Section II - Chapter 12 -- PATTERNS OF RECOGNITION
Before I proceed to go into detail and explain the idea of consciousness, I want to bring you along a pattern of mental growth that again leads one to end up with the same results that we have just achieved using the logical structure of mathematics. Instead of tangible structures, let's look at the intangible side of our realities. To do this, we must retrace some of our steps through physical reality and our learning process of growth.
Because man is a part of matter, he derives almost all of what he knows about matter through the physical senses. I say almost, because I myself am not sure of other contributions of perhaps other unknown senses that have been speculated about. I find myself trapped like most other people in accepting only what one can identify as real or pertaining to physical reality, even though I know that another reality of spirit must exist because we live in a world based upon separation. In any case, let's take a look at these physical senses and see what we can do to prove the existence of this other world.
Man is said to be endowed with five physical senses, and these are: the sense of sight or seeing, sound or hearing, touch or feeling, taste and smell. Supposedly, all of these senses work or operate in such a fashion that they detect a specific range or limitation of vibration or energy. If we were to possess a sense that would detect heat, then we might be able to use it to see in the dark, just as infra-red devices are used by the military. Infra-red devices use a mechanical system based upon electronic circuits to detect the vibration of heat energy that is emitted by all forms of matter and displays an image similar to that detected by the physical sense of sight. Other electronic devices, such as radar are designed to use sound or energy frequencies to increase the limitations of man's physical senses.
Our knowledge of this reality consists of our reactions to stimulus conveyed to our senses from outside of our physical selves and that knowledge pertains only to the outer surfaces or characteristics of that relationship or matter. That means that you really cannot know anything about an object or an environment itself, only its characteristics and not its inner content. The average person is not taught nor does he understand the internal structures and patterns of matter and its relationship to that of man or our physical outside world, nor does he seem to care. Therefore, our physical reality consists mostly of reactions to a stimulus-response type actions based upon our physical senses to matter and the laws that govern matter.
Again, we are faced with a situation of a pattern(s) or structure(s) with outside limitations. Matter has physical energy limitations; therefore, so does man. Consequently, knowledge as we know it is primarily a form of pattern recognition. That is, the physical senses detect and store information pertaining to the limitations of size, weight, shape, volume, density, color, temperature, sound, smell, taste, etc., and certain laws of probability that allow for changing that which is. Man then uses this knowledge of patterns to accomplish certain tasks or end results, just like the game rock, scissors, and paper. The implication of the knowledge of patterns and the laws of probability are what constitute the building and understanding of relationships, which I spoke of so much earlier in this book. All objects of matter exhibit characteristics that have different limitations or beginnings and endings in relationship to one another.
Interesting enough, while these patterns of limitations seem to be rather simple and a sure fired way of determining just what is and is not in this physical reality, it still has some glitches. That is, there are some inherent problems associated with the physical senses. However simple some things appear to be, they can become complicated should one decide to properly analyze them. We often think in terms of a single action as that which is simple or automatic; however, such simple functions usually involve several distinct actions or commands. Any computer programmer can tell you that to get from point A to point B, as we tried to start out in the beginning of this book we discovered it is a complicated task which is dependent upon what the individual wishes to experience. That is, to get from A to B, must involve at least six or more functions which involves an action to start, motion to move, balance, attention to one's environment for obstacles and to increase or decrease the use of energy, the relationship of matter to affect one's progress, and an evaluation when to stop. Simple, right?
However simple, simple things are, we take almost everything we do for granted. In fact, we really don't want to know what all is involved. We simply want to get or do something. We don't want to think about everything along the way. We are only concerned, or usually concerned, with the end result. This whole series of activities which are used to complete a single task becomes a form of pattern recognition and therefore becomes instinctive or intuitional. It is no longer a series, but becomes a group task or system known as a program or routine, if you will. Therefore, as a natural outgrowth or form of progression, we become unconscious to the actual mechanics or steps involved in the action(s) or routines, unless something unusual happens to interfere with the accomplishment of the task that is not normally expected.
