For every act of evil, there is an act of beauty. You Can't Change the World, Only Your Attitude Towards It.

Science answered by the G word. No strings attached.

No strings attached. No complex string theory. No branes. No magical forces. No Higgs mechanism. None of the old physics.

The answer is the g word. Capital G.

God? Nooooo. The Grid!

Interested in science? Check out for incredible insights and simplifications in science. All tied up with equations to suit those who need and an elegant wonderful depiction of how the theory of something works.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

Happiness, Life, etc..

To explain the human story, why we are here and our answer to happiness it is necessary to walk a path through physics, cosmology, neuroscience and philosophy. At the outset a little must be said as to how this, the best we can offer, is limited by language.

Cosmologies, sciences and philosophies of the past have stated a quite natural and seemingly obvious claim that "there was nothing and by some event/magic/intervention/unknown/unknowable there came to be something". Leading physics today though says that there is no such thing as nothing and no true idea of something. That there is a quantum state which is impossible to fit into our language, causal or mechanical frameworks. This can seem limiting but it is also wonderfully magical. Perhaps this start point appears as a knife to the throat of any attempt to describe our world and place in it but this very same sharp edge is what we need to cut right through to the truth of the matter. Nothing is doing anything, acting on anything, causing anything. At root, in the quantum fabric there is the possibility of something and nothing appearing, always as a unity and - here at the introduction - that attempts too much with language.

From the above "something/nothing" quantum state of nothing/something came an appearance of something floating around in nothing. That took time and so something, nothing, spatial and temporal dimensions, apparent forces and so on appeared to come about at once. These terms are attempts to describe facets of this quantum nothing/something and so we must never take one of them as having an objective reality or consider one without all of the rest. One can not consider time without space or matter without space. Also then not consider time without matter or any of the above without the seeming forces at play. The apparent first case of this quantum occurrence, at least the one measurable and so meaningful to us, we know of was The Big Bang. There may have been more bangs, there may not have even been one. We measure the first significant event by tracing back all that we can see and measure now to, not a point in space and time, but the occurrence of space and time. (It is clear how language fails as the very rules for constructing a sentence demand apparent cause, effect and temporality of which "then" there were none).

Be it through entirely reductional means or by more holistic means where new "emergent" qualities arise from increasingly complex arrangements of networking "parts" then the quantum dance wiggled and became increasingly huge and complex. In truth this is beyond huge as it is infinite and beyond complex as such as it is the entirety of everything bar none. This quantum dance, which as said has no meaningful language to describe it, from our perspective and in our language, interacted with itself. [from now onwards I will just use English words without quotations or explanation and let you remind yourself of their inadequacy for describing that outside of our sensory world. These words are all we have after all so lets progress without the inertia of caveats]. Certain parts took on certain qualities providing them the abilities to interact and this appeared to happen along a causal and temporal, linear dimension. Invisible to us but known to our minds as time.

Within this story ever more complex wiggles appeared to 14 billion year old scientists (as that is how old we are in this story) as various constituent parts. This is after all how our mind has evolved to describe our macro world, we insist that wholes are made of parts. These parts however are not parts but aspects of this self interacting dance of one, infinite, nothing. For a time these parts were atoms, for a time they were protons and electrons (protons and electrons we found made up atoms), for a time they were electrons and quarks (3 quarks we found made up a proton), for a time they were known as strings (strings were theorized to be the fundamental wiggles which made up anything known before them), for a time strings became more complex "branes" and for a time all of these ideas were embraced, cast aside, loved and even dismissed. We met limits in our abilities to test theories but what we had come to know in a brief magical time in science was so great and so accurate in describing our world that in the wake of the revolution came GPS, Wi-Fi, CPU's, Lasers and a whole host of magical and powerful things depending on the, as yet unseen, quantum universe behind all of reality.

As these wiggles took on complex forms, be they described as strings, quarks, atoms or anything else then the force we all know as gravity acted also. This stuff coalesced and, as it did, even more complex forms came to be. In time gravity and the other forces present in these (truly) nuclear furnaces in space could balance no more and huge explosions ripped thorough space scattering what we know as chemical elements into space. Carbon, lithium, helium and anything up to the weight of iron spilled out into the universe and they all too felt gravity. New, second generation stars, of which our Sun is one, took form and matter, which was not grabbed by the gravity of these stars and sucked into them, floated around in volatile elliptical orbits sustaining collisions. In time the larger bits pulled in the smaller and planets of very complex mixtures of chemicals took shape.

The indescribable quantum wiggle grew more in complexity and in our story became chemical compounds and, not forgetting the possibilities on offer in infinity, some, you can imagine it happening, animated.

At first two complex compounds would both do well to react with another compound. When one did it went static but when the other did it became larger and was left fit to continue. Within liquids certain reactions went well and those compounds which generated bubbles grew to protect or isolate themselves. An interplay went ahead where many possibilities were tried and by no method whatsoever besides having all the time they wanted and any means available to them, reactions went on in whatever way they did. As growing compounds took on mass they split apart and these parts continued. In time these subdividing parts came together and, not forgetting the time scales involved, billions of years, and how long you have to read this story, much less, some mixtures were successful and others not. Successful compounds grew more complex and at some time, still billions of years ago, there were chemical compounds so adept to duplication that they were carrying with them instruction manuals, protection, and things we may now recognise as cells were living. The quantum universe, from our perspective, was alive. Although it would be simple to state and accept that aliveness is the natural state of the universe I'm only now looking at the animated life which contrasts, in our macro world, with the inanimate dead.

The most complex collection of cells we know of are the ones collectively known as human beings and the most complex part of them is their brains. Until very recently brains were thought to be made of neurons and useless goo. It turned out with time that there are many hundreds of kinds of neuron, the eye has over a hundred kinds of its own, the heart has neurons, your stomach (gut feelings) has neurons and your brain has billions. The largest collection of neurons is in the brain and each neuron has thousands of linkages which may reconfigure at any moment. Your brain is said to be plastic as it can, and it does, reconfigure moment by moment. It is said that there are more connections in the brain than stars in the known universe. The complexity here is, as you know by being there right now and considering all of this, quite incredible.

Not only are the connections in the brain vast but they do not operate as switches, on or off, and in circuits, nothing so simple as that! They operate in networks with many kinds of signalling media available to them. The specific skills of our brain, and the reason we did not evolve a language suited to the quantum world, were honed by our need for survival in a world that seems to us to be made of big and small things operating in a causal manner. Lion runs at human, human will be eaten, human attempts evasive action. The resulting complexity of our brains though is a very powerful tool and, as said, plastic and highly adaptable. While certain parts of the brain do seem to be commonly wired one way for most of us, say the part for vision is almost certainly at the back of your head, other parts of the brain can be involved in many tasks and parts can alter purpose and many features will be unique to individuals.

During the evolution of the brain the increasing complexities of, what are ultimately quantum wiggles, dressed as chemicals, being successful or not in replication, took on increasingly more complex roles. Brains for some animals are only a means to navigate relatively simple landscapes, finding food, partners and so on. Brains for other animals developed apparent skills like the ones you are using now and along side the near visible features such as these the invisible world of genes operated unseen.

Seeing as we did that successful chemical interactions multiplied then so too successful genes will lead to duplication of certain traits. If two sisters are born and they move to different sides of the same river and one caries a gene that makes her snore at night then given the same nocturnal predators the snoring sister may have more chance of scaring away nocturnal animals from her babies as, even unaware of the threat, she slept at night. This outcome is deemed successful and, as unimpressed as you are at snoring, nature deemed it a successful adaptation. Variations of this speculative example can be from two tree seedlings dropped by a tree. They happen to be indigestible by birds but eaten all the same. Both seeds drop in the birds droppings onto different fields. One field is prone to flooding and the other not. Both seeds carry a gene that allows them to cope well with excess water but as the trees have offspring in their respective fields the gene degenerates in both families. In the flooded field only those offspring carrying the gene survive, the others don't but in the dry field all saplings survive with or without the gene. Within not too many generations the gene is strengthened in one strain and diluted or lost forever in the other. These related trees, given enough time and variation become different species with different appearances and qualities which can no longer interbreed.

