Thursday, July 27, 2006
Hold on to your hats with this one. P. D. Ouspensky begins with a problem proposed by Kant--that 'space' and 'time' are simply constructs of consciousness--and runs with it. Boiled down to its barest argument, Tertium Organum suggests that the world we perceive is an artificiality; we cannot perceive the world as it is because our perception is self-limited. Lots of analogies about how two-dimensional beings would perceive three-dimensional objects passing through planes lead Ouspensky to suggest that we fail to understand what we see. His answer? What we perceive as 'time' is actually the movement of fourth-dimensional objects through our plane of existence. It is possible according to Ouspensky to achieve the consciousness required to understand the 'realm of causes,' because the technology exists in our mystical traditions going back millenia. The Fall of Adam and Eve actually marked the imprisonment in Matter of Spirit. We can liberate ourselves with proper training and devotion.
Elaborate bullshit or the key to higher consciousness? Doesn't matter to me so long as it entertains. I loved it. Any book capable of rationally marshalling disparate figures like Hegel, William James, Lao Tzu, Madame Blavatsky, Jacob Boehme, Sufi mystics, the Mahabarata, Plato, and Plotinus can't help but challenge a three-brained being.