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Necessity

You envisioned me getting intimate with the hardass lives of American pioneers, bringing personal aspirations and tragedies to life with storytelling skill. Yet all it really takes is getting old. What did they face that oldness – a state of mind – doesn’t force on us every minute?

Necessity. Their lives were bound by it like planets locked in by gravity. What escapes work for us anymore? I read about other lives and pay attention when they cross my paths, and what strikes me is how the sun rises to motion and sound and then sets and whatever it is is all gone. Nothing really happened and even if it did whatever it was disappeared. What’s left in its wake is a reality I sense is there but, for all my reflecting and philosophizing, I can't figure out what it is.

Companionship of another kind, loneliness of another kind

It’s not malign. It’s not hiding from us. It’s not demanding that we drop everything and pay attention. If it wants anything maybe it’s just to be noticed. Not recognized or known because that’s asking too much. Just so we’re aware. So whatever sensible or senseless business we’re about won’t make us forget. That it’s part of our business? I don’t know. I never paid much attention before but now I feel it. A kind of companionship that comes with a kind of loneliness I’ve never felt before.

I cling. Not to one relationship or to one place. Not to the memory of one event but to all of it. Everything. In a fury of sentiment and despair I cast about for a thing that can be embraced. It was all bodies and limbs, stuff that wound up in piles, so why not? If life slips through our fingers why can’t we retrieve it with fingers? Love and be thankful for it with an embrace, with a caress?

Ridiculous. I’m embarrassed. If it’s hard in this world to change mind what’s really hard is to be mind. The leash I brought to the dog park doesn’t have a dog on it anymore and I can’t adapt. I know I came to the dog park for a reason. Logic keeps telling me Carry on carry on! But something’s not the same, and it’s getting more and more not the same. Can there be motion and sound out of mind? Is this the companion that makes me cling to my life?

Something new under the sun

I complain and the answer I get back is Don’t worry, we’re all clinging. To what? To you. We need you. I guess that makes me feel better. But I want a dog on the end of my leash! A dog I can pet, you know? That loves me and plays with me. A dog I can see. What you’ll see will be much better than a dog. Your body is what’s keeping you from seeing it. From experiencing Life. Maybe what you sense is there when you walk along the bluff, when the sun breaks through the clouds over the ocean, is what’s waiting for you. It’s there. You’ll see it. Through different eyes, that’s all.

Life conditions us to think of ourselves and our surroundings in a certain way and then it fades away, structure and all. And when it does, the ocean comes back into view from the bluff, the sun breaking through the clouds. Pulling me back or forward? I don't know. For now, it's just there. A feeling. Hope and anticipation with moving on. Melancholy and grief with leaving behind. Sobering unfamiliarity, the necessity of the inevitable.

Something new under the sun. Another test, another chance, to adapt. Whatever it wants, whatever it means, it's got my attention.

The logical case for science giving up its illogical insistence that matter is real begins with this: it judges all that sensory perception detects to be measurable and therefore real. Plato held that what is Real is not the object but the idea or thought of it. He thereby took the locus of determination outside of matter, where it did not belong, and placed it within Mind where it did belong. He did so not on the basis of “verifiable” scientific experimentation but on the basis of Logic. He was a “rationalist,” a philosopher who trusted Reason to guide him to Reality and Truth.

Yet he believed in the reality of the material cosmos – the inspiration of what he perceived to be an expression of the Divine. Had he reconciled this belief with his doubt that the uninspiring human body and its material trappings could also be real he might have followed sensory perception into the study of matter. He might even have done so with some of the passion he devoted to Mind.

Aristotle’s paradigm shift away from Plato’s rationalism toward science, the belief that the study of matter, the stuff of sensory perception, can lead to Reality and Truth, was not, as science would have us believe, a categorical renunciation of Plato’s Logic nor of its theories. It was simply an acknowledgement that they couldn’t be proven. While sensory perception, with its access to plants and animals and the like, does offer a kind of “proof” for the theories of science.

