The Connection between Mind and Body
in Theistic Physics
The possibility of a causal connection between mind and body is most controversial
from the scientific point of view, especially as in theistic science we
claim that minds and bodies are different kinds of substances. Even given
the proposal that minds and bodies are successive discrete degrees, it
is still a mystery to know where and how the mind and body
inter-relate, and to know how possible connections are compatible (if at
all) with the 'causal completeness of the physical world' that many scientists
strongly uphold, and with e.g. the principle of conservation of energy.
'Formative Degree' in nature?
In the physics section on formative processes,
we discussed the possibility of a third degree in nature that generates
the Lagrangian for virtual field processes, and also perhaps produces the
dynamical 'curved space' in which these operate (the curvature being gravitational
effect). This degree would be a kind of 'third quantisation' of quantum
Now, the theory of discrete degrees
in theistic science suggests a new and specific role for this third level
of processes. According to the general
theory of natural processes, this third degree is labelled as 3.1 -
the 'effects of ends' degree - that is responsible for the reception of
loves (and all mental causes) in nature. In theistic science we know that
there must be some degree with this role, and, moreover, because of correspondences
with other parallel degrees (e.g 2.1), this is not idle speculation but
the beginning of a deduction from theistic principles of the general properties
of this formative degree.
What we can deduce about the formative degree and mind-nature connections
From correspondences with other degrees, we make begin to make deductions
along the following lines:
- The formative degree describes a level of 'pre-geometric' processes whose
evolution produces the dynamical properties of curved spacetime.
- This degree (3.1) has three successive steps:
- a operational principle (3.11)
- dynamical processes (3.12)
- definite effects (3.13) which produce spacetime and the field-theoretic
- The operational principle (3.11) is analogous to 2.11 (receptions in the
internal rational), and therefore is strongly dependent on spiritual and
mental causes. That is, the laws that formative processes follow should
be dependent on spiritual influx from the exterior mind (principally the
outmost part of this: the 2.33 degree where sensorimotor effects are
manifest). The evolution laws do not follow fixed mathematical principles.
- The dynamical processes are the evolution of substances which could be
called 'the purest things in nature', and are partially 'outside' spacetime.
They may be called 'pre-geometric', in the sense of generating
- The events in 3.13 must satisfy the following properties deduced from
- they must give semi-permanent structures fulfil the role of what
Swedenborg calls the 'limbus': that part of nature that is permanent
retained to eternity and is used to fix and terminate spiritual processes
after the normal termination structure is no longer functional (after death
of the body).
- they must generate geometry dynamically. This may be done globally for
the entire physical universe, or may be done to generate local segments as
are manifest in the spiritual world.
- the generated geometric spaces have a metric that is, in general,
- the metric of the segments in the spiritual world is determine by loves
and their similarities.
- The events in 3.13 must satisfy the following properties in order to match
up with today's physics:
- they must generate the space time dynamically,
- they may well be the global 'spontaneous symmetry breaking' events that
must have uniform effects across the whole universe, for example
- events to select a particular quantum branch of the early universe
after the big bang,
- events to select a particular global non-zero field value for
generating eg Goldstone bosons,
- the metric of the physical world is determined by mass-energy densities
and their similarities.
We can see a general correspondence between the effects of love and of
gravity on the local spacetime metrics ('like attracts like' in both cases), but
not yet the details of their universal principles which would allow us to deduce
relevant dynamical features.
What will the influx theory look like?
We anticipate from Swedenborg's insights
and empirical observations that
a developed theory of influx (building on the above starting points) will
have the following features:
There is preliminary discussion of some of these issues in my earlier
- the influx of mental effects will not be into a specific place in the world
or in the living body, but will be into wherever particular functions are
being performed (see discussion of correspondences).
- most influx will be to sustain 'normal' biological, physiological and psychological
functions, this having the effect, because these functions follow rather
close sequences, of requiring the mental degrees giving the influx to also
follow similar close sequences. This is desired, because in this way the
spiritual substances are kept in relatively permanent forms.
- influx following even more close sequences is responsible for sensory
processes, where mental content is made to follow physical processes
in the sensory cortices rather strictly.
- only specific kinds of influx will change physical processes to
otherwise than we will normally expect. These are principally the influx
from the outmost part of the exterior mind, from the 2.33 degree where
effects are manifest. That is why the 2.33 level is called a 'motor'
- (we see from this that the 2.33 'sensorimotor' degree already has multiple
functions: sensations, ultimate decisions, and motor transmissions, which
remain to be determined from its further substructures and subdegrees 2.331
Further speculative comments concerning possible details, following
the ideas above, are given on another
14 July 2001