2006 10 27
By William Brandon Shanley | opednews.com
A paradigm shift is underway, and a bright, bold new post-material, post-scarcity era called The Age of Infinity is rapidly emerging.
The Age of Infinity will be characterized by infinite power and potential that mirrors that nature of the universe: quantum computing, unlimited memory, nanotechnology, digital universe, virtual reality, free energy (zero point energy and myriad others), genetic engineering, life extension, AI, elemental transmutation, teleportation, infinite universal-human mind/consciousness -- and much, much more. All of these vectors are pointing to infinity. And it will be quite a ride. If only we can make through the next 15-20 years. I am confident that we will.
How can I make such claims about the future? Simply because these technologies and sciences are characteristics of the nature of nature and we need only unfold what already is and "ride the horse in the direction its going" to make them tangible.
All science is an awakening to what already is. Our inventions and systems simply mimic what nature has already perfected with utmost efficiency through intelligent networks and least action principles. Through time, as our glasses become more and more refined, we're able to see more deeply into the infinite fecundity, creativity, power, potential, and perfection of the cosmos and thereby create successively more successful theories, maps, metaphors and meanings to represent it.
In this essay, I'll discuss my views about the infinite power and potential of the universe and what I see to be the obsolete, inauthentic and deadly scarcity-based economic systems which are killing the planet. I say obsolete because we now know they are inaccurate thanks to quantum physics. I say inauthentic because they do not reflect what is and are organized to maintain, create or increase the wealth of the haves. I say deadly, because they are killing us. This is not a point of view you're likely to hear discussed in economic or political circles, so perhaps you'll tell me if it's fresh. In one discussion at least, I seemed to cause a Yale micro-economist to run the other way when my facts undermined fundamental tenets of his profession that 1) "man could never have enough" and 2) nature was scarce. When I suggested it was only our thinking that was scarce, and after making point after point to support my view, he finally realized the absurdity of his claim that 50 billion galaxies and 100 million times 100 million stars were not enough! Such is the depth of the humanity's belief in scarcity and our leading institutions' commitment to it. As I will attempt to show, not only is this thinking wrong-headed and deadly, but it is both a fantasy and an addiction.
As such, I expect more than a few howls of "foul" or claims of "fantasy" to try to divert us from bringing into view what is cosmically apparent. Just as it took more than 150 years for people to accept the Earth was round, it will likely take at least that long for people to awaken to the facts like the universe is a coherent plenum overflowing with the physical and non-physical; Earth is an abundant whole; nature is an intelligent, interpenetrated faster-than-light network; the universe is a process of exchange that calculates, computes and is constantly taking in information about the whole when a wave returns to its ground state; the universe is an open system, everything effects everything else, there are no secrets and there is no place to hide; human intent changes matter and light seems to know our intent before we decide; the human mind/consciousness is unlimited; the universe appears to be a conscious, active, living hologram; and, it has a purpose.
My background is not in economics. I am by trade a broadcast journalist and documentary filmmaker. In the course of working with more than a dozen popular author-scientists over several years in the 90's creating and editing a science novel for young non-scientists, Lewis Carroll's Lost Quantum Diaries (DVA, Stuttgart: 1998; Tokuma-Shoten, Tokyo: 2003), it became quite clear to me that the major economic models that have been extant over the millennia are obsolete because they are based on a false belief: scarcity. In fact, they manufacture scarcity.
Now, don't get me wrong, given our worldviews all these thousands of years of "civilization," the world certainly looked scarce, and became even more even more so as perception becomes reality. Thought creates. Sustained observation creates persistence. Just as the discovery of the microscope revealed bacteria and viruses to be the sources of countless diseases, and all kinds of hobgoblin superstitions and myths went the way of history, so too will our belief in scarcity.
Why? One of the chief reasons today is because the dominant economic model is supply and demand: the less there is of something the more it is worth. So, even in the face of abundance or sufficiency, businesses and entrepreneurs seek to control resources and production to create scarcity to keep prices high. We also know that abundance is a characteristic of the market economy, but not when it threatens to mitigate demand, prices or profits. Just look at what the interlocking oil and automotive industries did to the electric car in order to preserve the status quo (see What Ever Happened to the Electric Car?). The market economy also seeks to privatize and commoditize what is already free and turn it in profit, which makes what was once free to all, scarce (water, broadcast spectrum, non-profit hospitals, all commons).
