Yury I. Kulakov Novosobirsk State University, Novosobirsk, Russia firstname.lastname@example.org
ABSTRACT: At the dawn of the twenty-first century, many now realize that the opposition of science and religion has been exhausted. Today, unification of the two is imperative. The first step in this direction is recognizing that science is not the only source of knowledge; experience, spiritual discernment and spiritual experience constitute the unified process of cognizing the world.
Pamācošs raksts, kurš rāda, kā izveidojas mūsdienu māņticība. Nav tādas ‘World of higher reality’: cilvēku atklātie un noformulētie dabas likumi neeksistē kaut kādā ‘augstākā realitātē’, tie ir cilvēku izdomājumi, formulējumi, kurus viņi lieto, lai varētu savā starpā saprasties.
Līdzīgs ir senais mīts par ‘dzelžiem’ jeb materiālo sistēmu, un ‘programmu’ jeb ‘dvēseli’, kas eksistē kaut kur citur. Cilvēki vienkārši nezina un nesaprot, kas ir informācija fizikālā sistēmā.
Šajā rakstā redzam arī populāro mītu par ‘bezjūtīgo, racionālo, bezdvēseles’ zinātnisko pieeju:
“Rational thinking required only exact description and measurement. Science lost its soul. Science indeed became a productive power, but it ceased the quest for Truth. Joyless rationalism, trying to formalize everything, converting it into the dead language of algorithms, made the Truth seem rather unattractive.”
I. About the Unified Language in which the Laws of Nature are Written
It began in Moscow more than forty years ago. At that time I had the chance to be the graduate student of the distinguished physicist, Nobel Prize laureate, and wonderful man, Igor Evgenievich Tamm. (1) In those days theoretical physics experienced a state of deep depression. After the success of quantum electrodynamics had astonished the imagination, further advancement was hindered by the lack of fundamentally new physical ideas.
With this Igor Evgenievich was repeatedly saying to me that, by inventing different models of interactions, we impose our own “human” language on nature. But nature does not understand us, and dialogue does not come about. That is why, our primary task is to learn to “listen” to nature in order to understand its “language.” But where is this language? In what it is encapsulated? It is in laws. It is in the laws of Newton, in the equations of Maxwell, in Euclidean geometry, in the laws of quantum mechanics. All these laws are “written” in some unified language.
Thus at the end of 1960 there was set up a completely unusual task: to find the unified universal language in which all fundamental physical laws are written, and then, leaning on this, to review and to reassess the basis of all physics.
Historically, the different branches of physics, which sprang up from experience (from the “bottom”)-such as mechanics, thermodynamics, electrodynamics, the theory of relativity, quantum mechanics-each kept the semi-empirical language distinctive of each branch. But if we rise up to a sufficiently high level of abstraction and look from “above” upon the well-known branches of physics, then numerous details, important when solving this or that concrete task, gradually disappear, and in place of them, new fundamental physical laws are revealed which are written in a new unified language. In front of us there is opening up a new physics with new goals, new tasks, and new mathematical apparatus.
As it was clarified later, the essence of any fundamental physical law lies in the objective existence of abstract physical structures-special kind of relationships which the ideal “doubles” (the prototypes of the objects of material reality) possess. In contrast to the well-known cause and effect connections, these relationships have a completely different nature, and are described in that one unified universal language which Tamm told me about before, and express in the most adequate way the idea of wholeness and unity of the special World of higher reality, whose shadow is the material world which we see.
II. The Traditional Science and the Problem of True Knowledge
The word “science” in its contemporary interpretation signifies the form of knowledge which manages without the assumption of the existence of God as a mystical, otherworldly, incomprehensible Origin.
