The Game of Life
Sections of this chapter
The Game of Life
The Step Beyond Man
Security and Freedom
Decency and Morality
The Ethical State
Of Goals and Means
To be aware is to know, to understand, to perceive directly. Awareness implies the ability to predict and control. Our "total awareness" is measured by the extent to which we can predict and control our total environment — physical, biological and psychosocial.
To predict our total environment is to be able to imagine events — physical, biological, and psychosocial — correctly before we have directly perceived them. The ability to predict is fundamental to the structure of mind. An entity totally incapable of prediction would be incapable of seeing the patterns tying its perceptions together. It would perceive neither a past nor a future, but would exist only in the present in a state of continuous destruction.
"Control" refers to the directed causal formation of a predicted set of events. Control, in turn, is essential to prediction. An entity totally devoid of the ability to control would be incapable of prediction because it could not direct itself. It would be deprived of "feedback."
"Feedback" means perception of the consequences of our actions. In order to have feedback, there must be action, i.e., "prediction and control," particularly control of ourselves. Feedback is essential to test the validity of our predictions and the nature of our perceptions. No entity can be aware or survive without feedback.
"Awareness," therefore, subsumes the notions "intelligence," "knowledge," and "consciousness." To be intelligent is to be aware. To increase our knowledge is to increase our awareness. To expand our awareness is to expand our consciousness. "Awareness" is a concept that we can define only asymptotically, obtaining better and better descriptions as we become ever more totally aware, but never completely capturing the full meaning of the term. The concept of "awareness" will at first be indistinguishable from the more limited notion of "intelligence," and will tend to emphasize the more tractable and specific definition of "ability to predict and control the total environment." The reader must at first use his imagination to complete the gestalt that forms the total pattern of awareness.
Our total awareness reflects the total sum of our knowledge and consequently our ability to predict and control every aspect of our total environment. "Knowledge" is information that either enables us to predict and control or tells us what it is that we can neither predict nor control. Awareness can be narrow or it can be broad. Awareness is narrow when knowledge is limited primarily to a few aspects of the total environment. Awareness is broad when knowledge is divided approximately equally among many aspects of the total environment. A person with narrow awareness will be called a "specialist." A person with broad awareness will be called a "generalist." The total individual sum of knowledge of a specialist and a generalist may in some sense be equal, but their ability to predict and control the total environment will probably be quite different.
There does not seem to be any logical reason for believing that one type of knowledge is more important than another. It seems reasonable to assume that it is just as important to predict and control one aspect of the environment as another. Each quantum of knowledge is, therefore, equal in value to every other quantum of knowledge. What seems to make the differences in total awareness is not so much the total sum of the knowledge quanta as their arrangement.
The total environment has many dimensions. At this point in human evolution the total environment seems to be logically divisible into three primary dimensions — the physical, the biological and the psychosocial. For most of us, it is easy to think in three dimensions. The physical universe, as we know it, seems in fact to be logically divisible into four orthogonal dimensions (the three dimensions of space and the dimension of time). The total environment is, therefore, probably divisible into many more dimensions than three. It may in fact have infinitely many orthogonal dimensions.
As the circle is to the sphere, so is the sphere to the four-dimensional hypersphere. By analyzing circles we obtain some insights into the nature of spheres. By analyzing spheres we obtain some insights into the nature of hyperspheres. By analyzing the total environment in three dimensions we may obtain some insights into the true infinite hyperdimensional nature of total awareness.
Keeping in mind that total awareness probably has infinitely many orthogonal dimensions, we assume total awareness to be an entity in three-dimensional noospace, i.e., mind space. The units of measurement in noospace are the quanta of knowledge and information.
We assume that knowledge is quantized in noospace just as energy is quantized in physical space. A quantum of knowledge is the minimum amount of information that will enable a person to alter his state of total awareness in order that he may predict and control some aspect(s) of his total environment which previously had, to him, been unpredictable and uncontrollable. Knowledge is, therefore, transferred or acquired in discrete quanta. When we have acquired a critical mass of relevant information, we have knowledge where before we had none. Subjectively this may be understood as insight or direct perception of a gestalt in noospace. Of course, information itself is probably also quantized but that need not concern us in this discussion.
Broad awareness in noospace is represented by a body tending toward sphericity, i.e., a generalist who has increased his knowledge in all directions equally. Narrow awareness is represented in noospace by a body tending toward ellipsoidicity, i.e., a specialist who has increased his knowledge in a particular direction at the cost of knowledge in other directions. This situation is illustrated in the figure below.
Positive quantities along each axis represent information and knowledge about what can be predicted and controlled, i.e., positive knowledge. Negative quantities along each axis represent information and knowledge about what cannot yet be predicted and controlled, i.e., negative knowledge. Every time we learn how to predict and control new aspects of the environment we also learn of other aspects of the environment that we cannot yet predict and control. Our total awareness reflects both that which we know and that which we know that we know not. Therefore, knowledge is probably symmetric.
Positive feedback enables us to acquire positive knowledge. Negative feedback enables us to acquire negative knowledge. We learn just as much from negative feedback as from positive feedback.
A point in noospace that does not lie on any of the axes represents a composite of two or more orthogonal components of awareness. For example, knowledge of biophysics represents a combination of physical knowledge and biological knowledge. Knowledge of biophysical psychology represents a combination of physical, biological and psychosocial knowledge. Most persons are psychosocial specialists as in Fig. 1(a). They have considerable knowledge of how to get along with others and of how to predict and control some aspects of human behavior. However, very few persons have comparable knowledge of the physical and biological environment. Most artists, politicians and salesmen are examples of psychosocial specialists. However, only generalists seem to be truly creative in the psychosocial environment.
Almost all the points in noospace are composite points. No human being appears to be totally lacking in any of the components of knowledge. If he were, he would at best be a two-dimensional, unaware creature with a surface but no volume. All human beings appear to be ellipsoidal. Some tend more than others toward sphericity, i.e., broad awareness. However, perfect sphericity seems to be impossible, i.e., no one is ever a perfect generalist.
The surface area of the ellipsoid represents the totality of our information and knowledge — our knowledge always being less than our information. The volume of the ellipsoid represents our total awareness. The more the ellipsoid of our total awareness tends toward sphericity, the greater will be our total awareness for a given amount of information and knowledge. This is the case because a sphere has maximum volume for a given surface area. Therefore, the maximization of total awareness implies becoming broadly aware as opposed to being narrowly aware. Since all knowledge is probably equal, it is probably just as easy to become broadly aware as narrowly aware.
