Gregg Braden and the Rise of New Age Scientism (Scientism Critique: Part 3)
This booklet is part three of a three-part series on my scientism critique. The two first were called: Richard Dawkins and the Rise of Atheist Scientism (Scientism Critique: Part 1) and, Rupert Sheldrake and the Rise of Neo-Lysenkoism (Scientism Critique: Part 2).
I have earlier in my work treated new age “scientists” quite superficial, simply because I don´t want to pay time, energy and respect to people who only can be described as con artists. But in order to get the full picture of this text series, I will make an exception with Gregg Braden. I will in detail show what it is, a typical New Age “scientist” is doing.
The text can be read separately. However, the complete context of the text can´t be fully understood without having read the two first parts.
The text is divided into the following parts (in the PDF version you can find page numbers):
What is Scientism?
Braden´s “scientific method"
The God Code
The Divine Matrix
Conclusive Comments on Braden
A Short History of the American Con Artist
On his website Gregg Braden is presented like this:
Gregg Braden is a five-time New York Times best-selling author, scientist, international educator and renowned as a pioneer in the emerging paradigm based in science, spirituality, social policy and human potential.
From 1979 to 1991 Gregg worked as a problem solver during times of crisis for Fortune 500 companies, including Cisco Systems, where he became the first Technical Operations Manager in 1991. He continues problem-solving today as his work reveals deep insights into our origin, our potential, and how these understandings inform the policies underlying everyday life and the emerging world. To date his research has led to 15 film credits and 12 award-winning books now published in over 40 languages.
The United Kingdom’s Watkins Journal lists Gregg among the top 100 of “the world’s most spiritually influential living people” for the 7th consecutive year, and he is a 2020 nominee for the prestigious Templeton Award, established to honor “outstanding individuals who have devoted their talents to expanding our vision of human purpose and ultimate reality.”
Gregg is a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and is active with visionary organizations including the HeartMath Global Coherence Initiative and The Arlington Institute. He has presented his discoveries in over 30 countries on six continents and has been invited to speak to The United Nations, Fortune 500 companies and the U. S. military.
I will, for the case of understanding the scientistic seduction surrounding Gregg Braden, also mention the following highlights of Braden´s career (as written on his website):
Note how technical/instrumental everything Braden has worked with is. He hasn´t made any work within the arts and humanities, which normally would be the place where spirituality is treated. Not that this matters in a general sense, but it is something that characterizes his work, and which is quite central in my scientism critique. In an article called: Humanity at a Crossroads - A Conversation with Gregg Braden, by John David Mann, Mann asks Braden:
MANN: Gregg, does the work you’re doing with spirituality and the power of thought represent a break from your technical, corporate past, or is it a continuation of that past?
BRADEN: I see it as a clear progression. I have always had the belief that there was no difference between science and spirituality, that when we study chemistry and physics, we’re learning about the nuts and bolts of how God works in the world. I was born and raised in northern Missouri in a relatively conservative Midwestern community; these were not the kind of things people talked about every day. But I assumed everyone thought pretty much along these same lines and believed what I believed. As I soon learned, nothing could be further from the truth. When I went to work in the corporate world, I discovered that most people believed science and spirituality were mutually exclusive—that we had to follow the path of science or the path of spirituality, we couldn’t do both together.
It is plain weird to read how Braden treats spirituality as a technical problem. The world of flowers, rivers, mountains, moon, stars, art and poetry, are completely absent in Braden´s technological reductive world, despite that these phenomena are quite central in spirituality.
Below is a list of his works:
As you can see, the books have been published over a period of 20 years, or more precisely: 25 years. There are namely two earlier books not mentioned: Awakening To Zero Point: The Collective Initiation (1995), Walking Between the Worlds: The Science of Compassion (1997).
Each of the books are presented as if they are shattering new scientific discoveries, which will bring about a “paradigm shift” in science. Each book presents a new revolutionary discovery made by Braden, or discoveries, which Braden postulates to have happened, but which we never have heard about. If we should take that at face value (because his discoveries are quite extraordinary), he would have won several Nobel prizes. The fact is that it seems like he is writing science fiction, and therefore needs to come up with a new story every time.
For example, after The God Code, he continued with new “discoveries”. The God Code seems to be completely forgotten in his next books. If The God Code in fact proved the discovery that God´s name is written in Hebrew in our DNA, it would have been a world revolutionary discovery, which any scientist would have had to continue making research and presentations of. But in Braden´s next book he is into something new.
In this booklet I will concentrate on three books: The God Code, The Divine Matrix and The Science of Self-Empowerment.
In the above-mentioned article, Humanity at a Crossroads - A Conversation with Gregg Braden, you´ll find a presentation of Braden you often hear. It says:
Gregg Braden spans two worlds. His ability to find innovative solutions to complex problems led to successful careers as a computer geologist for Phillips Petroleum during the 1970’s energy crisis, and in the 1980’s as a senior computer systems designer for Martin Marietta Aerospace during the last years of the Cold War. In 1991 he became the first Technical Operations Manager for Cisco Systems. At the same time, Gregg has spent months over the past twenty years in some of the most remote, pristine places on Earth, in the monasteries of Bolivia, Peru, Nepal, India and Tibet, exploring connections between the cutting edge of quantum science and the core of ancient spiritual traditions. (“While my colleagues would take a week at a seaside resort,” says Gregg, “my idea of a vacation was a twenty-two-day pilgrimage into the Tibetan plateau at 17,000 feet above sea level.”) […]
In The God Code Braden writes:
The God Code is the result of 12 years of research and the personal quest for a principle of human unity that is so deep, and so tangible, that it can not be denied. Since 1986, my search has led me into temples, villages, and monasteries hidden in some of the most pristine, isolated, and remote locations remaining on Earth today. In these places I´ve met dedicated individuals who consider in their duty in life, as well as an honor, to preserve the memories of our species and the history of the world (page xvii).
In The Divine Matrix he writes:
The Divine Matrix is a result of more than 20 years of research, as well as my personal journey to make sense of the great secret held in our most ancient, mystical, and cherished traditions […] (page xxiv).
The God Code was published in 2004 and The Divine Matrix was published three years later, in 2007. So, the years of his “research” seem to overlap. His years of “research” (and his journeys to remote monasteries, etc.) have in other words included both of these books. What about his earlier books? And the books in between? And the following books? Each of them seems to have a new science topic. Are these also results of his “20 years of research”?
The stories of his journeys (which in fact just are vacations) are something he repeats again and again. It is only these stories that bring a certain degree of “reality” into his reductive instrumental language. I will return to these journeys in the conclusion, but will just mention, that the stories are important in his overall mantra about “bridging ancient wisdom and science”. This bridge is in reality the same as a reduction of ancient wisdom to New Age scientism. And this basically means a destruction of these traditions in themselves. He is a perfect example of New Age colonialism and cultural appropriation.
What is Scientism?
I will begin by giving a short summary of the two previous texts on Richard Dawkins and Rupert Sheldrake.
Scientism is the ideology of science. Scientism has therefore nothing whatever to do with the actual scientific method, which scientists and researchers are using all over the world. Both New Age scientism and atheist scientism are common in overestimating the importance of science, for example by claiming:
1) that philosophy and religion need to be founded in science.
2) that certain single branches of science can give an explanation of everything.
3) that certain single branches of science are self-sufficient and that philosophy and religion are superfluous.
Scientism covers the following concepts: reductionism, pseudoskepticism and pseudoscience.
Reductionism is the idea that one or the other single branch of science can give an explanation of everything. A reductionism is a philosophical viewpoint and not a scientific theory. It tries to answer fundamental philosophical questions by explaining them in terms of, for example: biology, psychology, or sociology. It does this by reducing certain phenomena to phenomena of another type. It says: “these phenomena (for example: subjective experiences) are in reality nothing else than another type of phenomena (for example: chemical reactions in the brain, or: a social construction)”. Reductionism gains success through the thought distortion Truth by Authority. It lends its success from the authority of science. It does this by claiming that what it says is science, and therefore proved to be true. In essence, reductionism reduces the Wholeness to the part(s). Its main problem is therefore to explain the Wholeness. Reductionism is present in both atheist scientism and new age scientism.
A central feature in Braden´s books is precisely the idea that science should answer philosophical questions. In the following quotes from The New Science of Self-empowerment – Awakening the New Human Story, you can see this demonstrated in the below quotes. If you read my article: How Yuval Noah Harari Removed the History of Western Philosophy From His Transhumanist Propaganda Tale, you can see how Braden in the same way completely ignores philosophy and all the answers provided in the history of philosophy. It borders to falsification of history. Braden writes:
Before Origin of Species, there were few sources to turn to when it came to answering life´s biggest questions. Prior to the mid-19th century, the philosophical questions of life, such as Where do we come from? Why are we here? and How do we make life better? were relegated to religion and traditional folklore. With the publication of Darwin´s first book, this changed. The theory of evolution offered a new story to answer life´s big questions that didn´t require biblical interpretations or religious teachings (page 20).
Today, over 150 years after Charles Darwin first published his theory, the best scientists of the modern world, from the best universities of our time, having access to the most funding in research history and using the most advanced technology ever available, are still struggling to prove the viability of this theory in general, and specifically when it comes to humans.
In essence, the unanswered questions are:
As we´ll see in the sections that follow, new discoveries are making it necessary to rethink the way we´ve answered both these questions in the past (page 22)
In the book Braden puts up some keys that should awakening us to “the new human story”, which basically is Braden´s own invented pseudoscience (building on the American New Thought movement – more about that later). The first key is:
In the presence of the greatest technological advancements of the modern world, science still cannot answer the most fundamental question of our existence: Who are we? (page xi)
Note that Braden takes it for granted, that science (and therefore not philosophy) should answer the most fundamental questions of our existence.
The second key is:
Everything from our self-esteem to our self-worth, our sense of confidence, our well-being, and our sense of safety, as well as the way we see the world and other people, stems from our answer to the question Who are we? (page xiii)
The third key is:
By allowing new discoveries to lead to the new stories they tell, rather than forcing them into a predetermined framework of ideas, we may, at last, answer the most important questions of our existence (page xv).
The fourth key is:
New DNA evidence suggests that we´re the result of an intentional act of creation that has imbued us with extraordinary abilities of intuition, compassion, empathy, love, and self-healing (page xviii)
The fourth key is Braden´s own pseudoscientific fiction (which is mixed with arguments from intelligent design advocates). When reading Braden with a critical distance, you will also quickly discover that intuition, compassion, etc., in Braden´s world means subjectivism. Furthermore: a red thread through his book is that we must learn a new way of thinking, that the past needs to be redefined, etc. This vocabulary comes from the teachings of The New Thought Movement – see my article: A Critique of the New Thought Movement and the Law of Attraction.
In my ebook on Rupert Sheldrake I have already shown, that new age is a product of the counterculture movement and postmodernism. In order to understand what it is Braden is a part of, it is necessary to take a look at the background.
Postmodernism is the old left-wing Stalinism in new clothing. Sheldrake is openly supporting Stalinist Neo-Lysenkoism, and New Age is also a product of this. The New Thought movement is as near to a modern Orwellian thought police as you can imagine. The rulers in Orwell´s dystopian novel 1981 created a language they called NewSpeak. It was a brainwashing technique. It worked by using the thought distortions: False Dichotomy and Guilt by Association. The False Dichotomy consisted in the dichotomy: old thinking (false thinking) and new thinking (true thinking). Guilt by Association was used by applying the term “Thought Crime” to old thinking. Everytime someone used vocabulary from old thinking they came to associate it with the term Thought Crime. And the Rulers had a thought police that hunted thought criminals.
New Thought is the American religious movement which has created the foundation for the positive thinking movement. And who can argue against “positive thinking”? However, the critique arises when you ask what precisely this “positive” consists in. The social critic Barbara Ehrenreich has persuasively argued that the all-positive approach, with its rejection of the possibility of failure, helped bring on our present financial crises. The psychological evidence, apparently backed by “ancient wisdom”, certainly suggests that positive thinking is not the recipe for success that it purports to be.
Americans are a "positive" people - cheerful, optimistic, and upbeat: This is their reputation as well as their self-image. But more than a temperament, being positive is the key to getting success and prosperity. Or so we are told.
In the utterly original debunking book Bright-Sided – How Positive Thinking is Undermining America, Barbara Ehrenreich confronts the false promises of positive thinking and shows its reach into every corner of American life, from Evangelical megachurches to the medical establishment, and, worst of all, to the business community, where the refusal to consider negative outcomes - like mortgage defaults - contributed directly to the current economic disaster. With the myth-busting powers for which she is acclaimed, Ehrenreich exposes the downside of positive thinking: personal self-blame and national denial. This is Ehrenreich at her provocative best - poking holes in conventional wisdom and faux science and ending with a call for existential clarity and courage.
