I went down to the river yesterday.
You know, "High, Wide, and Handsome."
"Across the Wide Missouri."
You know the one.
I was struck, as I was lying there on the bank, actually under the bank, since it was blowing and I sought a little place for shelter from the wind, I was struck by the fact, suddenly, that there was nothing in the world I would rather be doing than exactly what I am doing.
It couldn't have been planned any better.
One of the things they locked me up in the bin for was my talk about non-accidents.
As I called them.
When you go into class and start talking about noncoincidences in life you make some people very uneasy.
And others, very interested.
If you know what you are talking about.
To deny the accidental, the coincidental, at any given point, is to affirm the existence of some other law, or kind of law, that is unseen to natural science.
Or what we euphemistically call "natural" "science."
I was affirming that there was such law, and I was trying to teach my students about it.
As best I could.
What I have since learned is that nothing that ever happens to you in your life, be it great or very, very, small, is ever accidental, or coincidental.
Nothing is an accident.
Everything is a "noncoincidence."
To coin a word.
And when you learn to read the water in the way that this term signifies, you will begin to be able to read the events in your life and flow with them in exactly the right way--gracefully, happily, buoyantly, and with all the eagerness and anticipation of a raft trip. And you can quit trying to paddle backwards upstream.
Which is exactly what "natural" "science" would have you do.
If you buy it, and the metaphysical implications for human life that "it" has.
As the speculative pipe dream.
That it is.
Rather, if and when you find the daring to go with this fourth-dimensional consciousness, to whatever extent that you understand it (never is more required of you than you already possess in your understanding), you will find a grace under pressure in the waters of your life you never knew was conceivably possible.
If you know that everything that is happening to you in your day is being given to you, and for reasons that are nothing but good, you develop a trust and a faith and a consciousness that can happily glide right along over any set of unhappy circumstances.
0f any kind.
There is no such thing as a "coincidence," of any kind, anywhere.
And knowledge of this fact gives you tremendous power in your life.
Power over every and any circumstance that would try to defeat you.
Nothing can defeat you.
Because it is all there for your benefit, and none of it is something more than you can handle.
None of it.
Most people collapse, or seem to collapse, because they have no knowledge of this.
Or, not enough knowledge, "faith" that this is true.
Who let his eye stray to the little storm that was coming up. And fell in. When he tried to walk on the water.
But if you know, or at least are willing to take a few faltering steps in this direction to see if it is maybe true, you will find the events in your life "breaking" for you in perfectly beautiful, and unimaginably perfectly "coincidental" ways, that you never dreamed possible.
As your reward.
For daring to take the risk.
And walk the few hesitating steps onto the water.
To see what it feels like.
The "Power of Positive Thinking" has a little bit of this in it; but it is not based on a scientific knowledge of laws, that are not human made, but divine: absolute fact.
As I lay there on the bank, I thought of the long period of time I had waited at Whitman, before getting "the word" on where to go next.
After, to all "human" appearances, I had been fired, and my career destroyed.
There was no point in looking for a job; the academic teaching market was in ruins.
Although I could have.
And done what all the other 90,000 people out of jobs were doing--frantically going to conventions, sending out resumes and applications, unsolicited, to hundreds of schools.
Just quietly wait.
To that inner intuition that was so powerful.
My dad was in a rage: "You've got to be looking for work aggressively," he cautioned.
Now is the time to move.
My wife, needless to say, was not pleased.
The way the academic system works at the university level is that they evaluate you for tenure in your sixth year: if you get it, they keep you; if you don't, they give you one more year on the job to look for another position.
I didn't get it.
By one vote.
And then, when I appealed, I didn't get it again, by one vote.
Something was speaking to me.
I listened again during that whole year I was supposed to be looking for work.
For one whole year.
Until the last week of school, long after we had sold our house, and I was still listening.
Regardless of the human picture around me that would argue with everything in its force that I was an irresponsible nut.
A certified irresponsible nut.
One week before the end of school I got a call, actually my wife got a call, asking whether she might want to go teach on a reservation in Montana.
I knew that was it.
That was the move!
And that was all I (we) ever relied on in coming here.
