Three Universes

15 11 2008

We consider ourselves members of this concrete 3-D world (4-D, if we consider time a dimension, or 25-D if we follow String Theory), but when we boil it all down, we really are not. Everything we see, hear, touch; everything we experience must be related to our brains from the sensory organs, and it must be reconstructed within the confines of our sculls by a fancy neural network, which we familiarly know as a brain. The experience doesn’t happen if the signal never gets to the brain, and the experience doesn’t match the event if the brain reconstructs it incorrectly. I would argue that the mind, which is the theater of all experience, happens in the brain, arguably, and is not bound by the concrete rules of the physical world.

Think of what it takes to convey my own idea to you: I experience the thought in my own head, but I can not extract that thought and put it directly into your mind. Instead, I must translate the idea into a language, and convey that verbal construct through a series of computers to you. You must then see the visual pattern, translate it into language, and use that language to reconstruct an approximation of my original idea. That we can communicate at all is a marvel. If I tell a story, I can assure you that there will be a great deal of difference between your mental experience of the story and my own.

The mind is an abstract thing. This becomes exceedingly clear when we sleep. Our dreams tend not to have the order and law that the physical world has, so our experience is quite different from reality. Likewise, a fantasy prone individual may hardly even see reality for what it is, but instead experiences a fabrication.

It is easy to say that experience is nothing and reality is everything, but what is experience? The fact that there is only one brain among billions that contributes to my experience would suggest that there is more to my experiencing than mere cerebral function. The other six-billion brains out there function quite nicely but do not give rise to my experience. In theory, if this is a physical world only, then no human brain is unique enough to give rise to my very unique experience.

So my mind, which is the experience of a thought, arises from the physical actions of some brain cells, but it is not, in itself, a physical thing. Yet, it is my mind which is the single most important aspect of myself, for without it, I am no more “me” than I am “you.” I am not the guy next door, because my mind does not arise from his brain. Within this fantastic little universe is where I do all of my experiencing. No experience happens outside of it. When I experience a real thing, what I experience is my mind. When I experience an imagined thing, what I experience is still my mind. If I lose my ability to remember anything, I still have my mind, even if I do not realize that I am still thinking because I can not remember doing it even a millisecond earlier. Yet, I continue to experience. If I were cut off from my senses I would be trapped within a universe all my own, but here’s the kicker:

Even when I’m awake and in touch with reality I am still trapped within a universe all my own. No one can plug into my brain and share my experience.

This is the inner universe. The “real world” is a thing that stands alone, based on concrete principles.

When a person invents an idea, then manipulates the physical world to create that imagined thing, the final product is not, itself, the imagined thing, but a near approximation of it. When someone discovers that physical thing, they experience the mental representation of the thing when they see and feel it, but they do not experience the thing itself, directly. This is the barrier between the inner universe, as I call it, and the physical world.

And if, perhaps, there is something bigger than the physical world out there, something that is to our physical world what our physical world is to our minds, then there might naturally be a barrier to that one as well. In order for it to be fully understood in our physical world, then to be understood within our minds, it must take on a physical reconstruction in the likeness of whatever is out there, and it must walk around on earth in a tangible way, or we could never understand it. It is the only way that we can personally know the one who exists outside of our “reality.”

Therefore, if there is a God, and that God created the universe, it follows, then, that he stands outside of it.  For him to be known within it, he must be manifested in a physical way, perhaps in the form of a human messiah, or perhaps in the form of a talking burning bush.  If it stops there, then he has not reached us.  If we see his human form and fail to recognize him, then he has not reached us.  If we are told of his human form, but we fail to believe it or imagine it, then he has not reached us.  The physical manifestation must be internalized and accepted, just as one might internalize and accept a common everyday object as truth.  It’s a two-part deal: he offers, and we receive.

Some might argue that God could short-circuit the process by directly manipulating our minds.  This is true, but I feel inclined to think that he has given us sovereignty over our minds.  I might say that the inner universe is my own personal kingdom, the rights of which are respected even by God himself.  It is my very identity.





2 responses

15 11 2008

Interesting way to look at the reasons for the God-Man.

I disagree though that an experience doesn’t happen simply because the brain doesn’t pick up on it. Many people with nerve damage need to check the parts of their body that the brain doesn’t “experience” to make sure that they haven’t suffered damage.

A paralyzed person can bleed out and die even if the brain/mind has no idea.

13 12 2008
Parallel Universes « Nonaeroterraqueous

[…] have stated in an earlier post, Three Universes, that there exists a certain barrier, not only between God and us, but also between the physical […]

%d bloggers like this: