Eternity III

We all each go through every day not knowing what it will bring. This is because we are each finite individuals with limited means of perception, unable to know what we can’t perceive with our five senses. Obviously, we have various means of technology that allow us to see the incredibly small or measure the most minute or grand of quantities. But we still cannot see within the minds of another individual, save perhaps CT scans and brain probes. Nor can we see into the future.

Not knowing is the supreme problem of our finite consciousnesses. Knowing all would be the supreme problem of an infinite consciousness.

Imagine creating a universe within your mind that is as real as all that you are perceiving now. How would you make it? Would you have all that you wanted – love, health, and wealth? You’ve probably had these such of dreams while sleeping.

What seems to be days (or even longer stretches of time) can pass in dreams. Its as if our brains are running faster than reality, creating their own bubble universes off of our waking one.

Imagine your brain were even more powerful than it currently is and could make those dreams reality. Days, weeks, months, years, and eons could pass by, and you’d have the power to fulfill all your wishes. You would have everything to the point of wanting nothing. They would cancel each other out, and a state that could be described as boredom might arise.

Ultimately, not knowing is the supreme problem of consciousness, but its also the primarily solution. If we knew exactly what were to happen in every way, having all power and ability to receive everything that we wanted, we would grow bored. Perhaps, if we had the ability to attain anything we wanted, we would divide ourselves into separate consciousnesses to deal with an eternal existence of knowing everything.

This is what I believe is the meaning of life. We are all one Consciousness, one Being (known to some as God) that are beyond any sort of duality in the ideal ultimate ‘Oneness’ that is beyond. Everything that we see is one with us and a part of the dream. It all began with the ‘Big Bang’ – the primordial, eternal Oneness ‘booting up’ an entire universal program in order to spend eternity ‘productively’.

This eternal, primordial oneness is ‘being and becoming’ – its cyclical with both beginning and end existing within every moment, in a timeless eternal present.

We tap into it when we see patterns, the same pattern states within every sentence or action. We perceive it when we find truth – not the entire truth, but small sections of it – within some sort of communication between two consciousnesses.

Children are perhaps closer to that primordial Oneness, in the sense that they lack concepts in language that divide their selves from the rest of existence. Children obviously are extremely curious, and as they develop, they acquire more and more symbols and connotations associated with things.

Essentially, a young human develops their ego by learning symbols and connotations associated with their perceptions that allow it to become a singular self. Theoretically, this singular self will succeed in life, passing on its genetic and cultural legacy. But the threat of loss and death is what drives human consciousness to find its oneness with reality.

With death, this arrangement of stardust animated by sunlight ceases to run, and the consciousness returns back to the oneness of dissipated molecules and simpler energetic processes.

Revelation

Sometime during July or August 2015, I had an intense philosophical realization (or spiritual revelation) that will probably forever follow my thoughts. It was almost visionary in its intensity, and hopefully I’ll be able to accurately portray it. I am no physicist nor mathmagician, neither am I a ‘New Ager’ (anymore).

It began by asking the question, “If a person does wrong, is something faulty with their ‘machinery’ or their ‘software’?” A persons ‘machinery’ being their physical, biological, chemical processes; the DNA that creates these processes, the actual ‘stuff’ they’re made out of. A persons ‘software’ is their psychological makeup, their personality, or their thought processes. I understand this is a dualistic view of what constitutes a person – in reality the two effect each other greatly – but the question I was asking was whether or not a person has complete control over their actions or thoughts.

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My friend and I started out talking about the ‘Big Bang’ – what we observed in our minds eye to be the primal oneness that the multitudinous universe sprung out of. We asked, if we were to entirely destroy this universe and restart it, would it be the same universe playing itself out again? (I need to learn more about quantum mechanics, because that would go into randomness.)

We posited to ourselves, ‘What if everything consisted of one being split into two?’ – like the branches of some great tree. Everything being a binary of decisions in a matrix of binary decisions, 1’s and 0’s being spread out throughout the cosmos.

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Light and dark, up and down, left and right – everything consisting of dualities, and every single atom being the end result of a continuous chain of dualities – 1’s and 0’s.