From the point of view of traditional science, the Universe presents itself as a secluded, self-organizing, and self-regulating system in which all processes taking place have a totally algorithmic character, flowing “by themselves” without any external interference, and describable by dynamic and static laws. In other words, the Universe is a world which is entirely determined by dynamic and static laws and is fundamentally deprived of anything external in relation to itself; it is a world of which we are also the particles, the world which we in principle can cognize. This world creates itself by virtue of some yet indistinct laws, and no external being interferes with it nor watches over it either compassionately or indifferently. And the man, being the “organ of self-cognition of the world”, by virtue of only one thing-that he is a particle of this world, realizes his role as creator and sets before himself the goal of reconstructing and perfecting the world. (2)
Traditional science considers as its primary task of cognition the discovery of the laws which rule the Universe. The final goal of the historical process is for man to conquer nature by unravelling its laws.
Such is the main “article of faith” of traditional science.
But exactly from the moment that this point of view on science was proclaimed, all the “metaphysical” questions about existence and essence, about causes, origins, purpose, and meaning, which had excited people for thousands of years, gradually began to recede into the background.
Rational thinking required only exact description and measurement. Science lost its soul. Science indeed became a productive power, but it ceased the quest for Truth. Joyless rationalism, trying to formalize everything, converting it into the dead language of algorithms, made the Truth seem rather unattractive.
With this, the overwhelming majority of scientists have no doubt about the possibility of unlimited cognition of the Universe. Naively, at the initiative of Lenin, they think that the process of cognition is similar to tally row, in which it is possible, without any damage to the Truth, to cast off the part which consists of an infinite number of its members.
The truly grandiose discoveries in the area of physics, cosmology, and biology, of which the XX century appeared to be so abundant, created “the scientific picture of the world,” in which we will not find the answer to the main questions about the appearance of life, about the vast variety and incomprehensible expediency of the living world, and in which there was not found a place for man with his moral aspirations and quests.
Now, at the dawn of the XXI century, many come to realize that the time and resources of the opposition from Science and Religion are exhausted. Today their unification comes forward as a rigid requirement and the first step on this way is to recognize the fact that science is not the only source of our knowledge of the World, and that experienced knowledge, spiritual discernment, and spiritual experience compose the unified process of cognizing the World.
The time has come to admit the existence of a more complete form of knowledge-the True knowledge, in the foundation of which lies the assumption of universal Unity and harmony of all Existence. This form of cognition accepts all the informative achievements of contemporary science, but it transfers them from the increasingly shaky materialistic foundation onto a new foundation which is more universal and abstract and, for that reason, less objective. The true knowledge is being built up upon notions and concepts, including transcendental ones, no matter how abstract and far from the material reality perceptible to our sense organs they might seem, which allow consecutively and strictly, with a minimum degree of arbitrariness, proceeding on a minimum number of initial premises, to build, by reassessing the spiritual content of the different philosophical systems which have appeared since ancient times up until the present day, the modern Unified balanced picture of the World, and by so doing, to reconstruct the majestic Project of the Universe.
With materialistic epistemology, the impossibility of attaining absolute Truth is so obvious that the overwhelming majority of scientists in fact refuse to search for the truth at all, substituting for it artificial stereotypes, and as a result all traditional science inevitably turns into merely illustrations of a dogmatic materialistic scheme. Like a plant artificially grown in the laboratory, these stereotypes can exist only in the exotic culture of professional intellectuals. Outside of this culture they become lifeless texts and inaccessible to the understanding.
The primary task of cognition is to comprehend the secrets of Existence and to search for the unique and absolute Truth. The fulfillment of this task becomes possible only with the effective combination of reason and revelation. True knowledge, by giving preference to synthesis before analysis, strives to unite what at first glance seems incompatible.
All modern natural science and, in the first place theoretical physics, cosmology and biology, while avoiding openly doing so, nevertheless indeed certainly testify about terminating the “line of Democritus” and resurrecting the vivid and fruitful “line of Plato” which leads to the reciprocally balanced Unified scientific and theistic picture of the World.
III. Unified Scientific and Theistic Picture of the World
As the foundation of this picture of the world, there lie the following statements:
1. The objectively existing world is not exhausted by the world of empirical material reality (the world of things, perceived by our sense organs).
