Archive for December, 2012

“Why Did He Do It? White Man.” It Is Only Now That His Own Demise Is at Hand That Rational Man Stops to Reflect — The Primal Return

“Most Men They Don’t Need It. White Man He Kills for It.” Primitive Philosophy, Part Two: Away from Manifest Destiny, The Primal Renaissance

Manifest Destiny

Glorifying himself with the regalia of “Reason,” Western Man ascended the throne in the castle of Nature and deigned to cast his eyes below him on all the rest of living things, nay, on the rest of all of Creation.

From such imperial heights Western man deduced the workings of the Universe — utilizing his purportedly powerful tool of Reason — and conceived how he should apportion and determine all that he surveyed. For surely his perception and apprehension of a thing was akin to possession . . . he reasoned conveniently.

Thus adorned and fortified, Rational Man went about subduing all that came before his view. Letting nothing as trivial as philosophies, traditions, cultures, and the peoples who embodied them stand in his way.

Nor even, in this century, has “Rational” Man allowed the complete elimination, for all of eternity, of millions of species of living things, evolving out of the mists of billions of years, obstruct him in the least from the attainment of desires, regardless how trivial. Thus he “succeeded” to such an extent that he threatens now even his own existence.

“Why Did He Do It? White Man.”

It is only now that his own demise is at hand that Rational Man stops to reflect, to look back upon what he’s wrought, to re-evaluate his goals, his trajectory, his path.

In so doing he discovers his scapegoating tendencies. He stands horrified at his reddened hands, bloodied by his extermination of entire cultures, entire races, entire species of life. “Why did he do it? White man.” asks the rock group Steeleye Span in their song, “White Man”:

Some sing of their glory,

You tell the true story,
Most men they don’t need it,
White man he kills for it.

They took to the seas,

Searching for a land
That they could call paradise,
Stealing the breeze that carried them toward the sun.

With lust in their eyes,

They found a land,
And said “We found paradise,
Think of the Lord, and look at the prize we’ve won.”

We know who they were,
They were the ones who killed their brothers to steal from others.
We know who they were,
They were the ones whose sons and daughters are doing it still. . . .

And in their hearts,
What did they feel?
Did they think they had the right to steal
Another man’s land
Who had no name
Oh, they didn’t think he’d feel the pain.

So they sailed away from their own country
To another man’s land far across the sea.
And they stole that land from the people there, And they called that land Australia.

Why did he do it, white man. . . .
They sailed away, one winter’s day,
To a sunlit land that was far away,
And they stole that land from the people there,
And they called that land America.

Why did he do it, white man. . . .

And in their hearts,
What did they feel?
Did they think they had the right to steal
Another man’s land
Who had no name.
Oh, they didn’t think he’d feel the pain. . . .

(from “Portfolio,” Steeleye Span, 1988)

This Radical Reversal, This Primal Return

In the wake of this new realization a new humility is necessarily born. Both of these are nurtured further by the Westerner’s own sciences — which have overturned his cherished premises, requiring visions of the truth quite at odds with what was used to get him to this pass, and, coincidentally enough, quite akin to that which had been thrown away, beat back, persecuted, and even killed in its embodiment earlier.

This radical reversal, this mushroom-like returning to our roots, reappraisal of our origins and foundations, may be the thing momentous enough and radical enough to save us, to abort our countdown to extermination. For surely a “Boy Scout” or “Civic League” approach to tackling the problems that beset us is perhaps worse than nothing in its deluding us into thinking we are accomplishing something, when it is major efforts and radical changes that are required.

Yet, as difficult as this reversal will be in the lifestyle changes, the efforts required in the domain of attitudes and conditioning — in terms of assailing the millenniums-strong fortifications of culturally conditioned ego — may verge on the near-miraculous. People do not change easily, if at all.

Still, we are aided, only fortuitously, by some of our own devices. We are goaded also by the specters of our own dissolution and by their lieutenants of epidemic disease who, sent ahead, are even now making their way among us — our sentinels too often sleeping, too infrequently and much too feebly signaling the alarm.

There is evidence that we are aided also by unacknowledged powers — seen and heralded only by the relatively few. All things considered, by the grace of God … and perhaps that solely … we might make it.

This Vision of a Primal Renaissance

Still, we must apply ourselves. We must make the effort to see clearly, to see fairly, to break through our cultural conditioning, to reach out to all those living/nonliving, to all that is threatened by our misproliferation of deeds.

So it is that this book seeks to be part of that great reversal, that primal return, indeed, that primal renaissance. In so doing it will unavoidably overturn many of our comfortable illusions. But it will attempt to do so on the basis of the evidence, and it will attempt to leave the Mystery where it properly belongs.

Still, considering this intention to lay to waste or to reverse so much that is part of Western conditioning, so much that is unquestioned as universally true, and common-sensically indisputable, for many people this may be a painful book to read. I have no solace for that, save that of the vision of the harmonious age, the primal renaissance emerging from all this current pain and confusion. That is a vision whose soothing silhouette will hopefully appear increasingly closer as we proceed — summoned by our yearning, self-inquiry, and effort — to hold our hand and guide us, even as we simultaneously observe our familiar cultural edifices crumbling about us.

But let us begin where it is necessary. Let us start by lowering our banner of being the pinnacle of cultural evolution. Getting a little humbler and peeking beneath the veil of pretentiousness, we may begin the journey downwards.

Continue with The First Retreat from the Natural Self Was Matriarchal Consciousness; It Should Hardly Be Our Goal: You Cannot “Balance” a Duality … You Can Only Transcend One.

Return to “Consciousness Is the Source of the Cosmos” … Physical Reality Is Metaphor: The Era of “Rational” Man Is Over, A Primal Return Has Begun


Chapter One References

Davies, Paul, and Gribbin, John. (1992). The Matter Myth: Dramatic Discoveries That Challenge Our Understanding of Physical Reality. New York: Simon & Schuster.

Eddington, Arthur Stanley. (1928). The Nature of the Physical World. London.

Ferris, Timothy. (1992). The Mind’s Sky: Human Intelligence in a Cosmic Context. New York: Bantam Books.

Kuhn, Thomas S. (1970). The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Labbe, Armand. (1991). “Consciousness versus awareness in the light of classical Eastern perspectives on the nature of transcendence.” Paper delivered at the 1991 Annual Conference of the Society for the Anthropology of Consciousness, March 21, 1991.

Nerlich, G. C. (1967). Arthur Stanley Eddington (1882-1944). In Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 458-460.

Sheldrake, Rupert. (1991). The Rebirth of Nature: The Greening of Science and God. New York: Bantam.

