Exploring the Quantum Tools for Right Living
The following is excerpted from How Quantum Activism Can Save Civilization, available from Hampton Roads Publications.
Quantum physics was discovered through the study of the motion of elementary particles at the atomic and subatomic level. Many people still cannot get over the prejudice that quantum thinking must be engaged only when we deal with the submicroscopic world of matter. The same people also think that the world is fundamentally made of matter and the real world is objective, local, rational, and deterministic. These people cannot rise beyond the concept of IQ brain-based mental intelligence in their belief system, although many of them take regular forays into the supramental when they creatively discover the solutions to their scientific problems. Their relationship with the world outside their profession may be seriously handicapped because of their faulty belief system. They more often than not live a loveless life (that is, they live in their head, not their heart), they cannot discriminate between good and evil consequences of either their professional or their social work (they are not bothered by developing the atomic bomb or such things), and happiness and emotional equanimity elude them, but they don't know why.
The problem with a worldview that is strictly objective, deterministic, and materialist (scientific materialism-oriented) is that it gives us a highly skewed view of us and our consciousness, emotions, meanings, conscience, and values. In materialism, everything is made of matter; thus consciousness and all subjective phenomena related to it, such as conscience, are relegated to mere epiphenomena of matter (as a gold ornament is an epiphenomenon of gold) without causal efficacy. If consciousness has no causal efficacy, how can we transform? How can we apply the dictates of our conscience? How can we love?
But science is changing, and people who are following this change are realizing that they have to take a transformative path in order to develop a 21st-century science and a code of living that can deal with transformation. Such people are consciously using supramental intelligence (limited though it may be). It is as a result of their work that a scientific treatment of transformation removing all confusion on the subject can today be given.
Once we understand the quantum principles, it greatly facilitates our attempts to develop supramental intelligence. The truth is, everybody has access to the supramental world; many of us just don't explore it for one reason or another. The materialist people do not use it optimally because of faulty ideology in which they have vested interest. What is your reason?
It doesn't matter. with help from quantum principles, as explained later, I am convinced that your reasons for avoiding the supramental will dissipate and you will be able to move onto the transformative path (unending as it may seem), leaving behind the information superhighway to nowhere. The world and its 21st-century problems need you and your capacity for processing supramental intelligence.
You probably like to dance occasionally. Dancing has a unique spontaneity that sometimes surprises the dancer; it seems to happen by itself, effortlessly. When even a limited amount of supramental intelligence manifests in us, it is like dancing in the world much of the time. Resonating with Lewis Carroll, "will you, won't you, will you, won't you, won't you join the dance?"
The Quantum Tools toward Supramental Intelligence and Transformation
Why is transformation a relatively rare commodity? The psychologist Abraham Maslow, who did a definitive study of (partially) transformed people (Maslow's term for these people was people of positive mental health), estimated that maybe 5 percent of all people belong to this category. What is the explanation of this rarity?
Let's put it in a different way, in keeping with the mystic philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti. He used to chide people, and I paraphrase: why can't you change? Why can't you embrace nonviolence? Great teachers have given you the message of nonviolence for millennia, and good recipes, too. You all have tried to follow them. But why do you fail? Why does a vast majority of people fail? Because you try to be nonviolent in a continuous way. You think, today I will be a little less violent, and tomorrow even less. It doesn't work like that!
So how does transformation work, if not through continuous effort, if not by applying rational intelligence? Can any movement, any change be discontinuous?
There are two reasons that people tend to be skeptical about discontinuous change. One is that as adults they seldom experience a discontinuous movement of consciousness. Generally, our experiences are continuous. We look outside, close our eyes, or go to sleep; when we open our eyes or wake up from sleep, the same outside world is there. Continuity seems to prevail. If we look inside, we find thoughts and feelings that seem to make up a continuous stream of consciousness. The second reason for skepticism is the brainwashing that goes on today under the guise of scientific education in favor of rationality, in favor of a continuous algorithmic answer to every problem.
From its very inception, quantum physics has told us of the validity of the concept of discontinuous movement. Consider once again Niels Bohr's picture of the discontinuous movement of the electron in the atom. In the atom, the electrons go around the nucleus, the core of the atom, in orbits; this part of the electron's movement is continuous, one little bit at a time. But when the electron jumps from one orbit to another, something it does whenever there is emission of light from the atom, the electron never goes through the intervening space. One moment it is here; and then it is there, instantly. This quantum leap, Bohr style, remains a good model of discontinuous movement in nature.
Can we describe the movement of quantum leap via continuous algorithms, via mathematics, via causal logic, via mechanical modeling? No. So where does the doctrine of continuity (which underlies determinism -- if motion can be determined even in principle, continuity must prevail so we can calculate, at least in principle) stand now? The doctrine of continuity has to be given up!