She begins her book with a chapter called Smile or Die: The Bright Side of Cancer, where she tells that the first attempt to recruit her into positive thinking was when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She experienced that everything and everybody around her tried to make her “realize that breast cancer is not a problem at all, not even an annoyance – it is a ‘gift,’ deserving of the most heartfelt gratitude.”
Ehrenreich clearly see the similarity with Soviet-style Communism, which we do not usually think of as a cheerful sort of arrangement. But it exemplified the use of positive thinking as a means of social control. Writing of the former Yugoslavia at the beginning of the twenty-first century, Dubravka Ugresic observed that “former communists, modern capitalists, nationalists, religious fanatics” were all picking up on the fresh breeze of positivity from the West. “They have all become optimists.” But this was hardly something new, she went on, because “optimism has a stain on its ideological record…If anything has survived Stalinism itself, it is the Stalinist demand for optimism.” In the Soviet Union, as in the Eastern European states and North Korea, the censors required upbeat art, books, and films, meaning upbeat heroes, plots about fulfilling production quotas, and endings promising a glorious revolutionary future. Czechoslovakian literature was suffused with “blind optimism”; North Korean short stories still beam with “relentless optimism.” In the Soviet Union itself, “being charged with a lack of historical optimism meant being charged with distortion of the truth or transmission of false truths. Pessimism and ideological wavering meant the same thing…in various disputes, the possibility of an alienated and lonely hero in socialism was forbidden in the name of the demands for historical optimism and a positive hero.”
The penalties for negative thinking was real. Not to be positive and optimistic was to be “defeatist,” and, as Ugresic writes of the Soviet Union, “defeatists paid for the sin of defeatism. Accusing someone of spreading defeatism condemned him to several years in Stalinist camps.”
So, the positive thinking movement is, through counterculture and postmodernism, re-introducing Stalinism in new clothing. This we already see in the treatment of the unemployed – “defect consumers” – who are treated as a kind of criminals. Their rights have in many cases directly been taken away from them, and they are put in re-education institutions, and work-training camps.
On the internet there is an enormous propaganda machine working to promote New Thought and New Age. What especially characterizes New Thought is the demand for rewriting history, for redefining “old” stories, and hereby introduce their own new story (in the New Thought bible, A Course in Miracles, you can for example find a complete revision of the teachings of Jesus Christ, so that they fit into New Thought teachings - see my article: A Course in Miracles – a Critique).
Let me give an example of a New Age propaganda website, theshiftnetwork.com. The introduction seems harmless and “positive”:
Our mission is to serve the personal transformational needs of as many individuals as possible, helping them expand the aperture of their personal arc of development over time.
Then comes some New Thought brainwashing stuff:
We are working to upgrade the ‘human operating system’ by: […]
We call ourselves the Shift Network because it will take millions of connected, activated, inspired citizens to enact the changes that are possible. A network of inspired hearts, awakened minds, and dedicated souls.
This is what we’re creating and we’re well on our way, having served over 1,300,000 people worldwide with customers in 170 countries and having featured over 1,000 thought leaders in domains as diverse as spirituality, peace, holistic health, psychology, parenting, enlightened business, indigenous wisdom, and sustainability.
The term “Thought Leader” is a term you´ll hear again and again on the internet. It is something that comes from the New Thought movement. And they come in all kinds of disguises and with all kinds of titles: scientists, philosophers, shamans, healers, psychotherapists, management theorists, etc., etc., etc. And the internet supply them with the means where they can buy themselves diplomas as BAs, MAs, PHDs. And the internet supply them with fake journals where they can get their papers peer reviewed by paying for it.
One of the “thought leaders” presented on the website is Gregg Braden. It is incredible how this guy is featured on the internet. Who are doing this promotion work? Braden is just one of hundreds and hundreds of New Agers playing the role as scientists; just one of the "New Age scientists" whom Sheldrake is supporting, and whom he believes shall take over from what he calls "the old-fashioned scientists". This will probably also happen. It has already started. And Sheldrake could easily be seen as a chief ideologist.
Gregg Braden has managed to acquire himself a place number 76 of The 100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People in 2019. If you look at the list, then note that another New Thought guru, Oprah Winfrey, is number two after the pope. Dalai Lama is number three. And right after Dalai Lama comes another New Thought thinker: Eckhart Tolle. After Tolle comes Desmond Tutu, who is followed by yet another New Thought promotor: Rhonda Byrne, famous for the New Age movie: The Secret (can be seen on Netflix). Hereafter just follows one after the other New Thought guru. Rupert Sheldrake is number 49. In other words: the list is overall represented by New Thought promoters (note that the list in my view are fairly objective). There must therefore exist a powerful obscure Matrix elite, which is promoting them. The movie The Secret is, for example, soon coming as a Hollywood movie (in 2020), featuring Katie Holmes.
On the Shift Network page, Braden is presented with his show:
The New Human Story – Awakening Your Evolutionary Potential For Self-healing, Longevity and Super-perception.
This show is, at the time of writing this, promoted everywhere on social medias. It says:
Join visionary Gregg Braden to awaken your deep intuition, precognition, and advanced states of self-healing.
Discover the surprising science that reimagines the very origins of humanity... revealing how you’re more than you’ve ever imagined!
Recent scientific research is revealing that many things we’ve assumed about being human — about our capabilities and limitations — have been flat out wrong. The science is now lining up with what mystics and yogis have been saying for centuries — and a whole new world is emerging...
If you can read in the introduction to my Cultural Criticism, you can see, that gaslightning is a typical brainwashing technique in The Matrix Conspiracy. Expressions such as: “What if I told you that everything you believed to be true was wrong?”…are common introductions into New Thought.
Pseudoskepticism refers to arguments which use scientific sounding language to disparage or refute given beliefs, theories, or claims, but which in fact fail to follow the precepts of conventional scientific skepticism. The term “pseudoskepticism” has gradually been expanded to include any unsubstantiated invalidation of a theory. Pseudoskepticism is mainly limited to atheist scientism. This is investigated in depth in my ebook on Richard Dawkins.
I have explained pseudoscience in many different ways. In this case, let me quote Wikipedia, which in this case is quite accurate:
Pseudoscience consists of statements, beliefs, or practices that are claimed to be both scientific and factual but are incompatible with the scientific method. Pseudoscience is often characterized by contradictory, exaggerated or unfalsifiable claims; reliance on confirmation bias rather than rigorous attempts at refutation; lack of openness to evaluation by other experts; absence of systematic practices when developing hypotheses; and continued adherence long after the pseudoscientific hypotheses have been experimentally discredited. The term pseudoscience is considered pejorative, because it suggests something is being presented as science inaccurately or even deceptively. Those described as practicing or advocating pseudoscience often dispute the characterization.
The demarcation between science and pseudoscience has philosophical and scientific implications. Differentiating science from pseudoscience has practical implications in the case of health care, expert testimony, environmental policies, and science education. Distinguishing scientific facts and theories from pseudoscientific beliefs, such as those found in astrology, alchemy, alternative medicine, occult beliefs, religious beliefs, and creation science, is part of science education and scientific literacy.
Pseudoscience can be harmful. For example, pseudoscientific anti-vaccine activism and promotion of homeopathic remedies as alternative disease treatments can result in people forgoing important medical treatment with demonstrable health benefits.
As I pointed out in my ebook on Dawkins: the discipline that educates new scientists in pseudoscience was traditionally Philosophy of Science. However, this discipline is about to be redefined, since the educators in the discipline, the philosophers, in larger and larger degree, are being replaced by scientists or postmodernists (it is probably just a question of time, then we will see New Agers as teachers).
Pseudoscience is mainly present in New Age scientism, but Richard Dawkins´s notion of “selfish genes” and “memes” are also pseudoscience. Pseudoscience is always combined with reductionism. Gregg Braden´s work is pseudoscience from beginning to end. Let´s go into it.
Braden´s “scientific method”
There are no scientific method or philosophical argumentation in Braden´s books. His “scientific” method is based on thought distortions (I will later show that this technique was known in ancient Greece as “sophism” - persuasion rhetoric). Besides that his work is a mix of reductionism and pseudoscience, it is characterized by especially two thought distortions: Research Has Shown That…, and, Quote Mining.
Research has Shown That... is a phrase, which often is used to convince the listener about that the one who talks can reason what he says with concrete empirical proof. But this is often just an example of subjective argumentation (sophism), a kind of unethical manipulation, because it is extremely vague to claim that ”research has shown” anything, unless you can reason the assertion with specific details about the claimed research. Who has carried out this research? Which methods were there used? What exactly did they discover? Have their results been confirmed by others who work within the area? If you pay attention to it, you can see that Braden is using phrases such as, Research Has Shown That…or, New Discoveries Shows That…etc., again and again.
Another thought distortion is Quote Mining (also called contextomy). Quote mining is an informal fallacy in which a passage is removed from its surrounding matter in such a way as to distort its intended meaning. Contextomies may be either intentional or accidental if someone misunderstands the meaning and omits something essential to clarifying it, thinking it to be non-essential. As a fallacy, quoting out of context differs from false attribution, in that the out of context quote is still attributed to the correct source.
Arguments based on this fallacy typically take two forms:
1) As a straw man argument, it involves quoting an opponent out of context in order to misrepresent their position (typically to make it seem more simplistic or extreme) in order to make it easier to refute. It is common in politics.
2) As an appeal to authority, it involves quoting an authority on the subject out of context, in order to misrepresent that authority as supporting some position.
The latter is the fallacy Braden demonstrates again and again and again. It is in fact quite unethical to abuse other people in this way, and it is therefore in glaring contradiction to all Braden´s talk about human compassion and co-operation. Add to this that he mixes genuine scientific quotes with quotes from pseudoscientists. It works as a smokescreen for his personal pseudoscientific fictions, and it requires an enormous work to look through it. This is also the reason why people either are getting impressed, or that critics simply don´t bother to go into it.
Quote mining is known from the Creation-Evolution controversy. Braden´s book: The Science of Self-improvement (formerly Human by Design), is in reality an intelligent design argument. Braden is here using the same arguments as intelligent design advocates, which I won´t go into, except by understating that most of them are pseudoscientific nonsense. Try to read the Wikipedia entry on Intelligent Design, and you´ll get an idea.
However, I will defend creationists and intelligent design advocates to a certain point. For example, the so-called “monkey myth”, the theory about that humans have descended from the apes, is a myth which many people still believe is a scientific fact. Furthermore: it is important to mention, that the theory of evolution – also in its most modern Neodarwinistic version – is a natural historical report, and not a natural scientific theory. Neodarwinism can – as all other historical sciences – only retrospective explain the development up to now in a rational way. This appears clearly from the fact, that it can´t give any scientific well-founded prediction of the future development. It is not possible with any reasonable precision to predict the future biological development on the background of the theoretical foundation of the theory of evolution. In other words: the theory of evolution is a historical relative point of view, and can be changed by new discoveries, as it has many times. See my ebook on Dawkins. Here you also can read about Guerilla Skepticism. Guerilla Skepticism on Wikipedia (GSoW) is a group that edits Wikipedia articles to improve skeptical content. Some people believe that it is the tyrannical shadow government of Wikipedia, censoring views not in alignment with the Skeptical Scriptures. As I demonstrate in the Dawkins book, there is no doubt that many articles on Wikipedia is written by this thought police, and you therefore ought to be critical when reading what Wikipedia writes, for example when reading the above-mentioned Wikpedia article in Intelligent Design. Also try to read Wikipedia´s Creation-Evolution Controversy page (which now has been renamed to: Rejection of Evolution by Religious Groups [?]). It is extremely one-sided, and has no element of philosophy of science whatsoever. Read the introduction:
The rejection of evolution by religious groups (also termed the creation vs. evolution debate or the origins debate) involves an ongoing, recurring cultural, political, and theological dispute about the origins of the Earth, of humanity, and of other life. Species were once widely believed to be fixed products of divine creation in accordance with creationism, but since the mid-19th century evolution by natural selection has been established as an empirical scientific fact.
This is a one-sided misleading description. In philosophy of science you´ll find the rational discussion of the ideology of evolutionism, and the arguments I pointed out above (see my ebook: Evolutionism – the Red thread in the Matrix Conspiracy). And that´s highly valuable. But philosophy of science is removed from the Wikipedia page. Braden could find a lot of valuable arguments in philosophy of science, but, as I show in this booklet, he is himself into scientism.
So, Braden is quote mining quite a lot, in all his books. But not enough with that: Braden is also quoting wrong translations of scientists´ sayings. More about that later.