(By this time, three years after the loony bin experience, my dearly beloved wife had come to trust a great deal more the kind of thing I had been talking about.)
So we moved.
On the basis of that one phone call, from the guy who now lives across the street from me, who similarly brought his wife and family here on a peculiar kind of intuition.
And that was how I came to be lying on that bank yesterday.
Doing exactly the number one thing I would most like to have been doing at the age of thirty-five.
I don't know about you, but I have always been a dreamer about mountain men.
What it must have been like as those guys, like Jim Bridger, first came up the Missouri, alone, to hunt and trap and live off, and in, and on the land.
The exquisite, untamed, innocent beauty of the land was unfathomable to me.
And yet, here I was, right in the middle of it.
As close to that kind of nature as you can get, these days.
The cottonwoods are the same.
The river is the same.
The prairie, right here, for the most part is the same.
All around me were trees that had been freshly cut down by Beaver.
Ducks, geese, deer, "prairie chickens" all around.
Hawks, and owls, and eagles of all description.
And the river.
And that was it.
Except for the wind, blowing strongly in the Cottonwoods.
But I was well protected, down close to the water, under a little overhang in the bank.
At peace with my soul, in God knows how long.
And doing that sort of pioneer, mountain man, work that I had always dreamed of doing.
But on the Frontier of Mind.
The New Frontier.
The Real New Frontier.
Let's begin to take a good cold hard honest look at "Science," so-called "natural" science, and see what it's really based on.
I claim that all is Mind.
"Science" claims that all is matter, and matters infinite manifestations, including Mind.
Let's see where we get the support for this idea.
Remember, now, that "science," or what we call "natural science" underlies, overlies, pervades through our whole common sense picture of the Universe, and life in it.
Our life in it.
"Science" goes back to Aristotle, who coined almost all the concepts we use today, as the basis of our ordinary thinking about the world.
Aristotle was one of the great Greek thinkers, whose work Jesus came to overthrow, with his demonstration of "miracles."
Which is a word that comes to us from the Greek meaning "marvels."
Which indeed they are.
To intellectual, rationalistic, empirical thought about the world we live "in."
Whatever it is.
Have you ever looked up in the bright blue sky and wondered whether it was really blue?
When I was a kid.
A little kid.
A dinky little kid who didn't know jack squat about anything, except what his teachers and his parents "taught" him.
Physicists will tell you that the blue coloring is the scattering of "light rays."
That can't get "through" the earth's atmosphere.
Yet, when you pin the physicists down, and ask them whether the "light rays" are "blue," the answer is always, peculiarly, "no."
Well, what then is blue?
Light rays are colorless, odorless, weightless, tasteless, and soundless.
Yet, peculiarly, these "things" are supposed to "compose" the "substance" of our visible world.
Well, how do we know that the theory that tells us about "light rays" is true? Or tenable? Or plausible? Even.
Well, the theory is based on experiments.
"Experiments" are things that are based on observation.
"Observations" are things that constitute proof, because they are things that we can relate to "out there" in the "physical world" in terms of taste, touch, sight, sound, and smell.
The so-called "physical" senses.
When we have theories that "agree" with these so-called "senses," we have what is called "empirical proof."
From which we can "deduce," logically, certain "laws" pertaining to the "nature" of this so-called "physical nature."
Of course, now, these "laws," pertaining to this so-called "nature" are liable to have "counter" instances, which at any time may nullify one of these so-called "laws."
So, they aren't really quite "laws" in the traditional sense, where you don't expect them to be violated.
Instead, they are so-called statistical laws.
That means they can be violated and still be laws.
Or, so-called "laws."
Now, there remains, of course, the additional question about whether the laws pertaining to the statistical laws are themselves real laws, or just statistical laws.
But, we'll leave that for the Philosophers of Science.
Philosophy of Science, by the way, was the specialty of my Department at Washington University.
The Philosophy of Science Journal was edited there, by a guy named Richard Rudner, a very distinguished Philosopher of Science, who was asked to write the definitive (modern) statement about the nature of Social Science by Prentice-Hall, for their comprehensive series of books on Philosophy.
Rudner was a behaviorist.
Like all good Philosophers of Science; since that is where the assumptions and methodology of science inevitably lead you once you buy the initial proposition that man is an animal.
