The Purpose of Creation

 

Science is not concerned with the purpose of creation. Religion is. Science focuses its attention on the “how” rather than on the more philosophical question of “why.” This is simply an extension and outcome of science’s interest in facts and religion’s interest in values.

Science does indeed recognize that people live by values, but values are subjective choices and do not have an objective existence outside of us (like the moon has). Therefore, values are not a proper subject for scientific investigation. In spite of this, I am going to propose in my next book, Proving God, that values DO have an objective existence outside of us – starting with the idea that Love is the ultimate substance of the universe (substantia prima).

Allow me to give you a small “taste” of where my labors are headed concerning the how and why of creation and evolution. To start, it will be profitable to share with you a very, very, simple overview of the various scientific and theological camps along with their contentious views.

Evolutionary Science (the neo-Darwinian synthesis) embraces natural selection. Simply put, mutational variation within evolutionary biology has physical causes rather than Divine causes. This theory’s greatest challenge is that the fossil evidence does not do an adequate job of demonstrating the principle of gradualism. Often the fossil record shows distinct “jumps” of accelerated speciation (punctuated equilibrium).

In Creationism, we are given a totally theological answer for evolution. The laws of the universe have emerged from God’s Holy Word. Humans are viewed as a distinctly unique creation from other creatures – with an important role to play in the drama of the cosmos. While Creationists do not have an answer for the mechanism by which God creates all the richness of the manifest universe, they point out that no one has ever witnessed one species transforming into another distinct species (macroevolution).

Intelligent Design allows for purposiveness (teleology) to be used as an explanatory tool for explaining the emergence of bio-complexity in nature. Unfortunately, it leads us to an intellectual dead end in not being able to enlighten us to the wisdom of God’s grand scheme. For instance, detractors will ask why evolution must be so wasteful in order just to bring forth the human species, a species whose actions are threatening the globe? While Intelligent Design sees itself as a scientific approach, most scientists feel it uses bad science.

Theistic Evolution believes in both natural selection (good science) and that God is the Creator and Maintainer of the universe (good theology). It has serious problems in trying to marry the concept of purposeful creation with the blind and non-intelligent mechanism of natural selection. Somehow, God is able to hide His activity within the scientific framework of randomness.

I would like to propose another concept which I believe straddles the “how” and “why” of creation. I call it CONJUNCTIVE DESIGN, which is based on the scientific and theological writings of Emanuel Swedenborg. Swedenborg put forth the idea that a God of love must create a world because Divine Love needs a subject to love (something other than itself). Evolution is also necessary to creation because for Love to find perfection and fullness, it must be reciprocal. In other words, a creature has to emerge with the appropriate higher-order complexity to recognize a Creator and love God back. Love cannot be one-sided.

God creates only by conjunction, and, can only have conjunction through self-representation. In other words, the Lord’s love and truth can only flow into, and have relationship with, forms that in some way mirror the Divine nature. Therefore, all created things are created for their usefulness and utility – which is an expression of love. Intelligent design misses this theological point. (I will address the theodicy issue and evil in the world in another post.)

The reason why science and theology can be unified is that evolution is spiritual. The engine of adaptation is not from the strategies of “selfish” genes to ensure survival from the ever-changing external pressures of a given physical environment. Humans have evolved to exploit a more rarefied niche – information. This includes becoming receptive to religious values – which have their objective existence in God’s eternal Being.

Evolution is the exaltation of love (through more complex and noble forms of usefulness). The Lord’s conjunction with the universe is perfected through His covenant with humankind, especially when humans adopt the tenet of loving the neighbor as the guiding principle for their industriousness.

Religion is God’s strategy to extend the evolution of the biosphere into a non-material realm (we call this realm heaven). The directionality of evolution has been towards the spiritual world, because as God’s principle of love descends more perfectly into matter and physical complexity, utility ascends and becomes more spiritual. The ultimate purpose of creation and evolution is to form a heaven from the human race – the only species whose utility can evolve to actions of conscious love. It is through conjunction with God that we can have a blessed and eternal life.

Do you believe we are more than our genes?

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The New Jerusalem And Its Metaphysical Light

 

I have been maintaining through my various posts that Sacred Scripture contains a quantum vocabulary within the literal meaning of its narratives. As further evidence, I offer you the following “strange” verse concerning the Holy City, the New Jerusalem:

And the city hath no need of the sun and of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God did lighten it, and the lamp thereof is the Lamb. (Rev. 21:23)

Scripture then goes on to say “And the nations which are saved will walk in the light of it,” (21:24) also that, “the gates of it shall not be shut by day, for there shall be no night there” (21:25).