I grew up being taught that hunger was an inevitable fact of life. Yet, in 1999 we learned that the Earth produces 4.3 pounds of food for every man woman and child each and every day (Peter Rosset et al, Twelve Myths about Hunger). We also know that people over-populate when they are hungry and poor. So what are we doing to ourselves through and to them?
We live inside a belief called "energy crisis" yet the entire visible universe is energy. We live inside a tiny visual and material brandwidth. Even with scientific instruments to extend our senses we can only detect 4% of what math tells us must exist. We also see the enormous background of energy that remains when all molecular activity is frozen, zero-point energy, wherein one cubic centimeter of "empty space" (quantum vacuum) contains as much as ten to the 94th power grams of energy -- more than the energy in the entire visible universe (David Bohm and many other physicists). It is not in dispute that this energy exists, only that it is accessible (See Hal Puthoff, Tom Beardon, and others on ZPE, virtual particle flux in the vacuum, over-unity devices, etc.) Would this be the dark energy/matter that constitutes 96% of the universe or is it another energy yet again? From this perspective one thing is clear: if we turn our perception around and work to develop free energy with some Iraq-destined billions, we'll lick the problem in a jiffy. But even without new energy research, the news reports we already have experimental cars with fuel cells that run on sea water (see GM's "Highwire" and others). These revolutionary vehicles use a combination of technologies classical science has known for more than one hundred years: electrolysis, a battery and generator.
We believe in the limitations of the human mind and creativity, yet the brain is capable of a greater number of associations than the number of atoms in the universe (Huston Smith, Forgotten Truth). Moreover, we now have strong evidence that the universe, of which we are a part, is an interconnected mind. As such, we would have full access to all that is. (See psychic Ingo Swann's remote viewing of the surface of Jupiter -- 52 million miles away – in SRI supervised sessions funded by the CIA and DOD. More than 90% of what Swann "saw" on the surface of Jupiter was confirmed years later in Voyager and Pioneer spacecraft fly-bys of the planet. See also, Dean Radin's Entangled Minds about the plethora of psi experiments and what his meta-analyses show.)
Since these facts have not percolated into our awareness, we see very few ways out of the Scarcity Matrix. This nightmare, pseudo-reality is held in place by everything from scarcity banking (short supply of fiat money backed by nothing, how could this nothing ever be scarce?); the work of governments (wars, arms production, budget gaps, taxation, interest on fiat money debt); charities, philanthropies and NGOs; Social Darwinism and worker-debt-enslavement; depreciatory concepts of self by corporations and society in order to market products necessitating the expenditure of enormous amount of time and human capital in psychotherapy, psychiatry and related health defects; the maintenance of starvation and the increase in global poverty in the face of abundance or sufficiency; malnutrition through the promotion and consumption of mal food products; the cynical tricks and lies favoring elites inherent in funding human development and poverty programs, as well as the exorbitant overhead in the delivery of almost all social services; lack of access to adequate medicines to eradicate disease; etc. All these, I contend, are held in place by a belief in scarcity whose purpose is to maintain, create or increase upward demand on prices for the haves in an incoherent mass illusion all the while telling itself it is doing otherwise. For knowing what we know, what else could it be?
As you can gather, the problem is so pervasive, being embedded in language and meanings and evaluations of reality as it is, it is impossible to even address the issue without using scarcity terminology -- just listen to me!
As a result, we have manifested a thought system ruling the global dominion in which half its inheritors live on less than $4 per day, one in six on less than $1. Ten per cent of the human family takes a 54% cut while the bottom 40% lives on 5%. Such is the nature of the Scarcity Matrix and no number of wars, terrorist acts, studies, laws, regulatory committees, fines, training programs or moral arguments can ever overcome it, change it or fix it because these activities are all predicated upon this false, undistinguished reality existent within the invisible Big Lie.
In my view, the belief in scarcity is actually a deep seated meaning and hidden operator installed in the neurophysiology of virtually all people. Perhaps gurus and mystics can claim otherwise, but I have never met a person, no matter how rich or poor, talented or beautiful that didn't have a fundamental, hidden, negative belief about themselves that served to create a limited context for their lives from which their thinking, behavior and actions flowed. Adapting maverick physicist and philosopher David Bohm's insights (Thought as a System, On Creativity, and other books), this hidden operator in the thought system installs in the function of thought. Bohm's point is that even in the face of changing contents, the hidden meaning/context/function remains unchanged unless and until it is brought into awareness and seen to be inauthentic or false.