In a routine, most of the resistance of matter and/or the action has been removed to overcome or make the function automatic or subconscious. Also, as stated, this pattern recognition leads to a form of unconsciousness sub-consciousness. Therefore, the limitations of physical matter are overcome and/or this information is stored in another form of resistance known as the routine or a programmed structure of thought. We are no longer dealing with physical matter resistance, but with units of thought that form a kind of resistance of its own. Remember, thought is but another form of energy, vibrating at a higher level than that of physical matter. Therefore, anything that holds, restricts, or limits anything else, must contain some form of resistance.
Before we get into intangible forms of resistance, let's get back to the problem of the physical senses. What can possibly go wrong with the physical senses, you say. Well, not much if you know how to use them properly in relationship to the laws of probability. What I am saying here, is that sometimes the physical senses can fail to convey the proper truth about an object or that which is, and it requires more than the physical senses to distinguish differences in an initial outward appearance and that which actually is. In this case, we are primarily talking about objects based on or made from physical matter. To get a proper, unbiased idea of what I am talking about, which is next to impossible, let's make up a hypothetical example of the senses conveying the wrong information about physical matter.
Because it is difficult to get away from biased thought forms, I must resort to an exaggerated condition that may not be believable; however, it is the best I can do for now. Let's say, that we are a person who has been blind from birth and is at least twenty years old. All of a sudden, from some freak accident of nature, we acquire our sight. Here we are with a completely new sense by which to detect or receive knowledge about the outside physical world. Besides the sudden shock and the revising of certain specific reliance upon the other senses and their relationship with the individual, we find the new sense so overpowering that it may in fact interfere with our ability to cope with our old environment and our other senses. More than likely, this will only be a temporary problem; however, let's try to anticipate what some of these problems might be.
Probably one of the first problems we might struggle with is the problem of perspective. That is, because we have never been able to see before, and we have quite a lot of knowledge of the outside world stored in our memory based upon sound and touch; that knowledge does not immediately relate to sight. Therefore, it might be possible that initially we may not be able to distinguish objects in a distance from those close up, or we may possibly think that those objects in a distance are actually smaller than those close up. It might even be possible that we might think that the world or object ceases to exist as they approach the horizon. I seriously doubt that we may think things shrink when we walk away from them, but it may just puzzle us a little bit at first.
Even if we were not blind from birth, we still have other problems of sight that need special attention because they can be confusing. Here I am talking about the problem of heat rising from a hot pavement or other forms of matter. In this case, such conditions can completely obscure or hide an image of an oncoming car or some other obstacle in the area of the heat waves. We also have the problem of water and liquids which have the ability to magnify objects to make them appear bigger than their actual size when viewed from outside of water. Then, as we are putting an object into a clear glass of water, for whatever reason, we have to be careful about how we look into the container so that we do not get a distorted view that can make the image of the object appear to bend. So you see (pun on words there), you don't have to be blind to have trouble with the physical sense of sight. In these situations, sight can be deceiving. It takes the intangible knowledge of refraction of light through medias and/or enough familiarity with heat and water and their relationship to other forms of matter to correct this false visual appearance of that which is.
There are a number of other tests and artwork designed to confuse the sense of sight using perspective shading and colors to deceive the eyes, or convey multiple contradictory images. Some of these tests are used to detect color blindness; others are simply designed to convey wrong impressions or act as a security code. We call such impressions, illusions; however, this word is usually used to notate something that really doesn't exist. The fact is, the eyes convey what it is seeing, but the mind knows that the input is not correct and either switches to other senses for additional data, or just ignores the information as not valid or false.
I suppose that if we were also deaf and blind for twenty or more years, we would also have a little difficulty with sound too. Maybe even more so than sight, because sound is affected by more conditions of temperature and water than is light. Our hypothetic person probably have more difficulty understanding or detecting sound in a distance to its corresponding light image, versus that in a water environment. If this person were to go into a soundproofed, insulated room with baffles, he would find the quality of sound quite different from that of a bare solid steel room. What I am saying here is that it takes a lot more knowledge of other laws governing sound than it does sight, but both sound and sight are affected by its environment or its relationship to other forms of matter.