The brain then underwent internal evolution in ways so far and beyond the complexities of the above examples that they would take pages to even theorise over but we do not need to attempt to rewrite what Charles Darwin and all who have followed him have already stated and proven so well. Certain qualities, even seen as quite horrible, such as feeling pain or being depressed flourished for their ability to lead to successful duplication and nothing else. Two people cut their hands, one feels pain and is drawn to act the other does not feel pain, great for them!, but they do not react, become infected and die with no offspring, not so great for them. The qualities we have have been successful to date so you do not have a single relative in your direct family tree who has failed to duplicate itself since the beginning of time. We are one big family.

We are one big family though where it has been good for our genes as a collective whole for some of us to be subservient and others dominant, for some to be creative and others dogmatic, for some to be so fond of their recent heritage that they will kill in its name and for some to be so taken by our interrelatedness that they are drawn to question all apparent division. We have evolved with dangerous and complex contradictory drives inside one brain. We have genes that know success is from having one steady life partner and via complexities in community have attempted to legislate that this must be the way for all. We have genes that know success by having many partners and have successfully duplicated these genes by doing just that. We have dominant brain organizations which infer parts out there in the world and we have dominant brain organisations that see wholeness. With such wildly separate examples and so much else in our mix it can be no surprise that in the 9 billion versions of the human alive today that we are so different to one another even given our striking similarities. There may well be 9 billion completely correct views on some subjects, or exactly what shade of green is the real green.

Along with the complexities in our brains we have the external world where interactions between us are just as important and just as complex as the interactions of neurons and transmitters in our heads. As our genes move to duplicate and for duplicated genes to reattempt their successes, our complex brains have gone to shape the world in which we live. Now our world is only this way for us. A bird will fly from one area of land to another but we will display a passport to cross the very same land mass. We have labelled and split our world in the way our brain has evolved to label and split what we sense around us. When a child is born then the universe for them is completely at one. Just as soon as we can though we have them label parts. We have them say dog when they see a dog and we repeat it until they repeat it and then we congratulate them for saying it on their own and then we ask them to please stop saying things out loud and to internalize the labelling. This learned labelling, while very useful and and purposeful, is then taken to new levels as we have children apply labels to things which are not even things. We have them label good and bad, consciousness, east, west, China, India, space, life and death. We have them treat concepts as things as real to them as doggy and Mum and Dad.

From this labelling tool that was deemed so useful and successful to organisms that successfully replicate, a method by which we could pick the right food, give directions and avoid danger, we have moved to increased complexity where we label areas of land, animals and misty concepts such as consciousness with the same language. We have killed one another over these labels. I say this is called X, he says it is Y, I say that X has the qualities of goodness and love and he says that X is unreal and those qualities must be applied to Y instead. We fight to the death.

Not only do we fight to the death over concepts but we fight intellectually over labels. The very contents of this writing up to now and likely to the end will upset people who don't like the use of certain labels. I said early on how we don't have the language to describe the quantum world and later how our language evolved in the large scale world - yet people will fill debates with hours of airy talk over just what labels should be used for such things. To avoid expanding this writing by pages I'll lump religion into one basket as a form of philosophy, a way of carrying ideas suited to some genes surviving certain times and places down through generations. Philosophy has been about as long as humans I'd confidently guess and due to this it is apparent that the philosophies of past generations can only survive if they follow the examples of the genes that carry them and adapt, casting the weak aside and moving forward with those that suit the current climate. A revolution which took flight from the shoulders of philosophy was that of science.

Science has a unique quality that religion did not display and only the better philosophies did, it is willing and even flourishes by throwing off all that is proven wrong. Science refuses the unprovable and only maintains the proven if it remains testably true. As new tools come about or new measurements, findings or so on science, and what it deems to be truth, adapts. As great a mind as Isaac Newton had, formidable in fact, we only moved with his ideas for so long. We did not think we must keep them going for eternity because they are old and we did not think that we should keep them once more accurate methods came about. Our ideas of what goes on in the brain are only as good as our tools and current investigations allow for, we do not deem them fact but part of an ongoing discovery.

Science is the complex universe, the indescribable quantum wiggle, attempting to explain itself - which leads to a discussion on happiness.

Due to the successful duplications over the past billions of years since the universe seems to have gone from the potential to the seemingly actual, and following our story version which is restricted by language and the way our brains formed, we have exactly this to go on. By this I mean that sense you have there of being someone who can sit back and think of being someone and think about being someone thinking about being someone - self aware and conscious. That is what we have and that is our tool and we are the universe looking back on itself and attempting explanation, even given the faults that came with it, this is it.

We have minds that insist on there being parts that operate by cause and effect (as false as this is from what we do know about the quantum thread our life’s tapestry is woven from then cause and effect are illusions true only for our brains and not the universe writ large). We have qualities such as brains which have us writhe in agony when something goes wrong like toothache or a poke in the eye. We have imbalances which have us kill, hurt one another, hurt the ones we love. We have finite lives and we die, we suffer the deaths of others and we are guaranteed nothing more certainly from the moment we are born that we will die one unknown day.

Along with these weaknesses that evolution has provided us we have daily fluctuations in our brains too. We have been provided by evolution a sense of self, feelings of happiness and sadness and a sense of agency in the world. It just happens that these qualities, good or bad, weak or strong were the ones that can trace a family tree back as far as we have yet managed to see. Perhaps we had ancestors who were only ever happy, but they did not replicate. We can be happy or sad. [Note that philosophically it would be impossible to be only happy as happiness is only know by contrasting it with sadness so to know happiness one must know sadness.]

So here we are, we have this set-up and we have our complex drives, we have this sense of agency in the world and we have this desire to explain or be explained, to find purpose in this universe. This universe is what we are though, we are the universe, we are the magical, inexplicable quantum dance. One thing that can not be proven false and is ever there to be in awe of and take great fulfilment from is that we are the universe. Confused as we are by our make-up into thinking we are an individual -in- the universe, we are in fact, the universe.

This individual self, that we are confused into thinking we are, and have learned to believe that we are, seems by the readings of any culture yet to leave its mark in writing to have one true desire - happiness.

We want to be happy and we want our offspring to be happier than we were. This has been found by every researcher who has enquired to date, humans want to be happy. As I have pointed out though, happiness is only known because of its opposite, but let's not be put off by that. We can always redefine, after all, language is only labelling gone mad. It's not real.

Many fine and informative pieces of research have been made available by people researching this quest and happiness comes about from some things and is taken away by others.

Happiness is taken away by; the unknown, excessive money, a lack of money, spending money on only yourself and not others, loneliness, being too far in the past or projecting too much into the future, being too lost in thought, being sick, having a wandering mind, ...

Happiness comes when; we share experiences, share food, money, forget the past, are unconcerned by the future, have health, love, ... and many more things.

As seen, happiness can come and go, it can be brought about and taken away. Love can be lost, money, health, things which provide security and meaning such as a house and family, can be themselves great potential sources of sorrow. Happiness is, unfortunately, as said, a relative state but one method for happiness that has been passed down through many generations of successful dividing humans is the appreciation of the moment.

Sit comfortably, relax your shoulders, let the strain drop from your brow, and your jaw, and your back and your legs, let your body rest. Breath in slowly and deeply and pull yourself up straight. Focus on that vacant clarity that emerged just then in your head or heart. That's nice, happy peace. That is the appreciation of the moment - a moment with no labels attached to it, no story, no explanations, just a universe being its wonderful self.

A unique thing about that happiness is, while transient, for many of you it is probably gone already as your mind is wandering, it can be re-achieved very simply. You can do it again right now and any time you choose. That happiness is unconditional happiness as it is just happy with the simple, unlabelled emptiness.

Happiness due to something, money, house, love, friendship, can go and be replaced by unhappiness. Happiness due to simple emptiness and recognizing the universe with no labels or storyline - that is an unconditional happiness. Literally requiring no conditions.

A quantum dance is taking place. We know it is because the great scientist who worked hard and diligently to discover and measure it, who only accepted a scientific approach, have proven it. The fact you have a device with GPS, Wi-Fi, a CPU, Lasers and so on prove that there is a quantum world hidden from the large world senses we evolved to sense the natural world. That quantum world, which for now is indescribable - but even a description of it will not change the truth of this only uphold it more - is the dancing universe. And that is what you are.

Sitting empty of storyline and labels you are the universe in the highest evolved state to date - a human feeling unconditional happiness.

When thoughts wander back in, as they will, you are whatever story you believe.

Wandering thoughts.
The above findings of a true and content simple happiness that can be experienced by anyone, from a child to a person on their deathbed is the most important conclusion of this writing and to any human to ever live. Relative paths to happiness can not fulfil us or sustain like the simple resting can and so nothing more need be said. There are though two big outstanding questions that wandering minds like to wrestle with. Beyond unconditional happiness they are Consciousness and Free Will.

