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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Briefly back to the philosophical

Interrupting my in-progress poem Two Souls, I want to make a more-than-mental note of a couple ideas brought to my recent attention. Each hearkens me back to the series of posts I began a few months ago (and unfortunately dropped due to distractions) regarding the necessity for a new 21st Century Ethos.

I'll try to incorporate both into the continuation of that discussion, which I hope to pick up again very soon.

First, there's a very interesting article in June's Wired Magazine, which features a discussion of the New New Economy. The article is called "The New Socialism: Global Collectivist Society Is Coming Online." Its title is sure to provoke a negative response from Americans who for sixty years have been taught to recoil at the mere mention of the "S" word. Getting beyond that first reaction, it's very much worth reading for its examination of the new forms of social media and how they are creating a greater tendency toward and preference for collaboration and collective action.

The next idea that caught my fancy is the concept of Biocentrism that a friend referenced in a Tweet last week. Below is a passage pulled from Wikipedia that lays out the main points, but I encourage you to read the full article on Biocentrism:
According to Robert Lanza biocentrism has seven principles.

1. What we perceive as reality is a process that involves our consciousness. An "external" reality, if it existed, would by definition have to exist in space. But this is meaningless, because space and time are not absolute realities but rather tools of the human and animal mind.

2. Our external and internal perceptions are inextricably intertwined. They are different sides of the same coin and cannot be divorced from one another.

3. The behavior of subatomic particles, indeed all particles and objects, is inextricably linked to the presence of an observer. Without the presence of a conscious observer, they at best exist in an undetermined state of probability waves.

4. Without consciousness, "matter" dwells in an undetermined state of probability. Any universe that could have preceded consciousness only existed in a probability state.

5. The structure of the universe is explainable only through biocentrism. The universe is fine-tuned for life, which makes perfect sense as life creates the universe, not the other way around. The "universe" is simply the complete spatio-temporal logic of the self.

6. Time does not have a real existence outside of animal-sense perception. It is the process by which we perceive changes in the universe.

7. Space, like time, is not an object or a thing. Space is another form of our animal understanding and does not have an independent reality. We carry space and time around with us like turtles with shells. Thus, there is no absolute self-existing matrix in which physical events occur independent of life.
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