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A View of Reality

  1. Mar 14, 2006 #1
    This is a compliation of various trains of thought that I've tried bringing together into a wholistic understanding of reality;

    There is a basic factor which has been overlooked in how we normally conceive of reality. Time has two directions.

    As point of reference, the observer goes from past events to future events, but as frame, these events go from being in the future to being in the past.

    Time isn't a dimension because the frame of reference does not constitute an absolute against which the point of reference transcribes another dimension. It is a process in which the point and frame move relative to their respective influence on one another. Content and context go in opposite directions. To the hands of the clock, it is the face going counterclockwise.

    The unit of time goes from beginning to end, but the process of time is going toward the beginning of the next, leaving the old. A day is measured by the sun rising in the east and setting in the west, but the reality is the earth is rotating the other direction. As our day ends, others are dawning.

    Our lives are units of time going from beginning to end, while the process of living goes on to the next generation, shedding the old like dead skin.

    Think of a factory; The product moves from initiation to completion, but the production line faces the other way, with its mouth consuming raw materials and finished product being expelled.

    This relationship of the process and the unit is one of perspective. A unit at one level is a process at another and vice versa. We go through time as time goes through us. What matters is energy generated, whether calories burned, or wages and profits earned.

    Time is not so much a projection out from the present event, as it is a coming together of factors to define what is present. The past is the influences which define current order and the future is the energy which will motivate that order. When this order is an open set, it absorbs fresh energy, defining it, so the future is a continuation of the past. When the order is a closed set, the energy accumulates in open spaces and the future becomes a reaction to the past. Evolution and revolution.

    Reality consists of energy recording information. As the amount of energy remains the same, old information is erased as new is recorded. This information is a product of relationships of the manifest energy. The only absolute frame is the present, so any action is balanced by an "equal and opposite" reaction. Reality is the energy defining the space. Time is a function of the information. "Past" and "future" do not physically exist because the energy necessary to manifest them is manifesting the present.

    Time, like temperature, is a method of measuring motion, not its cause. Temperature is a level of activity against a prevailing scale. Time is the tensor relationship of the particular point of reference to its context. When context changes, ie. temperature, gravitational, velocity, the rate of change is relative to circumstance.

    The existence of the animal is linear. We travel along a path and the brain originated as a navigational instrument. One side might be more focused then the other, but that's a matter of developing perspective, much like binocular vision is necessary for depth perception. Flora doesn't need a brain because it doesn't have to navigate. Temperature is probably as primal to plants as time is to animals.

    The bottom up processes and top down entities they create, which then define them, are all around us. Democracy is a process. The Republic is an entity. Capitalism is a process. The corporation is an entity. Russian communism failed because it tried to take the process of the economy and turn it into a single unit, strangling fresh input. Chinese communism has so far succeeded because it has turned itself into the worlds largest corporation.

    To survive, an entity must enforce some degree of discipline, otherwise cancers tear it apart. On the other hand, when the police function gets out of hand, it is a form of autoimmune disease and is just as fatal. The pendulum swings back and forth because we don’t want just a flat line down the middle.

    Why is something seemingly logical overlooked in our conception of reality? The mind is a process and its product is the thought. So it's natural for our understanding to congeal as units. Even though science understands objective reality is an illusion, modern physics is still trying to define it in terms of the unit. Be it particle, wave, string, etc. Even time and space are proposed to be ultimately quantized. These discrete units measure out some linear length of time from the moment they are formed until they dissipate, but unit and continuum are two sides of the same coin. One defining, one creating.

    What of our religious assumptions? We have this narrative story about a spiritual entity leading humanity forward. The notion of God started out as a personification of the tribal soul and anthropomorphization of the elements of nature. Three thousand years ago, it was cutting edge logic to combine all these manifestations into one.

    The problem is that one isn’t the absolute, zero is. The medium and median are essence we rise from, not a focal point from which we fell. A spiritual absolute wouldn’t be a singular entity, definable quantity or extreme, but, like zero, both void and center.

