The Riddle of Consciousness

by Iona Miller
Metaphysics, Philosophy or Physics?

Alchemy is a specific philosophical style of thinking about psyche and matter and a unique way of perceiving and interpreting the world. Perhaps some phenomena are better grasped from a subjective point of view. Philosophy of science is concerned with our assumptions, foundations and implications of relying on scientific method. It describes metaphysical, epistemological, and semantic aspects of science.

Areas that relate to alchemical thought include at least the philosophies of physics, biology, mathematics, chemistry, medicine and psychology. In alchemy, they are fused in a transdisciplinary approach. Reasoning, analysis, coherence and reductionism define objectivity. Realism compared with theory-dependent observations, instrumentalism, and the nature of scientific concepts and statements are issues.

Philosophy of physics studies matter and energy and how they interact. The main questions concern the nature of space and time, atoms and atomism. Other issues include the predictions of cosmology, the results of the interpretation of quantum mechanics, the foundations of statistical mechanics, causality, determinism, and the nature of physical laws.

Classically, most of these questions were studied as part of metaphysics, including causality, determinism, and space and time. Philosophy of biology deals with epistemological, metaphysical, genetic engineering and ethical issues in the biological and biomedical sciences. Other key ideas such as the reductionof all life processes to biochemical reactions as well as the incorporation of psychology into a broader neuroscience are also addressed.

A common sense question is “How do we know what we know and what is it like?” Psychological answers to this question lead to felt-sense of psychophysical perceptions described as subjective epistemological metaphors: “It’s like a rock on my chest,” “a stab in the back,” “an effervescence,” etc. It can be located in the whole or a part of the body/mind.

Thomas Nagel has emerged as a highly regarded Rationalist philosopher for his “what is it like?” approach to phenomenological experience. His philosophy of mind contends physics cannot describe our consciousness and subjective experience. He is a supporter of the real objectivity of science but values subjectivity when it comes to the human mind. Yes, the world exists independently of us, but the objective viewpoint is fundamentally unable to help us fully understand ourselves. He warns us against falsely-objectifying ourselves.

While it is importantly true the world exists independent of us, the rise of modern science has permanently changed how we think of the world and our place in it. A modern scientific understanding is one way of thinking about the world and our place in it that is more objective than the common sense view it replaces. Still, it reflects our style of thinking, the mathematicised understanding of the world represented by modern physics. Based in rationalthinking, it does not involve the specific nature of our perceptual sensibility.

Using only the scientific method on the mind leaves out something essential: what is it to be a thinker who conceives of the world from a particular perspective? e learn and use mental concepts by being directly acquainted with our own minds. So, being a thinker is to have a subjective perspective on the world. Abstracting away from this perspective leaves out what you sought to explain. Having a concept of a mental state requires being directly, experientially acquainted with it.
Though physical states correlate with mental states, there is always an explanatory gap between an identification of a state in mental and physical terms. Nagel is not a physicalist. Currently, our mental concepts of human physical mechanisms are not as scientific as chemistry, for example. But he envisions scientific breakthroughs in identifying an underlying essence that is neither physical, nor functional, nor mental, but includes all three of these ways the mind “appears” to us.

Lack of consensus is even more prevalent in consciousness studies than in physics and philosophy. It relates to our alchemical quest because in alchemy, consciousness is an inherent quality of matter. Models of consciousness, from Panpsychism, to Orchestrated OR, to neural nets are even more numerous than models of physical reality. [See Journal of Consciousness Studies, JCS] Almost every writer on the subject has their own pet theory. Ultimately, matter and consciousness are categories of mind.

Stuart Hameroff is a major proponent of ORCH OR, based on Penrose’s Objective Reduction. “Orch OR is a proposed form of quantum computation occurring in microtubules within brain neurons. Specifically, quantum computation relevant to consciousness occurs in microtubules in brain neuronal dendrites linked by gap junctions.

“The gap junction connections allow extension of quantum state zones between neurons and glia, as well as synchronization in the gamma synchrony range of the EEG, roughly 40 Hz. Gap junction openings and closings provide mobile spatiotemporal envelopes moving through the brain – the conscious pilot. In the absence of the pilot and gap junction connections (preventing extension of quantum states) the processing in the manifold (the neuronal/glial networks comprising the brain) are non-conscious auto-pilot functions.

