by Kenneth Harper Finton ©2014
The Perpetual Search for Truth
I have learned not to trust anyone who tells me they possess the truth. I have no doubt they think they do possess truth, but this thinking does not make it so.
A myth is a widely held but false belief or idea. If the world itself is viewed as a myth, then we cannot help but generate new mythologies no matter how scientifically rooted our knowledge becomes.
Myths are associated with traditions and religions. There are twelve major religions in the world today–Baha’i, Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Judaism, Shinto, Sikhism, Taoism, and Zoroastrianism–and all of them have adherents who think they possess the truth.
That alone shows us that truth is subjective.
Religions serve many purposes, but three main human longings form the basis for the hold of religion over the populations: 1) the thought of death 2) the purpose of living 3) the advancement of social constructions.
We, like most of the spectrum of living things, have an instinct for survival. The self-aware human realizes that they will perish from a very early age. People often accuse young people of feeling that they are immortal, but nothing could be farther from reality. They come upon the realization of their potential demise early on and are often highly troubled with the thought.
It is understandable that we wish to continue as long as possible, but sooner of later, we will come to realize that nothing lives forever. We find that fact to be depressing and begin to wonder what the purpose of life really is. “Why,” we ask, are born but to die?”
Enter religion and mythology,
Afterlife–concepts of heaven and hell, the idea of eternity Nirvana or unity with the void– are common components of religious belief.
Some people desperately want to believe that they and their loved ones can persist long after their time on Earth has come to an end. Religions and individuals develop mythologies to satisfy this deep-set urge to persist and continue their personal identities in another place and time. In scientific circles, ideas of multiple or alternative universes where other forms of ourselves exist in other planes seem to satisfy the need for perpetuation in some people. After all, in infinity are not all things possible?
Potentiality, however, is not the same idea as possibility. It behooves us to remember that infinity is in another dimension. In nonexistence nothing at all is possible. Again, we meet with duality and the limitation of expression. The preceding sentence has a double meaning, as nothing is not only possible, but the basis of all things.
Since we obviously have an identity, then we exist and therefore we are not Infinite. We are temporal beings. The price of existing seems to be the possession of a beginning and an ending.
It is hard to fault people for these beliefs. It seems so natural to want to persist through eternity, despite the likelihood that we would grow so bored and stagnant that we would want to curse of our immortal existence after an unreasonable amount of time had passed.
Too many wonderful lives end too quickly in our short life spans. It is the stuff of tragedy, confusion and the ingredients for despair. Our emotional human natures call out for a scape goat for the horrid things that happen to us and those around us.
The first in line for blame is generally God, the Devil, or Mother Nature–social constructions that we have made to explain the harshness of reality in our short, lives filled with both tragedy and comedy. Religions teach us not to blame God for the evils that occur, but many allow us to blame the Devil. Mother Nature is concerned with nurture and growth, so she is not to blame in many religious dogmas.
So what if the Earth opens up and swallows us whole or the currents sweep away the innocent child. So what if the tornado cripples the town or an accident breaks the back of the best athlete your village has ever known, turning him into a paraplegic vegetable. It is not the fault of Mother Nature. It is not the fault of God. “Who are we to know the ways of God,” is often the answer we are asked to swallow.
Satan is the ultimate scape goat in the Judaic/Christian belief system. There is something in us that wants to define and personalize evil and hate. What better construction for the ages than to have a benevolent and caring father figure at war with the unholy forces that cause harm to ourselves and our loved ones?
Thus we build our myths. God, the father, is built upon the structure of the nuclear family. Satan is the source of all evil.
So what is the reasonable explanation? What new myths should we construct to explain the inhumanity of man to man and the eternal war against the mechanisms of nature? Shall we create a myth of alternative universes or parallel worlds? Should we speculate that Infinity all is possible, including the recording and storing of all identities and experiences? Surely this is a possibility, as in endless time most all potentiality becomes possible.
