Physics and Consciousness: addendum (13)

What is Reality?

It seems to me that we can all talk about (lower case r) reality, but that (upper case R) Reality is another consideration. Many people have stated similarly over centuries of thinking and meditating on such things.

In Buddhism there are four questions called the “unanswerables.” They are four questions that the Buddha refused to answer and furthermore said are not worth our consideration because the answer will always be partial and never satisfying. They all essentially were about Reality. They were ontological.

Dali-Lama-Complex-McLeod-Ganj-2012-05-09-15-24-49-as-Smart-Object-1But, “what is Reality,” is actually a vexing question, and so Buddhist masters made their forays into this unanswerable, yet it’s true, one is left unsatisfied. And maybe that’s an important clue for us? Capital R Reality is not predicated upon satisfaction as we experience and therefore measure reality. But, lower case r reality is as well as its opposite: unsatisfactory or displeasure.

In the context of Physics and Consciousness, one can ask, “what is Reality/reality?” Quantum mechanics informs us that “as you desire so it is.” At least this is what the observer factor and its effect upon that which can be observed has discovered. The quantum world says, “You want to discover a smaller particle? Here! There are as many as you want.” Over 200 “particles” have been “observed.” And there will be more as long as we keep looking for them.

In the consciousness world the same is so. Look for trouble and you’ll find it or it will find you. Look for something to be angry about our petty about or happy and appreciative about and you will find it. So the truth is that “what is Reality?” is in fact an unanswerable question because the answer will be what we desire or are looking for or makes sense in that moment, in that set of circumstances, in that (lower case r) reality.

blowing bubblesWhat is Consciousness?
One wonders if that is an easier question. First we have to define our term, then agree that within a certain conversation, or scheme of thought, or paradigm that everyone agrees upon that definition. To define something is to reduce it to a set of tangibles. Then how does that serve Consciousness? and doe it give us answer that is unalterable? Probably not. Then our internal syllogism has given us another clue: consciousness and the determination of r/Reality seem intertwined, bound together as perceiver and perception. (Now we are getting to the core of something!)

What is Beingness?
Well, first we removed the chair of tangibility with r/Reality, then we removed the rug of Consciousness. So, what can be said about Beingness? Just as much as the other two.

Lower case r reality is our every day existence, every sensation, thought impulse, and action. Lower case r reality is Nature, relation, a sense of time-place-here-there-now-then-and to come. These are real, no one denies that, and to question or philosophize otherwise will win you a definitive clap in a Buddhist debate but outside of those halls is a waste of time. Why? because we are living a very real reality. What we can agree upon as intelligent observers is that “my reality” is quite self-made. Again, what we look for we can find.

We’ve determined that upper case R Reality is somehow true in a different way than the truths that we tell ourselves. Somehow Reality invites us to smile at the temporariness or contrivance of the truths that we tell ourselves, or to release ourself from the limiting smallness of our ideas of personal truth. Upper case R Reality is like space holding a star. Equally, it holds our self determined realities in relativity, perspective, and a wider inclusive view.

We’ve also determined that Consciousness is every kind of awareness, perception, and interaction. There is no type of awareness that is not consciousness, thus Consciousness is as wide as space, like Reality.

Fiery explosionBeingness
In quantum mechanics, beingness is the potency within. The scale of “within what?” is unimportant because within everything, even space, is potency undiscovered and usually unconsidered. Thus beingness is the potency within any reality/Reality, and the potency within any awareness. Potency conveys the idea of vital, vibrant, contained but once loosed not containable again. Potency helps us gain an inkling of Beingness as the something already present, unalterable as itself, pervasively everywhere at all times and in all expressions of life. The most profound is the most understated and readily available.

light_bodySo it is within quantum physics with quarks, the Boson Higgs particle, and nuclear forces.; so it is with the Uncertainty Principle, and so it is with ourself. The potency of human Beingness is unfathomable because we – you and I – do not stop to engage it in a way that unlocks its potency. We are satisfied with our reality (complain or not). Being so satisfied, the potency of a greater unlocked Reality cannot be released. We are unwilling to trade our reality for Consciousness and the unfathomed Reality of Being.

Related posts: All 12 Physics and Consciousness posts.


About Donna Mitchell-Moniak

See for meditations and free online meditation training. Visit for more information.
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