There is some evidence, which requires arguments beyond the scope of this book, that it is easier to become broadly aware than to become narrowly aware. The more the generalist reams, the easier it becomes to ream. The more the specialist reams, the harder it becomes for him to learn within his specialty. Intuitively this can be shown by considering the ellipsoid of total awareness as being contained within a membrane of liquid knowledge. The surface tension at any point on the membrane is inversely proportional to the radius of curvature. Specializing implies extending knowledge along the direction of maximum surface tension until the surface tension becomes insurmountable, i.e., it requires an ever increasing amount of information to produce a new quantum of knowledge. Most persons seem to have reached their limit in psychosocial specialization. Generalizing implies always extending knowledge along the direction of minimum surface tension in order to maintain a spherical shape. This means that a generalist will try to integrate simultaneously all of science, art, history, philosophy, and anything else that might be considered knowledge in order to form an ever-expanding, coherent model of the universe. He will never learn one thing to the future exclusion of everything else. His intelligence will determine the volume of his awareness — not the shape. The shape of the ellipsoid of awareness is a function of ethics, as will be shown later in this chapter.
Figure 2 above illustrates the notion that no one is ever a complete specialist or a generalist. A sphere is a special case of an ellipsoid. Therefore generalists and specialists exist on a continuum; each is an approximation to the other. The complete generalizing generalist is represented by an expanding sphere. The specializing specialist is represented by an elongating ellipsoid. The complete specialist is represented by a degenerate ellipsoid, i.e., a line. Specialization makes a person tend toward one-dimensionality and zero total awareness, even when the one-dimensional knowledge becomes infinite.
Awareness starts as a point, i.e., a sphere with zero diameter, at the intersection of all the orthogonal axes in noospace. The earlier a person specializes, the more one-dimensional he will tend to be. A totally ignorant person is a person with no knowledge. He is a degenerate generalist represented by a sphere of zero diameter. He, like the perfect specialist, has zero total awareness. The sphere and the ellipsoid, the point and the line represent the geometric boundaries of generalists and specialists, ignorance and knowledge, total awareness and the absence of awareness. Awareness, however, can be real or it can be imaginary.
"Imaginary" in this context refers to illusions and not to the creative component of intelligence. Illusions of knowledge are measured with "imaginary" numbers instead of "real" numbers.
Illusions of knowledge, i.e., the subjective belief that we have knowledge (positive or negative) when we have none, are represented by imaginary quantities along orthogonal imaginary axes that correspond to the real axes in noospace. Illusions of awareness result from imaginary knowledge. The totality of our real plus our imaginary knowledge is represented by our total complex awareness which, by extension of our current three-dimensional model of real awareness, exists in six-dimensional, complex noospace.
Imaginary awareness cancels out real awareness. The greater the imaginary components of our awareness, the less our total real awareness will be. When all the imaginary components are zero, then our total complex awareness is entirely real and is equal to the real volume of the ellipsoid in real noospace. When the imaginary components are not zero, then our total awareness is less than or equal to the volume of the ellipsoid in real noospace minus the volume of the ellipsoid in imaginary noospace, i.e., our real minus our imaginary awareness. Negative total awareness implies the inability to learn in many or all aspects of the total environment. Learning is the acquisition of real knowledge.
To expand our total awareness, therefore, means to expand only the real components of awareness in such a way that our total real awareness is growing spherically. From now on the word "awareness" will refer only to "real awareness" unless otherwise indicated. It will be shown that only by increasing total awareness can the quality of life be improved. Only awareness can give us joy because only awareness has meaning.
Only awareness has meaning, because only awareness is beyond doubt. Our personal awareness is the only part of the universe about which we can have no logical doubts. We can have doubts about the reality of our awareness, but not about the awareness itself, because we perceive it directly. All cause and effect relationships are in doubt, but not our perceptions. Only the causes of our perceptions and awareness are uncertain.
We test the reality of our awareness by attempting to predict and control our total environment. Imaginary awareness which does not enable us to predict and control is an illusion of awareness. It is possible to find as much subjective meaning in imaginary awareness as in real awareness. However, continued illusions of awareness deprive any organism of feedback and eventually lead to its destruction. Only real awareness is true awareness. Only true awareness which passes the test of prediction and control can give continued meaning to life because awareness may be the only reality in the universe.
Some existentialists have asserted that life is basically meaningless and absurd, but that each individual life can be made meaningful through purposeful action.
(The "cosmic force" subsumes all natural laws; it is the cause of all events. The Human Race (man, mankind, humanity, etc.) is considered as a dynamic entity that is continuously changing. It is not limited to Homo sapiens, but includes our pre-sapiens, sentient ancestors and whatever our species is still to become. "Sentient" refers to any entity aware of its own awareness.)
Which purposes should be pursued and why are questions which existentialism has not adequately answered.
There is an inexorable determinism which underlies all human activity. We can sometimes do as we will, but we can never will as we will. Each of us is born of parents and in a place he did not choose and is thereby totally a product of a heredity and an environment that he does not control. Our every thought, every emotion, and every action can be traced to causes beyond our control. Therefore, how can purpose give meaning to life when our purposes are not truly our own?
An answer to this question might be that "own-ness of purpose" is not a precondition to meaning. However, becoming aware implies eventually realizing that our actions are always determined by causes outside ourselves. It is difficult to conceive of a person finding the life of a puppet on a string meaningful simply because the life is full of action and purpose. It seems that for purpose to give meaning to life, there must be an element of free choice. But our choices are themselves determined by factors outside of ourselves.
There are, of course, many metaphysical arguments, pro and con, concerning determinism. It seems, however, that the basic dilemma of determinism cannot be resolved by logical analysis. Instead, each person who seeks a meaningful life must make a conscious choice whether or not to play the "Game of Life."
THE GAME OF LIFE
"The Game of Life" is an attempt to make the contradictory notions of determinism and free will compatible with each other by looking at our life, not in terms of cause and effect relationships, but in terms of a game which expands awareness whenever we play it. The concern is not with what causes us to seek awareness, but what attitudes and rules of behavior can enhance the expansion of awareness. Life is, therefore, simply a game in which we try to win ever-greater awareness. We do not make up the rules of the Game, but we must follow them if we are to win.
The "Game of Life" is a game in which we are the pieces as well as the players. As pieces, we are totally in the control of a cosmic force which completely determines our lives. As players we are part of the cosmic force and, in turn, partially control ourselves and others, i.e., we cause events even though something outside ourselves causes us to cause them. The stakes of the Game are an ever-expanding total awareness for each player and the human race.