The materialist can still hope that maybe quantum physics is not the final theory of physics, or maybe quantum physics can be reformulated in such a way that continuity prevails. But the success of quantum physics seems to indicate the futility of this kind of hope.
Alternatively, the materialist can hope that, although discontinuity undeniably prevails in the submicroscopic world, maybe it does not make it to the macroworld of our experience. Maybe when the movement of jillions of submicroscopic objects is involved, all discontinuity gets wiped out and continuity prevails once more. But this hope also does not hold up.
And as for your lack of personal experience of the discontinuous movement of consciousness, relax. It is not as foreign to you as you think. Have you seen the cartoon "The Physics Teacher," by Sidney Harris? Einstein stands before a blackboard trying to discover his law E = mc2. He writes E = ma2 and crosses it out. Next he tries E = mb2 and crosses it out. The caption says, "The creative moment." So why do you laugh when you see the cartoon? Because you know intuitively that creative discoveries do not involve step-by-step continuity; instead, they are the products of discontinuous insight.
The truth is, when you were a child, you used to take such discontinuous quantum leaps of thought quite regularly. That's how we learn things that require new contexts of thinking, such as a new mathematical concept, reading meaning in a story, and abstract thinking for the first time.
And if childhood is too remote, think of those moments when you intuit something. What happens? What is intuition? Why do you call certain thoughts intuition? Because there is no rational continuous explanation for such thoughts; there is no contextual precedent for such thoughts. An intuition is your glimpse at a future quantum leap.
In this day and age you may also take a different track. You may go see the movie The Secret and get inspired by its message that you can manifest anything. When you fail a few times, you may remember the lesson of quantum physics: the intention for manifestation must resonate with nonlocal consciousness. Then is the time to do the following exercise.
Of course, initially with this exercise, you will probably try to manifest physical things: a helicopter would be nice! You want to fly. If you keep at it, there may be a phase when you see a lot of flying dreams and the experience is frustrating. In the dream you fly so well, but you wake to find that you are grounded, you can't fly; your helicopter has not manifested. Then one day, when you wake up, a different idea occurs to you. Suppose the dream is trying to draw your attention to the fact that you can fly in your dreams, although you can't in physical reality. In other words, you can be creative in the subtle, and that is where you work on your powers of creativity and manifestation.
Transformation involves the same kind of discontinuous quantum leap in the movement of consciousness as acts of creativity in science, math, art, and music. I call the latter acts outer creativity and the former inner creativity.
So the first exploratory quantum tool for developing supramental intelligence is discontinuous quantum leaps.
Consider now another important principle of the materialist's worldview: locality. Locality is the idea that all influences that cause movement or change travel through space and time continuously, a little bit at a time. So influences that are in the local vicinity have more effect; the influences farther away are far less effective. An example derives from how a wave affects an object. When the object is close, the power of the wave reaching out to the object is strong. But at twice the distance, this power attenuates to only one-fourth of the previous strength. Furthermore, Einstein proved with his relativity theory (and experimenters have verified Einstein's relativity many times over) that influences can propagate in space and time only subject to a speed limit, the speed of light (300,000 km/sec). This is also part of the locality principle.
But for quantum objects, the locality principle does not hold. Ironically, Einstein, whose relativity theory was instrumental in establishing the locality principle, was the first, along with his two colleagues Nathan Rosen and Boris Podolsky, to see the viability of quantum nonlocality (Einstein, Podolsky, and Rosen 1935). If two quantum objects interact, they become so correlated that their mutual influence persists unabated even at a distance, even when they are not interacting via any local force or exchanging any local signals. Later the physicists John Bell and David Bohm developed ideas that made quantum nonlocality experimentally verifiable. As discussed in chapter 4, experimental verification of the idea came via the work of the physicist Alain Aspect and his collaborators. They watched two photons emitted with quantum correlation from the same calcium atom continue their correlated dance even after they were separated by distance, and without any signals exchanged between them.
As mentioned before, quantum nonlocality has now been directly verified even for human subjects (correlation between brains), leaving no doubt that quantum physics does apply to us, to the macroworld, under suitable subtle situations.
For millennia, nonlocal connections between humans have been known to exist in such phenomena as mental telepathy. What is special about the new experiments is that they are objective and the role of meditation and intention is so clearly seen in them (Grinberg-zylberbaum et al. 1994).
Our consciousness ordinarily works with local stimuli, either from the physical environment or from memory; this is the ego mode. In nonlocal communication, we transcend the local ego mind and momentarily use quantum consciousness. Like creatives who (somewhat unconsciously) use momentary forays into quantum consciousness to process supramental intelligence in their professional field, psychics are people who have the access (again somewhat unconsciously) to quantum consciousness in the area of nonlocal communication. This access to quantum consciousness can be used to process supramental intelligence as well.
