Posted by Roberta Grimes • November 19, 2022 • 44 Comments
Quantum Physics, Understanding Reality
I believe I can fly. I believe I can touch the sky.
I think about it every night and day.
Spread my wings and fly away.
I believe I can soar. I see me running through that open door!
I believe I can fly, I believe I can fly, I believe I can fly!
– R. Kelly, from “I Believe I Can Fly” (1996)
For people who are seeking the truth about reality, this is such an awkward time to be alive. There is a pitched battle going on now between two groups of scientists who each want reality to align with their own preconceived ideas, and to start out demanding a particular result when what you claim to seek is objective truth makes no sense whatsoever. So for more than a century, theoretical physicists in particular have been producing ever more fanciful and entirely untestable theories. Which means that for decades we have been watching what amounts to a war between materialists wielding paper weapons and religionists whose weapons are razor-sharp, but unfunded and therefore also headed nowhere. I root for the religionists. How can you not? Even though the Roman Christianity that motivates them has bogus dogmas at its core, their science is so beautiful. Wikipedia, of course, calls Intelligent Design “pseudoscientific.” But so is a lot of materialist science equally pseudoscientific, at least until it shows some success. Like take, for example, the materialists’ search for a source of consciousness inside the human brain. There can be nothing more pseudoscientific than that!
The religionist scientists are as poor as church mice. They have nothing on their side except some excellent science. They started out fighting for creationism and against Darwin’s theory of evolution; but they have broadened their mandate in recent years, so now they look more mainstream. And this is a David-and-Goliath situation, if ever there was one! Almost every working scientist on earth is a materialist, while all the religionist scientists seem to be based at The Discovery Institute, at the Center for Science and Culture in Seattle, Washington. The religionist scientists’ primary publication is Evolution News & Science Today. I urge you to sign up to receive their emails, because reading about those religionist scientists’ work is such a treat! I also follow a couple of materialist scientific organizations, and I attend their online lectures when I can find the time. But the materialist scientists are so constrained by their gatekeepers that you always know beforehand pretty much what they are going to say.
And you and I have a pressing need to get past this foolish catfight between the materialists and the religionists and ever better understand what is true about reality. How else will we make sense of things, so we can better understand how it all fits together? For us, being science hobbyists is essential. Getting the science right is a huge part of making sense of the greater reality where we enjoy our eternal lives, since figuring out how all of that fits with this material universe is our most fundamental need. Until you can truly envision it all, you will find it hard to vanquish your fear of death. And to give you a tiny taste of how the religionist scientists can help, let’s look at some of the articles that they sent out for our delectation in just this past week:
Those four articles were in the religionist scientists’ Monday morning email. Then came their Wednesday afternoon email:
I love it! Anticipating watching those carefree scientific minds doing their carefree scientific work makes me smile to see another religionist scientists’ email arrive; and reading about what they are up to now provides a couple of high points every week. And then I read New Scientist or Scientific American, and I see how those materialist scientific writers have to parse words to get around their censors, and to no purpose whatsoever but to maintain an utterly spurious crusade against finding a figurehead sort of creature that has become a bogeyman god developed and nurtured entirely in the minds of the materialists gatekeepers in all those mainstream university science departments. And I wonder for the umpteenth time what the point of any of this might be. We live in the twenty-first century, for heaven’s sake, and not in the Middle Ages! Can you literally believe that adult human beings, and never mind trained scientists, are still putting up with this level of garbage?
Look, dearly beloved Materialist Scientists, materialism is a fully discredited theory. I think that by now everyone can see that. Consciousness is the base creative force, whether you call it God or Tomato Soup. You materialists don’t have to fight the religionists, since you can simply call the creative force “Not-God” and refuse to worship it, but instead you can just study it and move on. Simply allow for Epigenetics, Intelligent Design, Something-from-Nothing, and all the other by-now-obvious effects of whatever that base creative force might be, and add them to your generally accepted scientific protocols. Why not? There was a very much earlier day when your scientific predecessors had to accept the demonstrable scientific fact that the earth is round, even though it looks flat. Surely you must remember that? And there also was a day when scientists finally had to accept the certainty that the earth revolves around the sun, even though it looks as though the sun revolves around the earth. Don’t you remember that as well? And all of this is no different. Just learn to deal with a new set of facts, get rid of the gatekeepers, start doing objective science again, and move on!
