Holographic Universe: The old and new (General)

by dhw, Sunday, September 04, 2016, 13:08 (564 days ago) @ BBella

BBELLA: I hope it is not too much to ask you to watch this interview with Rupert Sheldrake describing the morphogenic field. I have been watching videos of the three men (Talbot, Bohm & Sheldrake) searching for interviews similar to the ones I read those years back that had such a profound effect on my thinking, given that they expressed views of what I had experienced during my illness. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Uhw11MxZvU

Many thanks for this. I already knew the gist of his morphic theories, but it was good to have more flesh put on the bones. I made copious notes during the lecture, and found that it ticked many boxes with me, especially the different forms of energy, the presumptuousness of materialism, the importance of investigating what appear to be paranormal phenomena such as telepathy. There are huge ramifications to his proposal that memory is not situated in the brain (see also below), and at one point he seemed to be about to tell us that the individual's morphic field supported the concept of an afterlife, but he swiftly added that the question remained open. He wisely refrained from extending the whole concept to that of an all-encompassing “morphic field”, which would be God, but he did say that he was once an atheist, and my guess is that he is now a theist. (I haven't got time to delve.) I can only admire his courage in standing up to his materialist colleagues, and I'm sure he's right that some of them are too afraid to lend him support.

There are a few things that are not clear to me, which perhaps you can explain. He used a clever image concerning buildings to explain how each organism also needed to be preceded by a plan, and this was not provided by the genes. The plan was what he called the morphogenetic field - the coming into being of form. But the forms we know are established, and so these fields are not for genesis but for preservation. If form is not a physical product, and if the field preserves the form, how can there be innovation? Is this an argument against evolution and for a God who has to devise new plans for each new organ/organism?

Furthermore, the plan precedes the building, and so the suggestion seems to be that my morphogenetic field preceded me. Where is the separation between my morphogenetic field (which gives me my form) and my morphic field - the one which will contain my memories, as well as containing collective memories of my species, and which presumably also contains the rest of my thinking faculties, unless memory is “morphic” and thought is physical? If there is no separation, and if my morphic field is to contain my form, my memory and my thoughts, the potential me must have existed before I was born! These may be very stupid observations, but perhaps I am not the only one who finds these different fields confusing.

At the beginning of the lecture, Sheldrake acknowledged that what the fields actually are is still a mystery. This was in the midst of remarks concerning energy and space-time. He may even have said they WERE space-time, but I may have misheard. He certainly did say later that every organ and every organism has its own field, and he even demonstrated that single cells had their own fields (they must do, since they take on so many different forms). This means that every single one of these morphic/morphogenetic (what is the difference?) fields must have a memory - otherwise, it could not reproduce the same form. But memory as a form-maker is useless without the means of applying it to the materials that make up the physical body. And so the implication seems to be that the morphic field is some kind of mind that directs the body (as I said earlier, even before the body has come into existence), and indeed directs every form of matter. We are therefore entering the realm of panpsychism. I just don't have time to follow this up now, but it would be interesting to know if Sheldrake is a panpsychist, just how far he takes this concept, and in what way it differs from his own.

Thank you again, BBella, and my apologies if I have sometimes missed the point!

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