Overture
 

Truth is an Endgame

 



OPUS IV

 

 

 

The Great Cosmic Joke

 

 

 

 

Something unknown is doing we don’t know what – that is what our theory amounts to. It does not sound a particularly illuminating theory. (Sir Arthur Eddington)

 

 

 

 

The illusion from seeing is so compelling that it has fooled an entire species into making them believe and participate in its vast duplicity. And so this species has forsaken the in side of reality by making the out side of reality (the world of appearance) all that there is.

 

Our existence (to ‘stand-out’) comes about only through ruse or deception. It can happen no other way. This is because the separate realities that come from seeing and being seen are results of the same process; and their interference thus cancels out a full dimension of reality, a dimension we can certainly feel, but can never see.

 

I’m not trying to be cryptic. It’s just that the great irony of nature, which must surely occasion a smile amongst the gods, is that the process by which our universe sees itself cleverly conceals the process creating, re-creating and/or maintaining itself. And both processes are all about a simple transformation of energy and that one, simple, fundamental principle: the principle of perpetual change, which, when finally understood, changes!

God is a comedian, playing to an audience too afraid to laugh. (Voltaire) 

The Joke: A visible world of appearance emerges from the invisible world of substance as waves are transformed (quantized) into particles, so that a limited form of an unlimited reality can be observed. And limited means finite. Hence, dreaming or awake, at work or at play, we live and die within two separate physical realities.

 

The Joke: the world we see is an entirely different construct from the actuality we feel. This is the answer to the riddle of existence. The observed world is an entirely separate reality, a virtual reality constructed accordingly. This is said not to demean it, but to bring observation and its venerated “world of appearances” back down to earth. The illusion we perceive is because we perceive and is an operant necessity, and, of course, must be maintained and respected. You cannot operate a vehicle through any major city by thinking four-dimensionally.

 

The Joke is based on the miracle of vision and its great tool, memory. We participate in the ruse through our theories (“a looking”) of what these visions and memories might mean*. The beautiful color and clarity we see in the world (not to mention its particularity), is the wonder of three dimensionality. But it’s a facade, a necessary one, but nevertheless does not exist in actuality; and, in fact, defines virtuality: reality in effect, but not necessarily in fact.

 

In our world of perpetual change, nature can be thought of as the entire process that works to bring about a finite world of non-change so we, as universal representatives, can see it. Our folly – the great cosmic joke itself – is to believe only in the world of non-change because it’s all we can see; and to ignore the greatest clue ever given toward our true nature and identity: that which we can feel and measure: the frictional effect we call weight. Instead, we have bred the ultimate sacred cow; an unopposed, one-way force called gravity.

 

The Sacred Cow of gravity is not really a cow at all, but a rhinoceros, a creature with a single horn on its head and a single idea in its tiny mind: to bear down all opposition by its sheer armoured weight. (G&L, p. 52, Alan McGlashen)

 

The Joke: the local, 3-d reality we live and die in, work and play in, wake and dream in does not exist in fact. It exists only in effect.

 

So part of this story is about that theory of observation called quantum mechanics and how our visual reality comes about; how we absorb something from everything! But unlike the orthodox, Copenhagen view, it’s also about what remains between the ‘slices of space-time’ we are allowed to see. And how the purpose of Universe (why?), which the quantum represents, can give us information leading to the process of universe (how?). If only it were acknowledged.

 

Weight is how you see in a world of perpetual flux, the philosophy and cosmology which came to ancient Greece in the sixth century B.C. via Heraclitus and rediscovered early in the 20th century. In this world, everything changes. Including the eyes that see! And, of course, if the eye that sees changes just like what it sees, then how can it see the change?

 

Unless there is some unknown reason for all the technology that would eventually further the development of the human body and its relationship to its source**, then the vast measurement and categorizing campaign we’re all involved in (science) becomes a monumental exercise in futility. It has immense usability, utility and so is pragmatically justified to be sure. But ultimately significant? The carrier of truth? Forget it. It is just not philosophically meaningful.

 

 The Legacy Of The Fall:

 

Universe, which is us, wants to see itself. And so we, ignorant of the nature of our participation, are condemned to “suffer the process”.

 

So this is about the distinction between in here and out there and the participation that makes it so. It’s about feeling the weight of the world as it acts upon us, and the overall difference between sensation and perception.