Or, the more initial proposition that there are such things as "animals," that emerged from "plants," that emerged from the ooze, that emerged from the lucky chance happenstance of an inorganic molecule one day "turning into" an "organic" molecule.
Either by a quirk of fate or by the hand of God.
Both assumptions have equally devastating implications for human life, if you think about it.
Behaviorism arose from the depths and despair of human thought out of the "observation" that the "body" was a "useless" theoretical postulate when you really sit down and look at the (theoretical) events going on.
All you really have is behavior.
You have "input" behavior.
And you have "output" behavior.
And, what you have in between, that we used to think of as a person, or a substantive being, that did the responding, and was being stimulated, is itself just a massive (complex) sequence of stimuli and responses.
No substantive "thing" there after all.
Which, of course, is just the same conclusion arrived at in Physics.
Only there they talk about energy.
And how matter really is not a solid thing at all anymore; it is just little points or fields of energy that interact.
When I started school and Physics was taught, they just had one little old nucleus, with maybe three little bits and pieces of subdividable (theoretically) matter within it.
Now, of course, there are over twenty-three, and we are down to something called "quarks."
Which is a name to capture the imagination of science fiction buffs.
(As opposed to nonscience fiction buffs.)
That's a joke.
A little levity thrown in here for those of you that have z'd off.
Well, of course, we have the same basic problem in all aspects of Science, or "natural" science as it is taught today.
It always seems to come around to the perplexing conclusion that its basic subject for investigation--matter--doesn't really exist.
A most anomalous state of affairs for those who have invested their life energy into trying to prove things about it.
Like "Black Holes."
Which is always a favorite.
Now they are trying to figure out whether you can go "in" a black hole and enter a different Universe or time dimension.
But, they haven't figured out, yet, that they have this seemingly endless series of puzzles because they started out from the wrong premises--that matter is real, that life is in matter, that man is an animal, that man has a "mind of his own" that he uses to go around investigating the Universe--and, consequently, they have overlooked, or decided to step over some really obvious puzzles at their front door.
Which they would have us ignore.
As if "philosophical" were a category to be used for dismissing the reality of a claim or an observation.
When, in fact, the greatest minds in the history of man have consistently been "philosophical."
Today, of course, the scientists have all but completely taken over and possessed the professional academic philosophical community.
And completely obliterated any visible sign of intelligent life.
Which is why you hear almost nothing of any conceivable consequence from the philosophical community: because it has been so effectively seduced by its number one enemy--Science itself.
So let's remember the central paradox that science leaves us with, and completely ignores as somehow an "academic," puzzling, "philosophical" question that is really none of their concern.
The mind-body problem.
Science would have us accept and believe that these totally unlike "substances"--mind and body--interrelate, interact, and somehow "stick" together to form what we call a "human being."
On this "theory," this premise, they base their whole methodology and Weltanschauung.
Some "scientist" popped up with an "invention," and said "Hot Dog!"
And we ate it.
The whole thing.
Because we liked the invention.
Because we thought it made us materially more comfortable.
Let me take a couple of steps backward and try to show you some of the things I have learned in my study of Philosophy.
Very early in my career it became clear to me that the central question for academic inquiry was whether or not man was an animal.
If man was an animal, well, everything followed from that premise.
If we accepted it.
But the scientist (and all of the common sense thinking that follows from scientific conceptual schemes) accepts this premise as a conclusion, before any investigation gets underway.
In fact, if you look at it correctly, I think, all of "natural" science can be viewed as an elaborate Weltanschauung for defending this hidden premise (or conclusion) with all of the full-blown conceit of human will.
The hook, for getting us to go along with it, step by step, inch by inch, is the material technology which "science" seems to toss in our way to lure us away from what we are truly here to think about.
As long as "science" can keep us lured off in the weeds, enjoying the thrills and terrors of the toys and nightmares that its preoccupations present us with, it can keep our attention away from the one thing that will destroy it as an enterprise.
Because as soon as one allows, or forces himself to let himself allow his interest to turn in the direction of seeking to understand God, (and you damn near do have to go off into the sticks of Montana to do it), what becomes immediately apparent is not that Science is a threat; but that Science is irrelevant, to the major concerns of Life.
