The scientific community was abuzz in July about the discovery of evidence in support of the existence, however brief, of something called a 'Higgs Boson.' This evidence emerged from the 'CERN' particle accelerator which is capable of flinging subatomic particles at enormous speeds along a seventeen mile track and then colliding them, one with the other. Scientists at the CERN are able to record every millisecond of these collisions and see the traces of particles as they radiate outward from this explosion. The evidence indicating the momentary presence of the Higgs, is a pattern of electrons appearing one tiny, tiny millisecond after one of these explosions, suggesting that there is a large particle at the center of this accumulation of electrons. This is especially gratifying to the scientific community because it portends to give an explanation for the origin of mass. The standard theory at this point had offered explanations for the formation of a whole variety of subatomic particles, but could not explain how some of these acquired mass and some did not.
To explain the origin of mass, particle physicist Thomas Higgs postulates a Higgs field which is an unobservable field of energy which pervades the universe and which collided with the weightless, massless particles of the Big Bang, a millisecond after they exploded out of the Big Bang and which coalesced into particles, 'Higgs Bosons,' which imparted mass to some of these previously massless particles. So part of the excitement of the scientific community is that this observation of electrons, suggestive of the existence of a Higgs Boson, gives support to this theory that gives an explanation for the origin of weight and mass in the universe.
In this post I will be proposing a completely different way of understanding this discovery. Please note that I am not refuting observations; how can you argue with an observation? I am taking issue with the context in which these observations are understood and the deductions that are made from them.
First let me say a word about the 'God' particle which is a monicker that the Higgs Boson has picked up along the way. The Higgs Boson does not explain creation. To understand creation I go not to the Bible or any holy book, but to that great spiritual sage Noah Webster. Webster's dictionary defines creation as making something from nothing. Science deals with measurable, observable reality, which for physicists is particles, or seeming particles, and waves. Science will never get to creation because creation is unobservable, since it starts with nothing. Science always starts with something, some condition of matter or energy, and attempts to explain how that something reacts with another something to produce a change. Scientists can lead us back, either in their observations or their theories, to perhaps energy that precedes matter, but they will never lead us back to nothing. In the case of the Higgs Boson we are talking about an interaction between a whole array of precisely formed massless particles colliding with a Higgs Field which coalesces into precisely the right size particles to interact with these massless particles. This of course begs the question of how did all these perfectly formed massless particles happen to be there; how did this Higgs Field which forms precisely the right size boson particles happen to be there, and what was the Big Bang anyway?
There is a bias, a deep set and almost impenetrable bias, in science to not see intelligence as a causal factor. The thinking is that if we can explain all the mechanics of the physical universe and of life, then we have eliminated the need for any notion of God or a transcendent intelligence. First of all, I will say with absolute confidence that we will never explain through any scientific system of measurement and observation, all the mechanics of either the inanimate universe or life. And that is because so much of both of these, not only in their origin but in their moment to moment activity as well, are the result of forces and intelligence which cannot be either directly measured or directly observed (the effects of some of these forces and intelligence I will mention later in this post). Yet even if we could explain everything why would that eliminate the notion of a formative intelligence? If you took a course in Apple Computers and upon completion of this course, you understood every mechanism, every mechanical detail of MacBooks, iPhones and iPads, would you then conclude from that that Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak did not exist? And Apple Products have the complexity of tiddlywinks when compared to the dazzling complexity and precision involved in the formation of the physical universe; or the growth and development of a human being from one fertilized ovum.
In these huge particle accelerators the assumption is that when we collide subatomic particles with enough impact to pulverize at least some of the particles that make up neutrons and protons, that we are recreating somewhat the conditions of the Big Bang that supposedly started the physical universe. It is unknown, and I think will remain unknown, as to whether the universe began with the Big Bang, or whether the Big Bang marked the end of a contractive cycle of the universe and the beginning of an expansive cycle, cycles that may have been repeated many, many, perhaps an infinite number of times, and each cycle taking place over many billions of years. Going back to Webster's definition of creation, as something from nothing, if the universe began with an explosion, what was it that was exploding? And whatever that was, how did that get there? Certainly, if it was an explosion, it was a very different kind of explosion than anything that is within our human experience. The physical universe is expanding, at a very fast rate. It is this expansion that is the main proof of a Big Bang Theory in the first place. The physical universe is expanding, however, on a curved plane, something like the surface of an expanding balloon. When something explodes on our planet, for instance, we can trace the path of the exploded material back to the source of the explosion, since all the material radiates out from the center, which was the site of the explosion. Yet if the entire material, physical plane is expanding equally, at the same rate, like the surface of a balloon, then you cannot trace back the site of the Big Bang on this same plane. Going back to the balloon analogy, the source of the expansion would not be on the surface of the balloon, but at the center of the balloon. So, the source of the expanding plane of the material, physical universe, since everything is expanding equally must lie not in this physical, material plane, but in another plane, a plane that is beyond or beneath our observable, physical plane. Since we have no idea what a non-physical explosion could be (what would be exploding?) then the best we can say, for the moment, is that the universe, or at least this current cycle of it, is expansive, and that this expansion began with an event that did not take place in this physical, material plane.
The interaction between the Higgs Field and the expanding massless particles sounds more like the aftermath of a bifurcation, which may or may not be caused by an explosion. A bifurcation is the splitting into two separate parts of that which was once one part. It may not have much relevance to this discussion, but it is interesting to note that the creation stories of so many ancient religions begin with a bifurcation. The Taoists believe that Infinity bifurcates into yin and yang. Many versions of the Bible start with, "In the beginning God created the Heaven and the Earth," also mentioning over and over that God is One, and considering that the earth as a planet was not created until the third 'day,' then 'Earth' in this first biblical sentence must be referring to an earth force. With this in mind, "In the beginning God created the Heaven and the Earth," and "Infinity bifurcates into yin and yang," may actually mean exactly the same thing. This bifurcation into two opposing forces which then create, between them, the universe, is repeated in the creation stories of many religions. These opposing forces are referred to as yin and yang, light and dark, In and Yo, Vata and Kapha, Tawa and Takpella, father heaven and mother earth, Shiva and Shakti, etc.
