Our core human questions have not changed in centuries. “Who am I, where did “all this” come from, where is it going, how does it work.….?” Our answers have evolved, increasing in sophistication as our frameworks have grown and as we have added to the information available. That journey of widening perspective is expressed within the developmental stages, from nature spirits to power gods, to monotheistic creation stories and spirit-free scientific randomness duelling with both the religious dogmas and the human “spirit within”.
As we approach Second Tier there is a requirement for something more, something that integrates, transcends and includes. We cannot be satisfied with any of the earlier answers on their own and at the same time we struggle to bring them together within a descriptive framework that explains the material reality and at the same time includes the spirits of nature and the human spirit, makes sense of mystical experience, intuition and psychic awareness and satisfies our basic concepts of oneness. In addition it must empower our personal creative experience and subjective engagement with the transcendent, extending to prayer and co-creative participation. No small compass for sure, but that is what is described here.
We may not care personally or may pretend that we are not concerned whether there is a scientific description or an evidence base that validates what we do. At the same time, the world as a whole is visibly caught in the history of dualistic thinking, the density of the materialistic conception of the world and the unrelenting attacks on human experience – shamanism as primitive, mind-body medicine as mumbo-jumbo and subjective consciousness as a “psychosis” – an aberrant side-effect of a complex brain. Even integrally informed readers may have questions in many of these areas. There is an essential need for a coherent science that acknowledges the evidence for all of these areas and provides an explanatory framework for why things are the way they are. Not only is this the next better response to our core questions. It is a key to empowering human beings to be all of who we are and to claim our potency in the non-material realms in a way that both parallels two centuries of material progress and supplies the intelligence to reconnect it with humans and planet alike.
Fortunately the evidence is abundant and the theoretical integration is remarkably simple. I will skip rapidly to the conclusion here. It is only challenging because it requires us to invert our previous model and we have only failed to do this before because we were trapped in the dead end that science presented us with and perhaps allowed ourselves to be satisfied by it.
The scientific cul-de-sac
The dead end is called quantum theory. It was seductive because it occupied the space between energy and matter. We conscious ones could pacify our doubt by chanting the mantra “everything is energy” and latch on to the uncertainties of Heisenberg, know that nothing is real until we “collapse the wave with observation”. All of this is true, as far as it goes. It is also useless and rather like a totem. We can believe in it and invoke it but it doesn’t add to our knowledge or contribute to any increased capability in our use of it. It also fails to bridge the gap that separates human consciousness from universal consciousness. To a degree it assists our ability to receive the oneness, but it does not help us use it.
“Everything is Energy” is a chocolate teapot. Nice, tasty even, but useless for making tea. The absolutely key question that it leaves unanswered is “what makes energy become the kinds of matter it does?” All our other questions stem from this one because we are material beings exploring our relationship with consciousness. “Everything is Energy” fails to explain consciousness, and how matter and consciousness are connected.
I said that we are required to invert our previous model. What did I mean by that? Most conceptions that we have used would place consciousness in an experiential realm. Even if you don’t buy the “psychosis” model, even if you know that there is a non-ordinary reality that is equally valid with the material one, you are likely to view consciousness as somehow separate from your physical being. Most of our spiritual practices have required a suppression of the body – meditation and mindfulness as ways to engage with “something else”. I am not being critical; there has been and still is much value in finding the space between thoughts. In the special space, we know that there is no duality. The problem is that we tend to return to duality when we open our eyes.
What would it take to live in oneness as our daily, living, breathing experience?
The answer begins to surface when we answer the earlier question – what makes matter take the shapes that it does, what sustains form, allowing the evolution of quarks to atoms, molecules to amino acids, single cells to trillion-celled humans and Beige humans to Yellow-Teal empowered conscious humanity? The answer is that consciousness is not some rather shapeless and formless mist. Consciousness is the driving force of reality. I will say that again in a different way. Consciousness makes reality what it is.
That does not mean that consciousness is directive. It is not a creator-God in that old way. The randomness that science describes is not unreal. To start with, energy is indeed random. However it does not stay that way. There are patterns that work and are sustainable. Those of a mathematical inclination look at all the myriad ways that energy could form which would not result in material existence. It appears vanishingly unlikely that the universe somehow hit on the only formula that would work. To some this is the evidence for a creator intelligence that designed it.