We can go on and on citing some of the examples where the human senses can be deceived. Some of the most classic examples are: The illusion of striking a match in front of a person and then pretending to touch him on the back of the neck with a piece of ice. It will take a short time to distinguish the difference, but our victim will more likely than not swear that he was burned by the match rather than touched with a piece of ice. Another classic is to blindfold a person and ask him to bite into a piece of apple, but don't tell him it is an apple, and then put a raw union under his nose as he bites the apple. Again, the first reaction of the individual is to say that he is eating an onion.
So what have we just accomplished or proved? Well, I have really tried to show you that the human senses are subject to error and/or can convey false impressions to the mind. The senses can be deceived. What we have proved is that the senses are imperfect or are capable of error. This is the same argument that philosophy students are taught in their pursuit to find truth and a basis for right and wrong. The next thing that they are taught is that if the senses can be deceived and capable of error, perhaps there is a better way to discovering what is truth or what something really is, other than using the senses. Consequently, in trying to come up with a way to prove what is really true, right or wrong, they have taken several patterns or standards of limitations by which to gauge and measure actions.
Although we are primarily concerned here with a physical way of determining our reality of what is and is not, we are also interested with establishing a guide for morality. So what better opportunity do we have to review other forms of pattern recognition and behavior modes, than this argument? This is a sneaky way of saying that reality cannot be solely determined by using the physical senses. Therefore, I think we can combine our efforts here to correct or justify our search for, "Who am I?", and our reality. That is, at this point, we have pretty well determined that to discover who we are and what our reality has to do with all of this is a matter that involves mental thought which is of an intangible nature and that means that we must use our knowledge of relationships in a mental state. But, before we do that, we still must eliminate a lot of confusion about ourselves and the outside world. Therefore, in order to do this, I suggest we review other forms of thought known as philosophy that have been used and accepted through the years by man to control and direct his life.
The history of civilized man can be said to be a continuous search to discover truth and/or the good and proper life. However, truth in and by itself, is meaningless unless it is related to another body of thought. Truth represents a means to an end, a virtue to be pursued and it implies more than one possibility because of the laws of separation and opposites. Therefore, the justification of truth becomes a matter to be resolved. Man, being the ingenious creature he is, has established ways and means to approve and disapprove of these patterns or standards. Hence, moral philosophical standards for determining right and wrong came into existence to justify or govern behavior.
Put in proper prospective, the church was the most dominate force that was used to guide man in his pursuit of a good justified existence. Therefore, the most common and popular standard used to determine truth, right, and wrong, was the theological standard. The main premise of this standard is that whatever God wills, is so. This is the doctrine's main premise. There are other supportive standards; however, all of these still require someone to interpret matters of conflicting interests. Naturally, I am over simplifying things; however, it is still a matter of human interpretation, which is also known as the authoritarian standard which was used by great kings and queens, emperors, and other types of totalitarian rulers of old. The only difference between these two standards is the source of the supposed standard, but interpretations are dispersed in the same manner.
In trying to prove the validity of the theological standard, one also encounters some additional difficulties. God is an amoral deity and should therefore be incapable of making moral standards. God could not be right or wrong, nor can he change anything which is considered right or wrong, because he is perfect. He does not make mistakes. That means, that if God were capable of determining right or wrong, which he cannot, there could not be any right or wrong until he commands it. Again, if he commands it, or changes anything, then he would be admitting he is imperfect, which does not fit the definition of God. Then again, if God could determine right and wrong, then he must have some sort of standard that is either understandable to humans or not. If it were understandable, there would be no need to appeal to God or the theological standard. If it were not understandable, how could anyone know God's will? It would be irrational for a human to know God's will; therefore, how could there be a standard? The theological standard must be assumed. To show right or wrong, one must already know what right and wrong is, and this is illogical.
Another basis for a moral standard is to appeal to one's own conscious. In this case, right and wrong are determined in the minds of each individual. Basically, this would be governed or controlled by an emotional response of feeling good or guilty on the part of the individual in regards to some form of action and he would avoid certain actions and seek out others. However, this allows each individual to determine his own right and wrong. But suppose there are two or more people who disagree on the proper action or what is right in a matter that involves more than one person? How would such an action be deemed either right or wrong? Who or what is to make the final decision?