    An all-knowing absolute is a contradiction. The absolute has no distinctions, while knowledge is an endless process of distinction and judgment. That is why a triune deity makes some sense; Father, Son, Holy Ghost. Absolute, extant, infinite. Past, present, future. Order, complexity, chaos.

    Good and bad are not a metaphysical dual between between the forces of light and darkness, but the binary code for conscious decision. A bottom up accumulation of billions of years of biological yes/no, on/off, I/O.

    For the process, good and bad are relative. What is good for the fox, is bad for the chicken. For the individual, such distinctions may as well be absolute, at least for the chicken.

    The moral argument for monotheism is that belief in God instills respect for law and order. I would point out that the natural tendency to identify ones own soul as an expression of God sometimes results in the impression that ones natural impulses are potentially infallible. Our current President would be a prime example. If we were instead to view that source of being as the essence from which we are all striving, yet fallible expressions of, then the more natural tendency might be to think before we act.

    All of reality is both absolute and infinite, but when you separate out one point of reference, it is all relative to that point. This is what makes our individuality so overwhelming. We overcome that enormity by focusing on the details of living and this ties us back to the larger whole.

    The reason life sometimes seems meaningless is because the concept of objective ‘meaning’ is static and reductionistic, while life is dynamic and holistic. It is when we distill away all that seems transitory about life, searching for that hard little nugget of value, that we have lost all we threw away and have so little to show for it. Everything has subjective purpose. That is what ties it all together.

    There is a time in one’s life when the father goes from being the model one follows, to the foundation one rises from. I think humanity is nearing that point.


    John Brodix Merryman Jr.
    Sparks, Maryland
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 23, 2006 #2
    I like this because this thought occurred to me also... I think we were orbiting around some of the same ideas in thought space. All thoughts are connected to other related thoughts, like a web of "points", and we travel from thought to thought along these connecting paths. As you near a thought, the related thoughts surrounding it get further and further to fully describing it, but a person can never fully describe it because we are finite (my ansatz is that fully describing a complete understanding of any idea would take an infinate number of words). I feel we all sort of orbit around something, and get more familiar with it the more we orbit it through the ether of connecting thoughts around it. Sometimes we focus our attention on a different thought off in the distance, and we go off on a tangent from our original thought orbit as we near the other thought of interest, but the two thoughts are connected nonetheless. The reason why we can simply jump from thought to thought but we seemingly can't fully reach the thought that we're truely interested in is because the thoughts that we travel within are never fully understood. Through our tastes, persuits, careers, hobbies, etc. we focus on the full understanding of something infinately complex (ie a thought) and find all sorts of things near it (which we find aestetically pleasing, though can't fully understand why). We are the objects of our own deception in a way, though since we aren't aware of it in our persuits, we all discover, learn, and ameliorate our understanding of our determined goals, which is a pretty good self-fulfilling prophecy.

    You've written some good stuff. Every sentance is like candy to the brain!
  4. Mar 24, 2006 #3
    transcendence in surrender

    Language, like law, is an approximation of reality, not the basis of it.

    These visual and auditory symbols that are words are like Pavlov's bell. They attach themselves to aspects of reality and create little circuits in our brain. For (most) people, the word "steak" causes the same reaction as that bell did to those dogs. The chore is to try and reverse engineer this process so that all those minor connections re-emerge and we see the reality our verbal creations have obscured. This is not to deny the value that words give us, but they are a means of understanding, not an end and therefore have limits. We are components of a larger organism, but our individual lives are little bubbles that form and pop. Today these bubbles are like little translucent cocoons. What we call love is when our bubble joins with another bubble and forms one larger bubble. Rather then obscuring our ability to see out of our own bubbles with a lot of personal attachments, if we keep our bubble transparent as possible, then we maintain the most connectivity with all that is outside our bubble and can better understand other people and nature in a larger context and not so much through our own beliefs. After a while, you begin to sense that deeper reality. As Nietzsche put it, "I was staring into the abyss and then I realized it was staring back." That void at the center is to be respected, not feared. Of course you need to maintain your own equilibrium in this larger reality, or you will really fry a few circuits.

    Thank you.
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