Selected Correspondence Peter
PETER: Hi Everyone,
Just a bit more from the meta-physicians of mathematics, theoretical physics and cosmology. I thought I would post some quotes on the subject of infinity as they reveal much about the tortured imagination of the human mind. Imaginative flights of fantasy, such as we see in children’s fairy stories, are well documented, fervently believed in, passionately defended and financially well supported in the ‘adult’ worlds of science, religion and philosophy. Much convoluted and twisted thinking has gone into making up stories about ‘what lies beyond’ – whether it be beyond the stars in the physical world, or beyond death in the spiritual world. The theoretical scientists realm is supposedly that of the physical world but when they encounter infinity – the fact that this physical universe has no limit, no ‘outside’, no edges, nothing ‘beyond’ – they eagerly succumb to the spiritual or ethereal.
I remember, it was a stunning realization when I contemplated on the fact that the universe is infinite. No outside ... this is it. And I am nowhere in particular – there is no bottom left-hand corner in infinite space. And there is no room for God.
I had had previous glimpses of the infinitude of the universe while sleeping out at night in the desert when the stars alone were as bright as a coastal full moon night. Or the evening when we stopped to camp and sat out on deckchairs to watch the sunset. As the sun was setting to a huge golden-red ball I turned to see the moon rising behind me – an equal sized golden-red ball on the opposite horizon. What a sight, I didn’t know which way to look, such was the magnificence of it all.
The actual leaves any paltry imagination for dead.
So, on to some quotes from – Paul Davies, The Edge of Infinity, Beyond the Black Hole, Penguin 1994, Chapter 2 – Measuring the Infinite
Paul Davies, The Edge of Infinity, p. 22
The ‘end of the universe’, in spacetime terms, is an illusion built upon an illusion. Spacetime is an imaginary ‘other dimension’ invented by Mr. Einstein – so whatever is theorized to happen in spacetime is twice removed from the actual universe (with actual time and actual space) that we live in. All this nonsense is based on the stubborn and instinctual fear of acknowledging the fact that the physical universe is infinite and eternal – no other worlds, no other place, no other dimensions.
A little disclaimer he slips in here but then proceeds to apply his mathematical theories to the real world – predicting the existence of black holes and singularities in the physical universe despite a stunning lack of any factual evidence.
‘... impossible to believe, yet they are true’. ‘True’ is a word that is currently so abused as to be useless. Christians believe the virgin birth was true, NDA-followers believe that inert planets hurtling through space affects their moods and behaviour, Trekkies believe in Warp-speed and wormholes, and Mr. Davies believes in an edge to the infinite universe. Strange tales, but ‘true’ ...?
I hate to quibble about words, but Mr. Oxford says of infinity –
So how is it almost impossible to make it larger? Could it be by inventing a plug hole in the middle – a black hole – so we can all disappear down there one day? Or how about a hole that ‘new stuff’ comes flowing in one day? Of course, you would have to bend space a bit around the holes but ... then again ... why not? It is just a theory after all ... truly ... honestly ...
How not to win friends in the church. Mr. Davies has no such trouble, as he collected a cool million dollars in 1995 for the ‘Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion’.
Questions ‘frequently asked by children’ and adult cosmologists? Answers provided by science fiction writers and cosmologists – if there is a difference between the two. The only difference between Paul Davies and George Lucas is that one writes science fiction books and the other makes science fiction movies.
As for the cosmological ‘answers’ – beyond the stars we see from earth have come pictures of vast nebula thousands of light years across, fantastic arrays of particles, rocks, gases, storms, eruptions, explosions, lights, clouds. All actual – requiring no imagination. All obvious – raising no question. All perfect – requiring no solution.
Yep, insanity and madness prevail. And the passion and fervour of Holy Mathematics is indicated by the phrase – ‘a paradise from which no one will drive us’. Their search for God, ‘eternal and perfect’, involves trust, faith and belief in concepts that are held to be truths, all firmly based on the quick-sand of imagination. An imagined new dimension – spacetime that bends, folds and warps, that has holes and peaks; an imagined time that can run backwards, split into two or more and even loop the loop, imaginary numbers that are unreal, irrational and illogical; imaginary matter that is negative, uncertain, anti or virtual, particle and/or wave or even string-like.
And from this mish mash come theories which are ... ‘impossible to believe, yet they are true’.