“But the question here is the quantum computation itself which is proposed to terminate – halt – by Penrose objective reduction OR. At the moment of OR, non-algorithmic non-computability is introduced. Prior to OR, i.e. during the quantum computation, the process is algorithmic (according to the Schrodinger equation) and has time steps, i.e. is composed of discrete steps allowing algorithmic processing.

We have our self experience, and sometimes nondual egoless experiences such as those spoken of in eastern philosophies. Words may help us understand something. Experience allows us to know. We can probe the nature of existence by going within our own minds, beyond their contents to the root of being. Nevertheless, we have to be alert for self-deception, pseudo-interpretations, misattributions and lack of critical thinking.

The Riddle of Consciousness

We are all primarily interested in human consciousness. We search for a rational framework that is compatible with natural science. The current problem is that conventional neurobiology and experience do not match up. Perhaps, there is only one way to learn what consciousness is — by changing the focus of our own awareness and using our consciousness in as many ways as possible. In other words, by making experiments on ourselves.

In The Logic of Scientific Discovery Karl Popper explains his premise that no amount of positive experimental results can prove a scientific theory to be correct. But a single negative result can prove a theory utterly wrong. Science isn’t just a collection of established laws, but a system experimentally tests hypotheses. If a hypothesis survives numerous rigorous experiments, it gains plausibility — but it can never be definitively proven to be completely correct. Discomforting as that is, it has become the dominant scientific view.

Consciousness exists. Science has had a hard time focusing mind and awareness under its microscope. After decades of sciene, there is still no agreement on on the nature of consciousness or even what the word means. We are even unsure what is relevant. We are often inaccurate when formulating our assertions. Panpsychism, essentially the alchemical view, is a doctrine (belief) that everything material (including the atoms and the galaxies) has an element of individual consciousness. But, is it correct to equate the concept of psyche and the concept of consciousness?

Materialism insists, “How can matter be conscious if the world is made of physical matter?” Behaviorism and functionalism have their own proponents but they are hardly compatible with physics or neurology. If consciousness emerges from neural processes what is emergence and how is it possible?

An alternative is a universe made of matter/consciousness. How does consciousness arise from seemingly inanimate matter? The nondual approach says everything is mind and matter is its manifestation. Wallace concludes consciousness does not emerge from the brain but is conditioned by it. The entire Universe of mind and matter arises from a fundamental non-dual reality.

Explanatory Gap

Unorthodox philosophies and interpretations of anomalous experiences do not play well to current scientific authorities, because the current scientific method is itself programmed to perceive only information that fits its preconceived patterns. Still, several out-of-the-box theories have gained popular attention, whether they are “true” or not.

Any real theory of consciousness must be compatible with ALL relevant disciplines, possibly including phenomenology, neurology and cosmology. Varela suggests a neurophenomenologyapproach, inspired by the style of inquiry of phenomenology, like the postmodern Jungians. It seeks articulations by mutual constraints between phenomena present in experience and the correlative field of phenomena established by the cognitive sciences.

Many disciplines are not compatible with Physics, because the latter uses its own specific (reductionistic) methods of study. Some armchair theoreticians do not realize the actual complexity of the problem of compatibility of the intellectual products of different levels and kinds. None can explain the quantum leap from neurobiology to awareness.

There are simple therapeutic, life-changing models people can use to transform themselves, their attitudes, their pro-active response, confidence and self-esteem, even if they do not operate by the espoused principles of quantum mysticism. Often these techniques are lifted from perennial wisdom and fused with some ‘gee-whiz’ science. Thus, we have fads such as “What the Bleep,” “The Law of Attraction,” “Distance Healing,” and a limitless host of quick-fix psychosocial remedies.

Because our intellects are flexible and spontaneous, we can handle more than one worldview (orthodox and heterodox), based in different asusmptions, imagining how our experience is the same and different in each. We don’t have to ‘believe’ in them to the point of identification or zealotry to consider their merits and shortcomings. Sometimes even primitive techniques have the potential to influence our unconscious mind. Even a scientist’s intellect is able to handle other kinds of information.

We are not limited to being either materialistic or theistic. The intellect can handle more than one approach operating with separate assumptions. But the intellect loves to find order. If two or more simultaneous views compete with one another, they will either be compartmentalized as in a “religious scientist,” or the cognitive dissonance will drive the belief holder in one direction or another, seeking dissonance resolution or to find a transcendent perspective that is a quantum leap from the (mutually exclusive) outgrown views.