There is a simpler explanation; trial and error. All that it takes is for the patterns to work to be remembered and thus amenable to being repeated. There are mathematical principles that govern which patterns will work. The universe discovered them because all the patterns that did not work failed to remain in existence. Buckminster Fuller and Nassim Haramein describe why they are the way they are, and like all of the best science, the principles are elegant, but they have been known for a long time. They show up on the walls of temples, in the flower of life, in the Star of David and in the three-dimensional extrapolations of those geometries that have been regarded for millennia as “sacred”. In its earliest moments, the universe encountered them. It
then remembered them and repeated them. The patterns are scalable. The video on the book’s homepage gives a flavour of how that happens, though it is more meaningful if you imagine it in 3D and there are other graphics in the resources section which hint at how the Star of David becomes an energetic building block for matter.
So the universe is a self-creating device that turns energy into matter. It also turns matter into energy. You are not the fixed form that you imagine yourself to be. In every nano-second, electrons are moving in and out of the atoms that make your body. You are physically in connection with the whole, to a massive degree and all of the time. While we are busy habitually thinking of ourselves as independent physical entities, we are in fact nothing of the kind. This has implications that I will return to in due course, but I want you to take it on board right away, and begin to dismantle your current reality, because there is more.
There are so many levels to this and so many consequences for who we think we are, and what is possible. I may as well say now that I don’t know where the universe stores its memories, only that it is clear that it does so. And of course this notion is not just my invention. Parts of it have been around for a while, as described for example by Erwin Laszlo in “The Akashic Field”. Conceptually it also underlies all the work of Rupert Sheldrake. You may have read of a morphogenetic field, which is a description of the portion of universal memory that deals with the formation of living systems. What those theories have lacked is the sense of continuum, the way that these fields are aspects of the entire reality that we call consciousness.
Dancing in the Mind-field
The nature of patterning in evolution is that building blocks are created until there is a possibility for the next level of integration. There comes a point when individual entities move into the next scale of bonding, an energetic co-operation that supports them to sustain their existence. Atoms bond together as molecules and thus become part of a larger energy structure. In the same way, primitive cells and energy processing structures came together to form the complex cells that make our bodies. Some of the patterns by which cells manage their chemistry are usable as particular organic functions. So larger groupings of cells are possible to the extent that your body contains approximately 50 trillion of them as blood, bones, livers, kidneys and brains. These structures are collaborative in maintaining your existence for decades, in comparison with the days that might be the case for the original single-celled forms that you evolved out of. You can think of yourself as a huge stack of collaborating bacteria.
And then humans too, bond and collaborate, first as families, then as tribes, towns, cities and beyond. The stage that we now recognise is the formation of a global interconnectedness. It is happening very fast and is not yet stable. It may not achieve stability but we are engaging intellectually with the challenge of doing so, experimenting as all earlier stages did with the blending of competition and individual survival into a wider collaborative engagement.
Evolution is the story of how the planet has been doing this over 4 billion years. The presentation of Darwinian evolution emphasised competition, as the Orange culture it emerged into inevitably would. It saddled him with the phrase “the survival of the fittest”. This has never been a genuine picture of evolutions. As Elisabet Sahtouris describes elegantly in “Earthdance” there is an ebb and flow that supports new forms that arise within an ecology, or enter it from elsewhere, to dance the polarity of competition and collaboration that over time enriches the ecology. Everywhere our Earth speaks the ongoing music of this expansively-spiralling dance.
In that dance, individuals and species may thrive or not, change or become extinct. The same dance is visible in our human journey and in our cities as new entrants disrupt previous ecologies, are assimilated or rejected. History speaks of the conquests from outside, the culture shifts, the failures and the residual successes. Red is indeed competitive, but that has not been the only dynamic. Of course our Green caring would have it that every individual, every culture must survive. This is humanly understandable and biologically unrealistic. The ISIL culture is not a viable, sustainable form. Ultimately it must adapt and integrate or it will perish. Our multicultural cities are also only sustainable to the extent of that adaptation.