 

The problem is that all along we’ve been so concerned about what we see (and measure, define and categorize), instead of how we see it, or, perhaps most importantly, why we’re here to see it in the first place. And since a whole is always more than the sum of its parts, the reductionism we’ve chosen to exploit dooms us to endure the consequences of our folly: a totally wrong picture of our world and our role in it.

 

Just as we cannot show the bare simplicity of universe without first undoing the vast complexity we’ve woven into it, we likewise cannot show the stunning beauty and enchantment of the true four-dimensionality we live in without uncovering all the ugliness and duplicity of ‘the bright shining lie’. Otherwise, no one would believe it. Incredulity defeats us. Again:

 

What is eternal (divine ) escapes men's notice because of their incredulity. (Heraclitus, fragment 86)

 

So this is the Story Within a Story, the sickness of soul and obsession with self, the result of man’s worst pollutant: bad, erroneous, just-plain-wrong philosophy.

 

We live in a time of moral nihilism  and a blind worship of technology, combined with a rejection of the spiritual dimension of life. Television, movies, computers, video games, the Internet, artificial intelligence. These are the gods of our times. Our leaders are morally bankrupt, shameless hypocrites, feigning piety but devoid of real spirituality. We live in a time in which university scholars belittle spirituality, scorn religion, and bow deeply to the alter of science.1

 

It seems the writers of fiction spread more truth throughout the world than those who we’ve entrusted to do so.

 

Lies, lies, lies. When are people going to start believing in the truth? How can we ever believe in the truth? We are lied to by advertisers constantly. We are lied to by news people, politicians, police, teachers, professors, preachers, scientists, salesmen, doctors, lawyers, practically anyone in business… Everybody lies. Because everybody is selling something – if not their exalted selves. An exaggeration is a lie; whether a white lie, a bold lie, even a necessary (“for your own good”) lie. Lying by omission is a lie. Untruths. Half truths. It is all lying; and the worst lies of all are the lies we tell our selves that justifies lying to others.

 

We live in a world ruled by fictions of every kind - mass merchandising, advertising, politics conducted as a branch of advertising, the instant translation of science and technology into popular imagery, the increasing blurring and intermingling of identities within the realm of consumer goods, the preempting of any free or original imaginative response to experience by the television screen.

 

We live inside an enormous novel. For the writer in particular it is less and less necessary for him to invent the fictional content of his novel. The fiction is already there. The writer's task is to invent the reality.”2 (Ballard)

 

Because we have chosen to live under the umbrella of belief. We have become addicted to our beliefs We need the authority of experts and the acceptance of others to make us secure and to spread the blame for our self inflicted incarceration. We cannot accept the responsibility of unlimited freedom of thought, our birthright. We have become a civilization of narrow, bright thinkers. We cherish those who can memorize facts and thus win such game shows as ‘Jeopardy'. But our beliefs have grown barriers to deep, comprehensive thinking. As soon as imagination confronts belief it is stopped in its tracks.

 

 

Mission control (“the gods”, or God, or the “X factor”) cannot create a livable, perceivable world with any permanence. It is simply not possible. But they could create a means of life where observation and memory made it appear so.

 

The Source:

 

Ignorance comes from what we ignore, just as knowledge comes from what we acknowledge. The world of appearance is a playground or a prison. You are free to make your own choice.

 

Around 2600 years ago a man crossed the Aegean Sea into Greece. He brought with him an already ancient truth that the hordes – just as the hordes have done today – refused to acknowledge. What he brought was the logos: nothing less than the purpose and process (why and how) of universe. (See Aug_09, pp5)

 

This 6th century B.C. philosopher was Heraclitus, called variously “the dark philosopher”, “the weeping philosopher, and “the occidental Taoist”. His message was simple:

 

Things, as we are aware of them through our organs of touch, taste, sight, and hearing, are all in constant flux and therefore our sense organs cannot give us knowledge. (Encyclopaedia Britannica)

 

In other words, the things that are seen and the things that see both constitute the “things” that Heraclitus refers to as being in “constant flux”, also called perpetual change. This brings about what I call the Heraclitean Principle: if the eye that sees changes like what it sees, then it will not, indeed cannot, see the change. This is augmented by Thilly: “…the illusion of permanence was explained by the constant proportion maintained at each stage in the process of change…”3 (F. Thilly) Just like in Poincare’s Riddle World! “The cosmic process is not haphazard or arbitrary, but in accordance with ‘fixed measure':

 

This one order of things neither any one of the gods nor of men has made, but it always was, is, and ever shall be, an ever-living fire, kindling according to fixed measure and extinguishing according to fixed measure.

