Rick Rosner

5. In terms of your ideas related to cosmology and physics, at 10, you began thinking about the universe.  The reason for existence.  At 21, you came to a realization.  You note, “All the big theories are built around big equivalences.”  Namely, your realization of an equivalence between the operation of information in an individual consciousness and the operation of space & matter in the universe.  Both have self-consistency.  In addition to this, and later in response to a similar topic in Noesis 58, you state, “I believe in matter and space as information held in some vast awareness…” What do you mean by these?  In particular, the idea of a great equivalence.  How have you developed the idea from the original equivalence to the present day? 

I’ve continued to think about this stuff and think I have a pretty good theoretical framework, though it needs more math.

I believe that it’s almost impossible to have a large, self-consistent system of information without that system having some degree of consciousness – probably a high degree. Consciousness can be characterized as every part of a system knowing what’s going on, more or less, with every other part of the system, within a framework that assigns (emotional) values to events perceived by the system. (Of course there are processes which are peripheral to consciousness – most of the time, we’re not aware of the finer points of breathing or walking or why we like looking at cat videos and butts.)

Plenty of people think that the universe is a massive processor of information. Quantum mechanics mathematicizes the limitations of the universe’s information-processing ability. Being finite, the universe cannot observe itself with infinite precision.

6. Provided the nature of these particular equivalences, especially related to the universe, do you have a mathematical model to represent this equivalence?  Furthermore, do you have a layman analogy for this equivalence?

I think the most efficient model of the information contained in a complex, self-contained and self-consistent system of information looks like the universe – locally three-dimensional (spatially) with linear time and particles and forces that transact business more or less the way they do in the universe itself.

I don’t believe in the big bang – instead, I believe that what looks like a big bang is kind of a trick of perspective, based on the universe being made of information. Parts of the universe which have less information in common with us are more distant and red-shifted. The apparent age of the universe is a measure of the amount of information it contains (or has in play). Somewhat similarly, train tracks don’t really touch at the horizon.

Kind of picture the universe as being at a slow boil. Some parts are energy-rich and expanding, while other parts are burned out and pushed to the outskirts by the expanding regions, waiting for their chance to expand again.

Developmental stages

Jean Gebser’s structures of consciousness:

1. Archaic

2. Magic

3. Mythic

4. Mental

5. Integral

Fowler’s stages of faith development:

  • Stage 0“Primal or Undifferentiated” faith (birth to 2 years), is characterized by an early learning of the safety of their environment (i.e. warm, safe and secure vs. hurt, neglect and abuse). If consistent nurture is experienced, one will develop a sense of trust and safety about the universe and the divine. Conversely, negative experiences will cause one to develop distrust with the universe and the divine. Transition to the next stage begins with integration of thought and languages which facilitates the use of symbols in speech and play.
  • Stage 1“Intuitive-Projective” faith (ages of three to seven), is characterized by the psyche’s unprotected exposure to the Unconscious, and marked by a relative fluidity of thought patterns. [1] Religion is learned mainly through experiences, stories, images, and the people that one comes in contact with.
  • Stage 2“Mythic-Literal” faith (mostly in school children), stage two persons have a strong belief in the justice and reciprocity of the universe, and their deities are almost always anthropomorphic. During this time metaphors and symbolic language are often misunderstood and are taken literally.
  • Stage 3“Synthetic-Conventional” faith (arising in adolescence; aged 12 to adulthood) characterized by conformity to religious authority and the development of a personal identity. Any conflicts with one’s beliefs are ignored at this stage due to the fear of threat from inconsistencies.
  • Stage 4“Individuative-Reflective” faith (usually mid-twenties to late thirties) a stage of angst and struggle. The individual takes personal responsibility for his or her beliefs and feelings. As one is able to reflect on one’s own beliefs, there is an openness to a new complexity of faith, but this also increases the awareness of conflicts in one’s belief.
  • Stage 5“Conjunctive” faith (mid-life crisis) acknowledges paradox and transcendence relating reality behind the symbols of inherited systems. The individual resolves conflicts from previous stages by a complex understanding of a multidimensional, interdependent “truth” that cannot be explained by any particular statement.
  • Stage 6“Universalizing” faith, or what some might call “enlightenment.” The individual would treat any person with compassion as he or she views people as from a universal community, and should be treated with universal principles of love and justice.

Piaget’s theory of cognitive development is primarily known as a developmental stage theory, but, in fact, it deals with the nature of knowledge itself and how humans come gradually to acquire, construct, and use it.

Kieran Egan has proposed five stages of understanding: “somatic”, “mythic”, “romantic”, “philosophic”, and “ironic”, which is developed through cognitive tools such as “stories”, “binary oppositions”, “fantasy” and “rhyme, rhythm, and meter” to enhance memorization to develop a long-lasting learning capacity.

Lawrence Kohlberg developed three stages of moral development: “Preconventional”, “Conventional” and “Postconventional”. Each level is composed of two orientation stages, with a total of six orientation stages: (1) “Punishment-Obedience”, (2) “Instrumental Relativist”, (3) “Good Boy-Nice Girl”, (4) “Law and Order”, (5) “Social Contact”, and (6) “Universal Ethical Principle”.

Jane Loevinger’s stages of ego development occur through “an evolution of stages”. “First is the Presocial Stage followed by the Symbiotic Stage, Impulsive Stage, Self-Protective Stage, Conformist Stage, Self-Aware Level: Transition from Conformist to Conscientious Stage, Individualistic Level: Transition from Conscientious to the Autonomous Stage, Conformist Stage, and Integrated Stage”.