Skip to comments.ON A RESONANCE THEORY OF THOUGHT AND SPIRITUALITY
Posted on 08/02/2003 4:43:59 PM PDT by betty boop
The following theory is proposed to explain the observed phenomena of thought and spiritual/mystical experience/creativity:
(a) Thought is the subtlest emergent entity from the human brain. As of now, though it is taken to arise from complex biochemical (neuronal) processes in the brain, we have no means of detecting any physical aspect of thought.
(b) All sensory experiences (light, sound, smell, taste, sound) result from an interaction between an external agent (photon, phonon, etc.) and some aspect of the brain.
(a) It is proposed that, like the electromagnetic field, there is an extremely subtle substratum pervading the universe which may be called the universal thought field (UTF). This may even be trans-physical, i.e., something that cannot be detected by ordinary physical instruments. Or it may be physical and has not yet been detected as such.
(b) Every thought generated in the brain creates its own particular thought field (PTF).
Theory based on the above hypotheses:
(a) Just as EM waves require the complex structure of the brain to be transduced into the experience of light and color, the UTF requires the complex system of the human brain to create local thoughts. In other words, when the UTF interacts with certain regions of the brain, thoughts arise as by-products.
(b) Interactions between PTFs and brains generate other PTFs. Indeed every thought is a different reaction-result to either the UTF or to a PTF.
(c) There is an important difference between UTF and PTF. UTF does not require a material medium for acting upon a brain. But a PTF cannot be transmitted from one brain to another without a material medium, such as sound, writing, signs, etc.
(d) In some instances, as with molecular resonance, certain brains are able to resonate with the UTF in various universal modes. Such resonances constitute revelations, magnificent epic poetry, great musical compositions, discovery of a mathematical theorem in a dream, and the like, as also mystic experiences.
(e) This perspective suggests that there can be no thought without a complex brain (well known fact); and more importantly, that there exists a pure thought field (UTF) in the universe at large which may be responsible for the physical universe to be functioning in accordance with mathematically precise laws.
The following parallels with other physical facts come to mind:
(a) Phosphorescence & luminescence: When radiation of shorter wavelengths falls on certain substances, the substances emit visible light immediately or after some time. Likewise when the UTF falls on a complex cerebral system, it emits thoughts of one kind or another.
(b) One of the subtlest entities in the physical universe is the neutrino, which does not interact with ordinary matter through gravitation, strong, or electromagnetic interaction. Being involved only in the weak interaction, it is extremely difficult to detect it. The UTF is subtler by far than the neutrino, and may therefore (if it be purely physical) it may be far more difficult to detect.
Humans are spiritual. Micrsoft Windows is not a floppy disk.
An Interview with Rupert Sheldrake from the Seattle Post Intelligencer 1st April 2003
Because of Thomas.
A second timelike dimension would have to be folded up to very small size like the other extra dimensions. If the second timelike dimension were similar to the first in size, just orthogonal, it would make too many things possible. If all things are possible, then evolution is dead and change is impossible, so there is a phenomenological contradiction. OTOH it would eliminate the need for the Big Bang.
Indeed, the compactification of extra spatial dimensions is an artificial construct.
For instance, under ekpyrotic cosmology, the inception dimensions are deemed parallel and thus, there is no big bang.
Likewise, in 5 dimension space/time such compactification is not necessary:
If our time dimension is a plane and not a line, the past, present and future are all seen at once and the cause/effect can be inverted to effect/cause.
Therefore, IMHO the artificial aversion of science is a prejudice which may stand between us and truth.
IMHO, they will find the answer to the quantum riddle in geometry. And that answer will come not from quantum mechanics but astrophysics - cosmology and astronomy!
Your article is going to be about consciousness; Prof. Raman's article mainly addresses "thoughts," (whatever he means by thoughts). There is a great difference between, "thoughts," and consciousness. Our thinking is certainly conscious, but my kitty is conscious, but doesn't think. I assume you will be careful to make this distinction which Prof. Raman does not.
If you would be so kind, you might tell us what you mean by consciousness. I'm not asking you for an explanation of how it works, only what you mean by that term. Does the word "qualia" fit your notion of what the content of consciousness is?