‘True’ they may be called, but factual they are not – nobody has found a black hole, or a worm hole, let alone a naked singularity! It was nuclear chemists and engineers who developed nuclear energy and the bomb. According to the book,
i.e. he didn’t think it was possible. Further, Edward Teller states
The Americans got to the moon with Newtonian physics and engineering, not Einsteinian theory.
The more I read and understand Mr. Einstein, the more mystical and Guru-like he becomes.
It’s all mythical tales and wishful thinking of anywhere but here, and anytime but now. Anything to avoid the fact that we are mortal and that neither goodness nor Godness can make us happy and harmless. Anything to avoid the instinctually-sourced malice and sorrow of the Human Condition. Anything to avoid the fact that this is the only moment one can experience being alive. Anything to avoid being here and now in this very actual world, happening at this very moment.
What a waste to bury one’s head in the sand or in the clouds when what is actual is perfect, benign, delightful, magnificent, tangible, tactile, tasty, vibrant, alive, immediate and right here on this planet.
And it is the destiny of all committed actualists to experience this actuality 24 hrs. a day, every day. To sacrifice one’s self – to psychologically and psychically self-immolate, in order that the perfection and purity of the infinitude of the physical universe can become actualized in a human being.
In order that the universe can experience itself as a human being.
PETER to Alan: Another musing I had the other day concerned the common view of the word freedom as used in spiritual circles. Freedom is seen as an event, usually termed Enlightenment, whereby one miraculously escapes from the illusion of the real world, its problems, concerns and worries and is magically re-united with one’s Source from whence one came from originally. Thus ‘I’ am no longer lost, lonely and frightened for I have come Home and am overwhelmed by feelings of Divine Love. Thus one leaves the ‘real’ world and emerges into the ‘divine’ world – an illusion based on an illusion. The process usually undertaken is to devote oneself to living the ‘divine’ life, in preparation for a final ‘crossing’ over whereby one becomes Divine. This is, of course, all played out in the fantasy world of passionate feelings and has not a fig to do with the actual. Enlightenment is but a shift of identity from normal, afraid of death to Divine and believing one’s Self to be immortal.
The path to an Actual Freedom is to devote one’s life to being the universe experiencing itself as a flesh and blood human being, and if undertaken with scrupulous integrity, will inevitably and inexorably lead to one’s self-immolation. This final act will be one of self-sacrifice for it is evident from the Pure Consciousness experience that only ‘I’ stand in the way of the perfection and purity of the universe being experienced as this flesh and blood body called Peter. This full-blooded devotion, as in ...
... has recently resulted in heady glimpses and experiences of the infinitude of the physical universe. These experiences of vastness and limitless freedom offer tantalizing previews of an inevitable destiny after ‘my’ extinction and have had the unmistakable ring of the authenticity of my first ‘self’-less PCE. The other clue as to their genuineness is the recognition of the seductive parallel of the Altered State of Consciousness whereby ‘I’ am tempted to instinctually grab to become the experience. Thus, ‘I’ become infinite and eternal, whereas in the PCE it is startlingly clear that it is the universe that is infinite and eternal, and what I am is this mortal flesh and blood body, well able and equipped to think and reflect and go oooh and ahhh at the perfection and purity that is obviously apparent when ‘I’ cease to rule the roost. But that won’t happen to me – it’s but a cheap cop-out once you have tasted the actual.
These glimpses are the direct result of this boots and all approach and send a thrill up one’s spine, a tingling in the skull, or an involuntary wobble of the head. It’s fascinating to see that the fear that was there in the days of thinking about the end of ‘me’, or trying to imagine the end of ‘me’, is now replaced by a physical thrill as in – this is what I am doing, or this is what is happening. This is no esoteric explanation and has parallels in the prosaic activities that involve fear or danger whereby, when you get to the stage of actually doing something rather than thinking or worrying about it, one is then too busy with the doing of it that one has no time for fears or worries. And it’s not as though the experience is frantic, or too much – I am at present doing normal things like doing a job, earning a living and reporting, as accurately as I can, on what is going on inside with ‘me’ as it happens. Utterly down-to-earth, normal and anonymous.
Cute, Hey.... And what a hoot it is at the cutting edge.
RESPONDENT: I particularly liked the way Richard explained AF as being like a blind man who has his other senses heightened... as if our energy is concentrated when appropriately focused or perhaps when our inner conflicts are not allowed to detract from the purity of the moment...???
