The concept that there might be an attribute as non-physical as information or wisdom at the heart of existence in no way denigrates the physical aspects of our lives. Denial of the pleasures and wonder of our bodies is a sad misreading of the nature of existence. The accomplishments of a science based on materialism have given us physical comforts, invented life-saving medicines, sent people to the moon. The oft-quoted statement, "not by bread alone does a human live" (Deuteronomy 8:3), lets us know that there are two crucial aspects to our lives, one of which is bread, physical satisfaction. The other parameter is an underlying universal wisdom. There's no competition here between a metaphysical spirituality and the material. The two are complementary, as in the concept 'to complete.'
When we see through the camouflage haze that at times convinces us that only the material exists and we touch that consciousness, we know it. A joyful rush of emotion sweeps over the entire self. It's telling us that we've come home. We've discovered the essence of being. Everyone has felt it at some time or other. Perhaps at a brilliant sunrise, in a work of art, the words of a lover. The physical and the metaphysical join.
If we dared, we'd call the experience spiritual, even Godly. But there's a reluctance to use the "G" word. "Listen to the Force" is acceptable on the great silver screen. Had Star Wars said "Listen to God," the theater would have emptied in a flash. The reluctance is not surprising considering the bizarre claims erroneously attributed to God through the ages and especially in our age. Fortunately, most of those claims are based on the expectations for the putative God of the Bible that we learned as children. Obviously, when our child-level wisdom is evaluated by our adult minds, that wisdom is bound to seem naive. For many, it comes as a surprise that there is far more sophistication to the metaphysical than that which we learned as youngsters.
The age-old theological view of the universe is that all existence is the manifestation of a transcendent wisdom, with a universal consciousness being its manifestation. If I substitute the word information for wisdom, theology begins to sound like quantum physics. We may be witnessing the scientific confluence of the physical with the spiritual. ?
We are, each of us, a part the universe seeking itself. We struggle between a world that seems totally material and the emotional, even spiritual, pull we all feel at times. To relegate, a priori, those feelings of love and joy and spirituality to some assumed function of our ancestors' evolutionary drive for survival masks the greatest pleasures in life, the experiential realization of the metaphysical.
In the following pages, as we journey through the newly discovered marvels of the cosmos, of life and finally of the brain/mind interface, I ask only that, as you read, you use these facts to re-examine your opinions concerning the origins of this wonderful world in which we live.
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|Author||Gerald L. Schroeder|