Consciousness and Free Will.
The fact of the matter is that you only -think- you are you and in truth you are the universe, the quantum dance, no more, no less. In this way any ideas of consciousness and free will can be simply discounted as stories within the language unfit for the threads which make up the tapestry. The universe as a whole is not consciousness as it can not meaningfully be said to be conscious or unconscious. We don't benefit at all by applying relative terms to the absolute. Things within the story, the story that appears on the tapestry of life can be said to be conscious or unconscious as they are useful terms in our life and language but an important boundary exists. As we enter the world described by language and the story we apply to reality then we must not infer the reality of the things we label. They are just useful labels. No more.

Equally, as we label things within the story then there is no actual entity outside of the story to have free will. There are no agents, no actors to act and no things to be acted upon. In the story, yes, sure, useful. In reality, not at all. The universe is, by convention of language, changing and living out some kind of temporal, causal story. Within that story there are apparent people seeming to make choices but also within that story there is, as mentioned before, the scientific method.

The scientific method as touched upon earlier does not just make claims and hold onto them, it measures, tests, retests, checks and when better tools come about, we recheck afresh. When it comes to ideas of free will and the vivid sensation that we are choosing our actions then the tools and investigations at the disposal of science right now are very powerful, very deep and very accurate. We have learned things that we could never have gotten to by any other method, we have watched the brain at work and the body and we have done this with people just like you and me who have been aware, present, convinced they are free agents, perfectly sane people in test after test have sat with researches and the results are consistent. In test after test and under all degrees of scrutiny researchers had watched the brains of volunteers and have known the forthcoming action the person will make even before the person thinks they have consciously willed the action.

That is: A person will say they have willed an action at a certain point in time but in test after test the researchers watching the brain at work have already known, seconds before, what the person will do. The workings of the brain take place. The "choice" is made. The researches see this occur in the images they are seeing of the brain and can clearly see what is about to happen. A few seconds later the person thinks they have made a choice and then almost straight away they make their move. Supposed free will is an illusion which comes after the event. Naturally evolution would favour people who think they have free will as, take this example. Two people punch you in the face. One cares less and walks away. The other appears to be apologetic and appears to feel responsibility for their actions. Given that neither had free will in either case, even for their reaction after the event, the one who appeared sorry would survive apparent society better.

At the very best all we are doing is justifying whatever took place and as the best outcome we are fooled into thinking we were the agent. In truth no agent even exists.

Sad? Not at all! You are the universe! Relax, breath, sit in the moment, drop the storyline. Happiness is.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

Uniting forces and dimensions

I was watching a ton of physics lectures and while I love the conceptual side I can not meet the demands of the maths. The following idea that came to me then can have no proof, like anything else it is just and idea but I'll share it:

"When gravity splits from the other forces I feel that this moment would be where 11 dimensions unite into 4. So there are 11 dimensions and there is one force, but as the forces divide and manifest as more so too the dimensions unite. You may visualize the 11 dimensions warping together into a 4 dimensional space-time torus at the moment that gravity becomes manifest as a force separate to the other fundamental forces."

I'd love to have the maths to define this idea as then I'd see it in the language it deserves (and likely see it is invalid :))

Without the maths, all of these ideas are farts in the wind unfortunately. Still I love the lectures.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

Absolute disproof of Free Will.

Correct me if I'm wrong as I've heard this is not possible to disprove the existence. I am though convinced this disproof is water tight.

Firstly, while it may be deemed difficult or impossible to disprove of free will, it is certainly impossible to prove there is free will. There is simply no experimental way for a person to follow a set of instructions and prove to themselves that there is a free will. Free will can only be "proved" to exist by unsubstantiated claims or references. It can be disproved though by simple reasoning.

Disproof of something that is in itself unprovable is not so much a necessity so this disproof is only to allow people who believe there is free will to systematically learn otherwise. - Feeling like you have free will is not proof!

Unless one can travel in time then one can not prove that they could perform any act in any other way than the way they did. One can not do an act and claim they could have done it otherwise. Please try if you will.

You may say "In 3 seconds time I will lift my tea cup or I wont."

1, 2, 3. Action.

Now prove that was free will. I don't believe you can unless you travel back in time to the exact situation and re-enact the opposite situation. You can not form an experiment by repeatedly counting to 3 and noting down whether you lift the cup or not. This experiment is not demonstrating free will it is only demonstrating the only possible way things could be.

There is no repeatable experiment to display free will. There is no one-off experiment to prove free will as a one-off experiment can not be proven without then being able to rewind time and demonstrate the opposite result.

The strongest case for free will in compatibility with determinism is the modern compatibilist approach of Dan Dennett and it is almost convincing. While I can never respond to a scholar such as him in the way he deserves I can state that the most valid claim made by him is in-fact unprovable. His case is so;

[paraphrased, I leave the research to you] "Evolution has favoured the ability to move out of the way of a moving car. So then evolution would favour the species which would plan to not be in the way of the car in the first place." [not his words, just a simple approximation of his point] The idea being that free will is a natural creation of evolution and due to its effectiveness in producing longer living beings it has been favoured by natural selection.

There is though no way to prove that this action is the entities free will or a determined response to a given situation. Evolution has certainly favoured reproduction and death avoidance but to say that we "therefore" have free will is no more valid a claim than the opposite claim that free will is an illusion. The latter claim though is further backed up by the very sticky and impossible to disprove point that you can not prove free will without also being able to travel in time. Also, if one could travel in time to prove free will, then there is no way in that experiment to prove that prior action has not influenced the repeated action.

Evolution is a genuine, amazing and proven fact and evolution could well have favoured, and it is very likely it would have, species with large brains which plan to avoid trouble. Great point and very likely true. There is though no proof, even given this, that the entity is exercising free will. It is far more likely that the action it makes are determined. Why should humans be exempt to the determinism on display in the universe? This claim of free will seems to me to be yet another false claim by humankind that it is special.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

Absolute disproof of God.

Correct me if I'm wrong as I've heard this is not possible to disprove the possible existence. I am though convinced this disproof is water tight.

Firstly, while it may be deemed difficult or impossible to disprove of God, it is certainly impossible to prove there is a God. There is simply no experimental way for a person to follow a set of instructions and prove to themselves that there is a God. God can only be "proved" to exist by unsubstantiated claims or references. It can be disproved though by simple reasoning.

Disproof of something that is in itself unprovable is not so much a necessity so this disproof is only to allow people who believe there is a God to systematically learn otherwise.

A widely claimed feature of God is omnipresence. 'One can not hide from or be absent of God.' Due to this God must be everything we know and do not know, entirely infinite, beyond any limit one could possibly place. God is then as much the rapist as the AIDS virus, as the cute puppy, as the smell of a flower. God is as much the meal as it is the turd.

Being omnipresent, the totality, all extremes and their balance, results in a bland nothingness. Any statement to move God from this state must then discredit the claim of omnipresence thus;

"God is not bland and nor is God as much the evil as it is the good."

"So then, God can not be omnipresent."

This may well encourage the following response;

"God is beyond your reasoning."

This though moves God to something indefinable and if indefinable it is not a thing with any qualities so is null and void. If God is given qualities then God is no longer omnipresent and so the so called 'Proof of God' has broken down into a circular failure.

To escape this God may have the attribute of omnipresence removed and to then be redefined as Good or some other set of qualities. I am though clear in my resolve that once God is defined as a set of features but not omnipresence then the initial infinite nature begins to deflate to the finite. Once this deflation is under way there is nowhere to go besides annihilation.

A God that is not omnipresent is then smaller than the infinite, subject to external forces and so not 'all great' or worthy of the name God. Such a thing must have come into being and so then must go. A God that is omnipresent is featureless and valueless as it is as much the good as the bad. There is no escaping this argument that I can see.

So then, not only must this disproof be disproven, so also a valid proof of God's existence must be made. I'll bet my life it never will be.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

Spiritual Atheism 3.0

Solving the spiritual/atheist paradox

First a fact: We all have a natural quest for meaning in our lives.

Second an assumption: You, being an intelligent and rational person, will look towards science for explanations.

If you look towards ancient scripture, then please move on.

If you're still reading, then you are the modern Spiritual/Atheist. You live in a paradoxical place, but you don't fall down here as the truth of the matter is no such paradox.  We just don't explain the situation well enough normally to see that it is actually quite a sane position.

