Saturday, March 31, 2007

Tuning In to Reality

All around the world, a new group of thinkers and dreamers are popping their heads out of their gopher holes and catching sight of each other for the first time. Scientists and philosophers, it would seem, are being drawn towards a common set of central truths as to the nature of reality, and what is really happening behind the scenes when we use words like consciousness, spirit, time, and entropy.



The eleven minute animation that vaulted Imagining the Tenth Dimension to popularity continues to draw new fans on a daily basis. Although I must continually point out that the ideas in this animation originate from a non-scientist (me), and are not what you will be taught today in a physics class, I am also gratified at the number of people who have thanked me for what is most commonly being referred to as a new and mind-blowing experience.

As an inquisitive eight-year-old, I was introduced to some of the basic ideas of dimensions and the folding of spacetime through Madeleine L'Engle's transcendent children's book "A Wrinkle in Time". Did L'Engle get all of her science right? No. Does that matter? To the extent that this wonderful book (as it did for countless other fans, I'm sure) expanded my young mind's perception of the universe to want to know more about these topics, those approximations and tiny liberties she took in creating her work of imagination matter very little. Previous generations to mine might have been drawn to the writing of H.G. Wells, or that granddaddy of creative books about dimensionality, Edwin Abbott's 1884 classic “Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions” (from which came my use of the concept of two-dimensional Flatlanders).

More recently, books by science fiction visionaries like Greg Bear and Stephen Baxter, and movies as diverse as The Matrix or Groundhog Day are really about the same ideas that I have been exploring all my life: that our reality is being created from branching possibilities that already exist across the dimensions. This idea, I believe, finds a useful balance between hard determinism and free will, showing how there are certain outcomes which appear to be inevitable based upon the trajectories and choices already taken within the "sum over histories" that got us to this moment, but how each of us still has a great deal of control over our own version of reality from any particular moment forward.

Last blog I mentioned The Secret. Someone wrote to me and suggested that Imagining the Tenth Dimension is a more well-balanced, less simplistic representation of the same ideas as are advanced by Rhonda Byrne and her team: a fact that I find fascinating since I did not hear about The Secret until well after my book was published. Likewise, I have been contacted by fans of Neale Donald Walsch's "Conversations With God" series of bestselling books, telling me that the ideas I present are completely compatible with Neale's, and perhaps even offer an explanation for how the processes he describes could be manifesting themselves. How do coincidences of thought like this occur when I had never read any of Neale's work? Must be spring, hello all you other gophers!

Right now I'm reading an exciting new book by Gevin Giorbran called "Everything Forever: Learning to See Timelessness". This beautifully illustrated book is a gold mine for anyone interested in a cataloguing of the many ways that science (and philosophy!) have shown us that time can be thought of as much more than the limited one-way-arrow that we experience. Gevin has some remarkable insights into the underlying dynamic tensions that create the reality we are witness to, and I'm sure I will be talking about this book more in upcoming blogs.

One email I received a couple of weeks ago had this to say about Imagining the Tenth Dimension: "this isn't string theory, but it's right!". That feeling of something clicking, of seeing new ideas and having a little "A-ha!" light of recognition come on, is one of the things I have heard most from fans of this project. Is my eleven minute animation the "Wrinkle in Time" for up-and-coming minds of the twenty-first century? To the extent that I believe that my "new way of thinking about time and space" can be a useful step towards a more enlightened view of reality, I would be very proud if that was how this project someday grew to be remembered.

Enjoy the journey,

Rob

1 comment:

Roger said...

Thank you for creating and sharing this. I have a feeling I am going to want to watch this many more times as I absorb the potential embedded here.

Tenth Dimension Vlog playlist