Bohm on the fragmentation between the content of thought and its function:
"One of the main reasons why we actually find it very difficult to attend to our thought... is that our notions concerning the general nature of thought are themselves fragmentary and confused. The confusion begins very early in life. At a certain age (as observed by Piaget, that of development from relatively immediate and direct sensory motor thought to more abstract symbolization of thought, in terms of language) the child often tends to suppose the content of his thought (for instance, imaginary objects) to be as real as things that can be seen or touched. Eventually he discovers, of course, that such content is only "imaginary," and thus he comes to regard it as "unreal." A young child is, however, probably not yet ready to understand something much more subtle, which is crucially important in this regard. This is that, while the content of the thought may be either "real" or "unreal," its function is nevertheless always real. This function is, first, to give meaning and shape to the perception by calling attention to what is regarded as relevant or essential in the context of interest and second, to give rise to feelings and urges that promote actions appropriate to the context, i.e. it contains what we may call motivation. (Emphasis added).
As an example, one may consider a table. One may think of it as a supporter of paper or as an obstacle in the way of where one wishes to go. Each of these ways of thinking leads one to see the table in a different form of perception, which calls attention to different aspects and in this way gives rise to different motivations as to what to do about the table (either to write on it or push it aside). We thus emphasize that thought and the perceptions that guide action, along with feelings and urges that constitute the motivation of such action, are inseparable aspects of one whole movement, and that to try to regard them as separately existent is a form of fragmentation between the content of thought and its overall function.
To fragment the content of thought from its overall function in the way described above leads to very serious confusion in action and in human relationships in general. For example, the thought of the inferiority of human beings belonging to different nations or ethnic groups and having different customs leads one to see such people as inferior beings and to feel the motivation to treat them in a manner that would be fitting their supposed inferiority. One tends to fall into this sort of confused response because one fails to see the content of thought and its function as an unbroken flow. Rather, one tends first to concentrate exclusively on the content (the notion of the inferiority of people who differ from oneself), which is seen as "merely a thought" and therefore unreal or perhaps "only a mental reality" and therefore not very important. Then, when one experiences the inbuilt function of his thought by "actually seeing" other people as inferior, and by "actually feeling" the urge or motive to treat them as such, he loses sight of the content in which this function originated, and thinks: "This is not just a mental image, but it is something real, something that I see and feel as an actual fact, which is very important and very urgent in its implications." So, it seems that inferiority of these people has been proved and is not a 'mere thought.'"
Scarcity hides in the function of thought the world over and I believe this is the central, fundamental malady of our times. The human ego is always surveying the horizon assessing and projecting threats, and when the context is one of scarcity, "not enough," "never enough," "not good enough" (view of self and others) the result is a world characterized by so much war, suffering, dissatisfaction, and sense of inadequacy. How could it be otherwise with the scarcity meaning being so pervasive? Since the U.S. "won" the Cold War and the demise of the counter-weight of the Soviet Union ideology to capitalist ideology, the world ego is running amuck in a socio-psychopathic orgy. It's every man for himself so I'd better get mine – but quick – and the hell with tomorrow! Nothing else in nature exhibits this fear of scarcity sustained over time we call "greed." Greed is fear of scarcity.
To explode the scarcity belief, and show just how inauthentic and incoherent it is, let's take a look at some objective measures as well as make some informed estimates of global wealth.
After fairly extensive research and query of a leading economist who consults for the U.S. Federal Reserve, New York University's Edward Nathan Wolf, I have not been able to obtain a household balance sheet for total global wealth, so we'll work at generating one. Yet it would seem that the G-8, IMF, World Bank, the Bank of International Settlements, and High Net Worth Individuals must know what net worth is reflected by the system for purposes of banking, investment and currency flows, right? It is mystifying, although in light of my scarcity thesis, not at all surprising, that such numbers are not available to the public because they would give away the fundamental trick.
The US economy represents roughly 25% of global consumption and GNP (Source: CIA). Using the Federal Reserve's Flow of Funds Accounts for the United States (first quarter, 2004), we see that the Balance Sheet of Households and Non-Profit Organizations shows a net worth of $44.87 trillion in 2003, not including the value of primary homes. Today's figure (2006) would easily exceed $50 trillion. While these measures vary somewhat from nation to nation, if we multiply the US figure by 4, the balance sheet for the planet would be $200 trillion. Does that figure include the Oil and Gas Journal in Houston estimate of proven oil reserves of 1.266 trillion barrels of oil? At a price of $72 (the price to which it will return after November 7th) that equals $91.15 trillion, so it hardly seems possible that the figure could be included in global net worth, as that would represent nearly one-half of global wealth. And while I admit that I'm flying blind in this area, let's set aside 50% of that number and add $45 trillion to our $200 trillion, giving us $245 trillion. Let's say there's an equivalent value for all government infrastructure and farms. That's $490 trillion, or $75,384 for every person on the planet, without even attempting to calculate the value of the vast, non-commoditized natural resources, surplus human product, labor, intellectual or spiritual capital, human networks, the black market, off-shore trillions, or the priceless value of the our common inheritance, the physical planet Earth, which is clearly beyond measure. And beyond that still, we have the non-physical which may account for 94% of what is within and without us.