It is natural -- even given our innate desire for answers to our biggest questions -- to discount a "spiritual" approach as fallible and something that will be proven as fanciful once science furthers its goals. Yet, as said, we all naturally have a tendency to wish to know where, why and how we fit into the mystery of life. We perhaps feel that the inner desire is in our evolutionary baggage or excuse it in some other way. If we strongly embrace it, then we may feel it contradicts our scientifically-obtained knowledge and we may indeed feel a split in our Spiritual/Atheist persona.

Spirit, as first defined by the Greeks, was breath and so, no breath, no life. Spirit then evolved as a term to become a thing separate to the living organism, something that may even outlive the body. This most people would agree now is untrue given modern science and so spirituality in this discussion is not a spirit that is a thing in any way but a label. The term Spirituality can be tinged a little and placed alongside Religion as something thinkers should be steering clear of.

As said though there is an inner drive in us all to for answers and many people cannot even get by in life at all without some ad-hoc solutions to theses 'Spiritual' questions. Whether 'Spiritual' is the right word then is in the semantics and how one interprets the word. I'm using the word to point to that part of us all that wishes to know. In this way, I perhaps unfairly include even the most rational scientists in this group as they are driven by this same inner wish for fulfillment. As we progress though, you'll see that in the end I see no genuine divide between all of the groups I've mentioned.

I suppose the greatest perceived split between the Scientific and the Spiritual approaches are of Science's apparent wish to find bits within bits and Spirituality's apparent wish to unite all. Science has been seen to be occasionally unholistic as in its method of wishing to find the bits that make the things, or the cause of the things as in these quests it is seen to be blind to the infinite regress of such an approach. Spirituality, on the other hand, can often be seen to be too wishy-washy as it so easily embraces all into a wholeness, while not processing so called real knowledge or making real testable claims.

Science does though have a well accepted goal of unification and spirituality does care for the parts, the most obvious 'bit' it cares for is the very individual entity doing the inquiring, the one seeking answers. A true Spiritual/Atheist cannot accept things that science has no way of proving or if they do then they should have left this conversation earlier with those folk who look toward ancient scripture for comfort. They can though hold some views that grate with science and seem on the surface unprovable. Let's take some glaring cases that in being so outstanding save us the effort of talking through smaller points.

Let's look at these seemingly unscientific and very mumbo-jumbo-esque statements: "There is no self, All is One, There is no Death."

That should stir the more scientific folk to rise to defence, if not attack. These statements are though quite scientific and our explaining this leads to the unification of the seeming paradox. If I make such bold claims as these though, I must state quite clearly how they are scientific or my last few minutes have been a waste of time.

Scientific claims are "falsifiable" that is, given the description of the method used, anyone with sufficient apparatus can follow the experiment and either agree with the claimed results or disagree. So then: 

"All is One" = the scientifically accepted idea of the Universe. Uni being One and Verse being anything from turning, to song to motion. So then, any scientific person who accepts a universe fully agrees with a spiritual person who sees Oneness. 

"There is no self" = the scientifically provable case that there is no precise place where a person is. There is no one place in the brain, no one organ, no chance of a body surviving without a suitable environment (such as Earth), no ongoing air supply, food source or so on. The apparent self is an ongoing and ever shifting process and not a fixed thing. Self then is either non-existent or ill-defined. Science should have no problem with this and so there is agreement again here with the Spiritual perspective.

"There is no death" = the scientifically provable case of the previously mentioned flow of life, that all is an ever shifting process and not fixed. We could very well say that a self comes to life at a time in space, as science and even common convention may incline us to, but we may also say that the universe, moved, shifted and changed and, for a time, we seemed to be, and for a time, we seemed to no longer be. While science is the sticking point here, it is the very exactness of science which brings for the agreement in the end. It is impossible to define a fixed moment where a fixed person came to be or where one ceased to be. Take the case of the medical coma for such a grey area.

This may sound flowery and unscientific, but if you follow my message rather than the literal wording which, I admit, rubs up against the social norms, then the idea portrayed here is that:

There is a valid stance which accepts all of science, but still fulfills our natural desire for a spiritual explanation. There is a view that fully accepts the findings of science and waits for more to come with no fear of it overturning presupposed unproven claims. There is a view of wholeness that loves the bits, the technology, the medicine, the intellectual wonder that science brings, but is also already complete and validated. A place that is fully content, ever complete in an ocean of change and apparent uncertainty.

There is a person called a Spiritual/Atheist who is not living in contradiction of anything, is not trapped by dogma, is not unfulfilled by life and so left ever seeking. This person is here as much as the next person, lives life, enjoys, learns, suffers, thrills and will die, but is not drawn to the unprovable, in need of the yet-to-be proven, but is simple and takes what their mind creates as life but is free of complex explanation or mystical unprovables.

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Your life in the flow of Dao. To the fundamentals.

The unknown days:
Maybe you cry, maybe you smile.
The first days:
You believe that you were born to a world and you are in the world.
You have consciousness, you are conscious, and you can navigate the world of things and make your own way.
Certain things are good, certain things are bad.
You have the urge to pursue pleasure.
Happiness does not exist without maintained pleasure.
The early days:
We understand the world to a point.
We see forms, we label forms, we know roughly how these come together to form a world and universe.
Our understanding is though incomplete. And we know this.
In time:
We have a desire to understand well enough to be content.
In this pursuit we think that with just a little more knowledge than we have now, we'd be happy.
We feel that we are separate to the world. We can then feel alone, anxious or incomplete.
We can also feel confident, happy, content.
We aim to only have the good side of life.
We have an urge to cultivate a sense of self which is always well.
We feel we can influence ourselves or the world. Pursue pleasure. Develop a high understanding.
We seek for or think we have a technique. But there is frustration here as pleasure like anything, fades.
We are left feeling that we just need the one thing that will provide this lasting clarity, lasting fulfilment.
So we are ever left confused as we never find this lasting method.
In later days:
We can feel great, but it fades. Why can't we maintain?
This suffering pushes the wheel.
Nothing to date has provided the lasting perfection and completion, the fulfilment we seek. So we seek.
There must be something wrong with us! Others seem happy.
We may ask "Why not me?
I don't have lasting fulfilment."
So we look, we try all methods available. Buy books. Get educated. Earn money. Gather possessions. Cast possessions aside. Enter relationships.
We follow methods of those who seem to offer what we need.
Looking for that resting point, that completion. Seeking to end seeking.
As time goes on:
No method seems to bring completion. From modern views to ancient spirituality, nothing fully fits the bill to provide that final completion.
Trying what is on offer may bring some peace. Many ideas may make great sense. There may be excitement or pleasure, there may be rest. But nothing lasts.
Having done all that we see others before us have done, all that was on offer. From the standard education, relationships, money possessions, to the less common methods of say meditation or philosophical investigation we search on.
Ageing days:
From seeking down all paths we may find one common reoccurring message. "All is one". Ideas of the Non-Dual. This can be brought to our attention from any path and we see it is not linked to any method or exclusive to any one teaching but common to all.
Seen through the mind though we see this as a method just as any other so we see this as a way to meet our old desire of seeking to be happy and content always.
Until a sharp bolt: This is not what is on offer!
Non Duality does not put forward a method, a goal. It does not promise endless happiness, but a different view.
Investigated, this new view is challenging. It has you question whether you are separate to the world. It asks you not to just believe and take on ideas but see world from your own view. Just see the world as it is and be honest.
You see from this honest approach that in a world with only happiness that happiness could not exist! Honestly you see that the only thing with genuine fixedness throughout your life has been change.
Moods change, breath is not unidirectional. The world spins, weather changes.
Merging days:
We need not believe anything, only what we see to be real. Change. This is our genuine experience.
Then is holding onto anything or aiming for only one state sane?
Things rise, change and fade. This is true. Isn't it? This is for you to say. Don't just take it. Ask, wait and answer.
Thoughts, moods, ideas, change.
Your body appeared to come and it will appear to go. It has certainly changed. True?
Rhythms, flows, weather, the solar system, universe, is anything fixed and eternal?
Life is movement. Isn't it?
All is moving to become something new.
Holding on does not stop change.
This is your own experience. Isn't it?
A giant rock will be gone one day. It does not disappear in a second, it does it very gradually.
Even the most apparently fixed thing is changing. Nothing is fixed. True?
Labels for things are not the things. True? Your experience? Your truth?
Things are made in the mind by labels. True?
Things do not exist but for the mind. True? Too deep? Not important!
There is a flow. When you came here you had no labels, you learned the labels that the people around you as a child used.
Born elsewhere you'd use different labels. True?
Labels help you get by. True?
As everything changes though labels are not for fixed things but mind made parts of the changing flow.
Questioning Being:
Once the labels are seen to be for parts of a oneness that flows, this is relieving and restful. For me it is. Is it for you?
Not labelled the world still functions just right.
Unlabelled as left, right, over and down. The stream still flows. Right?
Did you plan the best thing that ever happened to you?
Without choosing birth you were born.
Having not made your body or your mind. Seeing that your nature came about before you knew you had one. Can you have navigated life in any other way than the way you did?
Did you even make a single choice? Was it just change and nature in flow and you labelled things in the afterward?
There is only an inexplicable flow. True?
The oneness presents itself.
A world of just happiness would not contain happiness. Does this make sense?
The universe is change, it is a flow. Happiness, sadness, suffering and contentment will all happen. You see?
Simply acknowledging this is wisdom.
You knew this already though. Yes?
This happening came, it was not understood. It was right as it was.
In attempts to describe and understand it became tricky.
Making no effort we see that all happens. Change happens, flow flows, life is.
In our trying and seeking we found difficulties and non arriving. True?
If ice tried with earnest could it flow?
In our not trying, just as we were when we were in the womb, we grew, we changed, we flowed. We got that right. In just that way we see that life is presented without our influence, understanding or effort.
When we say to ourselves that life should not be doing what it is doing. We suffer. But that is normality.
See the fine thread separating wisdom from ignorance?
See that wisdom does not bring eternal pleasure as in eternal pleasure there is no pleasure.
End of seeking:
There is no promise of completion. A complete person simply sees the rise and fall of each thing knowing that things are moving parts of a changing whole.
Wholeness, changes and flows.
Tag! You're it!

