The science delusion is the belief that science already understands the nature of reality in principle leaving any of the details to be filled in. This is a very widespread belief in our society. It's the kind of belief system of people who say I don't believe in God, I believe in science. It's a belief system which has now been spread to the entire world. But there's a conflict in the heart of science between science as a method of inquiry based on reason, evidence, hypothesis, and collective investigation, and science as a belief system or a worldview - and unfortunately the worldview aspect of science has come to inhibit and constrict the free inquiry, which is the very lifeblood of the scientific endeavor.
Since the late 19th century, science has been conducted under the aspect of a belief system or worldview which is essentially that of materialism, philosophical materialism, and these sciences are now wholly owned subsidiaries of the materialist worldview. I think that as we break out of it the sciences will be regenerated.
What I do in my book the science delusion, which is called science set free in the United States, is take the ten dogmas or assumptions of science and turn them into questions. It's seeing how well they turn how well they stand up if you look at them scientifically. None of them stand out very well. What I engage do is first run through what these 10 dogmas are and then I'll only have time to discuss one or two of them in a bit more detail. But essentially the ten dogmas, which are the default world view of most educated people all over the world are:
This is the default worldview which is held by almost all educated people all over the world. It's the basis of the educational system, the National Health Service, the Medical Research Council, governments, and it's just the default worldview of educated people. But I think every one of these dogmas is very, very questionable and when you look at them, they fall apart.
I'm going to take first the idea that the laws of nature are fixed. This is a hangover from an older worldview before the 1960s when the Big Bang Theory came in. People thought that the whole universe was eternal governed by eternal mathematical laws. When the Big Bang came in then that assumption continued even though the Big Bang revealed a universe that's radically evolutionary, about 14 billion years, old growing and developing and evolving for 14 billion years, growing and cooling, and more structures and patterns appear within it. But the idea is all the laws of nature were completely fixed at the moment of the Big Bang like a cosmic Napoleonic Code. As my friend Terence McKenna used to say, "Modern science is based on the principle: give us one free miracle and we'll explain the rest. And the one free miracle is the appearance of all the matter and energy in the universe and all the laws that govern it from nothing in a single instant."
Well in an evolutionary universe, why shouldn't the laws themselves evolve? And after all human laws do, and the idea of laws of nature is based on a metaphor with human laws. It's a very anthropocentric metaphor; only humans have laws, in fact, only civilized societies have laws. As CS Lewis once said, "To say that a stone falls to earth because it's obeying a law makes it a man and even a citizen." It's a metaphor that we got so used to we forget it's a metaphor.
In an evolving universe I think a much better idea is the idea of habits. I think the habits of nature evolve, the regularities of nature are essentially habitual. This was an idea put forward at the beginning of the 20th century by the American philosophers CS Purse. And it's an idea which various other philosophers have entertained and it's one which I myself have developed into a scientific hypothesis - the hypothesis of morphic resonance, which is the basis of these evolving habits.
According to this hypothesis everything in nature has a kind of collective memory. Resonance occurs on the basis of similarity. As a young giraffe embryo grows in its mother's womb, it tunes in to the morphic resonance of previous giraffes. It draws on that collective memory, it grows like a giraffe, and it behaves like a giraffe because it's drawing on this collective memory. It has to have the right genes to make the right proteins, but genes, in my view, are grossly overrated they only account for the proteins that the organism can make, not the shape or the form or the behavior.
Every species has a kind of collective memory, even crystals do. This theory predicts that if you make a new kind of crystal for the first time, the very first time you make it, it won't have an existing habit. But once it crystallizes, then the next time you make it there will be an influence from the first crystal to the second ones all over the world. By morphic resonance, it'll crystallize a bit easier. The third time, there'll be an influence to the first and second crystals. There is, in fact, good evidence that new compounds get easier to crystallize around the world, just as this theory would predict.
It also predicts that if you train animals to learn a new trick, for example, rats learn a new trick in London, then all around the world rats of the same breed should learn the same trick quicker, just because the rats have landed here. And surprisingly, there's already evidence that this actually happens anyway. That's my own hypothesis in a nutshell of morphic resonance: everything depends on evolving habits, not on fixed laws.
But I want to spend a few moments on the constants of nature too, because these are again usually assumed to be constant. Things like the gravitational constant, the speed of light, are called the fundamental constants. Are they really constant?