A deeper understanding of yin and yang provides a different, and I think more accurate and simpler way of understanding what is going on at Cern, and of the seeming particle that the scientists there now describe as a 'Higgs Boson.' I also understand that there are different traditions of Taoism and what I am referring to as 'yang' many people refer to as 'yin' and vice versa. These are just names and have no real relevance to this discussion. There is an expansive force, which I am calling yin, and a contractive force, which I am calling yang. All things move in a spiral (the moon circles the earth while following the earth's orbit, thereby describing a spiral; the earth circles the sun while following the sun's obit around the center of the Milk Way Galaxy, thereby describing another spiral, electrons circle the nucleus of an atom and as the atom moves the path of the electron, too, describes a spiral, etc.). A spiral is a circle moving forward. Yin force is the circular component of the spiral, or the centrifugal force, and yang force is the linear, forward component, or the centripetal force. Yin and yang cannot exist on this physical plane by themselves. Yin, by itself, would disperse at infinite speed and instantly become unobservable. Yang would contract to the point of disappearance and also leave the physical plane. It is important to note, which I will explain more later, that although yin and yang by themselves would disappear from the physical plane, they would still continue to exist, just not in a way that we can observe them directly; not in space and time.
Yin and yang combine to form our physical, material universe. Everything in our observable universe is composed of yin and yang in various combinations, and ONLY yin and yang. Yin and yang combine to form all the measurable energy and observable matter in the universe. The search for the ultimate particle, then, ends in futility. There is no real 'solid' particle; there is no real material base to the universe. At first it was thought that the basis of reality was in the solidity of objects. There it is. You can kick it, jump on it, stand on it. You can't get realer than that. Then it was discovered that this solidity was really composed of tiny atoms connected by energy fields to other tiny atoms, and although these energy fields were impermeable, the real solidity was within the tiny atom. Later it was discovered that the tiny atom was itself composed of much tinier particles called protons and neutrons separated by large distances (in relation to the size of the particles themselves) from the much tinier electron. Still later came the realization that protons and neutrons are really energy fields as well, connecting even much tinier particles like quarks, bosons, leptons and gluons, and these must provide the ultimate solidity of the physical universe. Yet even these tiniest of particles are, in turn, themselves, energy fields of yin and yang in a tight embrace. For a particle to have shape it must have a yang element holding the yin element in check so that it doesn't break the bounds of its shape and disperse; and for a particle to have dimension, it must have a yin element, which spreads out from the central yang element, and keeps the yang element from contracting into itself and disappearing.
Modern physicists talk about electro-magnetism, gravity, the strong force, the weak force, dark energy and mass. They are all various manifestations of yin and yang. Why is the strong force, which binds the various elements within the neutron and proton, so much stronger than the electro-magnetic force? It is not so much stronger. They are both the same force. It is just that in the initial bifurcation, which these huge particle accelerators recreate to a degree by smashing sub atomic particles together, yin and yang are, for the tiniest millisecond, separated. Then they combine. The way they combine is a result of a numerical distribution pattern that underlies the structure of the physical universe and that modern scientists are beginning to unravel. Not being a scientist, nor a mathematician, I will not go into these distributions any more than to say that it is a pattern that is utterly brilliant and utterly intentional, because without this complex and perfectly precise pattern, this numerical dispersion of yin and yang energy which forms all the sub-atomic particles of the nucleus and the electron cloud around the nucleus; without the utter precision of these couplings; sub-atomic particles, then atoms and the entire physical universe could not be formed.
Yin and yang knit together into these subatomic particles, so that the yin and the yang are balanced or very close to being balanced within the particle. The somewhat positively charged subatomic particles (with a small surplus of yang) are then perfectly balanced with the somewhat negatively charged particles (with a small surplus of yin) within the neutron, and balanced slightly to the positive yang side within the proton. Completing that balance is the cloud of mostly yin energy that is pulled into and then surrounds the atomic nucleus, whose particle is the electron. The protons and neutrons create and maintain a shape, which means that they have achieved a balance, or very close to a balance of yin and yang. The yin cloud that makes balance with the neutron and proton is almost all yin energy, which balances the slight positive over balance in the nucleus of the atom, but yin and yang to a much greater degree are bound together within the subatomic particles of the neutron and proton. Quarks are little bindings of yin and yang pulling and pushing against each other with enormous force; achieving stability, but within the quark, it is a highly charged, highly animated interlocking field of opposing forces. When we manage to split an atom and some or all of its subatomic particles, we release much more yang and yin energy than we see in the interplay between electrons and positively charged atoms, but that is not a different energy, it is just a lot more of it.
To say that yin and yang attract each other is too simplistic. Yang draws yin into it to make balance. Once balance is achieved, yin is no longer attracted. This is a dynamic balance. Yin still tries to expand but is held back by the yang force. Yang still tries to continue to contract but is held back by the yin force. That is why the electron cloud does not press up against the nucleus, but is suspended some distance away. The electron cloud is centrifugal; as it spins, it wants to spin off from the nucleus and head out to infinity, but it is pulled back into it's orbit by the centripedal force of the somewhat more positive balance of the nucleus. So in all particles, even the most stable, there is a dynamic tension between forces. And in all matter there are combinations of yin and yang within combinations of yin and yang, in enormously intricate patterns of bound and opposing forces. Also, strong yang attracts weaker yang, even when it is part of a balanced object. Yang seeks to become more powerful even as it seeks to contract. Like a weightlifter who seeks to get stronger by contracting his muscles, yang seeks to both get stronger, by attracting more yang to it, and seeks to contract even further. The strongest accumulation of yang energy on our planet is at the center of the earth. It pulls all smaller objects that contain yang (which would be all objects, particles and waves) to it. In turn, the yang earth's core is pulled into the more yang center of the sun and the center of our sun is pulled in toward the still stronger yang center of our galaxy.