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

The hidden magic

Mike our local medicine man has never suffered a cold.

Each time the symptoms stir he mixes; Ginger, garlic, tumeric, cinnamon, cardamon, lemon, black pepper, and honey in hot water and washes down two paracetamol.

He tells us that the ingredients are each so potent that if he misses any one of them out the paracetamol are just as effective.

Malcolm our local councilor has 48 lucky charms and he always selects one at random and hands it to his body guard.

He tells us that each lucky charm is just as good because no matter which he chooses he has never once been attacked by a vampire.

Our local priest, scientist and philosopher all have views on consciousness and they are all fascinating. Each one of them can make a full, clear and convincing case while appearing quite lucid and conscious as they do so. 

There is always at least one dead body a week in our area awaiting burial. I've never heard one's words on the subject. Although I'm convinced they are the only ones making a true case.

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Centered Dao

The mind is relative and dualistic.
The universe is entirely at one.
The mind thinks it sits dead center in the middle of the universe.
All the way to the left is left, and so the rest is to the right.
Up is up and the rest down.
So too with good and bad.
The mind places itself as center and creates flip/flop, to/fro, this/that dualities.
In a universe which is only ever one.

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Alone I walk and who am I, crossing over gates and stiles. I am the freedom all persons seek, I do not know a working week.

If my eyelids rise I'm happily here, if they close I sleep no fear. I am the comfort people desire, no home have I my warmth a fire.

When I'm needing sleep, my bed I meet. When hunger arrives, I'm ready sat to eat.

So this may have sounds of greatness, how then can we emulate this? The answer is simplicity itself, united in oneness there is no me myself.

Suffering is a relative term, your life so far will confirm. Oneness can not be so split, it's all so simple when this is it.

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A New Look at Happiness

A New Look at Happiness.

How an Engineer sees and explains the benefits of meditation.

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The Te of the Tao

They've beaten me to it numerous times and now Scott Bradley has brought to our attention yet another book uniting science and spirituality. From the excellent Tao of Physics by Frijov Capra to the works of the Dalai Lama there are scientists welcoming spiritualists and spiritualists welcoming scientists. I really feel I have such a book bursting its way out of me too but for anyone who's been subjected to much of my ramblings you'll know I'm not a great writer.

For one thing real science needs real explanations so it may well be best left to science to explain itself. Often to convey a point about science as you attempt to tack a path speaking of a wider subject matter you are forced to miss many details. Scientists accuse you of dumbing down the subject or worse of pseudo science. If you go as deep as science requires then you miss your goal of a broader enquiry.
Still one very key point remains for all such discussions. What makes a photon wiggle?

You see science would love us to believe, and says it proves, that there was nothing and it gained complexity and here we are. Consciousness is a result of originally dead and inanimate space dust which configured itself.

Now let me make this clear. I am no creationist! The idea that something chose or designed all of this is certainly no help. It makes the answer more complex and less rewarding and I just can't accept it one bit. Where then do I sit?

Back in the beginning of science there was this nothing, but it had a life an energy, it wiggled. If you say that reality is in the mind and the mind wiggled then you need a mind to come first. Not much use. - This wiggling universe with no one in it. Isn't this wiggle both what scientists say is fact and what they attempt to convince those of a mystical bent does not exist? Isn't the wiggle the Te of the Tao?

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This is not the way!!

This is the way! Go back!

Leave you alone!

I wish it could work you out. 

If only the answer to everything was I.

We got the equation! It was "This = That" after all.

Am I dead yet?

You know I was going to become enlightened, but then I saw that becoming needs to be sometime ahead of now.
I can't be in the future so I saw that I can't "become" enlightened. And thus, so it was. I'll'd never feelded so happied.

In the zoo, the monkey said to himself, Poor bugger. That man trapped behind bars and his job for his whole life is to come give me food and clean my poo. Is it cruel we keep them so?

I sliced through delusion with a tube of glue. Thus no conflicts remained. All was one. Sticky mess.

I thought I hadn't wished that.

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As the river

A snowflake, river, dog and a man entered the city. From the cool sky the snowflake drifted on the breeze and landed on Lau Tzu's cloak as he fished. From the cool river path the dog came sniffing by and Lau Tzu threw her some small fish. From the cold street behind the man approached Lau Tzu and asked if he could speak.
What is it that brought me to be in this cold cold town alone as I am, my business failing, my heart empty?
Did the dog arrive by her nature or her planning? Did the snowflake choose to land here? Did the river wisely select this meandering path through this town?
If you see all as following its nature but yourself as not so then surely you will seem to suffer.

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From 11 dimensional String Theory to Zero dimensional Tao

If you're interested in science at all, especially physics and cosmology, then you'll have heard of String Theory and so then M-Theory. M-Theory is a unification and extension of String Theory which until the M came along had 5 competing versions plus another outsider called Super Gravity. All of the theories used 10 dimensions to describe fundamental strings which vibrated to give the appearance of what, up until now, we thought were discrete, individual, particles.

M-Theory added another dimension, making the total 11, and with mathematics that one person sort of understands and many more try to, unified the 5 string theories and with them the Super Gravity theory into one theory of which they all now constitute parts. What on earth do we do with all of these 11 dimensions and are they meaningful beyond mathematics?

The strings and membranes in M-Theory are described mathematically and they vibrate in this mathematical world within these 11 dimensions. They appear to us in our 4-dimensional space-time as particles, space and time. Can we usefully build this into an understanding that is useful to the day-to-day person? We can. We can offer various paths to this goal even accepting that the theory itself may one day be proven false.

For the mathematically minded there is the theory itself. For the scientifically interested but mathematically limited majority of people there are great books and documentaries and for the few people on earth who think like me there is the following.

Firstly in my rendering, dimensions make up maps that we form in our minds. We draw well in 2 dimensions, we see well in 3 dimensions and if you want to be in the right place when something else is there too then we manage that task well by adding the 4th dimension that we call time. We don't have much use for dimensions above this model and so we can see that what String Theorists are doing is placing information they need to map out, but that does not fit within the 4 dimensional space time, onto new dimensions. Easy in maths but unintuitive to the evolved ape in every day life.

Cosmologically science has measured with great accuracy how the 3 spatial dimensions are accelerating in expansion and from our common perspective we live in a world where the time dimension is also expanding (at about a second per second depending where you look from). Seen together these two expansions are intuitive enough and most people accept some kind of beginning where there was a dimensionless point, followed by an expansion and so the expansion we measure today between galaxies.