Well, when I got interested in this question I tried to find out. Handbooks of physics lists the existing fundamental constants to tell you their value. But I wanted to see if they'd change, so I got the old volumes of physical handbooks I went to the Patent Office library here in London, and they're the only place I could find that kept the old volumes - normally people throw them away when the new values come out. When I did this I found that the speed of light dropped between 1928 and 1945 by about 20 kilometres per second. It's a huge drop because they're given with errors of any fractions (decimal points of error) and yet all over the world it dropped, and they were all getting values very similar to each other with tiny errors. Then in 1948 it went up again and then people started getting very similar values again.
I was very intrigued by this and I couldn't make sense of it so I went to see the head of metrology at the National Physical Laboratory in Teddington. Metrology is the science in which people measure constants.
And I asked him about this I said, "What do you make of this drop in the speed of light between 1928 and 1945?"
And he said, "Oh dear." He said, "You've uncovered the most embarrassing episode in the history of our science."
So I said, "Well, could the speed of light have actually dropped? And that would have amazing implications if so."
He said, "No, no of course it couldn't have actually dropped. It's a constant."
[So] "Oh, well then how do you explain the fact everyone was finding it going much slower during that period? Is it because they were fudging their results to get what they thought other people should be getting, and the whole thing was just produced in the minds of physicists?"
"We don't like to use the word fudge."
I say, "Well, what do you prefer?"
He said, "Well, we prefer to call it intellectual phase-locking."
So I said, "Well, if it was going on then, how can be so sure it's not going on today, and that the present values are produced by intellectual phase-locking?"
And he said, "Oh we know that's not the case."
I said, "How do we know?"
He said, "Well, we've solved the problem."
He said, "Well, we fixed the speed of light by definition in 1972."
So I said, "But it might still change."
He said, "Yes but we'd never know it, because we defined the meter in terms of the speed of light, so the unit's had change with it." So he looked very pleased about that, they'd fixed that problem.
But I said, "Well then what about big G? (the gravitational constant known in the trade as big G, is written with a capital G) Newton's universal gravitational constant that's varied by more than 1.3 percent in recent years. And it seems to vary from place to place and from time to time."
And he said, "Oh well those are just errors, and unfortunately there are quite big errors with big G."
So I said, "Well what if it's really changing? I mean, perhaps it is really changing."
And then I looked at how they do it. What happens as they measure it in different labs, they get different values on different days and then they average them. And then other labs around the world do the same, and they come out usually with a rather different average. And then the International Committee on metrology meets every ten years or so and averages the ones from labs run, well, to come up with the value of big G.
But what if G were actually fluctuating? What if it changed? There's already evidence, actually, that it changes throughout the day, and throughout the year. What if the earth, as it moves through the galactic environment, went through patches of dark matter or other environmental factors that could alter it? Maybe they all change together. What if these errors are going up together and down together?
For more than 10 years, I've been trying to persuade metrologists to look at the raw data. In fact, I'm now trying to persuade them to put it online, on the internet, with the dates and the actual measurements, and see if they're correlated - to see if they're all up at one time all down at another. If so, they might be fluctuating together, and that would tell us something very, very interesting.
But no one has done this. They haven't done it because G is a constant. There's no point in looking for changes. I see, here's a very simple example of where a dogmatic assumption actually inhibits inquiry. I myself think that the constants may vary quite considerably, well within narrow limits. But they may all be varying, and I think the day will come when scientific journals, like Nature, have a weekly report on the constants like stock market reports and newspapers. You know, "This week big G was slightly up, the speed on the charge on the electron was down, the speed of light held steady," and so on. So that's one area where I think thinking less dogmatically could open things up.
One of the biggest areas is the nature of the mind. This is the most unsolved problem. Science simply can't deal with the fact we're conscious, and it can't deal with the fact that our thoughts don't seem to be inside our brains. Our experiences don't all seem to be inside our brain. Your image of me now doesn't seem to be inside your brain, yet the official view is there's a little Rupert somewhere inside your head and everything else in this room is inside your head your experience is inside your brain. I'm suggesting, actually, the vision involves an outward projection of images. What you're seeing is in your mind, but not inside your head. Our minds are extended beyond our brains in the simplest act of perception. I think that we project out the images we're seeing and these images touch what we're looking at.
If I look at for you from behind and you don't know I'm there, could I affect you? Could you feel my gaze? There's a great deal of evidence that people can. The sense of being stared at is an extremely common experience, and recent experimental research suggests it's real. Animals seem to have it too. I think it probably evolved in the context of predator-prey relationships. Prey animals that could feel the gaze of a predator would survive better than those that couldn't. This would lead to a whole new way of thinking about ecological relationships, between predators and prey, also about the extent of our minds.
If we look at distant stars I think our minds reach out in a sense to touch those stars and literally extend out over astronomical distances. They're not just inside our heads. Now it may seem astonishing, that this is a topic of debate in the 21st century we know so little about our own minds, that where our images are, is a hot topic of debate with consciousness studies right now.
I don't have time to deal with any more of these dogmas, but every single one of them is questionable. If one questions it, new forms of research, new possibilities open up, and I think as we questioned these dogmas, that have held back science so long, science will undergo re-flowering, a Renaissance. I'm a total believer in the importance of science. I've spent my whole life as a research scientist, my whole career. But I think by moving beyond these dogmas, it can be regenerated once again it and become interesting, and I hope life-affirming. Thank you.
Are we connected to one another and our Earth, or are we separate from everything that we know? The answer to this question has troubled physicists, philosophers, and the like, for millennia.
While contemporary physicists, such as John Wheeler, had no problem accepting our intimate connection with the universe itself, his friend and colleague Albert Einstein did. Before Einstein died, he expressed his deep frustration with the idea that we may in fact in live a world where we are so connected where we can actually influence matter in one place while we are somewhere else. Einstein called his phenomena "spooky action at a distance."
For us to have such a relationship, if it does exist, there must be something, some field, that our thoughts, feelings, emotions, and beliefs move through to connects us to one another.
The idea that is everything is connected by some kind of energy, a field, was actually a very popular idea in the late 1800’s. During this time, a spiritual revolution unfolded, provoking scientists to determine whether or not the universe is connected at some level. Scientists at this time named this field the “ether” field. In our modern time, the term “ether” has since been deemed invalid in the scientific community, and any reference to it is not taken credibly.
The origin of our false assumption
In 1887, two very famous researchers, Michelson and Morley, decided to once and for all settle the argument of whether everything is connected by a field, or if everything is separate.
Their experiment can be likened to going outside, moistening your finger, and in the moment you did so, if you felt no wind against your finger, you conclude that no air exists. This of course is not true, because the air may not be moving at that time and place that you performed the measurement.
Michelson and Morley believed that this field that connects all things, the “ether” field, was a living vibrating pulsating field of energy, which should be in motion, and if that motion could be detected they could then determine whether the field exists.
The researchers designed an experiment using an interferometer. The experiment consisted of shooting a beam of light against one mirror that would split that beam of light into two different mirrors in different places that would reflect those beams of light to a collecting mirror. The experiment was based on the idea that if there was a field was in motion, the two beams of light would not come back to the same place at the same time, and that an interference pattern would be observed. In sum, the scientists were looking for an interference pattern in the beams of light to determine if a field that connects all things exists.
After conducting this experiment in 1887 and 1888, the researchers did not observe an interference pattern and they published their findings, no such field exists, in peer-reviewed scientific journals (Michelson & Morley, 1887). Modern scientists describe that the results of this were poorly interpreted.
Reevaluating Our assumptions
It was the interpretation of the results of the Michelson and Morley experiment that were carried into scientific experiments from 1887 until only recently, carrying the false assumption that there is no field, that everything is separate from everything else, that there is no field of energy that connects what is happening in one place to what is happening somewhere else. This concept is antithetical to that of our ancient ancestors, who began with the idea that everything is connected to everything else. For thousands of years, indigenous people around the world began with assumption that everything is connected and they then devoted that time, of thousands of years, to learn and understand what that connection meant in their lives, to apply in in their lives, to become better people, to build stronger families and communities.
Science, for 300 years, has struggled to determine if this field actually exists. Since 1887, our modern scientific paradigm has been built around the concept that everything is separate. That is until recently…
In 1987, there was an experiment, similar to the Michelson and Morley experiment, conducted under the auspices of the United States Air Force. While the U.S. Air Force had access to better equipment than Michelson and Morley did 100 years earlier, the same principle was used. During this experiment, the Air Force sanctioned experiment determined that there is a field of energy that connects all things (Silvertooth, 1986). Not only did the researchers determine that the field existed, but it existed in the exact same parameters as Michelson and Morley expected it to exist; the equipment that they were using that was not sophisticated enough to prove it.