When the particle accelerator smashes together these subatomic particles, it is done, at least at CERN, with enough force to separate within these particles some of the yin energy from the yang energy. Higgs talks about massless particles passing through a ubiquitous energy field and acquiring 'mass' as they do so. The energy field that he is talking about is the yang energy that the collision has liberated. It was locked into and emerges from the particle itself. The particles are not acquiring 'mass' as if that is something separate from energy; they are acquiring yang energy. The proof of the 'existence' of the Higgs Boson are trace elements of rings of electrons and the assumption is that there is a concrete, physical particle, within that ring. But what there is, is just yang energy, which attracts those electrons to it to make balance. There is no ubiquitous, but unobservable and unmeasurable Higgs Field that somehow coalesces into massive bosons. Mass, or the illusion of mass and weight, is caused by yang energy, which congeals rather than disperses and is pulled toward the center of the earth. In our universe yang is either all bound to yin energy within atoms, or exists in a pure state for tiny fractions of a split second after very powerful explosion such as are created in the CERN accelerator or on the surface of stars, only to almost instantaneously reform with yin energy liberated by the same explosions into new sub-atomic particles and then atoms. At the non-physical center of our universe where the Big Bang took place, pure yang exists (as it does in much smaller strength at the center of black holes) and is the central pull that impedes the expansion of the entire physical universe. This is the 'dark' energy that physicists speak of.
Also, Higgs talks about massless particles. There are no such things. A particle is considered massless when it travels at the speed of light, but the speed of light is the fastest rate that a thing can travel and still be a thing. That means, if it is a particle, or a wave that is capable of forming a particle, there must be enough yang energy there, which would create a minimal amount of congealing, contractive yang force to keep the particle or the wave from dispersing. This minimal amount of yang is what keeps the particle or wave moving at light speed rather than at infinite speed. It is also the reason that light bends toward stars and to the center of galaxies. That small amount of yang, or mass, if you prefer, is pulled toward these powerful accumulations of yang and the light waves, as they pass near big stars and the center of galaxies, abandon their straight trajectories and bend toward them. If there were no yang energy at all, if it were pure yin, it would stop being a 'thing,' stop being either a particle or a wave and move right out of space and time, moving at infinite speed which means that it would be incomprehensibly fast and absolutely still at the same time (since it would take exactly no time for it to travel the universe and return to the same point), and it would be, at the same time, both everywhere, since it would disperse at infinite speed through the entire universe, and nowhere, since it is no longer a thing and does not occupy time or space. Also, if light speed is the fastest speed that information can move linearly; in the field of pure yin, since there is no thing to impede velocity and no separation because there is no thing to separate one part from the other, information would be total and instantaneous. I'll talk more about this pure yin field later, but for now let me say that it is what we call heaven or God or the god head or cosmic consciousness, and although it defies our understanding, we can experience a bit of it, because we are part of it. We are consciousness, which is a little piece, even though consciousness is not really divisible, of this pure yin universe, and when we are able to separate ourselves, even momentarily (through prayer, through chanting, through meditation, etc.), from this material world of attraction and desires, we begin to experience, to get a taste of what it means to be a part of the boundless, unbroken oneness of Infinity.
Remember, pure yin and pure yang cannot be seen, so what is seen at CERN is the first formation of particles and waves after the separation. Electrons are seen. Light waves and electro-magnetic waves are combinations of yin and yang, but they are the smallest possible amount of yang combining with almost pure yin. The amount of yang in light and electricity is just enough to keep it together and travel at light speed. There are only particles of light (photons) and particles of electro-magnetic energy (electrons) when we observe them. It is the yang force provided by our focus, by our observation, that adds enough yang for these waves to particularize. Since our bodies and brains, all the equipment through which we experience the world, is also composed of yin and yang, it makes sense to talk of these opposing forces in terms of our own experience. When I say focus is yangizing, we can refer back to our own experience of having people focus on us. This focus brings a yang energy. If you are comfortable with it, and know what to do when people are focussed on you, then it can bring extra energy and focus to whatever it is that you are doing. If you are not prepared, and have no clear channel through which to focus that extra energy, it turns in on itself and you experience it as stage fright or anxiety and that extra, unchanneled energy interferes with whatever it is that you are trying to accomplish. Even one on one observation, or eye contact is yangizing. Have you ever been looking at someone and they, while looking back at you, fall asleep? You may have, but it is unusual. It sometimes happens when someone is inebriated, has taken some kind of narcotic sleep medication or is extremely exhausted for one reason or another. It is unusual enough for it to stick in your memory and to talk about it, "You know we were looking at each other last night and you just fell asleep, right in front of me." Usually, even if we are very close with someone, even if we are in an embrace, we turn our focus away from the othere person's eyes when we want to sleep. If you are angry at another person, direct eye contact will focus and heighten that anger. If you are afraid of another person, direct eye contact will heighten and focus that fear. If you are attracted to another person, direct eye contact will heighten and focus that attraction. If you feel love for another person, direct eye contact will focus and heighten that love. Focus is yangizing. It stimulates the sympathetic nervous system and when you are falling asleep you want the parasympathetic nervous system to take over. In the same way, focus, whether we are focusing directly or through the instrument of a machine, like a camera or recording device, adds a yang element to whatever it is that is being recorded. That is why light and electro-magnetism act as waves when they are not recorded, and particles when they are.
The reason yang energy is confused with mass, is that powerful accumulations of yang pull smaller accumulations toward it. The strongest accumulation of yang on this planet is at the center of the earth, so all objects with yang energy (which is all objects) are pulled to this center. In the same way the yang center of the earth is pulled toward the much stronger yang center of the sun which is pulled toward the still stronger yang center of the Milky Way Galaxy which is pulled, along with the center of all the other galaxies to the non-physical pure yang core which is at the non-physical center of the physical universe. The pull toward the center of the earth is what we experience and measure as weight and mass, even though there is no real solidity involved. And this pull by yang energy, which takes up no space and cannot be seen except as it manifests in combination with yin, is what physicists refer to as gravity.
What about pure yang? To help understand it, here is a Wikipedia quote about the origin of the Big Bang,
"According to the standard theory, our universe sprang into existence as "singularity" around 13.7 billion years ago. What is a "singularity" and where does it come from? Well, to be honest, we don't know for sure. Singularities are zones which defy our current understanding of physics. They are thought to exist at the core of "black holes." Black holes are areas of intense gravitational pressure. The pressure is thought to be so intense that finite matter is actually squished into infinite density (a mathematical concept which truly boggles the mind). These zones of infinite density are called "singularities." Our universe is thought to have begun as an infinitesimally small, infinitely hot, infinitely dense, something - a singularity. Where did it come from? We don't know. Why did it appear? We don't know."