The rules of the Game are as follows:
1. Each player must assume that he has free will and is totally responsible for his actions.
2. The sole purpose and goal of each player must be to expand total awareness as best he can.
3. Each player must start the expansion of total awareness with himself.
4. Each player must direct his every action toward winning the Game.
5. If a person plays the Game, he wins.
6. If a person refuses to play the Game, he loses.
As each player becomes ever more totally aware, he asymptotically becomes less a piece in the Game and more purely a player. Eventually all players are united as an ever-increasing part of the cosmic force. In other words, the more aware a player becomes, the more events he will cause until eventually all players begin to interact and asymptotically begin jointly to cause all events.
A determinist may say that he plays the Game of Life only because of the environmental and genetic forces that have acted upon him. An advocate of "free will" may say that the Game of Life is not really a game to him but represents the way he "chooses" to live. The important thing is that both players know the rules of the Game. They are aware of being aware and of the possibility of becoming more aware. They can ignore whatever it is that causes them to play the Game. They need only concern themselves with winning.
Assuming that the rules of the Game of Life are clear, it is still not clear why anyone should choose to play the Game. Indeed, as we look around, we see the overwhelming majority of our fellow men doing everything in their power to avoid the Game. Is it not, after all, obvious that the purpose of life is to be happy? Deferring a discussion of "happiness," we address ourselves to the following propositions: The Game of Life is the fundamental matrix on which the pattern of all evolution is woven. To refuse to play the Game is to avoid reality and to become extinct.
The entire pattern of evolution consists of chaotic energy becoming matter, elementary matter becoming atoms, atoms joining to form molecules, molecules becoming increasingly complex and organized until they become self-replicating, and life continues as unified matter increasingly predicting and controlling its environment. The life forms in turn become increasingly organized and complex; those species better able to predict and control their environment supplant the lesser species until man—the first known life form aware of its own awareness—appears and begins to supplant all other species. Man is, in effect, becoming a new phylum, fanning out into the ecosystem, filling the niches of one species after another. Man is, therefore, riding the crest of a wave of ever expanding awareness leading from chaos to matter to life to mind.
Evolution, although directional, seems to proceed by a process of random trial and error. The basic pattern has been to create ever more aware species from less-aware species. Because the more aware could better predict and control their environment, they would supplant the less aware wherever there was drastic environmental change or competition for resources. When there was no competition, the less-aware species such as plants, usually served to support the more-aware species, such as animals. Humanity began and has developed by the same process. Entire subspecies of men have been ruthlessly exterminated by their more aware cousins. Only man deliberately destroys his competitors. Such was probably the case between the European Neanderthal man and CroMagnon man. The pattern has been repeated in cultural development. When civilizations failed to expand their total awareness at a greater rate than rival cultures, they were overwhelmed.
Sometimes the conquered and the conquerors interacted synergistically so that the new resulting civilization was more totally aware than the previous two combined. Such was the case when the semi-barbaric but dynamic Hellenes conquered the more refined but stagnating Minoan civilization. The result was classical Greece. The influence of Greece persisted and spread throughout humanity. This is analogous to a benign mutation giving higher fitness to those to whom it is transmitted.
Sometimes the conquerors and the conquered interacted anergistically and the resulting civilization was less totally aware than either of the previous two. Such was the case in the Turkish conquest of the Arab civilization. In this case the new civilization, the Ottoman Empire, had no constructive influence on the human race and its effects were localized and soon dissipated when it in turn was destroyed by a superior civilization — Europe. The Ottoman Empire was analogous to a deleterious mutation that decreases the fitness of those to whom it is transmitted.
Evolution is a blind and clumsy force, not a carefully thought-out plan. Evolution drives matter toward mind by a random groping process that tests each clumsy attempt at greater awareness against other attempts. The more aware survive at the price of extinction for the less aware. Man is no longer significantly tested by other species; he tests himself. In so doing he has, until now, imitated the groping, clumsy quality of the evolutionary force; man has been unaware of what he has been doing to himself. Today man must deliberately and consciously test himself or he will bring about his own extinction by submitting blindly to the random and increasingly dangerous testing process of the evolutionary force. Evolution is a creative force that can also destroy. Similarly, light enables us to see but too much light can blind us. The electromagnetic analogy may be carried further.
Small amounts of hard electromagnetic radiation, such as X-rays and gamma-rays, will cause both benign and deleterious mutations. As radiation increases, the price for the few benign mutations is a much faster increasing number of deleterious mutations. Very large amounts of radiation completely destroy the organism without providing any benefit. The evolutionary process not only uses radiation, but is analogous to an ever-increasing source of radiation which is constantly increasing the rate of evolutionary change until it is on the brink of becoming lethal. If not brought under control, evolution can completely destroy the biosphere instead of improving it.
Man in the last one hundred years has evolved to the point where, as Julian Huxley put it, "He has become evolution conscious of itself." If he does not master that which caused him, he will be destroyed by it. Man, driven by the unreasoning need for security and personal powers has played the Game of Life as blindly as evolution has created him. He is now at the point where he must deliberately play the Game or be destroyed by his need for security and personal power.
The need for security and the need for personal power are evolutionary mechanisms that drive man toward greater awareness. Security and personal power are means to an end, not ends in themselves. Until very recent times, it was not possible for the vast majority of mankind to be secure or have personal power unless they were increasing their awareness. Natural selection and competition forced men to face reality and to play the Game of Life. The greatest source of insecurity is an unpredictable and uncontrollable environment. In the past, if men did not increase their awareness, they were quickly destroyed by negative feedback, i.e., the testing of other species, other men, and natural forces in general.
Man, by fuming security and personal power into ultimate goals, is bringing about his own extinction by avoiding reality. Reality includes what we can neither predict nor control. An illusion of reality is an illusion of awareness. Man has an innate need to be aware. Increasingly men are finding security by avoiding reality, i.e., by acquiring imaginary awareness. They do this by deliberately destroying their negative feedback. They delude themselves into believing that they are aware when they are not because negative feedback makes most persons insecure. Alley then deliberately sink into matter through hedonism (the pursuit of pleasure in the absence of awareness). Man is no longer forced to play the Game of Life. He must now play it deliberately. By insulating himself from minor testing (i.e., feedback and readjustment) through bureaucracy, man is causing the evolutionary force to build up a dangerous overload of testing potential within himself.
