First Principles in expressions

Physicists seek to discover first principles of the manifest universe. Why? These principles, if identified, would reflect the fundamental nature of reality and represent the origins of natural law and process.

Relativity theory takes us to an essential singularity where matter is crushed into a point of infinite curvature and gravity—which produced the Big Bang.

Quantum theory takes us to a state where the universe exists as a non-local foamy cloud of mere “tendencies to exist.”

String theory takes us back to a multidimensional state where nothing exists but energetic strings, membranes and blobs (of something or other).

Religion teaches that fundamental reality takes us to an Infinite God.

Scientist/theologian Emanuel Swedenborg supported the latter, but applied scientific reasoning to his theistic position. Like some of today’s cutting edge thinkers he anticipated that the concept of causality could have its basis in a reality freed-up from involvement with time and locality. Swedenborg’s model of reality embraced a dynamical nexus between Divine (God’s) order and temporal order. In this model, various states of God’s love flow into (descend) into boundary conditions with increased constraints until finally finding expression in the spatio-temporal arena.

This means that the physical universe and its laws must be expressions or analogs of spiritual laws and God’s essential character. Swedenborg called these causal links between God and physical nature the science of correspondences.

To give you a simple example of this top-down causal relationship between spiritual (non-local) and physical terms, we can look at our mundane everyday expressions and language. The word “seeing” has its mental analog in the word “understanding” which in turn has its Divine analog in God’s Infinite “foresight” and “providence.” In each case the expression is self-similar (corresponds) but becomes less local and physical and more universal as it moves up the hierarchical ladder. This self-similarity allows linkage for God to act in the world. In a top-down causal scheme of reality, all God’s qualities represent first principles—and that which is responsible for the patterning principles and dynamics of the whole multi-tiered system that follows.

Heaven’s angels live in a non-physical realm and are cognitive of the first principles that are contained within all human expression. Every idea or concept that comes to an angelic being’s perception is immediately transformed into its “higher” equivalent or corresponding mental and spiritual quality.

The significance of this is that angels (and specially enlightened humans) perceive deeper levels of meaning within the narratives of Holy Scripture. According to Swedenborg, not only were angels able to apply new degrees of freedom to language but from this loftier viewpoint they could also identify patterns of lawful process and order within the sacred scaffolding and architecture of Scripture. In other words, God’s Holy Word could be studied as a multidimensional and scientific document with the potential of leading physicists to formulate a causal theory from a non-physical (pre-geometric but holy) matrix.

This is a game-changer!

In order to explain these ideas in greater detail, I have just completed a book entitled Proving God. It is now available on Amazon.
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The “Spiritual” Origin of Species!

Scientist/theologian Emanuel Swedenborg would blow the doors off of Charles Darwin’s foundational book on evolutionary biology The Origin of Species. Rather than approaching evolution from a materialist or naturalist position, Swedenborg’s model was both theological and scientific.

Everything in nature has order and orientation. That is why life can be classified into coherent genera and species (general and specific categories). That all life is rationally organized into orders with orientation is evidenced by the fact that life evolved towards interconnectedness, interrelatedness and interdependence. The biosphere is organized into a unified ecosystem consisting of profound relationships.

The ecosystem supports each of its species just as each species supports the whole ecosystem. This organic template is continued within each species’ internal bio-structure, where each organ and cell support the bodily system and the bodily system supports each organ and cell. In fact, all organic function is a harmonious orchestration of tasks and utility (division of labor).

Swedenborg would not only challenge the notion of natural selection, but the notion of anything physical as being foundational. He claimed that the special harmonious arrangement and endless complexity in nature was a physical analog or mirror image of a deeper reality—of God’s infinite goodness (the essence of love is to unify through cooperation and reciprocity).

God’s goodness, being infinite, comes in many, many non-material forms—all of which can be classified into real genera and species with order and orientation. Because God is ultimate life, these spiritual forms are living forms of utility seeking realization as outcomes of measurement in time and space. Nothing is created in nature unless it can represent some measurement and quantification of goodness and usefulness. God can lawfully act in the finite world because divine qualities of love can flow into and maintain forms of goodness that are oriented to an eternal plan (God can even flow into and allow evil if it can serve the divine eternal plan—but that is another topic).

