This post I promised to take a crack at defining spirit; I mean a REAL, scientifically-oriented definition, not woolly mumbo-jumbo or guru-babble.
Actually, it isn’t so hard if you go about it the right way. Basically, spirit is non-material, I think we can all agree on that. So what does it mean to be non-material?
- no matter
- no energy
- no location in space
- no time
- no wavelength
We have to add this last, because even wavelength implies a Hertzian field. That’s the equivalent of energy and mass.
But so far, this doesn’t imply consciousness.
What we have to do is add awareness (awareness of awareness), which implies perception and cognitive function.
So consciousness is something that doesn’t exist, by normal physics definitions, yet has the ability to perceive, think and be aware. Not just that but be aware of being aware.
How could such a thing come about? I have no idea, honest!
I promised Viv I would write about consciousness and our origins. It relates to material in my book “To Fly Without Wings” and the new, expanded edition, now published.
Well, is consciousness a medical topic? Unconsciousness certainly is! So why not consciousness?
It’s one of the hardest topics to speak to, in all creation. Like a knife that cannot cut itself, consciousness may not be able to explain itself. Self-awareness is something we all have in common. But if you think about it for just a few moments, you’ll realize we don’t even know that we have that in common. I’m self aware. But how do I know you’re self aware?
I don’t; and that, to philosophers, is called the “zombie problem”. How do we truly determine if another individual is conscious and sentient in the sense we ourselves feel it? If you come up with a quick answer, you haven’t understood the question properly! Continue reading
The guru says:
Let’s start this important section with what may arguably be the BIGGEST of all philosophical life principles. It lies behind all right thinking and all good (intelligent, moral) living.
Briefly stated, the law is this:
What you give out is what you get back
This appears in many forms, in many texts and religious creeds. You may recognize it in the Buddhist law of Karma or the Biblical phrase “As ye sow, so shall ye reap”. It is the philosophical or psychological version of Newton’s law of motion: action and reaction are equal and opposite. His mechanistic principle says you can’t push one way without automatically creating the counter-thrust.
There is a much slangier phrase today: “What goes around comes around”. All of these maxims and proverbs exist because we recognize that there is an important principle at work in our lives. The results of ignoring its presence in the fabric of the universe are inevitable confusion, dismay and negative outcomes.
Probably this law is even more important in its reverse statement:
What you’ve got is what you gave out! If your marriage is pretty poor, that’s because YOU are a pretty poor marriage partner (never mind the other person involved). If you are unhappy at work, YOU are an unsatisfactory employee. If people trick you with lies, it’s because YOU are not honest.
Stated this way, it is a very hard principle indeed to live by. Most of us would prefer to ignore it and blame all our troubles on other people. It’s easier that way. We duck our own involvement and fondly imagine that we are in the clear. Continue reading