2. Beside the world of material reality, there exists some other reality, with another form of existence, which lies outside the realm of existence of the material world-that is, the World of higher reality. It does truly exist, for we observe its real manifestations in the world of material reality, in particular, in the form of natural scientific laws and numerous programs.
3. The objects of the world of material reality on the one hand are the natural material objects-the things of inorganic nature, plants, and animals, and on the other hand are man himself, which is considered as a complicatedly organized material system.
4. The objects of the World of higher reality are, in particular, the eidoses and programs-the various ideal substances which have a different form of existence from material objects.
5. The most important peculiarity of the world of material reality is that all material objects have two important characteristics:
structures, coming from the World of higher reality, and metamorphies which naturally complement each other.
Under “structure” we assume what, been the carrier of idea of necessity, common significance and regularity, compose the essence of every law.
The “metamorphy”, in contrast to structure, is a carrier of all accidental, unique, individual-that is, of all which in principle does not submit to any law and cannot be squeezed into its strict frames.
6. The observable physical world-the world of material reality in which we live, is a secondary, derivative world; to say graphically it is the “shadow” (as Plato said) of the World of higher reality which exists objectively and independently to our consciousness.
7. Matter is not the basis of all things and phenomena in the world; rather, matter is secondary.
Because of metamorphy, each material object is a misty form of an existing ideal prototype-eidos from the World of higher reality.
8. The relationships between objectively existing eidoses are set up by certain physical structures which express the essence of objective physical law.
9. Each material system is an embodiment of some ideal program created by some creator-by man or by God (the Creator of all Existence, Demiurge, Highest Reason). Each program has its own purpose or goal; there are no programs without purpose, they have a quite definite purpose; there are no programs without purpose; and there is an author of the program-its creator.
10. The World of higher reality is infinite, eternal, and unchanging. There are no such categories as time and space, motion, evolution, birth and death in this world.
11. In contrast to the World of higher reality, the world of material reality is finite-that is, it contains in itself a large but finite number of atoms, and it is finite in time and space. At the same time as the world of material reality was born out of the Big Bang, in the physical world there appeared the categories characteristic of this world: time and space, motion, evolution, birth and death.
12. The Universe, that is the World, which includes the World of higher reality along with the world of material reality, itself represents an open system.
13. At the foundation of the Universe there exists, externally in relation to it, the all-embracing Origin-transcendent, transrational, inconceivable, superindividual God (Absolute) Which is accessible through revelation only as mystical knowledge.
14. Among all ideal structures and programs, which determine the laws of inorganic nature and lie in the foundation of all life, a special position is occupied by the animistic program (from animus-the soul), the inclusion of which was the necessary condition for man to appear as an individual having reason, will, the freedom of choice, and the capability for creativity.
IV. The Primacy of the World of Higher Reality and the Secondary Nature of the World of Material Reality
Both of these worlds exist objectively, independent of the consciousness and feelings of man. Because material objects are perceived by our sense organs, they are described by natural language. To describe ideal and abstract prototypes requires special languages. Even the ancient philosophers understood that this language must be the language of mathematics. “None can comprehend the divine science if he is devoid of mathematical skills.” (Boethius, 480-524).
“Embarking upon the path laid by the ancients, let us say together with them that, if it is given to us to approach the divine only through symbols, then it is most convenient to use mathematical symbols, because of their immutable reliability.” (3)
In this way, according to suggested concept, the material objects present themselves as only eroded, movable, appearing and disappearing shadows of invisible but in some sense more real prototypes-proto-objects or eidoses illuminated by God’s light.
Thus, the physical world in which we live, and which is perceived by our sense organs, is something secondary and derivative from the more fundamental World of higher reality which exists objectively and independently of our consciousness.