So, besides using the above-mentioned thought distortions, there is no scientific method present at all in Braden´s work. As already mentioned: It seems like he is writing science fiction novels. In the following I will go into two of his books: The God Code and The Divine Matrix.
The God Code
Already in the introduction to his book The God Code, Braden comes with some postulations that show the degree of…well, his plain weirdness. It opens some questions: Is the guy utterly naïve? Is he a sinister con artist? Is he confused? All these are probably included. But, in the Sheldrake ebook, I showed that the postmodernist intellectualism behind New Age, in fact are justifying that science can be whatever you want it to be. Science is a matter of the best rhetoric (sophism). Add to this the New Thought mantra: “Fake It Till You Make It”. I´ll return to that.
Anyway, Braden begins the book with the thought distortion, Research Has Shown That…:
A remarkable discovery linking the biblical alphabets of Hebrew and Arabic to modern chemistry reveals that a lost code – a translatable alphabet – and a clue to the mystery of our origin, has lived within us all along. Applying this discovery to the language of life, the familiar elements of hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen and carbon that form our DNA may now be replaced with key letters of the ancient languages. In doing so, the code of all life is transformed into the words of a timeless message. Translated, the message reveals that the precise letters of God´s ancient name are encoded as the genetic information in every cell, of every life.
The message reads: “God/Eternal within the body”
The Meaning: Humankind is one family, united through a common heritage, and the result of an intentional act of creation!
Preserved within each cell of the estimated six billion inhabitants of our world, the message is repeated, again and again, to form the building blocks of our existence. This ancient message from the days of our origins – the same message – remains within each of us today, regardless of race, religion, heritage, lifestyle, or belief. As we´ll see in Chapter 9, the code is so universal that it produces the identical message when translated into either the Hebrew or the Arabic language! (page xv)
That God´s name is written in Hebrew within our cells is quite a postulation. We shall later look at Braden´s “evidence”. But what I right now want to point out is the weirdness of claiming that this message is beyond “race, religion, heritage, lifestyle, or belief”. How can a message, linked to the specific biblical alphabets of Hebrew and Arabic, be beyond “race, religion, heritage, lifestyle, or belief”? The biblical alphabets of Hebrew and Arabic are precisely a definition of a specific “race, religion, heritage, lifestyle, or belief”. The postulation is just plain weird, and when I read it the first time I thought it had to be a mistake, or that an explanation had to follow. But Braden doesn´t give any explanation, Instead he continues the postulation throughout the book, sometimes in a preaching style:
The discovery of God´s name within the essence of all life demonstrates that we are related not only to one another, but also to life itself, in the most intimate way imaginable. From a single blade of grass, to vast expanses of uncharted rain forests, from a fruit fly peering at us through the many facets of a compound eye, to the piercing stare from out nearest primate relatives – any logic that preys upon our differences ultimately dissolves with the evidence that all life is made from the chemical equivalent of a single name. With such tangible proof of a common bond, we´re given a reason to look beyond the issue that may have separated us in the past, and a place to begin when our differences seem insurmountable (page xv).
Braden´s postulations are directly racist and fascist. He claims the superiority of the Hebrew and Arabic race by abusing biological language. I hope that most of us can remember similar postulations in the past? The crux of The God Code is that our DNA sequence, when read by assigning Hebrew characters to the base sequence, spells out the words of our Creator: within each cell of our body is God's signature in Hebrew. This is so openly a racist version of Jews as the Chosen People as it can be.
I began this text-series on scientism critique with the question:
How, given the recent and unfortunate story of ideologically motivated conceptions of knowledge – Lysenkoism in Stalin´s Soviet Union, for example, or Nazi critiques of “Jewish science” – could it again have become acceptable to behave in this way?
Gregg Braden is in The God Code presenting a reverse form of Nazi critiques of Jewish science. Or, rather, he is creating that Nazi fantasy of a Jewish science, which the Nazi´s sought to eliminate.
Let´s go to his “evidence”. Let´s repeat his words:
…any logic that preys upon our differences ultimately dissolves with the evidence that all life is made from the chemical equivalent of a single name. With such tangible proof of a common bond, we´re given a reason to look beyond the issue that may have separated us in the past, and a place to begin when our differences seem insurmountable.
Braden begins his evidence with the story of his 12 years of research. In the section called, A Well-research Book or a Technical Paper: Why This Approach? he goes from his general postulations about that “new research has shown…that God´s name is written in Hebrew in our DNA”, to his own research. He writes:
As with any discovery that is technical in nature, the challenge has been to convey the information in a way that is accurate and meaningful to a broad, general audience. When I began this project in 1990, I was counseled by some experts to offer the material from a scholarly perspective. To do so, however, would mean revealing the findings in increments that could ultimately delay the final publication, and the power of the message, by months or even years. (The landmark study of the numeric codes in the Hebrew Bible, for example, was delayed for six years while being evaluated by peers and referees (4)) (page xxii).
After the last word “referees” in the above quote, there is a reference to Braden´s note section. Braden´s huge note section (mostly consisting of quote mining) is, as already mentioned, one of the aspects, when evaluating Braden´s work, that almost makes one give up, or simply don´t bother to go on with an in-depth investigation of his claims. But in this case, I was simply curious. The note says:
4. Randall Ingermanson, Ph.D., Who Wrote the Bible Code? A Physicist Probes the Current Controversy (Colorado Springs: WaterBrook Press, 1999), p. 19.
If you try to google Randall Ingermanson , you´ll find his website. The introduction says:
Randy Ingermanson – First Century Jerusalem fiction.
The page displays an Indiana Jones-like cartoon character (as I have written in my article, A Critique of New Age Website Gaia.com, the huge amount of New Age pseudoscientists - especially those dealing with pseudoarchaology - are very fond of the Indiana Jones character, and they are often dressed in the same way).
In the navigation there is a reference to Ingermanson´s novels, and to a page called “Mad Science”. On this page you´ll find Ingermanson´s speculations on “The Alleged Bible Code”. I will quote them here with links, since it gives an idea of the “research background” for Braden´s book. Ingermanson writes:
It may seem strange and crazy now, but back in the 1980s and 1990s, a lot of orthodox Jewish techies were interested in something they called the “Torah codes.”
The claim was that God had encoded information into the text of the Hebrew Bible that could not have been known by the human authors of the Bible.
Doron Witztum, Eliyahu Rips, and Yoav Rosenberg published an article in 1994 in the refereed journal Statistical Science which created a huge controversy because it claimed to detect encoded information that was very unlikely to be there by random chance. (The usual odds quoted were 1 in 62500.)
A journalist, Michael Drosnin, published a best-selling book in 1997, The Bible Code, which claimed that the Israeli military used these alleged codes to gain a military advantage during the Persian Gulf War in 1991. Drosnin, who does not believe in God, suggested that time-traveling space aliens were responsible for these “codes.” This was probably not the highest peak in gullibility in the 1990s, but it comes close.
A psychiatrist, Jeffrey Satinover, wrote a best-selling book not long after, Cracking the Bible Code, in which he presented the case that the Torah encodes an essentially infinite amount of material. He based this on a statement made by the famous Jewish rabbi Eliyahu ben Shlomo (commonly called the “Vilna Gaon”). Satinover quotes him as saying, “All that was, is, and will be unto the end of time is included in the Torah, the first five books of the Bible.” Satinover further quotes him as saying, “…and not merely in a general sense, but including the details of every person individually, and the most minute details of everything that happened to him from the day of his birth until his death; likewise of every kind of animal and beast and living thing that exists, and of herbiage, and of all that grows or is inert.”
Naturally, a lot of people were skeptical of these alleged codes, as they should be. Spectacular claims like these require solid evidence. A large number of people got involved. By far, the biggest contributor was Brendan McKay, an Australian mathematician who put in enormous efforts to expose errors in the alleged Bible code. In the US, Caltech mathematician Barry Simon (an orthodox Jew) wrote several influential articles attacking the codes.
I got interested in the codes and wrote a book in 1999 on the subject, Who Wrote The Bible Code? which was published by WaterBrook Press, a Christian division of Random House.
I was not particularly interested in responding to the work of Witztum, Rips, and Rosenberg, since I felt that Brendan McKay and Barry Simon had already given all the response necessary.
And I don’t think any mathematician ever took Michael Drosnin’s claims seriously, because time-traveling space aliens seemed to me to be just too silly for words.
But Jeffrey Satinover’s extravagant claims seemed to me be testable, precisely because they were so extravagant. If there’s a near-infinite amount of information encoded in the Torah, then surely that enormous pile of information should be detectable using general principles, right? So in my book, I explained a set of computations I had done that tried to measure the amount of excess information that might be encoded in the Torah (using ideas from information theory). The idea here is that all normal texts contain some finite amount of information and you can measure it. So I wanted to measure the excess information, above and beyond what you’d normally expect. I found that it was very small (not statistically distinguishable from zero). So my opinion is that there is no compelling evidence for a Bible code that contains enormous amounts of information as described by Satinover.
My publisher was unable to typeset the mathematical equations in my book, so they asked me to make them available as a PDF document here on my web site. If you’ve read my book and are looking for the mathematical appendices, this PDF file is what you’re looking for.
I’m no longer much interested in the subject. In my view, the Bible code was a bit of weird science that could have been interesting, but turned out not to be.
I don’t have a philosophical objection to the codes. After all, I’m a Christian. Therefore, I believe in God. And if you believe that God exists, then it follows that he might conceivably have created a code for us to find.
But I don’t see any reason to believe he did, and there are some serious literary reasons to think he didn’t. For more on those, check out the work by Michael Heiser, who earned a Ph.D. in Hebrew and Semitic Languages from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.
Years ago, I had a number of discussions by e-mail with some of the codes proponents in the US. Of these, the most interesting was Robert Haralick, who is a pioneer in computer vision. He’s certainly one of the world’s leading experts in pattern recognition in images. I consider him an outstanding scientist and I wish that more of the codes proponents were like him.
Dr. Haralick is an orthodox Jew and seems to believe that the Torah codes are real, although it’s hard to pin down his exact level of belief. He has continued to work on the “Torah code hypothesis” and his website uses proper scientific language to discuss the topic. If you’re interested in the subject, his site is probably the best place to begin, since he is a working scientist and thinks like one.
At one time, I had quite a few pages on my website with various articles and book reviews on the Bible code. However, I consider it a dead subject now, so when I moved my website to a new technology years ago, I didn’t transfer the old content. I think hardly anyone cares anymore.
Braden apparently takes all this seriously. Perhaps because the involved are “scientists”? This is properly why he refers to Ingermanson´s book. Anyway, if you don´t take it seriously, Braden unwillingly exposes himself as a simple plagiarist. He just slightly changes some names. Even the title, “The God Code” is almost the same, as the original “Bible Code”. This is typical for New Agers.
This booklet on Braden is mainly a text focusing on philosophy, especially philosophy of science, and I will therefore not go into the Number Magic implied in all of the above, and which the rest of The God Code also are filled with.
I don´t need to either, because it has all been investigated before. I will here supply with some links to sites. First of all: Braden´s “evidence” is based on numerology. And there is especially one site that has debunked this:
What Happened to Gregg Braden? — A critique of his latest work: The God Code
A quote from this website:
To justify this revolutionary claim, Braden appeals to numerology: he states that because the base molecules in our DNA — the language codes of thymine, adenine, cytosine and guanine — are made up of the elements hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen and carbon, with respective "atomic masses" 1, 5, 6 and 3 [these are wrong], they actually correspond with the 1st, 5th, 6th and 3rd letters of the Hebrew Alphabet. Therefore, they spell YH VG which means "God/Eternal… Within the Body". Braden is blown away by this… although the audience seems less sure of the connection or have been bamboozled by his pseudoscience build up.
I will also refer to Robert Carroll´s investigation of numerology:
Also see the following sites on the Bible code:
The Bible Code (Wikipedia. Follow the criticism link).
Bible Code (The Skeptic´s Dictionary).
It is not the first time Braden is using Number Magic as “scientific” evidence. In 1997 he wrote a book called Awakening to Zero, where he used Fibonacci numbers. Read the critique of that book: Zero Points to Gregg Braden.
The main philosophical problem with numerology is, that it, in the same way as personality typing and astrology, turns your focus to The Four Philosophical Hindrances rather than The Four Philosophical Openings. God would hardly want this. It creates an existence-philosophical problem, where you in your opinion formation and identity formation strive towards being something else than what you are, where you imitate others, are a slave of other´s ideas and ideals, and where your actions are characterized by irresoluteness and doubt – see my articles: The Four Philosophical Hindrances and Openings, Some Critical Comments to Astrology, and Personality Typing is Refined System of Prejudice).