Another problem associated with the appealing to one's own conscious is that such a standard assumes consciousness before an action. In our physical reality, there is little proof that this is so; in fact, the reverse situation seems to be more prevalent thought because our reality is based on a cause and effect relationship. An emotional feeling normally follows an action, not precede it. Therefore, the main premise of this standard would also be incorrect. Again, there is no way to prove or determine which individual was right or wrong in a case of conflicting interests. A system or standard based upon this premise might bring such a society more chaos than stability.
Perhaps one favorable standard is the appeal to customs and traditions which I discussed some time ago. In such a case, justification for right and wrong is based upon and determined by what has been commonly accepted as right or wrong in the past. With such a standard for guidelines, one knows before an action is taken, whether or not it is right. The only difficulty with this standard is how to resolve right or wrong when conflicting customs, traditions, or societies, come together. Such a standard is also somewhat rigid and may not cover all possibilities. That is, what happens when a question arises which has never happened before, or what happens when a custom or tradition changes? One cannot prove if an action is right because it is customary, or if it is customary therefore it is right.
The appeal to nature is yet another basis for a moral standard. However, in this case, one must first choose from at least two principle meanings of the word; then, which meaning of nature to appeal to and follow. In one sense, it means all the powers existing in both the outer or inner worlds and everything which takes place by means of those powers. In another sense, it means not everything that happens, but only that which takes place without man, or the conscious or subconscious actions of man. In the first meaning, Nature is a collective name for everything which is and is not. In the second case, it is a name for everything which is of itself, or what it ought to be.
The reason that makes nature attractive as a moral standard also makes it unattractive. To do what is natural and to follow the examples of nature is attractive. However, nature, in the first sense, means nothing to man; because, man has no power to do anything else but to follow nature. That is, all of man's actions are done through and in obedience to nature's physical and/or mental laws. Man is but an extension of nature in this case. In the second case or definition of nature, the belief that man ought to make or follow the actions of things and creatures of nature is also irrational and immoral. It is irrational because all human actions whatsoever consists of altering, changing or improving upon the spontaneity of nature for his benefit. It is equally immoral, because anyone who endeavors to imitate the natural course of things whenever and however he felt the urge would be accused of being one of the wicked of men in his society.
As far as my knowledge goes, all moral standards attempt to describe what is, or they try to establish a basis for right and wrong on an absolute condition or rule. Even the laws of nature don't do that. You would think that by now, man has learned something here on earth. Moral rules are exception less and supposedly designed for universal applications regardless of circumstances. You would think that by now, everyone would know that moral rules conflict with one another and cannot be proven unless an artificial authoritarian source can be endowed with the power to make those decisions. This is also our case of might makes right; however, being civilized, we would naturally be giving up our own rights in the interests or benefit of all mankind. Just remember, man is considered imperfect and limited; therefore, it is impossible to have a situation of no exceptions in a world based upon separation. Therefore, it is impossible to have moral rules, because no moral standard based upon rules can be proven to exist without laws allowing for change.
To establish a standard for determining right and wrong, one must avoid an absolute condition in order to avoid conflicting rules. A moral standard must be relative to customs, traditions and circumstances, and be capable of being understood and known to all so that everyone would know what to avoid and be allowed to pursue that which is believed good. Unlike rules, principles are general in character and do not tend to conflict with one another like rules. They do not admit to exceptions, but do vary independently with one's actions. Hence, if we are to have a standard, it must be based upon a principle rather than a rule.
Perhaps one of the best well known and received principles is that of utility, otherwise known and called, "The Greatest Happiness Principle". Its popularity stems from its relative simplicity. Basically, the principle believes that nature has placed man under the dominance of two forces. One is that of pleasure, and the other is that of pain. Nothing can act in and by itself as a motive for man but the thought of pleasure and pain. To deny this force will only demonstrate and confirm it.
Supposedly, every action is approved or disapproved in accordance to the happiness of the party whose interests are in question. When the interests of many are in question, that which is right becomes the sum total of those whose interests are in question. Therefore, right would be that which brings the greatest happiness to the greatest number of people. In this situation, or standard, everyone is obligated to perform that act which results in the greatest total balance of pleasure over pain in the long run or foreseeable future.
