Professor Bernard Carr: Can Extended Science Bridge the Worlds of Matter, Mind and Spirit?
You are warmly invited to a meeting of the London Group of the Scientific and Medical Network on
Monday, 19th July 2021. We are grateful to Sue Van Colle and Clive Jenkins who have kindly offered their Hampstead home
(7 minutes walk from Hampstead tube station) for this occasion:
25 Cannon Place (corner of Cannon Place and Squires Mount)
London NW3 1EH
Time: 7pm for 7:30pm start till 9:30pm
Cost: £10 paid on entrance
Please email me on [email protected] as early as possible so that I can anticipate numbers well in advance.
This will be a historic occasion on three counts: the first physical meeting of the SMN for over a year; a meeting on the very day that all pandemic-related restrictions will have been lifted; moreover, a talk by our own President, Professor Bernard Carr, Can an Extended Science Bridge the Worlds of Matter, Mind and Spirit? (Abstract below.)
Claudia Nielsen will be hosting the Virtual Meetings of the London Group bi-monthly, alternating with the Physical Meetings that I will be hosting. We all have our own treasured memories of the wonderful gatherings in Claudia’s London home before her recent move to the country. I feel that the best way for us to honour her unswerving dedication for over 20 years would be to continue with the highest standards of excellence and professionalism that she consistently maintained. Do please join us. Let’s put all lockdown and ‘locked-in’ inhibitions behind us now, move forward, and meet together again as a vibrant group.
But that’s no reason to throw all caution to the winds. Sue and Clive would prefer that all attenders will have been double vaccinated and will have taken a Covid-19 Lateral Flow Test (kit free from NHS via pharmacists) within the last two days.
ABSTRACT: Can an Extended Science Bridge the Worlds of Matter, Mind and Spirit?
All of us inhabit the three worlds of matter, mind, and spirit, although these terms are used in many different contexts. While everyone has a foot in all three worlds, the amount of time we spend in each one clearly varies, and most people are mainly drawn to one path. Nonetheless, it is important for some people – and indeed organizations such as the SMN – to follow all three paths because the different worlds are interconnected and a full understanding of the universe must surely embrace them all.
This theme has also been addressed in an important recent article by Marilyn Monk, where she describes the complementary roles of the scientist, poet and mystic. However, I have a somewhat different perspective from Marilyn about the relationship between the three worlds. She regards them as non-overlapping magisteria, so it is inappropriate to attempt to link them because they are already reconciled. By contrast, I argue that one should try to build bridges between them. For example, I regard psychical research as providing a bridge between matter and mind, transpersonal psychology as providing a bridge between mind and spirit, and the anthropic principle as providing a bridge between matter and spirit. However, this just reflects my personal interests and someone approaching the subject from the perspective of medicine or the arts would see a different set of bridges.
In reconciling these different views, I would argue that Marilyn is discussing the relationship between the three worlds from a personal perspective. In terms of one’s path in life, specialization is necessary because the evolution of humanity as a whole evidently depends upon individuals fulfilling their potential in some area of expertise. Nevertheless, a balanced life requires one to pursue all three paths to some extent and Marilyn is addressing the issue of how one reconciles the different functions from a practical perspective.
However, this is distinct from the issue of whether there is a conceptual link between the three worlds. In particular, can there be a new paradigm of science which links matter, mind and spirit explicitly? I’ve spent much of my life arguing for an extended (higher dimensional) physics which can accomplish this but – even if this wrong – it can be seen within the broader context of attempts to find a unifying paradigm, such as the Kabbalah, the perennial philosophy, and various forms of esoteric science. Indeed, I would argue that the possibility of such a paradigm underlies the postmaterialist science movement and Galileo Commission agenda.
Bernard Carr is Emeritus Professor of Mathematics and Astronomy at Queen Mary University of London. For his PhD, he studied the first second of the universe with Stephen Hawking at Cambridge University and Caltech. His professional area of research is cosmology and astrophysics and includes such topics as the early universe, black holes, dark matter, and the anthropic principle. He is a former chairman and current President of the Scientific and Medical Network and a former President of the Society for Psychical Research.
Bernard CarrEmeritus Professor, SMN President
Prof Bernard Carr is Emeritus Professor of Mathematics and Astronomy at Queen Mary University of London. For his PhD, he studied the first second of the universe with Stephen Hawking at Cambridge University and Caltech. His professional area of research is cosmology and astrophysics and includes such topics as the early universe, black holes, dark matter, and the anthropic principle. He is a former chairman and current President of the Scientific and Medical Network and a former President of the Society for Psychical Research.