It is wholly, 100% dedicated to third-dimensional views of the sandbox.
And, by way of promoting its very survival, promoting our interest in those views.
By any device it can come up with.
Remember, we are talking about a life and death struggle, for something that most people (superficially) believe is the substantive view of Life.
Right now people are going along with it because they think it is to their advantage.
Because of all the promises and visions for the future that apologists for the view are coming up with.
As well as the material ease that it seems to have given us.
But, when the scientific establishment (and the conceptual scheme that it promotes) is effectively challenged, and it sees the insidious, self-contradictory, empty lies that form the theoretical heart of its promises, it will react the same way that the Roman Empire did to the little pockets of "spirituality" that held out against it.
Until it became the "Holy" Roman Empire.
And the "spirituality," was effectively silenced by the Catholic Church.
Until the Reformation and the Enlightenment cropped up.
And "free" intelligence was found unrestrainable.
The dogmatism of the Scientific Community is now worse than that of the Catholic Church when Galileo came up with his little offerings to and from Intelligence.
At least you can feel its control of the thought and feelings of the people to an extent that makes it impeachable heresy to question the right of Science to rule.
If you doubt this, go to court sometime and see whose hands the final determinations of sanity are put in.
In the form of doctors.
This is a matter of law.
It is on the books, as statute, that physicians make the final determinations as to whether the guy is clearheaded, or crackers.
I suppose the most important "key" I found in my investigation of society, looked at through the kaleidoscope of scientific liberal humanism, which is what is taught in our schools these days, is something that took around ten years to surface and become the "footing" or "foundation" for my next step. The leap of faith.
The key was this: I found no justification whatsoever, from within the theoretical or practical domain of scientific liberal humanism, for believing in morals.
Morality is an anomaly, a real anachronism, if you will, to the scientific view of reality.
I taught Ethics for seven years.
That's all I really taught.
It was the only thing that really caught and kept my attention, that I could legitimately teach.
Each year I would give a paper, a take-home final, at the end of my Ethics course, that had just one question, based on our study of Mill, Sartre, Nietzsche, and Freud: Why Should I Be Moral?
I never, ever, once got a satisfactory answer to that question.
That caught my attention.
In the academic world today there is a great search, as there is in the more "practical" culture at large, for genuine, meaningful values.
This is the underlying question that prompted the take-home final question to my students.
It is the core question of a course in upper level Value Theory in Philosophy.
In Philosophy the question takes this form: How can I extract valid statements of ethical or moral or eudaemonistic value from statements about matters of fact only?
In other words, how can one derive judgments of value from statements of fact?
Judgments of value don't follow from statements of fact.
They are different kinds of beast.
And, logically, you can't conclude things in your conclusion of your argument that aren't somewhere, somehow already stated, or implied, or argued for in the premises of your argument.
And values don't follow from facts.
They simply don't.
We even have a name for this dilemma in Philosophy; it is called "The Naturalistic Fallacy."
There is no more important subject under discussion today in professional academic philosophy.
This has been true since the explosion of science just after the turn of the century.
The problem, of course, is that there is no answer to the question of morality and value, when viewed from within the perspective of scientific liberal humanism.
Which, viewed from a Mind-perspective is just the point, because it forces us to look and move up and out of it.
Which is what is happening today.
In all sorts of kinky, searching, tentative ways.
Like Far Eastern Philosophy.
The only justification of morality, or ethics, which seemingly give us rules that go right straight in the face of self-interest (the only shared value in scientific humanism), is the pull, the desire, the yearning for the truth, which happens to be spiritual.
Which we know in our bones.
And hate like hell to yield to.
Because of what we're afraid we're going to lose.
Until we discover that we don't lose anything; that we gain everything we wanted in the beginning.
And that the only thing being left behind are the fetters that would have kept us from seeing the glorious spiritual Truth that is God!
Needless to say I didn't (couldn't) last very long in an academic environment.
I have said that both the mind-body problem (the problem of consciousness) and the crisis in moral values (how you can validly derive an "ought" kind of statement from an "is" kind of statement) are each the most important intellectual problems we face today.
