Tuesday, February 23, 2010
"The Complementarity of Mind and Body:
Realizing the Dream of Descartes, Einstein, and Eccles"
Including a chapter by Stan Tenen,
"Linguistic Cosmology: The Language of Creation"
Some of the other contributors:
Karl Pribram, professor at Georgetown University , and an emeritus professor of psychology and psychiatry at Stanford University and Radford University.
Fred A. Wolf, theoretical physicist and writer on the subjects of quantum physics, consciousness, and their relationship.
Henry P. Stapp, American physicist, well-known for his work in quantum mechanics.
Francisco Di Biase, neurosurgeon, consciousness researcher and author working also with brain mapping and computed tomography.
Mihai Draganescu, engineer, author, essayist and philosopher. Member and Chairman of Romanian Academy.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Scientism is the quasi-religious belief that science has answers to all questions. Scientism, like other faiths, is not concerned about objective reproducible experimental demonstrations. It's a belief system that includes the false belief that today's science is complete and correct, and that science is a static "stack of facts" and/or "stack of data", when in fact science is a dynamic pursuit where all findings and theories are works in progress that are expected to evolve. For more, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientism
2) Pseudo-science (pseudo means false):
The pseudo-sciences attempt to take on the form of science, even where it doesn't apply. While practitioners would dispute it, most psychology and most "political science" is not science at all, even though these use some of the methods of science.
For example, pseudo-scientists believe that anything that can be statistically evaluated is scientific. But statistics is only a tool of science. Quackery can be statistically tested, but that doesn't make it science.
For more, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudoscience .
3) Quasi-science (quasi means "looks like, but isn't"):
Quasi-science is similar to pseudo-science, and includes the "mystical arts" such as tarot and numerology. Magical and religious formulas and rites are quasi-science. Quasi-science alleges to be science, because like pseudo-science, it uses some of the forms of science. Quasi-science cannot be successfully objectively tested.
[Not everyone bothers to distinguish pseudo-science from quasi-science, so the above Wikipedia reference on pseudo-science also applies to what we're calling quasi-science.]
Science (sometimes referred to as "hard science") is and is defined by the scientific method, which includes an explicit pre-stated theory to be tested, and its objective repeated experimental testing. The most important principle of the scientific method is falsifiability. Attempting to prove that one is wrong is anathema to scholars, believers in scientism, pseudo-science, and quasi-science. But it is the basis of all true science.
If there is no pre-stated theory to be tested where the test can succeed or fail, it's not science.
There are no absolute proofs in science, only temporary theories that are always works in progress, and that are always changing and evolving so as to include new data and new facts.
Most importantly, science is based on pre-stated conjectures and theories that can be demonstrated and at least potentially refuted. Einstein said that a scientific theory should _not_ be evaluated based on data or facts, but rather only on whether or not it has internal coherence and self-consistency. This is because science can never know the absolute truth, but it can insist on coherent models that make predictions that can be tested for reliability and consistency with reality.
For more, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method.
Friday, May 22, 2009
Stay updated with new videos and other media at www.meruwest.org. Also, we have some new videos coming up on YouTube so be sure to become a subscriber to get notifications when they are posted. You can use the link on meruwest.org or on Youtube go to "filmguy2121."
Have a great week!
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
From Stan Tenen:
The problem with talking only about the "literal meaning" of the bible is that there is no plain literal meaning to a work that has four levels (PRDS). It's misleading. What we understand as the pshat, which we call the "literal" meaning, is not the literal meaning without the commentaries that tell us what it is. And the pendulum has swung too far. We wholeheartedly cling to the literal meaning, even while we remember a footnote that tells us that there are other levels, but we only give lip service to the deeper levels. And this leads simple people to exaggerate the literal, at the expense of the more complete. Pretty soon, we have translations like the scholars and the religious fundamentalists make, that have no reference to Oral Torah, and while they're literal, they're not the "literal" that we mean.
We should stop telling ourselves that the Bible stories are Torah per se. We should make it clear that the Bible stories are the garments of Torah, and that they're necessary and a reasonably good history. But without the other levels, they're misleading.
Here's a prime example.