While neither Plato nor Aristotle could go anywhere with the belief that the reality of an object lay in the thought of it, or with Plato’s hesitation over its unreality, both were in agreement that Mind is nevertheless Real. Both were therefore in agreement that an object did not depend for its reality on its being perceived by the body’s senses. Why? Because Mind does not depend for its Reality on being perceived by the body’s senses. Science that would have us believe that only that which can be thus perceived is provably real contradicts the reality of Mind. Contradicts the source of all of science’s contributions to the “quest for knowledge”: Mind. Contradicts itself, the minds of scientists who engage in self-referential thinking, the absurd notion that bodies that belong to the same material environment, subject to identical “laws” of science, can objectively judge its reality.

Hawking’s “quest for knowledge” belongs in quotes because, with circular reasoning, we must acknowledge that even with sensory perception to guide science we can never truly “know” anything. We can perceive it, but perception is perception. It is, in fact, not even the body’s senses that make perception but the psychological act of projection. We are a long way from objects telling us anything about themselves but their appearances, and appearances are deceiving. In fact, this may well be their main purpose: to deceive, and science that puts its faith in appearances may be its willing victim.

To approach Knowledge of our Self and the environment that is our true Home – our origin and our destination – is to fall back on the Intuition, the reflections and thoughts, of the rationalist Plato for guidance. To fall back on Logic, because the body and its ally science, that conveniently ignores the immateriality of Mind, is leading us in circles. To the behavior of matter – quantum mechanics – that calculates to perfection but doesn’t add up.

What happened to the celebrity of Einstein and the promise of physics: the theory of everything? This was to be the crowning achievement of Aristotle’s instinct. It disappeared and along with it the fanfare of physics. We continue on with the labors of science, breaking new ground in other fields, still refusing to accept the Logic of Mind that Reality need not and does not depend on the sensate body. Science that lionizes the truth refuses to face fact. Science that prides itself on the intellectual rigor of its theories and their predictions, on impeccable Logic, accepts blatant contradiction. Science that purges itself of religious and political bias indulges in its own institutional bias worthy of the Church.

In science we aren’t dealing with an expression of Plato’s or Aristotle’s ideals. We’re dealing with a perversion of a rationalist’s ideal of the highest and best use of Mind: to seek Reality and Truth by whatever means that meet the test of Logic.

It is time, over a century since Bohr and the Copenhagen Interpretation acknowledged it, for science and philosophy both to turn to Logic. To acknowledge that the simultaneous reality of two opposing states – Mind not-matter and matter not-mind – does not meet the test of Logic. To acknowledge that between Mind and matter, the opposite matter can’t be real. To assume otherwise is to contradict Plato and Aristotle and declare that Mind is not Real.

There will always be much to learn from the study of matter, but finding Reality and the Truth behind appearances isn’t it. The “quest for knowledge” must turn back in earnest to Plato and his unfinished philosophy. To Logic.

Does all this make me a doubter of science, a denier? My prayers at weekly prayer meetings in my youth invariably concluded with appeals to God for special consideration, not on my behalf but on behalf of scientists. And for this I was teased. My concern about their performance is motivated by admiration, not animosity. I do not wish to weaken their intellectual, cultural, or political support but to strengthen it. To make their heroic work less vulnerable to attack from their unthinking doubters, not more so. If my views appear to put me in the company of the opposition, I am the loyal opposition. I want science and its “quest for knowledge” to succeed, not to fail.

So, No, I am not a denier, nor am I an enemy of Democracy. I am a fan of both who understands that Free Choice cannot endure without the Free Spirit of Inquiry. We just have to get it right.

Logos: . . . human reasoning about the cosmos. . . Identified with God, it is the source of all activity . . . the power of reason . . the word of God, which itself has creative power and is God’s medium of communication with the human race. . . divine wisdom . . . .

Logic: . . . Valid reasoning. . . The relationship between elements and between an element and the whole in a set of objects, individuals, principles, or events. . . .