Steeleye Span. (1988). White man. From the recording, Portfolio. Newton, NJ: Shanachie Records. Audio recording.

 


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“Consciousness Is the Source of the Cosmos” … Physical Reality Is Metaphor: The Era of “Rational” Man Is Over, A Primal Return Has Begun

Matter Is Metaphor and The Holographic Universe: “There Is No Such Thing as Matter. All There Is, Is Mind and Motion.”

“The Stuff of the World Is Mind-Stuff”

We are living in stimulating and revolutionary times. For, even as we watch, the Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm is collapsing in the ocean of the new physics, “matter” is being swept away by “wavicles,” and scientists are beginning to acknowledge what the poet-seers have always known: that physical reality is metaphor, that the external world and all of its components are subtle yet elaborate webs thrown upon the formless, meaningful forms created from no-thing-ness . . . that matter is metaphor for Consciousness — which is the only real stuff knowable about existence, in fact is the only stuff of the Universe.

Physicist and astronomer, Arthur Stanley Eddington (1928) phrased it: “The stuff of the world is mind-stuff.” More recently, University of Minnesota physicist Roger S. Jones (1982) unveiled a position which he calls an “idealistic reevaluation of the physical world” (p. ix). He writes

I reject the myth of reality as external to the human mind, and I acknowledge consciousness as the source of the cosmos. It is mind that we see reflected in matter. Physical science is a metaphor with which the scientist, like the poet, creates and extends meaning and values in the quest for understanding and purpose. (1982, p. ix)

Even more recently, anthropologist Armand Labbe (1991) summed it up at a Society for the Anthropology of Consciousness conference saying, “Ultimately our physics . . . is going to demonstrate that essentially there is no such thing as matter. All there is, is mind and motion.”

Granted, this is an extreme position, a strict Idealist stance. But it is the only truly supportable one, in light of what we know from the new physics. That would be enough in itself to cause us to reflect on it. But this perspective is also supported, even demonstrated, by the discoveries of the “new psychology” as well. More about that later.

It is ironic that it would be the most “materialistic” and “hardest” of the sciences that would be leading the charge against the primacy-of-the-physical-world postulate (and, unfortunately, leaving the rest of the sciences — both social as well as natural sciences — behind). The discoveries from quantum physics, though some of them almost a hundred years old now, are, only with difficulty, being assimilated into the other sciences. For the most part, they are largely ignored; science going along ‘as if’ . . . that is, as if the Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm were still viable, as if the physical world was really “objective” reality, as if the mind could validly be considered an epiphenomenon of brain activity. So the old paradigm holds sway despite its inadequacy.

This is understandable, however. For truly acknowledging these newer perspectives requires a reformulation of theoretical positions, a rethinking of the Universe in much the same way that astronomical theories needed to be reformulated after the Copernican revolution. What we do not need are theories that disfigure themselves in trying to incorporate some (not all) of the new information and new perspectives in the way of the convoluted theories of the pre-Copernican astronomers who refused to accept the newer paradigm postulations.

This book, to the contrary, will attempt to consistently present a new-paradigm perspective.

In doing so we will need to employ perspectives that traditionally have made their philosophical home, in Western philosophy, at the address of Idealism, and more specifically, the subcategories therein of Panpsychism and Pantheism. These viewpoints are the dominant ones in Eastern philosophy, however. And most recently they reemerge — in “modern science,” of all places — under rubrics such as holographic.

Primitive Philosophy

Nevertheless, it is interesting that in the Western traditions these viewpoints have often been denigrated by referring to them as “primitive philosophy.” It seems that when Western civilization broke from the trajectories of the other civilizations of the planet, it needed to establish its distinction and difference as radically as possible.

This is a common pattern in change. We notice this behavioral style in the upwardly mobile corporate executive or artist who feels the need to adopt a lavish lifestyle in order to hide her humble beginnings.

We notice also its relation to the behavior of scapegoating. We observe this aspect of it watching our executive become a Republican and begin to “bad mouth” the same social programs and social class that nurtured her earlier on. We might call it the “Clarence Thomas syndrome.”

Nevertheless, the importance of this tendency cannot be overstated in Western philosophy. We see it reaching its peak in the medieval Renaissance in Europe, especially in the rise of Rationalist philosophy. Glorifying himself with the regalia of “Reason,” Western man (the masculine is necessary here for it was characteristically a male phenomenon) ascended the throne in the castle of Nature and deigned to cast his eyes below him on all the rest of living things, nay, on the rest of all of Creation.

From such imperial heights Western man deduced the workings of the Universe — utilizing his purportedly powerful tool of Reason — and conceived how he should apportion and determine all that he surveyed. For surely his perception and apprehension of a thing was akin to possession . . . he reasoned conveniently.

Thus adorned and fortified, Rational Man went about subduing all that came before his view. Letting nothing as trivial as philosophies, traditions, cultures, and the peoples who embodied them stand in his way; nor even, in this century, allowing the complete elimination, for all of eternity, of millions of species of living things, evolving out of the mists of billions of years, obstruct him in the least from the attainment of desires, regardless how trivial. Thus he “succeeded” to such an extent that he threatens now even his own existence.

Continue with “Why Did He Do It? White Man.” It Is Only Now That His Own Demise Is at Hand That Rational Man Stops to Reflect — The Primal Return

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Occupy Science … A Call for a Scientific Awakening: In Tossing Away Our Species Blinders, We Approach a Truth Far Beyond Science

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Only by Leaving Can a Fish Know It Lives in Water: Biologically Constituted Realities Summary and A Call to End Science’s Culture War

What I’m saying in this part is that basically our sciences have shown they can not determine what is real,558008_447511325288521_2045342229_n let alone measure it, because they are extensions of our senses which are themselves imperfect. So we cannot really know what is real. Further, we find that just as culture creates our reality for us, that prior to that our biology creates the reality upon which culture can build. This means that we are able to understand what is human reality at least, though not ultimate reality, by looking at the only reality that all humans share—our biological one.

We will see shortly that means that the way we come into the world—our conception, womb life, and birth—create the foundations upon which all our other perceptions are built, and these being unique to humans mean that humans will be the only species seeing the world exactly the way we do.

bwv01aFurther, while focusing on our biology as a basis for understanding what is fundamental about humanness, we are able to compare cultures in relation to that biology, though not in any other way. What we will see this means is that while we cannot compare cultures for the most part—this is called cultural relativity—we can compare them in terms of certain things all cultures share which have to do with the fact that all humans have the same kind of body and biological history: an example of that would be the way cultures deal with birth, specifically the pain of it.

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“Ultimately our physics . . . is going to demonstrate that essentially there is no such thing as matter. All there is is mind and motion.” – Armand Labbe

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You cannot convince a fish it lives in water. You can only give the fish the experience of being in air; then it will understand.