Panpsychism appeared as a result of scientification (putting into a scientific form) of ancient (shamanic) animistic beliefs, based on a misunderstanding of the very essence of the animistic belief system, in which a stone,a tree, or a wind were treated animated ONLY when they were addressed in prayers or in other forms of human-nature communication.

In other words, without the prayer (the human) there could be no psyche-possessing stones/trees/ winds/etc. At the same time, panpsychism attributes consciousness to everything material even in the absence of the subject of conscious activity. Perhaps it is better to describe inanimate objects as ‘bathing in sentience’ than potentially conscious, per se. Natural science provides no basis for attributing experience to ‘animate’ rather than ‘inanimate’ things. A panexistential view would be that everything has an element of individual consciousness. And this is what the alchemists called its Mercurial spirit. It has nothing to do with action or intelligence or dynamics — only experience.

The deanimation of nature was a magic trick of the Enlightenment era, but the mechanistic view is fundamentally flawed. Critics will probably say there is no need for panpsychism to be considered as a grounding of consciousness preceding speciesness. To adopt such a position is indicative of a lack in precision in analysis of research, favoring a ‘god factor’ where there is no need for such and no evidence of such. Panpsychism is grounded in religion and as such fantasy and reflective of primitive mindsets of the past being exploited to try and maintain such mindsets in the present.

But, we can approach alchemy in spirit of spiritual alchemy, which like psychological alchemy takes an imaginal, rather that realist or literalistic point of view on the pursuit of this science-art. We understand its mythopoetic nature and its property of being an artistic medium for self-expression, soul making and deepening meaning. A less reductive approach to panpsychism reveals its role in the history of philosophy as counterpoint to the mechanistic view. It remains an influential subcurrent in any examination of the enigma of mind.

Mind is a general phenomenon of nature (Skrbina). Panpsychism is a meta-theory accomodating many theiries of mind. It simply holds that, no matter how one conceives of mind, such mind applies to all things. In addition, panpsychism is one of the most ancient and enduring concepts of philosophy, beginning with its pre-historical forms, animism and polytheism. Its adherents in the West have included important thinkers from the very beginning of Greek philosophy through the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries to the present. Many modern researchers find it a credible, generative option.

Paninformationism, as a general approach to dynamics is modern physics and does not need another name. Panpsychism addresses a different set of questions, which everyday physics has not: “Why is this like this to that.” Within panpsychism there are naturally many positions addressing distinctions between the consciousness of rocks and living things. It presentsa radical challenge to the modern worldview, based on a mechanistic cosmos of dead, insensate matter.

First, it is incorrect to compare a theory and a discipline. A discipline may contain many theories (which use the same method of study), while a theory contains no disciplines. Some disciplines are not compatible with physics. We may investigate for compatibility only the intellectual products of the same kind: two theories, or two disciplines, or two hypotheses, etc. There is complexity in the problem of compatibility of the intellectual products of different levels and kinds.

We don’t know the first thing about consciousness, except that we seem to have it. That doesn’t stop many from offering their partial solutions and branded technologies, beyond those of conventional religion and alternative spirituality. But how does it differ from self-awareness? What does it mean to be reflexively self-conscious? Where is the location and what is the pattern of consciousness?

Are there degrees of complexity of consciousness? Is it limited to the brain or the whole psychophysical organism? Some say not. Is consciousness a given with all matter or an epiphenomenon of the brain? Is it electromagnetically imprinted? Does it reside at the center of all our energy fields? Is it a mind, memory energy field? Is it holographic?

Mediation Dynamics

What is the potential of awareness? Are we entangled with all minds? Is there a collective unconscious? What is the focus of consciousness, attentive awareness and role of intention? How does it relate to the information of perception and objects of perception? What is objective and what is subjective? What are the roles of learning, habits, and phenomenology, the distinctions of perception and reality, positive and negative feedback? Is consciousness always unchangeably subjective, while information and the energy fields that carry it are always unchangeably objective?

Some say that panpsychism indicates a lack in precision in analysis of research and favors a ‘god factor’ where there is no need for such and no evidence of such. Panpsychism is grounded in religion and as such fantasy and reflective of primitive mindsets of the past being exploited to try and maintain such mindsets in the present.

Do fields or information play a role in consciousness? Is free-will a perception or reality since research shows we make most of our decisions before conscious awareness is involved? Can we direct the beam of consciousness? How do brainwaves and sensory deprivation modulate our mental states? We simply don’t know much, beyond the flexibilities of stimulus-response, despite centuries of meditation science, psychology and the modern discoveries of neurology and technology.