According to Swedenborg, the different species of God’s goodness find and create their physical equivalence and analog in the different relationships of nature’s various and orchestrated genera and species. The appearance of the human race in nature was to serve God’s evolutionary purpose of creating a spiritual biosphere (called heaven). When an individual embraces God’s tenets and spiritual values, he or she takes the process of evolution into a non-physical realm by organizing their feelings and ideas into a nobler order (genera and species) and orientation (a heaven-bound life).

After the death of the physical body, individuals find themselves in the spiritual environment and ecosystem that they fashioned—an environment perfectly reflecting all the qualities of their heart and mind (which is one’s spiritual reality)!

If you don’t believe that there can be living organization in a non-material realm, simply contemplate the fact that human understanding is dependent on the real organization, order and orientation of one’s ideas and knowledge—this is non-physical structure and complexity! The human mind and first-person experience (consciousness) certainly is not under the same constraints as physical matter, and human memory is not limited like physical water in a certain size bottle.

This topic needs a whole book to explain. So I have done just that. I have written a new book entitled Proving God. It is just days away from being available on Amazon.

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A daring work that unifies Science and Theology
by challenging many of the world’s current beliefs about both

Proving God

You have a Soul, a Physical Body, but everything in between is up to you!

Religion is simply about how to live a heaven-bound life. And, if one humbly and sincerely loves God and the neighbor, reaching God’s heavenly kingdom of mutual love does not require one to be a neuroscientist.

So why did Emanuel Swedenborg provide so many extra details on the process of spiritual salvation? The average person who lives a life of goodness from spiritual principles does not really need such doctrinal “overkill.”

A hint comes from a statement once made by George Gurdjieff that “the more one knows, the more effective one’s efforts can be.” The purpose of religion is to change our lives to become better people. Therefore, Swedenborg offered the extra information for those who wanted to understand the actual “science” behind salvation (all process proceeds according to the laws of order).

Religion basically informs us that we have a soul and a physical body. Because we have souls, the human race can survive death and live in a spiritual realm. But what Swedenborg (and Gurdjieff) brings to the theological table is that the human soul still needs to be embodied in a way that allows an individual’s personal identity to be put into a non-physical structure and organically transferred to a different realm.

According to Swedenborg, God’s living force flows into our souls—through heaven—and down into the hearts and minds of us people living on earth. But this divine influence flows through us like water through a sieve—unless a person makes the effort to allow God’s love and truth to become “fixed” and permanent in his or her life.

Swedenborg discovered that the true human soul is even beyond the consciousness of angels. So we cannot live in such a rarified sphere after death. What happens is that the Soul creates a spiritual body inside the physical body—based on the things we LOVE and seek! In other words, instead of being the mere result of our parents’ genes (which is a genetic “crapshoot”), the spiritual body is who we really are and deserve to be!

Swedenborg claimed that a person’s blood is a physical analog of an individual’s loves, affections and passions. Not only do people have different appetites, the human digestive system extracts nutrients that bring the chemical makeup of a person’s blood into concord with their affections. He claimed individuals even extract different qualities from the atmosphere (atmospheric and ethereal salts) in our respiratory systems to further promote this concord. And finally we all draw in different kinds of knowledge from the world (including religious doctrine). From these multi-sourced “foods” the soul fashions our real spiritual body using the substances that correspond to our life choices and values (loves).

We tend to view the human mental faculty of understanding and reasoning as a cognitive function. But Swedenborg claimed that the human understanding is an organized body of knowledge that forms one’s innermost bio-complexity. In the same way the physical body consists of organs that digest and prepare food, the human understanding contains non-physical analogs of these same organs by which the spirit can digest and prepare information. Angels, and those who live in heaven, have developed spiritual bodies that can receive and digest an even nobler food or quality of information—God’s teachings and tenets.

The spiritual body develops (crystallizes) within our physical bodies as we live out and act on our chosen principles of life. When individuals leave their physical bodies behind after death, they find themselves living in the environment that most suits their spiritual bio-complexity. Those who gravitate toward heaven or toward hell have differently organized spiritual bodies. Again, the soul can only create our inner reality and spiritual body from the things we hold dearest in our hearts and minds. (If the soul did not comply with our strongest wishes our very bio-fabric would rip apart!)

I am sharing these ideas with you so that you can have a more visceral notion of the consequences of one’s behavior. My new book Proving God contains a chapter entitled “The Science of Salvation” which puts the discussion of human salvation into clear scientific language!

