What Universe Am I Missing?

I exist in a multi-dimensional universe, of which I perceive a tiny fraction. For example, although frequencies of electromagnetism extend from sub-audible to ultraviolet and beyond, I perceive only those frequencies that match or closely match those of my senses. I perceive what matches my beliefs. I only accept experiences that are in harmony with my understanding. What universe am I missing?

I filled my daily life with what I think I can handle. When new or different stimuli enters my routine, I challenge it as a threat to my physical, mental, and emotional universes. This engages my problem-solving programs. What universe am I missing when I see threats as problems needing to be solved?

Interactive Universes

When I try to solve a problem I perceive comes from one of my interactive universes, I can seek aid from other universes. For example, when I’m experiencing an emotional overload, I can call upon my body and mind.

All the while I’m busy creating and solving problems, I’m moving through universes of experience. Even though these systems appear to work together, I’ve limited myself to attending to them one at a time.

What if I live in multiple dimensions of thought in this universe? And what if there are multiple universes of which I experience but one at a time? Multiple dimensions, multiple universes – what more? I ask.

Might I apply one aspect of my imagination to bridge capabilities to other dimensions and universes of thought? Can I add to and subtract from realities that I choose to focus out of and into? What’s the limitation?

I rely on my imagination to give this imagined reality support as right – modifying and manipulating my perceptions of it rather than making adjustments to the actual dimensions themselves. Change perception to change reality. Hmm, that sounds doable.

4 Aspects, ONE Consciousness

Within my First-Second Degree of Illumination bubble consciousness, I experience the concepts of “Source” and  “Oneness” in terms of separation and competition. This sense of prompts me to view life in terms of ME vs Not ME.

From this perspective, I am not the Source or One. I seek, pray, or connect in some way to Source or Oneness – because I’m conscious it is NOT ME. Even when I think Source is IN me, “it” appears as a separate concept competing with others.

An Illusion of Separation

I manage this “trick” of conscious separation by means of aspects I defend. Each aspect seems separate from others  because each DOES something different from its siblings. Yet, they are actually all functions of ONE consciousness – ONE Source ME.

Separation Within Oneness

ONE (Source) provides an illusion of separation by flowing consciousness through functions of:

  1. Will that provides power for…
  2. Intent that provides beliefs and direction for…
  3. The Interpreter that translates belief thoughts into…
  4. Experience in the form of emotion, sensual awareness, judgments, and etc.

This process returns accounting back through the various functions to Source:

  1. Will accounts to Source by returning an appreciation for separation.
  2. Intent accounts to Will by returning a sense of purpose…
  3. The Interpreter accounts to Intent by returning value and meaning for beliefs and direction…
  4. Experience accounts to The Interpreter by providing validation for interpreted belief thoughts…

All without actually fragmenting ONE Source. Ingenious!

Predictions and the Power of Why

I appreciate how important it is to have an answer or some kind of reason for why things happen as they do. We invent religions and gods to help us cope with what we don’t understand or fear. Even science has its own religion of sorts – always seeking to find that illusive reason “why.”

I, too, would love to know why. It’s in my nature to want to know. Although I consider it important to ask questions as part of the process of arriving at a satisfactory “Why,” I find asking a useful question much more difficult.

In lieu of useful yet difficult questions, I’ve occasionally settled for poorly-formed questions. I then defend the resulting deficient answers when those answers are passable enough to match my preconceptions, prejudices, and expectations. I exploit these settled-upon invalid answers as “proof” of my “truths” that now seem confirmed – absolutely right – and no longer subject to further inquiry. Done deal!

A Cause and Effect Conundrum

For a moment, let’s dispense with all reasoning, justification, rationalization – and simply look at cause and effect. Something happens and that causes something else to happen. I have experienced some cause and effect relationships often enough that I feel confident I can accurately predict effect from cause.

For example, if I step off a steep ledge, I drop to the ground. I’m familiar with the action of gravity on this earth and I can expect to fall every time I step off a steep ledge. Further, I can predict with a fair degree of accuracy that if you step off the steep ledge, you, too, will fall. Consensus truth!

Physicist David Boehm showed that cause and effect may be an illusion. Why? Because all causes are entwined with all effects in a mesh so tightly woven that it is literally impossible to separate cause from effect – we just believe that we can – making us feel safer when we believe that we can know cause from effect.

This is “if-then” thinking. I do it because I like to accurately predict and so feel safer. Even when I manage to accurately predict something, I feel better because I was right about my prediction. Validation. Vindication. Feel-good.

Cheating?

I make a fine human and a lousy scientist overall. That is, I like to be right rather than correct. I will tend to “fix” the outcomes of my experience to appear more right – rather than accepting what actually IS. To that end, I sometimes set myself and others up so I will more likely make myself right and as a bonus, receive some hard-earned validation from those I’ve convinced. Maybe most of that work went into hope that by convincing others, I’ll convince myself. Truth by consensus.

In other words, I’m willing to cheat!

Let’s take another look at cause and effect and relate it to cheating.

