings who willed our universe into existence and populated it with their offspring and its progeny. In this telling, the universe and its inhabitants are unreal, an illusion made by an unconscious-dreaming Child that could not have been Created by Logic-God or by its Parents Mind-Love.

In A Course in Miracles the Child is a he, and he is the Son of the Father. He collectively, in this world, is the “Sonship.” In my telling, it’s the Child, and “it” is both masculine and feminine, he and-or she. It collectively, in this world, is the Child’s “replications” – the many derived from the One. The Child was given birth by Father Mind and Mother Love because in my telling, following the implications of ACIM, the Child is Free Choice, and Free Choice requires that marriage between Mind-Choice and Love-Freedom be its Parents.

Opposite worlds: The Child and its shadow-reflection

The Story of the Child has not one but two dimensions: one Real and the other unreal. There is its own story, the story of its unreal shadow-reflection, and the relationship between the two. A relationship that developed in error. That should not have developed because “relationship” between what is Real and what is unreal – between contradictory, mutually exclusive “realities” – is illogical. “Relating” in this context is a logical impossibility. Because it was illogical, the “relationship” took the Story of the Child seriously off track, onto a siding where it goes round and round, nowhere. Where all that’s wrong and painful, frustrating and calamitous with our world, has settled in, waiting for the Story of the Child to get back on track.

Alternating between two “realities” with the same terminology throws Understanding off track. Terms given initial caps, like “Reality,” refer to the Reality of Mind that preceded the Big Bang and parallels our material universe. The same terms without initial caps, or in quotes, relate to the Child’s state of unconsciousness and all things imagined by it. This includes the unreality of the material universe, bodies and sensory perception, all organic “life” and inorganic matter. In short, everything illusory.

Two mutually exclusive planes of Creation

The Child is profoundly unhappy. It’s not satisfied with the substitute reality its delusion has produced – the delusion that its reflection is an “other” endowed with its own capacities, capable of saving it from the situation its loss of Consciousness put it in. It wants to return to Consciousness, to go Home, reconnect with its Parents, Father Mind and Mother Love, in its Sanctuary of Creation. It yearns to get back to work. It wants to reclaim its powers of thought and feeling, its Free Will, its sovereignty. To bring itself back to Reality and Truth, to Logic, with the Guidance of the Holy Spirit. To be Loved, useful, and happy again.

It doesn’t want “saved” or “saviors” who compromise Free Will. It’s dependent on the Holy Spirit for Guidance, but the Holy Spirit and all of Creation are dependent on the Child for Free Choice. For without Free Choice, the Creation, Affirmation, and Reciprocation of Worth is impossible. So critical is Free Choice that it must occupy its own plane in Reality-Creation where the Consciousness of the Child’s Parents cannot be present.

Conversely, Child / Free Choice cannot logically occupy the same plane of Creation as the Parents. They are connected but their functions must logically be mutually exclusive. The Child’s Consciousness is not defined by the same attributes as the Parents’ Consciousness, and their Free Spirit is not defined by the same attributes as the Child’s Free Choice. Explaining all of this, and more, through The Story of the Child, is meant to expand Understanding and shorten the time to awakening.

The decline and fall of sensory perception

The self-delusion that converted the Child’s shadow-reflection from a dormant code, the mirror-image opposite of the Child’s Being, into the illusion of a self-motivating “other” capable of making its unreality real, is composed of attributes that block the Child and its replications – humanity – from awareness of the Truth that lies behind our material world’s appearances. The main barrier is the assumption that bodies are real and anything detected by bodies’ senses must also be real – the paradigm that today dominates mainstream science, philosophy, psychology, and theology.

Its domination shows signs of being weakened, however, by the findings of experimental and theoretical physics. Adam Becker, the physicist-historian of quantum gravity and author of What Is Real? (Basic Books 2018) has authored the lead article in the February issue of Scientific American (pp. 28-33). Entitled “The Origins of Space and Time: Does Spacetime Emerge from a More Fundamental Reality?”, the article reviews progress toward quantum gravity and concludes with “a question of whether time and space are somehow illusory.” A question raised by an ancient Greek philosopher, Parmenides, 2500 years ago, “an unsettling prospect that has haunted Western philosophy for over two millennia.”

Unsettling, I would add, because science is being forced by its own logic to consider, for the first time, another Reality. The Reality of Understanding that doesn’t depend on the circular, self-referential “reasoning”’ and subjectivity of bodies and sensory perception. That depends instead on Logic – the Order of Mind instead of the chaos of matter. The objectivity of another perspective not of this world, the perspective that led Parmenides to conclude that Mind is Real and matter is not.