One of the problems associated with this standard is the collective collaboration to inflict pain, suffering or hardship on other minorities of people. Supposedly, the association of the word pleasure assumes a position or condition of good or intended good doings even if it inflicts hardship on a minority. There are other principles and motives for moral standards that reason why an act has been done, but it is only this principle of utility that reasons why an action might have been taken to begin with.
Besides the logic of the principle, one must also explain the value of pleasure and pain and also how to measure it. In this case, pleasure is the end result which the principle advocates. It is the instrument and its force which determines right or wrong. The value of whether an action is right or wrong will be determined according to four circumstances; the intensity of the pain or pleasure, its duration or length of time it lasts, its certainty or uncertainty of its becoming a possession, and its frequency of its coming into one's possession.
There are two other circumstances to be taken into account when the value is a property of an act or event by which pleasure or pain has been produced. These factors are: the ability of the event to be productive or its chance of it being followed by sensations of the same kind, and secondly, its purity or chance that the event will not be followed by sensations of the opposite kind. Because these last two conditions are not properties of pleasure or pain itself, they should not be considered a value of pleasure or pain itself but may be thought of or used as a means to an end.
The greatest happiness principle is logically sound. It has no major faults, but it can become involved with a question of semantics and it can have opposing right and wrong within the same community on a specific action; however, the overall premise is good. It is not too unlike the democratic process based upon the rule of the majority. The biggest problem lies in the interpretation of explaining the values of pleasure or pain. As a principle, it is general in character and universal in application. I will reserve further comments until we have reviewed some of the other principles that can be used to determine and control behavior and will come back to this same principle in a slightly altered form later on in this book.
The principle of asceticism is almost opposite that of utility. This principle has a tendency to diminish the happiness of an individual and allows or approves of every action only in a direction of decreasing one's happiness. The premise of this principle is based upon the idea of self denial and self discipline. A kind of punishment possibly based upon the concept of original sin, where the individual assumes the posture or position of being unworthy of any form of pleasure or material gains and a servant of an unmerciful, vindictive God, if you will. This principle does not allow for any way to regain happiness; however, I believe the principle assumes that prior to an action, one is happy and either the action reinforces that happiness or takes away from it. Naturally, you can see that I do not fully understand this principle nor do I believe it to be a serious consideration on anyone else's part either. But it does oppose the greatest happiness principle, and that is why I include it.
The principle of sympathy and antipathy is similar to the greatest happiness principle; however, this is not by design. This principle approves or disapproves of certain actions, not because it adds or subtracts from one's happiness, but merely because it must set a precedence or guidelines for others to follow. There are no sufficient grounds or reasons for this principle, only a matter of expediency. Consequently, when enforcing this principle, one is apt to err on the side of severity. Basically, this principle is based on one's emotional feelings and/or those who are the leaders of that group or society, or those who are given authoritative control. Therefore, the guidelines depend upon who is in control of presiding over that community. If one hates little, he punishes little. If one hates much, he punishes much. If one hates not at all, punish not at all.
Antipathy has often been considered just grounds for action, because it composes parts of governing systems that are in existence today. Antipathy can be the cause of an action which is intended to produce good, but this does not make antipathy a right ground for action. Antipathy can never be a right ground for action, no more than can resentment, which is nothing more than a modified pattern of an appeal to nature or what is natural.
So, where do we go from here? Logic tells us that what makes a moral principle attractive as a standard also makes it unattractive. That's because moral principles are not solely dependent upon the nature or class of an action, but are characteristic of something else and can vary independently of that action. Therefore, a moral judgment based on a principle is not judged only on an action, but is a reaction to an action and its relationship to that particular society or group. Consequently, one can have an action considered wrong at one time and right the next time, or it is also possible to have two different people do the same thing and have one person's act declared right and the other person's act declared wrong. That's because beliefs of a society, affect the outcome of a moral judgment based upon a principle.
The problem of this kind of flexibility is that few, if anyone really knows what is right or wrong at any given time. In order to have a stable society, one must be aware of the guidelines or rules of that society. Even if everyone should agree upon a moral principle, is that still a good basis for an action to be either right or wrong? History has proven on many occasions that this thought is not always correct. Remember our example or definition of good and bad and its relationship to that of Adolf Hitler's idea to purify the human race by exterminating the Jews.