We then asked ourselves ‘What is Time?’ Ultimately, its a measurement of change. A timeless universe would be a universe in stasis. One lacking in this division of dualities, going from one to two, with each splitting off from the other. We believe a timeless universe would be one that existed before the ‘Big Bang’.

What then is change without something perceiving that change? It is changeless. Timeless.

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So I posit my theory that consciousness ultimately is change, ultimately is time – and thus is everything – just in different levels.

My theory is that a dot is conscious of itself, and what a dot consists of. A line is conscious of itself, and the dots that make it up. A sphere is conscious of the lines that make up that sphere, and the dots below it. However, this ‘consciousness’ does not consist of words – it may not even consist of feelings. It might consist of mere math.

As that sphere becomes more complex, it divides itself off. It becomes more varied chemicals/elements/etc, further increasing in complexity where the conditions are right. It changes. Then it eventually becomes ‘life’ – what we consider biological – which may have ‘feelings’ – since there’s an increasing number of sensory organs.

Then with increasing complexity of interacting changes (minor consciousnesses) the biological consciousnesses further increases its sentience. I would argue that sentience is changes perceiving changes that are perceiving changes, down increasingly to the level of specks of existence.

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Now, if our level of consciousness is time – ‘the fourth dimension’ – who is to say that dimensions above us are consciousnesses (changes) that perceive the change of our own consciousnesses?

This is where I argue that the supreme consciousness is a One that can perceive the change of change.

In my next post I will describe what comes out of this.

Mortality

As of the last post, I’ve had plenty of existential wanderings within my philosophy and life. But it makes sense, because 2015 was the year where I finally began to face my mortality.

The initial spark for it all came in April, with the death of an old friend from high-school. Although he was ridiculed in school for his looks, his introverted personality, and his passion for professional wrestling, he never let that dull the brightness he saw in everyone he met. He was practically impoverished, yet would give his meager possessions to anyone in need – even if that person was undeserving.

He pursued his dream of being an amateur professional wrestler, attracting a large following of fans who saw the kindness he had within him. While I was looking on the face of my young, dead friend, I realized that I had been treading water for far too long. I did not like my life – I felt alone, unloved, underpaid and overworked. Here was a man who was underpaid and overworked, but loved more than anything.

So I started spiritual introspection, re-reading the New Testament of the Bible. I quit my job, and went back to work at Starbucks. I applied to take the GRE, and attend grad school down in Tennessee living at some family property in Knoxville. I was hoping that I’d finally be able to find better work and more importantly, love.

But of course, since not all things are expected, it’s unwise to expect everything.

Artifices of the Post-Carbon Dark Age : Transportation

A Survey of Technologies for Use in the ‘Long Emergency’

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‘Mad Max meets Antiques Roadshow’

Fossil fuels permeate our lives. They heat and light our homes, and they power our tools and appliances. They allow us to transport ourselves and our goods from place to place, and they fuel the factories and farms that allow us to live as comfortably as possible. Because they are directly involved in nearly every facet of our modern way of life, without fossil fuels our reliance on such advanced technology would be difficult, if not impossible.

However difficult it is to imagine a world without fossil fuels, we must start to contemplate it. The problem of peak oil – a fact ignored and downplayed by the mainstream ‘powers that be’ – is a reality whose effects will be increasingly felt over the next few decades. No matter what the item is, unless it was made by hand from local materials, its creation and transport was made possible by the use of petroleum. Because its supply is decreasing, the demand for it is rising, and the cost of its extraction in unconventional forms is expensive in both energy and financing, the price of oil will continue to rise over the coming years, sending shock-waves throughout our economy and way of life.

Because the reality of this problem is ignored by the mainstream (and at least openly by the elites) of American society, it is almost a fact that it is really too late to do anything major in regards to a massive overhaul in our technology or infrastructure. Bio-fuels, nuclear energy, and massive renewable energy projects are only techno-fixes whose usefulness is still tied into the price of oil. This will mean peoples lives will become slower, their worlds smaller, and they will have to learn to live without energy-intensive technologies. Food production will again be the center of life for most people. Those in the developed world will come to live as how the third world does today, and as how their ancestors lived only a few generations ago. What will take root is a ‘World Made by Hand’.

