Consciousness, Physics, Psychology, Religion

Evaluating Consciousness: Physics vs Psychology vs Religion
Date: Monday, May 17, 1999 4:28 PM

A few recently posted quotes from Einstein, compiled by Kevin Harris (c) 1995, may apply to contemporary evaluation of the nature of consciousness, eg,

"As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality."

"Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts."

"Science without religion is lame. Religion without science is blind."

Many scientists are investigating the nature of the "consciousness factor" as it applies to the relationship of mind between observer and observed. Traditionally, psychologists have been involved in the study of the nature of the relative identity of the observer and how the "mind" (by way of biological factors, environmental factors, belief systems, emotional responses, values, etc.) defines or describes the identity of the observer and interactions between observers.

On the other hand physicists traditionally have been concerned with applying mathematics as rigorously as possible to methods of quantitatively describing the dynamics of systems of reality under observation, ie, the observed.

The exciting thing, and the difficult thing, about the recent collaboration of these two fields in investigating the nature of this "consciousness factor" is their common focus on this problem from these two perspectives which employ different vocabularies and tools.

If the "consciousness factor" can be quantitatively evaluated in terms agreeable to both psychology and physics, would this require the mathematical quantification of the identity of the observer in a way that correlates it mathematically to the quantitative description of the identity of the system of reality under observation?

Shouldn't any comprehensive theory on the nature of this "consciousness factor" also include evaluation of other properties and aspects of the mind such as the operation of faith and belief? It may seem obvious that no scientific theory will have general value in its application until enough people believe it to be correct (true), but a question normally outside the domain of both physics and psychology is "how can the operation of faith/belief/religion be integrated into a quantitative understanding of the consciousness factor?"

Do we simply ignore the observable fact that various "paranormal anomalies" occur *because* of the consciousness of the observer focused through the lens of his/her belief system, eg, religious miracles, power/nature of prayer, faith healing, etc.? Is there a contemporary theory of consciousness bridging physics, psychology and religion with an understanding of the consciousness factor as it applies in each of these areas? If all religions have at their root a common message and truth, is this message understandable within the realms of evaluation by modern science? Is there a consciousness factor common to all belief sytems that is the relationship between observer and observed?

Is there something about the nature of light itself, the C in E=mC^2, that has been overlooked as a starting point to define/distinguish mathematically the delineation between observer and observed? By definition, C cannot be accurately described as the velocity of light because any change in reference frame direction would mean a change in the vector component of this "vector" quantity (velocity) so that the velocity cannot be a constant value, "by definition", whenever the direction of light changes. C^2 is commonly described as the scalar value of the square of the speed of light (a "constant"). But is there more to it? Is it possible that this proportionality constant between energy and mass (of the observed) can be better conceptualized and mathematically quantified to reflect its innate connection to the relative identity of the observer rather than assuming that it only relates to the notion of the exclusively objective nature of reality, ie, the fundamental scientific assumption of the nature of reality as "exclusively independent of and identically observable by all observers irrespective of the nature of the relative identity of the observer"?

Doesn't the key to thoroughly describing the consciousness factor lay in the ability to understand the nature of the identity of the observer, ie, who is that masked "I am" anyway?

David Crockett Williams 17May99
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