 

The Sequence:

 

The main theme, the utmost argument in this work, centers on our erroneous notions of size, duration and infinity; notions that have been drummed into us for millennia. All other themes and purposes stem from this realization. Hence, the need, nay, the necessity for a new way of thought that encompasses our separate realities. One must be psychologically acceptable to operate in; and one logically capable to contemplate and create new understanding in science, philosophy and religion.

 

But when a man sees with a new awareness, it is difficult – if not downright impossible – to communicate this awareness to others. Ouspensky speaks of this:

 

If a butterfly sees and learns more, it is unable to tell the caterpillars anything about it. [It no longer exists in the world of caterpillars] … something analogous must happen to people to whom the mysteries of time and eternity are revealed. They know and can speak of what they know, but people will neither hear nor understand them. (P.D. Ouspensky, A New Mode of The Universe, pp 420)

 

As we begin to realize what the simple act of seeing has hidden from us all these millennia, the idea of a fourth spatial dimension becomes the greatest discovery in all of science. Because true four-dimensionality is the destroyer of the finite realm and the great cosmic joke that it is.

 

Actuality is growing before our eyes. It is hiding in plain sight as the fourth dimension. Seeing ‘normalizes’ our world by rendering a constantly changing (transforming) four-dimensional growth into three dimensional permanence. At least twice in our history, the truth behind this ruse was presented to the hordes and was rejected and replaced by a normalized alternative.

 

Frank Thilly tells us about the first western philosophers, and how the growth of their world was actually built into the language. And what a coincidence; at the same time, he does it by giving us the origin of the word physics:

 

...their aim was to determine the nature, or physis of these things [that exist; that are accessible to the senses]...The word physis had at that time but few of the overtones of the word nature by which we translate it. The word originally pertained to the act of growth [!] and to the source from which growth springs, so that to seek the nature of a thing was to seek the one underlying, living and generative reality from which the manifold things that exist spring...For the Milesian school, [“the first philosophical school of Greece”]...reality is thought of in terms of growth and generation.”3

 

Alfred Weber then brings us to the theme of this work:

 

His philosophy [Anaximenes, the “Milesian school"”], which is a more exact formulation of Anaximander's doctrine, may be summarized in the following words: infinite matter, a perpetual motion of condensation and rarefaction that is something like a plastic principle, necessity directing the motion.4

 

Anaximenes' notion of successive change of matter by rarefaction and condensation was influential in later theories. It is developed by Heraclitus and criticized by Parmenides [the philosopher of permanence]. His general theory of how the materials of the world arise is adopted by Anaxagoras, even though the latter has a very different theory of matter. Both Melissus and Plato (Timaeus 49b-c) see Anaximenes' theory as providing a common-sense explanation of change.5

 

This “source”, or “well-spring” of “growth” is where science and philosophy got its start in the western world during the 6th  and perhaps 7th century B.C. And when it was re-discovered in the 1920s it was unanimously rejected in the same way as it was in ancient Greece in the fifth century BC.

 

Anaximander recognized that “...the ground of all determinate existence could not itself be determined.” Then came Heraclitus, where “philosophy found its locus standi. ‘Wisdom is one thing. It is to know the thought by which all things are steered through all things’. Here for the first time, attention is centred, not on the thing known, but on the knowing of it. Thought, (‘judgement’ or ‘understanding’) controls the phenomena as it constitutes the thinker…Heraclitus asserted that the universe was intelligible because it was ruled by ‘thought’ or ‘judgement’, and that the same principle, therefore, governed both existence and knowledge. He was conscious that this wisdom surpassed even the loftiest conception of Greek mythopoeic thought.

 

Heraclitus calls this wisdom logos, a term so heavily laden with associations as to be an embarrassment whether we translate it or not…the Logos  is not mentioned before Heraclitus and  Parmenides.6 [Since Parmenides refers to Heraclitus and not the other way around, it is now thought that Heraclitus predates Parmenides.]