So, here we are. Back where we started. We have reached a point using our outside physical senses and mental powers to try to achieve some absolute condition to determine right and wrong. In each case, of all known possibilities to this author, there is no sure way to come up with a reasonable standard to determine right or wrong beyond all doubt. We have come close, but no cigar! If we were a hermit and lived by ourselves with no contact with other humans, anyone of these standards might have worked and be justified. That is because; we are the controlling force that makes it work. In a society or culture, many interests conflict with one another; therefore, it is in everyone's best interest to achieve a good, fair and workable form of moral behavior guidelines, or standards. However, in our explanation of our physical reality, we know that we exist in a form of separation and this relationship is reflected in many tangible and intangible patterns and thought forms.
Although no moral standard can be proven, one must exist, if we are to function as a society or group. To deny the existence of a standard would be totally false. However, what would be the basis of such a standard? Perhaps this problem or absence of a reasonable answer is the problem facing our legal judicial system today? Perhaps what is right is might, or at least whoever is in control of our appointed institutions. As in the case of our physical senses maybe our mental abilities can also be deceived. Maybe nothing really exists at all! But if that were the case, then I wouldn't be writing this book nor would I be concerned with the problem of morality. A chain of proof or starting point must commence somewhere. Yet, it would be wrong not to admit to anything as true which one cannot, after sufficient reflection, doubt that what one senses is not in fact, true. You see, nothing really is, but it has to be. That is, nothing can be absolutely proven to exist, yet at the same time, no one doubts that it does not exist. Existence is a relative thing that seems to grow out of human necessity, but could possible exist in another state of consciousness.
Let me explain that confusing paragraph another way. Let me take you back to classic times in Greece's Golden Age and to one of the great founders or foundations of modern Philosophy, Rene Descartes. The story of Descartes is interesting in itself, but I am more interested in his thought process which seems to answer our problem above. Rene grew up in a period of unrest and confusion among learned men of his time. Sounds familiar? Anyway, he didn't know who was right and who was wrong. So he set out on his own to determine right and wrong for himself. What he ended up with, is something entirely different. Descartes' thinking is quite simple and yet is quite profound.
To begin with, Rene had as many doubts about the outside world as perhaps you and I. In any case, he too arrived at the fact that the physical senses were deceptive; therefore, he relied upon his mind as the basis of discovering the truth about himself and the world. To discover what was really true, he then ruled out all knowledge of the outside world that he had learned from other human sources and empirical knowledge. Lastly, he tried to eliminate all knowledge and/or information derived from dreaming. From his logical process of elimination and rejecting of all knowledge and information about the outside world, he could still reason that in fact, he was able to reason or think; therefore, this desire to reduce himself to nothing, ending in something. This was the only thing that could be proven beyond any shadow of doubt. This truth, "I think, therefore I am", was so firm and sure that everyone could accept it, and it still stands today. No one can deny it as being absolutely true and beyond a doubt.
Looking at this statement in a little more detail, Rene rationalized that he could imagine that he had no body, and that there was neither a world nor any place that was tangible where he could reside, but he could not imagine for any moment that he did not exist. (To be completely and properly rational on the part of the reader, insert "I" in place of the underlined "he".). Just the mere fact of doubting indicates that I am something and that I must exist. He also concluded that he was a substance whose whole essence or nature was only to think, and which to exist, needed no space or material things; therefore, this person, who I am, this ego, this soul, by which I am what I am, is entirely distinct from that of my body. That also means that to think, I must also exist. I think; therefore, I must be something.
From this premise of I am something that thinks, Rene, expanded his thought to the mere act of questioning. After contemplating that he had doubts, he concluded that he must be imperfect. Because to know was a greater perfection than to doubt (Here we are dealing with opposites and separation again.). But from something that was imperfect, meaning himself, from where did this thought of perfection come? Naturally, it must come from something more perfect than himself. This thought of perfection could not come from nothing or himself because he was imperfect. The only hypothesis left was that this idea was put in his mind by something that was more perfect than he and this thought was truth, or in one word, God. To this truth, he added that God knew of the imperfection or separation of man and provided for a means of communicating recognition of needs, wants, hopes, desires, thoughts, etc. Therefore, he, or man, acquired all that he possessed from God by a relationship or through use and understanding of what I call the learning triangle.