We can only speculate upon the reason, if any, for existence to be apparent. The big question of why there is anything at all when nothing would do so well is answered with the realization that nothing is real but the infinity of the zero dimension.
Yet, there is the question as to why a world, be it real or illusion, exists at all.
The answer, of course, is that it exists and does not exist simultaneously. There is only experience and the awareness that makes that experience possible.
Infinity precipitates all things. Nothing becomes real, because nothing is real. Once experience begins there is no stopping it. Once movement defines space and contains enough duration to be felt and observed, an entire universe is born.
Experience itself might be the purpose of the observable universe, if it must have a purpose at all. However, there is no need for a purpose. Purpose is a human construct and value. Why would the universe need a purpose? Experience is in itself enough. Experience preceded our human values and will succeed and outlast our values.
The human mind is born without experience. Experience is learned from trial and error. Would not the universe itself, born without experience, do the same?
What happens if experience comes to an end? What happens if all motion is stilled and all space and time disappears? Does the universe itself end? Will experience begin again as it did in a beginning? Or did it never begin in the first place?
The only way out of the conundrum is the latter. It never did begin and it will never end because it did not begin. This thought seems to be the only logical answer. Nothing exists is a dual term, not an expression of the ultimate nihilistic thought. Because nothing exists, we have an existent universe.
If experience is the source of all events, all events are experience. They carry no blame, no cause, no system of evaluation. Being is for the sake of being and all things that we emotionally react to are not purposeful, but essential for the experience of being.
How, we might ask, could it be any different? I can see no way that it could be different. As in life we have to deal with the good and the bad, the evil and the good, so does the universe at large.
You might ask yourself what you would change is you were in charge of designing the universe. If you were the creator of all things, what would you change? Would you make things so we all beings live forever? Would you eliminate pain and suffering and man’s inhumanity to man? Would you prefer the constant temperance of a summer’s day to periods of tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes and tsunami waves?
Personally, I would make a small change, should I design the world. I would prefer that dogs live as long as we do. I have always found it absurd that elephants and parrots and turtles have century long lives while dogs are lucky to make it to age fifteen. Yet, even that might be too much to ask. By loving our pets and losing them, we are prepared for greater sacrifice and sorrows to come later. If we are to live in this world of gain and loss, we must experience both. So it is with the universe at large.
The world changes about us and we change with the changes. The sun shines on all and the rain falls on everyone. Some of the most destructive forces in the universe have created the temperate planet on which we live today. The Earth itself was struck by a sister planet the size of Mars about three and a half billion years ago. That collision almost destroyed the Earth, but without that occurrence, we would have no moon.
Without the moon we would have much smaller tides only pulled by the Sun. We would have much shorter days of between four and eight hours of daylight. We would have much longer years because it would take well over a thousand days to orbit the Sun. We would have much darker nights with our shortened days without the reflected moonlight to shine upon the planet. Without that cosmic cataclysm life would be much different on Earth, if it existed at all.
A universe without change would be impossible, as change is inherent in the very design of movement. Movement begets change. Change begets loss. Loss begets sorrow, sorrow begets new joys.
Infinity is unknowable. It is the zero dimension. One dimensional entities exist everywhere at once. Two dimensional entities begin the march of time. Three dimensional entities begin the march of space. Four dimensional entities combine time and space into events.
Awareness is essential for dimensions to exist. The zero dimension must then be the primitive form of eternal awareness that makes events possible. It contains no mass nor matter nor energy. Infinity has no place in time, no place in space, yet it is the source of all things that become manifest and worlded. The mathematical patterns and physical laws that govern the interactions of things must either precede existence itself or they are discovered and made manifest through trial and error through the eons of time that infinity encompasses. It is possible––even likely––that mathematics and physical laws are two dimensional entities, like lines and circles on a flat plane that appear everywhere at once and establish the rules for further dimensional events. We write equations in two dimensional spaces and conceptualize them in three dimensions or more.
Dimensions are the blueprints and scaffolding in the building of existence itself.