Toward a Unified Metaphysical Understanding - Tag: conditioning    
 What is the highest perceived benefit or aspiration of my Life?

Only a few hours ago the I Ching urged me to commit to my highest aspiration and to announce my intention. It said "Make known the arrival of a message from heaven and announce it at the Earth altar. If you don't deliver your important message you will be cut off and isolated. Call out. Tell us now. Now!" Then along comes an invitation to do so on Facebook, which motivated this... :)

So, what is the highest perceived benefit or aspiration of my Life?

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 Motivation behind my work
My initial motivation was the need to resolve the tension between my rational and spiritual sides. Once that was eased my attention also turned to the civilisation-wide tension between science and spirituality.

There is so much needless suffering and destruction that arises from misguided sciences, misguided religions, the conflict between them all and the resulting confusions and dysfunctions that permeate our cultures and minds.

I really believe that this tension can eventually be resolved and out of that will arise a unified science/spirituality that will have a lasting positive influence on our whole civilisation; so profound that we can barely even imagine what it will be like from our current vantage point.

There are so many people contributing in different ways to this process of unification at present and my greatest hope is to serve some useful role in that effort...

"There is this hope, I cannot promise you whether or when it will be realized - that the mechanistic paradigm, with all its implications in science as well as in society and our own private life, will be replaced by an organismic or systems paradigm that will offer new pathways for our presently schizophrenic and self-destructive civilization." (Ludwig von Bertalanffy, Founder of general systems theory)

Schizophrenia seems to be a problem where there is no means for thoughts to be coherently 'grounded' in truth or reality, hence the tension of confusion builds upon itself creating more confusion and running out of control.

If the wikipedia description is interpreted as applying to our civilisation rather than an individual person it is surprisingly relevant to our current situation as reflected in politics, media, social breakdown, etc:

"Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by a breakdown of thought processes and by impaired emotional responses. Common symptoms are delusions including paranoia and hallucinations, disorganized thinking and a lack of emotional intelligence. It is accompanied by significant social dysfunction. The onset of symptoms typically occurs in young adulthood."

In the case of our civilisation I would propose that the core confusion is naïve realism, which gives rise to numerous other confusions such as exoteric religion, empirical science, mechanistic views of human nature, oppressive legal and social systems, entrenched struggle for dominance over others, etc. These reinforce the confusions and generate vast amounts of tension throughout civilisation.

I explain this in more detail in "Simplified Anatomy of the Global Systemic Crisis and How to Heal Civilisation"

 What is a differend?
A differend is a form of invisible oppression. It was first examined in the context of a post-modern analysis of the judicial system and oppressed classes, however it applies to all human interactions.

“A damage occurs when one being is harmed by another. Many kinds of damage may be litigated against, taken to court, proven, and compensated for. But sometimes a damage cannot be expressed, whether because the being who undergoes the damage is unable to speak in a language to which the judges will listen (as in the case of animals, children, the mentally ill, the dead), or because the judges are the ones who have done the damage, whether directly or through affiliation, or because the testimony of the one damaged is deprived of authority for whatever reason. Such a scenario is called a differend, and the person who suffers from both a damage and a loss of the ability to prove it is a victim...

... “subjects are constituted through exclusion, that is, through the creation of a domain of deauthorized subjects, presubjects, figures of abjection, populations erased from view.” It is a question of “who qualifies as a ‘who’” and hence of who can speak, whose testimony will be heard. The silencing of certain voices, the effacement of certain persons’ sufferings, is achieved through the denial that they are “whos,” or through their abjection, and this makes violence to them permissible, indeed invisible.” [link]  More >

 Freedom, Slavery and Fundamental Limits on the Growth of Civilisation
"... for some reason it appears we’ve given up our freedom to varying degrees in exchange for something. But in exchange for what? Security? Acceptance? Ease? It sure appears that way. But how did this come about? ... Looking at the contrived and extremely controlling political and economic structure of our planet’s various societies and the miserable state of most of its inhabitants, it’s clear something is seriously wrong." (Does Humanity Even Want Freedom? [link])

It is clear that in countless overt and subtle ways we are losing our freedom. Why is this happening? And importantly, how far might this proceed and how can we *effectively* resist it?  More >

 Regarding the nature of reality and the 'world'
This is an edited version of my comments from a recent conversation with a good friend Glisten (with extra comments to clarify a couple points).  More >

 A True Current of Western Spirituality or a Partial Realisation?