Body-centered or Mind-centered: which shall it be?

Parmenides, relying not on experimental physics which had not been invented but on Logic, reasoned that time and space are illusory. The theory and practice of metaphysics, which he invented, influenced Plato, whose mind-centered idealistic philosophy helped to define Western thought. Under the influence of his pupil, the biologist Aristotle, its orientation shifted toward body-matter centered “realism,” and thus did science start.

Then, centuries later, a unique breed of metaphysicist-practitioner appeared. Jesus upended all speculation with astounding departures from familiar “reality” -- miracles that flouted the “laws” of physics. His message of Love, Innocence, and Forgiveness flouted the norms of relationships to equal astonishment. He was a tour-de-force of Logic, a simple itinerant teacher with no connection to officialdom, his only “authority” the power of what he taught, felt, and expressed. The power of Connection through gentle loving kindness. It was, all told, an electrifying, mind-bending introduction to the possibility of another Reality. An upheaval meant to part minds from this “reality.”

But while a few were convinced, like Valentinus, the second-century Gnostic Christian teacher, that material reality is unreality -- an illusion, – the body-matter centered paradigm soon reasserted itself. It did so not under the influence of philosophy but under the dominance of organized religion. The Church, claiming legitimacy from Jesus that Jesus could not have intended, obliterated all opposition as “heresy” and the true intent and legacy of Jesus along with it. Mainstream philosophy flirted with Parmenides from time to time – Bishop Berkeley, for example, -- but it was rare.

The world, for now, remained unchanged. For what are mainstream science, philosophy, psychology, and theology, after all, but waystations of trial and mostly error in the time it will take for the Child and its replications to attain maturity? Accidents and mistakes in the evolution of organic and inorganic matter that Sean B. Carroll chronicles in A Series of Fortunate Events (Princeton 2020).

The self-delusion of an imagined “other” and the train wreck of evil

A Course in Miracles could be the explanation, the book Jesus couldn’t write two thousand years ago, because his audience wasn’t ready. Channeled last century, it explains the psychopathology of the Child’s interaction with its shadow-reflection that produced the illusion: a self-delusion that set an unconscious Child to dreaming a world of spacetime and matter. The dream replicated in our own self-delusions with our own shadow-reflections.

What, then, is “good?” The host. That is, the Child who hosts a shadow-reflection that is its mirror image opposite, a lifeless, mindless, loveless code that, when it’s mistaken for an imagined “other,” behaves as one would expect the opposite of Being to behave: like a virus. Not interested in Life or Freedom but only in taking its host’s mind captive and replicating itself.

What, then, is “evil?” The host’s shadow-reflection mistakenly “recognized” as an imagined other. That is, a part of the subject host that’s been objectified into an imagined other that the host then tries, through projection, to enable and empower with its own capacities – an impossibility. For the only “capacities” a shadow-reflection can activate, that’s only a coded opposite, is its own viral code.

The final step in the self-delusion that gives it – and the imagined “other” – its misperceived capacity to torment the Child and its replications – humanity, the “many” – is the captivity of the Child’s mind and self-identity by the code. That is, by the Child now imagining that it is its reflection. By the Child and its replications – us – no longer distinguishing between captor and captive. In extreme cases this means the disappearance of the self into the imagined “other.”

The dog is being wagged by its own tail

To encounter an individual in this condition would then be to encounter an individual unaware that they have become their own shadow-code, that they are, therefore, evil incarnate. Such appears to be the case with the current leaders of the Republican party and Russia, two demented autocrats who have been taken captive by their shadow-reflections and seem to have lost all awareness of themselves, their shadows’ host.

The pattern in all of humanity’s train wrecks originates with a host’s delusion that its shadow-reflection is a separate, autonomous “other.” A dog deluded into imagining that its tail is another dog, being wagged by its own tail. This is how humanity goes about managing its affairs, and we see the results: train wrecks all the way from individual relationships to relations among nations, ethnic groups and races on a global scale. Replicating the Child’s archetypal mistake, never getting it right. A pattern that will continue unabated until we do get it right. Until we apply Logic to an Understanding of our context, to an Understanding of the mistake and correct it.

How and Why did this happen?

Why was the Child not forewarned of the misperception and misjudgment to come when it was given birth in Reality? Why did not its Parents simply reach into the illusion, restore Consciousness, and rescue it? How could Logic – Logos, God -- have failed to design Creation with a failsafe process and structure? Why do the Child and its  replications, though illusory, nevertheless experience suffering that’s real?