Don't misunderstand, I don't want to be a stick in the mud, but if it can't be quantized, it isn't very useful as far as science goes.
For example, if this UTF has a field nature, it should also have a particle nature too, which is used to transmit the effect. For it to be a useful theory, it needs to answer questions like: What is the particle's mass, what is the range of this new force, what is the speed of propagation, and so on and so forth.
I think you need to be a little careful with your terms. Matter/non-matter interaction is an everyday thing, I think that what you and many other people might mean is natural/supernatural interaction. That is a completely different question.
You can construct a spirituality out of auras and supernatural beings. Of you can call them fields and detached consciousnesses. It's important not to confuse the use of physical nomenclature with physics.
Energy is non-matter. Matter/energy interaction is not a mystery.
Now if you want an example of something using something that is not-matter, then I propose that all examples of Microsoft Windows be destroyed except for one compressed, encoded file. That one encoded file is beamed, using any frequency you wish and compatible with transmission, at any remote galaxy. Upon completion of the transmission the remaining file is erased along with the decoding key. Does Microsoft windows exist?
That's news to me. I could have sworn matter and energy are interchangable and that there was a famous formula defining the equivalence.
Now about the little windows thought experiment. Does a text exist if the only copy of it resides in the form of an unbreakable cipher, for which the key is lost? I would argue that this is equivalent asking if a flammable object exists after it is burned. If an object cannot be reassembled, it does not exist, at least not in any usual sense. If the hypothetical message can be decrypted, then it exists.
If you wish to play word games leave me out.
What Grandpierre suggests, however, is that consciousness is a far more generalized and pervasive phenomena that all "living systems" possess, even quite "humble" ones, such as an amoeba. Here's an interesting selection from Slavoj Hontela that elaborates this idea:
"Let us to observe the behavior of an Amoeba in the microscopes visual field. We can see there an Amoeba, of Proteus species, slowly moving by stretching out its pseudopodia, looking probably for food. We place now with a glass pipette close to her few powdered pigments of a dried Chinese Ink. The amoeba stretches one of her pseudopodia to a pigment grain closest to her (evidence of a chemotaxic reaction or ability !) and involves the grain into her pushing it down to the nucleus where the digestive vacuoles are present. It is certainly interesting that the pigment transported through the pseudopodia towards the nucleus, doesn't yet touch the nucleus capsule when obviously the Amoeba recognized the undigestibility of the Chinese Ink pigment, the further transportation in the direction to the nucleus stops and the foreign body is quickly pushed back and finally eliminated from the Amoeba's body.
"From this observation it is possible to make already several conclusions:
"1) The amoeba was able to recognize and approach the foreign body which might be its potential food,
"2) A. was able to mobilize her pseudopodia giving them the appropriate message to approach this pigment and engulf it.
"3) With a certain delay which was obviously necessary to process the information related to the characteristic of the foreign body and the realization that it is indigestible follows another set of messages and the pigment was eliminated.
"We have to presume there were neuro-biological elements equivalent to those of more developed organisms and obviously there were present a appropriate number of genes ....
"The second phase of the observation experiment was even more interesting because it brought to the evidence the proof of the presence of memory. We have removed the pigment from the underlying microscopic glass dip, we put there a new drop of clear water and again placed there another pigment grain of Chinese Ink. The Amoeba stretched the pseudopodium to the closest pigment but did not touch it and, in contrary pulled back from the pigment grain. Obviously it preserved the memory for the identification of the indigestible pigment!
"It would be an exaggeration to speak about the mind or thinking but the period of might be 30 seconds which were passed by between the pigment taking and eliminating it; evokes the impression that the Amoeba needed a certain time to process the obtained information, i.e., it was 'thinking.'"
Grandpierre's definition of "perception" is probably the most generalized WRT the meaning of consciousness in its unversal sense:
"Perception is an interaction in which a stimulus enters into the perceiver, which transforms it by its own (biopsychological) laws, selects the information by its own interpretation, and reacts to the selected, developing an answer...."
Qualia is a very useful precept; but it seems to have a somewhat limited application (i.e., referring preeminently to human subjective states).