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

A New Look at Happiness

A New Look at Happiness.

How an Engineer sees and explains the benefits of meditation.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

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?

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

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.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

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.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

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.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

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.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

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.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao

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.

Tao Wow | Daily Cup of Tao