 

In the history of the soul becoming a self: “Heraclitus had declared being a perpetual becoming and had correlated the two concepts with his ‘hidden attunement’. Now Parmenides declared the two to be mutually exclusive, and only being to be real... In the strictly idealistic position of Parmenides the autonomy of thought is vindicated, and every concrescence of myth is stripped off.” (Ibid)

 

Does this sound familiar? It should because it is exactly what happened in the creation of “the new physics” some 2500 years later. This is where Niels Bohr and Max Born made the wave-particle duality mutually exclusive and pronounced “the victory” of the particle as being the real McCoy – to the exclusion of the wave. All under the innocent sounding name of Complimentarity.

 

To answer and refute Heraclitus’ change (also called becoming) and ‘save the appearances’, Parmenides produced his doctrine of permanence (also called being): “Parmenides is the true founder of the philosophy of permanence since he develops the Doctrine of permanence into a complete system of ontology.” Although Plato adopted both concepts to construct his theory of eternal Ideals, history has certainly followed Parmenides. As Sir Arthur Eddington said:

 

Is it too much to say that the mind's search for permanence has created the world of physics?7

 

And yet no ‘permanence’ has ever been found in any aspect of science. To this day. And by a remarkable coincidence, physics, the science of measurement and motion, re-discovered this ‘perpetual flux’ in the early part of the 20th century. But to them, it was to become a cancer in their midst called “the measurement problem”. Or “Reality Crisis”. (Is it just another coincidence that there is a  measurement problem living right at the center of the science of measurement?)

 

Science, like philosophy has sought to escape the doctrine of perpetual flux by finding some permanent substratum amid changing phenomenon...The doctrine of perpetual flux, as taught by Heraclitus, is painful, and science, as we have seen, can do nothing to refute it. (Bertrand Russell)                                                                                  

 

All objects of atomic size fluctuate continually...The fluctuations are not observable with any ordinary large-scale equipment.  (Freeman Dyson)

 

Although totally ignored, these are remarkable admissions coming as they do from one of our most famous philosophers and backed by one of our most famous physicists. Perpetual flux not only cannot be refuted, but is also verified by 20th century physics!

 

Karl Popper says in a word what the conflict amounts to. Because for Heraclitus,

 

Truth lies in having grasped the essential becoming of nature, i.e., having represented it as implicitly infinite, as a process in itself.

 

And there it is: “infinite, as a process in itself”. This would be intolerable to Science.

 

In the early development of quantum theory we find the same argument going on between Irwin Schrödinger and Max Born.  A wave-world leading to infinite picturesque notions with astonishing explanatory powers, or a finite, uncertain, ur-zone of mathematical equations “into which we cannot enter”; yet still based only on what can be observed and gives only descriptive information, nothing explanatory.

 

As reported earlier , in 1987, it was found that it takes one light quantum, or ‘photon’, to start the process of vision; one photon that precisely matches the photoreceptor in the retina and ignites “the molecules of visual excitation”. This seemingly match made in heaven, is a bit too coincidental to be a random accident of nature.

 

According to the physicist Eric Lerner: “Bohr and Heisenberg interpreted the uncertainty principle in an odd way: it is not a limit on our ability to measure phenomena; rather, it means that an electron or photon materializes in a given spot only when it is measured.8

 

Somewhere between the light wave and the eye, a magical transformation takes place to create the light particle. And since the retina of the eye is the ‘end-user’, so to speak, it seems to me that that must be where it is created! This has enormous and profound epistemological consequences for science and philosophy in general and physics in particular – especially in the interpretation of quantum theory. Yet since “there is no science of sciences” to intercommunicate these branches, no one acknowledges it. Since all observation/measuring devices that we use are patterned after our very own sensations, could it be that the entire world of particles is created right in the medium observing or measuring it?

 

Its particularity is the price we pay for its visibility.9

 

This means one of perhaps three things. Either we live in two separate physical and causal realities; one of substance and one of appearance (and all that invokes), OR, the entire ‘finite realm’ of appearances, which we’ve grown so accustomed to over the millennia, is an illusion. OR, both.

 

What actually “happens”? To recapitulate:

There are light waves. There are light particles.