In a shrinking universe, as the power (but not necessarily the size) of yang increases, it pulls all matter toward it. As I said before, all matter is really opposing energy fields achieving stability by neutralizing each other. As more and more matter is pulled into this yang vortex, these particles of matter collapse; the space between atoms collapses, the space between the electron cloud and the nucleus collapses, the space between the subatomic particles within the nucleus collapses, and the subatomic particles collapse, yielding pure yin and pure yang. Normally yang is at the center and yin is on the outer edge of a particle, but in this accumulating mass, you have enormous yang in the center, but also enormous yin trapped by newly arriving yang and ever contracting matter being drawn in on top of it. At a certain point, the pressure of the outer yang pushing in on all that yin and the yin pushing out against the oncoming yang, creates an enormous explosion. Yin and yang both go shooting out. Yet there is still a lot of yang left behind. Most of the yin energy continues out at infinite speed. A little yang attaches to some of the yin expanding force to form waves and larger amounts of yang attach to the yin force to form particles, as we have discussed above. These particles continue to travel outward from the force of this explosion at an enormous rate, but still restrained somewhat in its expansion by the yang force that remains at the site of the explosion. This matter moving away from the yang center and, while still expanding, forming larger and larger accumulations of matter as more powerful accumulations of yang pull smaller accumulation of yin and yang to them; all this becomes the curved plane of the universe, expanding rapidly in all directions but still held back somewhat by the yang pull left at the center of this universe, the, now, non-physical site of the explosion. This yang center, which is the yang residue of the Big Bang, although it is not on the physical plane, still exerts it's influence, it's pull on all the physical matter of the universe. This is the 'dark force' that slows down the expansion of our universe. Viewed in this way, our entire physical universe is, in a sense, a black hole. It is expanding, but the expansion is held back from Infinity, from breaking through the physical, material plane, by the pulling force of yang at the center.
I want to make one more point about yin and yang before we move on. In addition to helping us understand the workings of the inanimate world, yin and yang can also help us understand our experience, because our bodies and brains through which we experience the world are also composed of yin and yang. We experience this conflict between yin and yang as, I think, the core element of our personalities. The yang element within us, wants to become stronger, to pull more people into our sway, to be noticed, to distinguish ourselves, to attract all the things that we desire in this physical universe to us, and to possess and have power over those things that we desire. The yin element wants to disperse, to be free, to lose our sense of separation by bonding with other people, with causes, with groups and with activities that we love. We long to be unburdened by the grip of personal desires and freely give and disperse to others whatever energy and love that we have. The ultimate yang fantasy is to dominate and control and the ultimate yin fantasy is to love and support.
And again, we try to seek balance with the yin and yang within us. Some of us compartmentalize. We dominate at work and serve at home, or serve at work and dominate at home. Some of us manage to help people but still demand that we do it on an equal footing. Rare is the leader who is yang enough to draw a lot of people to him or her and yin enough to use that power not to dominate or exploit but to really serve the people that are drawn to that strength. This issue of trying to find a healthful balance of the yin and yang forces within us is, I think, central to our mental health and even underlies the Freudian issues that many in our society are so obsessed with. The thrust of many, if not all religious teachings, is to abandon our selfish desires, our covetousness, our attachment to the material world so that we can be liberated from it and become, or return to, our true nature which is the boundless, loving, spaciousness of Infinity. Just as the yang center of the physical universe holds matter and energy back from infinite speed and the transition from separate waves and particles to oneness, so the yang nature within us and our attachment to the material world holds us back from the infinite love and expansion that we are truly part of. I am not proselytizing. Our world is so interesting because we have the full array of sinners and saints, of yang obsessed sociopaths and yin obsessed saints and everything in between. For most of us, even if we realize that the things of this physical world are transitional and illusional, our fellow beings, not their bodies or their possessions, but their true spiritual essences, are not. And we recognize a responsibility to those other beings in our life and find enough yang in ourselves to gather enough strength and enough of a material base, enough order and responsibility, reliability and security, enough focus, in order to be able to have a relaxed, open, mutually receptive, enjoyable yin relationship with them and serve and support them.
If I am right, and the building blocks of the universe are not solid particles, but opposing forces, then there is no real solidity to the material world. If the universe does not begin with a particle or a wave that just happened to be there and just happened to go through an utterly amazing and almost endless and accidental series of collisions, obeying the strictest and most precise set of laws that also just happened to be there; if the building blocks of the universe are really these opposing forces and not matter at all, then what are these forces? What are yin and yang? The same question could be asked of any force, no matter what you call it. What is gravity? We have a pretty good idea of what it does, of it's effect on matter and energy, but take away the things that it is effecting, and what is it? What is the essence of yin, of yang, of gravity or of any force? Again, not what it does, but what it is.
If I say that forces are not physical that may seem like a strange statement. They are certainly powerful. We know of these forces because we see their effect on matter and energy. How, you may ask, can a force be powerful, but not physical? Actually, all forces are not, in and of themselves, physical. If you don't like the words yin and yang, but prefer gravity and electromagnetism, or, if you are of another persuasion and prefer the words heaven and earth, or holy spirit, we only know that these forces are there because of their effect on matter and energy. What is gravity? We can try to say what it does, can even develop formulas that will predict what it will do, but what is it actually? Well, it's inviolable and consistent, so we call it a law, the law of gravity. Yet we cannot see it directly. There is nothing, no thing, that falls on you to push you down when you jump off a building. A positively charged atom will attract an electron, but why? What is the physical nature of the attraction, itself? Well, negatively charged particles move to positively charged particles. Yes, but why? To make balance. But why are these particles trying to make balance? Again, these forces are inviolable and predictable. We can say a lot of things about how they behave, but nothing about what they really are. And that is because they are laws.
