I’ve been making some good progress on my opus work called Spiritual Science. Here’s a summary of the first twelve chapters as they stand so far, along with a brief summary of each of the last three parts of the book. If you want to read more, check out the chapter drafts here – I’d love your feedback!
א – The Destruction of Human Nobility
Chapter 1 – Rumors of Glory
The combined forces of Christianity, European colonialism, the Industrial Revolution, psychology, Marxism, Critical Theory, and postmodernism have all contributed to the degradation of human beings in the current era. All of these culprits have confused the West’s metaphysics to the point of incoherence, threatening the entire utopian project that has been in progress since Plato’s Republic.
Chapter 2 – Original Sin
One of the first bad influences on Western metaphysics is Christianity, which, after 1500 years of violence against the Jewish people which has only recently abated, is demonstrably appropriated – poorly – from Jewish scriptures and fails on its own faith claims with no reference to external science required. In particular, the Christian doctrine of “original sin” frames humanity as irreparably broken and sinful, which has influenced countless centuries of parenting, education, pastoral care, and intellectual exploration.
Chapter 3 – The Map is Not the Territory
As noted by anthropologist James C. Scott in his book Seeing Like a State, the purveyors of European statecraft tend to simplify reality down to a single variable, such as the yield of timber available in a forest. Optimizing for that one variable results in short-term solutions that break down due to environmental complexities that are often ignored or denied by bureaucrats. When played out across Western education, and in context of the industrial revolution and urbanization, the effects have been a catastrophe for the human race.
Chapter 4 – A War on Reality
The demographic of Western society known generally as “the left” have recognized the deep problems inherent in colonial-industrial society, yet have divorced themselves from reality by way of postmodernist and Marxist thought instead of engaging with it. The response to industrialization and colonization has been just as catastrophic, corrupting young minds with abstract ideas about oppression, grievances, and other core values.
Chapter 5 – Operation Mindcrime
Although it has many bright points, most notably the work of Abraham Maslow, psychology is largely a barbaric pseudoscience that has not yet bothered to understand the human condition. Overfocused on issues of trauma and recovery, psychology remains blind to the incredible potential possessed by each human being, and several decades ago became corrupted by postmodernist and Marxist forces. This has resulted in false ideas about homosexuality, transgenderism, and other core aspects of the human condition being propagated into the public sphere as fact, corrupting generations of children.
Chapter 6 – Idols, Isms, Ideologies
While the problems being encountered by the modern West may seem complex and novel, they are, in fact, recurring human issues that many societies have encountered. Nietzsche correctly intuited that many Christian values held as sacrosanct by the West were like idols, a Biblical concept with deep resonances in Jewish literature. For example, the idols of ancient times demanded sacrifices, often of innocent people such as children, a close parallel to today’s practices of gender-affirming care, “born this way” sex education, and even some pediatric practices considered standard by the colonized West. It would seem, then, that the various ideologies and isms followed by various demographics within Western society may, in fact, be religious in nature and therefore deeply problematic.
ב – Rebuilding the Person
Chapter 7 – First Principles & Boundary Conditions
In order to solve the West’s problems and prevent them from happening again, it must be recognized that the laws of physics, as they manifest in biological and human systems, are as unforgiving as gravity. Moreover, if one takes a consilience-based approach, looking to where different approaches from different fields agree on the same issue, it is possible to develop an understanding of the social sciences that is grounded in neuroscience, evolutionary biology, and even physics. This allows for the identification and elucidation of many crucial “natural laws” that govern human development and behavior.
Chapter 8 – Time & Motion
By first considering that human life – and all life – takes place within the limitations imposed by time, one can develop an initial understanding of life as a process that moves organisms towards complexity, utility, and sophistication over time. This is done by way of information, which living creatures must acquire from their environment to maintain preferable states and avoid bad outcomes. Humans, in particular, have an extraordinary thirst for information that manifests in a great deal of exploration activity.
Chapter 9 – An Ever-Finer Quality
A consensus among neuroscientists – and many other researchers – is that humans develop mental models of their environment and surroundings, which are then updated with sensory information to more closely match what is actually happening. Karl Friston’s groundbreaking – and controversial – free energy principle states that organisms must minimize surprise as a computationally-efficient proxy for computing all of reality, implying that it is the new information that counts most during development and life.
Chapter 10 – Maps of Meaning
While Friston’s theories are still hotly-debated, a strong point of consilience is documented by the Soviet neuropsychologists heavily featured in Jordan B. Peterson’s Maps of Meaning. Sokolov and other researchers in the Soviet tradition documented what they described as the orienting reflex, or the reflexive, preconscious, and unavoidable tendency of humans and animals to pay attention to anomalies in their environment. When these phenomena are further contextualized within the literature, it becomes clear that the brain’s sense of intuition is, in fact, a form of preconscious and often nonverbal reasoning that is one of the first responses to anomalies and surprises.
Chapter 11 – More Precious Than Rubies
The longer-term trajectories of human development are just as interesting as short-term responses to anomalies or surprises. Research demonstrates that given enough environmental input and enough time, humans tend to develop along a continuum of psychological sophistication that, at its higher ends, closely resembles wisdom. Additionally, the work of expertise researchers who study athletes, pilots, and chess grandmasters indicates that the common mechanism of development in all of these cases is the interaction with anomaly, revealing a strong area of consilience with the previous chapters.
Chapter 12 – Mechanisms of Human Development
Educational psychologists such as David A. Kolb and Jack Mezirow offer valuable insights into how humans actually process and grow from new information. In an influential book called Experiential Learning, Kolb describes a four-stage cycle whereby humans have an experience, reflect on that experience, contextualize it within their mental model, and then experiment through action to get more feedback. Mezirow deepens this insight in the context of profound personal growth and perspective transformation by identifying that significant anomalies, such as challenges in one’s life or one’s career, spark a process of self-assessment, an admission that growth is necessary, and finally a process of growth and transformation. The emphasis on a challenge that cannot be solved within one’s current understanding of the world, and the conscious admission of such an event, is a further point of consilience with life’s need for information.
Chapter 13 – Trauma, Stagnation, Possession
Chapter 14 – Mystic Rhythms & Psychotechnologies
Chapter 15 – Eigenvalues of Individual Psychology
Chapter 16 – Mind, Self, Soul, Integrity
Chapter 17 – Towards Maslow’s Fourth Force
ג – Rebuilding the World
Building on the previous section, this will expand the domain of concern to groups, organizations, and societies, grounding their behavior within the laws of physics, establishing common attractor states such as idolatry, etc…
ד – The Pillars of Creation
The scientific worldview, built on pillars of evolution and early-universe physics, is significantly shakier than advertised. Moreover, the Egyptian dynastic chronology is grievously mistaken and is hiding evidence for the Biblical Exodus as-written. The case for and implications of this will be explored here.
ה – Homo Divinus
The domain of aesthetics, long considered to be subjective, will be grounded in physics, biology, and Abraham Maslow’s investigations into high-performing human beings he called “peakers”. In light of the Biblical claims previously made, the idea of ultimate beauty will be explored, and an aesthetic called “Judeo-Romanticism” shall be outlined.