Something happens. Something caused it. If Dr. Boehm is correct, then something caused that cause – everything. What is everything? Isn’t that another way of saying, “All” or “Oneness”?

Assuming Dr. Boehm’s point, everything is causal to everything else and I’m experiencing my perception of those interactions. Cheating is not impossible – it’s irrelevant!

Time to get back to finding useful questions to ask. I think we’ve been through this before… 😉

Doing Something Constructive with Why

What if, instead of spending all your time visualizing your goals, you spend about 60 percent of your time thinking about WHY you want them?

Want a new house? Why? The typical response is “Er, uh, well because I’d like to have it.” That won’t do. Sorry. You’ll need to dig deeper and find things like because…

  • I want to live near my children’s school so we can participate together in their education.
  • My aged mother is moving in, and we need more space so we can more enjoy each other’s company.
  • I want stability for my family after years of moving around.
  • I want to build up some real equity for our future.

Look for reasons that tickle something deep down in your psyche. Shallow won’t motivate. It won’t keep you moving for the long haul.

Once you’ve got some reasons why that are deeply meaningful to you, then spend time getting familiar with them. Saturate your mind with them. Do it many times a day to build your ability to focus on your dream rather than defend what you already have or know.

Empathy and Respect Inside the Bubble

Inside my First-Second Degree of Illumination bubble, I perceive you separate from me, us separate from them. Even when we are we, as in a tight relationship, I distinguish each of us as separate individuals! I crusade for, create, and fortify alliances with others to assist me in defending my reality as THE reality. This the result of a separation hallucination.

From a Fourth Degree of Illumination perspective, everyone and everything in my perceptual world represent aspects of ONE individual – ME. To understand that concept, I may wish to connect with “others” – metaphoric, representational aspects of that ONE.

Through the vehicle of empathy, I can connect to aspects of me in all the myriad ways I present myself in my perceptual reality. I can extend empathy and realize a more expanded reality – one that recognize separation for the illusion it is. I might view empathy as an invitation to more fully understand the ONE that is ME.

Connecting Values to Extend Empathy

Dr. Robb Willer in a TED talk proposes that one can connect with another through shared values. He suggests we use values to extend empathy. Paraphrasing, when I appreciate your values and understand them in the way you do, I can connect to you in a meaningful way. When I connect through our values, I may discover a source of my perceptual separation and an opportunity for re-unity.

As a political activist, social scientist, and researcher, Dr. Robb Willer supports the idea that like-minded individuals tend to extend empathy to each other – what evolutionary psychologists call tribalism. A bias for tribal associations causes us to favor the opinions of those in the in-group and discount those of the out-group. We see this playing out everyday in American politics. That same separation illusion appears in me as perceptions of human cruelty, blame, terrorism, and justifications for and acceptance of genocide – and much more.

Connecting the Dots

This disconnect between competing values is the essence of the First-Second Degree of Illumination bubble.

To begin the process of “connect the dots” I might exercise one of my human “superpowers” – imagination. I can pretend I am both sides of an issue. I am you AND I am me. Imagine what it might be like to espouse another person’s beliefs and values in a scenario in which they are the “good guys” in an issue. Willer suggests I connect by applying the same value I hold for some other issue to their value concerning the issue in controversy. Value to same value.

Using Willer’s TED example, a conflict might arise when I espouse a more liberal view than my neighbor who espouses a more conservative view. When we discuss a divisive issue, I may tend to favor values of equality and fairness while he might base his arguments more heavily on moral values.

People are willing to fight and die for their [moral] values. Why are they going to give that up just to agree with you on something that they don’t particularly want to agree with you on anyway? If that persuasive appeal that you’re making to your Republican uncle means that he doesn’t just have to change his view, he’s got to change his underlying values, too, that’s not going to go very far. (Willer)

Remember – ALL the values on ALL sides of the issue are MINE – they only appear to apply to other people. Even the values themselves are an artifact of the separation illusion and do not exist as I perceive them – if at all.

Connection

To connect with my neighbor, I connect with his values as MY values. To do that, I respect his values as valid. Then I can extend empathy, in which I begin the process of dissolving the perception of separation into connection. That within-the-bubble empathy still validates a perception of separation because I’ve “extended” it to someone else – a someone I perceive as not me. Still, it is a step closer to complete dissolution of the separation illusion.

Connecting with the characters in my world offers me an opportunity to delve more deeply into the source of that world – the ONE that is ME. And isn’t that the point?

How I Use Pseudoscience to Convince Me of My Truth

Due to a comprehensive field of fear, I defend myself from awareness of anything outside my First-Second Degree of Illumination bubble. I don’t have to perceive accurately to survive – just be correct enough. To that end, I apply the scientific method – with a twist.

That twist is pseudoscience that I employ to hold my truths firm against a world that constantly challenges them. To continue defending my truths, I occasionally accept falsity as truth and assume evidence that may appear to support my truths – without question. When MY interpretation is THE interpretation, I get rightness and certitude.

Always better to assume rightness than question it!

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