And now look at that, dearly beloved Religionist Scientists. You have finally sort of won. You can start doing your free science in the sunlight, which is where all objective truths belong. Just soft-pedal the religious stuff, okay? Nobody wants to hear it. What people want to hear about is the wonderful scientific discoveries that are going to be possible, now that all that stupid bickering is past. And talk about consciousness, not God. Don’t gloat. Don’t insist that scientists who still feel squeamish at the notion of talking about a creative force must personify consciousness in any way. I think you will find that God doesn’t mind.
How else, really, does this standoff ever end? It has lasted now for more than a century, at incalculable cost in time and treasure. I have never seen anything more stupid. If you were to break the news in any newspaper anywhere on earth that otherwise rational adult scientists have been fighting like bratty children for the past century over whether or not there is a God, and they have been funding their war to the tune of billions of research dollars, no one would believe you. And yet, that is precisely what is still going on, to this day.
The most tragic aspect of their battle is the fact that neither side is seeking anything like the objective truth. The religionists are more objectively right, since they are not hampered by the materialists’ limiting fundamental materialist dogma; but since even they are all professed Christians and working with a Christian agenda, we cannot really call either side free-minded. So basic scientific research continues to be severely stymied, especially in two crucial areas:
Truth is truth. The mainstream scientific gatekeepers – the university science departments and the peer-reviewed journals – have not changed what is true by one iota by insisting upon materialism as the fundamental scientific dogma for all of this past, lost century. They risk nothing if they now give up the reins. And if they don’t do that, their loss is certain. Since the day will come, inevitably, when scientists who are neither materialists nor religionists – scientists who are no longer in bodies, and many of whose names you would recognize – will finally figure out how to solve what have been some almost insuperable problems with the process of establishing easy communication between the earth and the place where those that we used to think were dead now reside. And then you will be able to ring up dead Aunt Mildred and get her recipe for turkey dressing. And then, too, she will be able to ring up her great-grandson, who now is working as a physicist gatekeeper in some university science department. And she will give him a dressing-down that he will not soon forget.
I believe I can fly. I believe I can touch the sky.
I think about it every night and day.
Spread my wings and fly away.
I believe I can soar. I see me running through that open door!
I believe I can fly, I believe I can fly, I believe I can fly!
– R. Kelly, from “I Believe I Can Fly” (1996)
44 thoughts on “Religionism vs. Materialism”
Dear Roberta, Why has the Truth been denied for so long?
Because the Truth IS, we all get to it eventually. I think it’s
sad that so many waste time trying to keep their ignorance.
And devide into groups of different flavored ignorance.
Add Roman Christianity and you have quite a barricade!
The Truth demands a lot. You have to forgive yourself.
You have to love yourself. You have to believe you can
change. It’s isn’t easy, but it’s the Only Game in town!
Oh my dear Erica, I think that in the beginning, for the materialist scientists it was just that they felt overwhelmed by the advent of quantum mechanics, and they couldn’t also at the same time cope with the sudden discovery of communications from formerly dead people. It was a snap decision on the part of the scientists, and supposed to be temporary, but then it conveniently worked out well for them at first. And as the decades passed, it became hard-wired into their system.
And where Christianity is concerned, I know some devout Christians! When I have asked some that I know well enough to ask the question whether it has ever bothered them at all that their religion doesn’t follow the teachings of Jesus, they just kind of shrug off the question. Their religion ought to do better, but not their doing and not their problem.
So here are two core systems by now far off-track, and destined to fail. And both because long ago they became unmoored from the truth. The lesson in that is pretty profound!
Your post today is a very good one and thank you very much for it!
One academic area that seems quite overlooked when it comes to the theory of intelligent design (or whatever you want to call it) is number theory; in my 20-year deeply inspired study of numbers (the guidance I received during my research is a whole different story!), how they behave, their hidden dual characteristics of two types (visible-invisible, as well as perfect mirrors of plus and minus balance), have led me to introduce a totally new number theory, but even here we run into the problem of mathematicians being stuck in human-thought based unproven theories (e.g. the theory that 2 is prime and 1 is not, when the reverse is actually true) and thus rejecting right off hand my (and Dr. Plichta’s, and others) findings.
The result of this decades of research has led to a ca. 400-page book, in which I believe I have proven that numbers cannot possibly be a mere human invention, but are a given, beyond time and space. It’s absolutely fascinating to see how many numerical aspects are true, all the same time (!), which provides a new insight of what “perfection” can possibly mean. A chapter has been added to the amazing numbers operative in just our solar system.
To dismiss all these “truths at once” as mere coincidences is nonsensical of course and only proves that some people simply don’t want to face the facts, the true reality of the universe.