The long answer requires The Story of the Child and its subtext, the story of its shadow-reflection, the Joker. The short answer is Reality-Creation is not one but two distinct parts, and, though connected, they are mutually exclusive. The idea-premise that “launched” the sequence of Logic at the “beginning” – in quotes because Logic and its sequence are Being by definition, their own definition as they are their own Source, and none of this can have a “beginning” – was something on the order of the Word, which roughly translates to Possibility. The Consciousness of the Child’s Parents-Being that gave birth to the Child “Knows” or recognizes only Reality. For this is its function, to bring Reality into existence by Knowing it, i.e. being Conscious of it, and at this phase of Creation only Consciousness and one Reality are logically possible.

The phase of Creation marked by the birth of the Child, who is Free Choice, had a very different beginning. It wasn’t launched by an idea-premise that expressed itself in Consciousness with the capacity – the ability and Force – to move Reality and Creation toward Being by defining and recognizing it, by designing its process and structure.  It was launched by another kind of Consciousness with another function: the capacity to Choose. That is, by the capacity to reason, evaluate, and judge among different choices.

It was launched not by Possibility alone, which poses no choice in Reality, but by Choice between Possibility and its opposite, impossibility -- between Reality and unreality. The attribute of the Child’s Consciousness that requires its own plane of Creation, that cannot blend with its Parents’ Consciousness on their plane of Creation, is the possibility that, with Free Choice, the Child will choose illogically, incorrectly. That the Child will thereby lose Consciousness. And once Consciousness is lost, unconsciousness will be overtaken by illusion and make unreality – the dream of an alternate reality -- real. 

Mind with Free Choice that can lose Consciousness, dream an alternate reality, and thereby make (not create) unreality “real,” performs an essential role in Creation – in Creating, affirming and reciprocating Worth. But it doesn’t belong on its Parents’ plane of Creation. The Consciousness of Parents-Being, that establishes what belongs in Logic-Reality, i.e. Possibility, Existence, Truth, doesn’t belong on the Child’s plane of Creation where only one Consciousness can function and it must allow for Choice between Possibility and impossibility, Reality and unreality, i.e. between the consequences of Consciousness and unconsciousness.

Why was the Child not forewarned?

Why was the Child not forewarned of the misperception and misjudgment to come when it was given birth in Reality? Because its Parents Knew nothing of the risk of unconsciousness and its consequences and could not Know, by definition. Because in Logic there must always be sequence: what precedes and what succeeds – before and after. In Creation and evolution what is Known is before, what is unknown is after. Even if the Child’s Parents could have Known of the risk they could not have Known of the event itself in advance. In the end, they did not Know because they could not know.

Why wasn’t the Child rescued by its Parents?

Why did not the Child’s Parents simply reach into the illusion, restore Consciousness, and rescue it? Because to do so they would have had to “Know’ the illusion and thereby make it Real. Because to do so they would not only have disabled their Child’s Free Will, they would have willed their Child out of existence. Why? Because their Child is Free Will. Is Free Choice. It’s who their Child is. Because they, its Parents, are Father Mind-Choice and Mother Love-Freedom, incapable of giving birth to any other Child.

How could Logic have failed to design failsafe Creation?

How could Logic – Logos, God -- have failed to design Creation with a failsafe process and structure? Because it is in the very nature – the Logic – of Creation that it advances into the unknown. Logic, the Free Spirit of Mind-Inquiry and Love-Creativity, governs and protects from the bottom up, from circumstances that are constantly changing and evolving from one context to another. Logic, the definition of Everything, is constantly defining and redefining Reality in response to Creation. Logic, subject itself to the laws of cause and effect, to Necessity, evolves. Evolves in alignment with Creation that advances by experience. By experiment. And because the Creation of Worth must advance by Free Choice, it must advance by trial and error.

The possibility of error is built into the Logic of Creation. Logic, which cannot rule arbitrarily and still Be what it Is, cannot rewrite the rules to guarantee success. Cannot design Creation to be what it is not. Cannot design the process and structure of Creation – the functions of Mind and the planes where they operate – to be failsafe. Logic cannot design Free Choice to be what it is not: always the right choice, always the logical choice. Logic and the Child’s Parents cannot control the Child and its choices, for to do so would deprive it of Free Will and sabotage Creation’s purpose: the Creation, affirmation, and reciprocation of Worth. They must allow the Child to choose freely and to learn from experience, to expand its Consciousness, to acquire Knowledge – to grow and mature -- from trial and error. With their guidance but never their control.

