There is a huge amount of possible relationships between science and spirituality.
The most obvious one in our science-based culture is to explore spirituality through science. For instance, we can explore the effects of different practices. How do they show up in how people experience and live their lives? What bodily changes correlate with practices, regular long-term practice, different states, and a genuine Ground awakening? How does it show up in the structure and activity of the brain, the nervous system, endocrine system, muscles and so on? Also, we can explore the science of spiritual practices on their own terms. What works and how? What are the dynamics and mechanisms behind practices from the different traditions? How similar are the ones that appear quite similar?
We can also explore science through spirituality, especially and most productively from within reality awake to itself. For instance, how do current models and views in science correspond to reality as it appears to a mystic? How can they be rephrased so they are better aligned while still staying true to current science?
Equally interesting is how we can use current stories from science as fodder for practices.
In general, we know from science – and also from everyday life if we are honest – that we can never know anything for certain. We create models and stories about the world, and these can be more or less functional and helpful in a practical sense, but they are not in any way “true”. We also know that our current worldviews and most basic assumptions will be outdated and obsolete at some point in the future. So as a practice, I can find the stories I take as true and inquire into them. What are my most basic assumptions about life and myself?
The Universe Story may be an especially rich source for practices. It helps us shift into a wider sense of us, embracing not only humanity and the earth as a whole, but the whole of the universe. It gives a deep sense of belonging. It gives us a clear ethical direction, an encouragement to find choices and actions that support ourselves and the larger wholes we are part of. And when told, it can function as a pointing out instructions inviting in a shift into Big Mind. It also embraces all branches of science, so whatever good stuff is found there can be included, for instance recognizing that no matter how many and apparently sophisticated and functional stories we have about the world and ourselves, we really don’t know.
From quantum physics, we realize that our conventional views of the world may be functional at our size and time scale, but does not describe reality at the very small levels. We are baffled and realize we don’t know. So again, as a practice I can find stories I take as true and inquire into them. Can I know for certain they are true? What happens when I take them as true? Who and how am I without those stories? What are the truths in their reversals?
Quantum physics and everyday life also shows us that expectations tends to create certain outcomes. An assumption becomes a plan. So I can take specific stories I tend to take as true and explore what happens when I do, and how they may become a self-fulfilling prophecy for me. And this goes for stories about awakening as well.
Quantum physics also reminds us of another thing we know from everyday life: our stories about the world filter the world for us. Phenomena are filtered through our stories and, our experience of the world is – quite literally – created by these stories, including the experience of space, time, entities, me and a separate I. As a practice, I can explore how this happens through investigating the sense fields.
Evolutionary psychology gives us a deep time context for our current impulses and inclinations, and the ways we get ourselves into trouble. Recognizing that this has to do with our evolutionary past, and is shared by all humans, makes it a little less personal. There is more distance to it which not only gives space for different choices, but also helps us notice that what we really are is that which holds this human self. Our human self happens within what we really are.
Psychology and brain science shows us that choices are made, and that we later – even if it is just a fraction of a second later – interpret and take credit or blame for it. As a practice, I can notice how I interpret my own choices and behaviors and take credit or blame for it. Exploring it through the sense fields, I can notice how something happens, the image of a doer, and a story saying that the doer did it.
These are just a few examples. Anything, whether from science or any other source, can be explored in terms of how it appears within the context of what we are, and also as a question and pointer for practice.
Through all of this and in other ways, we see how science and spirituality can not only shed light on each other, but also profoundly enrich and enhance each other. After all, spirituality and science are both about reality and truth.
- science and spirituality
- science of spirituality
- mechanisms, effects of practices etc.
- physical correlations (scans etc.)
- science and spirituality
- quantum physics (don’t know, observer effect, filters etc.)
- universe story (shift into bm + ethics + wide sense of us, kosmocentric)
- evolutionary psychology (story of where is coming from, easier to allow identification to release out of)
- decision making (act then interpret, create plausible explanation for it, take credit/blame for it)
- each one, valuable in different ways + see how appear w/in context of what we are + how can be used as a tool
- divine mind
- all, forms w/in divine mind, w. certain habits
- science, explore those habits, create models of them
- filtered through our views + changed by them, appear differently to us, accommodate as far as possible
- science of spirituality
– explore spirituality through science
– explore science through spirituality
– explore how stories from science can be used as/in practices
– explore how can mutually enhance and enrich each other
In general, we know from science – and also from everyday life if we are honest – that we can never know anything for certain. We create models and stories about the world, and these can be more or less functional and helpful in a practical sense, but they are not in any way “true”. There will always be an indefinite number of other stories that fit the data as well or better, and help us function as well or better. Some of those may be known by humanity, but most of them are not known by anyone yet. We also know that our current worldviews and most basic assumptions will be outdated and obsolete at some point in the future.
Evolutionary psychology tells us why we have the impulses and inclinations we have as human beings, and why we sometimes get ourselves into trouble. Recognizing that this has to do with our evolutionary past makes it easier for us to disidentify from it, and
Psychology shows us that choices are made, and that we later – even if it is just a fraction of a second later – interpret and take credit or blame for it. As a practice, I can notice how I interpret my own choices and behaviors, and take credit or blame for it. And also how the “doer” comes in