I was recently asked my opinion on the work and teachings of A.H. Almaas, called the Diamond Approach. This article is not a general review of his work, it is about something that I believe to be a common misconception of spirituality, particularly throughout the West (e.g. many proponents of Integral philosophy). However I found in Almaas' work a clear and succinct expression of that misconception, which has inspired me to say something about it now.

Firstly let me say that I am not familiar with Almaas or his work, however after reading an article on the core principles, written by him and an interview with him I think I can sense the gist of where he is coming from. He has many deep insights that suggest genuine realisations, hence I suspect that many spiritual aspirants could get some benefit from his fusion of depth psychology with aspects of both dualist and nondual spirituality. That is all I have to say regarding his work in general.

However, from my perspective and the perspective of Eastern spirituality, he succumbs to a critical mistake. It is this mistake that I will discuss here because it is very limiting and it is prevalent and growing in popularity throughout the West.

I am talking about a misconception of spirituality that is based on a partial realisation that is mistaken for a full realisation. The seeker attains a degree of realisation, but mainly at an intellectual level, which has not penetrated very deeply into their subconscious / unconscious mind – they are often not even aware that it should penetrate deeply or how deep it must go before one has full realisation. Hence they believe themselves to be realised and to understand the spiritual path, even whilst the bulk of their mind is unconsciously dominated by the ego and still bound within the illusory world that the ego imagines itself to inhabit and the illusory life that the ego imagines that it is living.

The partial realisation results in thinking that could be phrased as “Okay, so now I'm realised, but I'm still me, an individual person in the world - so what now? How can this realisation help me and others to lead a better, more spiritual life? That is after all what spirituality is really about.” This thinking results in the tendency to approach spirituality more as a spiritually themed lifestyle for the ego as it lives its illusory life in the world. Rather than seeking to deepen their realisation and eventually attain full and complete realisation of reality and truth, and thereby overcome the ego and all of its delusions; thus traversing the greatest paradigm shift of all and coming to apprehend and live in reality, which is radically different to what the ego imagines.  More >

 Shadow Personality and the Poisoning of the Mind

Recently I have been feeling harassed by someone and yesterday during "peace negotiations" with them I realised why they were behaving how they were, and I took a fresh look at myself and saw that I also do a similar thing - it helped me to understand many things about my life. I'll try to explain what I realised and what that meant to me. Perhaps this insight might be of some use to you if adapted to your life...

Firstly, I'll describe how they were behaving, at least according to my perceptions. Have you ever known someone who came to look at you through shit-coloured glasses and assume that was the real you? And then tried to “help you” by seducing you and others to see you in that shitty way? And they did all this in the name of Love? And they misunderstood your attempts to clarify things as defensiveness? And they remain staunchly self-righteous – believing themselves to be a beacon of loving kindness?

I realised that I also do this to others by looking at aspects of society (such as propaganda, entrenched confusions, self-reinforcing closed loops of hidden assumptions, outmoded paradigms, etc) through shit-coloured glasses and stating my views rather harshly at times. I do this out of love for the victims of illusion and its resulting suffering, the oppressed, the deceived and the exploited. I also do it out of love for truth, reality, decency, honour, peace and health. However this is only one view and most people see things differently, for instance those seeking comfortable illusions or distractions, those seeking power and dominance, those seeking mayhem and chaos, etc. It is a subtle trap to fall into one-sidedness and to denigrate the ways of others. Even if one knows that those ways are destructive and dangerous it is not productive to denigrate them. Even if those following those ways (e.g. authoritarians, mass media, materialists, egotists, fanatics, etc) routinely denigrate other ways.