It's generally taken that the literal meaning of "an eye for an eye" implies a nasty vengeful God, who suggests we should have our eye plucked out if we've injured another's eye. This is the literal meaning. But it's completely wrong, and it has done enormous damage to Judaism and Torah, because it has enabled non-Jews to call Hashem cruel. The word being translated eye - Ayin - does not mean an "eye" as a thing. An eye has a function, and it's this function that is being referred to. The function of an eye -- its deeper meaning -- is to take in a field of view and a spectrum. So "an eye for an eye" actually means, "a spectrum of causes leads
(inevitably) to a spectrum of consequences." This is the golden rule -- "what goes around comes around." This is "Torah on one foot" and it has nothing to do with the slander that labels Hashem as cruel compared to the concept of God held by other faiths. Personally, I think a picture is worth 1000 words (as long as it's not a picture of an idol)
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Meru Project findings demonstrate that the relationship between physical theory and consciousness, expressed in explicit geometric metaphor, was understood and developed several thousand years ago. This relationship also explains the paradoxical affinity of our spiritual traditions for what seems to be number mysticism and geometric form. While this theory may require us to reassess common presumptions about the nature and quality of our spiritual traditions, it will also serve to reinvigorate the healthy core of these traditions, illuminate their origins and their inherent differences, and make clear how the growth of our civilization was and is dependent on them.
These concepts were developed and claimed by a wide range of otherwise distinct traditions because they are common to all human experience. Therefore, the geometric metaphor could serve as a bridge of mutual respect and understanding between these traditions, without blurring the critical distinctions that make each unique. The common geometric tools of the original Hebrew and later Abrahamic and Greek world-views can be seen in perspective, demonstrated, and mutually appreciated. (Similar concepts also appear in eastern traditions, but this has not been explored.)
This model, because it is based on self-propagation and embryonic growth, can be applied to the study of a wide range of self-organizing, independently acting, and self-learning systems including those associated with artificial intelligence and expert systems.
This is also an ecological model with immediate applications. It illustrates the inherent interdependent organic structure of whole systems. It was - and is - intended to be applied to social, psychological, political, and commercial organization.
This is a powerful interdisciplinary model. It can integrate embryology, geometry, physics, language, psychology, athletics, and dance into one educational system. Young people find that this model provides an intuitive foundation and appreciation for hyper-dimensional concepts and their relationship to organic growth and self-organization.
The geometric metaphor is a powerful aid to understanding the historical impact of mathematics, as well as its essential place in our lives.
AN ORGANIC MODEL OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION:
THE TREE OF ABRAHAM
Poster ©2002 Stan Tenen
The "Tree of Abraham, an Organic Model of Western Civilization," is an attempt to illustrate the intrinsic cyclic relationship among the three Abrahamic covenants. They overlap in time, and they are sequential in time. They overlap in space, and they are sequential in space.
There is an historical flow from the perennial tradition to Abraham, and then to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. So, we can make a model that shows the perennial pre-history, surrounded by Judaism, surrounded by Christianity, surrounded by Islam, and now again, surrounded in the world by the perennial history we are making today. When we look back in time through Islam, we see Christianity, and when we look back in time through Christianity, we see Judaism, and before that, perennial and unbounded history. This is the flow of civilization and time, moving from a metaphoric Jewish seed, through a metaphoric Christian tree, to a metaphoric Islamic fruit.
We also have all three traditions as three phases of life, together at the same time in our time. The conceptual phase is identified with Judaism, the gestational phase with Christianity, and the letting-go (birthing) phase with Islam. Of course, each of these phases of faith must include the other two, because this is all happening all at once, right now, just as it is also happening eternally, cyclically, and throughout history.
Life grows both ways. Life grows sequentially in time, and it grows spread out in different organs within an organism at any given time.
(An earlier poster introducing this model can be found at www.meru.org/Posters/JCI.html. Additional material on this theme can be found in our section on Making Peace with Geometry.)
This poster, and its companion poster, The Tree of Abraham, present a visual geometric model for viewing the relationships among main cultural "players" in the Middle East. The three Abrahamic faiths are organs of a single, unified living system. See also an earlier essay by Stan Tenen, The Three Pillars of Love, at www.meru.org/Newsletter/3pillarsoflove.html.
These posters complement both The Three Pillars of Love and Meru's Draft Architectural Proposal for the New York World Trade Center.
For additional material on this topic, see also Making Peace with Geometry.