Man's personal power has evolved to the point where he can either 1) completely destroy all his competitors and, in the process, himself; or 2) bring about the mind-numbing security of life and pleasure in the absence of awareness. The pattern of evolution is to become aware of itself before destroying itself by destroying man. Evolution has always worked by trial and error. If man should prove himself an error by deliberately declining to play the Game, then evolution will erase him and he will not rise to the next stage of evolution.
THE STEP BEYOND MAN
The next step in human evolution will involve the transition from mind as an effect of life, to mind as an effect of itself, i.e., pure thought. Mind, as we know it, is that effect of life which causes awareness in general and awareness of self in particular. Life is that effect of matter which causes the continuous expansion of awareness. Matter is that effect of energy which brings definite form and structure out of chaos. All are an effect of the evolutionary force.
Until now mind has evolved as a consequence of the random evolution of life. Life evolved as a consequence of the expansion of awareness. Mind was able to evolve parallel to matter and life. For man, this is no longer the case because man now evolves psychosocially — not by biological change. Man must now take evolution into his own hands or he will be destroyed by entropy.
Entropy is the counter-force to evolution. Entropy drives mind toward matter and matter toward chaos. Entropy manifests itself in mind by a decrease in awareness. The maximum form of entropy for life is death. The ultimate form of entropy is chaos. Imaginary awareness is the direct manifestation of entropy.
Mind succumbs to the entropic force by declining the challenge of the Game of Life. Life succumbs to entropy by specialization, i.e., by acquiring an ever more fixed and specific form until it is indistinguishable from matter. Matter succumbs to entropy by becoming randomly dispersed until it no longer has a specific form and it becomes chaotic energy.
The evolutionary force driving man toward ever-greater mind causes him to seek ever-greater awareness. The entropic force drives him toward matter and causes him to seek ever-greater peace and tranquillity. Tension is produced by an unpredictable and uncontrollable environment. Man, in an effort to adjust to both the entropic and the evolutionary forces, relieves his tension by deluding himself into believing he is aware when he is not. He deliberately avoids the tension of the evolutionary force by destroying his feedback. Without feedback the Game of Life cannot be won.
Both evolution and entropy are natural manifestations of the cosmic force. It is just as "natural" to sink into matter as to rise to greater mind. It is only possible to rise to greater mind, pure thought, by playing the Game of Life in the presence of total feedback. Man can continue to have feedback only if he plays the Game deliberately.
Man is the precursor of pure thought. He is on the verge of creating it without knowing it. However, pure thought is the only stage of evolution, thus far, which must be reached deliberately through a conscious desire on the part of man. It will not occur in final form by chance. Just as the random union of increasingly complex matter gave rise to life, so will the deliberate union of increasingly-aware life, man, give rise to pure thought.
When life or matter reaches such a high level of complexity that it can no longer increase in awareness by continuing in its present form, then the individual entities, under the influence of the evolutionary force, unite to become a collective entity far more complex than any of the former individuals. This occurred when molecules united to become cells and once again when cells united to become multicellular beings — metazoa. Man represents the ultimate complexity of metazoan life. He apparently can only achieve significantly higher complexity by uniting in a new society.
It will be shown that the union of men in a new society must be free and voluntary. Men can only become totally free by becoming totally aware. Only by having all men strive to become totally aware will it be possible to create a new society which will lead mankind toward pure thought.
The society will be composed of persons, each of whom is individually aware, and through his individual awareness enhances the total collective awareness of a united humanity, which in turn amplifies the total awareness of each individual. The new society will exist for the sole purpose of expanding total awareness. The society will eventually have the same relationship to a man as the man has to a cell and that the cell in turn has to a molecule.
The pattern that will be developed in the later chapters will show that in all probability the society will start on Earth as the culmination of science and technology but it will not be limited to Earth. It will expand toward infinity in an infinitely-expanding universe always growing, perhaps meeting and melding with other societies, perhaps being tested by them, but always becoming more and more totally aware as it transcends time, space and matter. A new society will begin when a critical mass of humanity deliberately begins to play the Game of Life. It will never end. Only in this way will man find the immortality he has always sought. Only in this way can man evolve forever toward total awareness.
The two most popular cosmological models of the Universe are 1) a finite universe (Big Bang) model; and 2) an infinite universe (Steady State) model. The preponderance of scientific evidence tends to support the "Big Bang" theory. However, a finite universe is metaphysically unacceptable. Cosmological and astronomical models have often been drastically revised. This is certain to be the case with both the "Big Bang" and "Steady State" models. A model that is consistent with the evidence supporting the "Big Bang" theory, but implies an infinite universe, will almost certainly be discovered. (See the work of G. de Vaucouleurs.)
For man to choose the continuous expansion of total awareness as his sole purpose for living is merely to choose as a goal that which has been and continues to be the sole cause for his existence. In so doing, he is playing the Game of Life and creating a new society. These still vague notions will be more fully developed in the following chapters under the general concept of the "Moral Society."
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin was the first person to discuss the concept of "the Moral Society" under the more limited notion of "the Noosphere." He expressed the concept beautifully and in great detail." His overall perception of evolution stands as an exquisite monument to the human intellect. It is analogous to Mendeleev bringing order out of chaos in the creation of the Periodic Table of the elements. Teilhard makes it clear that the expansion of awareness is not only man's necessary purpose, but is his whole meaning. Teilhard's great work is marred only by his attempt to make his beautifully clear perception of evolution compatible with traditional thought in general, and Christianity in particular. In so doing, he dismissed the danger that entropy would destroy the human race. Teilhard saw the process of ever-expanding awareness as being deterministic and irreversible. He took a parochial view of the Noosphere and disregarded the need to play the Game of Life deliberately. He discounted the danger of nuclear annihiliation and the more insidious threat of cultural and genetic decay for the entire human race.
Assuming for the time being that Teilhard de Chardin's work, in spite of its flaws, demonstrates the desirability, indeed the necessity, of having the "expansion of total awareness" as the sole goal for the human race, the question of happiness still remains.
"Happiness" is the subjective mental state of feeling that our desires are being satisfied. Desires that have been fulfilled do not make us happy. Only desires that are being fulfilled make us happy. The degree to which we are happy is directly proportional to the rate at which we are satisfying our desires and the strength of these desires. Since simultaneous desires are often, in effect, contradictory (such as the simultaneous desires for both freedom and security) we rarely, if ever, simultaneously satisfy all our current desires. Therefore, most and probably all persons are always both happy and unhappy at the same time. When we say that someone is happy, we mean that the "happy effect" resulting from having his strongest desires satisfied outweighs the "unhappy effect" from having his weaker desires unsatisfied. An unhappy person is the converse of a happy person. A person devoid of desire would never be happy or unhappy.