Usually the realm of neuroscientists, few physicists have attempted any comprehensive theory of consciousness. Nick Herbert boldly does so in Elemental Mind. He suggests a third alternative to emergentist and cybernetic models. Herbert’s third hypothesis suggests that – far from being a rare occurrence in complex biological or computational systems – mind is a fundamental process in its own right, as widespread and deeply embedded in nature as light or electricity.

“Elemental Mind” surveys what we know about the mind’s outer dwelling place and certain tentative maps we have made of our own inner experiences. He develops criteria for a true science of mind and shows how important such a science will be not only for science but for philosophy and religion. He develops descriptions of tentative pioneer proposals concerning possible ways consciousness might manifest as an elementary force in nature.

Two approaches are particularly stressed: those that stem from Einstein’s special relativity theory – such as the notions of Jean Charon and of James Culbertson – and those based on extensions of quantum theory–such as the ideas of John von Neuman, Sir John Eccles and Henry Stapp. An entire chapter is devoted to Culbertson’s little – known spacetime reductive materialism (SRM) hypothesis.

Three features of quantum theory are especially suggestive for understanding how mind might enter matter at the quantum level. Coincidentally, these three features – randomness, thinglessness, and interconnectedness – were precisely the features that Albert Einstein, one of quantum theory’s founding fathers, found so bizarre that he could not accept them.

These three Einstein – abhorred features, however, have continued to play an increasingly important role in quantum thinking; quantum connectedness in particular has been securely confirmed by recent experiments motivated by the famous theorem of Irish physicist John Bell. “Elemental Mind” makes a plausible case from biological, psychological, and parapsychological evidence that these three features of supposedly inert matter are the external signs of three basic features of mind: free will, essential ambiguity, and deep psychic connectedness.

“The passage of a quantum system from the thingless world of vibratory quantum possibilities into the ordinary world of fixed actualities takes place in two stages, which we might call “reality construction of the first and second kinds”. Reality construction of the first kind consists of the choice of a measurement context. This choice, under the control of the observer, cause the formerly seamless quantum wave world to split into a family of definite possibilities.Reality creation of the second kind (also called “collapse of the wave function” or “quantum jump”) occurs when one of these possibilities becomes an actual fact.”

“One of the major mistakes of the medieval philosophers was their underestimation of the size of the physical world. This cozy earth, the seven celestial spheres, plus Dante’s concentric circles of Hell: that was the full extent of the universe in the medieval imagination. No one at that time even dreamed of other solar systems, let alone galaxies like dust clouds in a vast room billions of light-years in diameter.

Herbert believes that modern mind scientists are making this same medieval mistake by vastly underestimating the quantity of consciousness in the universe. If mind is a fundamental force in nature, we might someday realize that the quality and quantity of sentient life inhabiting just this room may exceed the physical splendor of the entire universe of matter.

Consciousness Debate

Alchemy is a panpsychic philosophy. Panpsychism is the doctrine that mind is a fundamental feature of the world which exists throughout the universe. Panpsychism, in philosophy, is either the view that all parts of matter involve mind, or the more holistic view that the universe is an organism that possesses a mind. It is stronger than animism, which holds only that all things are alive.

Panpsychism doesn’t believe that all matter is alive or even conscious but rather that the constituent parts of matter are composed of some form of mind and are sentient. This is alchemy’s spirit hidden in matter — the elusive Mercurius. Alchemy cannot rely on mathematical backing for reliability, but it carries the authority of psychic reality:

“The old way of picturing energy lived on in the alchemistic tradition in the idea of Mercurius as a “hidden fire” or fiery life-breath or a kind of life-spirit inherent in all things…This fire-spirit imagines everything in nature; he is a creation spirit who contains in himself “the image of all creatures.” In the alchemical opus he must be liberated from his imprisonment in matter and then he begins to rotate in himself, vortex-fashion; at the same time he reveals himself as an immortal componenet of the alchemist’s psyche. By way of the different stages of the so-called phlogiston theory this archetypal image gradually developed into the energy concept of modern physics. There is therefore no concept fundamental to modern physics that is not in one degree or another a differentiated form of some primordial archetypal idea.” (M. L. von Franz, Projection and Recollection in Jungian Psychology)

We must realize there is only a probability of our ideas being right, but the quest lies in pursuing them passionately. We can frame our approach from the sense of excitement that we are taking part in mankind’s great experiment, which is ancient in terms of philosophy but recent in terms of deep time.