As part of a propaganda campaign it is standard practice to spread a one-sided view and to denigrate other views, however this is really a form of cultural violence, and violence begets violence. If one truly believes that it is truth that will set us free, then one must accept all ways no matter how abhorrent they may appear. One should not condone them, but one shouldn't react with hatred towards them. Instead accept them as part of what is and find ways to help the whole situation evolve towards a healthier state. Rather than focus on attacking the negatives one can focus on nurturing the positives.

Of course, this doesn't mean that I should never warn people of dangers. That would be irresponsible, it just means that there are times, places and ways of doing this. I must also learn to accept that many people will blindly wander into suffering and despair and there is nothing that I or anyone else can do about it. Making regular snide remarks and disparaging comments about these destructive paths is not going to turn anyone away from them, it will only make people bitter towards me and more entrenched in their ways, whilst at the same time corrupting my expressions and obstructing my communications with others.

Overcoming negative reactions is not easy though, there are subtle mind-games that must be overcome. I have found that in myself some of these are related to the activities of the shadow, that part of ourselves that we habitually deny even exists. That is what this article is about...  More >

 Purifying one's mind and infowar both personal and global

Hello again everyone :)

I hope you have all been well!

I have been away for a while, maintaining abstinence from all in-depth discussions in order to still the mind and focus it. I'm not about to dive back into the fray of online discussions but I have re-opened my facebook profile for now and will generally hover on the periphery of cyberspace for a while. For those of you who are interested, I'll share a little of what has transpired for me over the past couple of months.

I've journeyed far and wide in a metaphorical sense, stilling the mind to explore deeply into certain issues, as well as going beyond the realm of ideas and emotions (the symbolic content of awareness) to penetrate deep within consciousness itself (the stream of awareness). Delving down through the layers, from the conscious mind, down through the unconscious and into the psychosomatic interface between body and mind. From this vantage point some very interesting work has been done and will continue. However this is getting ahead of myself, I'll back track and tell a little story, which also sheds light on information wars, propaganda, oppression, authoritarianism, effective resistance and other issues relevant to our times.  More >

 Naïve Realism Discussed in the Lankavatara Sutra

Quote from the Lankavatara Sutra

"So long as people do not understand the true nature of the objective world, they fall into the dualistic view of things. They imagine the multiplicity of external objects to be real and become attached to them and are nourished by their habit energy. Because of this system of mentation, mind and what belongs to it is discriminated and is thought of as real; this leads to the assertion of an ego-soul and its belongings, and thus the mind-system goes on functioning. Depending upon and attaching itself to the dualistic habit of mind, they accept the views of the philosophers founded upon these erroneous distinctions, of being and non-being, existence and non-existence, and there evolves what we call false-imaginations...

False-imaginations rise from the consideration of appearances; things are discriminated as to form, signs and shape; as to having colour, warmth, humidity, mobility or rigidity. False-imagination consists of becoming attached to these appearances and their names... The five sense functions and their discriminating and thinking function have their risings and complete ending from moment to moment... By setting up names and forms greed is multiplied and thus the mind goes on mutually conditioning and being conditioned. By becoming attached to names and forms, not realising that they have no more basis than the activities of the mind itself, error arises, false-imagination as to pleasure and pain arises, and the way to emancipation is blocked...

By the cessation of the mind-system as a whole is meant, the cessation of discrimination, the clearing away of the various attachments, and, therefore, the clearing away of the defilements of habit-energy in the face of Universal Mind which have been accumulating since beginningless time by reason of these discriminations, attachments, erroneous reasonings, and following acts... Getting rid of the discriminating mortal-mind is Nirvana.

But the cessation of the discriminating-mind cannot take place until there has been a “turning about” in the deepest seat of consciousness. The mental habit of looking outward by the discriminating-mind upon an external objective world must be given up, and a new habit of realising Truth within the intuitive-mind by becoming one with the Truth itself must be established.... With the ending of pleasure and pain, of conflicting ideas, of the disturbing interests of egoism, a state of tranquilisation will be attained in which the truths of emancipation will be fully understood..." (Lankavatara Sutra )

 Recent Work

Lately my focus has been primarily on inner work hence there has been very little published for a while. But below are some links to some recent work.