Why is our suffering unreal yet experienced as real?

Why do the Child and its replications, though illusory, nevertheless experience suffering that’s real? Because while the switch from Consciousness into unconsciousness is a switch into illusion, the switch itself is Real. It happened. Made Real by the Child’s identity and capacity for Free Choice. While separation is not real and the Child remains connected to its Parents and Reality, its awareness of the connection has been lost. The cause of the apparent separation is illusory but, with the loss of the Child’s awareness, its effect seems real. Has been made real by the dream of unreality. It is therefore experienced as real. We in our world of illusion, dreaming of unreality and untruth, experience the alternate reality “promised” by our reflection, our imaginary “other,” as very real. We suffer.

The Real “Good News:” the freedom to choose again

The bad news is that the Child has mistakenly and inadvertently chosen to suffer in unreality. It did so in circumstances explained by A Course in Miracles and elaborated by The Story of the Child, that disposed it to mistake its reflection for an “other.” To imagine that the “other” was a substitute parent, an external “savior” who would save it from its trauma and restore Order. It was a colossal misjudgment that produced the absurdity of the Big Bang, a universe of organic and inorganic matter whose origins and meaning the “laws” of science have not explained and can never explain.

The good news is that the Child can choose again. And we, by empathizing with the Child instead of prolonging its agony, by Understanding our situation, by choosing to align with Logic instead of foolishness, can help it Choose correctly. To choose Peace, Truth, and Sanity. To rid us of our nightmare of conflict, deception, and insanity. To awaken and return Home.

A million times zero still equals zero

People enchanted with the razzmatazz of physics aren’t paying attention to what it’s already “discovered.” Nils Bohr, over a century ago, acknowledged that physics has reached the end of its ability to explain our “reality.” No more experiments can take it farther. Adam Becker, in the February issue of Scientific American, goes one step farther: philosophy is needed to explain physics that may be telling us that its subject, time and space, may be “somehow illusory.”

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) can’t tell us anything that Logic hasn’t already figured out. The Logic of Parmenides, the classic Greek founder of metaphysics, the branch of philosophy that takes thought behind appearances to get at Reality. The philosopher cited by Becker who concluded that reality isn’t what it appears, “an unsettling prospect,” in Becker’s words, “that has haunted Western philosophy for over two millennia.”

The logic of the ‘metaverse” is obvious. But JWST can’t “prove” the existence of other universes when physics – when all of science, philosophy, psychology, and theology – insists on proof by sensory perception. Can’t be done. It doesn’t mean that we won’t “learn” something “new” and “interesting’ from JWST. It just means that what we “learn” will further entertain minds conditioned to ignore the logical implications of what they’ve learned: that if one universe manifests the illogic of unexplainable appearances more universes can only do the same. A million times zero still equals zero.

When will minds deluded by body senses get it through their heads: there’s no ”there” out there. It’s not what I’m saying. It’s what physics is saying.

From re-enactment to re-engineering

What is “life” on earth, within the dream, from the point of view of the shadow code / Joker, the mimic copycat parasite? Re-enactment of the Child’s Life-Being in Reality but just the appearance of it shot through with contradictions, disorder, conflict, and temporary situations.

What is “death” on earth? Re-enactment of loss of Consciousness. What is “body”? A device for the ego-Joker’s imitation of Child-Being’s function in Reality, only with everything fragmented, separated, broken, imperfect and temporary, interrupted by re-enactment of the loss of Consciousness.

What is “choice” on earth? Re-enactment of Child-mind’s being taken captive by self-delusion that it’s shadow-reflection is a separate object with attributes of parental intent to “care” for its Child and “guide” the Child’s behavior in all contexts-conditions faithfully. Re-enactment of Child-mind being duped by lies that originate within itself, its shadow non-being, a lifeless, mindless, loveless viral code.

What is “life” on earth? Re-enactment of these events – the Child’s loss of Consciousness and self-delusion that its own shadow-reflection is another self, a parental substitute whose “guidance” can be trusted – until the Child realizes that it can re-engineer these events with different outcomes.

Nothing is possible without regaining awareness

I choose not to be deceived and manipulated by anyone’s delusion. Not your shadow, not my own, not the shadow-reflection of the Child, the illusory archetypal Joker. But I do want to be used. Used by a guide that can be trusted because it doesn’t come from an imagined “other.” In Reality where separation is a logical impossibility there are no ”others,” just one Child-Self, its Parents Mind-Love, their Relationship, and Everything enabled and empowered by the benevolent governance of Logic. By the Logic of limitless Possibility.