As I have stated before, quantum physics makes the idea of nonlocal communication of information scientifically feasible. Here are a couple of exercises for you to access quantum consciousness, God, through an experience of quantum nonlocality. This should open your door further for processing supramental intelligence.
One word of caution. Nonlocal communication is the easiest entry point to nonlocal consciousness. It can be used for accessing God, but it can and is often used in the pursuit of power. The sage Patanjali warned us all about this danger, and a quantum activist is well advised not to fall prey to this tendency.
Self-referential collapse that gives us the subject-object split in an experience is tangled hierarchical as opposed to simple hierarchical. What does this mean? In a tangled hierarchy, the levels of the hierarchy are codependent, each has causal efficacy over the other, and yet, the causal efficacy is only an appearance, coming from an inviolate level. In the case of the subject-object split, the causal efficacy is neither in the subject nor in the object, but in the God consciousness beyond the subject-object split. When we learn to love tangled hierarchically, we have an opportunity to fall into the quantum self beyond the simple hierarchy of the ego. This gives another path to supramental intelligence. The spiritual tradition of Christianity mainly uses this tangled hierarchical path of love of God. "I am as needed by God," the mystic Meister Eckhart used to say, "as God is needed by me."
From Sex to Love: Sex and the New Physics
The subtitle of this section, I hope, does not give you the impression that I am talking about some exotic new quantum recipe for enhancing sexual pleasure, that I am trying to found a kind of new age tantra, quantum sex maybe? For ordinary people of the world who choose to remain householders, the path of love is best reached through intimate relationships involving sex. What does the new physics have to say about sex? A lot, but it is subtle.
You already know that quantum physics, when properly interpreted with the conceptual lens of primacy of consciousness, is all about nonlocality, quantum leaps, and tangled hierarchy. Can sex lead to relationships in which these quantum principles play a frequent role?
When we begin our sex lives, there is a definite tendency to use sex to explore power. This is especially true of men. But mysteriously, with some special partners, we hear a different drum, we feel a different vital energy, and we are in love. How does one take a quantum leap from the tendency to use sex to make power to a tendency to use sex always to make love, not power?
How does one transform the usual romantic relationships of linear causality to quantum relationships of circular causality, from simple hierarchy to tangled hierarchy? Face it, for all the hoopla surrounding it, romantic love is simple hierarchical: she (he) is mine. How do commitment and marriage fit into this discussion?
And finally, to the main subject: How does one utilize sexual relationships as springboards to practice unconditional love? How does one make a quantum leap to a transformed being for whom sex becomes a choice rather than a compulsion?
So these are the quantum questions of sex. The answers tell us about the three stages of sexual maturity in relationship, the three stages of sexual intelligence, if you will.
From Sex in the Service of Power to Sex to Make Love
Because of our instinctual brain circuits, our sexuality is aroused easily and often by a variety of stimuli. When we are teenagers and these feelings are unfamiliar, we become confused about our sexuality. Most societies have a taboo against educating the young about sexuality. In some spiritual societies, the idea of celibacy is introduced for the young. Unfortunately, this, too, is done without much guidance as to why or how. The original idea could have been good: remain celibate until you discover romantic love when you will no longer be confused about the real goal of your sexuality. But without any avenue for such education, how is the confusion going to go away?
If a teenager goes into sex without understanding the meaning and purpose of sex (and I am not talking here about "the birds and the bees" reproductive aspect of sex that is generally taught in schools as sex education), he or she will blindly respond to the brain circuits and look upon sexuality as a gratification, as a vehicle for a unique kind of intense pleasure. Since the fulfillment of sexual pleasure with a partner raises vital energy to the third chakra, associated with ego identity with the physical body, a sense of personal power enters the equation. Hence it is common to think of "sexual conquests" in connection with sex that is not associated with romantic love.
In the western world, the pattern that has developed over the last few decades, at least for men, is this early conditioning of sex for power. women, thanks to some protective ("conservative") parents, are somewhat exempt, although that is rapidly changing. what happens when we eventually discover a partner with whom our heart chakra resonates? We enter the romantic love relationship, but we tend not to give up the habit. So when the romance runs out, which it does sooner or later, the sex-for-power tendency returns. We then have a choice. We can look for another romantic partner, or go deep in the existing relationship.
Hence the social custom of the man being the one to ask his romantic partner to enter marriage. To enter marriage is to change the equation of sex: I will commit to changing my pattern of using sex for power to using sex always to make love. This means we always allow the energy to rise to the heart after a sexual encounter; we allow ourselves to become vulnerable. Marriage is a commitment to make love, not war (conquest).
Unfortunately, this vital body agreement has concurrently to find agreements between the mental bodies of the partners as well. There the ego conditionings are very deep and involve wide areas of overlap in which competitiveness can emerge and bring down the energy from the heart chakra. Competitiveness and other negative emotions will go away only when we begin to glimpse intuitively that it is possible to surrender the negative emotions within the positive energy of love.