From my perspective I see that we need to expand time as more stuff has happened now than had before, so our time dimension needs to be ever larger to accommodate this added information. So I return to the idea that dimensions are for mapping information. More information requires a larger map and so larger dimensions. So, as more stuff takes place, spacetime must grow to accommodate.

An interesting step from some of the same great minds that gave us string theory is to create a slightly more intuitively acceptable description of reality in reduced dimensional space. Using the idea of a Hologram, which is a 2 dimensional creation containing the information of a 3D image, and again with deep maths behind it, they've proven that all that we know may well be explainable and even actually, 2 dimensional, appearing to us as 3 plus time.

Again they may disprove this but this is the method of science. Great ideas and proofs for great minds to work with and even what comes to be wrong is still progress towards greater understanding.

To move again away from the science and into my world that few people apply their minds to I have increasingly come to view reality as zero dimensional. I've arrived here from my own thoughts, intuition and by using ideas from Neuroscience and ancient wisdom. Ancient wisdom is useful as it exposes the thought of great minds which were not contaminated with modern terminology. Neuroscience is useful as it exposes things that are simply impossible to probe with our intuition. Who, without neuroscience could sit, even for a million years, and say that there are as many connections in our brain as there are stars in the known universe? As great as meditation and self enquiry are, this mind blowing conclusion requires tools far beyond those we are born with.

A zero dimensional viewpoint is to say that yes, dimensions are for mapping. We may well map Membranes and Strings in 11 dimensional space as that is the map required to lay out the relevant information. We may well map our own world best in 4-dimensional spacetime as that is the best map for the job at hand. We can accept that while our world looks 3D that our vision is in truth 2D and our brain adds the 3rd spatial dimension of depth by processing this 2D information and the firing of neurons to achieve this adds time. So then a holographic model makes good sense to us so long as there is a perceiver to comprehend this information (naturally our intuition demands this "observer of the information" as that is how we work. Reality beyond our prejudices here may well be very different. It is unlikely there is even one observer in the entire universe). 

So. Why not Zero dimensions? Why when we see 3 but map those 3 through 4? Why, when we visualize 3 but have 2 as input? Why when 2D is processed, bit at a time, as 1D? Are we not truly Zero Dimensional?

You will not naturally accept this. As when you think over the 11 dimensions of M-Theory and find it impossible to picture, you also draw blank at Zero. Continue if you dare on my path through the unprovable.

Where is all of this taking place? Reality is and always has been in your mind. You have one point of attention and this may rest on one thing at a time. Even the best at multi-tasking only focus on one thing at a time, they are just good at jumping between things. One point of attention gives rise to reality. You map reality. You take in one bit at a time. You map it as 2, you form 3 and in doing so you add a 4th. The 4D world is your map of something truly dimensionless.

This is mathematically unprovable and I'm unaware of a version of maths that operates in zero dimensions. Rather than saying that the world is made from constituent parts though, like every theory I know of, and so being open to infinite regress. I begin and end in the same place. The awareness or one-with-no-other, the Tao.

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Did you know you're going the speed of light?

You can't feel it as one does not feel speed they feel acceleration but you are going nearly the speed of light.

Oddly, and the reason I raise this point, is that you're going the speed of light along a rather unexpected dimension, that of time.

Light is going the speed of light in the spatial dimensions so is not going through time at all. Even a photon born at the beginning of the universe has not aged one bit in all of that time. It never moved in time, only in space.

You, you big heavy lump (compared to a photon, sorry no offence meant) and all of that around you that feels solid are not moving in space very much and so as something's total speed must be the speed of light you traverse time. So, all that is around you, the floor supporting you, all that you know to be empty (as science has informed you) seems solid as it is traveling at your pace.

Increase your speed through space significantly and you'll go though time less quickly.

So what of the relationship between this and Tao?

The enjoyment of ceaseless wonder.

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Book 3

Words don't explain it, so don't get hung up on words.

Contentedness is where your place and your minds ideas of where it wishes to be are the same. Happiness and sadness are inseparable. Joined as the night and day skies.

Wishing to be anywhere else but where you are is the greatest conflict one can have. Like a stomach who dislikes digesting you are left sick inside. Who could describe a greater battle, enemies coming closer, than a mind and body in dispute.

What is that before your eyes other than the past? There is nothing you can catch in your eye that has not already occurred. Nothing your senses touch that is new. Witnessing that which is already the case what power does the mind believe it wields? This seems like the deciduous tree looking to un-drop leaves.

The most learned people can speak on the same subject and convince audiences of different interpretations. Seasons flow on. Ideas change. Only a fool would see their whole life as bad due to one fleeting moment. There is change and so as a bird does not pay attention when crossing boarders, don't attach to labels. As the tail of the snake, don't claim you know where you are going. As the tree, don't claim you chose to be where you are.

Here you are. No choice you made could have been otherwise. When things are good then the bad that came before is of just as much importance as the so called good. Labels applied to what is the only case. You can't be in two places, you can only be where you are. The only work to be done is realising the immovable truth of this. When mind accepts where body is then unity is felt.

Contented bliss.

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The zero universe

There are a number of interpretations of the seemingly strange world of quantum mechanics. All versions are mathematically valid and we can't say or rightly guess which is correct:

  • The "many worlds" interpretation says that, whenever two possibilities exist, then the universe splits and both possibilities live out.

  • The "Copenhagen" interpretation says that no outcome is present until a conscious observer looks in. (This is the most widely accepted view in both the fields of real science and, quite by contrast, new age mysticism).

  • The "pilot wave" interpretation says that there is no 'weirdness' and the world is entirely deterministic. Yet to do this it says that there is a little hidden weirdness to the maths. (Though deterministic, this is one of the least favoured by scientists).

There are many more interpretations, but my favourite was recently brought to my attention and it is this:

  • The "zero worlds" interpretation. That the quantum world (that we do not intuitively understand) brought about the classical world that we believe we are within (and so naturally understand). The universe as we see it is classical and so thereby ungraspable as our mind and tools are classical, but the truth we must reach is quantum. That there is no universe at all is a magical perspective and one that my mind and intuition love.

As with my wanderings into Taoism and Vedanta, I very much go for these ideas where there is not even one. Just an infinity at play with no cause or label.

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I salute you, your emptiness

Is it intuitive that when something is consumed by a black hole that the black hole is unchanged and the thing consumed is gone forever?

Yes? No?

Well my intuition says no and science says no also. In fact the black hole is now that fraction larger and the information of the consumed now exists as part of the outer horizon of the black hole.

And so it is with every person. They are not a collection of self and reason but emptiness surrounded by an outer shell giving off information of what they have absorbed.

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Universe is a giant mind

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Stab your own heart

The spiritual quest for happiness in every case creates or is caused by a stark division of mind and self.

An idea of wanting enlightenment, release, happiness, contentment is a terrible disjoint at the core of somebody's being. Where they are and where their mind says they should be otherwise are in stark contrast.

What a pain to have conflict so close at heart!

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Serious Quantum Physisists get philosophical

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Scientifically aligned with Tao

Beyond the level of constituent parts we see the properties of the whole. We don't look at a rock and see the qualities of its weightless constituents, we see the overall hardness, weight and texture of the macro rock. At the constituent level there is no idea of gravity but at the macro there is very much such an appearance. When we look at a person we don't look at atoms, compounds, proteins even, we look at the overall collection, the body. When we ride a train and expect in our minds that the way ahead is smooth then our body sways at the unforeseen effect of the curves and undulations in the track. These so called forces that sway us are not there for the atoms but on our scale they are there.

We can see (and it is very very apparent if you study the science of it) that where parts do not have qualities the bodies they make up do have qualities that emerge on that larger scale. We may see clearly that none of our own constituent parts have ideas of happiness or sadness and that these ideas come about only at the level we exist on. (that is idea1)

The universe is purely deterministic if viewed from the level of 3 spatial dimensions and time. There are parts of the universe which do not seem deterministic at all, for example at the quantum level where things appear in and out of existence. Our level of the universe is made from these smaller and apparently in-deterministic constituents and so people have worked hard to find how this may be. To save the lengthy discussion of how I'll simply put forward the conclusion that they have found that when viewed from their own set of dimensions and space there is perfectly normal determinism at play. Then we may see there is only a deterministic universe and no unknowns.

