Matter, what mainstream culture accepts as the substance of reality, is an unprovable myth with unseen implications and consequences.
The idea that an inert substance called matter exists outside of experience lays the groundwork for unnecessary suffering and confusion that can otherwise be avoided. In this article, it is my objective to dispel the myth of matter and propose an alternative- that reality is fundamentally mental in nature.
As you read, stay open to the possibility that mainstream culture (everyone you know, everyone you’ve learned from) is deeply mistaken in their theory of reality. Read with the intent to further open your mind to the truth of your experience, and rid yourself of unconsciously adopted notions from the 17th century.
This post proceeds as following:
- Matter isn’t real
- Why we believe in it
- The consequences of believing in matter
- An alternative
- The how and why of ontology
Matter isn’t real
Matter has never, and will never be experienced. What we call matter exists only as an IDEA about the fundamental nature of reality that is supposed to be the fundamental substance of reality, have no experiential nature or consciousness, and exist outside of experience.
Despite its apparent omnipresence and importance to reality, matter itself cannot be proven to exist because every observation occurs in experience only. Observations made within experience do not, and can not (ever), prove that something exists outside of it. Every scientific measure of matter occur within perception. Everything we know about reality occurs in experience.
Matter cannot be experientially or experimentally verified, So it’s existence can only be postulated or assumed, never proven.
I believe the next intellectual revolution will be based on the non-existence of matter, and realities fundamentally mental nature. My guess is that mainstream culture will know the world to be an appearance in consciousness by 2050. Exciting.
Why we believe in the matter model
Where did the idea of matter come from? Why do we collectively believe in it?
Matter is a way to explain the consistency of experience from one moment to the next.
Objects do not appear or disappear instantaneously (like they sometimes do in dreams). Objects also remain unchanged by your experience or non-experience of them (when you look away and look back the same object is there. And when your perception of an object is distorted it is not).
If reality is not fundamentally matter, then it is fundamentally mind. The distinction ‘matter’ literally refers to ‘non-mind stuff’, and if reality is not non-mind stuff, then it is mind-stuff.
We tend to assume that ‘mind’ appears exclusively the way it does in our individual minds, which is inherently unstable and ever-changing (thoughts). Matter is supposed to be the stuff that is not like that. We assume that mind cannot appear as consistent and ‘solid’ as the world seems to be, and so we suppose there must be something outside of mind that is ‘real’ and solid (matter).
“Of course there’s a world ‘out there’. If there wasn’t, the world would be all weird and change like mind-stuff.”The Materialist
Matter is also a way to explain the consistency between people. Each of us reports a very similar world. To explain this consistency we propose a world in which both peoples experiences take place. We assume that the world is made of something independent of our experiences.
“Of course ‘stuff’ exists outside of my experience, that’s why me and Cletus voted for Trump! We were both looking at the same national hero!”The Materialist
The intellectual elite in our world blindly adopt the notion of matter without seriously questioning its validity. Our culture’s philosophers and scientists assume and believe in matter, and they preach it to normal people who believe in them.
Matter is a cultural artifact from the European ‘enlightenment’ period that still prevails because of its success as an explanatory model. Its prevalence in human thought is the result of lazy thinking and a deep need for answers that causes us to accept whatever is presented.
“The nerd guy said there’s stuff outside my experience called matter and that it makes my brain which makes my experience- pass the beer jug, Cletus.’’The Materialist
Consequences of Believing in Matter
Holding the idea of a material reality has certain implications…
- Separation between objects, spaces, and times
- Consciousness depends on, and is a product of the physical body. The death of the body is the end of consciousness.
- Our experience is not of reality itself, but a brain produced image of that ‘real world.’
- Matter is important. *Think of the more common term ‘materialism’ that refers to peoples fascination with obtaining material things.
- An idea about reality is more true than a direct experience of it
- Matter gives rise to the ‘hard problem of consciousness’, which refers to our apparent inability to explain, logically and experimentally, how a dead inert substance (matter) gives rise to THIS experience. We have no idea how this happens, and we aren’t getting any closer
These implications show up in our experiences as various consequences…
- A sense of separation between self, other, and world.
- A sense of self as a solid meat body follows from the matter idea.
- People are seen as entirely independent from your self, and are treated as such. This sense of separation from others may be the root cause of divisions amongst people.
- A fear of the body’s death comes when we believe that body implies your death
- An over-reliance on material stuff for fulfillment. This shows up as greed, object glorification, and obsession with things’.
- A disconnect from your own experience, and the truths found therein.
Hold the possibility that all of that can be let go of simply through a paradigm shift from matter to mind based reality.
We’ll call it Mind.
Mind is what you’re experiencing now. Mind implies the fundamentally experiential nature of reality.
Mind is all we have. All of life occurs within Mind. All of science and philosophy occurs within Mind.
The idea of matter originated and continues to exist in our experience of Mind.
There is only Mind.
Instead of supposing that reality exists outside of experience, we can hold the idea that experience IS reality.
Making this leap is radical, but not unwarranted or absurd.
I suggest you consider the matter for yourself. It is your existence after all.
The how and why of ontology work
The mental experiential shift from a material universe to a mental universe occurs after diligent .ontology work.
Ontology work is an effort to become conscious of what is true about being.
Being is what ‘is’ fundamentally.
This work is accomplished through contemplation, research, and philosophy.
- Contemplation is the act of questioning what something is and intending to directly experience the truth. In this case, you would ask ‘what is reality?’ Intend to experience the nature of reality for yourself.
- Research consists of compiling and meta analyzing many sources of information in order to create the most accurate and valid understanding.
- Philosophy is the process of thought by which we organize and contextualize the findings of our research. Here we use logic, intuition, and concept to reach deeper and more powerful understandings.
The work is also supported by ‘spiritual’ practices and experiences such as meditation, psychedelics, and transcendent states that provide insight into the nature of being. These practices allow you to experience new thoughts, perceptions, and sensations that are conducive to ontology work.
The end result of ontology work is an experience of reality that is free from unnecessary conceptual overlays and is deeply informed by the truth.
Freedom from concepts allows freedom from suffering.
Alignment with truth allows joy and beauty to pervade experience. It increases the effectiveness of thought and action by allowing you to relate to what is occurring rather than a concept.
Do your own contemplation, research, and philosophizing!