So, what is all this talk about scarcity and what the hell are we doing to ourselves, the world and everything in it?
The scarcity belief is the fundamental trick in system that is enslaving the world and killing the planet; it must be revealed and transcended. Opposing it will not work; it will only make is stronger. The world ego will defend this status quo at all costs because the economic order of the world runs on its fear of scarcity and it fears nothing more than scarcity!
We are addicted to a scarcity fantasy.
Once again, David Bohm from a dialogue in Thought as a System, where he is speaking about addiction to fantasy:
"I would like to discuss the imagination so that we could understand its role here, because it is very closely related to this question. 'Imagination' means 'making an image', 'seeing the image of something that is not there'; in other words, fantasy, fancy, and so on. But really there is no fundamental distinction between the processes of imagination and perception. We've said that the entire consciousness is actually created by a process which is being guided by information and the senses.
That process gives rise to perception, and that process is a kind of imagination...
So the reality you perceive is affected by your thought. Thought is working as a kind of imagination infused into your perception. It becomes part of what you see. And that imagination is necessary. But it gets held too strongly and resists evidence of incoherence, then it leads to all the problems we're talking about...
You can see therefore that you have to watch imagination carefully. It can be creative and it can also be very destructive, because the fantasy realm can merge with reality and create a resistance to seeing that it is fantasy. It will create reflexes that resist seeing it because you create such beautiful fantasies that you don't want to give them up. They feel very good, the endorphins are produced and everything else. Hence, there is a movement -- a reflex -- to hold them and to resist thoughts which say they are not right, or that they are not the way it is. Thus you get illusion and all that..."
Q: What about incoherence due to psychological addiction, but which includes chemical addiction -- such as that of the alcoholic or the drug addict? This too can affect perception.
Bohm: Yes. But psychological addiction is always the most difficult one. For example, experiments have been done where animals were injected with some drug, maybe morphine, which made them chemically addicted. There were two groups -- one was able to inject itself and the other was injected. Then the drug was withheld from both groups. The group that was injected went through a withdrawal process and was no longer addicted. The animals which were able to press the button to inject themselves got through the withdrawal process, but when they saw the button they pressed it again, even though it no longer gave them the drug. The point is that the memory of that pleasure produced a reflex to press the button. The button stirred up the whole system of memory.
Q: Are fantasy and imagination based mostly on past experiences?
Bohm: I have said there are several kinds of imagination. There is the imagination based on memory, which is either remembering the past or projecting the future. In addition, there is creative imagination which can project something new which you can bring into existence -- for example, a new idea to create something which was never there. In fact, a great many things we see are a result of that.
And I'm saying that perception is a process similar to imagination. Now, that is the key thing. But we have no control over it. It just happens. It's going on and creates the whole impression of a world. That world includes not only what we sense -- what we immediately perceive -- but also the effect of the past. Thought is affecting our perception...
Fear breeds fear just as love extends love. So the question becomes: which would we rather have? Fear masks as good judgment, reason, planning, and necessary defense, yet who has populated the world with nuclear weapons and fomented war in recent times more than the most abundant nation on Earth? What nation is leading the advance in turning the garden planet into a tortuous prison plantation of death, destruction and slave wages to serve the elites?
As I write this we are transitioning from the Age of Mechanism to this Age of Infinity, and the Industrial era is sinking into to swamp of anomalies characterized by a desperate rush to privatize global resources before the jig is up. The world ego knows this. This is a huge subject and perhaps will be the focus of a film and book. (If anyone is interested in helping me take this on, please contact me.)