From the preceding definition of "happiness" it is clear that a person who has the maximum expansion of total awareness as his strongest desire can be happy if he is fulfilling this desire. The converse, however, is not necessarily true. Indeed, a person who has the maximization of happiness as his strongest desire is in the peculiar position of creating problems that feed on their own solutions. As old desires are satisfied, new desires must be found to replace them. The desire for desire soon becomes the overwhelming need; one result is a drug-oriented, sensation-seeking, anti-intellectual culture such as is currently gestating among the children of the world mentored by such persons as Timothy Leary and Herbert Marcuse. A world oriented toward the maximization of happiness would result in an entropic nightmare, as can be shown by carrying the notion to its logical conclusion.
In most mammals and apparently also in humans the production of happiness by direct application of electric currents to the pleasure centers in the brain seems to cause the greatest possible happiness in the sense that the experimental subjects will forego their strongest and most basic desires, such as food and sex, in order to have their pleasure center stimulated." Therefore, if the greatest good is to make for the greatest happiness for the greatest number, an "optimal" world would be a completely-automated society in which every human being is connected at birth to a machine which maximizes the stimulation of his pleasure centers. The machines would keep persons alive as long as possible. They would cultivate the maximum number of new human beings from the collective pool of sperm and ova. The new human beings would be bred so as to select those who achieve maximum happiness from pleasure center stimulation. Such a world is the logical conclusion of a society oriented toward the maximization of happiness.
Such a world is technically feasible within the foreseeable future through the misapplication of physiological psychology, cybernetics, automation, electronics, genetics, etc. Indeed, some persons, such as Leary in one sense (psychedelic drugs) and Marcuse in another (socialistic sensualism), advocate that science and technology should be used primarily to make men happy as opposed to making them totally aware. They are, in effect, advocating the nightmarish world described above.
The so-called "psychedelic drugs" create illusions of awareness (happiness) while destroying the faculties which in fact make men aware. There is no evidence that any person can predict and control his total environment better as a consequence of taking psychedelic drugs. There is evidence that true awareness in fact decreases under the influence of these drugs.
"Socialistic sensualism" is a welfare state structured to facilitate the "free" pursuit of hedonism. It has no other purpose than to redistribute the resources of society in order that each person may maximize his happiness in his own way. This type of society leads inevitably to total decay. This is shown today by the hedonistic decline of the youth in the "socialistic democracies" such as Sweden and the United States. In these affluent countries, socialistic sensualism is almost a reality.
Awareness as a central goal does not preclude happiness, but merely relegates it to a probably trivial" status. In the normal course of events, happiness is a goal most easily reached indirectly by leading a purposeful life. Most men need something beyond themselves to give their life purpose and meaning. This partially explains the success of religion and to a lesser extent Communism. The desire to expand awareness and evolve forever is an infinite desire that we can always be in the process of fulfilling. It can always make us happy. The pursuit of total awareness makes us forever a part of something greater than ourselves. Only awareness seems to give true purpose and meaning to our lives, possibly because only awareness is real. The basis of human joy is awareness, not happiness. However, both happiness and awareness are dependent on security and freedom.
SECURITY AND FREEDOM
The central goal of ever-expanding total awareness is also compatible with other "intuitively" desirable goals of humanity, such as personal freedom and security, since these are necessary conditions for expanding awareness as well as effects of the expansion of total awareness.
"Security" was defined as a state of mind in which a person has or can readily obtain all he thinks he needs and has no fear of losing what he has. By definition, the absence of security, insecurity, makes persons unhappy. Security is necessary for the expansion of awareness because of the well-known psychosocial law of hierarchical needs. A person who is in imminent danger of being killed, and knows it, is not likely to desire food. A person on the brink of starvation is not likely to desire sex in lieu of food. Similarly, if the basic requirements of security, such as food, shelter, and continued good health (mental and physical) are not met, an individual or a population cannot be motivated to increase their total awareness. Other, less well understood factors such as "esthetic gratification" and "love" may play similar roles as necessary conditions for enhancement of awareness. As such, they are part of the gestalt of "security."
True, lasting security comes only from becoming totally aware. The desire for security in the absence of knowledge is a perversion of the evolutionary force. It leads men to seek security through self-deception and the pursuit of personal power. The greatest source of insecurity is an unpredictable and uncontrollable environment. In order to achieve the illusion of security, some men pervert their need to be aware by 1) deluding themselves through ideology into believing that they are aware when they are not, 2) excluding through self-imposed blindness, i.e., specialization, as much of the total environment as possible from their perception; and 3) controlling, through personal power and bureaucratization, the lives of other men who threaten to expose their illusions through negative feedback.
Security, like happiness, is best achieved indirectly by leading a purposeful life. Only by confronting directly what we do not know — what we can neither predict nor control — and then doing something about it can we become aware and overcome the entropic delusions which drive us toward matter. True security comes only from deliberately playing the Game of Life. This is only possible when there is personal freedom.
"Personal freedom" may be defined in terms of a person being able to do and say as he pleases so long as he does not, in the process, interfere with the right of another person to do and say as he pleases. When a conflict occurs, a compromise is reached which allows all concerned parties the maximum amount of self-expression; furthermore, no one has the right to demand any part of another person's life, except by previous mutual agreement (e.g., law).
This notion of freedom is essential to the maximization of awareness because awareness can only be increased when there is feedback in the sense of questioning and testing all propositions and the opportunity to formulate and express new ones. Indeed, this notion of feedback is the basis of science and technology. Science and technology, in tom, are the principal and perhaps the only direct means by which awareness can be significantly enhanced. Art and other psychosocial processes may be indirect means. In the end, all freedom, like security, stems from being aware and knowing how to become still more aware. A necessary but not sufficient condition for the expansion of awareness is scientific method. Science makes man free by giving him feedback and liberating him from illusion.
Science has probably existed as long as man, since in a simple sense it means only accepting as true that which works. Science has been recognized as such and formalized, however, only during the last three hundred years. The basic process of science is defined as follows:
- Observe, measure and describe the total environment.
- Take the perceptions, what is known and/or appears to be known, and make predictive models of cause and effect relationships in the total environment.
- Design and perform controlled experiments for testing the validity of each model.
- If the results of the experiments were by-and-large correctly predicted a priori by the model, then the model probably has some validity if the experiments were performed properly.
- If the results of the experiment are contrary to those predicted a priori by the model, then the model probably has no validity and one or more of the hypotheses and/or descriptions subsumed in the model are probably false or the experiments were performed improperly.
