Extension of the system that includes the key substrates for sensation, perception, emotion, volition, and cognition, and all representational sources for cognition, supports the view that there is an extended mind and an extended body. These intellectual views can be made practical in a humanist system based on extensions and in religious systems based on extensions. Independently, there is also an institutional extension of secularism. Hence, I maintain, there are five principal forms of extension.
Philosophers promoting a version ofUniversal Self Consciousness mysticism(including Wainwright, Alston, Hick, Wilber andForman) take it that their interpretations ofmysticism are consistent with currentscientific findings. However, their theorieshave been implicitly or explicitly against thecentral claim arising from science, namely, thephysical causal completeness principle. Thereis strong ground to accept physical causalcompleteness for human functioning, and theassessment of physical completeness isindependent of the phenomenology of UniversalSelf Consciousness mystical experience.Further, there is a positive account ofUniversal Self Consciousness mysticism thataccepts physical causal completeness. Such anaccount (...) is preferable to the many accounts thatboth require its denial and yet give nobasically satisfactory evidence to ground thatdenial. (shrink)
A model of Zeno's dichotomy paradox is presented in Newtonian collision mechanics. One of several resolutions of the paradox illustrates the point that even in Newtonian ontology there is a spacetime weave. In a Newtonian system in which the base rules permit only spatial contact interactions, we find the mechanical emergence of action-at-a-distance effects.
can prevent non-contact interactions in Newtonian collision mechanics. The proposal is weakened by the apparent arbitrariness of what will be shown as the requirement of only an odd number of sets of some ex nihilo-created self-exciting particles. There is, however, an initial condition such that, without the ex nihilo self-exciting particles, either there is a contradictory outcome, or there is a non-contact configuration law, or there are odds versus evens indeterminacies. With the various odds versus evens arbitrarinesses and other such (...) difficulties, there seems to be an ontological unsatisfactoriness in the speed-unbounded Newtonian collision system. Introduction Taking self-excitations very seriously A problematic initial condition Another alternative. (shrink)
This article reviews the research of “top rebirth scientist” Ian Stevenson on spontaneous past-life memory cases, focusing on three key problems with Stevenson’s work. First, his research of entirely anecdotal case reports contains a number of errors and omissions. Second, like other reincarnation researchers, Stevenson has done no controlled experimental work on such cases; yet only such research could ever resolve whether the correspondences found between a child’s statements and a deceased person’s life exceed what we might find by chance. (...) Finally, the best reincarnation research should at least meet the standards met by typical empirical research, but Stevenson’s methodology does not even meet the standards expected of third- or fourth-year college students. -/- 1. How Controlled Experimental Work is Possible -- 2. The Anecdotal Record - 2.1 Reincarnation and Biology - 2.2 The Imad Elawar Case -- 3. Conclusion. (shrink)
Religious thought often assumes that the principle of physical causal completeness (PCC) is false. But those who explicitly deny or doubt PCC, including William Alston, W. D. Hart, Tim Crane, Paul Moser and David Yandell, Charles Taliaferro, Keith Yandell, Dallas Willard, William Vallicella, Frank Dilley, and, recently, David Chalmers, have ignored not only the explicit but also the implicit grounds for acceptance of PCC. I review the explicit grounds, and extend the hitherto implicit grounds, which together constitute a greater challenge (...) to contemporary religious philosophy than has been realized. Religious philosophers need to find a better way around PCC than has been found, or, if PCC is unavoidable, religious philosophers need to work toward a worldview that both accepts PCC and defends strong forms of religious experience. (shrink)
This paper suggests that an ontologically reductionist view of nature which also accepts the completeness of causality at the level of physics can support (1) the blissful transfiguration of the moral, (2) mystical release from standard ego-identification, and (3) psycho-physical transformation cultivated through meditative practice. This mystical naturalism provides the basis for a thicker, more vigorous institutional religious life, including religious life centred around meditation practices, personalist meanings, and the theology of incarnation, than current proposals for strongly naturalist religions allow.
First, some say that core physicalism is not anti-religion. I argue that this seems to be incorrect. Physical completeness is a core element of contemporary physicalism; (the evidence for physical completeness is strong); and physical completeness both logically and not strictly logically rejects many central religious views. Consequently, there is a sense in which core physicalism is, in an important way, anti-religion. Second, physical completeness positively supports one significant religious view; and physical completeness permits one to hold two others. The (...) view that physical completeness supports states that there is no natural grounding of the ordinarily taken boundary of the human body. The two views that physical completeness permits one to hold state that a person can be contrastlessly blissful in an ongoing way, and that a person can experience something like light circulating through the ordinary body in an ongoing way. It is further maintained that physicalism allows religious systems to develop in new forms. (shrink)
This paper provides evidence from the history of the natural sciences in philosophy (particularly mathematical physics, chemistry, and biology) that a “piloting” soul would have to make physical changes in human beings violating well-established physical laws. But, among other things, it has been discovered that there can be no such changes, and thus that there is no piloting soul. -/- 1. Introduction -- 2. Suitable Restrictions in Physical Theories -- 3. Evidence that Physical Formulas are not Violated -- 4. How (...) the Preservation of Physical Formulas Shows that There is No Afterlife - 4.1 How the Narrow Version Differs from Standard Closure - 4.2 Elucidation of the Tight Argument Against an Afterlife - 4.3 Summary and Final Thought. (shrink)
A model of a new version of Zeno's arrow paradox is presented in a plausible extension of Newtonian collision mechanics. In exploring various avenues for resolution of the paradox, it becomes evident that a prerelativistic classical physical topology which is locally deterministic can mechanically generate nonclassical ontological properties such as the appearance of a particle in many places at once. It can also mimic some properties of quantum physics, including unprepared spatially-separated correlations. 1 Zeno's arrow paradox 2 Newtonian collision mechanics (...) and extensions of it 3 Our initial condition (IC) 4 Demonstrating the model paradox 5 Resolving the paradox 6 Unprepared correlations in spatially-separated events 7 Lessons. (shrink)
LA Universal Self reports his phenomenology, according to which, as he puts it, ‘I am the universe’. The Interviewer challenges the report in a variety of ways, and LA Universal Self responds to each challenge. A traditional Universal Self mysticism is given a new physicalist interpretation.
In ‘Ineffability’ Alston suggests that philosophical mystics take care to delimit the class of predicates which cannot be ascribed to God. It is suggested that some qualification of ‘ineffability’ is necessary lest the mystic be trapped into such simple contradictions as that of ascribing predicates like ‘ineffability’ to God, while denying that any predicates can be ascribed to God. By the end of Alston's dialogue Mysticus, the would-be defender of mysticism, is browbeaten into meekly asking, ‘Yes, I see that [qualifying (...) statements of God's ineffability] would be better. But how does it happen that so many philosphers make ineffability statements without qualification?’. (shrink)