Since you provided links, may I be so free to also provide a link to my free book? (9) A New Theory of Numbers: The Latest Discoveries in Mathematics | Adrian de Groot – Academia.edu
Agree with your sentiments. Published a paper about such recently (google Jack Hiller God, Mathematics, and the Physical Sciences):
God, Mathematics, and the Physical Sciences
Jack H. Hiller
There are two classic philosophical questions that have seemed irresolvable: (1) When a mathematician defines a new branch of mathematics, or even discovers a theorem, is such definition or discovery truly creative, or merely a discovery of what already existed in the sense that Platonic realism holds mathematics is eternally real with no reliance on minds for existence? (2) Why does mathematical modeling for physics work so well, such as, for example, the Schrodinger wave equation? This note argues that both questions are well answered when the inquiry posits that there is God who created both “real” and material existences.
This is truly fascinating!!
Oh my dear sir, I think we all would love to hear the backstory of your inspired study of number theory guidance! I am fascinated by numbers myself, ever since the moment maybe twenty-five years ago when I was watching a PBS special on the universe and heard a young physicist say that “For some reason, numbers can be used to study the universe.” His “For some reason” was a gigantic AHA! moment for me. Ir he hadn’t put it that way, I never would have realized that, of course, that fact is the key to everything! Isn’t it? Those numbers are the Designer’s signature, aren’t they?
If you have a link to your book or to anything else to publish here, of course you are very welcome to do that, and thank you!!
What you wrote here is all true. Let me extend your observations from one who was a practicing materialist scientist to one who has seen the light.
Consider that God did say to Moses, and has repeated to others, “I am that I am.” Well what the heck does that mean? My dissertation was about the topic of vagueness in communication, and I even created a Dictionary of over 300 words and phrases that are employed in communication when the communicator lacks mental clarity, or may even attempt to bluff their audience about their knowledge (Google “Hiller Vagueness” to learn more). Let me interpret that expression.
When we attempt objectively to define a term, we rephrase it using other words. For example, a “door is a gate.” Or “an apple is an edible fruit.” Now, what other words or terms might be used to define God? The “uncreated Creator?” The “supreme being?” Well, these terms are suggestive, but surely cannot serve to define who or what God is. By contrast, “I am that I am” elegantly asserts that:
1. God exists (am)
2. There are no other effective words or concepts than the primitive term, “God” to stand for God, so He merely refers to Himself as “I.”
We do not know objectively what God “is” except that He exists. Now, what does this observation have to do with modern science? Everything.
Modern science began with the development of a rule for objectification of the objects of study, operationalism. “Operationalism is based on the intuition that we do not know the meaning of a concept unless we have a method of measurement for it. It is commonly considered a theory of meaning which states that “we mean by any concept nothing more than a set of operations; the concept is synonymous with the corresponding set of operations” (Bridgman 1927, 5).” Modern philosophers argue that such a view is too extreme, but it remains at the heart of the physical sciences and engineering.
A mistake that I have written about in quantum mechanics is in fact based on the extreme application of this principle by Heisenberg, Bohr, and Schrodinger to declare that subatomic particles, that were beyond their capability to directly observe, had to be regarded as unreal until energetically observed. Einstein famously argued that, “God does not play dice,” and that it’s foolish to claim that the Moon does not exist unless you are looking at it. My research (google; Hiller on the natural state of subatomic particles) showed that Einstein was right, but physicists will not accept that fact, but insist on their old dogma.
Given that modern science asserts that any object of study must be definable in terms of observation and precise measurement of what is observed, it cannot in principle deal with “consciousness.” (It does make an exception for superstring theory in 11 dimensions [four for space-time and 7 that are not extended, but are only mathematical abstractions], but this theory is stymied for empirical research).
Modern science provides an invaluable perspective for the engineering R&D that has produced the tools for modern life, such as electric motors and power generators, computers, the internet, plastics, LED lights, aircraft, rockets– but modern science is totally incapable of addressing consciousness, and regards any such efforts as woo woo folley. There is no bridging this gap.
Let me suggest that this gap between materialism and the primacy of unobservable consciousness is OK with God. Afterall, if God wanted us universally to observe His existence as we do when in Heaven, and popularly to realize the fundamental role of immaterial consciousness, wouldn’t He make such known to us for our material lives, instead of allowing us to depend on faith– or on a few generally ignored researchers?
“I am that I am” must for now be satisfied with the status quo.
Oh my dear Jack, so are you saying that scientists have declared themselves to be simply incapable of studying consciousness? How then are they capable of seeking a source for it in the human brain? And how can they study something like life, which is also immaterial? How can they study gases, or are gases considered to be material but simply not solid? And how is it that they seem to be capable of studying forces, such as gravity? How is that material enough for them to be able to study it? Or motion? And why are supposedly grown-up scientists so finicky?