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A daring work that unifies Science and Theology
by challenging many of the world’s current beliefs about both

Proving God

Spiritual Technology

The human brain is often compared to a computer. Yet as much as the computer has improved over the years it still cannot match the complexity of the human brain.

While computer technology is jumping by leaps and bounds, can we also say that the human brain is making equal progress?

The human brain, unlike the computer, is a self-perfecting bio-machine. When individuals learn new things or intend new things, the brain can actually change its wiring and make new connections between neurons (brain cells) to accommodate these psychical changes.

But can the human brain advance by leaps and bounds like the computer? One of the important ways computers are advancing is that they can store more and more information on smaller and smaller materials. Brain design shows this same principle—that the most complex information takes form on the smallest scales of structure (like protein folding which is so fast and precise that it lies beyond any known classical process). Also, some neuroscientists are starting to embrace the idea that the neuron has its own nervous system and that the higher functions of human reasoning and abstract ideas takes place within these deeper neural structures (substrates).

Information does not seem to be restricted by physical size and measurement. In fact, some serious physicists suspect that all information and process (active information) has its fundamental abode in a pre-spatial and pre-geometric realm.

Scientist/theologian, Emanuel Swedenborg has already beat modern scientists to the punch. He not only created a multi-level model of human cognition, he also devised a hierarchical system of information and structure that lawfully reached all the way into the non-local and non-temporal spiritual world!

In scientific language, religion is God’s strategy to help humans tap into these deeper realms of active information. How?  The answer is LOVE!

Swedenborg claimed that love, affection and intention occupy the cockpit of human intelligence and consciousness. However, each level or substrate of human cognition is under the operational control of a different and distinct species of love. On the lowest level is corporeal love, which embraces worldly pleasure and acquires memory-data. Above this level is the love and desire to understand what the lower level knows. Higher up, is the love for reasoning about the things one understands. Above this is the love to become wise, which is the essence of spiritual love.

Religion is God’s guide and roadmap for humans to choose the better, and finally, the best values to live by. Scientifically speaking, this allows an individual to embrace a higher and more inclusive form of love that operates on deeper levels of the brain and neuron. The process of spiritual growth not only leads to new connections between neurons, but new connections between deeper and deeper substrates of the neuron, until one’s inner bio-structure evolves into a non-physical and coherent spiritual body, capable of functioning in heaven’s ecosystem.

God’s commandments are for the advancing of spiritual technology. The human heart and mind was purposely designed for these divine upgrades.

If this topic interests you, I offer further explanation and details in my soon-to-be-released book Proving God.

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A daring work that unifies Science and Theology
by challenging many of the world’s current beliefs about both

Proving God

Truth argues. Love supports.

When we argue with other people, the human brain instantly brings to mind the ideas that uphold our viewpoint. These ideas represent our “truth.” All people argue from their notion of truth. Religions argue over truths, which are their differing doctrines. Scientists argue over what theories are closest to the truth.

Love, on the other hand, is supportive for it represents the very essence of goodness.  Everyone appreciates goodness. But isn’t there some ultimate truth that can settle all arguments?

Yes! When truth leads to love then it is ultimate truth. According to scientist and theologian Emanuel Swedenborg, truth is the form by which love can be intellectually seen and understood. Let me make an analogy. In the same way physical force finds its form (embodiment) in kinetic energy (outward trajectory), love finds its form in some construct of “truth.” Truth is the informational parameter or limit for which love is tending—just like a trajectory is the parameter and limit in which a physical force is tending. Without love or physical force taking on some real form, neither can be discerned. That is why form and information are synonymous.

One might say that if knowledge must lead to love (and wisdom) it will limit the mind’s thirst for all kinds of data and information. Not really. It will only point to the incompleteness of such information.

Why do I say that? Because even a physicist will concur that the universe is unified. Therefore, all information must be interrelated, interconnected and even interdependent. In other words, all true knowledge must be supportive! Existence is relational.

Love supports (and thus unifies). So all the laws (truths) of the universe must be expressions (physical analogs) of love. This is why nature has a relentless drive towards self-organization and complexity. The scientific mystery behind the thermodynamics of gravitating systems to grow coherent structure spontaneously is solved when love is seen as the first causal principle in the universe. Love brings people together as well as atoms, quantum potentials and stars. This brings God into the equation of scientific investigation.

I have just completed a book entitled Proving God. It will be available in 6 weeks and provide lots of evidence for why love is the ultimate science and why God and science can be rationally unified.

