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The five factors

Asher Lawson and Kermant Kakkar reference the “widely-used” “five-factor psychological system for identifying personality traits” in the April 2022 issue of Scientific American [“Fake-News Sharers” p. 78]. Here are the five factors underlined (my interpretation added in brackets):

  • Openness to experience [i.e. involvement in external affairs vs. active pursuit of inner life / learning-growth through introspection, reflection-Intuition, contemplation; also vs. inaccessible mind stuck in unchanging status quo,]
  • Conscientiousness: orderliness, impulse control, conventionality, reliability [vs. social non-conformance but not relevant to individual Judgment without Feeling-Values / morality, order-fairness, discipline, accountability]
  • Extroversion
  • Agreeableness [vs. social unpleasantness but not relevant to individual Understanding, Honesty, sincerity. I.e. not relevant to individual recognition of / respect for Reality-Truth]
  • Neuroticism [Possible interpretation: wounded-crucified Psyche victimhood, hollowness-scarcity, unaccountability, specialness-taking , unfairness / wounding crucifying vs. sharing of Abundance, affirmation, empowerment, reciprocation, adaptability to changing contexts-circumstances, responsibility for improvement-progress, i.e. for changing-moving contexts forward.]

What’s wrong here?

The five-factor theory doesn’t allow for the crucial distinction between personality types in individual-intimate contexts-relationships vs. social-group contexts-relationships. Its categories overplay attributes associated with social types oriented to group activity-relationships in the external-material body-sensed environment and severely underplay attributes associated with individuals oriented to the Intuition-sensed inner life of mind and soul:

  • involvement in external experience without reference to involvement in internal experience
  • conscientiousness measured by social conventionality-reliability without reference to internal moral-values
  • extroversion / outward orientation without reference to introversion / inward orientation
  • agreeableness (pleasantness) without reference to alignment with Logic. Necessity, Reality or Truth that can be disagreeable (unpleasant).

By putting outward-oriented body-sensing attributes on the surface and muting inward-oriented mind-intuited attributes five-factor categories can be judged a clear attempt to invalidate the distinction. It can therefore be judged an attempt by the scientific community rabidly biased in favor of the philosophy of “realism” based on the presumed reality of bodies and material-sensed environment and against the philosophy of “idealism” based on reality of mind and soul.

If so, it stands in opposition to the philosophy of physics which is open to questioning “realism” based on the progress, or lack of progress, toward quantum gravity [ref: Adam Becker, “The Origins of Space and Time: Does Spacetime Emerge from a More Fundamental Reality?”, in Scientific American February 2022 pp. 28-33]. It also would stand in opposition to the philosophy of Plato which distinguishes between ideas-subjects within Mind and their material expressions-objects in the external world and, between the two, attributes reality to the former, not the latter. Except for Plato the person’s felt perception of divinity in the image of the cosmos, his philosophy, the foundation of Western thought, places reality firmly within Mind, not matter.

Myers-Briggs personality type theory and the rationality of Intuition

Myers-Briggs personality type theory, descended from Jungian psychology, is enriched by insights from Intuition that recognize the distinction between outward and inward orientations and project no evident bias between the two. Competition from the five factor theory would appear to be motivated by opposition-resistance to an “unscientific” approach that strays from quantifiables. By opposition to any theory, however rational, that challenges the supremacy (tyranny) of science’s sensory perception.

If so, science’s position is highly irrational because the scientific measurements of “quantifiables” cannot be up to the task of understanding the whole of human motivation. The very thought that it can is laughable. Who would disagree that human motivation incorporates the qualitative – minds, introspection, reflection, intuition, reasoning, subjective values-evaluating, judging, choosing – along with the quantitative – external objects, bodies and sensory perception? If science had its way personalities would be “measurable” chess-piece objects – automatons -- being maneuvered on a game board by binary search algorithms, not by minds, hearts, and souls thinking, feeling, and judging for themselves,. Not by sentient beings endowed with Psyches and Free Will.

Why debunk the five-factor personality type theory? Because it’s bunk.

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.

Letter to Adam Becker, Author, What Is Real? The Unfinished Quest for the Meaning of Quantum Physics
Visiting Scholar, Office for History of Science and Technology
University of California, Berkeley
Adam@freelanceastro.com

Science has staked its legitimacy on sensory perception -- the observation and measurement of quantifiable matter -- as the sole arbiter of reality. Matter at the level of quanta has revealed that it is not bound by the reality so defined. The logical foundation that science has chosen for itself, and the material reality it stands for, is called into question.

There being no alternative reality for which sensory perception can serve as proof, science must turn to systems thinking to understand its discoveries. Metaphysics, the branch of philosophy concerned with the logic of reality, belongs in the conversation. This should include ontology, the branch of metaphysics concerned with the logic of being. The dynamics of human motivation, personal growth, feelings, and relationships come into play, and this involves psychology. Yet another field to consult is theology, because it offers insights into mind that orders all forms of creation.

Yesterday, I submitted a letter to the Mind / Brain Editor of Scientific American commenting on an article by a neuroscientist, Christof Koch. His article, “Tales of the Dying Brain,” prompted my letter because it adheres to the article of faith in sensory perception that has rooted science in subjectivity and irrationality from the beginning, and I believe the time has come to place it on firmer logical ground.

My letter cites two invaluable sources: Your own What Is Real? The Unfinished Quest for the Meaning of Quantum Physics and Carlo Rovelli’s Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity. Both you and Rovelli appear troubled, as Einstein was, by matter that doesn’t respect science’s article of faith. Both, commendably, encourage physics to follow the trail wherever it leads, Rovelli with an open appeal for help from philosophy. But while you're both alert to the question of material reality, neither appears willing to question your faith -- to question the role of traditional physics and its dependence on sensory perception.

My letter to Scientific American suggests that the world revealed beyond matter, through quantum mechanics, and the dying brain, through near-death experiences, is one of two competing realities, only one of which can be real. Hawking was unapologetic in championing his profession's bias in favor of sensory perception. It was his, and yours and Rovelli’s prerogative, to do so. But it comes at a cost. Science insisting on the incorrect reality, in service to its institutional purposes, leads human understanding down the wrong road.

It leads to incorrect conclusions devoid of meaning and purpose. Add to this the cost of not leading human understanding toward correct conclusions that awaken us to meaning and purpose. Quantitative science measures. It doesn't evaluate. The courageous and talented physicists whose work is highlighted in your book are an inspiration. But they and their work -- their profession -- can't be the source of "meaning" in quantum physics. For this, we need other sources.

Weaning science off rigid dependence on sensory perception must be a paradigm shift too far or it would have happened over a century ago. I do not make light of yours or science’s institutional self-interests. But more than Professor Koch’s article, it is the state of our world that says it’s time for change, and what must change is our thinking. What must change is for theorists in every field, like yourself, to state the obvious: that humanity is succumbing not only to mass irrationality but also to mass extinction, that it’s flawed reasoning that got us here, and we must shift to a new paradigm of thinking before it’s too late.

My letter to Scientific American alludes to attributes of mind -- “intuition” and “reason beyond appearances” – that can access the objectivity this new paradigm will need. They deserve an explanation, and, hopefully, they will get it in the book I’m preparing for publication, tentatively titled The Story of the Child. I have criticized science for overplaying the story of matter when it’s the story of mind that can guide us. My book is an attempt, from one individual’s perspective, to explain what it means to “tell the story of mind.”

With integrity, honesty, and humanity, you are no doubt making great progress in your work. I would be honored if my letter to Scientific American, which follows, and my book were any help. Science needs help from philosophy, and I am pleased to humbly offer one response.

David C. Harrison
June 1, 2020