Afterall, if God wanted us universally to observe His existence as we do when in Heaven, and popularly to realize the fundamental role of immaterial consciousness, wouldn’t He make such known to us for our material lives, instead of allowing us to depend on faith– or on a few generally ignored researchers?
I sooooo agree with you but have a problem understanding why. Any thoughts on that?
The problem as I see it is a confusion not between whether something is real or not, but between philosophical registers of meaning. For example, Bridgman’s statement “we mean by any concept nothing more than a set of operations; the concept is synonymous with the corresponding set of operations”, is to confuse ontology with epistemology. This same error occurs when physicists try to eliminate the possibility of an objectively ‘real’ world because the math seems to point at dimensions where observer/observed are indistinguishable. Or errors made in claims about the existence/non existence of God or consciousness based on material so-called “evidence” or lack of it. Repeatedly, we are subjected to conclusions that rest on the illogical assumption that absence of evidence is the same as evidence of absence (as if the linguistic terms are ‘associative’ in the same way as are some mathematical terms). So the confusion between a mathematical truth and its correspondence or lack thereof to an ontology, is precisely the same as the confusion between religionism and scientisn, where linguistic imperatives for epistemological claims are inappropriately applied to ontological claims. Just because something cannot be defined, mathematically or linguistically, only means it may remain forever an unknowable mystery, not that is either does or does not have ontological status. Physicists, mathematicians, scientists and religionists all fall prey to indulging in this epistemic fallacy, where being able to conceive of and therefore name something is wrongly understood as proof of independent existence. This is nominalism, and cannot prove or support ontological claims of any kind. Epistemological claims logically HAVE NO BEARING on ontological claims.
Dr, Ivory, well said. My senior prof in grad school used to call such folly, “verbal magic.” What you described was the mistaken logic of Heisenberg, Bohr, and Schrodinger; their mistake has created considerable mischief in science, such as the silly notion of the cat that is both alive and dead, and that muliple worlds must exist. Currently, millions, if not billions, of dollars are being spent on the illusion that subatomic particles possess superposition states, becuase or the dificulties in observing them; the fruit of the engineering labors mispent is unreliable quantum computers.
Precisely, my dear Jack. Schrodinger and his cat. If you arrive at an animal who is simultaneously alive and dead, then you have arrived nowhere.
Oh my very dear Dr. Ivory, it is lovely to see you here! And thank you for making what is a wonderful point. I have never had the patience for any level of philosophical discussion, and reading your comment makes me remember why; but I hugely respect you for being willing to undertake it and see it through!
My dear Lola, I think the problem is not with God. The problem is with the scientists.
Dear Lola, Yes.
Existence in Heaven is pure bliss. The light of God shines continuously in the background and we feel His love as we do whatever pleases us. But in this perfect bliss, we lack any drive to push our creativity,to enlarge our potential, to develop spirititually, and by our eternal immersion in such bliss we could not even realize the potental joy this state of existence provides.
The harsh material world creates all sorts of pressures merely to survive, and any happiness is fleeting. We suffer the loss of friends and loved ones and endure great emotional distress. Our bodies suffer the pain of injuries and diseases. Life is so hard, even children despair and commit suicide.
In the harsh envirment of the material world in which our mortal bodies are wont to suffer, we are motivated to strive for success and become creative. We may develop courage facing obstacles. Confronted with injustices, we have the opportunty to overcome them by good deeds, and pursue Truth as an enduring trait; by contrast, there are no opportunities to do good deeds in Heaven for lack of want, and truth is known to all without any effort.
So, if we knew fully well that our excursion into the material world was just that, life here could easily become just a game to be endured, or even a time to engage in evil pursuits knowing the victim’s souls escape the wounds we inflict. Such sure knowledge that our eternal home is blissful Heaven would thus defeat the purpose of God in sending us here to own a mortal body that must struggle in the material world merely to survive. The essential motivation to strive, to develop, and to be creative would be diminished or even entirely lost.
Myself, as I have come to realize these truths, my interest in the empirical sciences has diminished (although I still enjoy mathematics for its inherent beauty). Because others suffer, my motivation to be kind has increased–but again, if all others realized their mortal life is ony a temporary excursion from Heaven, the motivation to do good would be diminished as ultimately unimportant.
Oh my dear Jack, this is so beautifully said! People ask me all the time what the difference is between here and there, and you have summed it up perfectly!