Our combined efforts in psychology, physics, biology, and anthropology have led us to an impasse. We have been led to conclude that our view of reality is symbolic. We have learned, above all, not what to know, but that we know not . . . i.e., that we are incapable of truly knowing.

So, if we can’t know, why then bother to know anything? We seek to know because it is useful to our biological survival to know. That which we “know,” in our most refined science and in our daily lives, is that which is, or has been, in some way useful to the biological existence of our species.

Each one of us is potentially Mind at Large. each person is at each moment capable of remembering all that has ever happened to him and of perceiving everything that is happening everywhere in the universe. But in so far as we are animals, our business is at all costs to survive. To make biological survival possible, Mind at Large has to be funneled through the reducing valve of the brain and nervous system. What comes out at the other end is a measly trickle of the kind of consciousness which will help us to stay alive on the surface of this particular planet

When this is reversed by various methods, and the brain is itself inhibited from its task of reducing awareness so that “Mind at Large seeps past the no longer watertight valve, all kinds of biologically useless things start to happen.”

“If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is … infinite.” – William Blake

Our sciences have led us to learn that what we call reality is what we have found to be useful for us as a species, but that it is not necessarily what is True and is certainly not all that is true or real. So we find that the Reality of It All or the All That Is gets reduced down from what it is to the snippet of it that we have found to be biologically useful.

But if we wish to know not merely what is practical but what is actually True or Reality, we need to go way beyond the smattering of facts thrown up by our ordinary senses and the sciences that are extensions of them. There are levels of that diminution of Reality—from All That Is down through what the individual knows to be true. So to know what is True, we need to reverse those reductions in true understanding.

We find that in doing this reversal, some startling things are revealed. For example, from the perspective of each greater awareness, each more limited perspective becomes understandable and the different ones of those perspectives can be compared. For example, it is difficult for one individual to truly understand another. However, standing within a knowledge of psychology in general we have a better understanding of another and we can compare one individual’s reality with another and come up with meaningful and true conclusions, even comparisons and evaluations. That is, indeed, why we have the science of psychology in the first place.

But at the level of cultures, a similar thing happens. Anthropologists come necessarily to the conclusion that another culture cannot truly be understood by someone standing in a different culture. Just as one individual cannot exactly understand another’s reality, it is even more impossible for someone from one culture to be able to truly view the world through the lenses or worldview of those born into another culture.

However, here again, we can have a better understanding of each culture and can even compare cultures somewhat when coming from the perspective of our common human biology. For all cultures have to relate to the nature of our body and its abilities, senses, and capabilities. All cultures make constructions about, around, and from the particular biological frame that humans have, so cultures can be compared at least in relation to those commonalities of humans. This means more than just that cultures can be compared in relation to biological realities like birth and death, for it is even important and instructive to compare them to more basic realities of human biology such as pain, pleasure, happiness, liberty, and so on. All humans feel and have concepts about these things. However, we see how non-absolute these realities are as soon as we look at the realities or consciousness of life forms other than human. Can we truly say that a lizard has a concept about liberty or happiness? Can we say that an amoeba or bacteria feels freedom or the lack of it.

It follows that to understand truth beyond our biologically constituted realities … to be able to get an idea of what reality might be for entities and life in general and not just humans, we would need to stand inside a paradigm of understanding that would apply to all species—both known and unknown. We would need to take a stance on the foundation of a trans-species perspective—that is, what is true for all species, not just humans. This is what science says it is attempting to do, but it actually does not. Because we have found out that sciences can only look in areas that we as humans ahead of time have an idea that something might be. In other words, science is an extension of our senses. So to do more, we have to expand our imagination to include what might be the perspectives of other species … other planetmates. This is what we our doing with our planetmate consciousness … our Planetmate Views. It is what The Great Reveal is all about.

But, you say, how can we do that? How can we know the way another being or life form, other than human, might view Reality? We can’t. But the point is we are more likely to come up with something truer than what we already know when we at least try to do that. And trying to do that means starting with dropping the presupposition, the arrogance, that humans have a superior and more real understanding of Reality. And when we do that, simply that alone, we already find we have a much expanded understanding of what is really Real. For even what we are able to know about other species shows us some of the ways they see things differently than us. So simply by not assuming we are the pinnacle of creation and acknowledging that, for example, a dog really does have more accurate smelling ability and an eagle a greater ability to see, and imagining what that would mean for us or keeping that in mind, we come to an appreciation of ourselves as a part of Nature, not a ruler of Nature; just as in our understandings of the realities-subjectivities-feelings of other humans led us to know that we are not rulers of other people; just as our understanding of other cultures have led us to know that one culture is not better, superior to, or more dominant over another.

The conclusions from all this understanding is that our sciences are important in establishing facts and reality, but the ones they come up with are only relative to our species, not necessarily to any other species, and not necessarily do they give us a true idea of What Really Is.

You think this is irrelevant to know? Well, to give just one example, think of all our forays into space and our imaginings of other beings from other than this planet. If you take the perspective that I am encouraging here, you will notice how astoundingly naïve are our expectations and how crude the instruments we use to detect other life forms. For they all are built on an expectation of finding beings that are at least somewhat like ourselves. You say, no, our scientists aren’t assuming other beings of high consciousness would look like us. But you should know I mean that in our scientists saying what are the building blocks of life–water, and so on–they are showing a bias about “life” that it is something like what we know. Notice also that even the idea that a “higher” level of consciousness itself has its roots in this idea that a human consciousness is superior to other kinds we know of.

So these assumptions built into our science are laughable in their arrogance. Meanwhile, in understanding how limited and relative is our human perspective, we are able to imagine other possibilities for life and its variations. We begin to approach the perspectives of mystics. We begin to understand how it is not outside the realm of possibility that even what we consider non-life and inanimate to be somehow conscious or a form of consciousness, even if we cannot call it “life”—which is, we see now, itself part of our limited species interpretation.

So, in tossing away our species blinders, we approach a truth far beyond science, though not overturning science. What Is ends up not, as fundamentalists might think, opposed to science, rather inclusive of science … but including so, so much more. And in doing this we see that it is the mystics and the consciousness researchers who are likely to have the most accurate angle on Reality.

Ultimately this means that now that we know that common sense materialism is simply a biological construct of the species human, we can relearn that it is Consciousness that is our only knowable Reality, but also that it is Infinite, yes, but Fantastic as well.

“Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a persistent one.” Albert Einstein

“A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest. A kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. The true value of a human being is determined by the measure and the sense in which they have obtained liberation from the self. We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if humanity is to survive.” Albert Einstein (1945)

It is the so called “anomalies” of science that hold the keys to the reality that lies beyond science. Looking at them we see a pattern upon which to stand in bringing together the different viewpoints or paradigms that are not reconcilable otherwise. These different viewpoints are the different scientific ones and the different cultural ones as well as the different biological ones—that is, the perspectives or views of different species… the different planetmate views.

The anomalies that we have found to have the most potential for aiding us in this venture to a greater paradigm or framework within which to comprehend all these smaller views are those that have come out of consciousness research. This comes from scientific as well as spiritual sources. It is often experientially based, though it is hardly just anecdotal since these reports are replicatable and verifiable and they are often and can easily be collected and collated scientifically.

These scientific approaches to what were once in the realm of just the spiritual or religious are going on more now than ever before in the history of the world. Whether from fields of the new physics, the new biology, or the consciousness branches of psychology and anthropology, they are uncovering more new formerly inexplicable data of events that have heretofore been beyond the views of our sciences and beyond our common sense materialism—our world of “brute facts,” which we have found are not incontestable at all but are only solidly true in relation to the fact that we are of the species of humans.

We have found that these new facts are not as biologically irrelevant as was assumed by us, however. In fact, the survival of our species and indeed of the life on our planet probably depend upon us incorporating this information into a newer and more comprehensive understanding of reality. Fortunately the construction of this new framework is being carried out. And it and its implications are astounding, revelatory, and revolutionary in all respects imaginable. This new revolutionary model is unveiled in more detail in this article.

The crises of our time, it becomes increasingly clear, are the necessary impetus for the revolution now under way. And once we understand nature’s transformative powers, we see that it is our powerful ally, not a force to feared our subdued. —Thomas Kuhn

The political and social revolutions, which we are seeing erupt around the world from Arab Springs to American Autumns and in global Occupy movements, have been going on more quietly and for a longer time in our sciences. Indeed, it may be said that to some extent this scientific Awakening preceded and precipitated the social one.

Still—although our very survival depends on a paradigm change, or shift—it is being resisted mightily by our communities of scientific researchers. This Scientific Awakening is as much a threat to the corporate hegemony over modern culture as is the social and political Awakenings. There has been as much a battle in science over the last fifty years—a scientific culture war, if you will—as there has been the one in our societies around the world … and for the same reasons. Paradigm shift threatens the status quo; it is seen to have the potential to upset the traditional and engrained financial structures and the social stratification built upon them. That is, this scientific culture war is also class war in disguise.

But scientists and intellectuals are as much a product of an old paradigm even when they propose to not be. So often they miscategorize new developments in their fields within old outdated dualistic frames. In particular they see the findings of consciousness research and misconstrue it as being within the old science-religion debates and struggles. So they are as unable to see old paradigm influences on themselves and are as clueless in moving beyond them as are their counterparts in the social and political arenas, where not just old paradigm right wing folks are blind to the messages of the Awakening but even many traditional liberals are unable to see past their traditional ways of categorizing to understand the message and import of the new paradigm social and political movements of Occupy and Arab Spring. So they misunderstand the Occupy movement’s multi-messages and calls for complete re-visioning as being no message. And they misconstrue the new paradigm uprisings for freedom and justice throughout the world and especially in the Arab world in the tired old terminologies of economics and imperialism. They misconstrue heartfelt aspirations for a global coming together and unity of humanity in old paradigm New World Order terms. They misunderstand new paradigm seekings for consciousness change and revolution using old-paradigm, medieval even, illuminati concepts.

This is a call for sciences to allow themselves to let go of old ways and embrace new visions. In the past, it has taken centuries, at times, for these paradigm shifts to happen. Societies have had to wait, and entire generations have needed to die off before people could enjoy the freedom of being released from old bindings of thought and could realize the benefits of new revelations. We do not have that kind of time right now. This new paradigm, gestating within the scientific community for fifty or so years previous, erupted into the global consciousness fifty years ago with the social and cultural revolutions of the Sixties. They have done battle within scientific communities as well as in the society at large, and in the same way have been beaten back to the peripheries by the overwhelming power of the entrenched interests.

But entire generations have left the scene by now. New generations seeded with the new paradigm visions rained upon them by elder veterans of the culture war and enjoying fruits of wisdom plucked from an ongoing though less visible counterculture born in those times have arisen. So, the time is ripe.

The change is necessary. We can no longer afford to hesitate. The time for the Scientific Awakening is now.

It is, I think, particularly in periods of acknowledged crisis that scientists have turned to philosophical analysis as a device for unlocking the riddles of their field. Scientists have not generally needed or wanted to be philosophers. —Thomas Kuhn

The historian of science may be tempted to claim that when paradigms change, the world itself changes with them. Led by a new paradigm, scientists adopt new instruments and look in new places. even more important, during revolutions, scientists see new and different things when looking with familiar instruments in places they have looked before. It is rather as if the professional community had been suddenly transported to another planet where familiar objects are seen in a different light and are joined by unfamiliar ones as well. —Thomas Kuhn

‘Normal’ science, in Kuhn’s sense, exists. It is the activity of the non-revolutionary, or more precisely, the not-too-critical professional: of the science student who accepts the ruling dogma of the day… in my view the ‘normal’ scientist, as Kuhn describes him, is a person one ought to be sorry for… He has been taught in a dogmatic spirit: he is a victim of indoctrination… I can only say that I see a very great danger in it and in the possibility of its becoming normal… a danger to science and, indeed, to our civilization. And this shows why I regard Kuhn’s emphasis on the existence of this kind of science as so important. — Karl Raimund Popper

Well-established theories collapse under the weight of new facts and observations which cannot be explained, and then accumulate to the point where the once useful theory is clearly obsolete.
[Using Thomas S. Kuhn’s theories to frame his argument about the relationship between science and technology: as new facts continue to accumulate, a new, more accurate paradigm must replace the old one.] — Al Gore

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Why We Know Not and A Call to Know Instead: Beyond “Flat Earth” Materialism—Scientific Awakening Is as Crucial for Paradigm Shift as is the Social and Political Awakenings

A Call to Our Sciences to Embrace the Awakening, Which It, Too, Has Been Resisting: Biologically Constituted Realities, Part Seven

Although our very survival depends on a paradigm change, or shift, it is being resisted mightily by our communities of scientific researchers. This Scientific Awakening is as much a threat to the corporate hegemony over modern culture as is the social and political Awakenings. There has been as much a battle in science over the last fifty years—a scientific culture war, if you will—as there has been the one in our societies around the world … and for the same reasons. Paradigm shift threatens the status quo.