With a shrinking globe, we will see the localization of agriculture and industry once again. We may witness the decline of prodigious governments and the rise of localized ones. We may have to bear the tyranny of increasingly despotic states, or the rise of new factions and identities in regards to religion, ethnicity, or locality. What we may experience is the end of the Pax-Americana and a dawn of a new Dark Age – but this Age mustn’t be too Dark if we can help it.

Lying within previous eras are various technologies that don’t require the use of fossil fuels. Instead of ancient sunlight, they harness the powers of gravity as well as contemporary solar energy in the form of glucose and the movement of winds. These technologies will involve the use and repurposing of various technologies that have existed into modern times, as well as the construction of all new technologies based on pre-Industrial methods. These technologies will be absolutely necessary for higher than subsistence level living and the continuation of anything we could call civilization.

Human Energy

 Human energy is the simplest form of energy that we can harness. It converts chemical energy in the form of food into the physical energy we need to perform work. This physical energy can be transformed through the use of machines to perform tasks too complex or difficult for human hands. Because of its simplicity as well as its unlimited potential, human powered technology will most likely comprise the bulk of technological innovation in the coming decades of economic and political decentralization.

Transportation – The simplest means of transportation involve human energy use, and several technologies could be used in a post-carbon world. These would likely be widely used before the commonplace ownership of draft animals, though they would be used throughout the ages to follow.

  • Bicycles and their derivatives (such as unicycles, penny-farthings, etc) – Short and long distance transportation of either persons or light freight could be transported on the bicycles themselves, as well as on carts pulled by these machines. They would best be used on the asphalt roads and streets that will eventually be rendered unrepairable by current methods. An industry of bike mechanics and repairers will probably be widespread within the coming years.
  • Rickshaws- These two-wheeled passenger carrying carts known specifically as being popular in East Asia may make an appearance in a post-carbon future. The basic form of it is pulled by a walking human, though bicycle pulled rickshaws exist in some countries. This may replace the taxi or provide for local transportation within towns and communities for those who can’t afford draft livestock.
  • Wheel-barrows – This basic garden and construction implement will perhaps make a more widespread use as a transportation device for short distances, though other technologies such as the grocery cart may have a more wider use for such purposes in the post-carbon future.

Chinese Wheel-barrow – A form of wheel-barrow that existed in China used a single wheel in the bottom and a sail jutting out on top that assists the user, allowing the user to carry three to six times more weight. The design came about in China when the governments road-building infrastructure broke down, and with our society facing similar predicaments, this design could possibly be re-used in the post-carbon upper Susquehanna bio-region.

  • Travois – A travois is a simple wheel-less frame structure used by Native American cultures in previous eras to drag loads over land. Its construction consists of two poles lashed together in the shape of an isosceles triangle, with some sort of netting or platform strung between the two poles. This allows for more weight to be carried than a person could carry on their back. Travois are either dragged by humans, dogs, or horses, and would best be used in roadless areas such as forests or grassland where obstructions such as brush may cause problems for wheels.
  • Canoes, Boats, and other Paddle powered Watercraft – The variety of watercraft powered by hand is truly astounding, and would definitely provide efficient transportation on rivers such as the Chenango or Susquehanna to move people and freight. The commercial adaptation of currently used recreation watercraft – such as fishing boats and canoes – may provide initial means of transportation in the early years of the post-carbon Dark Age. Construction of new versions based on indigenous or pre-Industrial designs would perhaps become the main form of watercraft as society adapts to the new limitations placed on it. With the end of the Fossil Fuel era, transportation along waterways would return to being the main means of long distance trade in the post-carbon future.
  •  Grocery Carts – Because of their prolific abundance, their widespread availability and their basic design, grocery carts may become a staple of human transportation in the near post-carbon future. They would perhaps be of low cost – either being sold by those who have acquired access or stolen by looters and scavengers in the suburban wastelands. Their current manner of use by the poor in inner cities may serve as a model for future use by the general population.