Dear Roberta, dear Jack, this reminds me so much of my STE / OBE I described here on this blog in August. I was 5 years old and yet I had sooo many questions, for example why there is good and evil, how the universe began and of course also the questions who or what God is. In my experience I got the answers to all my questions, but I wasn`t able (or not allowed?) to take them with me when I returned into my body. But I remember kind of a “summary” or feeling I received that was very similar to what you wrote, dear Jack: “It is what it is and it is everything and all there ever was or will be!” This is what I could take with me and until today I remember the overwhelming joy and the feeling, that in the end everything will turn out well and we all can trust and relax.
It also reminds me of the poem of Austrian poet Erich Fried “What it is”: It is nonsense, says reason. It is what it is says love. ….. It is ridiculous says pride……
And I guess it is the pride of many scientists or humans in general that doesn`t allow them to see that it is not mankind that has made the universe or as Einstein said: “Mankind can`t even make a blade of grass.”
And dear Roberta, I am really looking forward to the day when we all will be able to communicate quite easily with those on the other side!
Oh my dear Karin, we all are looking forward to the day when communication between here and there will be easy!
Please allow me to indulge in a flight of fancy for a moment. From that day on:
* The fear of death will be no more.
* Materialist science will be no more.
* Even wars will be no more.
Because from that day on, humankind will know that indeed we live eternally, and so will begin the great transformation that Jesus called the kingdom of God overspreading the earth. As above, so below!
I totally see your point here. In a sense, we need to experience darkness in order to appreciate light. Thank you.
Dr, H: My comment was meant for you but it went under the wrong post – sorry
Then Dr Jack, if all others knew their life on earth was but a temporary diversion from Heaven, and they had a diminished desire to do good – why do I feel the opposite?
I realize that I am merely one example of a conscious, earthbound being, but this particular being is MORE encouraged to do good, while knowing no one really dies and each will be lifted to the Light at life’s end. Why? What if my thought-feeling on this thing?
Yes, we are creators and there is a certain joy in creating situations of goodwill, help, succor and kindness for our fellows. There is certainly satisfaction and joy in it. But more than that, many of us feel that it is deeply ‘right’ or ‘necessary’ to alleviate human suffering, each in our own way perhaps. Even though we will be okay in the end, there exists this desire to reduce or eradicate someone’s pain, be it physical, mental or emotional; be it real or imagined; be it past, present or future oriented.
Sure we do not die and the hurtful things in life are ultimately illusions, but we are disturbed and even distressed to see the suffering of human consciousness nonetheless. There is something about it we can’t stand – even though we know that such suffering may indeed be a spiritual growth opportunity and thus beneficial in some indescribably deeper way.
For some people this assistance compulsion is deeply ingrained. Perhaps it is Divine Compassion manifesting in each of us and that is just it. Perhaps it is something else.
The fact remains that the alleviation of suffering is a driving desire, regardless of any sense of personal merit-gain or foreknowledge of our Heavenly homecoming. Otherwise I cannot fathom it. Here again, I find myself facing something that goes far deeper than the conscious mind. 🙏🏼🕊❣️🧠
Since you are good to people Dr Jack, I know the enacting of kindness is true of you.
I guess all I’ve been rabbiting on about can be simply expressed thusly:
There is a special magic in being angels for each other. 🌅
Oh my dear Efrem, I know just how you feel. There is something so unbearable about seeing people suffering – it calls to us on such a deep level, and in a way that is so unbearable that the only way to get anything done is to learn to somehow block it, at least partially… because there is too much of it for you to address it all. I see the work that I do as my indirect way of addressing it, but of course it’s not enough. It never could be enough.
Please allow me to say that your work is pivotal to the awakening of humankind. You’ve gone to the core of human enlightenment, so to speak.
The Way of Jesus is the key to spiritual growth both individually and collectively. Becoming beings of love, shedding ego domination, heavy conditionings, resentment, anger, guilt, fear and the mistaken idea that we don’t live beyond physical death, is the solution for ourselves and our species. The Way has the capacity to change everything.
On the subject of partially blocking the unbearable suffering that people endure, I agree with you. One has to find a method to keep out the full impact of such horrors, in order to function in this world; so as to help others effectively.
Otherwise the distress of it is too much and one would become immobilized by the magnitude of it. So I get that we who incarnate in this world are strong souls. We have to be really. 🌎
I have learned that one such method of reducing the impact of people’s suffering, is to do our bit to help while leaving the results to God. We become channels of God’s work, while He takes care of how things turn out. We can even ask God to take the ‘burden of hurt’ from our shoulders when doing what needs to be done.