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Are humans unique?

Well, humans certainly are unique enough to ask the question and ponder the possibility of our uniqueness. Animals could care less about such philosophizing.

I was inspired to write this post from reading The Hannibal Blog entitled “How humans are (not) unique.”

Certainly, all living creatures are unique and fulfill unique roles in Nature’s economy. Many brain researchers currently state that most of the things we believed made us psychically unique have been observed in other species—such as aggression (and murder), empathy, pleasure anticipation, the Golden Rule and Theory of Mind.

Hmmm? Theory of Mind? Really?!!

It seems that our current Theory of Mind suggests that humans possess the same facilities as other species with the only difference being an added layer of complexity.

This seems odd because my studies into neuroscience suggest there is as yet no complete theory of human cognitive architecture. However, some pioneering researchers are beginning to suspect that brain complexity goes deeper than the substrate of neural (synaptic) pathways and that the neuron itself may have its own “nervous system.”

Scientist/theologian Emanuel Swedenborg beat everybody to the punch on this important topic of brain complexity! He was the first to put forward a neuron theory (brain cells and their connections) and formulate a multi-level theory of mind. His model of mind and consciousness was based on discoveries that led him to believe that the cognitive functions of sensing, imagining, reasoning, intuition and even spiritual experience were totally discrete operations and acted within their own structures (substrates). Each structure within this scaffolding and hierarchy of human consciousness possessed its own unique geometrical principle by which constraints of action were lawfully removed so that new powers of abstraction could be obtained from the sensory data of the circumfluent universe.

The difference between the complexity of animal minds and human minds is not continuous but discrete. In humans, there is no finite ratio between seeing physical objects, seeing mental ideas, and seeing (recognizing) “truth.” These distinct cognitive functions operate in different layers of the brain and neuron.

My upcoming book Proving God spends two chapters covering these new geometrical powers and the discrete qualities of different human cognitive functions, which rely on these forms (classical and non classical) of bio-structure.

Love: The Science Of The Future!

Scientists who embrace a materialistic philosophy cannot conceive of how the topic of LOVE could ever be considered an exact science, like physics, chemistry, astronomy or biology. In fact, church-going scientists would have serious doubts as well. After all, Love is not something that can be studied like matter, even though Love’s importance to our lives may get everyone’s confirming head nod.

Love is what separates a human being from a robot with artificial intelligence. It is not simply a matter of intelligence. Remove human affection and feeling from speech and you get the monotone sounds of an automaton.

Only recently have neuroscientists begun to suspect that emotion and feelings (derivatives of love) operate the cockpit of the human intellect. What we love (embrace) focuses our attention, introduces sensory data to the brain’s memory and more importantly, organizes the material and sensory data of the memory into a coherent system with real order and orientation. Human understanding relies on a person’s ability to put knowledge into some organized structure. The result of this psychical process to grow coherent structure spontaneously is a person’s worldview or value system. How we act in the physical world is determined by our value system. We value what we love.

Evidence that love is substantial and assists causal process is the fact that the quality of one’s love determines the living complexity of his or her worldview. A love of worldly things organizes the mind to value physical or bodily pleasure. A love of knowledge organizes the mind to seek and find pleasure in mental activity. Obtaining wisdom comes from a deeper spiritual love from the study of God’s tenets. This nobler love disposes information in the human memory to value putting others and God before self.

More and more scientists are coming to the conclusion that existence is relational. Nothing exists unless it consists of co-existing things from within and can co-exist with things from without. Nothing exists from itself (called the contingency argument). That is why the universe is unified.

The essence of Love is to unite.

I have written a new book Proving God, which demonstrates that Love must be an ontologically real primary causal force perpetually directing creation and evolution. I could go on and on but it is that time of year to lighten up and share more “lovable” information. So for those of you who would like to approach Love and Valentine’s Day from the customary tradition of romance, perhaps I can offer you a truly spiritual appreciation of giving gifts (candy), cards and flowers to those close to your heart.

Valentine cards represent communication and intimate connection between two souls. Giving candy symbolizes the sweetness of the relationship (love is indeed sweet). Giving flowers represents the beauty of anticipating a continued fruitful relationship and the “harvest” of shared love, since flowers precede the production of seeds and fruit, which represent all the useful things predicated from the quality of an individual’s love and sincere goodness.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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