PETER: My experience of the sensate-only experience of the PCE is that there is no psychological or psychic entity whatsoever inside this flesh and blood body. There is no ‘I’ being ‘focused’ or thinking rightly or concentrating on the senses. There is no inner conflict for there is no ‘inner’ at all. With no ‘inner’ there is then no ‘outside’ to experience as feeling separate from or feeling at-one with. All affective, self-centred feeling disappears as if by magic as do all self-centred neurotic thoughts. One is able to think, and my thoughts are usually one of amazement at the physical, magical fairy-tale like universe. The contemplation upon the fact that we sit somewhere on of a huge lump of rock that hurtles through space orbiting around a sun that gives life to plants and animals, that there are cycles like days, seasons, tides, life-cycles, that there are land masses, oceans, mountains, rivers, snow, rain, that the universe is infinite and eternal and that it is all happening right here, in this very moment. The senses are literally on stalks, imbibing the sensory input from all that is happening around – and we can see it, smell it, hear it taste it and touch it and we are made of the same stuff as all around. There is no separateness, rather one is directly and sensually intimate with everyone and everything. In the PCE one is literally the universe experiencing itself as a human being for there is no self, and definitely no Self, as an entity inside the body affectively experiencing an outer world – let alone passionately imagining an inner world.
The other thing that is startlingly obvious in a PCE is that amidst this always present perfection and purity of the actual world, the human species battle it out with each other to the point of waging horrendous wars, resent having to be here at all and are generally miserable to the point of depression.
When I met Richard I decided to devote my life to the eradication of the Human Condition within me. I wanted to live the experience of the PCE – the self-less state of purity and perfection – 24hrs. a day every day. So, I rolled up my sleeves and got stuck into the doing of it. It was so liberating to be able to do something about myself and my behaviour and not allow myself to be blindly led, not to believe what others told me was true, not to merely do what everyone else was doing simply because everyone else was doing it, not to keep doing things that didn’t work and not to be automatically driven and run by my instinctual passions. To become incrementally free of the Human Condition. The amazing thing about the doing of becoming actually free from malice and sorrow is that one becomes more happy and more harmless on the way. And one literally comes to one’s senses such that the senses do become heightened, one thinks less neurotic thoughts and feels less passionately driven by one’s instinctual drives. It is a win, win and more win situation on the path to actual freedom.
RESPONDENT: Not knowing: To acknowledge the fact that there still is very much that our human minds can’t grasp and that we might never comprehend fully. To be open for the unthinkable possibility.
PETER: This physical universe is infinite – as big as it gets – and eternal – without a beginning or end – so it is inconceivable that humans will ever know all there is to know. Already the published discoveries are so much more than is possible for any one person to know. Even in one field of science or practical endeavour the amount of study, research and papers published would exceed the capacity of any one person to comprehend, let alone absorb.
But 3,500 years on from the ancient Wise Ones we do know that praying to God, or believing in and surrendering to God-men, has not brought peace to earth, quite the contrary.
Up until now spiritual teachings have been impossible to question openly and sensibly for they were jealously guarded by the priests and their fervent followers, and even then to abandon belief would have meant going back to a God-less existence in the ‘real’ world, bereft of any hope. Thus it is that people usually swap beliefs – Western for Eastern, Heavenly God for Mother Earth, etc. – rather than stop believing in God by whatever name.
Thanks to the Internet we can now conduct our own independent research as to the facticity of Ancient Wisdom and trace it back to its original teachings, we can compare the many Truths on offer and stop the game of pretending that not knowing is a sign of wisdom rather than of stubborn ignorance. There is simply no excuse for not knowing what the Truth is, and when this is discovered each of us is then capable of taking a position as to whether to keep believing in it or abandoning it.
We humans now have enough information at our fingertips to stop ‘not knowing’ and begin to know about life, the universe and what it is to be a human being. This knowledge, when combined with the experiential knowledge of the human potentiality as experienced in a pure consciousness experience, is the key to freedom from the human condition.
‘To be open for the unthinkable possibility’ usually means to be open to God, by whatever name, or ‘to be open’ to all sorts of spurious meta-physical theories, such as space-time continuums, dark matter, black holes, cyclic time, time reversing universes, parallel universe, etc.
