By Frank Conerton
With the New Age expanding consciousness, we need new thoughts and ideas to be able to express the new and greater levels of understanding. We need to let go of the old Newtonian ideas of a mechanical, machine-like universe, with the hard separations between spirit, mind and matter. There are other ideas, such as an unfolding, symbiotic universe, which has flexibility to allow greater expression.
In the unfolding universe, spirit unfolded to mind and energy. Mind and energy became matter. As matter became more complex, more possibilities became manifest, including life. As life became more complex, awareness became possible.
Our problem is that the scientific, Newtonian view of inert matter feels intuitive. If you kick a boulder or fall off a cliff, the results are predictable. The rock feels very, very, solid and hard; not at all as if the rock is 99.9% empty space, which atomic theory claims. Since most of us accept atomic theory, we need to reach a higher level of conscious understanding where we can accept that rock is solid and hard, and that the same rock is also 99.9% empty space. We accept that although our senses say this is hard, science says that beyond the level of our senses the rock is 99.9%. Both science and our senses are correct within their own realm.
Another example of accepting a higher level of understanding is Euclidian geometry, which most of us studied in school, and experience in almost every building which we see. This is the geometry of a point, line and plane. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line is an axiom in Euclidian space. A problem arises, however, when an airplane flies long distances. The shortest distance between New York and London is available in two different arcs that lie along the curvature of the Earth. No straight line flights are possible over the curve of the Earth. Since that eliminates a basic axiom of Euclidean geometry, other geometries were developed. That does not mean that Euclidean geometry is false. We use Euclidean geometry successfully in most buildings and land surveying. But when we deal with the curve of the Earth, non-Euclidean geometry is needed.
Can we accept that matter, life and mind may appear as separate things to our senses and intuition, but they may be closely related at another level? Just as atomic physics and non-Euclidean geometry are valid in realms beyond our senses, other philosophies speculate that consciousness and energy are the basis of our world, and as such, matter and life and mind may all be inter-related. Instead of a creation of solid, inert matter, followed by the addition of life, followed by the addition of mind and spirit, we can say that consciousness and energy developed vibrations which became particles which became atoms which became matter. Matter then continued to evolve into more complex forms until life emerge. Life evolved and became more complex until mind evolved, all from the original consciousness and energy.
If we ask the questions “Why are we alive?” and “What is our purpose?”, the answers are very different if we accept Newtonian physics or if we accept this unfolding and evolving process. The Newtonian model requires an external source for matter, for life and for consciousness. Some may say that God created man to rule the Earth with his superior intelligence.
If we accept the unfolding, symbiotic universe of consciousness and energy, we can say that human life is as natural as every other form of life on Earth. The book of nature is all we need to study.
In the Natural World, all life forms create new possibilities for more life, just by living. Every plant and animal, by living and dying, nurtures and enhances the network of life. No greater justification is needed for any life than that it supports the network of life. Since human life is just another life form, we too are justified just by living. Human beings are as natural as any other living thing on the planet. We are a manifestation of this planetary evolution.
“What is my purpose?” is simply answered “To live on Earth.” “How do we do that?” is another question for another day.