Thursday, July 26, 2007

Gevin Giorbran on the Tenth Dimension Live Chat

The "Imagining the Tenth Dimension" live chat experiment started a few days ago: each day, viewers can check in to see a streaming live feed, and questions are posted and answered in real time. Here's yesterday's show, an interview with Gevin Giorbran, author of "Everything Forever: Learning to See Timelessness". New shows are happening every day at 3 pm CST / 9 pm Greenwich Mean Time... but anyone can chat and view interesting links in this area twenty-four hours a day. Come to and join in the fun!

I look forward to meeting you there.

Rob Bryanton
Imagning the Tenth Dimension

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Everything Fits Together in the Zero at the End

The poll is now ended and the results are in. 33% per cent say Imagining the Tenth Dimension's about physics, 20% say it's about philosophy, and 46% picked my personal fave, "all of the above". Fantastic! Great to know how many people are following the direction we're headed here.

Everything fits together in the zero physicists are now proving we are heading towards. Understanding the relationship between probability space and the physical realities each of us have come to exist within has some very profound implications... and the moral questions raised are not always comfortable ones to deal with.

There is good news at the end though: the fact you are here now means there are parts of you that are here forever, in the timelessness that most physicists agree our reality is carved out from. I have been using Julian Jaynes's marvelous ideas to show an important insight into all of this: the trick is to tune into those integrated bicameral-mind moments where you get your narrator voice to shut up for a sec and just "be". That's when you become more productive, more capable, and more at peace with the observer that is "you" within the fifth dimension. You also become more open to those forces from the future that are warning you about what's coming right at this very instant. Why is a troubled, negative mind in constant chaotic turmoil? And why, on the other hand, are those zen moments of ancient wisdom so clearly tied into the positive side of all this? Once you enter the mindset of timelessness, you are centred back on the unity of the observer and the observed, and you connect to the future that already exists for all of us as the goal we know we are headed towards.

Is this wacky set of ideas actually reflected in hard science? The jury's still out, but that's where I believe we're headed. Does this make it any less about eternal truths than any other piece of art or Joseph-Cambpell-sized meme-shapes in the higher dimensions? If reality and information are interchangeable concepts, then there is no reason that both ways of thinking shouldn't align out there in the meme-space and spime-space that are both so clearly part of that duality of information/reality we exist within.

Does that make you, or me, an idea in the Mind of God? Learning not to be afraid of that idea has been a hard journey for twentieth-century science. Think of the "wacky" ideas from the last hundred years which physics and cosmology have come to accept. Think of how many of these have been portrayed as "too strange to imagine" by the general press. Why is it not public knowledge that Kaluza proved and Einstein eventually agreed that our reality exists in the fifth, not the fourth dimension? Why is the zero-one-both state of subatomic particles portrayed as being so unimaginable, when seeing those three choices as a positive spin and a negative spin pushing against each other in the fifth dimension (the place where both can exist simultaneously) is really not that hard to do?

Why has there not been more made of the accelerated-expansion universe that Gevin Giorbran predicted years before it was observed? Because there are spiritual ramifications to this idea, and historically there has been an ingrained mistrust of anything spiritual amongst many of science's established edifices. Thankfully, that era is coming to an end now, if only because there are scientists now willing to accept that both viewpoints can co-exist without either denying the validity of the other.

Our universe is not without hope for the future, because our ultimate end is not a meaningless heat death. Attitude affects outcome, and being interested in "what happens next" is key. As negative forces pushing against positive forces create patterns in possibility space, grouping and symmetry give us fractals and fads, great and small truths, and life itself within the multiverse.

In fact, that future is what draws each of us forward right now: towards symmetry, the perfect balance, the beautiful but once much-maligned zero. If you've got all that straight in your head, then welcome to the tenth dimension! We've been waiting for you.

Enjoy the journey,

Rob Bryanton

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Just Ten Things

Here's the current results from the previous poll, gang: 35% say I'm talking about physics stuff, 21% say this is about spirituality, and at almost half, 42% say it's both. Fantastic! This is the important thing to keep in mind: even though we're all talking about the same thing, each of us has their unique point of view, and in some cases that point of view has been designed to disallow the existence of other conflicting points of view. So what? We've known that all along, that's the way life is.

