Now there’s a thought for a Saturday morning.
Thanks to Nigel Willson (@nigewillson) for flagging this piece about the theory of panpsychism…
For centuries, modern science has been shrinking the gap between humans and the rest of the universe, from Isaac Newton showing that one set of laws applies equally to falling apples and orbiting moons to Carl Sagan intoning that “we are made of star stuff” — that the atoms of our bodies were literally forged in the nuclear furnaces of other stars.
Even in that context, Gregory Matloff’s ideas are shocking. The veteran physicist at New York City College of Technology recently published a paper arguing that humans may be like the rest of the universe in substance and in spirit. A “proto-consciousness field” could extend through all of space, he argues. Stars may be thinking entities that deliberately control their paths. Put more bluntly, the entire cosmos may be self-aware.
It reminds me of Peter Wohllben and his theory that trees are sentient, that they communicate with and even heal one another, albeit at an ent-like pace. There’s an interview with Wohlleben, here. And, of course, his best-selling book on the matter is The Hidden Life of Trees, which I’ve been tempted to read for a while now.
Much to ponder over a grey weekend.