Ode to Exploration, Foe to Dogma
Descriptions of the Universe reflect the theory of a researcher more than research findings. Nonetheless, descriptions enable researchers to imagine what they might discover. Then, they invent devices able to scope out those imagined possibilities. Focus your thoughts on those devices for a moment. Those devices associated to scientific investigation extend human senses beyond human limitations. Point is this: fundamentally humans are very limited in what they can observe, but not as limited in what they can theorize.
This one truth of scientific investigation is extremely significant to this discussion. Humans utilize other tools outside their scope of experience or capacity to discover or to deduce their truths. “Duh!” you say? Before I explain why this is so important, I want to expose another tool used by scientist: mathematics.
Mathematics (at the theoretical level and less advanced) use computations, formulas, or algorithms which investigate concrete and abstract postulates. Sometimes, computations are exact in their results. Sometimes, computations measure the probability of something being factual or fictional. Sometimes, computations abstract other mathematical abstractions and derive “answers” reflective of theorems.
One more factor of scientific investigation I want to weave into this discussion is the “observer effect.” Widely accepted now, scientists must admit that their hypotheses, their tools of observation, and the very moment of their observation, alters the results of their investigation, no matter what they are investigating.
I am a social scientist as a Clinical Psychologist. I am and was always surrounded by professionals in the fields of physics, sociology, psychology, artificial intelligence, mathematics and neurology. I esteem and respect scientific methodologies, tools and scientific efforts to discover information. I assert, nonetheless, that no scientists of integrity can assert that their conclusions are irrefutable Truths. The scientists tools of investigation (devices, mathematics, observers) are too limited.
I am also an ethereal mystic. I practice the meditations and healing arts of Reiki, Shamanic Soul Journeys, and Pranic energy to name a few. I explore and use Astral Projection, Remote Viewing, Akashic Reading, Channeling or Mediumship to discover amazing possible domains and personalities. My experiences using each of these tools seems amazing, heart-stoppingly awesome! Yet, as with science, I could never declare my findings as irrefutable Truths. The mystics tools of investigation are also too limited, and the mystic’s “observer effect” is a hugely significant compounding variable (as scientist prefer to say).
As a scientist, I see no merit in being dogmatic. As a mystic, I see no merit in being dogmatic. Both are limited because humans are limited.
Consider these four points for another moment. Point one: Scientists and mystics are driven by the same passion to discover what this existence is all about. What is this Universe, this experience, and these complexities surrounding us? Point two: scientists and mystics both wish to use the answers to these questions to empower and evolve the human path. Point three: neither the scientist nor the mystic has full, totality of understanding, and both the scientist and the mystic can only create possible interpretations of collected experiences. Neither the scientist nor the mystic — no matter how enlightened and carefully researched — can authentically embrace any “finding” as an ultimate, unchallengeable, irrefutable conclusion.
Nowadays, some scientists admit their mystical ponderings about how nature works, what consciousness might be, or what exists outside of form or beyond physical life. Clearly their useful devices, math, and “observer effects” are intrinsically limiting and helpful. Likewise, nowadays, some mystics (as spiritual or religious teachers) rid themselves of dogmatic declarations. For example, there may be more than one way to interpret sacred passages or practice the law of attraction. Clearly, a mystic’s tools are, well, not so clear to the scientific observer but very meaningful to the mystical explorer.
Scientists and mystics steered by integrity now admit experiences need to be described as discoveries or adventures but not taught as absolute irrefutable Truths. Points-of-view are simply that; views from varying points produce different eye-witness accounts.
Describing is a narrative art especially when the describer refrains from jumping to definitive conclusions. Analyzing what is witnessed also is helpful until the analysis is embraced as conclusive dogma. Mystics and Scientist describe, analyze and, oops, dogmatize.
Dogmatism clogs the arteries of discovery for both the scientist and the mystic. Why?: Dogmas cause the following: 1) Researchers stop researching while they preach their dogmatic conclusions; 2) Students of researchers become passive, believing no more truths need be discovered; 3) Students and colleagues refrain from challenging the dogmatized findings, fearing embarrassment and rejection by their essential communities; and 4) Dogmas become societal constructs, governing future thought, and forcing research and conclusions to be blindly focused and limited. In the presence of Dogma, descriptions and analysis of experiences can not be free to be investigated further. Progression of thought and evolution of perceptions are paralyzed when dogma reigns over scientific or mystical explorations.
So, (here’s the goal of this entry): wonder if each of us – as scientists and mystics in our own fashion – become open-minded explorers who learn from each other’s explorations, observations and tentative conclusions. Also, wonder if we also share open-mindedly our own discoveries while NONE of us become dogmatic about our exciting and meaningful discoveries.
Oh, I forgot to add, as you likely now know, I am also an optimistic idealist. I relish the image of our world flowing with humane respect, curiosity, open-mindedness and the awe of mutual discovery. I long for conversations wherein narratives of someone’s experiences are enthusiastically shared with wonder and hypotheses. It seems to me that we each are blind, insightful, limited, expanding, and passionate explorers and creators. None of us needs to become slaves to anyone’s dogma, not even to our own intensely convincing but refutable Truths.