Inviting God to resolve your Conflicts: the Practice of unconditional Love
After it dawns on you that your intimate enemy can be your intimate friend as well, a truly respectful relationship begins to evolve between you and your partner. In this relationship, each of you are individuals, each of you can recognize the "otherness" of the other (to use sociologist Carol Gilligan's language). Now your relationship has taken a turn toward transforming from simple hierarchy to a tangled hierarchy.
In Escher's picture Drawing Hands, the tangled hierarchy is created because the left hand is drawing the right, and the right hand is drawing the left, but you can see that this is an illusion. Behind the scene, Escher is drawing them both. When through your study of the quantum paradoxes, you have truly taken the quantum leap of understanding that the reality of your manifest consciousness, the subject-hood of the subject-object partnership arises from the quantum choice and collapse from an undivided quantum consciousness, you have also identified the source of your real freedom. It is in the state of unmanifest quantum consciousness. But how do you shift your identity from the manifest to the unmanifest, even temporarily?
Now your intimate enemy-friend can become a huge boon. I spoke of creativity before. Creative insights are greatly helped if we can somehow produce a proliferation of the quantum possibilities from which our quantum consciousness chooses. Your partner is a boon in this regard because she or he introduces a second slit of a double slit arrangement through which the stimuli you process are sifted, allowing an enormous proliferation of possibilities.
You and your partner represent different slits, different points of view for sorting out stimuli, so conflicts are natural. Suppose you don't try to resolve these conflicts, but learn to live with unresolved conflicts, thus leaving it to your unmanifest quantum consciousness to process the possibilities and choose the resolution.
This practice, holding unresolved conflicts indefinitely until resolution comes from higher consciousness, is a difficult practice, but its rewards are enormous. The conditions that we impose on our love now can fall away, and love can blossom into unconditional, objective love. It is objective love because the love of quantum consciousness is objective.
And then we have choice. Once we can love unconditionally, sex is a choice. we do not need it to make love. we have a positive emotional love circuit in our brain now. we can still include sex in our love relationship if appropriate and if we so choose, of course, but sex is no longer compulsory. We don't have to engage in it helplessly.
This is the legendary love of Krishna and his gopis, celebrated in the Hindu Vaishnavite tradition. On special full moon nights, Krishna dances with his 10,000 gopis, all at once. Or so the legend goes. Can Krishna duplicate himself in 10,000 bodies? If you think of Krishna's love as love in space and time, you will be puzzled by this legend. It must be a metaphor! It is. The unconditional love of Krishna is always celebrated outside of space and time, nonlocally.
From Spiritual Materialism to total Surrender
Some words of caution once more before we go further. In our materialist society, we have become corrupted by behavioral psychology and have moved toward a reward-punishment motivation for our spiritual accomplishments. Remember that this is spiritual materialism; it becomes a big barrier to your personal spiritual fulfillment, especially if you want to arrive at a permanent identity with God consciousness (called nirvikalpa or the "no boundaries" stage) and live mostly in your quantum self in this very human condition. Remember, gaining mastery in the form of the overmind is only a stopgap goal; the ultimate objective is to arrive at a station of consciousness wherein even ego-level memory-based responses conform to supramental intelligence as far as possible.
So one never loses sight of the ultimate goal-to give up ego supremacy in favor of the quantum self-God consciousness. The practice toward that end is to undermine the accomplisher within us, not to take ourselves too seriously. In other words, we dance, but always lightly, not caring what anyone thinks of us, not even what I think of me.
Karma yoga is the yoga of applying yogic practice right in the middle of real life. Karma means "action" and yoga means "union" or "integration," so karma yoga means the union of ego and spirit through the path of action. This is an important practice of service to others in many spiritual traditions, especially Hinduism, Christianity, and Soto zen. In these traditions, however, this service is often not a part of one's livelihood. For a quantum activist, karma yoga as part of earning your living is encouraged.
If you are satisfied with your current livelihood, obviously you can practice karma yoga while earning your living. But if you have a mismatch, this is not practical. Part 3 takes you into real-life situations of our society and points you toward finding a suitable livelihood in which you can practice karma yoga for your quantum activism. As you read through it, look for the particular context for activism that turns you on. For example, if you are a healer at heart, clearly health and healing is your arena for quantum activism. Doesn't this require years of training and huge amounts of cash? Not necessarily. As the medical paradigm changes toward an integrative medicine, there will be many new ways to receive a healing education and one of these is bound to suit you.Copyright@2011 by Amit Goswami, Ph.D. Reprinted with permission of Hampton Roads Publications. Available at any bookstore or through the publisher at email@example.com or 1-800-423-7087.