[American Heritage Dictionary]

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The Interconnectedness of Logic

Everything and nothing are subject to Logic including Mind. Everything and nothing are conditions that have attributes not necessarily in Reality or unreality, but in Logic.

Logic is its own state governed by its own rules, by its own conditions and their attributes. Enforced by its own authority, Energy. It is its own source, authority, and legitimacy. What it is and what it does are one in the same: implications.

Follow the money –Deep Throat’s advice to Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward when they were unraveling a notorious political cover-up for the Washington Post that would end a U.S. administration. Advice that turned up answers because they were interconnected by the coherence and cohesion of Logic.

There is no question, no place, no self in Mind or no-Mind, in Reality or unreality, that cannot be positioned somewhere in this interconnectedness and set in motion forward toward the premises, hypotheses, and predictions of theories that are Logic’s own guidance. It is, and cannot be by its own Logic, subject to guidance, influence, or control from any source outside of itself. In the context of Logic there are no “others” and no opposites of Logic in a state of opposites, for even illogic has its Logic: the conditions, attributes, and implications of not being Logic.

The Energy and Discipline of Logic

The Energy of Logic flows from implications and interconnections never being at rest, never being finished, never not being in motion forward. From Energy at the “beginning,” in timelessness, the start of the sequence of Logic, when the state of statelessness could not rest without yielding to its opposite, the state of Mind-Being. The Oneness of Mind-Being is eternally at rest, but being the seed of Creation its Logic required events that led to eternal unrest: the marriage of the Child’s Parents, Mind with Love, and the Child’s role in Creation with Free Will. It was Freedom of Choice that logically could not remain at rest within Oneness. It was the Logic of Creation and the Child’s role in it that brought forth the state of opposites.

The Energy of Logic follows it everywhere throughout the state of opposites:

* from the Reality, Creations, Life, Light, and Worth of the Child’s Consciousness and Creativity, which yield to the essence, purity, and beauty of their Logic

* to the illogic of their opposites, the unreality of destruction, death, darkness, and worthlessness of mindlessness, non-being, inertia, and fear, attributes of unconsciousness.

While Logic is employed by Mind for Mind’s stance of Being, it is not controlled by anything. Logic is its own discipline because it is discipline: the discipline of attributes, implications, and their interconnections. The discipline of definition. It is its own Being because its implications and interconnections are everywhere and infinite. There can be no end to how “deep” and how “far” they go because they are their own context, their own universe. They can “exist” with equal force in the infinity of timelessness – in the eternal Now – and in the temporality of past and future, with only a “present” that can’t be a Now.

Logic is in Mind but of itself, its own state whose scope, whose reach, extends beyond Mind and its state of Being, Oneness, Reality, Creation, Worth, and their illusory opposites to the separation between Mind and no-mind – statelessness -- that is no illusion. To the seed of Energy, the eternal restlessness of Inquiry, the singularity, the Logical origin and sequencing of everything from one point to the next: Logic.

The Logic and Illogic of Separation

Separation between statelessness and its opposite, Mind-Being, can be no illusion because the state of opposites has two dimensions: one the context of the Child’s part in Parent-Mind’s Reality-Creation which exists side-by-side with the possibility of unconsciousness and its illusion of unreality and dream of untruth – our material world. The other lies beyond Reality-Creation with an entirely different possibility from the beginning: the seminal possibility of statelessness, of no mind, no being, that aroused the power of Logic, its Energy, to produce its opposite.

So, while it is true, as Jesus teaches in A Course in Miracles, that separation is not Real within the Child’s context of Reality-Creation, in the sequence of events that preceded the Child, separation of a kind, between the Mind that produced Reality-Creation and the possibility of its opposite, had to be Real. Real not in the sense of Reality as a part of Creation but as a part of Logic.

There are many “separations” within the interconnectedness of Logic that are no more than definitions that distinguish rather than separate. Distinctions between the Selves of Reality Creations -- Father Mind and Mother Love, Parents and Child, Child and his living Creations. Distinctions between the thoughts of a Child-Mind that’s Conscious and a Child-mind that’s unconscious. All combined in one state of Mind by the interconnectedness of Logic.