The results, published in the prestigious journal Nature, in August 1986, almost 100 years later, caused the scientific community to acknowledge that they have been falsely assuming that everything is separated.
To be clear, there is no longer a question of whether a field exists that connects all things. The question that now rises is “What does it mean in our lives?”
This field, no longer called the “ether” field has been given many new names, such as “the field” as Lynne McTaggart names it. It is also known as the “quantum field,” “God,” “source,” “the matrix,” or “the divine matrix.”
The movie The Matrix was based on the idea that suggests there is another world that exists in this field that we simply cannot see, from our perspective, from where we are right now in this time and space (just because we cant see it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist), and that what happens in this field (that we cannot see) actually influences, and in many case drives, the events that we see in our every day lives.
Much of our current science has been based on the false assumption that everything is separate. We now know that is assumption is not true. We know that the field exists and that we are in fact connected to this field. But what does this field do?
The field fulfills three fundamental capacities:
There now is no longer any controversy as to whether or not the field exists, or whether of not we are connected. But how deeply are we connected? What does this field mean for us?
Relatively recently, in 1997, the results of an innovative experiment, that were published worldwide via mainstream peer-reviewed journals, performed by physicist Nicolas Gisin at the University of Geneva in Switzerland, offer a clue to answer these questions.
The Twin-Photon Experiment
Photons are what atoms are made of. Photons are light particles that the stuff of this world is made of, including you and I.
Researchers set out to determine how field is influenced by photons. Using extremely sophisticated scientific equipment, researchers were able to isolate a single photon and split that photon in half, thereby creating twin-photons, two photons with the exact same properties. These photons were placed into a specialized device, in which they were able to shoot the photons, the particles of light, through fiber optic cables in opposite directions from where they began. Each of the fiber optic cables was 7 miles long. Thus, when the photons reached their destination they were a total of 14 miles apart.
The researchers then “tickled”, or influenced, one photon in one place and were able to observe the other photon to see what would happen to the other photon. The researchers observed that when one photon was influenced in one place, the other photon acted like it had the exact same experience as the original photon being influenced, even though the researchers weren’t directly touching it. When one photon was influenced to rotate in a certain direction, the other photon rotated in the exact same direction at the exact same time, down to the nanosecond. When one photon was artificially charged, the other photon would respond exactly as the first at the exact same time, acquiring the same charge. These photons were responding to the same stimuli even though they were not physically connected. This experiment validates the concept of quantum entanglement (Tittel, Brendel, Gisin, Herzog, Zbinden & Gisin, 1998).
Entanglement suggests that once matter is joined physically (those twin-photons used to be one photon) it remains connected energetically. Even when matter is no longer physically touching, it remains energetically linked, regardless of their location in space. This implies once matter is connected, it is always connected.
This experiment, conducted on a small level, reveals to us something very significant on a very large level. Entanglement implies that once physical matter is connected, even when it is separated, even when it is torn apart, regardless of its distance, whether across the room, across nations, across the world, or across the cosmos, that that separate matter is actually still connected.
Why it matters
Let’s go back, way, way back to the very beginning: the Big Bang. The time when there was a primal release of energy and the universe began to expand in the way that it continues today. If we could go back to the instant just before the Big Bang happened and observe the status of the universe; If we took all of the space out of in between all of the atoms in the universe today, remove the space, and compress all physical matter in the universe, we would see it compressed into a solid ball of matter about the size of a single green pea. Just after the instant of the Big Bang, the universe existed as a single extremely dense and hot ball of matter.
At the moment of the big bang, this green pea began to expand very, very quickly, and what was once physically connected in that small space became the physical matter that continues to expand in the universe today. It is this expansion that we can observe today that gives researchers the belief that the big bang occurred.
We can observe that the universe is expanding. If we reverse the trajectory of this expansion, using mathematical models, back in time to a place that is called the singularity. The singularity is the single green pea, the place where everything was once physically connected.
As the results of the experiment suggest, once matter is connected physically, it remains connected energetically. At the instant of the big bang, all matter was connected: all of the matter in my body, all of the matter in your body, all of the matter on this planet, all of the matter from every star in the universe, it all came from this single green pea. If all the matter was once connected, and it is now expanding and separate as it is today, are we still connected energetically?