Unification of Science: A brief outline of the path towards unifying introspective science (Eastern spirituality) and empirical science (Western science).

Roots of Meaning: an essay on meaning, conditioning and misunderstanding - proposes a way to overcome entrenched misunderstanding.

Perception, Cognition & Communication Ontology: to help clearly reason about what we experience, think and say.

Exploratory Analysis of Naive and Unified Realism: uses the PCC ontology to clearly explain the difference between naive and unified realism.

SMN Latest Version: Introduces the latest version of the SMN general system simulator.

How Does SMN Work: Introduction to the details of how the SMN algorithm works.

SMN Ontology: An ontology showing the logical structure of the SMN algorithm.

SMN System Modelling Using Ontologies: A tutorial introducing the idea of using ontologies to create system models that can be immediately simulated in SMN.

STAR: STriking at the Roots - a proposal for a project to identify the root causes of systemic social dysfunction throughout history and work towards rectifying the situation.

I have also brought an end to the experiment with public discussion of these issues, it has not been successful, hence there are no more public comments on this blog. If you wish to discuss these things then email me.

 The Gaian-Ego Hypothesis Release

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The Gaian-Ego Hypothesis

This book was started over a year ago but was put aside, however now it feels like the right time to finish it off and publish it. It is mostly finished and will be complete in a couple of weeks. Read it online at

Here is a quote of the brief version of the central idea:

“The ecosystem consists of all organisms including ourselves. It is the body of a planetary super-organism that some call Gaia and we organisms are cells within that body, just as organisms are cellular ecosystems. The large scale ecological dynamics involving climate, forests, mountain ranges and oceans comprise the overall physiological processes of that super-organism. The interactions between individual organisms comprise the detailed biochemical processes analogous to those between cells within an organism.

However we humans are rather specialised organisms because our interactions channel information and are therefore analogous to neurological processes. Our human interactions create society and culture which give rise to the mind of Gaia. Our informal culture, composed of individual communication and interaction, is Gaia's subconscious mind. Our power structures and the public discourse, composed of legislation, institutions, mass media and academia, are the conscious mind of Gaia. Mass media, diplomatic channels and telecommunications are the conduit of conscious thought for Gaia.

The feedback loops between mass communication and individual communication form the space in which culture resonates and comes to experience itself. Within this cultural/macro-cognitive scenario a collective ego has arisen that experiences itself as an individual being and uses society as “its body”. Just as within human organisms, which possess a complex self-reflective mind, an ego arises that experiences itself as an individual being and uses the organism as “its body”.

Whilst there are individuals and elites seeking to dominate and exploit, things aren't that simple, they are the most conditioned by the collective ego, which is manifesting through them the most strongly. There is a deeper reason why whole populations allow themselves to be oppressed and have done so for thousands of years. The ego within each of us oppresses ourselves and forms into a collective ego that oppresses us all. This is an emergent systemic phenomenon that is far older and more powerful than anything any small group of humans could create and sustain. All the conspiracies and politics are just symptoms of this phenomenon and not its real cause. Civilisation has gone through cycle after cycle of regimes and revolutions, with great suffering and destruction, and this is perhaps our last chance to break out of that loop and move on to something new.

The more control that the collective ego gains over “its body” the more we organisms become enslaved in a subtle yet all pervasive totalitarian regime. It imposes its perspective and drives the situation in pursuit of its agendas, thereby destroying the fabric of both the society and the ecosystem. Just as the human ego conceives of the ramifications of its abuses as 'ill-health' and 'ageing', so too does the collective ego fail to comprehend the true cause and only seeks to eradicate the symptoms in order to continue pursuing its agendas.