“Psyche is understood holistically to include both conscious and unconscious experience. Process philosophers make this clear by referring to panexperientialism, which does indeed accept that experience occurs “all the way down” in reality (and presumably “all the way up”, too). However, experience that becomes conscious of itself, i.e., conscious experience, is accepted as an emergence — in the way predicted by dynamical systems theory (without a total category shift) as a “phase-shift” or more explicitly as the reflexive or recursive experience that makes one’s experiential field an “object” of awareness (experience of experience).

experience or awareness just emerged from non-aware, non-experiencing matter-energy stuff, that would be a total category shift and thus a sort of miracle or at least magical thinking, unacceptable to the rational mind. The emergence into conscious experience, however, is not a miracle (so it was probably experienced as such). It is likely the result move into the symbolic condition of human culture, thus allowing for our experienced reality to be divided into the subjective and the objective worlds. Previous to this split, experience can be understood as the result of the relational dynamic and not as something occurring privately within a subjective entity.

Thus experience in itself may precede the experiencing subject. Unconscious experience = experience w/o a subject of experience, and there is no reason why this could not be manifesting itself all the time in all the way down, say, in the dynamic relations amongst subatomic particles, at least momentarily. Of course, this leaves open the possibility that there may be vastly expanded systems of experience much larger, broader, or deeper than our own particular version of symbolically- enabled human conscious experience (or, perhaps, that there is a cosmic background of awareness-without- an-object-of-awareness incomprehensible to us).

Unconscious experience is still experience, sensations felt, intentions meeting intentions based in blind intuition or instinct, learning accumulating glacially, or, rather, evolutionarily, and manifesting itself in the forms reality takes. The unconscious is our ever-present vital source and contains far more than a single human consciousness could ever encompass since it is both within us and all around us. (Greg Nixon)

“Consciousness is a much smaller part of our mental life than we are conscious of, because we cannot be conscious of what we are not conscious of. How simple that is to say; how difficult to appreciate! It is like asking a flashlight in a dark room to search around for something that does not have any light shining up on it. The flashlight, since there is light in whatever direction it turns, would have to conclude that there is light everywhere. And so consciousness can seem to pervade all mentality when actually it does not.” (Julian Jaynes)

“Consciousness flickers; and even at its brightest, there is a small focal region of clear illumination, and a large penumbral region of experience which tells of intense experience in dim apprehension. The simplicity of clear consciousness is no measure of the complexity of complete experience. Also this character of our experience suggests that consciousness is the crown of experience, only occasionally attained, not its necessary base.” (Alfred North Whitehead).

“It has become generally accepted that a large, perhaps even a major part of our mental activities can take place without our being consciously aware of them. Though apparently unconscious, they are nevertheless part of significant mental experience since there is evidence that such activities can participate in later mental and behavioral manifestations — cognitive, affective, or conative.” (Benjamin Libet)

“Basically, the idea is that there is something – which it pleases some but not others to call ‘experience’ – related to receiving, processing and responding in certain ways to information about reality that is primordially non-conscious in the sense that the organism does not experience that it is so experiencing.” (Anthony Sebastian)”

Dynamic entities associated with human consciousness can be modelled as energy-bearing dynamic modes with biologically relevant spatial boundaries and time spans. Actualities remain primary, but defining their dynamics is often elusive.

Conventional quantum physics doesn’t deal with consciousness. Heterodox theories often include it. But the great enigmas of our existence remain the riddle of matter, the origin of the universe, the origin of life, and the human mind or consciousness. Yet, the orthodox view remains dominant because it is so useful.

Accepted cosmology is based on the unique case of electrically neutral bodies embedded in neutral interstellar gas and dust. It is derived from the very special physics that applies only in laboratories at the Earth’s surface. It relies on the incredibly weak force of gravity to create, shape and drive stars and galaxies. It needs unseen “dark matter” to shape galaxies. It requires that stars are isolated bodies powered by an internal nuclear engine.

Orthodox cosmology assumes that the observed interstellar magnetic fields are magically divorced from the electric currents that MUST create them. Complex, filamentary structures are seen at every scale and attributed to colliding gas. But colliding gases heat up and disperse. Yet this is given as the model for how stars are formed. Because gravity is infinitely weak, theorists have had to conjure up an infinitely heavy object – the Black Hole – to save appearances. Cosmology has become the realm of the mathematician alone and inevitably lost touch with reality.