Given that the universe is purely deterministic then you have no choice but to accept that you don't do you. (that is idea2)

Both of the above ideas have very strong scientifically testable truth and so:

Idea1) At the small scale constituent level there is no happy or sad. These ideas come about at the macro level of the complete human being.
Idea2) An underlying world of determinism brings each and every person to be doing what they are doing and being where they are being at any time.

The world and your place and actions in it are entirely determined but on the gross level of the human a certain quality emerges that does not exist elsewhere. A kind of inner monologue that chases the event tries to decide if it likes what is going on or not. This voice though does not have any say on the world as the world is produced from parts, purely deterministic, that do not have this meta quality of seeing the events or the thoughts just after they happen and categorizing them.

A happy person is said to be one who is in a situation that their inner voice is content with that which is seen to going on around them - as at this time there is no conflict between what is happening and what "ought" to be happening.

So then is your inner voice determined too like the rest of the universe or can you move to alter to a way where you are always content no matter what the determined world offers you.

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Chuang is dead!

Upset about his death you must also be upset over his birth as the birth guaranteed nothing else so surely as death.

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Looking back to an unknown future

As I look forward I see the past. A telescope takes me to the deep past but even that before my naked eyed is the past. Gone already, can't be changed. The future wells up behind, from inside me. Unknown.

Seeing the future is unknown and that the past is already in front of me I sit here in the now. Now pure and real.

The only time apart from now, any time we may think of is only that, a thought. The not now.

Two times are know. Now and not now. No others. And only one can be said to have reality.

Any problems felt right now have nothing to do with now. They have been imported from the not now. Either the past or the future and we know we can have no effect on either.

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Einstein's Intuition

I was always interested in science and physics was my second favourite class at school. My dyslexia was discovered too late to be remedied and I was pushed by the condition away from maths (so also physics) and into design. Still my interest in physics remained.

I did not read much at all and the first time I really read a book I was 28 years old. I enjoyed this book and it lead me to read more. A late night conversation with a friend lead him to recommend The Tao of Physics to me as he said it would suit the way my mind worked. While the book was intended to educate spiritual people in science it had a reverse effect on me, it opened me up to Eastern Philosophy.

After a near 10 year love affair with Eastern Philosophy I found my interest being drawn back to physics and modern cosmology and just lately after becoming a bit of a YouTube science junky I hit across a new line of thought. That's a little wrong. I hit across many many new and wonderful lines of thought but one in particular resonated deeply with me.

In reading this latest book I've in the past week been enlightened more than in any equivalent week where I studied Eastern Philosophy. I've been educated, refreshed and awakened. The book has rekindled my love of the scientific method, encouraged me to stir small stagnating pools of my mind and return life to them. Where I had taken on ideas that didn't feel quite right in recent years but were the best I or others could offer I've now got genuine answers and where I had my own funny little theories here and there I now have a complete framework.

For anyone who thinks of themselves as scientifically inclined then I'd passionately recommend this book. The book though is not yet available and I've only been fortunate enough to read it as I expressed my interest to the author and so was sent an early draught copy.   

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Zero point appears as dimensional reality.

Matter itself is a distortion. Everything appears as it is but nothing is. There is a zero point and there is a perceiving of all that is.

Move and you don't. Weigh and you don't. Act and you don't.

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Our Little Galaxy

This is one of the best documentaries I've seen on the Milky Way.


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The blessed one

Blessed with stupidity he lived a life free from stress or worry.

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Explaining Tao

As we can never remove ourselves from Tao to see it, so we can never explain Tao

As we are Tao expressing itself, so everything we do explains Tao.

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No Big Bang No Creation No God

No Big Bang No Creation No God. Just an infinite dynamic universe that has always been.

No God, No Theoretical Science.

Theoretical Science disproved by Measurable, Experimental open minded Science.

Good stuff.

We just don't bloody know do we? Fascinating all the same.

More of the good stuff here Plasma Electric Universe

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I wonder what you can find me that is fixed. Perhaps a heavy lead ball. Perhaps a crystal. Let's take a crystal right in the heart of the universe. Is it fixed and unchanging? It isn't. It's held in your mind. It's moving relative to something. It reflects that which moves. Its constituent parts, though well formed, are in flux.

How about a lump of steel in the middle of a large slab of concrete. You stand right beside it and hold it in your glare. Fixed? No, not at all. Seen from the moon, you and the lump are whizzing around, not fixed at all. So how about the clouds? No! Of course not! We know they move and change. A mountain? No. Forever changing on its surface. A river? Nooooo. A foundation stone supporting the great pyramid? No.

Nothing is fixed, nothing is unchanging.

You are change witnessing change. You are growth witnessing growth. You are flowing witnessing flowing.

While we know nothing but change, fascinate our minds with nothing but change, we are strangely caught in games of attempting to fix the world both in form and idea.

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At peace

There you are at peace.

Then a thought.

Peace disturbed.

So another thought.

"Perhaps if I do this, I'll find peace."

Then actions.

More thoughts.

Actions and thoughts and plans aimed at peace in the future.

Yet peace is where you began.

When the thought had not entered.

Let thoughts go. No actions required. No plans.

Peace is always here.

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your enlightenment

Your enlightenment dies with you.

Your enlightenment dies with (the concept:) you.

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I'm the Universe, aged 1

Around 2 years after my mother gave birth, I was born. I had been referred to as an individual with a name for all of the time previous to this but only around that age had my brain learned that I existed. Yes, I learned that I existed. Self consciousness came about some considerable time after the body had already managed incredible feats such as development, respiration, circulation and sense formation. Not only did I have fully working vision and more but I had eaten meals and been the star of many photographs before I even had a self. So now here I was, a separate individual. Not because an individual had been born but because some time after a birth, a brain learned that it was an individual.

So a universe bubbles away for infinity and within that these forms come about who, with a little time, learn that they are some one.

But for the learning in our earliest years, we're the universe. 

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Song of Tao

It's only ever, no matter what it seems, one song.


Accepting all is greatness but even your resistance is perfect harmony.

My previous, my life and my death are not mine as yours are not yours. Being as we are, not separate beings but being, we are the uni verse.

The understanding mind will manage things great and small. Being will be it's greatest pleasure.

The universe has evolved electrical impulses, an alive brain and pulses. Conscious as this is, it's not "you". You didn't do a thing.

Isn't being this star of aliveness special enough? Without the belief "I can do"?

We are the totality.

Your body is not the body you were born with. Your self identity is now not the same. Changing as they are, in a universe where all we witness is change, how do you hold on to the fixed principal of "I" and deem it so real?

Self identity is born around 18 months after birth, no wonder it is tough shaking it. Yet it is so easily done, each time you sleep.

Meditate yourself to death each night you sleep and then death is easy. When death is easy, life is great peace.

Space, time, force, energy or matter could not exist in isolation from one another. Together they form 5 sides of a cube. The 6th side is being. You know this to be true as your consideration of them took being and being would be empty but for them.

Space contains matter and, inspect closely, matter contains much space. They are not separate things. Being acts through time to witness all of this, there is no separation or distinction, they are one thing, not one has reality alone.

Dimensionally you are the zeroth dimension. By your being you are all dimensions. In all you are oneness. The one universe is you. How else could you be without everything? How could everything be without you?

Self identity born of evolved nuero-interactions is not your true identity or your true self. It came about, fades each night and will surely cease. Your self identity is guaranteed an end. Your self identity is born of complex interactions and it has no center, no "point" where it exists. What is permanent and ever present is you. The one song.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

Enlightened Times Have Always Been

In times of old we stood and looked at the world and the sky above us and we thought the world went on forever, endless, we thought this was it. In those times there were enlightened folk even if their knowledge was limited.

In later times we found the world was round and we thought that our galaxy went on forever, we thought this was it and we stood amazed at our place in it. In these times there were enlightened folk even with limited knowledge.

In more recent times we found that we lived on the edge of a vast galaxy with a billion stars and we found that our galaxy was one of billions floating in a space, still infinite and limitless as we used to believe with the earth and our galaxy, but now at a level beyond the minds abilities. And with this limited knowledge still there were enlightened folk.

Now we push to prove or accept that the seemingly infinite universe is actually one of many, floating in other dimensions, with whole new laws of physics. Knowing for sure now our knowledge is limited and may even never reach a full understanding there are still enlightened folk.

The majesty of the cosmos has always filled us with awe and we have achieved incredible feats in understanding what we do. We will achieve more too. Some have the drive to achieve complete understanding and they'll keep on blowing our understanding minds in their findings. As science pushes the boundaries of the cosmos so too they delve into the mind and the fabric of space, time and matter. This is naturally fascinating as we are all interested in who and what we are.