So here we are in the fifth dimension (this is a fact physicists have known about since Kaluza proved it in 1919, but for some reason the established media have not been inclined to promote this information: more about the "conspiracy theories" meme in a bit). We are being drawn forward by the future towards absolute zero: not the sad place where everything becomes meaningless, but rather the place where all the positive and negative spins of our probability-space world reassemble back into one, and everything fits together.

Why is the fifth dimension such a dangerous idea? Because there are moral questions that have to be answered. If you are going to admit that all we really are is a sea of information (which many people on this planet like to think of as the Mind of God), chosen from the unobserved reality that quantum mechanics calls indeterminacy, then there are moral questions that have to be answered. Selfish memes and selfish genes point the way for us to see how the patterns that connect us from the beginning to the end of our universe have to include each of us taking some personal responsibility for the creation of good within the world in which we live.

Which leads to the question of whether science preferring to suppress anything to do with spirituality might have more to do with the funding that comes from an old boys network who remain right where they are as long as the rest of the planet doesn't find out what they've been up to and how easy it would have been to stop them if we had only known. As the global village becomes aware of itself, we become a more enlightened and caring world, and that's what the web is starting to do for us all right this very moment in spacetime.

Is it a good thing that the Divas currently in trouble (Lohan, Spears, Hilton etc.) are being monitored so closely that we could actually save their lives instead of letting them self-destruct as some of their predecessors before them did? This is one of the ways that we can see the more enlightened viewpoint is steadily gaining ground. By the time we realize that we are all just different aspects of the same quantum observer, we see how we could be part of the same recurring patterns, created by the opposing organizing forces of symmetry and order, as explained so well by Gevin Giorbran, over at

Still, let's not be mistaken here. There are a growing number of scientists who are seeing parts of the same image I portray at Imagining the Tenth Dimension: everything fits together at zero. Zero is the mind of God viewed in its entirety: no wonder zero has had such a rough ride down through the millenia! The idea that everything ends at an Omega point that is "outside the system" relates to what Gödel was talking about with his incompleteness theorems. Within that omega, gravity determines the amount of grouping, and the speed of light's planck length defines the framing chosen from probability space that defines our particular universe, with its unchanging gravity and its restrictions against faster-than-light travel.

Gravity, then, can easily be thought of as the probability of something continuing to be here an instant from now, based upon the sum over histories paths that got that object to where it is right now. Gevin suggests that at the quantum realm this is also a form of inertia: the more locked in by the overall consensual reality a particular pattern is, the harder it is for free will to make a difference to it. That's why no amount of free will can change the force of gravity, and the multiverse of possibilities that surround us in the fifth dimension is an easy way for us to imagine not just the "bent 4D spacetime" of gravity, but the hidden forces of dark matter as well.

Popular culture and philosophy/spirituality show us the ways that a "big picture" enlightened view is completely compatible with cosmology and quantum mechanics: but that has more to do with the Joseph-Campbell-sized simple truths that everyone knows, which leads some people to belittle the worth of those ideas. Once we understand that ideas are just a part of meme-space, which is just as real as the physical space we see around us right now, we see how easy it is to make a change to some things that up to now may have seemed insurmountable. And you see the ways in which we're all connected together and are co-operating with each other, and the ways that some of us think they disagree with the consensual reality they're in when in the really big picture they couldn't possibly disagree. After all, according to my framework for discussion, we're all just a point in the seventh dimension.

Here's a link to an upcoming article from next week's issue of Newsweek about exciting new experiments showing how the future really can influence the present. The secret of life is about being interested in what happens next. Once you understand that reality and information are interchangeable, you understand what the ancient mystics have known all along: time is an illusion, and everything fits together at zero. Terence McKenna definitely got it right.

Enjoy the journey,

Rob Bryanton

Monday, July 23, 2007

Physics or Philosophy?

That's this week's poll question, folks: "Is Imagining the Tenth Dimension about Physics or Philosophy? Or both?".

"Or neither?", some might suggest, should be the fourth answer, but I would argue that quantum mechanics tells us that's the same thing as "both". The simultaneous yes/no that we spring from in the "outside the system" realm of indeterminacy may sound like it has a zen-like yin/yang to it, but it can also be described thusly: "both the yes and no occur, and we have no way to know this information any more than that". This is one of the concepts explained so well in Seth Lloyd's book, "Programming the Universe": Seth is one of the pioneers in quantum computing. Is the universe really just a giant quantum computer, processing the information that is reality? I believe my proposed framework for imagining reality is very compatible with this idea.