The crises of our time, it becomes increasingly clear, are the necessary impetus for the revolution now under way. And once we understand nature’s transformative powers, we see that it is our powerful ally, not a force to feared our subdued. —Thomas Kuhn

Summary and Preface: The political and social revolutions, which we are seeing erupt around the world from Arab Springs to American Autumns and in global Occupy movements, have been going on more quietly and for a longer time in our sciences. Indeed, it may be said that to some extent this scientific Awakening preceded and precipitated the social one.

Still—although our very survival depends on a paradigm change, or shift—it is being resisted mightily by our communities of scientific researchers. This Scientific Awakening is as much a threat to the corporate hegemony over modern culture as is the social and political Awakenings. There has been as much a battle in science over the last fifty years—a scientific culture war, if you will—as there has been the one in our societies around the world … and for the same reasons. Paradigm shift threatens the status quo; it is seen to have the potential to upset the traditional and engrained financial structures and the social stratification built upon them. That is, this scientific culture war is also class war in disguise.

But scientists and intellectuals are as much a product of an old paradigm even when they propose to not be. So often they miscategorize new developments in their fields within old outdated dualistic frames. In particular they see the findings of consciousness research and misconstrue it as being within the old science-religion debates and struggles. So they are as unable to see old paradigm influences on themselves and are as clueless in moving beyond them as are their counterparts in the social and political arenas, where not just old paradigm right wing folks are blind to the messages of the Awakening but even many traditional liberals are unable to see past their traditional ways of categorizing to understand the message and import of the new paradigm social and political movements of Occupy and Arab Spring. So they misunderstand the Occupy movement’s multi-messages and calls for complete re-visioning as being no message. And they misconstrue the new paradigm uprisings for freedom and justice throughout the world and especially in the Arab world in the tired old terminologies of economics and imperialism. They misconstrue heartfelt aspirations for a global coming together and unity of humanity in old paradigm New World Order terms. They misunderstand new paradigm seekings for consciousness change and revolution using old-paradigm, medieval even, illuminati concepts.

This is a call for sciences to allow themselves to let go of old ways and embrace new visions. In the past, it has taken centuries, at times, for these paradigm shifts to happen. Societies have had to wait, and entire generations have needed to die off before people could enjoy the freedom of being released from old bindings of thought and could realize the benefits of new revelations. We do not have that kind of time right now. This new paradigm, gestating within the scientific community for fifty or so years previous, erupted into the global consciousness fifty years ago with the social and cultural revolutions of the Sixties. They have done battle within scientific communities as well as in the society at large, and in the same way have been beaten back to the peripheries by the overwhelming power of the entrenched interests.

But entire generations have left the scene by now. New generations seeded with the new paradigm visions rained upon them by elder veterans of the culture war and enjoying fruits of wisdom plucked from an ongoing though less visible counterculture born in those times have arisen. So, the time is ripe.

The change is necessary. We can no longer afford to hesitate. The time for the Scientific Awakening is now.

It is, I think, particularly in periods of acknowledged crisis that scientists have turned to philosophical analysis as a device for unlocking the riddles of their field. Scientists have not generally needed or wanted to be philosophers. —Thomas Kuhn

The historian of science may be tempted to claim that when paradigms change, the world itself changes with them. Led by a new paradigm, scientists adopt new instruments and look in new places. even more important, during revolutions, scientists see new and different things when looking with familiar instruments in places they have looked before. It is rather as if the professional community had been suddenly transported to another planet where familiar objects are seen in a different light and are joined by unfamiliar ones as well. —Thomas Kuhn

‘Normal’ science, in Kuhn’s sense, exists. It is the activity of the non-revolutionary, or more precisely, the not-too-critical professional: of the science student who accepts the ruling dogma of the day… in my view the ‘normal’ scientist, as Kuhn describes him, is a person one ought to be sorry for… He has been taught in a dogmatic spirit: he is a victim of indoctrination… I can only say that I see a very great danger in it and in the possibility of its becoming normal… a danger to science and, indeed, to our civilization. And this shows why I regard Kuhn’s emphasis on the existence of this kind of science as so important. — Karl Raimund Popper

Well-established theories collapse under the weight of new facts and observations which cannot be explained, and then accumulate to the point where the once useful theory is clearly obsolete.
[Using Thomas S. Kuhn’s theories to frame his argument about the relationship between science and technology: as new facts continue to accumulate, a new, more accurate paradigm must replace the old one.] — Al Gore

Why We Know Not

The mere existence of this new data—these keys to biological transcendence, these formerly inexplicable anomalies of science—trigger a certain insecurity in that they undermine a familiar, habitual, and thoroughly ego-invested commitment to a view of reality.

I have noticed a fear and hostility toward the new paradigm and its evidence, even among self-professedly open-minded and fieldwork-seasoned academicians and Ph.D.s. After observing and delving below this reaction for years,draft_lens1379674module111872551photo_1280668900ufo-london394340_485721344772182_353499239_n I have consistently detected a pattern of irrationality that associates, somehow, all this new stuff with things like having to go to Church as a child, hell-fiery father gods, and Jerry Falwell. Though nothing could be further from the truth, they confuse it with right wing, Tea Party-type politics and evangelical religions.Grof_AncientWisdonicon They think it is connected to Grof_LSDPsychotherapyiconthe attacks on the theory of evolution,Grof_HumanSurvivalicon the idea of Intelligent Design, and the drives to install Creationism in our schools.

So these people harbor the mistaken notion that spiritual or transpersonal realities have something to do with organized religion, when they are quite different and, indeed, often at odds with each other. [See Primal Spirituality: The Inner Authority.]

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The purposes of this chapter do not allow an elaboration of either the new evidence or the new paradigm that I have discussed.

1Grof_BeyondBrainiconIn Beyond the Brain: Birth, Death and Transcendence in Psychotherapy, Grof (1985) presents in the first chapter—which comprises ninety-one pages—an insightful analysis of paradigms and historical process along with an exhaustive sampling of the new evidence from the array of sciences, sociohistorical trends, 10-emergence-440_thumb417413_10151122750761195_1257359537_nand cultural processes that I have been mentioning. In addition, Grof (1985) constructs a thorough presentation, delineation, and analysis of the holographic model of a new paradigm. I recommend those pages highly.

Directly at hand I have included a video, titled “Holographic Universe“, which is an excellent overview of the model and makes the clear case that science has most definitely overturned the materialistic paradigm which birthed it hundreds of years ago.

All that being said, I wish to point out that the recent and rapid emergence of the field of transpersonal psychology itself is pushed by an inability to continually disregard the evidence of our own senses that does not fit with the mechanical paradigms we were taught.

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This new evidence, which is pouring forth on the cutting edges of our modern sciences, has made the Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm as obsolete as the flat earth one.