As Nikolai Kuzanski wrote in his time: “All of our wise and divine teachers came to agree that the visible indeed is the image of the invisible and that it is possible, in this way, to see the Creator in His creation as in a mirror and in resemblance.” (4)
V. The Content and Hierarchical Structure of the World of Higher Reality
In the World of higher reality, for each material object from the world of material reality there are one or several really existing prototypes of this object-the eidoses.
But along with eidoses there also exists a certain class of ideal objects-ideals-for which there are no material images. For example, transcendental or complex numbers. The multitude of ideals is also a part of the World of higher reality.
Among the prototypes in the World of higher reality (ideals and eidoses) there exist relationships serving the unity of the whole, as each prototype is connected to all the other ones similar to it, through one and the same fundamental correlation. Thus it is possible to say that a certain structure is superimposed upon the multitude of ideal prototypes.
The presence of structure in the World of abstract prototypes manifests in the material world as fundamental laws which allow experimental verification. That is, the structures which exist eternally among the ideal objects in the World of higher reality are reflected in our world of material reality in the form of approximate “laws of the nature,” and are immanent to our world.
As there is no strict border between eidoses and ideals (eidoses, which allow graphic interpretation, are closely connected with the most abstract mathematical notions, which are not directly interpretable), there is manifest that “inconceivable affectivity of mathematics” which traps the scientist in a tight corner, maintaining a materialistic stand and refusing to recognize the objective existence of mathematical structures.
VI. The Law and the Program
The laws alone, produced by the structures from the World of higher reality, are clearly not enough for existence of the world of material reality. A multitude of programs, which determine the evolution and behavior of the objects of the material world, is needed.
Just as knowing the equations alone does not suffice for the solution of a given task, for which it is also necessary to know the initial conditions, in the same way, generally, along with fundamental laws, there must also exist programs.
Every mutual coordination of the whole is via the realization of certain programs.
A law carries in itself the idea of necessity. A program, in contrast, conveys the element of freedom. With the same set of laws, there can exist many different programs.
Man in his purposeful activity, by depending upon the laws of nature, creates for himself and by himself the specific programs according to which he acts, in order to achieve various goals-building a house, constructing a radio, or designing a computer. In contrast to the law, it is possible to change or even to destroy the program. In this way, the destruction of the program of mutual coordination of the whole natural environment, which was initially laid (by whom, and how?) in nature, brought about by the stormy progress of human activity, can and already has led to ecological catastrophe.
It is obvious that neither laws nor structures nor programs are the material objects. They exist objectively and belong to the World of higher reality.
The program is a result of the free creativity of a creator. The creator is either God or man. In particular, the selection of certain specific values for the cosmological constants is one of the programs for the self-coordination of the whole world of material reality. Another widespread case of a particular program is the setting up of the initial conditions.
A program, in contrast to a law, assumes a certain purpose or goal and is created before its realization in the world of material reality. In this sense any program is of a teleological nature.
Considering the transition from inorganic nature to living organisms, we must inevitably complete the laws of nature with corresponding programs. Here again it is necessary to acknowledge the existence of the Highest creative origin-the Highest Creator-because any program as a matter of fact is the product of a creative act.
Recognizing the existence of the most manifold programs in the world, we thereby recognize the existence of God as the Highest Creator.
Thus the deepest meaning of the first lines in the Gospel of John becomes clear: “In the beginning there was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Indeed the Word is actually the program.
1. The study of the physical laws and Euclidean geometry well-known even from middle school has led me to the discovery of the physical structures on whose language all fundamental physical laws are formulated in the same way. This circumstance has convinced me of the existence of universal principle or some origin which lies at the foundation of all fundamental physics.
2. On the other hand, Burbaks showed that mathematics likewise presents itself as a united whole, at the foundation of which lie three root mathematical structures:
the structure of algebra;
the structure of order; and
the structure of topology.
3. It is possible to demonstrate that from the theory of physical structures there emerge as a consequence or as theorems the “axioms” of all global geometries. In this way the existence of a single origin lying at the foundation of the precise sciences (physics and mathematics) begins to manifest.