- A completely untested model, even when logically consistent, is assumed to be probably invalid until evidence to the contrary is presented.
- If the model can in no way ever be subjected to experimental validation, then the model is useless.
- It is the purpose of science to develop ever more general models which will predict increasingly broader aspects of the total environment—past, present, and future.
- Those models which repeatedly make the broadest range of accurate predictions are preferred over models which make fewer, occasional and/or less accurate predictions.
- No model is ever accepted as absolutely true and beyond doubt.
- Every scientific model can and should be improved by ever better description, modeling, and experimentation.
This description of scientific method can, of course, be extended indefinitely to include a discussion of "How do we describe and measure? What is a model? How are models constructed? How are controlled experiments designed, performed and evaluated?" and so on. Many books on this subject have been written. The purpose at this time is only to outline the basic intuitive notions of scientific method that are simple and direct and to which we will have occasion to refer later. Other persons may define "scientific method" in other ways. In this book "scientific method" refers only to the concept outlined above.
In short, "scientific method" is an open-minded inquiry into the nature of cause and effect relationships. It is based on the notion that we can never be certain about the validity of any relationship, but that we can always learn more about every subject. Any person who uses the scientific method is a scientist.
Although science is based on uncertainty, the uncertainty is within ourselves and not in nature. It is the unavoidable incompleteness of our information on all aspects of nature that makes the universe seem uncertain. "Probability" is the discipline that enables us to quantify our uncertainty and to deal precisely with incomplete information.
Technology is analogous to science except that the concern here is not with prediction but with control. In technology we build models called "machines" — usually, but not always, physical in nature — which enable us to control our environment. A machine is a manufactured device which turns one form of energy into another. Language, clothing, tools, and computers are all machines. Those machines that enable us to control the broadest aspect of our total environment with greatest precision and the least effort are the preferred ones. Science gives us the predictive principles which enable us to construct and operate machines that will behave as we expect. Technology, on the other hand, enables us to perform experiments (i.e., control the environment) in order to test scientific models. Science and technology form a symbiotic pair in which one is essential to the other. The term "science" will often be used to describe the pair.
Until about four hundred years ago science was considered only one of many ways to obtain knowledge. In Europe, religious dogma and in China, tradition, were considered more important than science. In both places the unscientific, but not illogical, authoritative teachings of men such as Aristotle and Confucius respectively were weighted more heavily than scientific evidence.
In Europe at this time, several men, in the face of persecution and antagonism from the established order, began to formalize and structure the scientific method. Roger Bacon in the thirteenth century attempted to formalize scientific method, but he was persecuted and imprisoned by the Catholic Church for "unorthodoxy." His was a premature, unsuccessful attempt to make men scientific and consequently more aware. Within one hundred years, groups of men who called themselves "scientists" and refused to accept the validity of "truths" not supported by scientific evidence began the scientific revolution. Francis Bacon was the prophet, Galileo was the evangelist and Newton the first high priest of science. Newton's theory of gravitation was the first significant, coherent, scientific model. The scientific revolution represented the deliberate, concerted effort of a very few men to predict and control their environment by the application of science and technology. These few men, representing at no time including today more than a minute fraction of the human population, have enabled man to increase his total awareness more in the last three hundred years than he had in the previous 300,000.
It is only natural that science began with those cause and effect relationships that are simplest and then worked toward the more complex. The progression went from the artificial and completely described world of geometry to the relatively simple world of physics. Then about one hundred years later, the more complex field of chemistry began to be explored on the basis of what was known about physics. Within the last few decades, the greatly increased knowledge of organic chemistry has begun to be applied to the incredibly more complex world of biology and we stand today on the brink of predicting and controlling life itself through understanding the structure of DNA. In the near future there will be synthesis of new life forms from non-living chemical compounds.
The only aspect of the total environment upon which the scientific revolution has not yet made a direct significant impact is the psychosocial. The psychosocial environment is at least as complex in relation to the biological environment as the biological environment is to the physical. The evolution of science has paralleled the evolution of mankind going from matter, to life, and finally to mind.
As science led to the mastery of one aspect of the environment after another, there were great social upheavals, each one greater than the last. For all the trauma caused by the model of the heliocentric universe and the physics that it implied, it was nothing compared to the trauma caused and still being caused by the first coherent model of biology — Darwin's Theory of Evolution.
As recently as ten years ago, Darwinism was heresy in Communist Russia. It still makes ideologues of the Left uneasy. As recently as today, the ideologues of the Right in California proposed and passed a law requiring the teaching in public schools of Genesis and the equally unscientific Aristotelean speculation of spontaneous generation. These myths must be given equal time with the validated (but still challengeable) theory of evolution by natural selection. When science begins to make significant inroads into the phenomenon of the mind and of social organization, we should expect an even greater trauma than was caused by Darwinism.
The alleged psychosocial sciences, usually called "social sciences" or "behavioral sciences," are today almost entirely devoid of science. They are at best descriptive, analogous to pre-Newtonian physics and preDarwinian biology. At worst, the psychosocial sciences are repositories of blatant ideology and are analogous to medieval theology.
An ideological belief is a belief in a cause and effect relationship not based on scientific evidence. An ideology is an organized set of interdependent ideological beliefs. Ideology is synonymous with dogma. Persons with an ideological persuasion will usually not entertain the possibility that their ideology may be wrong. Religions are clearly ideologies. Communism and Marxism, which have scientific pretensions, are ideologies. Modern educational theory as taught in most American colleges is an ideology. The same can be said in decreasing order for most, not all, of political "science," sociology, psychology, and economics. The full implication of ideology in the so-called "social sciences" will be discussed in Chapter 4 together with the reasons why science has had so little impact on understanding the psychosocial environment.
The point to be made at this time is that in all of human history only science and technology have been proven directly effective in expanding human awareness. Their effectiveness has been proven repeatedly by our ability to predict and control our physical environment. This is a process which began millions of years ago with our tool-making ancestors. The scientific method was extended to the biological environment by means of the agricultural revolution of about twelve thousand years ago. The same pattern repeated itself in the scientific revolution of three hundred years ago. Rigorous science was first applied to the physical environment; today it is being applied to the biological environment. It will not be until the scientific method has encompassed all aspects of man's environment that man's total awareness can truly begin to expand.
