An Autonomous Agent

exploring the noosphere

Category: science (Page 2 of 24)

The Scientist – Raphael Mechoulam

The Scientist details the life and work of Raphael Mechoulam, the grandfather of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). He stands in that class of wonderful thinkers which includes people like Albert Hofmann, Alexander Shulgin, among others.

Inner Worlds, Outer Worlds (2012)

Compilation of various ideas on mysticism and science.

Steps to an Ecology of Mind – Gregory Bateson

The papers, essays, and lectures contained in Steps to an Ecology of Mind showcase Gregory Bateson’s incredibly unique perspective. Due to the wide range of discussion within this collection, it is very difficult to write a concise summary. There are a few points which made a lasting impact in my mind.

He explains the levels of learning and how the animal mind can “learn about learning” and “think about thinking”; concerning humans – they can reach a third and possibly fourth level in this learning recursion hierarchy. He discusses this in the context of various subjects: anthropology, psychology, evolution, information, ecology, cybernetics and epistomoglogy in general.

He emphasizes that western science should adjust the way it thinks about relationship and form and discusses how these are relavant to the study of matter and energy. He questions the western conception of mammalian emotions, aesthetics, and the ego-self. On several occasions I found myself with the desire to re-read Godel, Escher, Bach by Douglas Hofstadter. Both books I think contain some overlap in their treatment of information and the mind. Overall, Bateson was an incredible thinker and you will improve your intellect by reading this collection of work.

The Holographic Universe – Michael Talbot

After watching an interview with Michael Talbot on YouTube, I was eager to read his book, The Holographic Universe. Despite being published in 1991, the book contains a wide range of references and resources perfect for any reader in 2016 interested in the boundary between science and the paranormal. I recommend this book, not because it provides profound new insight, but because of the huge number of paranormal examples (if legitimate) and historical occurrences with which any reader may have a difficult time fitting into their framework of reality. Of course, it is unwise to accept anything you read as truth; however, the source material is listed and the reader can stroll down any path he/she wishes in their own personal investigation of these topics. My own path is now taking me into the work of Dr. Stanislav Grof,  Rick Strassman, etc… and topics such as LSD, DMT, NDEs and OBEs.

Wholeness and the Implicate Order – David Bohm

The collection of papers composing the book, Wholeness and the Implicate Order by David Bohm, provides an introduction to the idea of holomovement and the implicate order of the universe. In other words, the entire known and un-known universe exists as a single inseparable flow. All parts are contained in any specified part, just as in a hologram. And all that humans observe with their biological and technological sensory apparatus are sub-regions of explicate order which form from within this whole.

As a metaphor, Bohm takes the experiment introduced by John Heller, shown below, and explains that the original oval shape drops of dye can be thought of as an explicate ordering of color and structure in time and space. After the experiment proceeds, this explicate order mixes into the glycerin system. Now, imagine the implicate order as consisting of the glycerin and dye system modified via the rotation. The system contains the original explicate ordering of the drops, in other words the existence of the dye as drops of individual colors is encoded by the glycerin system.

BUT, up to now the metaphor has been like a “time-reversal.” The real point of Bohm is that if the system is now rotated in the opposite direction, the dye will condense out of the system as an explicate order of color and shape identical to the original. This is how he suggests that the universe, i.e. the implicate order of the holomovement forms all explicate orders, including consciousness, observed by humans.

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