There are many things we can do to bring about change. We can distinguish and awaken to the Scarcity Matrix. We can form a global mutual social enterprise using the assets of our pension funds and stocks to buy control of the banks and corporations (including media, healthcare, arms), take human rights away from corporations and hold them accountable to the community of 6.5 billion This may be possible for as little as $20-30 trillion (a guesstimate of the cost of 10% of public corporations). In so doing, we can repossess our own credit and debt (most central banks like the Fed are owned by private international interests), and restore the commons. We can turn the focus of the arms and national security industries to free energy development, transportation systems, communications and interplanetary enterprises. We can build cathedrals of light with quantum computers, optical switches and intelligent networks as George Gilder foresaw in Telecosm. We can establish a line of credit for every man, woman and child to finance education, businesses and homes using each person's priceless share of the planetary dominion as collateral. And we can begin organizing these movements right now through P2P.
In closing, in an effort to truly grasp the infinite abundance, potential and power of what is within and without us, let's take a closer look at the science. It'll be just a brief glimpse into the nature of our source: light.
First we must begin with the fact that a photon (a quantum of light) is non-material. It is non-physical. It has no rest mass. It has no charge. Yet it can possess infinite power. It can be seen only once: its detection is its annihilation. So our entire universe is birthed from a non-physical entity which is annihilated when observed.
As Arthur M. Young, inventor of the Bell helicopter and physicist/philosopher, states in the first chapter of The Reflexive Universe, "The heart of our story, like the beginning of creation, lies in the nature of light... Light, because it is primary, must be unqualified -- impossible to describe -- because it is antecedent to the contrasts necessary to description...
"Light involves a special kind of difficulty, the difficulty of knowing about that which provides no knowledge of other things. We might imagine a painter who wanted to paint the paintbrush, a problem I encounter when I want to repair my glasses: I cannot see without them; and light, by which we see, cannot be seen."
Light is seeing. Visible light covers just one octave of the electromagnetic spectrum, but as Young tells us, it "includes much more than the energy we see by, for all exchange of energy between atoms and molecules is some form of what used to be called electromagnetic energy, which extends over a vast spectrum and would be better named interaction...
"And, as evidenced by the finding of relativity that clocks stop at the speed of light, it has no time (the space-time path of light has zero length). While light in a vacuum has a 'velocity' of 186,000 miles per second, this velocity is not motion in the ordinary sense since it can have no other value... Even space is a meaningless concept for light, since the passage of light through space is accomplished without any loss of energy whatsoever."
Light is pure action and free. Light is an information carrier, connecting everything with everything else.
Light seems to know its purpose:
Young describes the life cycle of light as the "arc of light," and in so doing shows us how light, as it slows and descends into energy/matter, all physics are born, and subatomic quanta emerge with charge, velocity, mass, and location. As light continues to slow and becomes more and more determined, it gives up energy to form atoms, and then atoms bond into molecules.
Then light does a most miraculous thing, it reverses its descent, makes a U-turn, becomes neg-entropic, and uses the determined state of the molecule as the platform upon which to progressively build life: cells, then plants, animals, and man, each kingdom experiencing a higher degree of freedom than its predecessor. Then light returns to its source.
How does it know to do these things? Oxford physicist Danah Zohar (The Quantum Society) tells us, "Energy seeks to fulfill all its potentials, all at once, in every possible variation." (We have neither the time or space here to take up Young's theories on the photon's cycle of learning or Bohm's views on proto-consciousness, the infinite subtlety of matter, or matter as "a meaning field.") Miraculous insights such as these fill whole volumes; one need only look.
So as we consider the nature of nature and its "purpose" we observe the manner in which the whole manifests. The universe is light, energy/matter. The energy of a photon to create a proton is a billion electron volts, to create an electron about one-half million volts. The universe is held together by forces of attraction: strong and weak nuclear, gravity, electromagnetism. Light transforms itself into these forces of attraction to create all life and make everything new again.
And I would add to these four a fifth: love.
We are made of this same quantumstuff.
So we see a whole new world coming into view: born in light, bonded into matter, it rises back up to create life, then onto higher and higher degrees of freedom and creativity and knowing – and then us, through us, to become. Knowing this to be our heritage and the Earth our collective dominion, we awaken to the nature of what is, become coherent with it, and with the miraculous powers of nature at our finger tips, we realize that we are the masters of our own destiny--and desire to manifest anew. We are at once free to create, to exemplify the whole and consciously evolve its purpose with the infinite abundance of it at our fingertips – now. And we see in the miraculous, malleable mirror of the universe the image of our maker – and ourselves.
William's documentary work has appeared on PBS, A&E, Discovery and CNN. Other projects include the feature length documentary, The Made-for-TV Election with Martin Sheen and the science novel, Lewis Carroll's Lost Quantum Diaries.
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