I’ve always felt that, ultimately, we can ‘rest in God’ as it were. This is the gentle yielding to Love. I guess it is okay to enjoy being held and soothed by Love unbounded. 🙏🏼❣️🌅
Dear Roberta,☆I reread everything. I got a D in Algebra-
I couldn’t get X to the other side! But when you said numbers could be one of God’s Signature,
that I can”t simplify anything. God is complex
and forgiving! I respect numbers. I have a phone number If you dial ir, you get me,
the 1 and only me! Numbers can reach people!
MySSN# is me only me
When I think of all the suffering, I think
‘ of Schindler’s List”☆If you save 1 person,
you save the world “
Oh my dear Erica, I don’t like numbers either. And ever since that old retired physicist told me over drinks that numbers can be made to say whatever you want them to say, which was years ago, I’ve got to tell you that I REALLY don’t like numbers! But yes, to the extent that numbers refer to people, then they are sacred, my dear. As you are.
Oh my dear lovely Efrem, I don’t think that any one of us but Jesus is doing pivotal work, but each of us is trying to perfectly work on our tiny puzzle-piece. And that completed puzzle is so gigantic! As I was sleeping last night, I had the epiphany that even Jesus didn’t get to see His work come to perfect fruition just as He had planned it, and right on time. All of us are doing only the best that we can do! So, we do our very best. And that is okay. And we go on. Perhaps now, with teachingsbyjesus.com, He will see His plans come to eventual fruition… a little late, true, but still, perhaps it will be good enough.
Dear Emrem, All well said. Having read your history of comments along with those posted here, I infer you are an old soul with an elevated spirit who choses to return, much as the Dalai Lama, to better this world.
This is very true regarding Efrem and others like him. There are those who delight in hurting others – many more than most people know about. Studies are being done on them all the time but they go nowhere because no one is acknowledging the old soul/new soul factor and are instead studying their brains.
Dear Lola, prof James Fallon is a neurologist who has made a career of studying the brains and DNA of psychopaths. He has found good, fairly reliable neurological brain markers and DNA markers associated with them. Curious about his families history, he looked at his own. He has the brain of a murderer. Looked at his own DNA, and once again found he had genes associated with violence and aggression.
So, there may be a mortal body that is inclined toward self-centered behavior, even psychopathic behavior, but one’s soul may override their temptations and rages, or what Freud termed the Id’s instinctual demands.
My goodness, my dear Jack, that is fascinating!
This is S. Hilary Anne Ivory’s Comment:
The reason that materialist scientists and religionist scientists cannot agree is not one of who is right or what exists, but one of conflicting and confounding ‘registers’ of inquiry.
Let me explain. When physicists et al. discover amazing mathematical truths — for example, work that appears to indicate that the observed and the observer are inextricably, inexplicably meshed such that one cannot be understood without the other being taken into consideration — the problem is that they then go on to make claims about the ‘real’ world when they attempt to interpret this math. There are mathematical truths, which are true by virtue of the coherence theory of truth, one of the classical theories of truth (we’ll get to others below), that posits “a belief is true if and only if it is part of a coherent system of beliefs.” This theory offers an analysis of the nature of truth, how we might know things because of characteristics of our way of knowing, but does not and cannot provide a test or criterion for truth. As long as the concepts within an approach do not conflict with one another — that is, the premises upon which they are based do not contradict one another, and the logic used to arrive at these concepts is consistent from conclusion to conclusion — then one might say they are ‘true’. This approach is an epistemological one, that is, it deals exclusively with the way in which we can know something. Truth here appears to rest in the realm of the ideal, that is, of ideas in the mind, not necessarily objects in the real world.
However, when physicists attempt to derive implications for the way things are in the world as inferred from these mathematical truths, they are making a jump from a system of how we know things, an epistemological claim, to assumptions about what exists in the world, an ontological claim. Claims about what exists are subject to a different theory of truth, the correspondence theory of truth that states “a belief is true if and only if it corresponds to a fact.” This notion of truth is not epistemological, but ontological: it claims that there are things that exist objectively, whether or not they are known or observed. Truth here appears to rest in the realm of the real, that is, of objects in the world, independently of ideas in the mind.