The above passage makes no sense when considered from the merely natural or material comprehension of the human habitual mind. We have a situation here where there will be no physical light source yet the Holy City will never be in darkness. How can this be? How would one improve his or her navigational skills in a busy urban setting without the electromagnetic influence of the sun’s rays?

On reflection, we can easily ascertain for ourselves that we can avoid obstacles and problems not just by ocular vision but also from the mind’s ability (the mind’s eye) to visualize certain unfavorable outcomes. Eyesight lets us see physical objects but understanding lets us “see” concepts and evaluate them.

The human understanding does not need physical light to operate. It is this inner and deeper capacity of seeing things within the human mind that God’s Revelation is directed at. All enlightenment deals with matters of truth. God’s Truth is metaphysical light. This is why the Lord makes two appearances. First He appears in natural light and in a physical body, then, He appears in metaphysical light, by opening our understanding to the deeper levels of truth within Scripture. This new spiritual light will shine through from the Lord’s Word as we begin to recognize the deeper, quantum vocabulary of its narratives.

This quantum vocabulary provides the answer to the strange idea that the New Jerusalem will not need a sun or moon yet it will never be in darkness. Understood from its elevated meaning, the Holy City is the Lord’s new “construction” project within our inner being.

The New Jerusalem represents a new spiritual doctrine, which will take the shape of a new “cosmopolitan” framework and dwelling place in the human psyche and spirit. This doctrine will replace the current fabricated dogma about the destruction of the physical world and its eschatological replacement. The Second Coming is a paradigm shift that is to take place in the human heart and mind. This is how the Lord will make “all things anew.”

Would you agree that a powerful inner change could change how you view everything in the physical universe?

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Lent, Fasting, And The Hierarchy Of Love

Growing up in a world of different religions has taught me that God tailors religion to the particular psyche and bent of various people. However, I instinctively felt that at the core of each religion there was a similar universal principle – loving God and loving others as yourself.

We can find the principle of Love in all religions, yet humans strangely miss this point when they become intolerant of various faith-systems. I have made it a point in my life to identify similar strategies for spiritual growth in all religions – like fasting and sacrifice.

Some form of fasting and sacrifice not only can be found in all religions but it demonstrates that all religions understand that inner growth and salvation involves targeting the human heart. Intellectual knowledge changes nothing unless it can change what we LOVE and intend. When we are fasting for instance, we are sacrificing physical pleasure for a higher ideal. Fasting involves the sacrificing of one level of love (natural appetite) for a more evolved level of love (spiritual appetite).

To better understand the dynamics of personal transformation, the various distinct qualities of love that make up the full spectrum of human experience needs to be articulated. So I provide you with an easy-to-grasp list below:

1) Corporeal Love (love of the world and physical pleasure)
2) Sensual/Imaginative Love (love of wealth and riches)
3) Intellectual Self-Love (love of power)
4) Love for Civility (rationality)
5) Love of the Neighbor (spiritual rationality)
6) Love of God (all-inclusive love)

The above list of “loves” is not some arbitrary order. As evidence, those who seek wealth will gladly sacrifice physical pleasure to achieve it (because corporeal pleasure is recognized as an inferior love to acquiring the nicer things in life). Similarly, those who seek personal or political power will gladly sacrifice riches and wealth to achieve it. Those who wish to be civil will freely choose to give up personal power and self-importance to achieve ethical and moral standards (the beginning of rationality involves seeing the bigger picture). True love of the neighbor involves moving beyond civil responsibility and helping others from a more elevated principle of spiritual love, which is the beginning of wisdom. And Loving God is the most inclusive love of all because it also requires loving all things in God’s universe.

Religion understands what neuroscience is gradually coming to acknowledge – that emotions (derivatives of love) focus our attention and ultimately forge the information in our memory into our personal paradigms, world-views, and faith-systems. What we love most, takes the highest position in our inner reality, and from that vantage point, governs all our cognitive functions like a king on a throne.

Our Ruling Love (what floats our boat) is what we perpetually seek, in this world and in the next. The true purpose of religion is to provide a roadmap by which our Ruling Love can evolve and transcend our biological selves. Religion has our eternal welfare in mind, and, constantly reminds us that we are spiritual beings.

Can you think of yourself as being different from what you love?

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Physics And The Easter Miracle

The Lord’s resurrection on what is now celebrated as Easter Sunday certainly challenges our modern assumptions about physics. Not only did this miraculous event require radical reverse entropy (the reversal of disorder and decomposition), the Lord’s restored physical body seemed to have also gained new capacities. For instance, the Lord could completely disappear from the tomb and reappear before Mary Magdalene. His physical body could ascend to heaven and descend back to earth. He could suddenly be present in a room with shut doors as well as be physically touched by His disciples and even eat fish.