At least I have implied that.
Well, at least they are the most important problems in Philosophy.
I hope to show you how they are both the derivative of the same problem; and both have arisen from our having taken the claims of Science seriously.
The major intellectual effort on my part, my only creative contribution to the world of intellectual life, has been this point, substantively developed in my doctoral dissertation: what we call "facts" are the result of the values we have chosen in life; and what we call "values" are chosen as a result of the "facts" that we perceive to be the case.
Facts are derived from values.
Values are derived from facts.
This point is basic to what I understand Pragmatism to be as the leading influential school of Philosophy in the History of American Thought.
Although the point is not usually put this bluntly.
It is the most interesting part of the study of Phenomenology, or Consciousness, as far as I am concerned.
And Existentialism, or the study of human existence through the event of Consciousness.
But what I am interested in showing you is how Science has left us with the legacy of both the crisis in values and the anomaly of consciousness.
As our reward.
For buying into its hypnotic seduction about the "virtues" of "material" "luxury."
In a word, Science created for us Dualism.
The sense of ourselves as something apart.
Separated from our Maker.
You can see this reflected all the way back to earliest recorded man.
It is recorded in the second chapter of Genesis, where fiction would have it that God started Creation all over again, after He finished it in the first chapter of Genesis; and He decided to do it again beginning with the second chapter.
Where the "mist" "rose up."
And God fashioned a "man" from the "dust."
And it was this man who ran off with Eve and started reading Hustler magazine.
This is the dream.
This is the myth.
That there is such a man.
And that he does do such "sinful" and "wicked" things.
This is all a dream, which we are experiencing, or waking up from, as the reality, recorded in the First Chapter of Genesis is dawning to our consciousness.
Step by step.
Bit by bit.
As much as we can bear at a time.
What looks like mad sensual lust, lust for sex, lust for power, money, status, possessions, and all the rest of the material American Dream, is really just all of this crap being brought to the surface for cleaning up.
That's all this is.
A cleanup operation.
And my role, the dream I have had since early childhood has come true: I am a Garbage Man.
Identifying, picking up, and taking out other people's garbage.
In one of those really fancy, electrodynamic, hydraulic, and multifaceted Garbage Trucks.
That were so impressive, way back then.
In truth, the erroneous conditions of thought, like false beliefs about the ultimate nature of reality, are brought to the surface of our experience in what we call "human life," and are shown for what they are: self-destructive lies about the nature of God and Man.
And this experience is given to us, as a constant demonstration, of what is true and what is false concerning the nature of that relationship.
Any false belief becomes a hypnotic dream when you take it in, or seem to take it in, or try to take it in and try it on.
You can't really.
If what Jesus said about the identity of man as the Son of God is true.
You couldn't possibly take it in, really.
But, for as long as you want to try it on and play with it, until your enamor with it is thoroughly exhausted, "burned up," if you like, you are welcome to pretend with it.
But, what has the belief in "Science" and all the "material" laws it expounds as "real," got to do with Consciousness, Values, and Dualism?
Just this: the main occupation of Science, and the Scientist, is to keep our thought fascinated by the "world" of "matter."
As long as he can do this he can keep our thought off of the ever so much more difficult, and taxing, and exhausting, and self-denying, and self-immolating, and self-renunciating subject of Spirit.
You see the human self is a very heavy critter to pack around.
And, as long as the scientist can keep your attention away from the fact that this is the source of your burdens, i.e., packing the "human" sense of "self" around in your thought, he can keep your thought away from Spirit.
Which will spell the end of his enterprise. Of Course.
So he will keep you, and his representatives throughout the "material" culture, will keep you as fascinated with matter as they "humanly" can, either by seducing you with its delights, or, equally fascinating for most, frightening and sickening you with its horrors.
Anything to keep your attention on matter.
Because, then you have your attention on them!
And, that is the end, the goal, the utter preoccupation of the human sense of self: Itself.
This so-called "sense" of "self," that "arose" from a belief of "life" in matter....biological, or "organic" "life."
The raison detre of so-called "medical" "science."
Perpetuating this dream.
Its sole reason for being.
The so-called "healing" profession.
What a perfect place for the greatest lie to be practiced, taught, and spread.