Which gets to the basic question: is Imagining the Tenth Dimension a useful tool for helping to envision the nature of reality, even though it was created by someone who's not a physicist, and is not even pretending to be one?

Here's the thing: of course there are going to be other ways of imagining reality which happen to agree with physics! It would be far far stranger if there weren't other ways that science and art, or cosmology and philosophy/spirituality happened to agree on things that are essentially true about where our reality comes from and why we're here.

People from an astonishingly diverse range of backgrounds, then, who are drawn to the Imagining the Tenth Dimension animation and my book tell me they recognize things they know are essentially true, and this is what connects all of the fans of this project together. Today (Monday, July 23rd '07) we started a new experiment: the Live Chat window at the tenth dimension site now also has a Live Video feed within it, where I can converse with people in real time. A recording of today's first live camera feed can be found here, and a transcript of the text chat portion can be found here. This is just the beginnings of an experiment, but it shows lots of promise. Hey, new experiences are what life's all about!

A couple of weeks ago I had a new and humbling experience with a faith healer named Jason, who is an old friend who has now become a minister: we laid hands on my mom (thank you everyone for your prayers and good wishes), he prayed and sang, and mom cried and laughed at the same time at the power she felt pulsing into her from his hand on her. "A beautiful expression of the immense power of positive visualization, and one of the best parts about any faith-based belief system" was probably how I would have eventually filed the experience away. But then something changed the experience for me.

I was talking to my mom later that evening, who was still feeling energized by the session - and I remarked that I could see that as soon as Jason laid his hand on her forehead we could all see had an immediate and intense reaction. "Oh no, Robbie", says she, "it wasn't that hand, it was the other one, down in the middle of my back." Well, without even thinking about it I immediately told her the truth: that wasn't Jason's hand in the middle of her back, because that's where my hand was.

What can I say? Much as my mom has loved the occasional back rub over the last few months, there's never been a time I've put my hand on her back and she burst into tears at the beautiful and powerful energy she felt. Which leads me to my next physics/philosophy/all-of-the-above idea. Just for fun, let's try to imagine Jesus now as being an aspect of a powerful meme, a shape in the ninth dimension, that is carved out from the indeterminate yes/no choices of the information vs. reality realm the big bang has divided out for us down here in the fifth dimension. Does this smack of the dangerous blending of science and religion that Richard Dawkins has been trying to eliminate?

I am a huge Richard Dawkins fan, and I am a firm believer in our existence being the result of the selfish genes and the selfish memes that got us here today. But by keeping his focus so narrow on science and science alone, Mr. Dawkins runs a risk: deny that there is a spiritual aspect to our reality which is also true, and you give the impression that you believe there is no morality to our existence, no right or wrong.

Find the simultaneous yes/no and quantum mechanics tells you you've found the underlying truth about our existence. And I believe that leaves room for some optimism that we are actually headed towards something good within the timeless multiverse my animation portrays. Is that such a bad thing to imagine?

Enjoy the journey,

Rob Bryanton

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Your Sixth-Dimensional Self

One of the more extraordinary claims I make in my book is that what we think of as the "soul" is more akin to Marvin Minsky's "Society of Mind" concept, and that we spend our lives integrating and rejecting various meme-systems floating out there in the dimensions, and the particular subset we have taken on at any one moment defines who we are... but this is a system that changes somewhat over our lives. This gives us an easy way to answer the old conundrum, where do all the new souls come from? There were less than ten million of us on the planet in 10,000 BC, 2.5 billion of us in 1950, now we're around 6.5 billion! Statistically, the chances of any one of us here today being the reincarnated soul of a person who lived on this planet in the last two thousand years are becoming vanishingly small, down into lottery ticket territory. Unless...

By the time we have imagined that timelessness is a real description of our place in the cosmos, and that what we think of as a soul is a specific collection of memes, then there is no reason to assume that there is a limit to the perceived number of souls, or the locations in time of those souls. In fact, there is no reason to assume that you couldn't walk up to someone on the street right now and realize that you have met another incarnation of yourself! But it gets even stranger than that.

Living on a Mobius Strip
According to my way of imagining the dimensions, in our physical bodies we are each on the equivalent of a mobius strip, travelling down a specific "line of time" in the fourth dimension, unaware of the twists and turns that we are making in the dimensions above. I have written much about what this means in the fifth dimension, including the fact that Theodor Kaluza proved and Einstein eventually agreed that the field equations of gravity and light can be combined if they are defined in the fifth dimension, not the fourth-dimensional space-time that seems to have become stuck in the general public's mind more easily. Most people are unaware that the basic aspects of our physical reality are being defined in the fifth dimension.

