Tag: God

Through the Looking Glass

For any perceptual entity A and his contextual reality B, there exists some relationship C which maps circumstances of reality B to qualia in entity A. There also exists a modality D by which entity A assimilates qualia into a coherent framework. Given that A is not omniscient, there must be some mapping between reality and his perceptions that affords him contextuality/limitation in perception. This same mapping must determine what reality “looks like” for A. It stands to reason that another being, perhaps a larger one, may see the “same” information that we see, from a not only expanded, but wholly different in modality, point of view.

Analogously, consider a human watching a caterpillar makes its way across the ground. The caterpillar has no overall sense of the landscape he’s traversing. He doesn’t even have a sense of what such a sense would “be like.” He doesn’t necessarily know the bladiness of blades of grass. At least he necessarily doesn’t know it in the same way we do. He doesn’t know the blackness of dirt or doesn’t in the way we do. The same for the greenness of grass or the blueness of the sky or the wetness of water. He doesn’t even know what he himself looks like, nor that he hatched from an egg. If we toss him through the air, we may synoptically understand, or at least recognize, the elliptical arc that he follows due to the principles of physics and gravity, but he has no such experience.

It stands to reason then, that if we were to sufficiently expand our own consciousness, we may experience the same events in a completely different manner. Our whole way of perceiving reality is therefore seemingly arbitrary. This is no surprise, of course, given a little bit of study into our own sense organs. Perhaps there is a punctuated equilibrium of subjective experience, whereby when your consciousness’ perception expands beyond a certain point, it completely changes modes. Or would it be gradual? Is it one way or another according to the type of subject? Maybe this “punctuated equilibrium” theory of perception is only really pertinent to the tree of biological evolution, being that it itself follows a pattern of punctuated equilibrium?

If you believe in If you believe in group consciousness, does a species itself have a point of view? Does graduating from one perspectival mode to another mean disbanding with one group consciousness and banding with another?

Is the mode of perception that a disembodied conscious observer–or a species–settles on determined by “lowest energy” (within the context of factors of natural selection), similarly to the end state of a folding protein or the direction of a river?

Does this all mean that in one way or another, Plato’s cave analogy always applies? 

Additionally, if you believe in such things, perhaps this is the reason avatar Meher Baba worshipped the “masts” (pronounced “musts”), whom he said are like his eyes and his ears, and whom, by his own admission, he has lived for. Perhaps, all possible modalities of perception being on equal footing, without using individual consciousnesses as frames of reference, God really can’t experience “what’s going on in the universe.” Maybe we are all God’s eyes and ears.

Evidence and God

Lots of people ask for “evidence” that a creator exists.  “If a creator exists, why didn’t he leave evidence?”, one says.

But to ask for evidence in the form of an anomaly is to ask that the creator provides evidence for himself by creating something that contradicts the truth of what has actually been created.  It seems that such a person requires two contradictory truths in order to verify that a creator exists—for example, a reality that operates in a way that implies that a lifeless statue of the virgin Mary would not emit tears, juxtaposed to said statue having tears.  Or a world with physics that would be violated by a great booming voice coming from the heavens, vis a vis said voice manifesting.  Or the abstract idealization of a human form, divorced from the physical truth of what engenders a human form, and presented in some way thus contradictory to the truth of being a human, such as an angel in the form of a flying translucent human with wings, or a bright shining Jesus descending from the sky.

In any case, any asking for an anomaly to evidence a creator is asking for a hierarchy of truths, in order of ubiquity, in which one of these truths contradicts another one of these truths, or is at least asking for a cogent system of truth (such as natural process) followed by an unaccountable fact, particularly a fact in the form of a synthesis of two or more human abstracts, manifested physically, that is a strikingly unnatural or irrational synthesis; for example: “ceaseless” + ”burning” + ”a bush”; ”a voice” + ”having no source”; “a person rises” + ”he’d been dead for three days”; or “a statue” (i.e. “a human” + “artificial”) + “weeping.” I’m highlighting the fact these concepts are ultimately syntheses of human abstractions because they’re unrealistic, and unrealistic things can only be human abstractions.

Perhaps for some, the only thing inspiring or mysterious enough to suggest a creator is the irrational. That’s not to suggest that everything else in reality is rationally explainable—I would disagree with such a worldview—but that evidence of a creator must contradict reason. If everything that already exists is already evidence of God, then I don’t see that a creator would have an obligation to—nor a natural tendency to—leave further evidence that contradicts this evidence. That of course leaves open the question of whether everything that exists is evidence, but just as there is no reason to assume that it is evidence, there is no reason to assume that it is not evidence.

Perhaps those who would require the irrational as evidence of God are simply looking for something new.  We have a tendency of “taking for granted” anything we are very familiar with. We don’t have to remotely understand it, it may even be a wonderful thing, but as long as we have familiarity with it, it’s just “a part of reality,” or even when it’s new, it’s just a part of reality in that it doesn’t blatantly contradict something else in reality, so regardless of the mystery or the glory of many arguably sublime things, such as, say, love, it’s not evidence of a creator because it’s just a part of life. Admittedly, the issue of the implicatory relationships between the concept of a creator and the concept of—for example—love is analytically endless, but a concept of a creator that requires evidence that contradicts natural law is a wrong characterization of God, and it’s hard to imagine what could exist in real life that is a more potent indicator than some of the things that already exists that is not contradictory to natural law.

Any evidence for Christian creationism would contradict natural law.

Some examples of potent indicators of a creator in normal life include existence, life/consciousness, love, compassion, laughter, joy, happiness, art, creativity, peace, order, psi, rainbows, and the general beauty of nature. (I am not saying these examples do necessarily prove the existence of God or a creator, but that that they’re the most potent possible indicators that could exist outside of that which would contradict natural law, and they actually do exist.)

Some things that, if actually deeply and properly understood, would necessarily entail or lead one to more awareness of the spiritual and metaphysical (including God) are these: art; aesthetics; the beauty of the human form and other animals; body language; what makes us laugh; personalities; quantum randomness; and words/language. (The mechanics of how words come into being and become popular, i.e. memetics, operate over the full spectrum of consciousness and awareness, including that which is only subconsciously realized, and that extends well beyond the consciously acknowledged and even the rational. I wrote more about this here: https://philosophy.inhahe.com/2017/02/16/on-the-meanings-of-words/)

Attempts to fully explain any the above things without appealing to anything spiritual are attempts to “explain them away,” as such. “How gibbering man becomes, when he is really clever, and thinks he is giving the ultimate and final description of the universe!  Can’t he see that he is merely describing himself, and that the self he is describing is merely one of the more dead and dreary states that man can exist in?” -D. H. Lawrence.

Conclusion: In this particular case—the case of the existence of God—the lack of evidence (or supposed lack of evidence) is not evidence of lack.

All of the above is just an idea I had that I’m sharing for what it’s worth, though. To be fair, if material reality is a “lower” grade of existence, then perhaps, once In a while, for the good of everything, some of the “higher” grade of existence can “leak in” and cause what we call “a miracle.” (Related: https://philosophy.inhahe.com/2017/02/15/on-the-term-supernatural/.) I do believe, for example, that medical miracles have occurred and there is documentation to prove it. I don’t know if they imply that God “intervenes,” per se; maybe they only evince the power of creation we have in each of us.