Outside of Reality-Creation, the state that preceded it and exists beyond it, separation is more than a distinction. It has actual possibilities, not merely unreal possibilities, and is therefore consequential. Because everything and the only thing that connects opposites is the fact that they are opposites. Is the link established through the implications of Logic and their interconnections. Is the Logic – “Logos” – that ties everything together. The tying-of-everything-together that may be the notion of “God.”

“God” at Peace and War

“God” may be a synonym for the Child’s Parents Mind-Love in Reality-Creation, though “Parents” will suffice. I have avoided the notion of “God” but acknowledge it now because I have experienced a “felt perception of the interconnectedness of things.” It was spontaneous, un-premeditated, with only one other experience, a long time ago, to prepare me for it. It was of mind and feeling in an abstract way but also deeply personal, intimate. The Logic of intimacy is something very precious that is forever. Like being touched by Love. Who has not felt it at some time in their lives? Who does not want to feel it?

I riff. “God” may be the Force that comes from not being at rest, that endlessly seeks Order: Perfection, Resolution, Peace – the whole number value of Pi. That seeks wholeness, harmony, unity. Force-Energy at the beginning that couldn’t be at rest with the condition of statelessness, that was caused by the logically untenable, illogical condition of statelessness that required resolution, inevitably led to the state of opposites with the birth of the Child with Freedom of Choice and a central role in Creation.

God-Logos seeking Order-resolution thus produced not only eternal irresolution-competition but a second source of Energy: from friction between opposites. An attribute of disorder, of irresolution and its unrest, is constant, eternal Force-Energy, of a Will toward resolution and rest without friction, without competition and conflict. The Will of God-Logos may be eternally toward Peace. Yet the ultimate source of conflict-unrest may also be a God-Logos of Peace and Order not being at Peace, being in opposition to the condition of statelessness, of no Mind-Being, unable logically to be at rest with it. God-Logos in opposition to itself: the Will to Peace whose Logic eventually produced the state of opposites. The state of eternal conflict.

The Dark Matter of Science and the Allegory of Plato’s Cave

Plato’s philosophy ended before it could be finished. It ran into a contradiction in his Logic: the unreality of body-matter versus the reality of cosmos-matter. Parmenides, his mentor, saw no contradiction: all appearances are illusory. But Plato's pupil, Aristotle, took thought in another direction. He moved Plato’s inquiry off the attributes and implications of Mind onto the attributes and implications of matter. It was a momentous, historic shift, for philosophy that was to guide Western thought ever since moved away from Reason onto the study of biology and a beginning in science. To science’s “quest for knowledge,” guided by the body’s senses: the Logic of sensory perception that at once enlightens us and confuses us. That ultimately condemns us to captivity in the darkness of Plato’s Cave.

An inquiring and honest mind confused by matter will make a mistake in Judgment. But in its consequences science’s faith in the body’s senses is anything but a harmless mistake. Far from living up to its promise, it’s produced an atrocity: mass extinction. In the darkness of Plato’s Cave we bring our children and grandchildren into an expiring world.

How long must this go on?

* Until the thread of Plato’s inquiry into the Logic of Mind is picked up again by philosophy and pursued with serious intent.

* Until science’s “quest for knowledge” is freed from its illogical premise: the reality of matter.

* Until Logic is re-established in the affairs of a species intent on its own destruction because it chooses to be guided by a substitute illusory self that has no Memory of Logic or the wish to retrieve it.

* Until humanity that lives by an impossibility, the belief that we are bodies disconnected and isolated, each of us our own singularity, our own specialness, authors of our own truths, rulers of our delusional worlds, gives up the insane belief that by abandoning the limits of Logic we achieve Freedom.

Insanity – the Logic of illogic: equating opposites. The “logic” of our delusions that equate captivity with Freedom. Pain with pleasure, suffering and death with Happiness and Life. That equate matter, that can only be a projection of Mind unconscious, with Reality that can only be a Creation of Mind that’s Conscious. Matter, that can only be an appearance in a dream - a façade, a deceit -- with Truth.