Quantum Mysticism

VEDIC PHYSICS: Ancient Vedic physics claims reality is rooted in irreducible non-material primordial consciousness. In this theory, consciousness is the primary reality of the universe. It is all that exists and matter is illusory. There are many alternative theories of superfluidic consciousness and subtle matter. They attempt to explain pre-space, information and experiential anomalies, such as synchronicity, nonlocal mind and paranormal phenomena.

Perhaps the unified field of consciousness is all we ever experience. Imminent consciousness is the sacred quality of matter — pure being, the sacred root. Lazslo compares the vacuum with the Akashic field. The unified field of cosmic consciousness is the philosophical void, actually a plenum. Further, the vacuum has a memory, making transcendent consciousness akin to “immortality.”

If our own memories reside in a system of hologram-like solitons which reside in a medium of loosely coupled subquantum particles we are back to the Vedic theory of Akasha or Jung’s collective unconscious. To access this information we need to tune our consciousness to resonate with the holograms in the vacuum field.

There are contemporary models of consciousness/matter with and without chaos that are rooted in the vacuum. Some energetic descriptions of consciousness are more worthy of our alchemical attention than others, though each contribute another facet, another point of view. The view is that consciousness in its various forms is inherent in the process of the organization of matter and energy.

SELF-AWARE UNIVERSE: Amit Goswami, PhD proposes consciousness as the fundamental reality of the material world, based in the philosophy of monistic idealism. He claims it is a consistent, paradox-free interpretation of quantum mechanics that accounts for nonlocal psychic phenomena, such as self-consciousness, free will, creativity and ESP. There is one webwork of existence, a dance of creation and annihilation, with intentionality. But Goswami does not propose consciousness is mind; they are different concepts.

In monistic idealism, the consciousness of the subject in a subject-object experience is the same consciousness that is the ground of all being. Therefore, consciousness is unitive. The domain of potentia also exists in consciousness. Nothing is outside consciousness.

Buddha tells us that, “There is an Unborn, Unoriginated, Uncreated, Unformed. If there were not this Unborn, this Unoriginated, this Uncreated, this Unformed, escape from the world of the born, the originated, the created, the formed would not be possible.” But there is this essential ground, and it is possible to “escape” spacetime, according to Buddha.

If the brain-mind is itself an object in a nonlocal consciousness that encompasses all reality, then what we call objective empirical reality is within this consciousness. The one becomes many through self-reference, fragmentation into tangled hierarchies of self-iterating information.

The trick is to distinguish between consciousness and awareness. In processes of which we are aware classical models prevail. When we consciously see, consciousness collapses the quantum state of the brain-mind. Unconscious processing does not effect collapse of the quantum wave-function, pinning down quantum entities to one reality. Thus, unconscious processing permits the expression of nonlocal phenomena.

The situation in the brain-mind, with consciousness collapsing the wave function may only happen when awareness is present. There is a tangled hierarchy within the immanent self-reference of a system observing itself. An operation by a self-referential system is where the von Neumann chain stops.

According to the idealist interpretation, coherent superpositions exist in a transcendent domain as formless archetypes of matter. Suppose that the parallel universes of the many-worlds theory are not material but archetypal in content–universes of the mind. Then, each observation makes a causal pathway in the fabric of possibilities in the transcendent domain of reality. Once the choice is made, all except one of the pathways are excluded from the world of manifestation.

Goswami proposes that, “the universe exists as formless potentia in myriad possible branches in the transcendent domain and becomes manifest only when observed by conscious beings.” These self-referential observations plot the universe’s causal history, rejecting the myriad parallel alternatives that never manifest.

The universe bifurcates in every event in the transcendent domain, becoming many branches, until in one of the branches there is a sentient being that can look with awareness and complete a quantum measurement, according to Goswami. The causal pathway leading to that sentient being collapses into space-time reality.

Meaning arises in the universe when sentient beings observe it, choosing causal pathways from among the myriad transcendent possibilities. This anthropocentric view is also reflected in cosmology as the Anthropic Principle, where the cosmos is created for our sake. Amazingly, this is apparently compatible with quantum physics.

The self of our self-reference is due to a tangled hierarchy, but our consciousness is the consciousness of the Being that is beyond the subject-object split. There is no other source of consciousness in the universe. The self of self-reference and the consciousness of the original consciousness, together, make what we call self-consciousness.

Goswami, Amit and Richard E. Reed, Maggie Goswami; THE SELF-AWARE UNIVERSE: HOW CONSCIOUSNESS CREATES THE MATERIAL WORLD; Jeremy Tarcher/Putnam Books, New York, 1993.