4. Thus, I realized that the physical and mathematical structures which lie at the foundation of contemporary science have a common nature and present themselves as a special form of existence which differs from the form of existence of material objects. The physical and mathematical structures exist objectively, independently to discovering them scientists-to physicist-theorists and mathematicians, and present themselves as examples of the existence of a fundamentally different reality.
5. The question arises: are these physical and mathematical structures the only examples of the manifestation of the new reality which differs fundamentally from material reality?
In connection with this the new question has arisen: What is life?
Every living organism ultimately consists of the same atoms and follows the same physical laws which the inorganic material objects follow. All the difference between living organism and inorganic object is in existence of a quite definite and sensible program which was inserted (by whom? and how?) at a certain moment in the DNA molecule, which was not living before, in the form of a concrete sequence of the four nucleotides (adenosine, thymine, guanine, cytosine).
Gradually I became convinced that exactly these sensible and purposeful programs, rather than the notorious “natural selection,” determine by themselves the principal difference between biology and the precise sciences where mainly physical and mathematical structures reign.
6. I realized that our World is similar to a computer. As it is known, the computer presents itself as a unity of computer hardware and applied software. Without applied software, even the most perfect computer with the most superb peripheral hardware becomes useless dead “iron.” Only a solid program can inhale the “soul” into a computer and create a convenient and clever machine.
Thus, the World of higher reality as a hierarchical system consists at least of two qualitatively different ideal substances-the structures, which play in the world of material reality the role of laws, and the programs, which provide the unity and coordination of the World as one, and, in particular, the multitudes of programs residing at the foundation of living organisms.
7. Next, the whole rationally conceivable world, the Universe, presents itself as an open system which consists of two parts tightly connected to each other:
the natural world which exists outside and independently of man; and
the world of man.
With this we should acknowledge that man, being a part of natural world, is yet separated from it by a truly astronomical distance and by the same astronomical speed of evolution.
What then is man as an individual?
From purely positivistic notions, man is the most mysterious object of science, which confuses researchers. The special position of man in the animal world is determined by the presence of his deep and unique spiritual world.
8. The spiritual world of man, which is a new ideal substance as opposed to structure and program, determines by itself the fundamental difference of the humanitarian sciences from the natural sciences and, graphically speaking, occupies the third level in the hierarchically ordered World of higher reality.
Though the problem is that sensual experience and rationalistic methods of cognition do not provide anything for the understanding of the phenomena of man. From the materialistic point of view, the cause and purpose of life will remain forever impenetrable to the human intellect
Human experience goes far beyond the limited materialistic science of man, in both scope and variety.
Besides the external (sensual) experience, man is also endowed with “internal” experience. This spiritual experience is that true source of knowledge about the “upper levels” of the World of higher reality, and is the source of religious knowledge and of all spiritual culture in general. That is why it is important not to lose the spiritual culture of our ancestors, and not to brush aside the inspirations, revelations, and religious culture of previous generations, but to become absorbed in and steeped in the contents of the writings of well-known theologians, civic folklore, ancient legends and myths.
“All the contemporary spiritual crisis which is been endured by humanity can be explained by the fact that humanity has already for several generations ignored the sources of spiritual experience, become unaccustomed, and ceased to use it; being blinded by the success of natural science and technology, and having cooled down toward the religious depths of life, it entirely (or almost entirely) entrusted itself to the sensual feelings and to the practice which has grown out of them.” (5)
But the whole spiritual experience of humanity testifies that at the foundation of the internal world of man there lies the transcendent origin, above and beyond this world, which is of a fundamentally different nature than that of the external world. And, though man is the product of evolution, that evolution is purposeful and has created him in “the image and likeness of God.” Our capacity for creativity and for abstract thinking, and ability to understand the World around us is not “the property of highly organized matter,” but presents itself as the particle of God inserted into us. And it is not labor at all, but only the very act of inspiration, in its own way, which detached man from the rest of the humanoid family as a unique creature.