Physics and mathematics developed together. Systematic chemistry grew out of an understanding of physics and mathematics. Biology is now becoming a full science on a foundation of chemistry, physics, and mathematics. The so-called "social sciences" will not be true sciences until the social "scientists," who are mostly scientific illiterates, have mastered biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics. The psychosocial environment is the last frontier of the human intellect. Man is mastering all of nature except himself. In mastering himself, he will for the first time begin to be totally aware. This is "progress" — an ever-increasing ability to predict and control the total environment. By becoming increasingly aware, man will become increasingly ethical. The concept of ethics is inextricably interwoven with the concept of "games." We must first understand the nature of games if we are to understand our ethical nature.
A game is a set of behavioral rules about how to win or lose a specified stake. The latter may be entirely symbolic. A game has no purpose beyond itself. To play a game is to follow the rules of the game. All men play games, but not all men play the Game of Life.
In every game that man plays he has an opponent, and sometimes he also has allies. Our opponent in the Game of Life is not a person but a force — entropy; our ally is the evolutionary force. In all games, our opponent is either a person or some other manifestation of the cosmic force. This applies to specific games such as chess, poker, golf, etc., or to general games such as the Game of Life.
In the Game of Life a player has an infinite number of states in which he can exist. These are his states of total awareness. They range from negative awareness to the infinite total awareness, which no man ever reaches. A player also has an infinite number of actions that he can take. Each action will either increase, decrease, or not affect his state of total awareness.
Associated with each action is a cost in terms of the energy expended to perform the action. "No action" is also a type of action and it also costs energy in terms of a wasted portion of a person's life. Each player subjectively associates, usually unconsciously, with each pair of awareness state and action, a probable set of payoffs. Each payoff is seen as having a given probability of occurring given that we are in a given awareness state and take a specified action. The net benefit is a function of 1) the cost of the action, 2) the current state of total awareness, and 3) the probability distribution of resulting levels of total awareness. The greater the net increase in total awareness, the greater is the benefit to the player.
A player of the Game of Life attempts to maximize his expected payoff in terms of total awareness before he loses all his energy and reaches maximum entropy, i.e., dies. Only the awareness we engender in others survives our lives. A player is never certain of the outcome of any action in the Game of Life. If he is trying to win, he will, at each point, take the action with the highest subjective probability of maximizing total awareness. There is always a risk that awareness will decrease after any particular action. Taking no action guarantees that entropy will increase and that awareness will not increase. Inaction is a poor strategy because it is always trivial.
A strategy is a plan for winning a game. A good strategy in the Game of Life implies that for each awareness state we know how to choose an action that will further increase total awareness. In every game that man plays, he has a strategy. Sometimes the strategies are poor and he loses. Sometimes the strategies are good and he wins. The essential thing in any game is to have a strategy that enables us to learn from our mistakes as well as from our successes. When this is the case, we cannot help but improve our strategies every time we play the Game. Self-improving strategies are only possible when there is feedback. Without feedback, any strategy, no matter how perfect it may appear in the beginning will lose in any game that has infinite states, infinite actions, and infinite uncertain outcomes. In the Game of Life even the probabilities themselves are uncertain. Of all the games that man plays, the Game of Life is the one with the greatest uncertainty. No person ever becomes a perfect player of the Game; every player of the Game of Life will make mistakes.
The stakes in the Game of Life are infinite awareness, therefore, man has an infinite expected gain if he plays the Game. In spite of the risks and uncertainties involved, the Game of Life gives mankind the best odds and the greatest benefits.
Games are not trivial. A game either increases or it decreases total awareness. A game which increases awareness at one point may decrease it at another. Only a game whose outcome is uncertain can increase awareness. Games whose outcomes are predetermined in the mind of the player can only increase happiness, never awareness. Therefore, as a person becomes increasingly proficient in playing a finite game, he eventually acquires the ability to precisely predict and control every move and outcome in the game. He is then transformed from a person who is increasing his awareness to a person increasing only his happiness.
The Game of Life is an infinite Game that no entity can ever master. In the Game of Life, the uncertainty of the outcome remains no matter how proficient we become. The Game of Life enables us to evolve forever, but we can never be certain of the outcome.
Only entities who value awareness above happiness will accept the challenge of the Game of Life. All other entities will seek to play games that serve solely to make them happy. All men must play games — either consciously or unconsciously. Games are as much a part of man’s nature as his need for self-preservation. Today each man must consciously decide whether he will play the Game of Life or the Game of Pleasure.
The Game of Pleasure subsumes all games that serve solely to increase happiness. Every game that man plays is either a variation on the Game of Life or a variation on the Game of Pleasure. All of man's actions are part of a game that he has chosen to play. Science and freedom are strategies in the Game of Life. Ideology and coercion are strategies in the Game of Pleasure. Mathematics and art are sometimes variations on the Game of Life. Chess and religion are sometimes variations on the Game of Pleasure. Some games are variations on the Game of Life at one point in a person's life and become variations on the Game of Pleasure at another point. Sports, for example, communicate the nature of Darwinian competition to children. Adults who are obsessed with sports only increase their entropy.
As man increases his awareness, he is forced either to deliberately accept or deliberately decline the challenge of the Game of Life. There is no in-between strategy. Man either plays the Game of Pleasure or he accepts the challenge of the Game of Life. Those who accept the challenge are responsible for all of man's awareness. Those who decline the challenge are responsible for all of man's entropy. The greater the intelligence of a person who declines to play the Game of Life, the greater will be the entropy that he can engender because he has greater capacity to destroy all feedback. Any strategy that decreases entropy increases awareness. An optimal strategy in the Game of Life is one that maximizes the rate of increase in total awareness. An optimal strategy in the Game of Pleasure is one that maximizes happiness.
The Game of Life will cause happiness. The Game of Pleasure will never cause awareness. Man has always played the Game of Life unconsciously by pursuing happiness in the form of security and power. While there was competition from other men or animals, man could not be happy without becoming aware. This situation is about to end for all men. It has already ended for most men. Man can now find happiness without awareness. The moral question of our age is whether happiness in the absence of awareness is good.
The pursuit of happiness in the absence of awareness can destroy the human race. That this is the case is shown in Chapters 4 and 5. There is no logical reason for desiring the survival of mankind if man has no other purpose than to be happy. The only purpose man has is the purpose he gives himself by choosing to play either the Game of Life or the Game of Pleasure. It would appear that extinction is an optimal strategy in the Game of Pleasure since it maximizes entropy.
In most persons' lives the unhappy effect seems to outweigh the happy effect. The elimination of desire is the most effective way of eliminating unhappiness. Death is the most effective way of eliminating desire. Therefore, death minimizes unhappiness. Thus, persons who play the Game of Pleasure invariably use entropic strategies (e.g., ideology and/or drugs) in an attempt to maximize their happiness by minimizing their unhappiness. Death is a minimax strategy in the Game of Pleasure.