IMPLICATE ORDER: One of the most popular theories is David Bohm’s holographic Implicate Order, which annihilates the notion of empty space. Bohm showed space is as real as the matter that moves through it. Space and Matter are interconnected. Calculations of zero-point energy suggest space is full rather than empty.

Plasma & Vortex Theories

“…at the conclusion of the alchemical work, there arises a rotating, eternal structure, the ‘one nature’…the prima materia is in Komarios’ view, a rotating heavenly order come down into matter ‘which God not man, has transferred there.’ ” The Opus follows a cyclic course. It wanders through the four elements until they come together in a pearl, merging in the center between opposites. Then nature conquers nature and is completed and becomes vortex-shaped (Zosimos’ idea). This whirlwind in matter moves analogously to the course of the stars in the firmamant, but it also represents the mystery of the soul and is a substance described as a murderous poison and revivifying pharmakon. It is thus an all-ermeating world-spirit which gathers the cosmos and its contents into unity. When the alchemist’s soul unites with the divine spirit there is a genuine transformation via meditation.” (M.L. von Franz, Number and Time)

Wal Thornhill’s ELECTRIC UNIVERSE is plasma-based. Since plasma comprises almost all the universe it is another candidate for the mysterious IT which comprises the “Mind that is the Universe.” Plasma belongs right in there with photons, gravity, and the vacuum potential.

Plasma is an emergent (i.e., higher-level or statistical-level) orderliness of complex electrical forces: such properties as filamentation, long-range attraction and short-range repulsion, braiding, characteristic velocities, formation and decay of plasmoids, and identity of properties at different scales. The Electric Universe cosmology is based on the behavior of electrically charged bodies embedded in a charged plasma. Plasma is a gas in which electrons have been removed from some of the atoms – in other words, it is ionised. Plasma is an excellent electrical conductor. 99.999% of matter in the universe is composed of plasma. A charged plasma has a small excess of negative or positive charge. Plasma naturally forms filaments in response to electric and magnetic fields. Those filaments may “pinch” magnetically to form stars. Stars are not isolated but receive electrical power from the galaxy – hence the million degree solar corona. Electromagnetic forces are infinitely more powerful than gravity and capable of simply explaining phenomena attributed to Black Holes. Electromagnetic forces can repel or attract. Gravity only attracts – requiring amazing legerdemain to explain colossal outpourings of matter from centres of galaxies. Plasma cosmology is the practical realm of electrical engineers. It is verifiable by experiment because of the enormous scalability of the phenomena.…lasma.htm

TWISTOR SPACE: Roger Penrose describes a theory of twistor space, which maps the geometric objects of the four dimensional space-time (Minkowski Space) into the geometric objects in the 4-dimensional complex space with the metric signature. The coordinates in such a space are called “twistors,” useful for geometrically modeling emergent theories of quantum gravity. This approach is natural for solving the equations of motion of massless fields of arbitrary spins.

Twistors are vortex-shaped forms. A vortex is the only way in which a fluid may move through itself. Physics regards mathematical forms, (not “things”), as the smallest building blocks of matter. Twistor modelling relates the nature of matter to space. Twistors are 20 orders of magnitude smaller than a nuclear particle. They are mathematical concepts which are massless.

The Torus model of the Universe, proposed by Arthur Young, could provide a macrocosmic paradigm for experiencing higher mystical states. A twistor is the smallest discovered form of a torus. A torus is a donut-shaped form plus its surrounding fields. Each twistor is shaped like a donut or piece of rope. It twists just once as it circles a central axis. The less energy it has, the greater its size. It travels at the speed of light in the direction of its axis.

Twistor theory uses complex numbers for expression. Complex numbers are composed of real and imaginary parts. The behavior of one part is influenced by the other part and vice versa. If the two separate types of numbers are to be properly combined to make complex numbers, they must be interwoven like the warp and woof of finished cloth.

Once this bolt of complex number “cloth” is woven, it can be “crumpled” but the interwoven nature of the real and imaginary parts prevent the possibility of tangled snarls. This loom analogy describes the orderly quality of the cmplex number and the logical manner in which it behaves. The addition of the imaginary part to the real number brings the real number out of the realm of potential and into the real world of manifestation.

Twistor theory goes beyond the use of the orderly, complex numbers to describe the universe. Twistor theory attempts to take into account empty space. A long-term aim of twistor theory is to eliminate the physical theory of a continuum, or “smooth” empty space. It is not empty; it is the Void.

