This chapter reveals the initial sequence of patterns that appeared to me, decades ago, while in a threshold state of consciousness between dreaming and waking.
Visions appeared as if arrayed upon a chalkboard in my mind. The graphics below are designed to give you the feel of those primitive lessons.
The first dream-time image is of a cross that formed four spaces:
Why so? The symbol first chalked onto the board looked like the plus sign used by mathematicians; however, no numbers arose for me to complete the arithmetic. Departments of Transportation use this sign to caution of an upcoming intersection, though it carried no sense of warning or alarm. Neither was it in the proportion of the cross that evokes Christianity.
With those possibilities crossed out, the simple symbol continued to recur vividly. Why? Was it related to my quest to understand the hidden commonality between Creation stories?
Quadrants and subsequent geometric models have continued to appear each morning, gradually becoming three-dimensional to eventually examine the shared truth of Genesis and the Tao de Ching from every angle, as we will explore together in the following chapters of Quadernity.
A young student was asked on a quiz to “Show your thinking”, as opposed to “Show your arithmetic”.
In explaining how the abstract images that come to my mind are studied, interpreted and validated, I, too, will be showing my thinking — revealing both the process and the product of my work. Please picture me, though, with a smiley face 🙂 for I love sharing all of this with you!
First Words Appear
Since the entire process began with contrasting creation stories (see A Puzzle of Creation Stories), the word ‘Creator’ brought God to mind, and I remembered the first thing ‘Created’ was light.
In Genesis, God says,
Let there be light. And there was light. And God saw the light.
According to the third statement, it is clear that God is the Seer of the light that is Seen.
Religions around the world have a wide range of beliefs about naming and depicting the Creator. With all due respect, for purposes of the chalkboard illustrations, I am using a light-hearted iconography.
As the dialogue between my questions and the chalkboard patterns became animated, it was the quadrants themselves, not the crosspieces, that took on roles. I gave the quadrants three-letter labels to identify them in shorthand.
- First letter: U stands for upper quadrants, the L stands for lower quadrants.
- Second letter: L for left or R for right.
- Third letter: Q for quadrant.
Many think that by simply saying, “Let there be light,” God created light out of nothing. When God said, “Let there be light,” to whom was He speaking? Are we sure He was alone, talking to Himself?
Maybe the statement denotes His establishment of receptivity for light. Perhaps Creator/God expects to see the light and awaits it.
More Words Appear
The words ‘Subject’ and ‘Object’ (expanded definitions in Essential Vocabulary) came into focus in the lower quadrants.
My mind went first to the grammar school definitions of ‘subject’ and ‘object’ and how they apply in sentence structure. For instance, if I say, “I make things happen,” the subject is ‘I’, and the things that happen are the objects — they are at the effect of the actions I take to bring them about. And if I say, “Happenings affect me,” then it is reversed. The happenings are causal, and the effect they have is on ‘me’.
Here are those definitions in a chart:
The label Seer indicates one who has Seen something. Seeing has already happened before the Seer can be labeled as such.
Also, the act of Seeing must have happened before we can say that an Object has been Seen.
Therefore, the labels, Seer and Seen, are valid and meaningfully assigned only post-Seeing.
Brand-new questions tickled me in a way reminiscent of how it feels to contemplate a koan such as, “What is the sound of one hand clapping?”
If Seer and Seen take their places in space-time only after the act of Seeing, what are they before?
One day I was pondering these questions while roaming, coffee-in-hand, around my local bookstore. My attention was deeply drawn to a particular book, so I picked it up and quite randomly (or so I thought), flipped it open. This passage was the first thing I saw in The Bit and the Pendulum: From Quantum Computing to M Theory, the New Physics of Information by Tom Siegfried:
You simply cannot say, or even calculate, where an electron is in an atom or where it will be. You can only give the odds of its being here or there. And it is not here or there until you look for it and make a measurement of its position. Only then do you get an answer, and all the other possibilities just disappear. This is a difficult point to grasp, but it needs to be clear. It’s not just a lack of knowing the electron’s “real” position. The electron does not have a real position until somebody (or something) measures it.
You can imagine my head spinning, standing in the bookstore, grocery list in purse, only minutes before my daughter was to get out of tumbling class. Is what Siegfried is saying actually true? It is counter-intuitive, if not wildly preposterous. I am Alice, being led to the rabbit hole; I must follow this white bunny!!! I feel compelled, but first I have to pick up my daughter, buy food, and get home to make my family dinner.
Daily living had to balance with seeking the secrets of life. My world was already built around the joys and obligations of being wife and homemaker, home-schooling mother, business owner and holistic health advocate. Performing these roles while in a state of persistent puzzlement became my new normal.
Alternating between ordinary necessities and manifesting expressions of my on-going visions produced a creative tension that has continued up to the development of the online book you are now reading.
Since childhood I have had an affinity for learning, which was reflected in my school work and for which I was rewarded by induction into the National Honor Society. Regardless, my harsh family circumstances included the absence of anyone to encourage me to go on to college; in fact, I remember being told quite the contrary, that girls did not need college because we all end up being secretaries anyway. This sad rationalization prevailed in the early 1970s, especially in my town, from which multiple manufacturing facilities drew their blue-collar plant-workers.
Compared to more worldly young people, I had lived under a rock — hiding from family turmoil, as it seemed the very sight of me made things worse. Overcoming traumas, disappointments and hindrances, I continuously sought ways to make sense of my world. Books were my solace; their authors were my friends.
Even as an adult, I turned to books as I tried to grow and learn and broaden my world. And so it came to be that a book would expand my horizon into the realms of science and philosophy.
That night while cooking dinner and keeping Siegfried’s quote on the back burner, I realized that I had jumped out of the frying pan and into the fire! My deep and persistent curiosity about tales of creation had flung open a door into an arena of mind-boggling discoveries of quantum physics, which delivered many new questions along with each answer it offered.
My chalkboard-prompted question, before finding the quote, was concerning how the nature of the Seen depended on, or was determined by, the Seer. Was even the actual existence of an Object merely a decision by the Subject?
Subject/Chooser – Action/Choosing – Object/Chosen
Using the image below, you can catch yourself in the act of choosing whether to see the face or the tree-branches.
We choose (often subconsciously) which objects in our spatial environment earn our attention, and therefore, any Object chosen/Seen would require us to choose/See it — to the exclusion of other options concurrently available.
What Siegfried was saying, though, was a drastically different deal.
If electrons or photons are singled out as particles in space-time only when observed, then prior to observation they remain mingled-in as wave-function probabilities, undifferentiated by particular characteristics.
Strange as it seems, Siegfried reported that a particular Object assumes its specific physical attributes when entangled or interfered with, and this includes simply being observed or measured. (Here is a linked article referencing this topic that you may find interesting.)
After reading Siegfried’s outlandish premise from modern physics, my question morphed into how an Object/Seen could be caused by the Subject/Seer.
The Quadrants showed God, the Subject, at the cause of Creating light, and the light, itself, an Object at the effect of being Seen.
Ironically, the naive use of syntactic topology, Subject – Verb – Object (SVO), brought together ancient scripture and modern science as a logical basis for the yet-to-be-named Quadernity Model. Subjects and Objects soon began to skitter back and forth across the framework of quadrants.
Within this humble understanding of the English language and simple geometric structure for comparing Creation stories, their balance, beauty, strength and secrets shone through brightly from sources old and new. Without SVO and the stacked squares, profound truth might otherwise have remained lost to me.
Up to that point, I had thrown the baby out with the bathwater, in terms of religion, thinking spiritual seeking in my circumstances was primarily for the healing of a deeply wounded psyche. Now, my mind eagerly took over the beginning of each day with a meditation on the whole of Creation, eventually incorporating teachings from a wide scope of sciences and spiritual paths.
In time, I would discover the following quote from the Upanishads, an ancient Indian text written thousands of years ago.
Whether we know it or not, all things take on their existence from that which perceives them.
Ancient scriptures foretold what modern science is only recently discovering. Correlating science and spirituality is one of the unexpected gifts of working with Quadernity.
Creation’s Quadrants of Potentiality
The lower level quadrants lined up the nomenclature of grammar, religion and Seigfried, yet the upper quadrants remain unnamed.
The next label soon came. The word Creative appeared in the URQ with a dark-dashed arrow pointing diagonally downward to the Creator in the LLQ. This arrow was mysteriously different, though. I wondered what that meant.
Another mystery was the ULQ; its label was elusive.
Before the act of Creating, the Creative has the potential to be a Creator. In parallel, before Creating, there must also be something with the potential to be the Created! What word describes this pre-Created something?
What label goes in the remaining quadrant?
As days of auditioning words went on, ‘un-created’ was consciously eliminated; it did not serve, for it sounds like something that has been created and then disassembled. Likewise, ‘non-created’ was rejected. A non-created thing may never be created.
There must something that can be Created! Even though it is not yet something, it surely cannot be nothing.
As the Rig Veda says:
There was neither non-existence nor existence then.
What is the name of the pregnant, probabilistic state in the ULQ? One morning’s dream finally delivered the answer: the fourth quadrant is labeled ‘Creatable’!
Each quadrant now has an identity, a name that defines its role in relation to each of the other quadrants. Ahhh, it just feels right! Let’s take a deep satisfying breath, and slowly exhale.
The upper two quadrants, the Creative and Creatable, are assumed to be the potential states of the lower quadrants, the Creator and the Created. This is logical: if one were not first Creative, he/she could not do the Creating that would make him/her a Creator; and if there was nothing potentially Creatable, there could be nothing actually Created. The labels, Creator and Created, are applicable only after Creating is complete.
Here is an example: See yourself preparing to fold origami paper into a tiny bird. Your ability to make paper birds is a Creative talent. The paper that you hold in your hands is like the raw Creatable substance, in that it can be folded into countless shapes. When you are finished folding/Creating, and not before, you may declare yourself the Creator of the little paper bird you have Created.
Many spiritual paths use the term ‘Creation’ to mean all that has ever been Created. In this model, we understand the Created is merely one of the four functional aspects in the Quadrants of Creation.
From here on we will make this important distinction: Quadernity uses the term Creation as the full process, not the product.
Parting Words of Assurance
My long-held belief had been that for an object to be seen it must be physically real already. It is quite difficult to entertain a completely opposite or conflicting idea. So, when Siegfried explained that an Object/Seen assumes limited physical attributes only when someone/something observes/measures/sees it, this radically different perspective is enough to bring on an attack of cognitive dissonance. Been there — done that.
Allow me to talk us off the ledge: Auuuummmm…deeeeeep breaths…this too shall pass…waterfalls, waves, wind chimes…ah, that’s better…I’m okay, you’re okay!