There are matter waves. There are matter particles.

Light waves are transformed into photons in order to see.

Matter waves are transformed into electrons/protons in order to be seen.

 

Either the former ‘happens’ in here, the latter, out there; or, both happen in here in order to grasp ‘something from everything’ out there (For it seems only discreet, ‘bits’ of information from the five senses can be processed by the brain).

 

Or, both happen depending on which reality is invoked.

This is the crux of all happening.

 

finale

 

As universe enters the final act of its current cyclical drama, man is finally awakening to its paradoxical nature; he is at last beginning to acknowledge a purpose and hints of its process – the ultimate duality – and, most importantly, the threshold betwixt.

 

For it has been slowing dawning on man that the invisible world of substance (process) creates the familiar world of appearance (purpose) through the miraculous act of perception. The upshot of this realization leads inexorably to the necessity for two separate, quite physical, realities: the world of appearance and the world of substance, that which “stands below” and sustains appearances (through the dynamics of gravitation, weight, and other frictional effects, such as electro-static and electro-magnetic energy) .

 

THE PROBLEM

The world is a four-dimensional space-time continuum. This is Albert Einstein’s great legacy. What he discovered in his work on relativity and quantum mechanics was other-worldly, literally, a separate physical reality, a continuous reality with a “fourth degree of freedom of motion.”!

 

But nothing continuous seems to get into the brain. The only reality we perceive seems to be three dimensional and totally discontinuous.

 

What I have found – and the reason I’m writing a silly book about it – is that, contrary to the beliefs of most of the scientific community, this fourth dimension is not only a very real existential phenomenon, but that the reality it presents to our sensations is the very essence of simplicity and economy. And it reduces the entire three dimensional envelope of reality to an effect of this fourth dimension as it acts upon the process of observation we covet so much.

 

Moreover, when the latest discoveries concerning the physiology of ‘seeing’ with the eyes is taken into account – i.e., the startling coincidence that a single quantum of light ignites, or is born within, a single photoreceptor in the eye – we can say that quantum mechanics, that marvelously accurate process of observation/measurement, is not a theory of physical reality at all, but a marvelous theory of perception and measurement. What Planck and Einstein discovered was how reality gets transformed from a continuum to a discontinuous state, so we can see it!

 

Nature hath adapted the eyes of the Lilliputians to all objects proper for their view. (J. Swift, Gulliver’s Travels)

 

Through the separate rules of quantum theory (not quantum mechanics), i.e., making the experimental and computational results conform to “our way of thought” (Heisenberg), the separate states of mass-energy – particles and waves – were kept exclusively at the quantum level of size. But once it’s finally realized that the laws of nature don’t change, but that reality itself changes while the laws stay the same, the hoary head of truth and thus, “the understanding”, begins to make its way into our consciousness. And it does so as an evolutionary, new “way of thought” finally embracing true four-dimensionality.

 

The engine of dualism, by definition, must be a two-fold affair with two fundamental forces (existence/resistance) producing the multiplicity we perceive. Conventional wisdom, however, insists that there are four. And there must be four fundamental degrees of freedom of motion, as Einstein, Minkowski and others have shown. Yet that same wisdom – in practice – insists there are only three because that is all that can be observed, imagined or even allowed by the gross restraints of finitism. Since vision reveals only three of these directions of motion, other sensory data than vision must come into play in order to fully SEE.

 

We see, we hear, we smell, taste; and touch the world, and what we always seem to forget, we weigh it! And all can be subsumed as ‘feel’. Yet the feel registers on the brain as vision, sound and so on. Light waves touch the eyes and the feeling is transformed and registered on the brain as vision. Said another way, vision is the primary mode of feeling light waves as sound is the primary mode of feeling audio waves. And weight is the primary mode of feeling gravitational potentials..

 

 

Self Reference: Truth is an End Game

 

Among my earliest childhood recollections was when I was thinking about the blatant impossibility of the existence I was perceiving. How could anything exist at all, much less me and the wondrous ability to see and think about it? But eventually, I now realize, I became dumbed-down by acquisition of the prevailing wisdom; conditioned in order to form a belief. One side told me it was all from the will of a sometimes jealous, sometimes demanding, sometimes benevolent, sometimes loving, all powerful God; while another side proclaimed it was all random, accidental and eventually just plain miraculous. Going through life trying to ally these two self-serving points of view, one forgets the original problem of impossibility; the utter bewildering comprehension of the wonder of it all.