The medical profession.
Thank you doctor.
For your splendid bedside manner.
The dualism becomes complete with medical science.
Where else is it taught, and practiced, with such fierce and tough-minded dedication that matter is the sole determinant in the fate of man's nature and well-being?
The medical "profession" is just that--a "profession" where it professes something to be the case.
And we, being the bunch of turkeys we are, will gobble and follow anything that looks like it might work.
And so we have allowed ourselves to go down the trail of tears, watching our friends and relatives, and eventually ourselves, submit to the surgeon's seductive scalpel.
All of which is done, of course, as the "healing" work of God.
As if God would ever, ever, ever sentence man, His Beloved Son, to the fate and the world view of "nature" and man's "place" in it peddled by "doctors."
Man's estrangement, or his believed, hypnotically induced estrangement, is here complete.
God will sit by and relax and watch this little girl scream and beg and cry and writhe and plead and pray and wait and suffer.
O.K., if that's what you want to believe, you can go and live it out.
One thing you should notice about values: they are what is not the case.
That is, values are held, in consciousness, because they identify what is not yet a reality in human experience.
You don't hold something as a value if it is already the case. A fact of human experience.
Values are the sort of thing that isn't yet the case; that ought to become the case; and that you try to make the case.
They are not yet in the realm of being; but you hold them in mind with an eye toward bringing them into being.
A value is a value precisely because it is not (yet) a reality.
When it becomes a reality, we stop thinking of it as a "value," and it becomes a "fact" of our experience.
Let me see if I can get a little more obscure for you.....
Consciousness is the event that does all of this.
Consciousness is what does the sifting in our experience, and makes the judgments (however subliminally and unnoticed this may occur) about which (projected) states of affairs are going to be values (sought after realities) and which are going to be discarded to the weightless realm of possibilities, that are never realized.
Science would destroy this activity, the heart of the human quest for Truth and Love, by denying its possibility as an ontological proposition.
That is, Science would deny, because of its set of beliefs about the nature of human inquiry, that this activity is possible.
Science would state, does state, in all kinds of hiddenly persuasive forms and media, that man (Mind) is the offspring of matter.
That consciousness is an epiphenomenon derivative from and ultimately controlled by matter.
And the "laws" of matter.
Instead of the other way around.
But "matter," even the very concept or idea of this peculiar "stuff," is absolutely a mental event.
We have enormous, vast, conceptual schemes, like the elaborate divisional and explanational scheme in what we call "Biology" to mentally classify and get a hold on this "phenomenon" that we seem to be presented with--the material world.
Yet, I maintain, if you think about it, even the "event," the material world as it presents itself to us, is a mental event.
Everything that presents itself to us is a mental event.
An aspect of our consciousness.
This has been called "the egocentric predicament" in Philosophy.
Yet it is true.
Call it what you will.
It is the bedrock observation of the school of Philosophy called "Idealism," where everything is an aspect of "Mind."
Something in us recoils.
It says, wait a minute, there has to be something "out there" causing this "idea," "in here," to be a part of my consciousness.
This is not true.
It is the most serious error in made in epistemology and metaphysics.
It is the chief error promoted by and supported by Science.
Which has a very great stake in promoting the "existence" of something "out there," "I know not what," as John Locke used to say, called the basis or "substratum" for matter.
"Substance" for Aristotle.
Something, (a "noumenal" world for Kant), upon which everything else depends; but which itself depends upon nothing.
Matter, says Science.
Form and matter, say Thomas Aquinas and Aristotle.
Just matter, thank you, says Science.
We don't need "Form" anymore; this is an offshoot of Plato's thought, on Ideas.
We shall call it "soft" thinking as opposed to "hard" thinking.
Science has it all reversed. Because no matter where you start, it is always thinking.
No matter what.
And "tasting," and "touching," and "knowing," and "hurting," or "laughing," and "being pleased," or "happy."
It is all mental.
The whole shebang.
None of it is matter.
And Science would reverse it completely, and say that it is all matter, that consciousness and values are all the peculiar, mysterious, epiphenomenal offspring of "matter."
Consciousness is a "mutation," if you will, of "organic life," to use an expression that makes sense only within the theoretical superstructure of classificational Biology.