A man made law begins with an idea in the mind of the law maker about how to have a society that works more to the satisfaction of the lawmaker (and hopefully, but not neccessarily, to the greater satisfaction of everyone else). We, humans, can't create forces, so we create laws and create ways of enforcing those laws. There is no real force coming out of a red traffic light that compels people to stop, but the law is enforced by police and traffic tickets and we, generally, accept it because it helps us get safely to where we want to go. Natural forces need no outside enforcement. The word 'law' and the word 'force' can be used interchangeably when describing natural forces. There is the law of gravity and the force of gravity; the laws of electromagnetism and the force of electromagnetism. When a scientist thinks he or she understands how a force works they describe it and call that description a law, but they are really the same thing. Natural laws require no enforcement; they cannot, at least on this physical, material plane, be violated. Inanimate objects obey them passively, and when we living creatures behave we cannot violate natural laws so we must metabolize energy or build machines to gather energy, to overcome natural forces in order to do what we want to do, to satisfy our desires.
Yet, despite all this power and inviolability, there is nothing there, no physical, observable thing that you can point to, by itself, that you can call a force. And what I am saying is that the matter and the energy that these forces are having an effect on are themselves combinations of yin and yang, which are the forces that are effecting them in the first place. So if the entire physical world is yin and yang, or opposing forces in various combinations, and these forces only materialize in combination, and there is no real physicality to forces, by themselves, then the entire physical material world, has no real, ultimate physicality. There is the illusion of solidity, the illusion of weight and mass; but really, there is nothing out there.
Before we move on to the next section I should mention something about Occam's Razor. The Razor is not what it sounds like, a Middle Eastern instrument of torture. Rather, the Razor is a philosophical/scientific principle which states that "one should proceed to simpler theories until simplicity can be traded for greater explanatory power." Please note that in the above argument four forces have been replaced by two and gravity and mass have been conflated into the same force. According to the Razor then, that would be: yin/yang 1; current Western scientific theory 0.
If all the above is true, then we have to alter the definition of creation. Creation becomes not making something out of nothing, but making the illusion of something out of nothing. If the universe begins not with energy or a particle, but with a force, in fact, with two opposing forces, and the only thing one can say about these forces, themselves, is that they are laws, and the origin of laws is an idea in the mind of the lawmaker, then creation begins not with a thing but with an idea. And we have to ask ourselves, how can an idea come out of nothing, and what kind of an idea was it that put this whole universe in motion.
From our materialist perspective we think that there can be no intelligence and therefore no ideas without a brain; that intelligence and ideas are the result of the brain. In fact, many of us think that we are our brains; that are brains are doing all the thinking and experiencing for us and we, if we exist at all separate from our brains, are just the passive responders of whatever our brains are telling us to do or think. If that is so, then how can there be an idea without a brain? How can there be any intelligence without a brain, and a human size brain at that? The way that we judge intelligence, though, is the extent to which a person seems to understand the amazing complexity of the world in which he or she lives. Biologists attempt to understand the amazing complexity and organization of our biological equipment, our bodies and brains, that we have been given; physicists and chemists try to understand the complexity of the workings of the inanimate world, and artists try to understand the non-physical world of our experience. So we are in what seems to me the paradoxical position of evaluating intelligence in terms of the degree to which people understand life and the world around them, but grant no intelligence to the actual world whose complexity we are struggling to understand.
We are not our brains. The brain is our computer. We use the brain to record our thoughts and organize our experience. But the brain, as amazingly complex and intricate as it is, is just wiring. The brain does not experience anything. The brain is recording our thoughts. The electrical impulses racing through our brains do not know that they are recording our thoughts; the neurons that transmit these electrons do not know that they are recording our thoughts; and there is no such unitary entity as 'the brain' that knows that it is recording our thoughts. The only unitary entity associated with your brain and your body is you, all the rest is equipment, which is there to passively and unconsciously serve you. This last statement is not true. I just don't want any scientific/materialists to go running for the hills before they finish reading this post. Actually there is another unitary entity associated with your body, a unitary entity without which you could not use your body to do anything that you want to do and could not experience anything through your body, in other words, without which your body and brain would be completely useless. That other unitary entity is the cosmic consciousness, a.k.a. God. Now that I fessed up, now that I used the G word, please at least stick around long enough for me to try to explain what I mean.
The brain does not know that it is recording our thoughts. The brain is the place in our bodies where electrical signals, millions of them at every moment, move from one place to another. They move through neurons, or nerve cells, which are the wiring for these signals. Suppose you and I were talking on the phone. For argument's sake let's say this is a land line, although the argument would hold no matter what medium the electrical signals were passing through. When you and I are talking on this land line, a series of electrical signals are passing through the wires that connect us. Without those signals passing through the wire, we could not have our long distance conversation, but are those signals the same thing as our conversation? Do the electrical impulses know that they are transmitting a conversation? Does the wire know? Do the electrical impulses or the wire care what is said, or if anything is said? Of course not. The conversation is taking place between two beings, you and me, and what is being said becomes a conversation because I am saying what I want you to hear and you are saying what you want me to hear and we are both hearing each other and, hopefully, having the experience that each other wanted us to have when we said the things that we said. So the conversation begins with desire, the desire to communicate certain things and ends with an experience, the experience that each of us has when we hear what the other person has to say. Everything in between, the electrical impulses, the wires, the phone dial, the muscular contractions and expansions of our jaw and tongue muscles, the vibrations of our vocal chords and ear drums, are all the equipment that we use to enable us to have this communication, but it is us, the two of us, who are actually having the conversation; who are initiating the talk, based on what it is that we want to say, and who hear what the other person is saying which allows us to have a certain experience. The conversation, just like all human behavior, in fact just like the behavior of all living beings, begins with desire and ends with experience. The material world, including our brains, our musculature, our nervous system, our technology, our machines, and whatever equipment we use, is merely the intermediary between our desires and our experience, both of which are not in the material world; both of which come from no-thing. We are part of no-thing. Desires connect us to the material world of things so that we can have the experience that we want to have; and that experience we also experience in no-thing. And again, you can point to the brain and say, "But this is the part of the brain where we experience seeing, and this is the part of the brain where we experience memory, and this is the part of the brain where we experience hearing," etc. Not true. That is the part of the brain where neurons fire when we see, remember and hear, but the only thing that is firing is a flow of electrons, in fact, exactly the same flow of electrons at the same voltage that is flowing in every part of my brain as is flowing in every part of your brain. Although you cannot see, hear, smell, taste, touch or measure my experience directly, and I cannot see, hear, smell, taste or touch your experience, I will assume that your experience is as rich as mine and includes an incredible variety of colors and smells and tastes and touches and body sensations and sounds and feelings, all of which are related to a stream of electrons racing through our brains; but our experience is as different from that stream of electrons as the signals passing through the phone wire are different from our actual conversation.