When scientists opine in areas that have traditionally been the jurisdiction of theologians, areas like intelligent design of the cosmos, or the existence of souls beyond the body, or the problem of the ‘location’ of consciousness, or when religionists try to make logical arguments supporting the existence of such things, they all commit the error of what Whitehead and Russell have called an epistemic fallacy. Just because a claim about the characteristic of a concept does/does not make sense linguistically, does not mean it infers the existence or non-existence of that concept in the objective world. They all constantly trip up over this divide between epistemological and ontological questions. Just because a materialist scientist cannot think how it might be possible to know – to objectively measure the existence of – God or the soul, or consciousness, they assume it cannot exist. This is a leap from epistemology to ontology. They make the further logical error of assuming that the absence of evidence (they can’t figure out how they would know about it) is the same as evidence of absence: just because you can’t find objective evidence for the existence of God does not logically imply that God does not exist. Unlike in mathematics where, in addition for example, one may safely claim that there is an associative principle between the terms (that 1+2 is the same by association as 2+1), no such principle applies to terms in spoken or written language.
Likewise, the religionists use linguistic arguments that are supposed to ‘prove’ the existence of God, etc. whereas they are similarly jumping from epistemological claims to ontological claims. When a religionist tries to answer the question of whether God exists, he falls into the trap of nominalism, that is if he can make a linguistic argument that ‘proves’ the existence of what he has named ‘God’, he makes an illogical leap by saying that that proves the existence of this God in the real world. Because we can never escape making assumptions about the relation between what we know and what may be real outside of what we know, epistemological claims have no bearing on ontological claims.
However, the reverse may not be true. Ontological claims may have a bearing on epistemology. This kind of reasoning brings into focus a pragmatic theory of truth, where something is considered true if, by means of behaving as if it were true we get closer to where we would be. This renders Truth as a subset of the Good: a claim is true in so far forth as it brings into being the good we are hoping for.
The reasoning underlying this kind of truth is neither inductive (empirical, or a posteriori) nor deductive (a priori). It is abductive. Abductive reasoning is like medical reasoning used to make a diagnosis: given several equally logically credible hypotheses, one selects the most pragmatic, that is, the one which will most likely lead to implementable effective treatment. So the truth of an explanation rests on whether it is useful, not whether it is beyond negation either epistemologically or ontologically. Pragmatic truth is not limited by the materialistic bias of ordinary empiricism, and does not require any foundational objectivist claims. Nor does it care for the idealist (in the sense of not realist) bias of religionism, and neither does it require any foundational subjectivist claims.
Contrary to the notion that science will never be able to support proof of the existence of what have been thought of as spiritual concepts, there is fascinating research going on in institutions such as the Institute for Noetic Science (IONS) that employ this abductive, pragmatic perspective. For example, IONS scientists (Garret Yount et al.) are in the pilot phase of an experiment (2019, Energy healers Pilot Study) that has energy healers working on sufferers of carpal tunnel pain in the presence of a ‘noetic field’ medium. They include several objective indicators of changes in this hypothetical field, such as samples of water that are assessed pre- and post-experimentally by spectrographic analysis, and random number generators (RNGs) running in the vicinity of these treatments. Whenever the healers and/or the medium make claims that there are non-physical beings assisting in the treatments, data from the water and the RNGs are assessed versus the baseline of measurements in the absence of such claims, and they find that there are significant changes in the data far beyond the probabilities of chance.
Other groups of researchers in groups such as the Scientific and Medical Network and the Galileo Commission are exploring how classical scientific method can probe into spiritual or psychic areas formerly assumed to be impenetrable by objectivist experimentation. So the leap from ontology to epistemology is happening right now, just because there are open-minded explorers in the field with science and statistical training. And (why am I not surprised?) they are finding that perennial traditions of thought on the soul, non-physical beings, intelligent perfusion of the field of matter and so on are supportable and credible positions.
 Quotes are from Glanzberg, Michael, “Truth”, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Summer 2021 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.), retrieved from: https://plato.stanford.edu/archives/sum2021/entries/truth/
S. Hilary Anne Ivory, PhD, B.Ed.
228 Storms Rd. RR 2 Milford ON K0K 2P0
Logically, beautifully explained (I am from Milford, Conn).
A bit of background on Russell and Whitehead. The german logician Gottlob Frege had proposed that mathematics is fundamentally a form of logic. In the Principia Methematica, Whitehead and Russell attempted to demonstrate that Frege’s intuition was correct (note, they were dealing here with epistemology); however, it was a bridge to far. Later, Kurt Goedel furnished a proof (his Incompleteness Theorems, and his undecideability theorem) that important theorems that exist for a logico-mathematical system could not in principle be proven, although inconsistencies might be found or stumbled into (this applies to large computer programs that appear to work well, untill the crash, or a bug is founding their logic). Godel’s proofs demonstrated that the goals of Frege, and of Whitehead and Russell were unatainable.