Imagining my fourth dimensional body as an undulating snake, with my conceived self at one end and my deceased self at the other, is one of the starting points of my visual way of imagining the dimensions. Imagining the fifth dimensional branches of choice and possibility that extend out from this moment shows how a hard determinist could look back in time and see the proof that there is only one reality, because after the fact that is all we can see; while a person believing in free will can look forward into the fifth dimension and see that their future is not written in stone after all. However: going through that exercise artificially diminishes the size and import of what has come before, since the undulating snake leading back to the beginning of my physical body seems to be much smaller than the exploding dandelion seed of the possible branches set before me from this moment forward.

"Angels of Possibility"
So now, let's think of our bodies in the sixth dimension, which contains all possible timelines for our particular universe. Where is my sixth dimensional self the largest? If you think about it for a moment, you will see it is at the moment of conception. From there, the branching possibilities that will get me to some version of my adult self are exponentially larger than any time thereafter. This seems to relate to Terence McKenna's "timewave zero" concept, which suggests that novelty increases as the end of the universe approaches, but it is the mirror image at "right angles" to his idea: the possible cusps of change that an embryo or even a small child have before them are absolutely immense compared to the more limited subset that we have left to choose from by the time we are adults. Here is one of the more often-quoted paragraphs from my book:

"The beautiful blossoming potential we see in a newborn child is an immensely attractive thing. The angels of possibility that swirl around a toddler’s head can be breathtaking if we catch even a fleeting glimpse. And there is nothing as sad as the tragedy of a child who has been mistreated or abused, and whose life may never be the same because of it. Even from our limited window in the lower dimensions, it is easy for us to intuitively understand what is magical and wonderful about the promise of a child, a promise that is held within the sixth dimension."

Religious teachings which say we should approach the Lord as a little child resonate with this idea as well. That reverence, that sense of wonder, that appreciation of the novelty and the vast potential that are held in every instant of time, in every quark and neutrino, and in the spirit energy all around us is part of an awakening that all of us as adults yearn for. On the other hand, whether we are talking about the death of a spirit or the death of a physical body, what we are really talking about is what happens when those processes cease to be interested in "what happens next".

"And in The End..."
What does timelessness mean for me? Because time is an illusion, it means that once any of us breaks out of our physical reality, there we will find all the other branches of our sixth dimensional selves, waiting to greet us and compare notes on the journey, and see how everything fits together.

And that is what enjoying the journey should always be about.


A link to this video can be found at

Monday, July 9, 2007

The Tenth Dimension Goes Live

Here's something new we're trying now: schedule permitting, every day at 10 p.m. Greenwich Mean Time (which is 4 p.m. CST my time), I am talking live to people from around the world about the Imagining the Tenth Dimension project.

The live chat in its full form can be found at A small part of the room is below. As you'll see, this includes a "Copy Chatroom" button that lets you grab a piece of code, so that anyone who wants to can paste this part of the chatroom into their own website.

One of the nice things about this window, which comes from the good folks at meebo, is any YouTube, Google Video, or Metacafe movie can be shared without leaving the chat window, plus links to Flickr photo sets. Any url link can also be shared, and and any of these links to media and websites become thumbnails that remain after visitors leave the site.

Within the formatting of my blog, the video window is not being shown here, but a text-only chat sometimes has its uses as well.

Welcome to the Tenth Dimension. Enjoy the journey!

Rob Bryanton

Monday, July 2, 2007

The Wii World

Our world is getting smaller: in other words, new technology like the Wii is making our world more wee (sorry for making the obvious pun). Does getting everybody in the world connected together through technology smack of socialism? Like most things, that depends upon your point of view.

I live in the province of Saskatchewan, Canada. Saskatchewan is a strange place: first left-wing socialist government in North America, birthplace of medicare, pioneers in fibreoptics, first adopters of on-demand hi-def TV over phone lines. Here in Saskatchewan, our province has now launched government-sponsored free wireless internet access in the four largest cities.