Did the resurrection event require God to suspend the laws of nature or make use of laws that were already in place? If it is the latter, which I am proposing, then new and richer scientific concepts are required for unveiling the hidden nature of reality. If the natural world is not the ultimate reality then it must be a lawful expression of some greater dynamic.

Some serious scientists, whom I have studied and become acquainted with, feel that the answer to the Easter miracle may have something to do with quantum physics. Quantum physics does seem to be tied to “consciousness,” however, its uncertainty principle offers us very little information about how an all-knowing Creator does things. In fact, quantum physics needs to be reformulated. If science and theology are to be united, Divine action in the world should show that nature’s laws are consistent with God’s nature, which is Infinite Love. And, Divine action is certainly purposeful.

Like Einstein and David Bohm, I reject ontological indeterminism. Rather than fundamental reality consisting of irreducible chance, there is irreducible love. The reason for this faith-based thesis is that quantum behavior, while it seems to us to be random, generates the regularity we see in the classical world of Newtonian physics. Randomness is at odds with nature’s compulsion for self-organization. The wave function and its superposition principle do not explain how outcomes of measurement (actualization) lead to an orchestrated universe.

Love offers us a principle for potential actualization that is every bit as legitimate as randomness (which I tackle in my next book, Proving God).

We live in a world that is ordered, has orientation, and is unified. Since the essence of love is to unite, I have maintained that love is the creative causal principle and formative substance (substantia prima) of creation and the ultimate science. The world is unified through shared utility. For something to exist, previous things must coexist. And coexistence emerges from mutual support and interdependence.

All self-organization finds its existence in some form of utility, which is an analog of altruism and spiritual love. A God of love cannot create anything that is not ultimately useful. What this means is that higher causal levels of order and activity (like conscious love) adapt the lower level forms of nature to their own disposition (emergence of complexity). The scientist/theologian, Emanuel Swedenborg, called this top-down self-similarity the science of correspondences.

The closest idea to Swedenborg’s science of correspondences I have found in modern thinking is the concept of supervenience, whereby higher leveled phenomena, like ethics, morality, and altruism influence the lower level properties of nature and biological structure. The unity of nature is a causal consequence of Divine Love.

The science of correspondences implies that the laws of nature are, in fact, an extension of spiritual laws and forces into the constraints of spacetime. This means that the universe and its laws are perfectly fine-tuned for the Easter resurrection to occur.

God’s heavenly spirit supervened into a human body provided by the virgin birth, where it reached its ultimate actualization in the measurement outcomes of the Lord’s life of fulfilling Scripture on earth. Making the Word “flesh” was a lawful process by which higher-level realities and lower-level realities became perfectly united. Put into scientific terms, the a-temporal and a-spatial dynamics of the hidden microworld became fully expressed in the Lord’s macro bio-structure or physical body. So “quantum tunneling” through the shut doors of the room where the disciples had gathered after the crucifixion was no problem for the Lord’s resurrected body.

Do you think science and theology can be unified? Would that strengthen your faith?

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You can’t fool your cerebellum

cerebellumModern science does not know very much about the cerebellum. As a result, most of today’s brain research involves the cerebrum and its neural connections.

Only Emanuel Swedenborg and George Gurdjieff offered profound insights into the mysterious workings of this unique brain organ.

According to Swedenborg, the cerebrum (our voluntary) is oriented to the outer terrestrial world of the senses, but the cerebellum (involuntary) is focused on all the inner states of the cerebrum—its intentions, passions and affections. In other words, the cerebellum is wired to watch over our inner (psycho-spiritual) world.

Why? Because it is responsible for maintaining equilibrium and stability between our organic processes and our passions—otherwise, our individuality would become completely torn apart.

Also, the influences picked up by the cerebellum go into forming sperm in males and ovum in females. So as Gurdjieff once told a follower, John Bennett, the cerebellum also gets rid of any superfluous ideas that are not kindred with, or corresponding to, a person’s true passions. This is an important stage (called the “harnel-aoot” by Gurdjieff) in which we must become vigilant over our wishes—before they can automatically enter (unchallenged) our reproductive and generative processes.

This also means that a male’s sperm and female’s ovum becomes inwardly changed during genuine spiritual transformation. All process (good or bad) produces a corresponding bio-affect (leading to something taking actual form).

In heaven, these bio-affects determine which males and females will make the best eternal partners. (Sorry, but political correctness does not trump these universal laws!)

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