Therefore, our physical reality grew out of necessity and limitations. That is, this reality is based upon perfections bestowed upon that which is and is reflected back to the receiver. (The recognizer, recognizes that which is, with recognition). Consequently, truth is a reflection that does not reflect doubt or imperfection. All those things which we conceive very clearly and very distinctly are true and is known to be true only because God exists and because he is perfect and because everything in us and around us comes from God. Any confusion or doubt about our reality must come from ourselves, because we are imperfect, not God. Therefore, it is evident that all truth and reality comes from within us and comes from a perfect and infinite being. However, we should never allow ourselves to be convinced about what is true except on the evidence of our inner intangible reason, not our imagination or our physical senses. For reason does not insist that all we see or visualize truth, but it does insist that all our notions or ideas must have some foundation in truth. For it would be impossible that God, who is perfect and truth would otherwise have given them to us.
From unity to separation to unity we return from whence we came. We are from one, we are of one, we receive from one, and we give to one, in a multi-dimensional manner. Yet, we are more than the sum of one's parts. We are past, present and future. We are, we were, and we will be. The selection and choice is of our own and his guidance. Pardon my rhetoric. I guess I got a little carried away. But the thought of unity is truly beautiful.
In case you are unaware of it, I have inserted some of my own thoughts to clarify that which Rene Descartes does so well on his own in describing reality. My comments were few, so as to leave Descartes' thought patterns intact, or as near to it as possible. There is a specific area which I wish to bring to your attention that I believe could be improved upon; however, I did not want to take away from, or break Rene's logical reasoning process and/or have his thoughts misinterpreted for perhaps something that I am responsible for. Rene Descartes was a master and should be treated and respected as such. What I have done is to try to relate something that he wrote to something I wrote.
The area that I wish to address in more detail is his use of the word doubt to describe imperfection. In his explanation, he used this word basically to denote a form of limitation which was treated similar to that of a negative statement or response and not a desirable quality of human beings. If I am wrong in my interpretation, I stand to be corrected. However, if I am right, I don't think that changes the quality of his logical thought process either. That is, limitations, while being restrictive and/or a sign of imperfection are neither good nor bad in themselves. While it affects and limits man, it also forces or directs him in his growth process to pursue his return to unity. By creating barriers, man is encouraged to seek out and use his knowledge of both the physical and spiritual worlds for his expansion and growth in the direction of harmony and unity.
The reason for so much conflict and unrest in man is due to his inability to remain conscious of who and what he is. Consequently, man does not allow selection for those patterns or forces that work in a favorable relationship to unity. It is only when man works against the forces and patterns of energy that these barriers of limitation create experiences or physical sensations of pain, suffering, or sorrow. It is man's state of separation that motivates and directs him and matter to try to achieve a state of unity. That is, man unconsciously seeks to re-balance the forces of nature or matter to achieve a state of equilibrium or balance. This is similar to the principle of electrical charges and/or pressures; however, most of this selection process is based upon a super conscious state of non-linear reality to which most people are not conscious. We will get back to this later.
One of the most important things that you could have learned from all of the preceding is that you should and must question the obvious, instead of accepting that which is, or appears to be. Just like Rene Descartes. There are no experts or super knowledgeable people to whom you must honor or respect unless you feel that to be true or right from within you to respect that person with some form of recognition. There is no such thing as an expert, just as there is no such thing as the word best. What is it that you wish to experience? Do not be fooled by credentials of supposedly higher learning. Remember, you exist out of a world of unity but live in the two worlds of physical reality and spiritual reality. Half of all the information you get about your world comes from within. The other half comes in the form of outside appearance and limitations. Therefore, by questioning, or learning how to question, you are in a sense regaining knowledge lost to you through a state of matter and resistance. In learning how to question, you are regaining the element of control and are therefore laying a new conscious foundation for a new reality of your own choosing. Not a reality chosen for you by somebody else.