That Braden wants science to answer philosophical questions is one aspect that categorizes his work as scientism. The other aspect is that he wants science and politics to be merged (remember: this was also written in his bio on his website). In The God Code he writes:
The fact that the message is the “stuff” that we are made of tells us that we are part of a much grander scheme. Our relationship to that intelligence is a factor that must now be considered in the policies of science, war, and peace – policies that pave the way for tomorrow (page xxii).
This is simply scary stuff. The question is how conscious Braden is about what it is he in fact are proposing. As already mentioned: we have seen the same proposals, and concrete actions, in Nazi Germany and the in the former Soviet.
The Divine Matrix
The Divine Matrix – Bridging Time, Space, Miracles and Belief, is one of Braden´s most popular books. Back cover description:
Between 1993 and 2000, a series of groundbreaking experiments revealed dramatic evidence of a web of energy that connects everything in our lives and our world - the Divine Matrix. From the healing of our bodies, to the success of our careers, relationships, and the peace between nations, this new evidence demonstrates that we each hold the power to speak directly to the force that links all of creation. What would it mean to discover that the power to create joy, to heal suffering, and bring peace to nations lives inside of you? How differently would you live if you knew how to use this power each day of your life? Join Gregg Braden on this extraordinary journey bridging science, spirituality and miracles through the language of The Divine Matrix.
As with other New Age books, The Divine Matrix is used by other New Agers as “scientific validation” of their own techniques. It spreads like rings in water. For example, on a website called Matrix Re-imprinting, a New Age therapist writes the following:
I work holistically, with a grounding in psychological theory, integrating a variety of therapeutic tools. These include: Counselling, EFT, Matrix Re-imprinting, Psych-K®, Theta Healing, Rewind Technique (Fast Phobia Cure), Reference Point and Geneline Therapy, and Spiritual Healing or Reiki.
Matrix Re-imprinting? The subtitle on the website goes: “Rewrite Your Past, Transform Your Future”.
“Matrix Re-imprinting” is a New Age technique created by Karl Dawson, an “EFT Founding Master”. The website says:
Matrix Reimprinting is a completely new personal development technique that dramatically improves health and wellbeing by allowing you to access and transform painful memories that may be holding you trapped in the past. It was developed from the popular self-help technique, EFT, a meridian tapping therapy that has shown outstanding results with both physical and emotional issues. Matrix Reimprinting advances EFT by incorporating all the latest developments in the New Sciences and quantum physics.
The New Sciences? Quantum physics? The introduction to the book on Matrix Re-imprinting claims that:
We are all connected to a “unified energy field, generally referred to as the “Field or “The Matrix”. This understanding was first brought to light in the 1940s by the father of quantum mechanics, Max Planck. In the twenty-first century it was popularized by films such as The Secret, What the Bleep Do We Know?! and more recently, The Living Matrix, and books such as The Divine Matrix, by Gregg Braden, and The Field, by Lynne Mctaggart.
According to the book, you can practice Matrix Re-imprinting by following four principles:
1) We are all made up of energy that vibrates so fast we appear as solid matter.
2) We are linked by a web that connects us all known as the Matrix,
3) We send out thoughts out into the Matrix and those thoughts are attracted back to us as life experiences.
4) We can change how we experience life by changing the pictures in the Matrix.
All this are familiar New Thought stuff. Let´s look at Braden´s book. The book begins, not surprisingly, with a quote:
“All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force…We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent Mind. This Mind is the matrix of all matter.”
Max Planck, 1944
The underlining of the word matrix is Braden´s, not mine. There are no references after this quote, which forms the foundation for the title of Braden´s book. However, since the quote is the foundation for the book title, Braden keeps on repeating it. Already on page 27 he returns to it, writing:
Max Planck stated that the existence of the field suggests that intelligence is responsible for our physical world. “We must assume behind this force [that we see as matter] the existence of a conscious and intelligent Mind.” He concluded, “This Mind is the matrix of all matter [author´s brackets and italics]” (15)
Here there is a reference to the note section. I will now quote the entire text in the note section:
15. Max Planck, from a speech that he gave in Florence, Italy, in 1944, entitled: “Das Wesen der Materie” (The Essence/Nature/Character of Matter). Source: Archiv zur Geschichte der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Abt. Va. Rep. 11 Planck, Nr. 1797.
Below I have included a portion of that speech in the original German, with the English translation following.
Original German: “Als Physiker, der sein ganzes Leben der nüchternen Wissenschaft, der Erforschung der Materie widmete, bin ich sicher von dem Verdacht frei, für einen Schwarmgeist gehalten zu werden. Und sp sage ich nach meinen Erforschungen des Atoms dieses: Es gibt keine Materie an sich. Alle in Schwingung bringt und sie zum winzigsten Sonnensystem des Alls eine ewige Kraft gibt – es ist der Menschheit nicht gelungen, das heiBersehnte Perpetuum mobile zu erfinden – so müssen wir hinter dieser Kraft einen bewuBten intelligenten Geist annehmen. Dieser Geist ist der Urgrund aller Materie.”
English Translation: “As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clear-headed science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about the atoms this much: There is no matter as such! All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particles of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together…We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent Mind. This Mind is the matrix of all matter.”
I don´t know if Braden simply hopes that his readers don´t understand German, or if he himself doesn´t, or if he is simply ignorant. Because again he exposes himself by actually printing this note. I would guess, that he is ignorant, and believes that it sounds smart to include the German translation. Let´s look at it.
First of all: it was only by sheer co-incidence I discovered that Braden has found the quote in the Wikipedia article on Max Planck. It is found in the section on Planck´s religious views (click here). Planck was namely a Christian. Again, it is of course quote mining (in this case: contextomy) to use something Planck has said in a context of his religious views, as if it was something he has said in the context of scientific investigation. But this is what Braden, without any trace of conscience, does all the time with all kinds of scientists, as well as religious people.
To bring in scientists´ religious views can be relevant in the case of Dawkins and the skeptical movement, where it is claimed, that science is an atheist practice, and that true scientists must be atheists. But in this case, it is different.
Braden´s English translation of Planck´s comment is obviously taken from the Wikipedia article. The translation in Wikipedia is:
"As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clear headed science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about atoms this much: There is no matter as such. All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particle of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together. We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent spirit (orig. geist). This spirit is the matrix of all matter."
That Braden has his own quote from this Wikipedia “translation” can be demonstrated in that the Wikipedia translation is wrong, and that Braden has repeated the mistake. The mistake begins and ends with the word “Matrix”, the very word that is the foundation of the whole of Braden´s book. Planck never said “matrix”. Even if you can´t understand German, you can easily try to scan the text for the word Matrix. You will not find it. You could then say that The Matrix is the English translation of Planck´s German expression, but this is precisely the mistake. The German word which mistakenly has been translated into “Matrix” is Urgrund. In Danish we have the same word: Urgrund. Directly translated it means “Primordial Ground”. I therefore have a native understanding of what it was Planck meant with that word. You might be able to use other translations, but there is nothing whatsoever that justifies the use of the word “Matrix”.
I will of course be fair to Braden and say that the wrong translation was found in Wikipedia. I tried to find out if there were any references to the translator, but there isn´t. It must be the person who has written the section that has chosen to use the word “Matrix”. It could be interesting to find out who. The reason for the choice of the word “Matrix” as an English translation of the German word “Urgrund” remains a riddle. And I must admit, that I suspect that someone intentionally has manipulated the Wikipedia article. I would namely claim, that the translation not only is wrong, it is intentionally false.
The origin of the word Matrix comes from late Middle English (in the sense ‘womb’): from Latin, ‘breeding female’, later ‘womb’, from mater, matr- ‘mother’.
General definitions of the word Matrix:
1) the cultural, social, or political environment in which something develops.
"Oxbridge was the matrix of the ideology"
2) a mass of fine-grained rock in which gems, crystals, or fossils are embedded.
"nodules of secondary limestone set in a matrix of porous dolomite"
3) a mould in which something, such as a record or printing type, is cast or shaped.
"her two duets with Isobel Baillie were never issued and the matrices were destroyed"
4) Mathematics: a rectangular array of quantities or expressions in rows and columns that is treated as a single entity and manipulated according to particular rules. "this formula applies for all square matrices"
5) an organizational structure in which two or more lines of command, responsibility, or communication may run through the same individual.
"matrix structures are said to foster greater flexibility"
As anybody can see, there is none of these definitions that justify that the word matrix should be a replacement of the German word Urgrund, which directly translated means Primordial Ground, especially not when taken into account that Planck was talking in a Christian context.
Oh, I forgot: the word “Matrix” is also the title of the Hollywood movie The Matrix. Perhaps that is the whole of the explanation?
Moreover: Braden is himself taking some liberties with the false Wikipedia translation. He has namely exchanged the word “spirit” (and therewith the original Geist) with the word “mind”. The Wikipedia translation correctly translated “Geist” with the word “spirit”. Exchanging the word “spirit” with the word “mind” is a further distortion of Planck´s Christian usage of words. Planck´s words are now unrecognizable. The context of Planck´s words should be seen in a Christian context. This context has in Braden´s translation been removed and redefined. Braden has of course done this because it fits into his later nonsense about quantum mysticism and a special metaphysical theory of mind: subjective idealism. This theory of mind is common New Thought thinking. Let´s therefore continue with that.
Let´s remember the backcover description of The Divine Matrix:
Between 1993 and 2000, a series of groundbreaking experiments revealed dramatic evidence of a web of energy that connects everything in our lives and our world - the Divine Matrix.
Braden is now moving into the world of quantum physics. I won´t go into detail with Braden´s enormous work of quote mining and setting up “scientific” smokescreens. I will namely show that his whole card house falls together since he repeats a myth that is well known to people with knowledge about quantum physics and philosophy of science.
On page 39, he begins with the usual Research has Shown That…, fallacy:
A growing body of research suggests that we´re more than cosmic latecomers simply passing through a universe that was completed long ago. Experimental evidence is leading to a conclusion that we´re actually creating the universe as we go and adding to what already exists! In other words, we appear to be the very energy that´s forming the cosmos, as well as the beings who experience what we´re creating. That´s because we are consciousness, and consciousness appears to the same “stuff” from which the universe is made.
Here Braden (out of the blue) introduces subjective idealism (a metaphysical theory) and the New Thought idea of create-your-own-reality. Hereafter he writes:
This is the very essence of quantum theory that troubled Einstein so much. Until the end of his life, he held to a belief that the universe exists independently of us. Responding to analogies about our effect on the world and the experiments showing that matter changes when we observe it, he simply stated, “I like to think that the moon is there even if I am not looking at it”. (page 39).
This is quote mining an interview Einstein had with John Wheeler. It is a philosophical discussion. Einstein speaks about subjective idealism, which claims that only our own mind exists. This means that the world only exists when we observe it. If we don´t observe it, it doesn´t exist. Note that the word “we” can´t be used at all here. Only “I” can be said to exist, if you should take subjective idealism literally. Einstein therefore makes quite a good argument. Braden doesn´t notice it at all. But the central thing is, that Braden doesn´t discriminate between when scientists are having philosophical discussions (which can be highly philosophical naïve since they are not trained philosophers), and scientific research. He describes scientists´ personal philosophical/religious thoughts as “scientific studies”. For example, if a scientist in a certain context says something about his personal religious views, Braden takes this as scientific research, and based on such personal statements, he quickly jumps to the conclusion: research has now shown that….or: new scientific experiments show that…This is what Braden does constantly in all its astonishingly scientific naivety. He has no insight in philosophy of science whatsoever, which basically means that he is ignorant of what the scientific method is altogether. It shows in the confused comments below. Braden writes:
While our precise role in creation is still not fully understood [note how Braden wrongly presumes that it is science that should take care of this understanding], experiments in the quantum realm clearly show [no, they don´t, as I will show later] that consciousness has a direct effect on the most elementary particles of creation. And we are the source of the consciousness. Perhaps John Wheeler, professor emeritus at Princeton and a colleague of Einstein, may have best summarized our newly understood role.
Wheeler´s studies have led him to believe that we might live in a world that´s actually created by consciousness itself – a process that he calls a participatory universe. “According to it [the participatory principle],” says Wheeler, “we could not even imagine a universe that did not somewhere and for some stretch of time contain observers because the very building materials of the universe are these acts of observer-participatory.” He offers the central point of quantum theory, stating, “no elementary phenomenon is a phenomenon until it is an observed (or registered) phenomenon.” (page 39).