I choose not to delude myself into the service of impossibility. I choose instead to be lead into a better cause: helping the Child and its replications – us – realize it can re-engineer the events it’s re-enacting with different outcomes. Regaining Consciousness – awareness of who we are and what we’re supposed to be about – is the central issue, the central task of humanity. The central motif of the Story of the Child and the story of the Joker, its self-delusion. Nothing including regaining Innocence is possible without awareness.

Awareness of the Joker shadow-code’s lies, the self-delusion, is an essential first step. Then we must un-do the lies, re-condition humanity to respond to the Reality-Truth that lies behind life’s appearances. The Reality-Truth that the body-sensed environment is an illusion just as physics now suspects. Just as it may have concluded over a century ago with the bizarre discoveries of quantum mechanics but was too frightened or embarrassed, confused or self-serving, to acknowledge.

What’s really new and interesting isn’t JWST

Sure, JWST is a fun return to the pizzazz of physics, back to the heady days of general relativity and Einstein’s celebrity when there was every expectation that science would explain everything. Just what Einstein set out to do at Princeton’s Institute for Advanced Studies, only he failed. And quantum gravity today isn’t going to succeed where he failed.

This is the ultimate meaning of Adam Becker’s piece in Scientific American. This is what’s really “new” and “interesting:” not more Hadron Colliders and ingenious telescopes that continue barking up the wrong tree in science’s vaunted “quest for knowledge.” But the realization, finally, that no matter how fine a point science makes of matter, matter doesn’t hold the answers we’re looking for. The answers are in Mind. Mind that’s given up its delusion. That’s ready to listen to Logic. 

Parmenides was right. Plato who was influenced by Parmenides nearly got it right. Valentinus was right.  Bishop Berkeley was right. The miracles of Jesus and his book, A Course in Miracles, got it right.

But, yeah, let’s take a ride on JWST and entertain ourselves a little bit more. Revive the old delusion that science, the study of matter, is going to explain everything. That space travel, dark matter and black holes, colonizing other planets -- the stuff of space-struck adolescence – can endlessly distract us. See if having doubles in other universes adds meaning to our lives and somehow makes things better.

It’s a joke, right? You’re kidding me.

2

Who and what this is about

“ESFP” herein refers exclusively to a category of Myers-Briggs personality type: Extravert / Sensing / Feeling / Perceptive without Judgment. It does not generally refer to ESFPs with Judgment. They belong firmly in two separate and distinct subcategories. The generalizations herein cannot even apply uncritically to all ESFPs without Judgment because personality types are rife with permutations. The subject is complex and does not lend itself to hard and fast anything. Although it’s an everyday preoccupation the ultimate foundation for its insights is intuition.

This is a reflection on the development of the ESFP without Judgment personality type:
• in relation to its own internal INTJ opposites: Introversion / Intuition / Thinking / Judgment
• in relation to others who belong to its opposite INTJ personality type.

It is based not on formal scholarship but on general observation and specific experience with multiple ESFPs. Its inspiration is Isabel Briggs Myers’ notion, laid out in Gifts Differing (1980), that individuals with opposite personality types can help one another expand their personalities into their opposites. That by doing so they will gain self-awareness, strengthen their innate powers, abilities, and overall character, strengthen their relationships, and thereby meet their obligations and stand up to adversity.

It makes no claim to objectivity since it’s about ESFPs in relation to INTJ opposites and the author is an INTJ. It is, in fact, highly subjective. Its claim to legitimacy rests solely on the implications of logic drawn from what is known about and experienced with these two personality types. In other words, it will either make sense and ring true or it won’t. It will either help reduce friction and make life easier or it won’t.

The frustration of friction

Frustration is evident in these thoughts because of the author’s personal experience with ESFs and the heartbreak of troubled relationships with relatives and friends. Plus there is humanity’s shared experience with demagogues like the former guy who make a career out of troubling relationships. The author’s INTJ type is a distinct minority according to Isabel’s intuition, maybe a quarter of the general population. That’s certainly how it seems. He’s surrounded by pennant-waving, winning-obsessed fans, one for all, all for one, who would give us the shirts off their backs so long as we’re already wearing their team’s shirt. If we’re not, or worse, if we’re just an individual without a team, we’re nobody. We might as well be invisible. This can be frustrating.