Politics may seem tangential to the narrative, but I am trying to convey just how many levels are in motion at the same time. Evolution as it is usually described is a scientific myth. The genetics that are typically presented to us concentrate on the remarkable single-gene or gene-complex knowledge that enables specific treatment for certain conditions. It’s impressive but misleading. The depth and complexity of how genes build a complex body over 20 years, how DNA differentiates to build our organs and put them in the right place is part of a story which is vastly more magical and rich than you are ever told. It is a wonderful story which Bruce Lipton tells a part of very well in “Biology of Belief, but there is more.
Coherence and Connection
Likewise our stories of brains and bodies, of how we maintain 50 trillion cells with the level of coherent function that we do, is never put together because science is compartmentalised, and each discipline thinks it has the most important part of the story. Our view of the brain has had over-emphasis on the neural connectivity and the building of networks and connections. For sure there is huge richness there and we still have a long way to go before it is understood. But there is also the chemistry of hormones, the way that cells are also communicating through chemical messengers and the way that the body is, in consequence, mind all over. That knowledge arises from Candace Pert’s “Molecules of Emotion” and is likewise in its infancy. I could in addition speak of the many other communication systems that keep our cells connected at light speed and which form the basis of consciousness and our relationship with that which is physically beyond our boundaries. There is the significance of the heart, not as the mere muscle that some would tell you it is, but as a source of information and coherence as described by Dr Alan Watkins and in the work of the HeartMath Institute. The heartbeat is present before the brain develops and the heart sends more information to the brain than it receives from it.
And there we are again, at the door of consciousness. We have a conscious, self-developing, self-creating universe in which the outcomes of the explorations it has made are recorded in its inbuilt memory. We have a conscious self-developing humanity that is a subset of that universal exploration. And then we must consider how the two relate to each other, because consciousness is the thing that we are interested in above all.
So many strands to weave, so many directions to go and facets to integrate but also many pieces to leave out. The way that shamanistic reality and science have both described the connection with plant consciousness. The way that homeopathic science and mind-body medicine have provided evidence for information consciousness functioning in the maintenance and healing of the body. The way that medical intuitives (e.g Caroline Myss and MonaLisa Shultz) can detect these relationships and energy healers can directly intervene in them. These are not just interesting stories, they are part of the evidence for the influence and activity that result from the model I am presenting, but that I will not cover in what follows.
I also will not present the reasons why you must be suspicious of the conventional story in physics, the search for a unified theory and the popularist presentation of the Higgs Boson as “the God particle”. Higgs would never claim such a daft idea. Richard Feynman – one of the greatest, as well as the most ruthlessly honest of physicists – describes some fundamental aspects of accepted theory as “a dippy process” and “a shell game”. Regardless of the magnificent achievements that result from science, there is sand beneath the foundations. I say this because it is essential that we question these biological and physical certainties whenever they do not fit with the evidence from thousands of years of consistent human experience. I am also not delving into the methodological and philosophical errors that lead to that evidence being systematically excluded from scientific investigation, but you can rest assured that the sceptical perspective on consciousness is very poorly founded. It is time for humanity to trust itself and for us to know what we know. The world is more magical and more filled with possibility than we have allowed ourselves to see; it is time to stripaway the veils.
The momentous inversion of perspective
The story I am telling is fundamental to our entry into a second tier reality. We cannot achieve the functionality of Yellow/Teal without a huge shift. Clare Graves’ “momentous leap” includes a seismic shift in our view of reality. Embracing the Turquoise holism demands that we turn science on its head, remove it from its position as master of our reality and make it once again the servant of our being that it should be. Coincidentally this is the same gesture that we must make with money, another tail that is wagging the dog, a story that I tell in “Reinventing Capitalism”. All of the themes that we encounter in describing the shift to second tier, whether it is in organisations, or society or in ourselves, demand a new frame for reality and a fresh approach from us.
The second tier world is paradoxical. Godel’s theorem proved mathematically that there are limits to certainty – not just that there is stuff we don’t know, but there is stuff that is not capable of being defined. The certainties that our fear-based thinking systems drove us to seek do not exist and we should be grateful for that. A universe of certainties would constrain what is possible. A universe of paradox makes space for creation, for us to explore the infinite potential of our being.