A twistor space universe is described by four complex numbers, giving a total of eight parts to describe this view of reality. These include the 3 dimensions of position in space, two angular directions of motion through space-time, and the energy, spin, and polarization of that motion. In this view, the fundamental building blocks of this universe are twistors. Not particles, twistors lie between the concepts of particle and point. Mathematically, a twistor is closer to being the square root of a particle. Yet, theoretically, it is more analogous to the concept of the undivided point.

Real number behavior is controlled by the hidden complex structure of twistor space. Not only can particles be constructed out of twistors, but even the points in space-time themselves. A point in space-time is generated by the collection of twistors representing all possible light paths through that space-time point. What is intriguing about the 8-dimensional twistor space is that, by the orderly nature of complex numbers, only one kind of space-time is permitted to exist. That is the four-dimensional space-time of our perceived world.

RESONANCE PROJECT: The Haramein-Rauscher metric is a new solution to Einstein’s Field Equations that incorporates torque and Coriolis effects. The bottom line of Haramein’s Resonance Project is that all particles have a mini-black hole at their core. This approach appears to fit well with the spinor approach in the Dirac formalism in the quantum domain, that is, that the Lorentz conditions applied by Einstein in relativity may be the origin of the spinor and, hence, be the fundamental theory that yields the spinor formalism and the role of spin in physical phenomena.

The dual torus topology occupies a central role in the spinor, twistor and quaternionic formulation. This topology appears to be ubiquitous in astrophysical and cosmological phenomena and is predicted by the U4 bubble of the affine connection in the Haramein-Rauscher solution to Einstein’s field equations. The geometric structure of the complexified Minkowski space is associated with the twistor algebra, spinor calculus, and the SUn groups of the quaternionic formalism. Hence quantum theory and relativity are related mathematically through the dual torus topology.

They examine the gravitic and electromagnetic collective coherent structures of plasma and their interactions with the vacuum. A balance equation between extremely collapsing gravitational systems and their surrounding energetic plasma media is proposed. The dynamics of the plasma media, the structure of the vacuum, and the coupling of electromagnetic and gravitational forces with the inclusion of torque and Coriolis phenomena is described by the Haramein-Rauscher solution to Einstein’s field equations.

The exotic nature of complex black holes involves not only the black hole itself but the surrounding plasma media. The main forces involved are intense gravitational collapsing forces, powerful electromagnetic fields, charge, and spin angular momentum. We find soliton or magneto-acoustic plasma solutions to the relativistic Vlasov equations solved in the vicinity of black hole ergospheres. Collective phonon or plasmon states of plasma fields are given. We utilize the Hamiltonian formalism to describe the collective states of matter and the dynamic processes within plasma allowing us to deduce a possible polarized vacuum structure and a unified physics.


~ by ionamiller on June 7, 2009.

2 Responses to “The Riddle of Consciousness”

  1. No, Gravity is more powerful than all other forces inculding electromagnetic force. All forces are modifications of gravity. For example, see the birth of a star. Stars are formed by the action of gravity only. Light is produced afterwards. Son may be stronger than father but father is father. There is no doubt. Consciousness and gravity have identical attributes.

  2. Gravitation Force is the Ultimate Creator, this paper I presented at the 1st Int. Conf. on Revival of Traditional Yoga, held at The Lonavla Yoga Institute (India), Lonavla, Pune in 2006. The Abstract of this paper is given below:

    The Universe includes everything that exists. In the Universe there are billions and billions of stars. These stars are distributed in the space in huge clusters. They are held together by gravitation and are known as galaxies. Sun is also a star. Various members of the solar system are bound to it by gravitation force. Gravitation force is the ultimate cause of birth and death of galaxy, star and planets etc. Gravitation can be considered as the cause of various forms of animate and inanimate existence. Human form is superior to all other forms. Withdrawal of gravitational wave from some plane of action is called the death of that form. It can be assumed that gravitation force is ultimate creator. Source of it is ‘God’. Gravitational Field is the supreme soul (consciousness) and its innumerable points of action may be called as individual soul (consciousness). It acts through body and mind. Body is physical entity. Mind can be defined as the function of autonomic nervous system. Electromagnetic waves are its agents through which it works. This can be realized through the practice of meditation and yoga under qualified meditation instruction. This can remove misunderstanding between science and religion and amongst various religions. This is the gist of all religious teachings – past, present and future.


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