The model for these observations is a composite, although the former guy checks off on most everything that annihilates personal friendship, so he qualifies. “ESFP without Judgment” is ESFPs walled off from their INTJ opposites. From INTJ assets that are not only under-utilized they’re treated as aliens not to be trusted. Whether by conscious choice or by being so enamored of type that the ESFPs have forfeited their ability to see or be anything else. Like they’ve given up their free will, which is to say, their minds since all that reason and analysis are really for is to choose. Like they’ve become a personality so set in their type, so rote and inaccessible, that it’s pointless to relate to them except socially on the most superficial level.

So resolute, so intractable is their inaccessibility, that these thoughts can’t really be directed at them. It would be pointless. They’re directed at whatever controls them. And if these thoughts sound like ire so be it: whatever has taken them captive and out of reach is definitely not nice. The problem is, it can’t be a Who. It can’t be anything living. How can a self-respecting INTJ get anywhere with an inaccessible ESFP by raging at a virus? Jesus raging at money lenders defiling a temple made sense. Raging at a PA system blaring inane messages scripted by an absurd movie villain wouldn’t.

Getting to understanding

What could work is an attempt at understanding. Not retaliation with yet another projection of guilt, but understanding that protects both sides with thoughtful analysis. With patient reflection instead of passion. Understanding that clarifies choices and the costs and benefits needed to make them rationally. Costs and benefits that can make a friendship or break it.

Why bother? Maybe it’s because motivation isn’t always for us alone to decide. Maybe others depend on ESFPs and INTJs to get along, to get their acts together, so they attend to business, to shared purpose on behalf of the larger family. On behalf of the larger community that can’t maintain harmony and attend to its business unless all of us do our part. There’s selfishness and rancor in the friction to follow and this may be where it begins: with individuals caught up in their stuff ignoring the bigger picture: those who depend on them.

What then can be done about it? How about striving for understanding to reconcile our personalities on behalf of those who need us, and to serve our families and our communities with loving kindness?

Sensing the Absolute

Obsession with imagery and indulgence in bodily appetites are a form of worship for ESFPs without Judgment. Worship of the Absolute that not only caresses their senses with blessings but reciprocates with their very Worth. Though they may only be preoccupied with appearances there is no overstating the value of appearances. Satisfaction from experience that is both sensuous (aesthetic) and sensual (passions and appetites) is to be effusively praised and thanked. It is to be worshiped to fully affirm and reciprocate the reality and worth of gifts and giver: the body’s senses-appetites and their sensed physical environment of infinite beauty, diversity, fascination, and abundance. Divinity shrouded in the vastness of its incomprehensibility.

To a worshipful ESFP, the contrary view put forth by Jesus in A Course in Miracles (ACIM) and by the second-century Gnostic teacher Valentinus is blasphemy. It gets no more sympathy than the escapee from Plato’s Cave who tried to enlighten those who remained behind. “Non-dualism,” that holds that between Mind and matter, Heaven and earth, Good and evil, Values and their opposites, only one can be real, is heresy. So say ESFPs. And so says the Church, which went to great lengths to stamp out the heresy of Gnosticism.

Dualing or non-dualing our way to “Reality”

ESFPs’ loyalty to the sensed universe, that rewards bodies with pleasure and them with affirmation, is intransigence. It’s faith posing as “realism” even though physics itself doubts its reality. Posing as “reason” even though physics itself acknowledges the flaw in its circular reasoning. It must be faith because ESFPs make no attempt to support their choice with facts and Logic. They avoid facts and Logic. They rest their case without even feeling obliged to make one. Their reality is real because they say it is. More circular reasoning: QED – quod erat demonstrandum.

The “case” for “god,” an absolute source who shares ESFPs’ body-sensed universe, is a flagrant contradiction. Irrational but nonetheless accepted by humanity’s dominant dualist paradigms with scarcely any thought. Whereas the case for ACIM’s non-dualism, that is thoughtful and carefully reasoned, is held to be blasphemous. The Eleatics school, that Parmenides founded in the late fifth century BCE, held that our material environment is illusory. The school and the field of metaphysics that it founded, based on the pursuit of truth through Reason, was held in high regard. It influenced Plato and, through Plato, all of Western thought.

Aristotle didn’t launch the physical sciences by slamming the door on reasoning based on the Reality of Mind. His acknowledgement that Mind is Real kept it open. Parmenides made Rovelli (Reality Is Not What It Seems 2017) uncomfortable but, strangely, Schroedinger’s calling out physics for circular reasoning didn’t. It was OK if the measurements of matter taken by bodies are measurements of themselves, an obvious conflict of interest. A violation of objectivity that compromises understanding.