When I said earlier that yin, devoid of any yang, moves at infinite speed and is everywhere and nowhere at the same time and has all information simultaneously, these things are impossible to fully grasp intellectually. Yet think about this: When you desire to do something, and I know that sometimes we are not sure of what we want to do and we hesitate; but when we decide what it is we want to do and initiate the first action to fulfill that desire, which may mean making a phone call, going to the gym, looking something up on our computers, whatever that first step is; to initiate that first action requires, biologically, the firing of the precise pattern of thousands upon thousands, perhaps millions of the one hundred billion neurons in your brain. Now these firing neurons set off a chain of many millions of other firing neurons which result in many millions of minute chemical and muscular processes. I am not talking about the whole chain of reactions. I am talking about the first set, the initiating neurons that begin the chain of reactions. From the time you decide to embark on that first step to the firing of those precise one million neurons, precise because it is only that exact pattern of initiating neurons when fired that will allow you to behave in the way you want to behave; how much time does it take to figure out that precise pattern? Do you think you are figuring it out? It takes no time. It is instantaneous and, no, you are not figuring it out. It is the product of a transcendent intelligence. Here is a quote from another post in this blog called Intelligent Universe,
".... at every moment of your existence, you are desiring to do things and somehow your brain is firing the exact combinations of thousands and millions of neurons that will make that desired behavior possible. Now please think about this. This is one of those things that is so integral to our existence that we take it for granted; but imagine a piano with one hundred billion keys, one key for each of the neurons in your brain . If each key were a half inch wide, that would be a piano that is eight million miles long. Now at every moment the precise combination of thousands or millions of these one hundred billion neuron keys must be played in order to allow you to do what ever it is that you want to do. A highly skilled pianist can look at a sheet of music and hit the right keys a small fraction of a second after reading the score; these, in the most complicated music, may be four or five or even six simultaneous keys out of the 88 keys of a piano. But where could we find a pianist that could hit a precise million neuron keys out of a hundred billion, and do that instantaneously at the same time as reading the 'score' of our desires? and do that continuously, at every moment of our waking existence? Where indeed? We can find such a Transcendent Pianist at the core of every living being on this planet."
When you throw a crumb into the air and a seagull stops in mid air and adjusts the direction of its flight, its angle, elevation and speed, coordinates all the muscles in its wings and talons and beak that are required to catch that crumb, and initiates the firing of the precise millions of neurons that allows it to do all that, how much time does that take and how much intelligence does that require? Again, it takes no time and it takes a transcendent intelligence. What equipment is there that translates the patterns of firing neurons in your brain into the shapes and colors and sounds and touches and smells and feelings that we actually experience? Again there is no equipment, and again it takes no time. The experience and the neuron firing happen simultaneously.
In the cytoplasm of a human egg there are thousands, probably millions of protein molecules that are arranged in the precise place so that if that egg gets fertilized, and the egg begins to mitotically divide into thousands and then millions and then billions of cells, and all of these cells fold, twist, turn in on each other, go through a whole series of convolutions and involutions: these cells, all stemming from that one original cell and now each containing the precise combination of protein molecules that will stimulate the firing of the precise genes that will turn into the thousands of different types of cells that will divide and differentiate into not only the actual fetus, but into the placenta, the yolk sac, the amniotic membrane, the chorion, the embryonic villi that attach to the uterus and the entire temporary system of intra-uterine feeding and eliminating and blood supplying to that embryo until it develops the systems to do it on its own. And all of this differentiation results from the placement of the right gene firing proteins and the right gene suppressing proteins in the cytoplasm of the original egg. Also, there are no visible filaments or structures in the egg cytoplasm to hold these protein molecules in place. Are we to believe that this placement happens with no intelligence, no foresight, just the happy outcome of a fortuitous series of molecular collisions? And you think it's hard to believe in an omnipresent God, in a creator, in a transcendent intelligence? It's so much harder not to.
There are many other examples of transcendent intelligence that I mention in other posts in this blog, an intelligence that we don't even notice and completely take for granted in our every day lives. The 'no-thing' that we live in is an infinite ocean of consciousness, intelligence, love and information without limit. And we, at our core, who we really are, is part of that 'no-thing.' We are not 'that' but 'that which experiences that', we are not a 'that' but a 'that which.' We are context, not content. We are the background, not the foreground of our experience. So, how can an idea come out of 'no-thing'? In fact, all ideas come out of no-thing. Our own ideas come out of the little piece of 'no-thing' that is who we are, and natural ideas come out of the 'cosmic' no-thing that binds the entire universe together.
Not everybody receives the same ideas. We receive the ideas that we want to receive and that we can make sense of and are ready to receive. When Einstein was in Berlin he was bothered by the seeming contradictions between Newtonian mechanics and the laws of electromagnetism. He was obsessed about this problem and would go to sleep thinking about it. Finally, the idea of special relativity came to him. Meanwhile, down the block in Berlin, Schultz the butcher was thinking about how to improve his sales for the approaching Christmas holiday. He was obsessed by it and went to sleep thinking about it. Finally, the idea of moving the hams to the front of the display case and the flank steak to the rear of the display case (since so many people in Berlin have ham for Christmas) came to him. The theory of special relativity did not come to Schultz because he wasn't looking for it and he wasn't prepared to receive it or understand it if it came; and the idea of replacing the flank steaks with the hams did not occur to Einstein because he wasn't looking for it and wouldn't understand what to do with it if it did come. When we focus on a specific problem and think about it deeply, then an idea comes to us. And where does it come from? From 'no-thing' which has all the answers, but can only provide them when you want them and are ready to receive and understand them.