Environmental conditions may exert forces of energy that control one's behavior, but it need not dominate one's life to a point of subservience to others. Balance is important in life, and complete obedience, or extremes without exercising a form of recognition to the element of control or the will of others is not conducive to either growth or creativity. Therefore, questioning provides the means for adjustments and changing relationships or patterns, as well as communicating the understanding of one's position in regards to the artificial element that maybe controlled by others. In a sense, it defines the meaning of the authoritative sources and forces in relationship to your being. Questioning provides an outlet of creative growth within the confines of a particular controlled environment and lays a foundation for the natural progression for that element of control, by providing or referencing a position or relationship of the control factor and you. In short, by questioning, one is clarifying or indicating where the element of control is or should be in relationship to himself and/or others.
There is one last thing that I want to say about questioning before we move on to the world of intangible thoughts. It is interesting to note that the ancient's understanding of the word, doubt, stems from the word double and the number two, which we explained earlier. Anyway, the ancients defined the word doubt as the splitting of unity. That means that doubt is a position of separation and identification and that occupies the point or element known as knowledge in our learning triangle. That also means that the purpose of questioning is to seek, hunt, separate, and pursue a new point or position of understanding in relationship to the limiting extremes and opposites of that which is unity. Basically, we are talking about being consciously aware of how all of the separate parts add up and equal the whole, or possess unity. This is the whole purpose of the learning triangle and the understanding of balance and the positioning process. Questioning, opens up a line of communication that requires an understanding of points or positions in relationship to all those involved in the learning experience.
Questioning makes one seek an understanding of the relationship of yourself, your environment, and the desired end result or unity of purpose. The sheer act of questioning makes one consciously aware of one's state of being (position) at that particular time. Therefore, the ideal situation is to become totally conscious at all times. That doesn't necessarily mean that you need someone else with you or present at all times, it only means that you require an inquisitive mind that seeks the answers that can only come from within or exist in another state of non-linear consciousness.
Each and every action should require the conscious understanding of the relationship of energy and resistance or the state of separation and opposites, in order to accomplish a positive creative form of action. This knowledge and consciousness is necessary because there is also the law of cause and effect that is the dominate force in the world of physical matter and it is this force which is set into motion when any action is taken on the part of any form of physical matter, be it living or non-living. Therefore, the conscious knowledge of separation and unity would be beneficial to everyone involved, and questioning helps bridge that gap to understanding the use of these energy forces and patterns and this in turn help us grow in the direction of unity.
I think that you should also be aware or cautious of all answers that are final. That is, growth is a constant sequential series of beginnings and endings that change or sets up new relationships that are constantly in motion, forming and reforming. This causes a form of growth and/or change of direction. That means that an answer that works today, may not be acceptable sometime in the near future. We are again primarily concerned with the reality of moral behavior standards. Again, you must look for the answers within. To accept ready made answers handed down by others is to cut off your conscious mind, even while you are supposedly awake. The answer may or may not be right, but if you don't understand why, then you are not doing yourself or anyone else any good. Questioning brings you closer to unity. Acceptance is, in a sense, the giving away of your self control or control point. You make your own reality. If you want to give it away, it is your business. But then, you do not or should not complain about a situation or condition that you have accepted. Again, you should learn to recognize patterns and relationships of understanding. Questioning is the means to re-balance a condition of separation or extremes. It is also a way to regain control of your conscious being or focus point.
Earlier in this chapter, we talked about various patterns of recognition which do not use the physical senses as the main element for determining what is. We also reviewed a number of standards used to determine right and wrong, and/or truth that could be proven beyond a shadow of a doubt. In this latter review, I believe, everyone could relate in some way to each and every standard that we discussed; however, we also discovered that no one standard could be completely proven and accepted as absolute or certain. Instead of finding that full proof standard, we found that truth and reality are only relative to the individual and God, which are the only two things that can be proven.
We have proven that our reality is a truth conveyed to man, through his ability to recognize certain patterns of limitations by consciously focusing in on these outer limitations through his physical senses and to mentally define these patterns. Again, man (the recognizer) recognizes physical manifestations with the recognition and knowledge that they really exist by limiting himself to predetermined levels of energy or conscious understanding of truth bestowed on man from within; therefore, reality is a relationship of one limiting himself to an environment and social order, which is a form of pattern recognition.
Section II - Chapter 12 -- PATTERNS OF RECOGNITION