Hiding in Plato’s Cave

Yet Schroedinger and Rovelli, two theorists, didn’t look into it, didn’t apply their powerful intellects to correct an obvious flaw in the Logic of their profession. Pointedly stayed away from philosophy when the situation cried out for it. When Schroedinger, a philosopher as well as physicist, might have made a decisive contribution. Why? What kept these two giants in their field from tracing the implications of this flaw? From thinking about it? What were they protecting?

It’s striking how closed minds are on this question. Not just among body-biased ESFPs but among serious INTJ thinkers as well. Ever since Plato the question has been left untouched like a third rail by the dominant paradigms of science, religion, philosophy, and psychology. By the same paradigms that preside over the world’s dysfunctional politics and tribal-racist culture. That ensure that relationships of all kinds break down with regularity, with ruinous consequences not just for humanity but for the entire planet. ESFPs who get their kicks from sensing-feeling and physicists who make a living off of it remain confined to Plato’s Cave, perversely unable and unwilling to use their minds to think or see their way out of it.

Putting faith in the “magic” of pleasure and comfort

The root cause of body-biased ESFPs’ resistance to ACIM’s case for non-dualism – for the reality of Mind and the unreality of matter -- would appear to be an irrational faith-based choice. Their choice of the source of everything implied by body sensing-feeling for their guide: pleasure-gratification from the sensuous and the sensual, from sensed-felt benefits immediate and concrete, from material possessions, and the satisfactions of empowerment and affirmation attained by dominance, winning, and supremacy over the competition.

Taking the “reality” of body sensing-feeling benefits and their source on faith seems to excuse ESFPs and the physics profession both from thinking. From introspecting, reflecting, reasoning, feeling-evaluating, and judging – every INTJ function, every asset. Excuses them from using free will, the power and ability to choose, to question the authority of their guide magic. Their “god” who rules the Cave. They can’t go there because the magician who blesses them with their sacred comfort zones won’t allow it. Because it might depose the magician and deprive them of the ultimate good: their comfort. Dictated by their physical essence, their bodies’ senses-feelings. By the perversion of Plato’s “Good.”

The ultimate transgression isn’t jeopardizing the welfare of those entrusted to the care of ESFPs; it’s hurting ESFPs' own “feelings.” Because their theology, their blind faith in their “god,” is based on the supreme worth of what body senses-feelings deliver: pleasure and comfort. The ultimate validation of their “god’s” divinity, its power, its authority, and worthiness.

Upholding the laws of chaos

Highly attuned to their own feelings ESFPs can be startlingly numb to the feelings of others. Since bodies are their reality, and bodies are isolated and separated, they’re seen as fundamentally in competition with one another. Fertile ground for a win-lose, gain-loss, zero-sum formula for “success.” ESFPs’ formula is ideally suited to their personality type which receives abundant validation from the material world, from social-group behavior, and from the dominant paradigms – the “establishment” -- based on sensory perception.

None challenges ESFP’s faith-based “reality” of selfish-competing bodies getting along by going along, by the pretense of agreeability and social-group non-competition. By the façade, the thin veneer, of belonging-love that’s conditioned on Cave occupants accepting forced conformance with the top-down rule of matter. A condition that, from an INTJ perspective, is blatantly insincere, dishonest, and hypocritical.

But to the ESFP it’s well grounded in the “reality” of fundamentally incompatible bodies-selves. In self-interests competing with one another, dependent on forced pleasantness and agreeability to get along, to achieve “harmony” that ESFPs crave. INTJs’ contrary view seems to them an invitation to chaos, to terminal disharmony in a world of separated bodies ruled by a mindless Cave master, the great inscrutable body in the sky.

Choosing another formula for “success”

ESFPs’ orientation might be changed by one thing. By an awareness of the possibility of an opposite guide whose benefits are mind- and soul-centered instead of body-comfort centered. Who dwells within their own INTJ nature, inside their Intuition. And this would explain their ESFP sensing-god’s abhorrence of it: because it would shine it and its dark Cave away. ESFPs’ orientation might be changed by the choice of Psyche, one among many names for the guide who can speak for Innocence. Because she is Innocence, with no need to project guilt and resort to blame. She also goes by “Christ,” the Christian soul of Innocence: the Child beloved of her Parents. She’s who we are when we aren’t misled by appearances and thrown into chaos by our primitive limbic systems.