I will not go further into the difficult language of quantum physics, except by quoting a passage in Braden´s book, where he clearly repeats the myth about quantum physics, which New Agers repeat again and again. Hereafter I will show what the myth is, and end with a description of how Braden gets the myth linked together with the New Thought movement. Braden writes:
[…] Or is there another factor – one that´s often discounted – that may, in fact, play a powerful role in how we experience the things that have already been set into motion? Does life follow our predictions or meet our expectations? The key to living from the place where our imagination is already fulfilled and our dreams and prayers are already answered is to understand how the possibilities exists to begin with. And to that we need to return briefly to the central discovery that quantum physics makes about our world.
Quantum physics has been hugely successful in describing the behavior of things that are smaller that the atom – so successful, in fact, that a set of “rules” has been created to describe what we can expect to happen in this tiny invisible world. While the rules are few and simple, they can also sound strange, as they describe the things that particles do at the subatomic level. They tell us, for example, that:
In my Sheldrake text I have already talked about this myth. I will repeat it shortly here. The myth consists in these two postulations:
1) Einstein´s theories of relativity, and quantum mechanics, prove that relativism and subjectivism are valid points of views.
2) Quantum physics and Einstein´s theories of relativity prove that classical physics is not valid anymore.
Rebuttal of postulation 1:
It is a sophistication to assert, that Einstein´s theories of relativity should imply, that there is no objective or true description of the physical reality. This is a confusion of physical relativity with epistemological relativism, which corresponds to a similar misunderstanding of quantum mechanics as subjective. Quantum mechanics is not subjective in the sense, that it is the human consciousness, which produces the phenomena. It is not the consciousness of the physicist (the subjective), which makes the electron behave as a particle or a wave (this is what Braden postulates). It is the macrophysical (material) experimental devices, which affects the electron in such a way, so that you unambiguous know, that if you work with this type of apparatus, then the electron will always behave as a wave, and if your work with another type of apparatus, the electron will always behave as a particle. The whole of Braden´s book falls together with this simple fact.
In the same way the theories of relativity, epistemological seen, give no background for any relativism about, that ”everything is relative”. The seen does not depend of the eyes that watch when it comes to physical phenomena, neither in quantum mechanics, nor in relativistic physics.
Rebuttal of postulation 2:
The emergence of quantum mechanics has not made classical physics invalid; it is still valid, but Planck´s [!] constant (the quantum postulate) has given it a limited scope of application.
According to Niels Bohr quantum mechanics is a generalization of classical physics, and the complementarity principle is a generalization of the classical causality principle. In the same way: the theory of relativity is a generalization in another direction of the classical physics.
According to Bohr you can´t replace classical physics with quantum physics, because the validity of classical physics is a necessary precondition for, that you can describe the quantum mechanical phenomena, and set out for the macroscopical (“classical”) experimental arrangement.
This means, that both materialism and idealism (subjectivism and relativism) are invalid point of views. On the one side quantum mechanics breaks with the principle of causation and determinism, so that neither the human brain/mind, nor nature and evolution, can said to be fully cause-determined systems, as materialism claims. On the other side you can´t say neither, that the principle of causation and determinism are invalid, as idealism (subjectivism and relativism) claims. They are still valid, but with a limited scope of application. Instead you must use the complementarity-principle.
An interesting thing is, that almost all New Age versions of quantum mysticism, which totally deny the validity of the principle of causation and determinism (law of attraction, quantum healing, time travel, etc., etc.) actually are based on extreme cause-determined theories, for example the law of attraction, which claims, that if you think in a certain way, then the universe will reward you in a certain way. But that is what quantum mechanics breaks with.
If you want a deeper going examination of quantum mechanics and its relation to philosophy, read my main article Quantum mechanics and the philosophy of Niels Bohr.
Three follow-up articles with rebuttals of the myth:
Quantum Mysticism and Its Web of Lies
Quantum Mysticism: The Greatest Hox in the 20th Century
Who is the Mystical Observer in Quantum Mechanics? (in this article I deal with John Wheeler).
In the chapter, What Does it Mean to Participate in the Universe? Braden links quantum mysticism with the New Thought movement, of course without telling that it is the New Thought movement he links it with. Before going any further, I will clarify that Braden´s (and New Thought´s) advocacy of subjective idealism makes it impossible to “participate” in anything since subjective idealism ends in solipsism.
Subjective idealism, or empirical idealism, is the monistic metaphysical doctrine that only minds and mental contents exist. It entails and is generally identified or associated with immaterialism, the doctrine that material things do not exist. Subjective idealism rejects dualism, neutral monism, and materialism; indeed, it is the contrary of eliminative materialism, the doctrine that all or some classes of mental phenomena (such as emotions, beliefs, or desires) do not exist, but are sheer illusions.
The naïve discussions of these philosophies of mind often ends in an either/or. Either you are a subjective idealist or you are a materialist. As I have discussed in both the Dawkins and Sheldrake texts, there are many alternatives, which in fact are better solutions than materialism and idealism, which both end in nihilism.
Solipsism is the philosophical idea that only one's mind is sure to exist. As an epistemological position, solipsism holds that knowledge of anything outside one's own mind is unsure; the external world and other minds cannot be known and might not exist outside the mind. If you exchange the word mind with the word brain, you´ll have a materialist version of it: brain solipsism.
There are varying degrees of solipsism that parallel the varying degrees of skepticism. The most absurd degree is metaphysical solipsism. Metaphysical solipsism is a variety of solipsism. Based on, precisely, a philosophy of subjective idealism, metaphysical solipsists maintain that the self is the only existing reality and that all other realities, including the external world and other persons, are representations of that self, and have no independent existence. There are several versions of metaphysical solipsism, such as Caspar Hare's egocentric presentism (or perspectival realism), in which other people are conscious, but their experiences are simply not present.
Metaphysical solipsism ends in nihilism. Nihilism is the point of view that suspends belief in any or all general aspects of human life which are culturally accepted. Most commonly, nihilism is presented in the form of existential nihilism, which argues that life is without objective meaning, purpose, or intrinsic value. Moral nihilists assert that morality does not exist at all. Nihilism may also take epistemological, ontological, or metaphysical forms, meaning respectively that, in some aspect, knowledge is not possible, or reality does not actually exist.
Metaphysical nihilism is the philosophical theory that posits that concrete objects and physical constructs might not exist in the possible world, or that even if there exist possible worlds that contain some concrete objects, there is at least one that contains only abstract objects.
Extreme metaphysical nihilism is commonly defined as the belief that nothing exists as a correspondent component of the self-efficient world. The American Heritage Medical Dictionary defines one form of nihilism as "an extreme form of skepticism that denies all existence." A similar skepticism concerning the concrete world can be found in solipsism. However, despite the fact that both deny the certainty of objects' true existence, the nihilist would deny the existence of self whereas the solipsist would affirm it. Both these positions are considered forms of anti-realism.
It is highly strange that New Age, which you might believe is a spiritual movement, advocates some of the most extreme versions of nihilism, namely metaphysical nihilism. But if you pay notice to it, you´ll several time hear postulations about that reality doesn´t exist. Anti-realism is a central concept in the whole of The Matrix Conspiracy. You´ll hear it constantly in the neo-advaita movement, which is a New Age version of the Indian Advaita philosophy (see my ebook: The Tragic New Age Confusion of Eastern Enlightenment and Western Subjective Idealism).
You can see it in A Course in Miracles, in Byron Katie, etc. The latest example I stumbled upon, was through the mouth of New Age guru Deepak Chopra. Netflix has just launched a new documentary called: Have a Good Trip: Adventures in Psychedelics, which is a long commercial for beginning to use drugs. A long line of famous actors, musicians, comedians and writers are telling their best drug stories. It is incredible how this can happen without critique. The documentary is started and ended with Deepak Chopra, who, in the same way as Braden, is justifying the whole thing by the help of quantum mysticism. He ends the documentary by simply postulating that reality doesn´t exist. In other words: the typical New Age (postmodernist) "spirituality" which swims in subjectivism, relativism and metaphysical nihilism (there is no reality, there are no values, there is no spirituality, there is no enlightenment, there is no God, there is nothing at all). The end lines: Have a Good Trip! In other words: a commercial, which is gaslightning you into becoming a drug abuser: with Deepak Chopra as your guru! Think about that, if you are a Chopra worshipper!
As I have shown in my article, The Law of Attraction and its Roots in Black Magic: New Thought is a direct result of the more dark aspects of the counterculture. In my article, The Conspiracy of the Third Eye, I demonstrate how the Anti-Christ is prophesized and worshipped by New Thought leaders.
Anyway, in subjective idealism, and therewith solipsism, there is no reason to talk about “participating” in the universe, or in the external world, or in reality at all, because all such things are just illusions created by the mind. Braden writes (in a complete distortion, and therewith abuse, of both Wheeler and Max Planck):
Wheeler´s suggestions opens the door to a radical possibility: If consciousness creates, then the universe itself may be the result of this awareness. While Wheeler´s views were proposed later in the 20th century, we can´t help but think back to Max Planck´s 1944 statement that everything exists because of an “intelligent Mind,” which he called “the matrix of all matter.” The question that begs to be asked is simply: What Mind? (page 62).
And now Braden introduces the philosophy of mind called subjective idealism (he probably doesn´t know this himself), as well as traditional New Thought use of the philosophy. He writes:
The 20th-century visionary from Barbados known simply by the name of Neville perhaps best described our ability to make our dreams a reality and imagination to life. Through his numerous books and lectures, in terms that are simple yet direct, he shared the great secret of how to navigate the many possibilities of the Divine Matrix. From Neville´s perspective, all that we experience. literally everything that happens to us or is done by us – is the product of our consciousness and absolutely nothing else. He believed that our ability to apply this understanding through the power of imagination is all that stands between us and the miracles of our lives. Just as the Divine Matrix provides the container for the universe, Neville suggested that it´s impossible for anything to happen outside the container of consciousness (page 63).
To repeat: there is no reason to use the term “us” here. There is no reason to use the term “participatory” here. The standpoint can only be expressed via the terms “I” or “me”. There is no reason at all to tell anyone about the Divine Matrix, because there are no one to tell it to. You don´t have any friends, family or other people who love you. There are no flowers, rivers, mountains, moon and stars. There is no universe, except as an imagination of your own mind. Only you exist, but not in a body, because there doesn´t exist any matter at all. The only existing entity is your own mind. Solipsism in a nutshell. So, when Braden directly after is writing the following, he is contradicting himself:
From the leaders of nations whom we´ve learned to fear and hate to the people in other countries who touch our hearts and invite our love, we´re all connected in what may be the most intimate way imaginable: through the field of consciousness that´s the incubator for our reality. Together, we create the healing or the suffering, the peace or the war. This could very well be the most difficult implication of what the new science is showing us. And it might also be the source of our greatest healing and survival (page 64).
Note how this is contradicted by the following quotes:
Neville´s work reminds us that perhaps the biggest error in our worldview is to look to external reasons for life´s ups and downs […] Neville shares the crux of the greatest mystery regarding our relationship to the world around us: “Man´s chief delusion is his conviction that there are causes other than his own state of consciousness”. (page 64).
Hereafter follows New Thought teaching:
From the perspective of our participating in a dynamic and evolving universe, there can be only one solution to any problem: a change in attitude and in consciousness. With this in mind, Neville asked the man [a healing case story] to experience himself as if his healing had already taken place…
The secret, the man revealed, was that rather than simply wishing for his health, since the day of their meeting, he had lived from the “assumption of already being well and healed.” And herein we find the secret of propelling our heart´s desires from the state of imagination to the reality of our everyday lives: it´s our ability to feel as if our dreams have already come to life, our wishes are fulfilled, and our prayers already answered. In this way, we actively share in what Wheeler called our “participatory universe.” (page 65).
Let me explain shortly what the two main mantras of New Thought are:
2) Fake It Till You Make It
Self-love is defined as "love of self" or "regard for one's own happiness or advantage", and it has both been conceptualized as a basic human necessity and as a moral flaw, akin to vanity and selfishness, synonymous with amour propre, conceit, conceitedness, egotism, et al. However, throughout the centuries self-love has adopted a more positive connotation through pride parades, Self Respect Movement, self-love protests, the Hippie era, the new age feminist movement as well as the increase in mental health awareness that promotes self-love as intrinsic to self-help and support groups working to prevent substance abuse and suicide.
The "Me" generation (also called Generation W) in the United States is a term referring to the baby boomer generation and the self-involved qualities that some people associate with it. The 1970s were dubbed the "Me decade" by writer Tom Wolfe; Christopher Lasch was another writer who commented on the rise of a culture of narcissism among the younger generation of that era. The phrase caught on with the general public, at a time when "self-realization" and "self-fulfillment" were becoming cultural aspirations to which young people supposedly ascribed higher importance than social responsibility. All this is central in New Thought. It fits well to solipsism, where the existence of other people than oneself is a problem, and therefore also any reason for why love should be love for others and not oneself.