The second tier world is complex, filled with interactions that are beyond what we can analyse, the VUCA world of volatility, unpredictability, complexity and ambiguity. It calls for new tools and new relationships. It is not only we as individuals who must learn Being. Our organisations and our societies too must relegate the lower harmonics of emotional reactivity to the domains for which they evolved – fighting tigers, protecting offspring and avoiding collisions with buses. We cannot control the universe but we can learn the agility, adaptability, flexibility and awareness that will enable us to thrive. VUCA is not a threat. It is a prompt for us to rise into a new glory as we surf the wave of existence. Being is a reality for organisations too, but it demands that they become organismic, not mechanistic. Previously we built corporations as great machines with levers and engines. Now we must build them as bodies, with cells in coherent and self-organising collaboration. That is the lesson of evolution. That is the requirement if we wish to shift to the next level. It is not inevitable and will not happen by itself. We are now an active component in that shift. For it to happen, we must choose it.
Active participatory consciousness
What is the nature of that active participation? What supports it? Where does it arise from? What is the scientific reality that underpins it and which extends from the model I am presenting. More than that, how does it work and what can we do with it?
All through human existence people have believed that they have a relationship with the greater reality. The conceptual frame of that relationship takes many forms – the direct connection of a shaman, sacrificial submission to a power-god, prayer for intervention to a benevolent father – but one aspect has been consistent. There is a fundamental expectation that we can affect that reality.
What I write from here on is for those who are willing to engage with such a potential. If your belief system excludes that then you will be unlikely to find what follows of any interest. If not you may find it very exciting because it adds a whole new dimension to 2nd tier existence. Actually, it is 2nd tier being.
Consciousness is a driving and unifying impulse that shapes creation. There is every reason to believe that the information-memory about all that is, is as vast and complete as all that is; you might think of the biblical image “every sparrow that falls”. Not only is it complete, it is connected, everything to everything else. There is an experimentally validated phenomenon in physics called quantum entanglement which demonstrates such connection at the level of the smallest of particles. There is no physical proof that this takes place at larger scales, let alone at the scale of the all, but there is no reason to doubt that it does so.
How does that show up and what does that mean for you and me? To grasp that requires a fresh viewpoint on what our bodies are and how they function. The scientifically provable part of the answer is that there are multiple mechanisms that support the internal coherence of our awareness. When I say awareness I do not only mean that which takes place in your cognition – quite the reverse. The brain is the most important organ in your body – according to the brain. We have unfortunately bought into that perception which has been supported by a philosophical and scientific perspective that could not perceive the wholeness of our form and did not see or understand the way that the heart works or the connectivity of our organs. This despite the fact that a scientist with a hangover knows as well as you do that your liver affects your awareness.
Your body is mind all over
The first part of this reality to grasp is that the body is mind all over. The brain is the information collector, the analyser and potentially the synthesiser of that awareness into voice. It can be the delivery mechanism for what we know. That is quite different from it being the source and repository of that knowing, which it quite simply is not. The second part is to fully appreciate how much information that whole-body awareness is providing to us. The coherence mechanisms just referred to are highly sensitive to very small fluctuations in energy.
The third part is the clincher. I warned early on that we have to engage with the flow of energy in and out of the body, using the interchange of electrons as an example. In practice there are multiple flows, and reason to believe that not all of these have mechanisms that science can detect. My personal journey with this scientific enquiry began when I had a profound experience of specific psychic knowing, created under witnessed and quite well-controlled conditions. I was forced to recognise that I had just done something that my scientific upbringing said was not possible and that my rationalist mind-set could not compute. “The Science of Possibility” is the result of a thirty-year journey to construct a satisfactory explanation.
There is much more in the book about psychic awareness in multiple forms, about intuition and about awareness outside time (including precognitition). This is not only a challenge to scientific theory but to its practice. Science demands what is measurable, but has nothing to measure. It does not have a theoretical framework for the way in which information might be transmitted, so no hope of constructing an “apparatus” that would measure it. The only apparatus that detects thought-field information is called Jon, or Jackie, or Joe or Jemima, which makes it subjective and therefore not, as the method would have it, scientific.
We have no other alternative but to accept what people say. And what people say is that they have awareness of thoughts, other beings, non-incarnated consciousness and much besides. They say it in so many ways that the human evidence base is deep, wide and long-term. It works because, as said, the coherence mechanisms in the body are highly sensitive to tiny fluctuations in energy, and to the information which is associated with the energy. Another downfall of the “everything is energy” non-explanation is that it deprives us of discrimination. Consciousness is not just energy. It is information too. At this time we have no way to tell the energy and information apart and since the information is connected across the entire universe it is likely that we never will. Deal with it!