So now, we may infer that any grand mathematical model of physical phenomena may always be susceptible to unproveable derivations, or, worse yet, may have bugs that may only be found accidently. We simply cannot assume reliability for any math model of reality to provide certain knowledge about reality (to ontologiocal proof).
Furthermore, in my own research, I realize that our physical location in the universe precluded our ability to empirically discover how it was created; consider that fishes who spend their entire existence within their fish tank can never be certain about how their tank was constucted and where the water in it came from; empirical science requires observation relevant to what it may claim about reality, but the relevant observations must be made exterior to the object studied to achieve certainty; as mortal, we are stuck in our world and cannot get outside of it to observe it and its history. I termed this the Principle of Interior Unknowability (PIU).
Likewise for consciousness. Our personal conscousness operates in a Universal Field of Consciousness (i.e., God’s mind), so we are unable to scientifically observe it, or other consciousness cases, as external, independent observers.
For an in depth discussion of the PIU, see my text (published as a printed journal edition or as an ebook by googling Jack Hiller, Space, Time and Consciousness).
Yes, I know about Prof Fallon and it is a head scratcher, even to him. but in general, most old souls feel more of a oneness with the universe that others don’t feel
Oh my dear beautiful and extremely brilliant Hilary, Jack and Lola, years ago at an afterlife conference a retired physicist explained to me over drinks that the dirty secret of physics is that you can make the numbers say whatever you want them to say. Is this true? Was he right?
There is fudging when the data do not come in right. It was reported that Newton fudged his data to make his gravity theory work, but because of poor measurement his fudged data were more accurate.
Prof Planck had been having trouble as he worked to collect data for use in his model for black body thermal radiation. To make his equation balance, he grudingly inserted a small constant to make the equation work; he was originally fudging. Later on, he realized his fudge factor actually represented an extremely important condition of matter/energy, later termed Planck’s constant; The Planck constant earned him the Nobel Award in Physics.
The models for Climate change are numerous, and all but the Russian model are so far of when doing postdiction to chewck for accuracy, that their parameters are routinely changed from what they were supposed to be in theory; these models also continue to greatly overestimate waming, year by year; really scandolous as their predictions obviously make themselves important and attract funding from governments, the UN, and other folks with agendas.
In the case of quantum mechanics, as I’ve mentioned before (Google Jack H Hiller On the nature of subatomic particles), because of an overuse of Operationalism, Heisenberg, Bohr, and Schrodinger defined subatomic particles in their natural state to be unreal statistical distributions of possible states, termed the superposition state. It was this mistaken definition that lead to the silly outcome that Schrodinger’s cat would be both alive and dead until actually observed.
Oh my dear Jack, you have just shattered all of my illusions! And even my great hero, the so illustrious Dr. Planck was a math-fudger! I knew that all the climate math was being fudged – that has been pretty clear for awhile, or we all would have floated off in a sea of melting ice a long time ago – but, even Sir Isaac Newton fudged gravity?? It’s a wonder that we all don’t just float off into space!
Dear Roberta and Jack. It comforts me to find out that even mathematicians must rely on intuition sometimes ( at least when it is correct, and especially when it results in a Nobel Award ).
Alas, my dear lovely Ray, I think that especially when it results in a Nobel Prize, there is probably quite a lot of fudging being done!
Creative scientific work, novel artistry, musical and mathematical genius– all derive from intuition, and the deepest intuition is from the soul, with the soul in touch with the mind of God. This have I’ve elaborated on in God, Mathematics and the Physical Sciences, and with Kevin Williams on his NDE website: https://near-death.com/trigger-of-mental-dysfunction/ discussing what appears to be mental dysfunctioning.
Jack, I was impressed by your recent commentary “existence in heaven is pure bliss…” I was unsure if you were suggesting that leading an evil life here would not affect that degree of bliss in the life to follow.
Tom, of course I do not know. From my research and intuition, I expect a poorly led life, as judged by one’s own spirit, will lead to going back for more educational opportunties toward spiritual development. For myself, I am so used to the challenges of living, with boredom so quick after any success, I fear I will stupidly return here whatever my developmental status might be.
Oh my dear wonderful Jack, you do always make me smile! I think the glories of the afterlife may well pose the ultimate challenge for you. Can we give even Jack stimulation enough to avoid boring him in the end? Is that even possible? Well, we shall see!
I felt prompted to write this little bit of verse yesterday, and it seems apt:
He dreamed His dream
There had been nothing to see
No light, no love
Then all eternity to be
now filled from above
Who knows when and why
He dreamed His dreams of love
His newly created sky
with sparkling star lights above
and all souls owning His special love
The stars we see
are born and die
but His soul companions forever will be
sharing His eternity.