The scientism of psychology has carried out all kinds of attempts of justifying self-love. Self-love was studied by the psychologist Erich Fromm, who studied emotional human behaviour, such as self-esteem and self-worth. In 1956 Fromm proposed that loving oneself is different from being arrogant, conceited or egocentric, meaning that instead caring about oneself and taking responsibility for oneself. Fromm proposed a re-evaluation of self-love in more positive sense, arguing that in order to be able to truly love another person, a person first needs to love oneself in the way of respecting oneself and knowing oneself (e.g. being realistic and honest about one's strengths and weaknesses).
Erik H. Erikson similarly wrote of a post-narcissistic appreciation of the value of the ego, while Carl Rogers saw one result of successful therapy as the regaining of a quiet sense of pleasure in being one's own self.
Lack of self-love increases risk of suicide according to the American Association of Suicidology. In that way the association has created a false dichotomy and a guilt by association trick: “if you are not practicing self-love you´re in risk of suicide”. The association conducted a study in 2008 which researched the impact of low self-esteem and lack of self-love and its relation to suicidal tendencies and attempts. They defined self-love as being "beliefs about oneself (self-based self-esteem) and beliefs about how other people regard oneself (other-based self-esteem)". It concluded that "depression, hopelessness, and low self-esteem are implications of vulnerability factors for suicide ideation" and that "these findings suggest that even in the context of depression and hopelessness, low self-esteem may add to the risk for suicide ideation".
Such psychological reductionisms (self-love extrapolated to a philosophy of life) are a central part of the collective ego-inflation we are witnessing right now. This doesn´t mean that I´m against using the word self-esteem in concrete clinical situations.
2) Fake It Till You Make It
"Fake it till you make it" is an English aphorism which suggests that by imitating confidence, competence, and an optimistic mindset, a person can realize those qualities in their real life. It echoes the underlying principles of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) as a means to enable a change in one's behavior. Or in other words: faith in one's self helps one's self improve.
In the 1920s, Alfred Adler developed a therapeutic technique that he called "acting as if". This strategy gave his clients an opportunity to practice alternatives to dysfunctional behaviors. Adler's method is still used today and is often described as "role play".
Once again, we have a psychological theory, that is being extrapolated to a philosophy of life. This is a reductionism, a perversion of human nature.
In the Law of Attraction movement, "act as if you already have it", or simply "act as if", is a central concept. Law of Attraction and chaos magic (black magic) is therefore two sides of the same coin. In her book, The Secret, Rhonda Byrne writes:
How do you get yourself to a point of believing? Start make-believing. Be like a child, and make-believe. Act as if you have it already. As you make-believe, you will begin to believe you have received.
Another New Thought worshipper, Marianne Williamson, is also supporting the Fake It Till You Make It mantra. In The Gift of Change, she writes:
We vastly underestimate the ability of our subconscious mind to support us in creating change. “Fake it till you make it” is often a good advice. When little girls play “house” or little boys play Spiderman, they are following a subconscious strategy of personality development, using their imaginations to prepare for new realms of being. And we need never stop doing this, unless we choose to (page 39).
Conclusion on Gregg Braden
Gregg Braden books are philosophical shipwrecks. They are incoherent, and in many cases: nonsensical. This is due to that Braden neither uses scientific validation or philosophical argumentation. Instead he does what the Sophists in ancient Greece did. He uses sophistic rhetoric.
What is a Sophist? A Sophist was a teacher in ancient Greece. After centuries of successful trading, the local gods and festivals could no longer satisfy the religious needs of the ancient Athenians. Their spiritual hunger was exacerbated by the stress of city life, by the constant threat of destruction, and by the grim vision of totalitarian Sparta: the vision of Greeks living without light or grace or humour, as though the gods had withdrawn from their world.
Into the crowded space of Periclean Athens came the wandering teachers, selling their “wisdom” to the bewildered populace. Any charlatan could make a killing, if enough people believed in him. Men like Gorgias and Protagoras, who wandered from house to house demanding fees for their instruction, preyed on the gullibility of a people made anxious by war.
To the young Plato, who observed their antics with outrage, these “Sophists” were a threat to the very soul of Athens. One alone among them seemed worthy of attention, and that one, the great Socrates whom Plato immortalised in his dialogues, was not a Sophist, but a true philosopher.
The philosopher, in Plato´s characterisation, awakens the spirit of inquiry. He helps his listeners to discover the truth, and it is they who bring forth, under his catalysing influence, the answer to life´s riddles. The philosopher is the midwife, and his duty is to help us to what we are – free and rational beings, who lack nothing that is required to understand our condition. The Sophist, by contrast, misleads us with cunning fallacies, takes advantage of our weakness, and offers himself as the solution to problems of which he himself is the cause.
There are many signs of the Sophists, but principal among these is that they are subjectivists and relativists. Their teachings are about how to get on in the world, and not about how to find the truth. Anything goes: not facts, but the best story wins. And the result is mumbo-jumbo, condescension and the taking of fees. The philosopher uses plain language, does not talk down to his audience, and never asks for payment. Such was Socrates, and in proposing him as an ideal, Plato defined the social status of the philosopher for centuries to come.
No one should doubt that sophistry is alive and well. My concept of The Matrix Conspiracy is permeated with it. We see it in the mix of postmodern intellectualism (constructivism), management culture, self-help and New Age.
The Sophists are back with a vengeance, and are all the more to be feared, in that they come disguised as philosophers and scientists. For, in this time of helpless relativism and subjectivity, philosophy and science alone have stood against the tide, reminding us that those crucial distinctions on which life depends – between true and false, good and evil, right and wrong – are objective and binding. Philosophy and science have until now spoken with the accents of the academy and laboratory, and not with the voice of the fortune teller.
When Plato founded the first academy, and placed philosophy at the heart of it, he did so in order to protect the precious store of wisdom from the assaults of charlatans, to create a kind of temple to truth in the midst of falsehood, and to marginalise the Sophists who preyed on human confusion.
The Sophists were teachers of rhetoric, who against a fee, taught people how to persuade other people about their “truths”. Rhetoric, or sophistry, is the art of persuasion. Rather than giving reasons and presenting arguments to support conclusions, as Socrates did, then those who use sophistry are employing a battery of techniques, such as emphatic assertion, persuader words and emotive language, to convince the listener, or reader, that what they say or imply is true.
The Sophists taught their pupils how to win arguments by any means available; they were supposedly more interested in teaching ways of getting on in the world than ways of finding the truth, as Socrates did. Therefore any charlatan is welcome. And the use of thought distortions is seen as the best tool, when practising the mantra of the management culture: “It is not facts, but the best story, that wins!”
Sophisms (or thought distortions as I call them) are “techniques”, that, unconscious or conscious, are used from an interest in finding ways of getting on in the world, rather than an interest in finding ways of discovering the truth. Thought distortions are the background for poor reasoning, diversionary ploys, seductive reasoning errors, techniques of persuasion and avoidance, psychological factors, which can be obstacles to clear thought.
Critical thinking, or philosophy, is in opposition to thought distortions. Critical thinking is about spotting thought distortions, and examining them by presenting reasons and evidence in support of conclusions. Critical thinking is the only tool you can use in order to explore, change and restructure thought distortions.
As I have shown on my page, Meditation as an Art of Life, one of the virtues of Critical thinking is refutation of sophisms (Greek: Elenchos). This was Socrates´ basic method of clearing the thoughts, called The Socratic Method. Today this is utterly distorted due to that modern scholars refuse to see that it was a part of a spiritual practice. This distortion is continued in numerous New Age books, where Plato, Socrates and Aristotle, and their use of logic, are described as the roots of all evil. It is no surprise that my book, A Dictionary of Thought Distortions, is so hated among New Agers. It is also thought provoking, that precisely Socrates´s critique of the sophists eventually led to his death (he was prisoned and forced to drink Hemlock juice).
When Braden in rhetorical ways talks about compassion, heart, intuition, healing etc., he is in reality talking about subjectivism and self-love (remember the title of his book: The Science of Self-improvement). He is, among many others, featured on the New Age propaganda site Gaia.com. The following gives a good idea what it is Braden also is doing. Gaia.com says in its introduction:
Explore “Who are we?” and “Why are we here?” with specialists in metaphysics, ancient wisdom, the unexplained and more only on Gaia.
Explore perspectives you won't find in the mainstream on some of life's biggest mysteries.
Dare to Challenge the Status Quo
Explore Seeking Truth
Gaia.com is permeated with references to vibrations and energy, advices to avoid the negative (you can tell good people by their eyes), stop doubting, follow your intuitions and premonitions, flow with coincidences, believe in the purposiveness of everything, join thousands of others on the quest, turn into your feelings and evolve to a higher plane. Follow your intuitions and dreams as you go through your spiritual evolution. Fact or fiction, it doesn´t matter. Truth is what you make it. Life´s too short and too complicated to deal with reality. Make your own reality.
This New Age subjectivism and relativism encourage people to believe that reality is whatever you want it to be. The line between fact and fiction gets blurry and obscured. Subjectivism shuts down people´s critical faculties, making them suggestible for any Ideology. It involves making people quit thinking critically in order to open them up to thinking Magical about that Subjective validation and Communal reinforcement lead to bliss. Hypnosis is in New Age directly used as a means for inducing in people certain worldviews, or, actually, one ideology: The Matrix Conspiracy. Furthermore: also meditation and prayer will work as hypnosis, when combined with a certain ideology (also see my article Hypnosis, hypnotherapy and the art of self-deception).
YOU’RE HERE FOR A REASON
Your intuition tells you there’s more to our story, something you’re not finding in your current paradigm. You can feel it in your bones. We are all connected, we’re part of something greater, and there is something more meaningful in this life that’s not present in our daily routines.
Your intuition is right.
Gaia is here with some new ideas and the world’s largest resource of conscious media to – well –empower the evolution of consciousness. That’s a rather massive vision, but truthfully, it’s why we do what we do at Gaia.
We want to create a new reality, one of mindful people living in harmony with our environment and each other. And with you, we can do it. Thank you for being here.
We promise to light the fire if you will carry the torch.
All this is followed by pseudo-scholarship of all kinds:
So, Gaia.com is prophesying a New World Order (New Age) to emerge: the world of Alternative History, Alternative Physics, Alternative Medicine and, ultimately, Alternative Reality.
Let me repeat the question which I have asked a couple of times in this text series:
How, given the recent and sorry story of ideologically motivated conceptions of knowledge – Lysenkoism in Stalin´s Soviet Union, for example, or Nazi critiques of “Jewish science” – could it again have become acceptable to behave in this way?
New Thought, especially, is engaged in a huge project of re-defining and re-writing, both the original wisdom traditions, modern science, and eventually the whole of the human history. Presenting a new human story is one of the few things Braden are open about. Rhetorically, he calls it “bridging ancient wisdom and modern science”.
In my article The Sokal Hoax you can read more about this development.
The Fake News exposing website Snopes.com has this to say about one of Gaia.com´s articles on alien mummies: http://www.snopes.com/alien-mummy-peru/
Finally, Gaia.com (formerly known as Gaiam TV) web site has a long history of providing a platform for false and spurious pseudo-science, conspiracy theories, and paranormal claims. The company charges $95.40 per year for unlimited access to videos about remote viewing, contact with angels, alien abduction, crop circles, and the like.
Jay Weidner is the Senior Director of Production for gaia.com (see the Matrix Dictionary for the entry on Jay Weidner – he likes to compare himself with…well, Indiana Jones).
Let me, in that connection, end my examination of Braden´s books with some commentaries on his journeys. I will do this in order to show the American cultural appropriation and colonization he promotes, - and how he does it without any trace of conscience (or compassion). Because, he is not the only one.
We have already looked at Watkins Spiritual 100 List. The American New Thought movement are right now swarming the world with their missionaries. However, in the same way as Braden, they never give any open admittance of that they belong to a certain American spiritual movement (except an inresistible urge to call themselves “Thought Leaders”). They consider themselves as spiritual freethinkers. As already mentioned: they come in all kinds of disguises: as philosophers, scientists, coaches, healers, shamans, management theorists, psychologists, therapists, etc., etc., etc. They live and grow via the internet, which at the same time provides them with fake diploma mills and predatory journals where they can have papers “scientific validated” (peer reviewed) by paying for it.
When Braden writes about his “research journeys” he uses the same movie dramatical effects as Rhonda Byrne in The Secret. This is also a trick Gaia.com uses. The effects lie somewhere in between science fiction, The Da Vinci Code and Indiana Jones. The message is the same: all original wisdom traditions confirm what Braden has written in his books. Braden has been there, he has visited the places and the people. There is especially one journey he returns to, also in other books. He writes:
While this appears to be revolutionary news to modern science [The Divine Matrix], it´s been accepted as the way things are in ancient traditions and indigenous cultures for centuries. In the words of times past, scribes, mystics, healers, and scholars did their very best to preserve this great secret of our relationship to the universe and pass it on to us. Sometimes we find it in the places where we would least expect to encounter such powerful wisdom.
From the temple walls and tombs in the deserts of Egypt to the Gnostic wisdom of the ancient Nag Hammadi library to the traditional medicine practiced today throughout the American Southwest, the language that breathes life into the possibilities of our imagination, dreams, and prayers remains with us. Perhaps the clearest example of this language is described in the words of a man who lived in a monastery nearly 15,000 feet above sea level, high on the Tibetan plateue.
In the spring of 1998, I had the opportunity to facilitate a combined research trip and pilgrimage into the highlands of central Tibet for 22 days (page 83) […]
The group Braden is talking about is of course nothing but a group of American New Age tourists, and he was just a tourist guide.
[…] During that time, the group and I found ourselves immersed in some of the most magnificent, rugged, pristine, and remote land remaining on the planet today. Along the way, we visited 12 monasteries, 2 nunneries, and some of the most beautiful humans that you could ever imagine, including monks, nuns, nomads, and pilgrims [..].
Pay notice to his exoticism. Exoticism (from 'exotic') is a trend in European art and design, whereby artists became fascinated with ideas and styles from distant regions, and drew inspiration from them. This often involved surrounding foreign cultures with mystique and fantasy which owed more to European culture than to the exotic cultures themselves: this process of glamorisation and stereotyping is called 'exoticization'. First stimulated by Eastern trade in the 16th and 17th centuries, interest in non-western (particularly "Oriental", i.e. Middle Eastern or Asian) art by Europeans became more and more popular following European colonialism. Today we can talk about an American New Age colonialism, also called cultural appropriation.
In the following quote, I will ask you to pay attention to how Braden´s exoticization of a certain Tibetan abbot is followed by a hard-core quote mining trick, that shows a way of abusing other people which is carried out without any trace of conscience, even consciousness.
[…] It was during that time that I found myself face-to-face with the abbot of one of the monasteries and got the chance to ask the question that we´d traveled so far and long to ask.
On an icy morning, we found ourselves cramped into a tiny chapel surrounded by Buddhist altars and ancient thangkas (the intricately brocaded tapestries that depict the great teachings of the past). I focused my attention directly on the eyes of the timeless-looking man seated lotus-style in front of me. Through our translator, I asked him the same question that I´d asked every monk and nun we´d met throughout our pilgrimage. “When we see your prayers,” I began, “what are you doing? When we watch you intone and chant for 14 and 16 hours a day; when we see the bells, bowls, gongs, chimes, mudras, and mantras on the outside, what´s happening to you on the inside?”
A powerful sensation rippled through my body as the translator shared the abbot´s answer. “You´ve never seen our prayers,” he said, “because a prayer cannot be seen.” Adjusting the heavy wool robes beneath his feet, the abbot continued, “What you´ve seen is what we do to create the feeling in our bodies. Feeling is the prayer!”
How beautiful, I thought. And how simple! Just as the late-20th-century experiments had shown. It´s human feeling and emotion that affect the stuff our reality is made of – it´s our inner language that changes the atoms, electrons, and photons of the outer world. However, this is less about the actual words we utter and more about the feeling that they create within us. It´s the language of emotions that speaks to the quantum forces of the universe…feeling is what the Divine Matrix recognizes (page 84-85)
Hereafter Braden sets up “Key 9” in his persuasion technique, which is the central New Thought dogma:
Feeling is the language that “speaks” to the Divine Matrix. Feel as though your goal is accomplished and your prayers is already answered (page 85).
Braden ends his story about the abbot:
The abbot was telling us the same thing as the great scientists of the 20th century. Not only was he passing on the same ideas that the experimenters had documented, he was taking it one step further: He was sharing the instructions that describe how we can speak the language of quantum possibilities, and he was doing so through a technique that we know today as a form of prayer. No wonder prayers work miracles! They put us in touch with the pure space where the miracles of our minds become the reality of our world (page 85).
The above quotation exposes confirmation bias in its uttermost absurdity. Confirmation bias refers to a type of selective thinking whereby one tends to notice and to look for what confirms one´s beliefs, and to ignore, not look for, or undervalue the relevance of what contradicts one´s beliefs. The problem of positive thinking (New Thought) is that this way of thinking enforces confirmation bias.
The tendency to give more attention and weight to the positive and the confirmatory has been shown to influence memory. When digging into our memories for data relevant to a position, we are likely to recall data that confirms the position.
Researchers are sometimes guilty of confirmation bias by setting up experiments or framing their data in ways that will tend to confirm their hypotheses. They compound the problem by proceeding in ways that avoid dealing with data that would contradict their hypotheses. I would guess that Braden doesn´t know what confirmation bias is at all.
Neither the abbot, nor the great scientists of the 20th century, ever said anything that confirms Braden´s ideas. The first should be easy for anyone to see. The abbot wasn´t even presented with the ideas that Braden says he confirms. That Braden in fact exposes this through his own writings, witnesses about how little consciousness he has about what it is he is doing. That the great scientists of the 20th century hasn´t said anything that confirm it neither, is documented in this booklet. Braden is just a simple American liar and con artist.
A Short History of the American Con Artist
I will end this texts series with a general short history of the American con artist, a problem which we, who live outside the US, only see the beginning of, since these New Thought missionaries in increasing degree are going abroad.
In the beginning of my article on The Matrix Conspiracy, I wrote:
Many of the popular conspiracy theories come from USA. This is hardly because that the European governments, companies, institutions and organizations are more reliable than the American. However, the freedom loving Americans all feel a personal responsibility as the society's watchdogs. For better or for worse it is lying as a fundamental value within the culture, that you hunt the truth at any price. This mentality has created a line of interesting stories, which all point towards another truth, than the one we know – or have become deceived to believe in.
In my update to the article I wrote:
With my concept of The Matrix Conspiracy I put myself in the risk of being accused of being a paranoid conspiracy theorist. This is not the case. I´m just making aware of that there exists a conspiracy theory which is called The Matrix Conspiracy, and that this conspiracy in fact are a global spreading ideology. An ideology I´m highly critical towards. My critique is in that way ideological critique, or cultural critique.
The concept of the Matrix comes from mathematics (also see the above definitions), but is more popular known from the movie the Matrix, which asks the question whether we might live in a computer simulation. In The Matrix though, there is also an evil demon, or evil demons, namely the machines which keep the humans´ in tanks linked to black cable wires that stimulates the virtual reality of the Matrix. Doing this the machines can use the human bodies as batteries that supply the machines with energy. This leads of course to questions of evil scientists, Sophists, etc. It is the fascination of the virtual reality that deceives the humans.
The philosophy behind the movie comes from especially two philosophers: Rene Descartes and George Berkeley. But the idea that the whole of reality might not exist at all, is an essential American way of thinking. The problem is that this way of thinking is forced upon people globally.
The following “Short History of the American Con Artist” is divided into two parts:
1) America as a Fantasyland
2) Evolutionism as a Science Fiction Producer
1) America as a Fantasyland
Susan Jacoby's new book The Age of American Unreason might be viewed as a kind of sequel to Richard Hofstadter's 1963 classic, “Anti-Intellectualism in American Life.” A cultural history of the last forty years, The Age of American Unreason focuses on the convergence of social forces—usually treated as separate entities—that has created a perfect storm of anti-rationalism. These include the upsurge of religious fundamentalism, with more political power today than ever before; the failure of public education to create an informed citizenry; and the triumph of video over print culture. Sparing neither the right nor the left, Jacoby asserts that Americans today have embraced a universe of “junk thought” that makes almost no effort to separate fact from opinion.
With mordant wit, she surveys an anti-rationalist landscape extending from pop culture to a pseudo-intellectual universe of "junk thought." Disdain for logic and evidence defines a pervasive malaise fostered by the mass media, triumphalist religious fundamentalism, mediocre public education, a dearth of fair-minded public intellectuals on the right and the left, and, above all, a lazy and credulous public. It is a breeding ground for populism.
In my articles on Donald Trump (The Confabulation of Trump, and its update, A Critique of Donald Trump), I showed that populism is the key factor in the election of Donald Trump as the President of US. The key elements of this kind of populism are anti-elitism and nativism, which can translate into anti-immigrant views. Donald Trump, and his government, are defending concepts of “alternate truths” about Trump´s ideas, and “fake news” about any critique of him. Trump is completely indifferent to what is true and false, never speaks positively about democracy, equality before the law or human rights. He openly admires foreign dictators, who define leadership as the ability to suppress the opposition and who led an election campaign where people who contradicted him were removed by force. So, we actually have a quite good idea about what we are dealing with.
Donald Trump seems like the ultimate proof of the premise of Kurt Andersen´s book Fantasyland – How America Went Haywire. An entertainer, reality tv star, conspiracy theorist, con artist and pathological liar are now sitting in the White House. In his book Andersen argues for that USA was created by people, who likes good stories and the believe in the, some times a bit too, fantastic worlds. The book describes the Trump-phenomenon as a direct consequence of the land´s history. The national character is determined by the right of believing what you want. No matter what others are saying. This moment in history, the era of Donald Trump, where facts no longer are facts, are quite natural for Americans.
In the start of Fantasyland Andersen defines to decisive movements for the creation of the American identity: the strong religious protestant immigrants, and the English colonialists. Other versions of American history have also told this story, but Andersen is doing it in quite another way.
When the puritans went from Europe to America, they precisely did this because they insisted on the right to believe what they wanted to, even if the surrounded world believed they were crazy. The first English attempts on settling in America was an attempt of copying the Spaniards, who had found gold in South America and Mexico. The English dreamt fever dreams about their own Eldorado. However, there was no gold in Jamestown in Virginia, which became the British´s first anchor in the new world. Neverthelesss, they kept on believing that the grand gold discovery was just around the next corner.
Andersen believes that the Nation is created by what at that time was extremist protestant sects and people who kept on digging after gold, despite that people died like flies. In other words: religious nutcases and soldiers of fortune, who hoped about being rich in a moment.
Andersen hereafter follows the American history, which slowly over the centuries develops into the present Fantasyland, where reality constantly is being questioned, and where the irrational and false have become respectable and perhaps unstoppable.
Over witch hunts, revivalist preachers, Mormons, gold diggers, quacks, capitalists, sects, immigrants and soldiers of fortune, who believe they can become millionaires over a night, the book is going through the history of America. A history which are accentuated by strong individuality, anti-establishment-culture, extreme religiousness and the believe in the fantastic – that anything is possible.
The classical American enterprise plays a central role in the development. The American idea, that everything can be sold or bought – even religion, is quite unique for USA. Andersen says that before John D. Rockefeller ended up as the world´s richest man, the oil baron´s father got rich on a false pink elixir drink by the name Microbe Killer, which apparently was able to cure all diseases.
The establishment of Hollywood´s dream universe marks another turning-point on USA´s path towards the ultimate state of “Fantasyland”. The most famous people in USA are now actors – persons who pretend to be other persons, who exists in an alternative version of reality. In the movie theatres´ seats, everybody can now live a life with unrealistic stories, and they can dream themselves away into another reality.
The 1960s puts even more fire to this. The hippies´ rebellion against the existing norms begins in a beautiful way, but leads to a widespread relativism, where the subjective view becomes more important than the objective. The political left, and its insistence that you can perceive many things in different ways, was gaining foothold in the academical world and therefore it was turned into the society as such. With time the political right was following and has taken relativism into new heights. Andersen argues that the 1968s somehow is partly responsible for the denial of facts coming from the political right. I have myself argued for this. American weapon enthusiasts, climate deniers and conspiracy theoreticians are in a high degree using information which are against the objective truth.
The hippies´ message about that you can believe in anything because truth is constructed, created a markedly movement. In the 1960s all forms of belief and speculations were suddenly made possible, says Andersen.
Around the turn of the century another revolution happened: the internet allows the spread of fake news, and wrong information and viewpoints explode. Conspiracy theorists have found a haven here. Donald Trump, for example, created his political platform and power base in the republican party on the background of a conspiracy theory: that the former president, Barack Obama, not is born in USA.
The internet creates a perfect infrastructure to obscure ideas and beliefs, which before were long from mainstream. Alternative realities could now be discharged to a huge audience, which the traditional gatekeepers couldn´t control.
In 1961 the former president Dwight D. Eisenhower warned against the “military industrial complex”. He believed that the mix of interests of the US military and the weapon industry could have catastrophic consequences. Andersen, however, is worried about the “fantasy industrial complex” where the mix of business, religion, entertainment, technology and politics, have created a culture which are out of touch with reality. Where truth not is truth, facts not is facts, and where you can believe whatever you want to believe.
People want to be entertained. Everything can now become entertainment, and entertainment sneaks in in all parts of society. Andersen claims that this is important in order to understand why the difference between fantasy and reality has become blurred.
Americans are basically more religious and believe more in supernatural phenomena than most other “highly developed” societies. According to Andersen, half of the Americans are completely convinced that there exists a divine heaven where you come up when you die. Two-thirds believe that there exist angels and demons, while half see God as a male being and not just a universal power.
But the Americans also believe in all kind of other stuff. A third is convinced that aliens have visited earth and that the government has invented a cure for cancer, but keeps it hidden for the population. Almost a quarter believe that vaccines creates autism – and that Donald Trump won most votes at the presidential election in 2016. 15 procent believes that the medias or the government have inserted technology in the TV signals which can control peoples´ minds.
Andersen argues that the strong Protestantism, mixed with the thoughts of the enlightenment time, have created a unique situation – and a problem for America. The impulse in Protestantism to find meaning in everything, mixed with the enlightenment time´s focus on empirical evidence, have created Americans´ mania with connecting all points. Everything has to be explained. Irrationality mixed with rationality.
The special about the American Protestantism was, among others, that you were in completely new country where you could do what you liked to do: create your own faith societies, churches and cities. Where everything was possible. People could in fact be rich overnight. This was mixed with the less fortunate aspects of the Enlightenment time. Not Voltaire, Jefferson and Hume, but on the contrary the viewpoint that you can believe in anything. When you in this way don´t care about normal rules of evidence, for example through science, you end in an almost religious believe, that you can define your own reality; a phenomenon which is very American and are characterizing the situation today. This is the problem of reductionism, pseudoscience and scientism. The insistence that science should be united with spirituality. New Age. Quite central in New Age is the idea that you can create your own reality, an idea which often is supplied with all kinds of pseudoscientific statements that claim to prove it. There is no consideration of evidence at all.
Many analyses and evaluations points towards that USA is a split country, where the political difference is so large that the country almost isn´t connected. But according to Andersen there is another split which is more important: the split between those who believe in science and fact, and the part of the population who just believes what they feel are right. This is a more fundamental split and a much more dangerous one. The problem is that the ones who believe in facts also have develop into a typical American fundamentalism, namely atheist fundamentalism.
Andersen is very critical towards Trump. But Fantasyland was actually written long before Trump was nominated as the presidential candidate for the Republican party in the summer of 2016. Andersen had to rewrite it, so that the president could be included. He had good experiences since he had been writing about Trump in several years for different American publications.
When one of Donald Trump´s attorneys and a near political supporter, the former New York mayor, Rudy Giulliani, in front of rolling cameras, should explain why the president didn´t had to be questioned in the Mueller investigation, another low in the American post-factual world, was seen. He said that the argument for why the president needed to give an explanation, since he just could tell the truth and therefore hadn´t anything to fear, was a silly argument. Because that would just be one single version of truth, which not is truth.
The TV host answered confused: “truth is truth.”
“No, truth is not just truth,” was the surrealistic explanation from the president´s attorney.
One of the promises Donald Trump gave the Americans was: “I will give you anything” and “all the dreams, you have dreamt for your country, will be fulfilled”. Andersen believes that Trump´s feat both was to use the Americans´ distrust in the democratic system and at the same time play on Americans´ unrealistic dreams and fantasies about National greatness.
Trump is just a symbol on the underlying development of distorted reality and indifference towards facts. It will still be there when Trump no longer is president, says Andersen. But because Trump incarnates this development, it makes it even more clear how crazy America might seem to non-Americans.
In my article on Oprah Winfrey, I mentioned that she was mentioned as a possible 2020 candidate for President. She hasn´t announced anything yet. But one of her spiritual teachers, Marianne Williamson, on the other hand, has announced that she is running for president in 2020. Marianne Williamson is a New Ager who teaches A Course in Miracles. A quite central mantra in her teaching is that reality doesn´t exist. I will return to her presidential campaign in a coming article.
2) Evolutionism as a Science Fiction Producer
If there is a red thread running through the Matrix Conspiracy, it is evolutionism. Just how close to the concept of the Matrix (the theory that we live, or ought to live, in a computer simulation) evolutionism has developed today, ran into my mind when I wrote an article about the American psychedelic futurist and promotor of The Californian Ideology, David Jay Brown. The so-called ”Californian Ideology” have emerged promoting a form of techno-utopia as a reachable goal. "The Californian Ideology" is a 1995 essay by English media theorists Richard Barbrook and Andy Cameron of the University of Westminster (download). Barbrook describes it as a "critique of dotcom neoliberalism". In the essay, Barbrook and Cameron argue that the rise of networking technologies in Silicon Valley in the 1990s was linked to American neoliberalism and a paradoxical hybridization of beliefs from the political left and right in the form of hopeful technological determinism. This ideology mixed New Left and New Right beliefs together based on their shared interest in anti-statism, the counterculture of the 1960s, and techno-utopianism. Again: a direct product of American fantasy, or rather, science fiction.
Transhumanism is an intellectual movement which is greatly influenced by science fiction and presents an idealistic point of view of what technology could do for humanity in the future, not what it can do; it's all hypothetical. It advocates for the transformation of the human condition by developing and making widely available sophisticated technologies to ”greatly enhance human intellect and physiology”. It talks about brain emulation, immortality, cryonics and mind uploading. All in all: a dream about that humans should melt together with machines and computers.
In that connection it is worth reminding that these ideas now are fully in action, and implanted through internet, TV, mobile phones and social medias as for example Facebook (see my two articles on Facebook: Is Facebook as Matrix Machine?, and: The Return of The Sophists). Everyone is today more or less associated with screens instead of reality.
In his book, The New Science of Psychedelics: At the Nexus of Culture, Consciousness, and Spirituality, David Jay Brown writes:
I think DNA is ultimately trying to create a world where the imagination is externalized, where the mind and the external world become synchronized as one, so that basically whatever we can imagine can become a reality. Literally. And I think that everything throughout our entire evolution has been moving slowly toward that goal. In the past thousand years, it´s been very steady. And through nanotechnology, through artificial intelligence, through advanced robotics, I think we´re entering into an age where we´ll be able to control matter with our thoughts and actually be able to create anything that our minds can conceive of. We´re very quickly heading into a time where machines are going to be more intelligent than we are, and we´re going to most likely merge, I think, with these intelligent machines and develop capacities and abilities that we can barely imagine right now, such as the ability to self-transform. What we can do with computers – digital technology, the way we can morph things on a computer screen – is the beginning of understanding that that´s how reality itself is organized, that we can do that with physical reality through nanotechnology and artificial intelligence, that the digital nature of reality itself will allow us to externalize whatever we think. So, I think that eventually reality will become like a computer graphic screen, and we´ll be able to create whatever we want. That sound right?
David Jay Brown´s ideas are common in certain very influential parts of America, for example Silicon Valley and the so-called Californian Ideology, and I found that there here is a conscious strategy going on, which through technology, internet and social media wants the rest of the world to adapt this way of thinking.
That Brown supports the fascistic concept of the evolution of consciousness can be seen in his own evolutionary theory. He describes it in the chapter Head West and Get High, Young Man. Here he tells the story about that when he had completed his master´s degree in neuroscience at New York University in 1986, he drove across country to California, the place that he love more than anywhere else on Earth. A “beautiful, awe-inspiring, cannabis-fueled drive across the country…”.
Heading west was important to him. Not surprisingly, he learned from Timothy Leary and Robert Anton Wilson that “for thousands of years the most experimentally minded and cultural innovative people have been steadily migrating in a westward pattern around the planet”. Brown had read Leary´s essay “Spinning Up the Genetic Highway” (from the book The Intelligence Agents – [sic]) when he was tripping on blotter acid during a break from college at the age of eighteen, and he realized that he needed to move to California as soon as possible if he wanted to find other people who were thinking brilliant ideas like himself. He writes that someone once asked Leary, “What do you do after you turn on?” Leary replied, “find the others.”
Westward migration made sense to me while I was tripping, because I realized that migrating west means that you´re moving against the spin of the planet, which spins from east to west. From an extraterrestrial vantage point (i.e., high off the planet) moving west can be seen as a climb upward over time, as though humans for thousands of years have been faithfully ascending a giant mountain that stretches from India to Hawaii (page 28-29).
Brown´s claim is that if one studies the history of human civilizations, it seems that those areas of the world where people have been the most culturally experimental and technologically innovative have steadily moved west since the beginning of the first developed countries that exist to this day. He writes:
The oldest surviving nations on the planet can be found in the East, and those places where great cultural advancements have taken place seem to light up in a westward (i.e., upwardly) directional sequence, beginning in India and China, expanding into the Middle East, and winding into eastern Europe, then into western Europe and Great Britain, to the east coast of America, and finally to the west coast of America, where California and Hawaii represent the current peaks of this global migration process (page 29).
There you are. A progressivist form of fascism, directly taken out of the handbook of
The Matrix Conspiracy Fascism. Brown continues:
When one travels eastward from California, one encounters societies that have increasingly older and older histories, less and less tolerance for individual differences, more and more suspicion about anything new or different, and greater and greater respect for and attachment to authority and tradition. Traveling west from China, one sees this pattern going in reverse, until one reaches California and Hawaii, where there is considerable lifestyle and cultural experimentation and tolerance for individual differences. I agree with Wilson and Leary that traveling eastward takes you into the past, and moving westward carries you into the future. The planetary time zones on Earth should not be separated by hours, Leary said, but rather by centuries (page 29).
Greater tolerance for individual differences? He continues:
Why has California primarily settled from Europe and not Asia? Where were all the great Asian explorers in history? Why did the world explorers who settled the Americas come primarly from western Europe and not eastern Asia? Why is California so psychedelic, so tolerant and open-minded, and so culturally experimental compared to the rest of the world? The answers to these questions, I suspect, reside in our understanding of planetary spin. We evolved by moving upwards, by getting high, by moving against the spin of the Earth (page 30).
I guess that America, hereunder California, shouldn´t be taken as the first example of a higher tolerance compared to other places in the world. Racism in the United States against non-whites is widespread and has been since the colonial era.
Anybody with just a tiny bit of historical knowledge knows about the treatment of Native Americans and African Americans, which continues today (try to make a quick Wikipedia search for racism in America). And this is not only limited to Native Americans and Black Americans; just about anybody with another skin color than white are subjects of intolerance in America. If Brown thinks that California is beyond this take a look at the history of racism in California (you´re in for a long study). But of course, as the above-mentioned Susan Jacoby has pointed out: Americans (hereunder Brown) are completely ignorant to history. Brown is just one of many examples of the decline of education in America. It is though-provoking that he apparently has earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Southern California (USC) in 1983. At New York University in 1986, he earned a master's degree in psychobiology. At USC, he assisted with research in a doctoral program for behavioral neuroscience.
The main problem is that America has succeeded in planting the idea in peoples´ minds that everything coming from America is innovative and better than the rest of the world. Therefore we are facing an entrance into a global Brave New World, as Aldous Huxley already has prophesized.
A Critique of the New Thought Movement and the Law of Attraction
Evolutionism – The Red Thread in The Matrix Conspiracy (free ebook)
Donald Trump: A Master Practitioner in the New Trend in Psychology: Positive Thinking (Donald Trump is also a practitioner of the New Thought dogmas. And with him we see the first president who openly is a New Thought “Thought Leader”).
A Critique of the Simulation Theory and the Rise of Digital Totalitarianism
The Matrix Conspiracy Updates
The Matrix Conspiracy Fascism
The Psychedelic Renaissance and David Jay Brown
A Critique of Diploma Mills (Americans have a tendency to write Dr., MA, MD, or PHD, as extensions of their names. They do this on websites and on their books. Precisely this obsession with titles ought to cause a certain skepticism. Again: this is something which is offered online. On the internet we see a rise of "experts" with titles such as Dr., MA, MD, or PHD, but which basically is taken from fake online universities. We also see fake scientific journals where you can have your articles published and stamped with "peer reviewed", etc., just by paying for it (see my article: The Rising Problem of Predator Open Access Publishing). So, the whole of Western science is in progress of being destabilized).
On the destabilization of Western science:
Yuval Noah Harari: A Neoliberal Marionette Puppet in the Dance Between Western Surveillance Capitalism and Chinese Communism
Richard Dawkins and The Rise of Atheist Scientism (Scientism Critique: Part 1) - free Ebook.
Rupert Sheldrake and the Rise of Neo-Lysenkoism (Scientism Critique: Part 2) - free booklet.