Your body as transceiver
Because of those coherence mechanisms, our entire body is a detector for the information field, picking up fluctuations, sensing other people’s thoughts and able, with training and potentially at will, to access anything that you choose – certainly across space and possibly across time. I was slightly trained to do this and I trained others in the rudiments. I know many people vastly more skilled and trained than I am. This is the reality that we live in and the only questions are whether we accept that, whether we engage with it and how much we use it.
Everything that you think comes through a brain that we barely understand, using memory, visualisation, sensing, pattern-recognition and imagination. Unfortunately everything that you might detect in non-ordinary reality arrives via the same channels, presenting a challenge to differentiate between imagination, internal knowledge from the subconscious and external knowledge from the wider field. Deal with that too!
You can choose what to connect with. You are a receiver for everything in the information field, with built-in addressing mechanisms that no-one understands but which work in practice. If there are limits, no-one knows what they are so there is a very, very big space for us to expand into. Merely that awareness of everything, is potentially transformative to what human beings are. It is also a major contribution to the second tier reality because instead of having to figure out the rules, predict the unpredictable and plan the long-term linear future we have the option to be flexible, agile and responsive. We can choose individually and in every moment based on what we know that we know, even when we don’t know how we know it. We also open up the space for collective intelligence and crowdocracy (another topic well worthy of its own examination) because together we are not a small satellite dish but more like a radio telescope array. And we don’t need to look for consensus because we trust that each cell contributes what it needs to. Our bodies do this. Why shouldn’t we?
And there’s more
Yet that contribution to second tier is not the whole or even the best of it. This is because there is scientific proof of psychokinesis. On my youtube channel is a short extract (1:24) from the work of the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) laboratory, now ICRL. It demonstrates powerfully that our minds can influence the physical world through our choices. Do you need to hear that again? Our choices directly affect the material world.
Now take that statement and position it within a chaotic, fractal, emerging, unfolding, self-creative universe. Place yourself as an active, information-contributing element in that field and take the image from chaos theory of the butterfly in Hawaii whose wing-beat triggers the shift which causes a hurricane in Japan. It is hard for us to understand the power of the small, but the universe, huge as it is, is energetic and sensitive too because information has no mass, no inertia and no resistance to our impulse, less than the air to the butterfly.
These facts provide a new context for connection with nature, prayer, creative visualisation, not to mention the over-simplified and hyped “Law of Attraction”. They offer the possibility that we can take an active part in creating the future. In second tier terms they place our being inside the creative zone, able to engage with the universe. Enlightenment is a pale echo of what is on offer, limited as it is to an upper-left, experiential state. Potency is at hand, if we can learn the operating system. I have first-hand experience of how this can work in healing. That itself is transformational, but it is only the start.
The Science of Teal and Turquoise
My core message and that of “Science of Possibility” is that consciousness is the driver, the underlying impulse that drives the construction and emergence of the material world, and that it is the mechanism through which connectedness of all things takes effect. My strapline is “Patterns of Connected Consciousness” and is an attempt to engage with Gregory Bateson’s key question “What pattern connects the crab to the lobster and the orchid to the primrose and all the four of them to me? And me to you”. It reflects two of his titles “Mind and Nature” and “Steps to an Ecology of Mind”
In the integral and developing consciousness world, the conversation is still caught in the gulf between paradigms. There is the scientific one that regards mind and consciousness as an emergent property of material existence – and sometimes treats it as an aberration or a psychosis. There is another which recognises the value of non-ordinary reality experiences and embraces, to one degree or another, the direct relationship between human consciousness and nature. It embraces the mystical, but largely as an inner phenomenon.
By and large, humanity – even integrally informed humanity – is still caught in this dilemma, finding it difficult to integrate the material and non-material polarity and to make one world out of two. There is a modern shamanism that is still in the early stages of evolution, re-entering the external connectedness and an active mysticism. There are those who are able to directly enter the communion with animals, plants as well as converse with the myriad forms of non-incarnated consciousness. Some of these people can directly share these experiences and accomplish the journeys jointly, seeing what each other sees. Some individuals can see and detect the ebb and flow of consciousness in others, or work directly with the biomedical arena. Some are exploring what I would term bodymind surgery – directly affecting the consciousness of another to trigger healing from within. Most of the people I am aware of who are doing such work are not published, not interested in being and not likely to be. Even the stories I tell in “Science of Possibility” are a decade behind the action that I witness, and I am only in touch personally with a small fringe of what is happening – enough however, to see how real it is.