The choice of an opposite guide who speaks for Innocence instead of guilt would end the misperception. It would end the obstruction, condemnation, and retaliation that ESFPs’ formula for “success” inflicts on others, particularly INTJs. Confronted with ESFPs’ intransigence INTJs must take on the burden of judging for them on behalf of shared purpose, attending to others entrusted to their care.

ESFPs have a choice. They can choose another guide, another god. They can reconsider their choice on their own by accessing their INTJ assets: by introspecting, reflecting, reasoning, evaluating, and judging. By questioning their judgment against the “benefits” of unquestioned loyalty to their bodies’ feelings instead of the thoughts and feelings that occupy their minds.

ESFPs’ cult of specialness

Close examination of the “benefits” of body-dominance suggests an innate selfishness, an insensitivity that borders on cruelty. Its source is an attitude toward others perceived as competing instead of sharing. An attitude so anti-social that, when practiced by ESFPs with the inclination and opportunity to do harm, it’s sociopathic. The body-centered god of ESFPs is all about competition, whereas the guide of INTJs’ Intuition and internal moral compass is all about sharing. ESFPs’ reality is dog-eat-dog. INTJs’ reality is interconnectedness and reciprocity -- giving and giving back -- based on the reality and truth of mind and Psyche, not on the appearance of separated competing bodies.

There’s irony in the dissonance between ESFPs and INTJs over competition against sharing. ESFPs needing harmony from conformance place excessive emphasis on the pretense of agreeability, tact, diplomacy, and politeness, making a show of respect to hide the fundamental divide. INTJs challenging the pretense with the actual harmony of shared purpose are forced into a show of disagreeability to remove the misperception. To shift ESFPs’ blind faith in the divisive god of body-centered values to the God of mind, trust, and intimacy. To stop the transgression. It’s ESFPs, the presumed champions of harmony, togetherness, and agreeability, who in the end break relationships, not INTJs.

Above the figure nailed to the cross it’s inscribed “Loser,” and the figure isn’t a sacrificial stand-in for victims but the ESFP’s own image. A childlike figure labeled elsewhere by astute journalists “clown” and by street protesters parading with the inflated likeness of a Big Baby. A churl elevated to divinity by religion bound to its god not by the miracle of Creation-Life but by the cult of magic-death. Not by ascent to Heaven, light, and fulfillment but by descent into hell, darkness, and defeat. The unmistakable brand not of a proud, self-earned winner but of a pathetic, self-condemned loser. Guilt hiding in the delusion of victimhood innocence. All of it separation-specialness – a sick joke.

The eternal Beauty that lies beyond whatever bodies can detect

For INTJs, Worth comes from mind’s thinking, valuing, and judging, where the principle of sharing and togetherness is the controlling consideration, the consideration that integrates all into one. For ESFPs, it’s very different. Worth comes from bodies’ sensing-feeling where competition and social-group conformance make up the controlling consideration: every man for himself. It’s a separating principle disguised as “liberty” unbound by the fairness of community that makes real freedom possible.

INTJs’ experience of this body-centered world is desiring to connect via mind’s thoughts and love’s feelings but having less success than connecting via bodies’ senses and feelings. Were it not for their abundant companionship, through the creative possibilities of mind’s imagination, INTJs’ experience would be one of unrelieved isolation and loneliness. Their guide, readily accessible through the shared Memory of Intuition, connects with inner selves sharing not competing.

The temporal beauty, abundance, and possibilities of bodies are nothing compared to the eternal beauty, abundance, and possibilities of minds guided by freely-chosen loving sources beyond whatever bodies can detect. That is, when the fear of what’s unknown to bodies is let go, because minds are not unknown. Because minds are intimate, integral to selves, familiar. More so than bodies that come and go. That appear magically from out of nowhere, change beyond recognition, and disappear back to nowhere, can ever be -- “strangers,” in the words of ACIM, “wandering through the house of Truth.”

The Reality and Gift of Comfort

INTJs connect because Mind is the seat of what’s Known, the source of safety and security, of Logic which is Protection. Of Love, which is true companionship, true Relationship, the true source of Comfort -- the comfort and ease that ESFPs crave. Its source can never be isolated-separated bodies in competition with one another, that turn giving into taking, gain into loss, pleasure into pain, love into fear, innocence into guilt, life into death.

For ESFPs all in for body-centered comfort and competition, the supremacy of “winning” is necessarily the highest good. The intelligence at work in their calculations of self-interest makes sense within their insular take on reality. In the alternative reality that’s centered on the comfort of mind and love rather than bodies, it makes no sense at all.