Our world beset by entropy plunges forward with technology that pits one against another while there is yet to be seen any movement toward unity in our minds. Any glimmer, any hope, of sanity. Aristotle’s paradigm shift has run its course in one branch of science, quantum mechanics, that openly questions the reality of matter. Is it not time to ask: what will lead us out of Plato’s Cave? How do we awaken?

The Way Home Is Logic

Follow the Logic. Start with the attributes of our circumstances – the facts. Reflect on their implications and let their interconnections carry us forward. Never mind wishes and fears, the lures and distractions of entertaining thoughts, the seductive pleasures of sensations and feelings, the satisfactions of ownership and investment in the foolishness and corruption of “wealth” and “power.” Be done with the allure of opposites, appearances and deceptions that offer self-gratification and deliver nothing of Worth. Be done with the losing of “winning,” the ruination of relationships meant to share and empower with Truth, that succumb instead to the delusion of possession and control.

Everything I have is who I am. The Child of Parents Mind married to Love. Free Will. This is the Truth. Not what this world of matter tells us. Not what we have “learned” in Plato’s Cave: “Everything I am is what I have.” An object possessed and controlled. No wonder our world is a descent into self-devouring self-interests! No wonder we can’t “win” for losing! No wonder we can’t think!

Follow the Logic. Turn to the side of Mind governed by Logic that employs Logic. That’s married to Love and would never deviate from the caring, the sharing and empowerment of its values, its Worth. It will take us home.

Where can Logic be found? What is Memory for? That’s where it can be found: in Intuition. What is Mind for that isn’t cluttered with the daily busy-ness of the brain? That’s where Logic can be found: in Thinking. In what thinking does: Reasoning.

Who says so? Our own Minds say so. Who will lead its occupants out of Plato’s Cave? They will. With their own native ability to Think. With Logic.

Letter to Carlo Rovelli, Director, Quantum Gravity Group
Centre de Physique Théorique (CPT), Aix-Marseille University
Author, Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity (2017)

Re: Appeal from theoretical physics to philosophy for help understanding the meaning of quantum gravity

The approach to the task of physics presented in Reality Is Not What It Seems strikes me as reasonable. This in contrast to the approach propounded by Stephen Hawking, because you acknowledge the limits of experimental science and allow a role for philosophy while he, notoriously, did not. For him, “Philosophy is dead.” For you, it becomes essential.

The occasion to express my thanks and admiration has finally arrived. Today, I submitted a letter to the Mind / Brain Editor of Scientific American commenting on an article by a neuroscientist, Christof Koch. The 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 its very beginning, and I believe the time has come, with your appeal to philosophy, to place it on firmer logical ground.

My letter cites yours and Adam Becker’s recent book, What Is Real? The Unfinished Quest for Meaning in Quantum Physics. Both authors, troubled and confused as Einstein was by matter that doesn’t respect science’s article of faith, appear to believe that a road still lies ahead for traditional physics. You, in particular, breezed by Schroedinger’s observation that science by sensory perception is circular reasoning without reflecting on it, nor did you credit Parmenides and his School of Reason with common sense.

Yet both sources should be taken as prominent red flags for science, for I believe they point in the direction of the “philosophy” that can make sense of quantum gravity. That is, if the “other reality” that I allude to in my letter to Scientific American is understood for what I’ve implied that it is: one of two competing realities, only one of which can be real. Science has been insisting that the incorrect one is real -- matter rather than mind, -- not in service to the truth but in service to its own institutional purposes.

Hawking was unapologetic in championing his profession and made his own and his profession’s bias very clear. It was his, and yours and Becker’s prerogative, to do so. But it comes at a cost. The cost is continuing to lead human understanding down the wrong road, 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.

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 explain what it’s all about. 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, posted on my website, and my book were any help. Quantum gravity has called for help from philosophy, and I am pleased to humbly offer one response.

David C. Harrison
May 31, 2020