As cells within this collective organism our interactions are its metabolic processes, which make it what it is. If we are unconsciously manipulated we serve the collective ego but if we are aware we support the health of the super-organism. Through communicating our awareness we share it with others and spread the light of awareness. This casts out the shadows of ignorance, which returns the entire system to a state of balance and holistic health.”

Read it online at

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 Thoughts on the Outline of a Unified Science

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Thoughts on the Outline of a Unified Science

Firstly, what does “unified science” mean?

Unified: (1) formed or united into a whole ... (2) operating as a unit; e.g. "a unified utility system" [1]

Science: (from the Latin scientia, 'knowledge'), in the broadest sense, refers to any systematic knowledge or practice...

The word science comes through the Old French, and is derived from the Latin word scientia for knowledge, which in turn comes from scio. 'I know'. The Indo-European root means to discern or to separate, akin to Sanskrit chyati, he cuts off, Greek schizein, to split, Latin scindere, to split. From the Middle Ages to the Enlightenment, science or scientia meant any systematic recorded knowledge. Science therefore had the same sort of very broad meaning that philosophy had at that time. In other languages, including French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian, the word corresponding to science also carries this meaning. [2]

Thus “unified science” refers to “any systematic knowledge or practice” that is “formed or united into a whole” and “operating as a unit”.

How does this relate to empirical science?  More >

 Scientistic Heresy

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Scientistic Heresy

Also see Thoughts on the Outline of a Unified Science.

The value and power of the scientific method when applied properly is plain to see, however too often it is used for political purposes, to suppress enquiry into areas that challenge unquestioned beliefs and to push certain agendas. This is a clear abuse of the scientific method, one that not only the scientific community must address, but the whole of humanity because science has become a fundamental guiding principle in our civilisation.

There is a prevailing belief that science is somehow immune to human weakness, that scientists somehow have "minds washed clean from opinions" (Francis Bacon) but this is a very unscientific approach to science. Such an obvious self-deception at the core of the scientific community leaves it (and our entire civilisation) open to disaster.

This obvious contradiction in science is largely a result of the particulars of the origins of modern western science, as a reaction to the trauma of previous abuses of reason (see Naïve Realism and Empiricism). But one cannot fight un-reason with un-reason, and science must question the motives behind its entrenched position in regards to many subjects. There is no place for the politics of manipulation within a genuine scientific method.

There has been for some time a propaganda-war between politicised-science (Scientism) and politicised-Christianity and many minds have been caught in the cross-fire. For those who have been deceived into believing that science is actually what it claims to be, below are a few links that illustrate some of the cracks in the otherwise smooth façade of self-deceptive propaganda.

If we are to reclaim genuine science for humanity then we must slip through cracks such as these and escape the fools debate. (also see Reclaiming Genuine Religion for Humanity and Virtual Reality Analogy Alongside Science and Mysticism)

To help those that are willing to help themselves, this is just a brief sample of documents on the subject to serve as a jumping off point for further research.  More >

 What is Knowledge, Science and Reasoning?
I have noted that there are many people who are operating as knowledge workers but who have very little understanding of knowledge itself. Many people have been driven by necessity to analyse, disseminate and debate knowledge but unless they know what knowledge is, what facts are, what evidence is and so on they often end up caught in frustrating and confusing discussions that do little to improve our collective knowledge.

To help those who are willing to help themselves, here are some links related to the subject. There are approximately 50 pages of links with quotes from the linked pages and a few comments of my own interspersed throughout. This just provides an overview of some of the major terms and issues involved and the links may serve as a jumping off point for further research. If a term is interesting to you then please do further searches on the term to find out more about it.

The article was too long for this NCN blog so see it on my website:
What is Knowledge, Science and Reasoning?

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 Naïve Realism and Empiricism

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There are ancient roots to the use of observation and rational thinking to understand the world but here I am addressing the issue of modern 'empiricism'.

Also see these articles on naïve realism,   Scientistic Heresy,   Reclaiming Genuine Religion for Humanity and Thoughts on the Outline of a Unified Science.  More >

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