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A Call to Know Instead

However, similar to the way in which the earth is flat in the particular environs of one’s daily life, and for a considerable distance surrounding, the Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm likewise has its limited usefulness.483377_396568390391692_1865419850_n487454_10151033138147681_1383425000_nBut if we are to get moving on our species’s continuing adventure into discovering the nature of reality, we must acknowledge its limitations.

What bodes against this happening is an incredible, Jupiterian weight of egoic, economic, and time investment in the old (N-C) paradigm that pushes most people to insist upon its ultimate validity. Historically, this has been the unfortunate fate of every emergent paradigm facing the entrenched one. Decades and even centuries have often been required while the new worldview has been put “on hold” until entire, invested generations have left the scene . . . totally regardless of the quality, quantity, or indisputability of the new evidence (Kuhn, 1970). What a waste! 304848_223833517672370_357125859_n408309_1764639612598_1737376259_863778_1611513471_n_thumbEspecially in that when the new ideas are finally accepted and incorporated the effect is that of inspiring a renaissance of new frontiers of research and theoretical enterprise and thus a surging powerfully forth of the released creative tide. Let me state emphatically, in the face of such dire historical precedents, that there is no inherent insecurity involved in the new paradigm, or inherent danger, or inherent trigger for anxiety, or necessary economic disadvantage (if one has the capacity to change with new developments and thought). [Footnote 5]

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So why do we not, then, get on with the incorporation of this new, heretofore unexplainable, data and with the creation of new paradigm models (not, of necessity, Grof’s) for making sense of it?

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Grof_CosmicGameicon417246_3092898021816_1495969000_nWhy not rise and reach forth to new and inclusive thought that embraces the facts of existence, instead of a kind of thinking that requires either a psychic numbing to the avalanche of new evidence or a thick and sturdy guard against information from all but thoroughly sanctioned and sanitized, perfectly safe and riskless, or intractably bureaucratized sources? I must point out that by now many scientists, of diverse fields, 0018-astronomer2_iphave abandoned the old model long ago and, at this point, Murphet_ManMiraclesiconconsider its inadequacy to be well-nigh common Grof_ConsciousnessRevolutioniconknowledge. Having been over to the new paradigm a while, they feel it to be familiar territory; they find it useful (after all!), stable, workable, and even pleasurable terrain. They await the rest of us in the adventure of splicing or merging our insights about an explanatory framework that has room for the evidence of the new techniques and sciences; and thereby blowing away the door jammed, opening it wide to the next new phase of discovery of the nature of reality that is called the scientific enterprise.

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Continue with Occupy Science … A Call for a Scientific Awakening: In Tossing Away Our Species Blinders, We Approach a Truth Far Beyond Science

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Footnote

5. Thomas Kuhn was an American science historian and science philosopher who held that science was not a steady, cumulative acquisition of knowledge, but it is “a series of peaceful interludes punctuated by intellectually violent revolutions.” Here are some especially prescient and relevant quotes from and about Thomas Kuhn:

Under normal conditions the research scientist is not an innovator but a solver of puzzles, and the puzzles upon which he concentrates are just those which he believes can be both stated and solved within the existing scientific tradition.

Normal science does not aim at novelties of fact or theory and, when successful, finds none.

In a sense that I am unable to explicate further, the proponents of competing paradigms practice their trades in different worlds.

Later scientific theories are better than earlier ones for solving puzzles in the often quite different environments to which they are applied. That is not a relativist’s position, and it displays the sense in which I am a convinced believer in scientific progress

Scientific development depends in part on a process of non-incremental or revolutionary change. Some revolutions are large, like those associated with the names of Copernicus, Newton, or Darwin, but most are much smaller, like the discovery of oxygen or the planet Uranus. The usual prelude to changes of this sort is, I believed, the awareness of anomaly, of an occurrence or set of occurrences that does not fit existing ways of ordering phenomena. The changes that result therefore require ‘putting on a different kind of thinking-cap’, one that renders the anomalous lawlike but that, in the process, also transforms the order exhibited by some other phenomena, previously unproblematic.

The success of the paradigm… is at the start largely a promise of success … Normal science consists in the actualization of that promise… Mopping up operations are what engage most scientists throughout their careers. They constitute what I am here calling normal science… That enterprise seems an attempt to force nature into the preformed and relatively inflexible box that the paradigm supplies. No part of the aim of normal science is to call forth new sorts of phenomena; indeed those that will not fit the box are often not seen at all. Nor do scientists normally aim to invent new theories, and they are often intolerant of those invented by others. – Thomas Kuhn

At the heart of science is an essential balance between two seemingly contradictory attitudes–an openness to new ideas, no matter how bizarre or counterintuitive they may be, and the most ruthless skeptical scrutiny of all ideas, old and new. This is how deep truths are winnowed from deep nonsense. — Carl Sagan

References

Adzema, Michael. (1981). Womb With a View: Spiritual Aspects of Intrauterine Experience. Sonoma Grove/ 44 Varda, Rohnert Park, CA 94928. (Unpublished manuscript)

Adzema, Michael. (1984). Cells With a View: Spiritual and Philosophical Aspects of Sperm and Egg Experience . Sonoma Grove/ 44 Varda, Rohnert Park, CA 94928. (Unpublished manuscript)

Adzema, Michael. (1985). A primal perspective on spirituality. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 25(3), 83-116.

Adzema, Michael. (1991). Falls From Grace: Spiritual and Philosophical Perspectives of Prenatal and Primal Experience. Master’s thesis, Sonoma State University, Rohnert Park, CA.

Anscombe, G. E. M. (1958). On brute facts. Analysis 18(2).

Bohm, David. (1980). Wholeness and the Implicate Order. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

D’Andrade, Roy G. (1984). Cultural meaning systems. In Culture theory: Essays on mind, self, and emotion, R. Shweder and R. LeVine (eds.), pp. 88-119, New York: Cambridge University Press.

D’Andrade, Roy G. (1987). Anthropological theory: Where did it go? (How can we get it back?). University of California, San Diego. (Unpublished paper)

Grof, Stanislav. (1970). Beyond psychoanalysis I. Implications of LSD research for understanding dimensions of human personality. Darshana International 10 (55).

Grof, Stanislav. (1975). Realms of the Human Unconscious: Observations from LSD Research. New York: Viking Press.

Grof, Stanislav. (1980). LSD Psychotherapy . Pomona, CA: Hunter House.