Useful to the process and existing without the big answers is a feeling of inner comfort and as has been shown, many have gone to their grave with an understanding, while obviously incomplete when it comes to the scientific world view, complete in a most valid way. This was a contentment known as enlightenment.

In all of the improvements in our understanding some people were able to sit comfortably, amazed and impressed as we all are with our place in the cosmos and the whys and the what fors, they did not take solace in religion or by accepting the completeness of the current scientific paradigm, they found wisdom and completeness inside themselves.

Seeing the world as what it is from our own shared perspective, a place of change with good and bad, they were at peace.

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Your outer voice

Out loud now: say "hello"
Internally now: think the word "hello"

When you said "hello" the sound came from your mouth and reverberated in your head (naturally, you're quite used to this so excuse me pointing out the obvious).
So then when you thought the word wasn't it natural to assume that the thought happened in your head? This is because to think a word you internally replicate the sensation of saying one.

Did the thought though happen in your head?

Isn't it quite possible that as you are so used to hearing spoken words reverberating in your head that you are then tricked into thinking that thoughts arise there too?

If we step onwards here to the weird and speculative we seem to solve the infinite regression problem of your self conscious centre. When philosophers, neuroscientists and the like delve into this tough realm they are truly at loss as to where the self resides. Are they looking in the wrong spot as they are hearing their thoughts in their head?

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The Big Bang - Where and When

It didn't happen "When" as there was no time.

It didn't happen "Where" as there was no space.

Time and space are dimensions and there are further dimensions beyond the ones we perceive, so "it didn't happen where or when" as there were no dimensions.

So the term "happen" is meaningless.

It was not the "cause" and the afterward the "effect" as, being dimensionless, causality did not exist.

The human mind has evolved to perceive causality but without the use of the mind, causality does not exist.

Following causality back then to an inferred start point is false method and will only, at best, satisfy the mind and not provide a true answer which must in fact be absent of causality as it is absent of dimensions.

Many of us are happy with the idea of the universe being infinite. If not happy with infinite then we must be left wondering what the finite universe is within, and so we must also deduce from there infinity.

To visualise the Big Bang many minds will picture empty space and a zero point exploding. This is what nearly all animations show also but is absolutely false.

The universe as is, by our best current measurements, "expanding and accelerating in its expansion" so all lumps of stuff, galaxies and so on, are becoming more widely spaced. The galaxies are not expanding though. We visualise this by placing coins on a rubber sheet to represent galaxies as we stretch the sheet to show space expanding. Oddly though we have witnessed galaxies in space colliding and we predict our nearest neighbouring galaxy will collide with us. When galaxies collide though it is rarely catastrophic as most stuff is so far apart that very little hits anything else. We result in either one larger galaxy or the two carry on with just a change in shape.

So we see some galaxies collide but the large majority spacing apart. Not just moving apart but accelerating apart. We naturally infer with our minds that what is now big and expanding must have once been small. Yet we say the universe is "infinite" and not "finitely big and getting bigger".

We model the expansion as something growing out into an infinite space but this is not the case. As with the Big Bang which did not happen in space but gave birth to space, so the idea of 'stuff' now expanding into nothingness, is a false view.

What we are shown by cosmological observation is that space is coming into being. What we are shown from quantum theory is that empty space is not empty and it teems with virtual particles coming into and out of existence. A very curious thing which has come about from these two curious things is that: When two virtual particles come into being they then rush to annihilate but if space is accelerating in its expansion they can often be left in existence and so space coming into being then brings about "something from nothing" and it leaves behind particles, stuff and energy.

Perhaps then The Big Bang was not such a "bang" in a "place" (as we have seen, no place or time for that bang could exist previous to it) but instead the first calculated occurrence of expansion, where nothing came to be something.

Our minds work very well with dualism. As we saw earlier they love the dualism of cause and effect. We can then easily see how "nothing" naturally leads to "something". This model then is perhaps acceptable as it fits our predisposed framework, it is also though, measurably, true.

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Nothing Coming to Something - Why so much Dark Matter?

Something from Nothing is how we came to be and when we look at the Something we measure it as: a small percentage Matter, A larger percentage "Dark Matter" and an even larger percentage "Dark Energy".

Some wonder why the seemingly important Matter (what 'matters' after all) is so small a constituent in the known universe. We know though that Dark Matter does not react with much. In collapses, Matter heats and reacts and explodes, Dark Matter though doesn't bother.

We can see then that if there were a Big Bang that Matter would react furiously and react and be carried along. Most matter then, and why we find so little in the known universe, is way way way out in space. Beyond current measurable distance. The Dark Matter just hung around.


I have no calculations to prove this before you accuse me of the same. It's a theory.

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mu can't have it all

One of the supposed fundamental particles in modern physics is a Tau. The Higgs Boson though "permeates the whole universe".

It didn't happen in our universe but must surely have occurred in another one where science chose the name Tao for the Higgs Field. That would have been cute. But then in that universe Lau Tzu may have named the unknowable "tweet" and not Tao.

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Higgs Boson Found

With a likelihood of, very very high, we have found the Higgs Boson.

Using the analogy of a grain of sand per interaction;
Enough sand to fill a large sports stadium was used.
Wet your finger and dip it in the sand and that's the useful data.

An excellent analogy emerged as to what the Higgs does. It is responsible for mass, but not your mass. It is responsible for mass on the tiny scale, boson mass. The excellent analogy was that of fame. Place news reporters equally spaced over a room. Were someone with the fame equivalent to the weight of a photon to pass through the room then nearly none of the reporters would notice. Were a person with fame equivalent to a heavy particle to pass through the room then the news reporters would gather around it as it passed through, the more fame the more trouble it would have passing by. Equate this fame in the sub atomic world to a field of some kind.

Now the scientists need to delve further, find more and more information, and try to find exactly what Higgs this is and also to find more parts of the puzzle to complete the ever solidifying "Standard Model" of physics.


My own theoretical ideas on what we have is something that seems to stretch or warp space. A curve in space would then cause "weight" in the Einsteinium sense where things roll into this warped area.  

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I need faith!

What I mean is an "I" needs faith.

1) A strong reason for religion is a promise of comfort in and after death.

2) You can not have a fear of death if you have no self awareness.

3) So it stands, bar the laying out of the scientific proof, that self awareness brings forth a fear of death and so a need for religion.

Onwards to my point...

Not a strictly Taoist view but one I have drawn from Taoism is that we, I, me, you, rock, bird, protein, snail, stone, atom, rain drop, star, billion cubic light years of space, cupcake, cow turd, politician even, are expressions of an unbroken whole. Hmm, OK, it is pretty Taoist but for the phrasing.

What I have seen from scientific commentary is that we use the model of our times to describe the picture; The mind was like a TV processing signals, then like a computer crunching programs and data and now they say it is like a network of neurons comparable to the internet. The description will surely alter again with our next technological step.

From my view of oneness though I will not take such a model, I'll instead say that the whole universe is, as one, leading to us all seeming to be, and in this way "I" is not someone right here who'll die. I was not even born. Being unborn and with then no local self, I can't die and so have no calling to religion as a saviour. I'm an expression of an ever shifting and changing universe. The forms are fleeting, temporary and not real in themselves. They are a magical shifting oneness.

Yet somehow this sounds and smells a lot like a dogma to shield me from death. I do though completely doubt my own existence as a separate autonomous entity. I doubt free will, I doubt what makes a human is limited to electrical fizz in a lump of meat. I see in the science I study and the world I see around me a vast interwoven fabric, threads going back so far in time they fade but which carry information vital to life as it is now, threads wrapping sideways through other species, chemical behaviours, properties, essential, unchangeable - Unchangeable that is because were any one apparent thing just a little different, then everything would be different. The way things are is due to everything, ever, and to come.

In this way "I" is not the body, mind, neural network, it is the universe. In this way I was unborn, have constantly shifted form, and can't die. If this is religious dogma then it is certainly a unique way of fooling myself! I don't mind at all as the "I" apparently being fooled is the one I don't believe has a true existence anyway!

When I look at the huge contradiction between science, which says we are an illusion cast up from an interaction of neurons (something I find has great merit but is, as yet, incomplete) and common religion, which says we are an eternal soul which will live on beyond the life of the body (something I ridicule and laugh at) then I find my own stance, while unproven and open to criticism, quite magical.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao