Paper I submitted for my Atlantic University TP5100 Course – November 8, 2020
Last semester in your Science and Spirituality course, you used the analogy that science and religion or spirituality weren’t even on the same playing field. They had both gone to their separate corners and were not even talking the same language. In our postmodernist world of the last century or so, as the rational scientific worldview dominated Western thought, religion and spirituality have become significantly marginalized.
This assignment is to use the course material and personal thoughts regarding a way to repair the split between science and spirituality. I do not believe Ken Wilber’s theories, particularly what he covers in Up from Eden, the theory of Spiral Dynamics, nor the Integral Theory of Consciousness, will get us across the science and spirituality chasm. While they do address spiritual topics, these theories are deeply rooted in a scientific method and squarely on science’s playing field.
I can appreciate their attempt to use a scientific method to attract a more rationalistic crowd. However, the thickness of Wilber’s material, for example, makes it difficult to digest, and that in itself makes it inaccessible for most people. As you’ve pointed out, what comes from within, what makes up spirituality, or an intense moment that moves us to tears like the joy from being in nature or seeing a child born, cannot be measured, prodded, and poked. It just is, and it transcends even language.
Riane Eisler’s view of the Gaia tradition has merit as a means for bridging the science-spirituality divide. First, however, we must accept that her view, which posits that a time in the past is more ideal or advanced then today, is correct. This contradicts Wilber’s pre-trans fallacy, which P.T. Mistlberger describes as “the idea that ‘trans-ego’ states of mind (so-called spiritual states) can be confused with ‘pre-ego’ states (child-like states), resulting in erroneous views about spirituality, and issues related to responsibility” (Mistlberger, n.d.). I side with Eisler, particularly as I watch more and more episodes of Ancient Aliens! How did ancient people build something as complex and perfectly designed as the pyramids with supposedly rudimentary tools they had at their disposal and limited knowledge?!
Instead of viewing everything, including consciousness, as evolving from a more primitive or lower state to increasingly advanced ways of being, Eisler looks back and sees paradise, followed by a period of paradise lost. Which is precisely where we currently find ourselves today. Instead of a male-dominated, master-slave hierarchy, Eisler harkens back to a period thousands of years ago to what she calls a “partnership society.” In this culture, women were equal to men, and not only were the genders in balance, but so was nature and spirituality, and “neither woman nor nature were devalued and exploited” (Eisler, p. 7).
This concept of a balanced, partnership society is one way to begin bridging the science-spirituality gap. Not only did science veer towards an excessively rationalistic direction – thereby ignoring the supernatural and the spiritual elements of humanity – it is used in no small measure to bolster today’s masculine, hierarchical structure, and mega-institutions. While the talking points suggest that science has done wonders for humanity, the truth is that science is paid for and, therefore, nearly exclusively for the benefit of huge corporate and government interests. Whether it’s technology, communications, health, pharmaceutical, or the military, the role of science is instrumental, and as they say, “cash is king.” One of the reasons outlier fields like parapsychology don’t get more recognition, i.e., funding, despite its extensive use of the scientific method, is because there is no money to be made in what they’re researching.
While science serves its big government and big corporations masters, humanity is demanding more. I ascribe to the belief that we’re changing from 3D to 5D, and with it comes a higher frequency and a greater demand for the type of partnership society Eisler discusses. 5D is all about unity, compassion, love, community, and balance between nature, the environment, and spirituality, similar to ideas presented in her paper.
Whether we’re transforming to a higher level because of an evolutionary process or regaining a paradise lost is secondary. The main issue is that we’re heading that way, despite attempts by the powers that shouldn’t be to keep us locked in a system of manipulation and usury. While we have a way to go, we are seeing greater rights and roles for women and are at least recognizing that we need to restore balance to nature and spirituality.
Much of what is now spilling out in the media and on the streets today in the United States and across Europe is this very battle. It’s pitting humanity demanding more against the institutional structures that have dominated them for so long. You can say it’s the Piscean Age battling with the Aquarian Age, populists versus globalists, or patriots versus Marxists; regardless, it’s a fight for the hearts and minds of humanity. Transformation is never easy, and when you consider where we’ve been, getting to 5D will not be easy. Old habits die hard.
And how does that impact the science-spirituality gap? When we have all successfully transformed to a higher dimension – to a partnership society – one of its hallmarks will be the end of polarity. There will be no more battles or differences and no more separate playing fields. There will only be love, compassion, and unity. I know it sounds far-fetched and a bit “kumbaya-ish,” particularly looking out at the world today. And the battle will certainly be around for a while. However, it is the direction we’re heading, and the genie won’t go back into the bottle. It remains to be seen whether it happens in our lifetime or not.
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Eisler, R. (1987). “The gaia tradition and the partnership future: an ecofeminist manifesto,” Reweaving the World, Atlantic University TS 503. Retrieved from https://moodle.atlanticuniv.edu/pluginfile.php?file=%2F55221%2Fmod_resource%2Fcontent%2F1%2FEisler%2C%20The%20Gaia%20Tradition.pdf.
Paine-Clemes, B. (2015). Spiral dynamics and evolutionary consciousness, Virginia Beach, VA: Fourth Dimension Press. Retrieved from https://moodle.atlanticuniv.edu/mod/resource/view.php?id=43044.
P.T. Mistlberger (n.d.). “The pre-trans fallacy. Retrieved November 8, 2020, from http://www.ptmistlberger.com/the-pre-trans-fallacy.php
Wilber, K. (1981), Up from Eden, New York, NY: Doubleday