GOD AND THE BRAIN
I’m aware that many scientists and philosophers believe that consciousness, as compared with matter, represents ultimate reality – while believing that a biblical God is completely unnecessary for explaining the Universe. The problem here is that an image by definition requires an observer – a fact which should cause every student of mind to weigh in on what the Bible actually teaches about God; for the design of the brain makes sense only if we are in fact created in the image of a transcendent Observer – thereby giving us the capacity for thwarting our own nonexistence in a manner analogous to way God sustains the physical Universe. The central nugget is that we must, exactly as the Bible proclaims, “live and move and have our being in God”[i] if consciousness and its dependence upon an image is to be explained. Every image needs a surround (which I think of as a “bubble of awareness”), and if we are remain conscious every surround needs an image. To paraphrase a quote from the famous psychologist Koffka, “Mere ground would be equivalent to no consciousness at all.”[ii]
Beyond this rather self-evident insight, some readers, by the time they finish the book, are likely to glimpse something yet more extraordinary – that in a personal, God-centered universe the fusion between an image and its surrounding field of awareness is thermodynamically indistinguishable from the interface between order and disorder – something possible only if God, not matter, is fundamental. Think about this for a moment. When we perceive an image, we are restraining a universal tendency toward increasing disorder. In other words, an image is not epiphenomenal to what is going on in the brain. It is the interface! Further, as readers of Journey will discover, the relationship between order and disorder is exactly equivalent to the relationship between past and future – proving, incidentally, that eternity is the habitat of God.[iii]
If at this point there are readers who insist there is a way to get around the need for a biblical God, they are in for a surprise – all tightly linked to the fact that the weight- and heat-regulating centers of the brain, known respectfully as the ponderostatic and thermoregulatory nuclei of the so-called “limbic brain,” are found smack dab in the middle of the brain, right next to the center which initiates the movement needed for creating and sustaining an image! The presence of this image thwarts a process that would otherwise result in the cold and weightless infinitude of nonexistence. Again, in the image of God – who similarly sustains the physical Universe!
A further intriguing insight (and a hint as to what is to come) comes directly from neuroscience; namely, that every image “out there” has a neurological reference to, and is actually a projection of the procreative organs of the body “down below” – thus assuring that the body mass as a whole (to which every image is fused) will be sustained generation by generation.
However, everything makes sense only if the transcendent self – and equivalently the finite body – are forever tending (implicitly in the absence of an image), toward nonexistence. In a nutshell there is, prior to the successful creation or sustaining of an anticipated state (an image), a tiny gap between the actual body mass and what, in the incipient absence of this image, is an impending state of weightlessness. This weightless state is also “anticipated” in the sense of a tendency toward. In a personal, God-centered Universe “anticipation” and a “tendency toward” turn out to be one and the same! At any point in time the anticipatory mismatch or “gap” between what is actual and what is anticipated is probabilistic – which means that in the incipient absence of an anticipated image the probability of the body mass becoming disordered and eventually weightless accelerates. The reader will see that this tendency is bound to the energy-regulating design of the limbic brain – and is inseparable from we call “feeling” – much as our body would feel heavier in an elevator that is accelerating upward. The “feeling” aspect doesn’t come from the brain. Rather, being fused with an image, it is the interface between order and disorder and in a God-centered Universe is literally the process of containing disorder.
The laws of physics depend similarly upon a tiny gap between an anticipated and actual (current) state – the image. Equivalently, every awareness bubble is dependent upon this gap. This gap continually contrasts the transcendent self with infinity and, which is the same, its potential nonexistence. This gap requires the light of God[iv] – as the ultimate means by which an image and the surrounding self are illuminated as “conscious.” This illumination (not too bright or too dim) depends upon one’s success at slowing the Second Law with such success being exactly equal to the optimization of a contrast between the finite and the infinite and/or the efficacy of sustaining an optimal expectancy gap. The logic is flawless assuming that God, not matter, is fundamental.
One quick thought. If at this early stage everything seems a little too esoteric or deep to follow, just to your best to follow the gist – repetition is very likely going to clear everything up. It is very, very difficult to adjust our thinking to a completely new paradigm and the full implications of a personal, God-centered Universe where matter is not fundamental. We’re not just talking about the importance of God, but a Universe in which He is all in all – the very “substance,” the core reality, in whom we live and move. God is not way “out there” somewhere, but is omnipresent – so much more fundamental than mere matter that words fail.
It is encouraging that scientists and mathematicians, despite their choice to exclude God by proclamation, are increasingly referring to an “anthropic principle” in attempting to explain the origin and meaning of the universe – a term that, despite its pleasant ring, is just another way to avoid giving glory to God – exactly as the Bible forewarns.[v] The very idea that naturalistic science is a logical superlative to God is a mere assumption – the fabrication of embittered minds as you are about to see!
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