The results twin-photon experiment suggests the answer is yes. We are all deeply connected. But what does this connection mean? How deep does this connection go? Does this connection beyond the level of photons into our physical world? We are all made of atoms, which are made of photons, the same photons that were used in the experiment at the quantum level.
The twin-photon experiment helps us understand why all matter was originally connected when the universe was formed, some 13.8 billion years ago, to begin with; and why that connection still exists in our world and in our lives today.
The field does more than just connect things through entanglement. The field is not only entangled, it is holographic.
The Holographic principle
In a hologram, each fragment of a something is mirror of that whole something. Every piece, regardless of how big or small, of a hologram mirrors the whole. A hologram is a self-similar pattern at all scales. For example, if we had a two-dimensional holographic image printed on a piece of paper and cut that image into a million pieces, of any shape and size, and we took the smallest of those pieces and observed it under a microscope, in that smallest fragment of that hologram, we would see the entire pattern as if it was seen in the original uncut image; this is the holographic principle.
The holographic principle, combined with the results of the twin-photon experiment, suggests that if we make a change in one place, that change is mirrored throughout the rest of the hologram.
Think of the universe, for example, as a whole. If we were to cut that whole in half, and then cut that half into quarters, and continue this over and over, like the holographic image, until we a infinite amount of pieces. If we made a change in one of those infinitesimally small pieces (just one place) of the universe, on the level that the hologram recognizes, that change would be mirrored throughout the rest of the entire universe.
Putting it all together
In the twin-photon experiment, the photons separated 14 miles in distance from one another acted as if they were having the same experience, in the same instant in time, without being physically disturbed.
The two photons were connected, via entanglement. But for the photons to be mirrored, a conventional scientist would postulate (using linear thinking) that the information of the disturbance traveled, or transmitted, from point A to point B. This linear thinking, assumes, based on current laws of physics, that the disturbance would have to travel across time and space. However, the response time that lapsed between the photon phenomena, where one photon was "tickled" and the other photon 14 miles away mirrored the same experience, was measured using atomic clocks. The researchers observed that there was no time difference, no lag; the experience occurred simultaneously. The nano-instant that one of these photons had the experience, the other one did as well. It is holographic principle that reveals to us what is occurred in this phenomenon. The information did not travel from the first photon to the second - it didn’t need to. In a hologram, the information is already there.
In a hologram, here equals there. The holographic principle suggests that at the energetic level, each of us is able to create tremendous and significant changes in our bodies and in our lives.
From the false assumption, in order for us to create change, we must make that change happen one thing, one task, and one person at a time. With this new assumption in mind, that everything is connected, we do not need to make a change itself happen, we can accomplish positive change in our world and in our lives through demonstrating a personal change in thinning, a shift that is reflected holographically in the field.
As our ancient ancestors, and modern mystics alike, have suggested, as we are able to shift our beliefs and thinking, the world can embrace those changes and mirror them, rather than going to each person, one at a time and make one change after another.
Here is a mechanism that gives us the words to explain the seemingly miraculous experiences that we find in our lives. For example, when our prayers benefit our loved ones whether we are sitting together in the same room or half way around the world. We now know, that we are deeply connected, as the most fundamental level, we are entangled. And with the holographic principle in mind, we are able to love one another and share that love in ways that we only dreamed possible before we understood this principle.
At the instant before the big bang, all mattered was connected. Are we still connected? The evidence suggests, yes, we are in fact connected.
Braden, G. (2018). Confirming Our Connections. [video] Missing Links, S1:Ep5. Available at: http://gaia.com [Accessed 3 Apr. 2019].
Browne, M. (1997). Far Apart, 2 Particles Respond Faster Than Light. [online] Nytimes.com. Available at: https://www.nytimes.com/1997/07/22/science/far-apart-2-particles-respond-faster-than-light.html [Accessed 3 Apr. 2019].
Michelson, A., Morley, E. (1887). "On the Relative Motion of the Earth and the Luminiferous Ether". American Journal of Science. 34 (203): 333–345. https://doi.org/0.2475/ajs.s3-34.203.333.
Silvertooth, E. (1986). Special relativity. Nature, 322(6080), pp.590-590. https://doi.org/10.1038/322590b0
Tittel, W., Brendel, J., Gisin, B., Herzog, T., Zbinden, H. and Gisin, N. (1998). Experimental demonstration of quantum correlations over more than 10 km. Physical Review A, 57(5), pp.3229-3232. https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevA.57.3229
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