What is this "Life?"
Well, something you can't see feel taste touch or smell; but which gives rise to all these sensations and itself (mysteriously) arises from "matter."
Well, what is "matter?"
Well, matter is similarly something you cannot see feel taste touch or smell; but, in principle, it is the theoretical "base," or "substratum," or "energy," or "space-time slice," "behind" or "underneath" these "phenomenal" appearances we see with our eyes, hear with our ears, taste with our tongues, touch with our skin, and smell with our noses.
But all of these "functions" of the so-called "body" are "mental" in nature.
Well, they only seem to be "only" or "merely" mental, because you can't directly experience matter, or the material (atomic) structure of "substances" in any other way.
Science would destroy the simple, elementary fact that we create our own experience.
In every way.
Through, or as consciousness.
Consciousness is all there is.
One Big Consciousness, in the end, of which we are "reflections," or "understandings," which is really Consciousness Understanding Itself.
But, that's too big a gulp. Right now.
Right now, it is sufficient to notice that not only is Science full of incoherent contradictions at the bedrock foundational understanding of itself, it also, if accepted, would destroy the most precious things in "human" life.
The kind of things we would die for.
Do you think that real scientists, like Galileo and Einstein, would give their lives for their two-bit theories?
They would, as we all would, eventually give their lives for their right to express their views.
Their love of man.
Their love of God.
Their love of morality, justice, and freedom.
These things form the heart, the fiber and soul, of what's valuable and precious in human life.
These things are worth living for.
And dying for.
But, what does Science have to say about them?
What does Science have to say about Love?
Well, if you ask an "anthropologist" or a "sociologist" you might get some talk about "territoriality" or "mating instincts."
If you ask a "Freudian," you will get some talk about frustrated sexual desires.
If you ask a "biologist," you will get talk about "hormones."
What about freedom, justice, mercy, the search for truth, the search for God, the awesome struggle to be moral in the face of such overwhelming energy to the contrary?
The domain of values, peculiarly and appropriately enough, Science has very little to say about.
In fact, as any superficial scanning of scientific and "fringe scientific" literature will reveal, the fact that Science has almost nothing to say about values is a perplexing, peculiar paradox for even scientists themselves.
They are, after all, "human" just like the rest of us; and have the same divine inclinations that any human being has, no matter how repressed and involuntarily convoluted their libido may be.
The reason that Scientists have nothing whatsoever to say about values (not even so-called "material" values, like whether a Ford is better than a Chevy) is because Science is 100% devoted to obliterating and denying the existential fact of existence that makes values possible: namely that Consciousness precedes the activity of making, creating, choosing, or "coming up with" values.
It is "first."
First you have Consciousness on the scene; and then you have "values."
The existential fact is, that we, at any given point in time, are first of all conscious, and then we fix, and choose, and select, and "come up with" "values."
We are not gripped, or predetermined in any manner as we do this.
Science would have us be the helpless victims of matter in our determinations as to what is valuable.
But, only because we have selected, or chosen, or "agreed to try on" the values we now have, is Science, or the Scientific understanding of the world, the way it is today.
In other words, the Scientific conceptual scheme, huge and vast and awesome though it is (and it is no more huge and vast and awesome than the Roman legions must have seemed to the early Christians), it is the way it is because of prior values that we have selected to take in.
And make our own.
For the time being.
If I say to you that Pluto is a planet instead of a moon of Neptune's, that is because we have both accepted a "scientific" theory of the "Solar System" that would make Pluto a hell of a lot more "deviant" as a moon of Neptune's than as a planet that is too elliptical in its orbit around the sun.
If I say to you that Marine Iguanas are lizards that swim too much, you agree, sensing that it would put too much tension, all "things" considered, on our theoretical conceptual scheme to add another conceptual "category" (species of being) somewhere between Reptiles and Amphibians just to handle the case of these "weird" creatures that "swim too much" for Reptiles, and "breathe too much" for Amphibians.
The indisputable point here is that the most precious things in life come to us from Consciousness, and these things are values.
There isn't any place "out there" for values to come from.
The ultimate value judgments that we are making today guide, they literally form the nature of our experience.