RESPONDENT: These qualities/values can be very useful when investigating in a serious manner. I don’t think they contradict with empirical studies either, they could be used when formulating theses and in theoretical science for example. They might not be that useful in every execution of a study in the laboratory, then it’s of course our rational ‘side’ of our minds that are good at structuring and comparison that rule.
PETER: It is our fellow human beings, the practical scientists, chemists, engineers, explorers and the like that have given we humans very useful things. The Gurus, philosophers, theoretical scientists and the like have given us nothing but theories, beliefs, concepts, ideas, scenarios, dreams, nightmares, hope and hopelessness.
As I began to abandon the spiritual world, I serendipitously discovered someone who had abandoned Enlightenment and had worked out a ruthlessly effective empirical method for eliminating one’s social identity and all of one’s instinctual passions. Give me something that works over an ideal or a theory any day.
RESPONDENT: Don’t you think that these qualities actually could help in experiencing the PCE? If one is going to be able to perceive life directly as it really is instead of trying to force reality upon us (ASC) I think that we have tremendous use of humility and openness.
PETER: If one begins by feeling humble and then goes searching for an experience of something other than grim reality, I suspect one will end up finding a Greater Reality to feel humble to and feelings of gratitude will come sweeping in. By being ‘open for the unthinkable possibility’ any form of impassioned imagination is possible.
However, if your search is for purity and perfection and you keep whittling away at your beliefs, then one day while wistfully contemplating and softly relaxing, you might notice a sensuous delight, a vibrancy in things around you, a perfection and purity, a silence and infinitude beyond imagination. But be careful not to seize the experience as yours or you will feel the chest swell and the head swoon and in will flood passionate imagination to replace actual delight.
PETER: Thus far humans have attempted to escape from being a thinking ‘self’ seemingly trapped within a mortal flesh and blood body and shifted their identity to becoming ‘who’ they instinctually feel they are – their soul, atman, spirit, Self, Isness, etc. – an immortal ethereal being, ‘just passing through’ this illusionary physical world.
To actively undertake the process of one’s own ‘self’-immolation is a third alternative that results in the progressive eradication of both the instilled social identity and the encoded instinctual identity, thus causing the cessation of the instinctual passions of fear, aggression, nurture and desire. This is not ‘the creation’ of anything new but the deliberate elimination of all that is illusionary, instinctual, ancient, rotten and redundant.
What remains at the end of this process is ‘what’ you are, not ‘who’ think and feel you are.
RESPONDENT: Thanks Peter for clarifying your dis-covery of the Truth of Being that can only be experienced NOW.
PETER: No, what I am talking about is the ending of being. The search for the Truth of Being is an utterly selfish pursuit for Meaning by the psychological and psychic entity that dwells within the body. Having discovered a self-gratifying Truth the entity then attempts to live this inner truth NOW, moment to moment, in the actual physical world, with varying degrees of success. The only way this can be pulled off successfully, as every spiritual seeker knows, is to dissociate completely from the physical world. Thus the search for Truth of Being is a process of turning away, turning in, letting go, withdrawing, disidentifying, and finally complete dissociation aka Enlightenment.
There are three ways a human being can experience being here –
PETER: Dear Metta,
I read with interest your description of your spiritual awakening on your web-site and was taken by your very precise description. Few who have had these experiences are willing to be honest about what actually happens. I suspect it serves them better not to expose the fact that ‘I’ the self lives on through the experience to become ‘Me’ the Self who is both messenger and saviour. What saved me from this delusion was an experience I had where, like you, I had a glimpse of the perfection and purity of the physical universe, the infinitude, the sparkling paradise we live in as human beings. But, and I had a ‘but’ and I have written about it in my journal of the time:
So a different interpretation can be made from the experience you had. Acknowledging the suffering and violence endemic in human behaviour on the planet and seeing that this fear and aggression, which rages in the heads and hearts of every human being – and then realising it needs to stop, if this fair paradisiacal planet is to be free of war, rape, torture, poverty, repression, domestic violence, child abuse, guilt, shame, sorrow and despair. And the only thing ‘I’ can do is rid myself of malice and sorrow in me. To self-immolate is the only solution, the only sacrifice ‘I’ can make to put an end to this hell on earth that we find ourselves born into. To face it squarely and not merely escape into some fantasy where everything is all right as it is, you just need to ‘imagine’ a better world, fully realise it as another reality (or Reality) and swan around in its bliss.