A few months ago in this blog, I mentioned the ideal interface for anything should be able to be boiled down to just two choices: a concept I deal with in my book in the chapter "The Binary Viewpoint". In Gevin Giorbran's Learning to See Timelessness, we see a way to imagine that everything is the result of two opposing forces of order, grouping and symmetry. And in my book, we talk about the biggest-picture-of-all multiverse, and how our own universe could be summed up as being a slice from that multiverse. If reality and information are two sides of the same coin (as quantum mechanics tells us), then any instant in spacetime should be able to summed up by that binary point of view: these are things it is, these are the things it isn't.

The July 07 issue of Scientific American has a great article by neurobiologist Joe Z. Tsien about new research showing how the brain encodes memory. By tracking the firing of hundreds of neurons simultaneously, his team has reached the conclusion that we use a hierchical pyramid of associations spread across "cliques" of neurons to encode specific memories. That pyramid, they say, has a binary element to it: so all memories about moments we almost died would be part of a certain neuron clique, and then memories where we almost died while swimming would be in a subset of that clique, while memories where we almost died in a car accident would be part of a different subset of that same clique, and so on.

To quote Mr. Tsien from the article:

"This combinatorial, hierchical approach to memory formation provides a way for the brain to generate an almost unlimited number of unique network-level patterns for representing the infinite number of experiences that an organism might encounter during life--similar to the way that the four 'letter'or nucleotides that up DNA moecules can be comined in a virtually unlimited number of patterns..."

Mr. Tsien ends the article on a speculative note:
"For me, our discoveries raise many interesting--and unnerving--philosophical possibilities. If all our memories, emotions, knowledge and imagination can be translated into 1s and 0s, who knows what that would mean for who we are and how we will operate in the future. Could it be the 5,000 years from now, we will be able to download our minds onto computers, travel to distant worlds and live forever in the network?"

Once again, I am struck by the idea that science and philosophy are moving to a central meeting point: the above paragraph sounds very similar to the ideas I have been promoting, but the fact that it comes from a respected member of the scientific community adds a different kind of weight to the discussion. As I explain in my book, what we think of as a soul or an individual's unique consciousness can also be thought of as a hierarchy of patterns, moving across space and time.

Coincidentally, that same issue of Scientific American has an article on new technologies that will make high speed wireless communication more and more ubiquitous, allowing high data-rate communication to be achieved through the lights in a room or the power lines into a building. This is part of an inexorable process we have been moving towards for decades now. Some day soon, no matter where you are in the world, there will be a "universal dial tone" at your disposal. In the most remote and uninhabited parts of the world, the connection might be to only a simple speech-to-text or voice-to-voice interface, but the idea of anybody in the planet having cheap and easy access to electronic communcation, whether that just be a chance to talk to a friend, or when needed, an emergency 911 operator, will help to show us how connected we are in other ways that have nothing to do with electronics or technology.

For me, one of the most exciting things about Nintendo's Wii console is not just its implications as a virtual reality tool for the home, but the way it has the potential to draw people together, allowing them to see how their own consensual reality differs from and is the same as others on the planet, and how much/how little that matters. What do I mean by that? This inexpensive box includes a service called the "Everybody Votes Channel". Anyone with an internet-connected Wii can vote on a question, and predict what they think the most common answer is going to be. So, for instance, a recent worldwide poll asked this simple question: "Do you have dreams for the future?" (a topic near and dear to my heart as readers of this blog and my book will know). Brazil, Mexico, and Peru came in with the highest percentage of "Yes" answers to this question (up around the 95% mark), the US, Denmark, and Canada came in some place near the middle of the pack (still with a fairly high percentage of yes answers). Interestingly, Gemany, Japan, and Austria came in with the lowest number of Yes answers, some place around 66%. The worldwide average for this poll came in at 80.3% yes answers, 19.7% for no.

In the connected world of blogging, commenting, and tagging, there is an astonishing clamor of people furiously typing away, wanting to be heard, wanting to feel connected. Finding ways to automatically sort out what the consensus points are that can be boiled down from that tidal wave is one of our most important goals. The Wii's Everybody Votes system shows us a glimpse of where we want to end up: inexpensive access to a worldwide system, where people can express their innermost beliefs, and see how much we all really have in common with each other, and whether the parts that any one of us don't have in common with others really matters that much in the big picture.

Enjoy the journey,


PS: As a new experiment, we have a live chat window at tenth dimension: the link is at . Schedule permitting, I will be logged in to the live chat window some time every day for anyone interested in talking about the project. Of course, everyone is welcome to go to this chat window any time and share video or URL links with each other, as part of the ongoing discussion about the nature of reality.

Tenth Dimension Vlog playlist