 

Until, that is, I finally realized that both sides constitute a sort of counterfeit coin I call finitism, the world of gross limitations brought about by the process of ‘seeing’ existence and totally misrepresenting and thus, misinterpreting it and thus misunderstanding it.

 

Think about it: a skin-bag of electrons and protons studying the properties of electrons and protons using physical machines made of electrons and protons moving around in a rarified medium of electrons and protons; all to ‘prove’ something to other skin bags of electrons and protons. This sort of feed-back loop, called ‘self-reference’, can present a host of potential problems for everyone concerned, be they experimenter, interpreter, writer or reader; because “… we cannot escape the fact that the world we know is constructed in order (and thus in such a way as to be able) to see itself. This is indeed amazing. Not so much in view of what is sees, although this may appear fantastic enough, but in respect of the fact that it can see at all.”10

 

Those negative and positive electrical motivators we call electrons and protons are what every thing in our universe has in common, because every thing that is seen and every thing that sees is made of those two, and only two, fundamental entities. That’s your basic physical dualism; every ‘thing’ is self-referential: a question which contains its own answer for it refers to its self

 

We are God pouring God into God. We are one and the same, [even though] we can pretend that we are not. My inside is your inside, but my outside is apart from your outside. It’s crazy.11

 

Maturity (“earliness, timely”) is in the divergent stage of existence (Divergence becomes convergence becomes divergence…); the going away from truth in order to find it again, or, as Spencer-Brown so elegantly put it:

 

At a certain stage in the argument, we somehow cleverly obscured this knowledge [truth] from ourselves, in order that we might then navigate ourselves through a journey of rediscovery, consisting in a series of justifications and proofs with the purpose of again rendering, to ourselves, irrefutable evidence of what we already knew.

 

Deepak Chopra said:


A day will come when you realize that the entire universe can be found inside you, and then you will be a wizard. As a wizard you don’t live in the world, the world lives in you.
(Deepak Chopra, The Way of the Wizard, Harmony Books NY, 1995)

 

Relativity leads us to a similar end, as Alan McGlashan tells us:

 

Man, crushed and silenced by the immensity of the cosmos in one sense, in another sense may be capable of containing it. (Gravity and Levity)

 

The Question:

 

When you listen to another’s heartbeat…you are in truth eavesdropping, innocently enough, on the top secret of the physical universe. For the heart’s alternation of systole-diastole, expulsion-dilation, giving-receiving is the rhythm to which all creation dances…And if indeed the entire cosmos can be pictured as a gigantic beating heart, a question of ultimate audacity begins at once to rise above the minds horizon…WHOSE HEART? (Ibid)

 

The Answer ? :

 

...the process we have here ventured to contemplate will be renewed forever and ever; a novel universe swelling into existence, and then subsiding into nothingness at every throb of the heart divine. And now – this Heart Divine – what is it? IT IS OUR OWN!  (E. A. Poe, Eureka)



finis

 

 

Theory: “the etymological notion underlying theory is of ‘looking’; only secondarily did it develop via ‘contemplation’ to ‘mental conception’… theoros GK, ‘spectator’ theatre! (Dictionary of Word Origins, John Ayto)

** see Life's Word

 

Notes (Also see Bibliography)

1. From the novel, Brimstone, by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, pp 248, Warner Vision Books, NY)

2. J.G. Ballard Introduction to the French edition {1974} of Crash {1973} reprinted in Re/Search no. 8/9 {1984} from the internet.

3. Frank Thilly,  Pp 35, A History of Philosophy, 1914

4. Alfred Weber, History of Philosophy, 1896

5. Daniel W. Graham / Email: daniel_graham@byu.edu / Department of Philosophy, Brigham Young University / Provo, Utah 84602, emphasis in bold added

6. Henri Frankfort, Before Philosophy,  pp. 255-262

7. Sir Arthur Eddington, Space, Time and Gravitation

8. Eric J. Lerner, The Big Bang Never Happened, Pp 363

9. G. Spencer-Brown, Laws of Form

10. Ibid

11. Randolph Thompson Dible II, link)

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