PETER: Just a little comment on what Mr. Watts has said,
RESPONDENT: In a certain sense
Zen is feeling life
instead of feeling something about life. Alan Watts
PETER: It is another of those poems that clearly point to the spiritual path as being a feeling path to an ‘inner world’. One becomes a ‘watcher’, ‘feeling’ one’s way in the world and as such is cut off from the direct sensate experience of the actual world that is ever-present – under our very noses.
To ‘feel’ life is not the same as fully living life, exactly as ‘thinking’ about life is not the same as fully living life.
To be actually here is to be here in this moment of time, which is the only moment one can experience anyway.
To be actually here is to be in this place which is no-where in particular in the infinitude of the physical universe.
Coming from no-where and having no-where to go, we find ourselves here in this moment in time, in this place in space.
RESPONDENT: ‘There is nothing new under the sun.’
PETER: Are you denying the technological and physical changes that have occurred this century in medicine, transport, science, communications, agriculture, etc. The very computer you sit at now is a marvellous new thing, an amazing machine linked to a communication network the likes of which would have astounded anyone a mere century ago.
But, yes, I do agree with you that ‘there is nothing new under the sun’ in terms of humans becoming free of their instinctual behaviour patterns. We are still driven by fear and aggression, nurture and desire. The imposition of morals and ethics – backed up by strict laws, police and armies – generally keeps a lid on it all and the whole system runs remarkably well, apart from the various outbreaks of war, terrorism, murder, rapes, etc.
Many humans, however, are moved, for whatever reasons, to seek a freedom from this ‘normal’ world of fear and aggression, and many seek a solution to the Human Condition such that the human species, as a whole, could live in peace on this planet.
Unfortunately the search for freedom is based on the Ancient Wisdom of Gods, spirits, other-worlds, future lives, etc. It is based firmly on that mother of all beliefs that ‘you can’t change human nature’. Seeing that we can do nothing about the ‘real’ world the only thing available – up until now – has been to escape into an imaginary world, created and sustained by belief – a meta-physical world.
There is now available a third alternative. The actual physical universe, being infinite – having no outside to it – and eternal – having no beginning or end – is pure and perfect. Most humans have experienced this purity and perfection at some stage in their life in what is called a PCE or pure consciousness experience.
There seems also an innate sense of this purity and perfection, but it is normally inaccessible to us humans, as we are born with an instinctual separate sense of ‘self’ with its accompanying instincts and are further imbued with a social identity. This very ‘self’, the who I ‘think’ I am and the who I ‘feel’ I am keeps me forever separate and alien from this purity and perfection.
The spiritual search is a vain attempt to seek ‘union’ with this purity and perfection by ‘feeling’ connected, feeling Goodness, God, Love or whatever – the best on offer to date. The major and ultimately disastrous flaw is that ‘when really cranked up’ these feelings lead to Union, Oneness, God-Realization, etc. and yet another Saviour or Guru is realized to form yet another Religion to cause yet more wars ...
PETER: Just some comments on the quotes you posted (...) –
PETER: Good old Albert, hey. Many still regard him as a scientist who contributed to our understanding of the physical universe, rather than the Mystic he was.
He is famous mostly for theoretical postulations as to what could happen to matter, space and time if the speed of light is exceeded or if infinity is measured finitely. No wonder after some 80 years his theories still remain theories. I heard a scientist use the word ‘Guru’ the other day as he pondered on which current proposer of theories to follow.
RESPONDENT: Why do all this people talk so much about silence?
PETER: Well, I don’t know about you, but what I began searching for, all those years ago, was silence – a peace of mind wherein all those chattering thoughts and the resulting feelings and emotions in me would cease.
I am just talking about a new way to actually achieve a personal peace – to sensately experience the actual universe as pure and silent in its vastness.
On the spiritual path one merely ‘feels’ silent on those occasions when one is in a trance-like state of ‘no-mind’ or when one has the delusion of feeling ‘one with the Universe’. A synthetic silence achieved by turning away from the physical and the actual – to the metaphysical and imaginary.
Two different approaches.
Imagining the silence or directly experiencing it.
But it is a wonderful thing to talk about as we sit on this planet, hurtling around the sun, in the vast, silent infinitude of this physical universe.
It makes it all seem so silly really – this Ancient Wisdom talk of spirits and Gods and going Somewhere Else rather than being here.
Peter’s Text ©The Actual Freedom Trust: 1997-. All Rights Reserved.