Grof, Stanislav. (ed.) (1984). Ancient Wisdom and Modern Science. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Grof, Stanislav. (1985). Beyond the Brain: Birth, Death, and Transcendence in Psychotherapy. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Grof, Stanislav. (1988a). The Adventure of Self-Discovery: Dimensions of Consciousness and New Perspectives in Psychotherapy and Inner Exploration. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Grof, Stanislav. (ed.) (1988b). Human Survival and Consciousness Evolution. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Grof, Stanislav, and Grof, Christina. (1980). Beyond Death: The Gates of Consciousness. London: Thames & Hudson.

Grof, Stanislav, and Grof, Christina. (eds.) (1989). Spiritual Emergency: When Personal Transformation Becomes a Crisis . Los Angeles: Jeremy P. Tarcher.

Grof, Stanislav, and Grof, Christina. (1990). The Stormy Search for the Self: A Guide to Personal Growth Through Transformational Crisis. Los Angeles: Jeremy P. Tarcher.

Grof, Stanislav, and Halifax, Joan. (1977). The Human Encounter with Death. New York: E.P. Dutton.

Huxley, Aldous. (1956). The Doors of Perception and Heaven and Hell. New York: Harper & Row.

Kuhn, Thomas S. 1970. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Labbe, Armand. (1991). Consciousness versus awareness in the light of classical Eastern perspectives on the nature of transcendence. Paper delivered at the 1991 Annual Conference of the Society for the Anthropology of Consciousness, March 21, 1991.

Pribram, Karl. (1971). Languages of the Brain. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.

Pribram, Karl. (1976). Problems concerning the structure of consciousness. In Consciousness and the Brain, G. Globus (ed.) New York: Plenum.

Sahlins, Marshall. (1976). Culture and Practical Reason. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Searle, John R. (1969). Speech Acts: An Essay in the Philosophy of Language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Wilber, Kenneth. (1977). The Spectrum of Consciousness. Wheaton, Il: Quest.

Wilber, Kenneth. (1980). The Atman Project. Wheaton, Il: Quest.

Wilber, Kenneth. (1981). Up from Eden. New York: Anchor Books.

Winkelman, Michael. (1990). The evolution of consciousness: An essay review of Up from Eden (Wilber 1981). Anthropology of Consciousness 1(3-4), 24-31.

Zukav, Gary. (1979). The Dancing Wu Li Masters. New York: W. Morrow.


Related Article: Go to “A Primal Perspective on Spirituality” by Mickel Adzema.

Related Book: Go to Primal Renaissance: The Emerging Millennial Return by Michael D. Adzema.

Related Book: Go to Apocalypse, or New Age?: The Emerging Perinatal Unconscious by Michael D. Adzema.

Related Article: Go to “Reunion With the Positive (Self): The Other Half of the ‘Cure'” by Michael D. Adzema.

Related Article: Go to “The Emerging Perinatal Unconscious: Consciousness Evolution or Apocalypse?” by Michael D. Adzema.

Related Article: Go to “The Scenery of Healing: Commentary on deMause’s ‘Restaging Prenatal and Birth Traumas in War and Social Violence'” by Michael D. Adzema.

 


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The Challenge to Know More: The New Evidence, Pouring Forth from Our Sciences, Has Made Our Common Sense Materialistic Assumptions About Our Reality as Obsolete as Our Flat Earth Ones

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A New Paradigm Emerging—Bridging the Barriers Between Species, Biological Transcendence: This Is the Place Where Even Hard Core “Realists” Learn How Little They Know 

Biologically Constituted Realities, Part Six

Wonder of wonders, finally in our evolution—in this very time of ours—there may be more people who are focusing on those keys to possible biological transcendence than ever before…. All of this despite the fact that within the “real rules” of the Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm those anomalies have absolutely no possibility of existing or being able to happen . . . . Yet they do. Similarly, within the “real world” of “brute facts” related to biological survivability they seemingly find no place . . . . Yet we stumble over them.

Preface and Summary: It is the so called “anomalies” of science that hold the keys to the reality that lies beyond science. Looking at them we see a pattern upon which to stand in bringing together the different viewpoints or paradigms that are not reconcilable otherwise. These different viewpoints are the different scientific ones and the different cultural ones as well as the different biological ones—that is, the perspectives or views of different species… the different planetmate views.

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The anomalies that we have found to have the most potential for aiding us in this venture to a greater paradigm or framework within which to comprehend all these smaller views are those that have come out of consciousness research. This comes from scientific as well as spiritual sources. It is often experientially based, though it is hardly just anecdotal since these reports are replicatable and verifiable and they are often and can easily be collected and collated scientifically.

These scientific approaches to what were once in the realm of just the spiritual or religious are going on more now than ever before in the history of the world. Whether from fields of the new physics, the new biology, or the consciousness branches of psychology and anthropology, they are uncovering more new formerly inexplicable data of events that have heretofore been beyond the views of our sciences and beyond our common sense materialism—our world of “brute facts,” which we have found are not incontestable at all but are only solidly true in relation to the fact that we are of the species of humans.

We have found that these new facts are not as biologically irrelevant as was assumed by us, however. In fact, the survival of our species and indeed of the life on our planet probably depend upon us incorporating this information into a newer and more comprehensive understanding of reality. Fortunately the construction of this new framework is being carried out. And it and its implications are astounding, revelatory, and revolutionary in all respects imaginable. This new revolutionary model is unveiled in more detail in this article.

A New Paradigm Emerging

562802_469139956443536_476154461_nFor unless we do this, unless we keep in mind the limitations of our reality constructions—including our “scientific” ones—we have absolutely no way of understanding certain incorrigible and “biologically useless” facts that intrude upon our “real world” and that are scared into the light of our biological parameters by our scientific rummaging through the bushes. 10-emergence-440_thumbThese “useless” side effects of our scientific enterprise may indeed contain the keys to our venturing forth, to at least some small degree, beyond the biological real-world confines of our predecessors. For just as we have seen that standing on a deeper, more encompassing paradigm than the cultural makes transcultural discourse and understanding possible, so also standing on one deeper than the biological may bring trans-biological understanding closer.

320685_287043257975984_1019571197_nFollowing the reasoning I have been presenting, one can speculate that the prospects for bridging the boundaries between species (of both the known and “unknown” variety) as well as between our physical reality and other possible “non-physical” ones are good if we can find a way to look at that physical/biological (Newtonian-Cartesian) level from a deeper grounding in spiritual (or transpersonal) reality. In fact, the evidence from LSD research, some spiritual literature, and various aspects of “new age” phenomena that are washing up on the shore of a variety of disciplines is exactly to that effect.

