The book remains uncompleted and this is the last post. Tomorrow, we start a new topic.
CHAPTER 11: DIMENSIONS OF WORK
In Chapter 2, I discussed the concepts of force, energy and work. Here I am going to finish that discussion by considering the several dimensions over which forces can be applied so to create work in the service of anabolic transformation.
The subject of dimensions is frequently discussed in Fourth Way literature. Both Ouspensky and Bennett (and their students) dedicated a significant amount of time to trying to understand and apply knowledge of this most important subject to the Work.1,2,3 I am going to continue this tradition.
The English word, dimension, is derived from the Latin roots di + metiri, meaning to measure out. Though many definitions are listed, the one most appropriate to our needs is: an attribute or status that may be seen as inhering in or characterizing an abstract thing, an aspect. In other words, dimensions are the inherent avenues provided for the expression of the essentially vibratory energy of the universe as it moves under cosmic law, always directed by cosmic will.
This particular definition coincides with the Hermetic notion that the underlying foundation of Creation is mental, ‘All is Mind’. For the Hermetic philosopher, the universe manifests because the First Cause ‘assigned it dimension’ so to differentiate one portion from another.
Dimensions can also be characterized as the limits placed upon the set of manifestations possible in the System, existence or the universe. For example, all life forms move invariably from birth to death without exception. Heat flows from a higher temperature to a lower.
Commonly, people recognize two discrete dimensions defining their existence: space (length, width, height) and time. Eventhough, mathematically, every point in the universe can be related to a common spatial origin and time, i.e., (x,y,z,t), the great majority of persons do not really the understand the words space and time. Even the great Christian scholar, St. Augustine wrote in his book, CONFESSIONS,
“But what in discourse do we mention more familiarly and knowingly than time? And we understand, when we speak of it; we understand also, when we hear of it spoken of by another. What then is time? If no one asks me, I know; if I wish to explain it to one who asketh, I know not.”
Previously we spoke of the conflict between Boltzmann and Poincare over whether time is reversible or irreversible. The situation is no different with space.
In order to make some sense out of this quagmire, I am going to outline the dimensional parameters of the visible universe in a straightforward and logical manner beginning with the concept of time.
I want you to imagine in your minds eye a Cartesian coordinate system of three perpendicular or orthoganal axes (see figure 37). Please label the vertical y-axis with the word, clock time.
Clock time is exactly what it says. Clock time represents the dynamic, reversible, cyclic time of Poincaré, Bohr and Einstein I spoke of previously. Clock time is the experiential dimension represented the recurring cycles of any repetitive process. Clock time can be represented by the metered motion in space of a second hand about an axis of a very accurate stopwatch. Clock time can be expressed by the period of duration of consciousness required for a particular chemical reaction to change color. Clock time can be of biological origin.
Choice, Consciousness And Quantum Mechanics
Having looked pragmatically at consciousness and its manifestations in macroscopic life from the Gurdjieffian perspective, it is useful to move onto a more fundamental analysis based upon the principles of quantum mechanics. In a sense, we again move from the macrocosmos to the microcosmos, from events describable in terms of large-scale human behaviors to local events occurring within specific portions of the human brain. In other words, we enter the confusing domain of the mind-body problem!
Understanding what appears to be a mind-brain dichotomy has troubled philosophers, priests and scientists at least since the time of Descartes. Rene Descartes, a 17th century French philosopher, divided all of nature into two essentially independent realms, thought and matter, thought did not directly affect the motion of material objects. The only place where thought was allowed to affect matter was in the ‘seat of the soul’, the pineal gland. Everywhere else, the motion of material objects was governed only by unmutable mathematical laws.
1. Bennett, JG, DRAMATIC UNIVERSE,
2. Ouspensky, PD, IN SEARCH OF THE MIRACULOUS, Harcourt, Brace & World, New York, 1949.
3. Blake, AGE, SEMINAR ON TIME, Claymont Communications, Charles Town, West Virginia, 1980.
CHAPTER 12: WORK EXERCISES