So, what kind of an idea was it that put this whole universe together? What was this idea trying to accomplish? The idea for creating a physical universe came out of no-thing which is beyond space and time, so the following probably doesn't make any sense in terms of Infinity which is simultaneous and not sequential. But for argument's sake, if there were any sequence at all, the idea to have living beings had to either precede or arrive simultaneously with the idea for a physical universe. And I say this knowing full well that, on this planet at least, life forms followed matter by several billion years.
To make my point, I would like to talk about codes. Computer code consists of just two signals, a high frequency signal and a low frequency signal. Who ever got the idea of using this code had to think of it as a way of communicating information and had to have some idea of the kind of equipment, or machinery that could read this code. Computer code was not invented just so that people could stare at endless lists of 1's and 0's. So, the idea of computer code would not have occurred unless someone lived in a world where people had a written language, had a desire to communicate ideas to one and other, and where there were machines or equipment already existing that were similar to, or could be modified to produce and then read or be responsive to this code. Take pixels. Now whoever received the idea for pixels had to already have been looking for a way to transmit pictures that people could see. He or she didn't invent pixels just to have pixels. If the pixels just existed as separate random dots of color, why would anyone want to look at them? The idea for pixels must have included the idea that these points of color could be joined and blended together so they would appear as an unbroken picture. That means that the inventor of pixels must have had some knowledge of the capabilities of the human eye and the intelligence of the human observor. Certainly in the land of the blind, pixels would not have been created. The idea of pixels would never have occured. The idea of braille might occur, because the inventor understood his or her own ability to distinguish touches, and the ability of other people in this world to distinguish touches and the ability of these touchers to communicate with each other using words. Without words and without touch sensations, even in the world of the blind, the idea of braille would never have occurred. And, of course, the same thing is true for letters and numbers. In a society of grunters, the idea of an alphabet would never occur, and unless there were people who had thoughts about the quantities of the things in the world around them, the idea for a system of numbers would never have occurred.
Before we get back to yin and yang and atoms, I would like to mention one more code, the genetic code. This code, which is absolutely basic to life and has been there since the very first life form, is a code consisting of four nucleic acid molecules arranged in long, long rows in every living cell. Nucleic acids are coded so that in a gene, every three successive nucleic acid molecules, or nucleotides, in this chain is coded for a specific amino acid. This chain of nucleic acids is translated into a chain of amino acids which become the proteins which are the main ingredients, the building blocks, of every organ, enzyme and structure of your body. Now there are some people that believe that the genetic code formed by itself, by the merry outcome of a fortuitous accidental accumulation of molecules and sends the information it is coded for also, by itself. That is the equivalent, exactly, of computer code forming its own applications by the high and low frequencies getting together and arranging themselves into Apple Computers and all their applications (so maybe Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak never really did exist and the high and low frequencies write the codes and build the applications by themselves, probably in Santa's workshop from where Santa delivers Apple Computers and iPhones by reindeer to the rooftops of every Mac store); it would be the equivalent of letters writing their own novels and numbers writing their own equations. To go even further, the idea of the genetic code, just like the other ideas above could not have occurred unless there was a corresponding idea for constructing the utterly precise and technical equipment to read that code and the equally precise technical equipment to translate that code into amino acids and, also, please don't forget, a way of folding that chain of amino acids, often with the addition of fats and sugars, in an absolutely precise way so that the protein molecule (each one of which is an utterly high precision and high tech machine) can do it's work. Also included in this idea had to be an idea, a system, for delivering the manufactured protein to the exact spot in the organism where it needs to be, often along with, simultaneously, other proteins that it must combine with to get the exact material that is needed for building that particular part of the body, and an idea for the amazingly complex and exquisitely accurate timing system so that proteins in the growing body and enzymes in the completed body get to where they need to get to at the exact time that they need to get there; and often, as in many thousands of times every day in adult life, and many billions of times every day during the growth and development of the embryo, these needs are urgent. Oh, yes, and let's not forget that this genetic system must include a way, which has not and probably will never be discovered by science, of shaping these protein materials into the organs and organelles and structures of a growing fetus, because the genetic code, as amazing as it is, only provides the materials for the construction of bodies. Each gene is an idea for a new structure, or part of a new structure and has to include, although not perhaps on the physical plane, the blueprint for the shape that these protein molecules will be arranged in once they arrive at the construction site. If it is an idea for a new gene for an existing organism, that plan must also include a way of altering the entire genetic firing pattern of the receiving organism, a plan for re-apportioning space in the brain of the receiving organism so that there will be room for the regulation and control of this new structure, as well as genetic changes that will bring about other changes in the shape and contours of the receiving organism so that it can maintain balance and equilibrium. Some times this is too much of a change for an existing organism to receive; sometimes the organism must be guided through a whole series of smaller, subtler changes before the idea in its most advanced form can be introduced. This is not so that Infinity can go through a learning process, but so that the organism can be gradually altered and prepared to ultimately be ready to receive the genetic idea that was there from the beginning. So if you are still a member of that hopefully shrinking group of shallow thinkers who still cling to Victorian Darwinian ideas and still think that life appeared, by itself, from the oh so fortunate random accumulation of molecules, I hope this information puts the final nail in that pathetic coffin.
Now let's get back to yin and yang. Yin and yang are like the three dimensional pixels of the physical universe, or the high and low frequencies of computer code. The idea of yin and yang had to include the idea that they would come together in different amounts and different ratios to make a variety of balanced or somewhat balanced combinations that we call particles and waves, and that some of these particles would join together to make a variety of atoms. With the slightest difference in yin/yang ratios we get the whole range of waves which provides us with, among other things, all the sounds and colors that we see and hear. Atoms are organized into a coded system too, so that by adding or subtracting protons, neutrons and electrons, and always identically structured protons, neutrons and electrons, we get the entire variety of elemental materials that our world is made of, either by these elements themselves, or in combination with other elements. This includes everything that we breathe, drink, eat, make shelter with, clothe ourselves with, the entire panoply of stuff that surrounds us and that our bodies are made from, all originating in combinations of these three atomic particles: protons, neutrons and electrons (which are, in turn, arrangements of yin and yang). These elemental materials, either by themselves or in various combinations with other elemental materials, are either light or heavy, soft or hard, edible or inedible, beautiful or ugly, permeable or impermeable, fragrant or smelly or odorless, in fact, every adjective that was ever uttered to describe a physical environment was motivated by these various arrangements of protons, neutrons and electrons. Yet without living beings to relate to and to experience these materials, they no longer have any of these qualities. It's like instead of having a whole world of fabulous computer applications, there is just endless lines of 1's and 0's. Instead of having novels and poetry and plays there are just meaningless repetitions of twenty-six letters. Instead of having algebra, and physics and accounting, there are just endless rows of the same ten numerical symbols. Without living beings, with nothing to experience it, the universe is just endless combinations of electrons, protons, neutrons and waves of different frequencies. In a world where there is no life, and I don't mean Mars or the sun which we living beings observe and study and write poems about, but no living beings what so ever, then there are not only no adjectives, but there are no nouns, beyond electron, proton, neutron, and different frequencies of waves, and all of these moving at different speeds and accumulated in large masses or small masses. There are no mountains, planets, stars, nebulae, rivers, oceans, deserts all of which are words that we use to describe how we perceive these collections of electrons, protons and neutrons. And there are not even the words 'electrons, protons and neutrons,' because there is no one to ascribe a name to them.