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Indeed, wonder of wonders, finally in our evolution—in this very time of ours—there may be more people who are focusing on those keys to possible biological transcendence than ever before. Additionally, these researchers and seekers are scientifically, empirically, and experientially researching, eliciting, and perceiving many such incorrigible and “useless” phenomena and events. Most importantly of all, they are finding that these events can be intersubjectively validated—can be intertemporally and, indeed, empirically confirmed, demonstrated, and/or significantly correlated so that they can be proven to have intersubjective and/or replicatable validity. All of this despite the fact that within the “real rules” of the Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm they have absolutely no possibility of existing or being able to happen . . . . Yet they do. Similarly, within the “real world” of “brute facts” related to biological survivability they seemingly find no place . . . . Yet we stumble over them.

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404758_10151168816692300_1663001410_nIf all of this were not enough, we find that these incorrigible facts provide more than a pathway to a glimpse outside our biological blinders, more than a puncture in our epistemological seal, and more than a transcendence of our biological paradigm. 381068_2409354290062_410697896_nWe find that this information from “outside” the table of our biological board game is less biologically useless than was thought from within the borders of that board game. We find, indeed, that our species’s assessment through natural selection of that which exists beyond it was less than perfect. We find that we are on the verge of re-evaluating that assessment and—to the extent it is possible and driven (once again) by biological survivability—of expanding our biological-cultural constructions to admit and give meaning to some of them.

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561122_4590595203775_1542758755_nStanislav Grof (1970, 1975, 1980, 1984, 1985, 1988a, 1988b; Grof and Grof 1980, 1989, 1990; Grof and Halifax 1977) is one such pioneer in this sort of “useless” research. Though he is by no means alone, I mention him in that he has achieved far more than simply demonstrating the validity of particular incorrigible facts that turn our familiar, comfy, Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm on its ear. asdafasdfaAdditionally, Grof (1985) puts forth a model, a framework for a new paradigm. Bringing together the physicist Bohm’s (1980) model of the universe and the neurosurgeon Pribram’s (1971, 1976) model of the brain, he presents a holonomic “perspective” or “theory” based upon the idea of a hologram. The important aspect of this perspective is that it allows the inclusion and understanding of these new existential facts, yet does not contradict the Newtonian-Cartesian view of the world. The model includes the older paradigm, interpenetrating it thoroughly with something approaching a “field model” (my terms) of the universe.

imagesThe combined model explains the phenomena of everyday life, of “normal” science, and of a huge and increasingly accumulating body of unexplainable data and evidence that is continually erupting out of the “new” natural sciences 408309_1764639612598_1737376259_863778_1611513471_n_thumb(in physics, chemistry, biology, astronomy, anthropology, and psychology, especially transpersonal psychology); out of the human potential phenomenon and new, experiential psychotherapeutic and growth techniques, such as Primal; out of psychedelic, consciousness, and brain (especially brain waves) research; out of a decades-long now Western fascination with and intense engagement with Eastern world-view, philosophy, and spiritual practice; and out of an equally long and parallel interest in the paranormal and the occult.

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378217_404734319589778_416746225_nThe holonomic (combined) model is explanatory and predictive. Yet it does so without having to exclude known, observable, empirically validated facts and evidence—without undeservedly casting upon them the light of nonexistence or, worse still, ignoring them, simply because their validity gives rise to a very human “uncomfortableness.” 561118_417771534949707_1862742195_nSuch data trigger a certain insecurity in that they undermine a familiar, habitual, and thoroughly ego-invested commitment to a view of reality.5 The purposes of this article do not here allow an elaboration of either the new evidence or the new paradigm that I have discussed.6 Suffice it to say that the recent and rapid emergence of the field of transpersonal psychology itself is pushed by an inability to continually disregard the evidence of our own senses that does not fit with the mechanical paradigms we were taught.

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This new evidence, which is pouring forth on the cutting edges of our modern sciences, has made the Newtonian-Cartesian paradigm as obsolete as the flat earth one.  

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Continue with Why We Know Not and A Call to Know Instead: Beyond “Flat Earth” Materialism—Scientific Awakening Is as Crucial for Paradigm Shift as is the Social and Political Awakenings

Return to How We Might Come to Know: In Tossing Away Our Species Blinders, We Relearn That Consciousness Is Infinite, Yes … but Fantastic as Well.

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Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Being Born … Playing Now, in Theaters Near You!

Projecting the Perinatal Zeitgeist: Everything You’ve Managed to Forget About Being Born

Wounded Deer and Centaurs, Chapter Two: Everything You’ve Forgotten About Birth … Projecting the Perinatal Zeitgeist

With these elements of birth experience in mind, let us look at some of the forces and elements, unprecedented and otherwise, that characterize twenty-first century life.

Baby and Fetal Projections on the Silver Screen

Fetus in the Sky with Diamonds … And Oh, the Shark Has Pretty Teeth, Dear…

clip_image003_thumbIn these strange days, movies, TV shows, and books are rife with perinatal themes: From the famous ending image of the movie “2001,” where the fetus is pictured against the blackness of space as a newborn star…to some of the most popular and lucrative movies of all time — ”Jaws,” for example, with its huge vagina dentata shark mouth lurking in the depths of the unconscious (the ocean), signifying the trauma we have around the mother’s vagina, the mouth ringed with teeth—the ferocious looking teeth symbolizing the pain and death elements of birth experience.

Other examples of perinatal imagery in the media include those in the movie Brazil”—the main character being haunted by hordes of infant/fetal faces in particular; “The Abyss”; “Jacob’s Ladder,” and “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”—large-headed fetal looking aliens again.

ET, Phone Mom!

Psychodynamic as well as perinatal sequences are displayed in “The Wall” and “Brainstorm.” There is the fascinating womb and fetal symbolism in UFO movies like “Cocoon”; “Cocoon: The Return!”; and “E.T.”—with the fetal-looking alien wanting to “phone home.” And of course, we have seen obvious perinatal symbolism in “Independence Day,” “Fire in the Sky,” “Jacob’s Ladder,” “Joe Vs. The Volcano,” “Nothing But Trouble”; and in a recurring way on weekly TV series The X Files, Star Trek, Heroes, and The 4400, among many others.

“Avatar” is a near perfect depiction of a BPM I state that is interrupted by the later stages of pregnancy and threatened by a mechanized-technological birth. Everything is there as in the womb state: a perfect harmony with Nature…a world tree symbolizing the life-giving placenta…harmony with the Mother, who is the World Mother, a Goddess.

In the Narnia series, the children find a “secret” doorway at the back of a wardrobe (womb symbol) and go from their normal realm into another magical realm. In thisas in many other depictions, such as “Alice in Wonderland,” “The Matrix,” and “The Wizard of Oz”we can see both a re-creation of the birth sequence but also the message (from our unconscious selves) that one needs to go back through and re-experience that sequence, as it was left incomplete.