The impelling, evolving, co-creative intelligence of the “all” breaks our conceptual boundaries. Typically we struggle with being the one in oneness. In oneness we are all infinite beings with a capacity for infinite awareness and unbounded connection. I don’t know how to live from that place and witness few who do. If you will forgive the paradox, some people are better at oneness than others. Can you conceive what it would be like to live your life and engage with the world from a place of infinite being, not from a meditation cushion but from the ongoing reality of daily waking life. What kind of awareness will that take? Howe will we develop it and what kind of schools would teach it to our children?
The shift from first to second tier is critical and it starts with Yellow-Teal. Green is very interior-focused – a necessary stage in building our conscious awareness but also a potential trap. If you focus only on interior consciousness, you can miss what is happening in the universe. And where science sees consciousness as a by-product, Green may treat it as an experience and as a separate reality, not as a part of the same reality that the body lives in. It may see spirits and souls as inhabitants of our bodies, when the facts I am sharing suggest that spirits and souls create bodies. In turn that may lead to the desire to go directly to Turquoise and to play in the experiential oneness. That is very enticing. The risk is that we abandon the planet to its fate and skip the steps which will be necessary to keep our bodies alive. Spiral Dynamics and Integral tell us clearly that stages cannot be skipped. We have to engage with Teal.
Another paradox; the cognitive and analytical will become less important as we embrace our whole-body awareness and our ability to “channel” the field into our frame of reality. We will know more of what we know without having to figure it out. I don’t know if any of this can make any sense if you haven’t glimpsed the experience, but this is the reality that we play with when we do constellations work and deep democracy. It is the field from which Presencing and the U emerge. Our culture is already beginning to touch and establish the collective experience. At the same time I am describing a cognitive shift that unlocks the door to that reality. The integral description of Teal, in its Wilberian focus on the psychological journey, tends to miss the intense functionality of Graves-Beck Yellow. The VUCA problems affecting our world require active engagement. However much that may be underpinned by theory, informed by awareness, supported by recognition of our connectedness with the natural world and even assisted by our prayers, U-sensing and creative visualisations, it will demand support in the material and human worlds. In entering Teal, the humans with first-tier worldviews still exist. The tensions between efficiency, economics, processes and human values don’t magically disappear. We have to engage our awareness and then work with them. All of this must be harmonised, blended, transcended, included and integrated.
Finding how to live that connected reality is the journey. I am on it and maybe you are too. Engaging with nature will be both part of the way and an outcome. The story goes that the Buddha, asked whether he was a man or a god, replied “I am awake”. Stepping outside of the confines of the linear-conscious mind while being in full awakeness is a journey out of cognition and into direct awareness. Living that way challenges everything that we were all brought up, schooled and indoctrinated to believe about the way the world is. It calls for more than meditation. The “special spaces” that we create there are in part a training ground. Living it is the playing field. We will make our individual choices but it will also have to be a collective journey because we are much more potent when we break the boundaries together. We dismantle each other’s blocks as we move. Engaging with the whole of nature and a post-modern shamanistic experience in the collective being is to take nature, biomimicry and organic life into the interior fabric of our existence and to share it. Knowledge takes us to the doorway. The exploration begins with questions and lives in awareness and choice, not in answers. We have barely begun, hardly glimpsed Second Tier and certainly not established a Teal reality, but I hope that you are as excited with the depth and intensity of the potential as I am.
So what else is possible?
21st April 2016
About the Author
Jon Freeman is a generalist in an age of over-specialization, with a passion for the big, overarching, systemic picture of our world. He is Spiral Dynamics thought leader and trainer who applies this knowledge in organisational reinvention. As the visionary futurist author of “Science of Possibility” and “Reinventing Capitalism”, his passion is to change our collective understanding of reality through new perspectives on how science and spiritual experience connect, how to make money work for humanity and how our organisational and societal systems can function more sustainably, humanly and effectively.