Friday, November 18, 2011

On consciousness...

I have been going through old shows of Coast-to-Coast AM and found an especially interesting one from the beginning of this month.
The program was on the subject of consciousness and reality.  The guests were Dr. Vernon Neppe and Dr. Edward Close.  Their work entails bringing psychology, science, mathematics, and philosophy together into one broader paradigm.  Okay, I like where this is going so far.
One of the resultant conclusions is that consciousness must precede reality.  I take that to mean that reality is entirely dependent upon consciousness perceiving it.  To paraphrase Ray Bradbury: "what good is a universe without an audience to wonder in awe of it?"  Consciousness, it would appear, is reality's audience.  Or perhaps from a certain point of view, consciousness produces the show and then wonders in awe...or shrieks in terror.   But I digress...

One interesting point that Neppe and Close made was that there their way of thinking...three different levels of consciousness.  Those are neurological, psychological, and a meta-consciousness or an awareness that gathers information from multiple sources.  This last level implies that consciousness can and does exist outside of the brain.  A "soul," one might say.  I find this fascinating because all religious or spiritual bickering aside, I have always believed that human beings and most other animals for that matter are far more than the sum of their parts.  The un-fingerable "it" in the equation might be consciousness.  Yes, I do believe that there are non-human forms of intelligence all over our world, such as whales, dolphins, apes, dogs, and the list goes on.  Again, I digress...
Neppe takes it a step further:

"In our model, we cogently argue that time is not just one linear dimension that goes past, present, future, but that there are several different dimensions of time," and all of existence could be said to exist at the same time because "we have an extended amount of time that always is, was, and will exist."

Wow.  They went on to discuss their theory that are a total of ten dimensions existing simultaneously and that human beings inhabit them all at once.  This brings new meaning to the phrase "other states of consciousness."  Lastly, Neppe made one key point: "The universe itself is conscious and intelligent and has an innate order to it."

That statement is critical.  I believe that it gets at what a great many people term as "God."  The universe is energy.  From the stars burning nuclear fuel to the minor levels of electrical current in our bodies.  It's all energy and we are linked in with it  Consciousness itself might be a form of energy, an omnibus of our accumulated knowledge and experience and perhaps even things we aren't aware that we know yet.  The "unknown knowns" as Donald Rumsfield might say.  Oh I could keep going but I need meditate and reflect on all of this first.  So fascinating...

You can find Dr. Neppe's web site here and Dr. Close's web site here.

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