There is no other conclusion but that this system of creating matter, solidity, weight, sound, light and radiation, or the illusion of all of these, was for the use and enjoyment of living beings that would need these elements to survive, and that would have the ability to experience and ascribe meaning to this world. Now it took, at least on our planet, a long time for life to arrive, but no-thing, or the cosmic consciousness or God does not operate in time. There is no schedule, no rush, no restlessness. If the world is set in motion by the interplay of yin and yang, then it must run its course until we have a planet and then a planet warm enough and cool enough to support microbial life, and an environment that is not constantly being bombarded by meteors, and the stabilization of the magnetic field which is somehow, but no one knows exactly how, related to the stable positioning of organelles within cells and the stable positioning of protein molecules in eggs, and we needed over a billion years of microbes to convert a carbon dioxide rich environment to an oxygen rich environment, and we needed ice ages and underwater heating vents, etc., etc., to move minerals to the surface of the water so there would be phosphorous to build bones and skeletal creatures; and the more you study it, the more you realize that, without violating any natural laws, everything had to happen at the rate it happened in order for there to be life and then in order for there to be more complex life. And the rate of the arrival of all these life forms was not contingent on living beings 'learning' to be better survivors, or genes 'learning' to be better survivors (whatever that could possibly mean), but was contingent on the earth and all the environmental conditions of the earth being ready to receive from the cosmic consciousness, from no- thing, from God, the next more complex idea to move evolution forward. And this idea had absolutely nothing to do with survival, or being a better survivor. The first life forms, microbes, arrived here four billion years ago at the moment when conditions permitted that idea to survive here, when this planet was ready to receive that idea. And that same microbe still survives today, outnumbering us advanced metazoans at least a billion to one. Survival had absolutely nothing to do with it. More advanced life forms arrived here the moment that conditions on this planet allowed them to be here; the moment that the idea for them could be safely materialized by rearranging and adding nucleotides to create new genes which provided the construction materials for the new ideas for new shapes and new organs and new ways of surviving which the environment could now support. But all these ideas, communicated through the medium of genes, were there from the very beginning and had to await the development of the inanimate environment, including changes in climate and stability and polarity and chemical content of the waters and land, and the gradual development of organisms so that they could receive more and more complex organizations of genes and still survive. These ideas were not waiting for genes, or organisms or species to 'learn' anything; they were waiting for the earth and the organisms that inhabited it, to be ready to receive them.
I said before that consciousness is really indivisible; that we live in an ocean of consciousness. The idea for living beings is an idea for separating consciousness, or, really, giving the illusion of a separate consciousness. Each living being sees or senses the world through the filter of its own desires and own sensory equipment. Each living being sees a different world. Each individual within a species sees a somewhat different world than other members of its species, and each species sees a very different world from other species. Through sexual reproduction and the system whereby an individual inherits a set of genes from each parent and then those sets are mixed in the new offspring, there is variation among the species. This variation is a brilliant idea for making each species more capable of surviving environmental threats, but it also, and even more importantly, provides an interesting life for each individual. A species is a group of living beings that understand each other because they experience the world in basically the same way. Yet because each individual member of a species is at least somewhat different from every other member, no two members understand each other completely. That way we can be curious about one another; we can surprise one another; we can play and learn and improvise with one and other; and life becomes interesting. If members of a species were so different from each other that there was no basic understanding, we would die of loneliness. If members of a species were identical, we would die of boredom.
So each of us comes here from Infinity and commits to a specific genome, a specific environment, a specific family, a specific history and a specific set of desires; and we experience the world through this unique filter. All this gives us the illusion that we are a separate consciousness, but if we look not at the contents of consciousness, not at what we desire, and who we know and what are thoughts are and what are values are, but at the consciousness itself, at that which has those desires, that which knows that knowledge, that which thinks those thoughts, then we realize that consciousness, that true self is the same true self for you as it is for me as it is for all living beings, and consciousness really is non-local, really is indivisible.
Infinity, God or the cosmic consciousness takes care of our survival. At every moment there are thousands of processes going on in each of the one hundred trillion cells in your body. All of these quadrillion processes are absolutely precise and specific and coordinated to guarantee your survival. We also inherit a series of biological desires. These desires insure that our biological needs are met, even though we have no real knowledge of what those needs are. We just eat when we're hungry, drink when we're thirsty, sleep when we're tired, continue doing that which gives us pleasure, stop doing that which gives us pain, and somehow all our needs are met and we survive (thank you!). We also have other desires, which I mentioned before and that have to do with our yin/yang nature. When we desire something, whatever it is, then Infinity/God, is the transcendental pianist that fires the neuron keys that initiates a cascade of amazing, microscopic responses that allows us to do it. But life has been designed to be a learning process. God doesn't tell you what to do, but allows you to do whatever you want to do and learn from your mistakes. Yes, eventually you will get back to oneness; you will leave this world of opposing forces and desires, but as I said, Infinity/God is not in space/time. There's no rush, no worry. If you come back for another go round in this physical/material world, it's because you have something more to learn. But again, no rush. Learning is fun and we have all the time in the world.
As always, your comments are most welcome.