A minimax strategy is a strategy which assures a player that he will obtain the best of the worst, i.e., he will minimize his risk. The worst in the Game of Pleasure is unhappiness. The best of the worst is extinction. A minimax strategy is contrary to what most persons intuitively consider "optimal." A minimax strategy is indeed only optimal in the Game of Pleasure if a person puts a disproportionately low value on happiness and a disproportionately high cost on unhappiness. Persons who play the Game of Pleasure probably always use minimax strategies. A person playing the Game of Pleasure is made unhappy by his own awareness— he tries to destroy it by destroying his feedback until he reaches total entropy. He unconsciously longs for death.
A uniformly optimal strategy is one that simultaneously maximizes our gains while minimizing our risks. A uniformly optimal strategy guarantees all that the minimax strategy does plus maximizing our gains. In the Game of Pleasure we risk unhappiness and gain happiness. In the Game of Life we risk entropy and gain awareness. To play the Game of Life as best we can is to minimize our entropy and maximize our awareness simultaneously. To do the best we can in the Game of Life is to attempt to follow the rules of the Game. For any given person, simply attempting to follow the rules of the Game is a uniformly optimal strategy. The optimal playing of the Game of Life also maximizes a person's expected happiness because only the constant expansion of awareness can continue to make us happy. The risk of unhappiness is also minimized in the Game of Life because a person with a single desire fulfilled by the very act of pursuing the desire can never be unhappy. Only playing the Game of Life deliberately can create joy.
The rules of the Game of Life are a unique, uniformly optimal strategy for anyone who deliberately tries to follow them. This is the case irrespective of whether a person plays the Game of Pleasure or the Game of Life. Today, persons who are not deliberate in playing the Game of Life risk both unhappiness and entropy. They can at best have a minimax strategy in the Game of Pleasure. They inevitably become unhappy until they die.
Ethics are rules of optimal behavior. Since all men either play the Game of Pleasure or the Game of Life, behavior is optimal, i.e., ethical, if and only if it is a strategy in the Game of Life. A strategy in the Game of Life is any attempt to follow the rules of the Game. To be ethical is to be a player of the Game of Life. To be unethical is to be a player of the Game of Pleasure, i.e., to use a strategy that increases entropy. An action is good if and only if it increases total awareness. An action is evil if and only if it diminishes total awareness. An action that is neither good nor evil is trivial. A person is ethical if he plays the Game of Life most of the time. A person is unethical if he plays the Game of Pleasure most of the time.
A moral person is one who deliberately plays the Game of Life; he never knowingly plays the Game of Pleasure again. An immoral person is one who deliberately refuses to play the Game of Life; he never knowingly plays the Game of Life again. An amoral entity is a subhuman being who is unaware of the Game of Life. A "child" is an occasionally ethical person who is not a deliberate player of the Game of Life. Childhood represents the transition stage in man's individual development from an amoral to a moral entity. During childhood behavior alternates between good and evil. A child who is predominantly ethical is in the state of becoming moral. A child who is predominantly unethical is in a state of becoming immoral.
In his individual psychosocial development, each person recapitulates the moral development of humanity. Children play the Game of Life as blindly as our ancestors. Man has been a child for most of his existence. Because of his recent, great increase in awareness, he has lately been forced to become a moral being. Children always increase their awareness. Only immoral adults become totally unethical by destroying the awareness they acquired as children. They do this by acquiring imaginary awareness.
The major distinction between men is ethical behavior—not intelligence. What counts most is not how well persons play the Game of Life, but whether or not they play the Game at all. To be ethical does not mean that one does not make mistakes in the Game of Life. Not all strategies in the Game are equally effective. All men, like the evolutionary force that has created them will make mistakes as they grope their way toward total awareness. To be ethical means that a person will correct his mistakes when they are perceived and that he will not deliberately blind himself to them. The process of correcting mistakes in the Game of Life is the process of science. Scientific method is, therefore, the basis of all morality. It is unethical to be certain about any cause and effect relationship; it is always ethical to have doubts; inaction is unethical because it increases entropy. Man can only become totally ethical by integrating all knowledge into a single coherent, evolving model of the universe. This is only possible if he avoids entropy and maximizes his feedback by continuously testing and improving his models. To deliberately refuse to do so is immoral.
Man can only become totally ethical by becoming totally aware. To be totally ethical is to have won the Game of Life and to have zero entropy (i.e., infinite awareness). The more ethical man becomes, the more capable he is of predicting the consequences of his actions and of controlling their evil or good effects. The most ethical person is the most aware; he has the greatest capacity to create. All ethical persons are aware Not all aware persons are ethical. Ethics are a sufficient but not a necessary condition for awareness. Awareness is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for ethics.
Of all known life forms, only man is ethical because only man is aware of his own awareness. That this is the case is proved by the fact that only man, as a species, seems to increase his awareness and create. All other known life forms seem to be purely pieces in the Game of Life — probably only man is a player. The awareness of subhuman life can only increase by being mutated into new species. Therefore, ethical behavior is the highest form of awareness; it is the avatar of creativity. A person is unaware of the Game of Life if and only if he is unaware of his own awareness. Therefore, only very young children and subhuman entities are amoral. Adults are all either moral or immoral, but not all adults are equally ethical. Ethics are, therefore, relative; but morals are absolute. All immoral persons are unethical, but not all unethical entities are immoral. A person is moral only if he is aware of his own ethics. Therefore, morality is the highest form of ethical behavior; it is the ultimate manifestation of creation — mind as an effect of itself.
Immorality is the most evil form of behavior. Only a highly intelligent person can be immoral. All persons are either moral, immoral or children. An immoral society can stunt the development of children so that they never make the transition to moral beings. When this happens, the children become immoral adults.
Unethical persons become immoral by destroying their feedback and developing illusions of awareness until they have destroyed the ethics of childhood. The point at which a child becomes ethical is analogous to the point at which our pre-sapiens ancestors became aware of their own awareness. It is a transitory point with no clear demarcations. Only when it is passed, is it clear. Similarly, the point at which man becomes moral is the point at which he becomes aware of his own ethics. The rules of the Game of Life are the natural ethics which all children possess. They are the ethics of life.
Man becomes moral by asymptotically becoming less a piece in the Game of Life and more purely a player. Only an entity capable of deliberately playing the Game of Life can be moral; to decline the challenge of the Game of Life is to become evil. Man is never knowingly evil, he only becomes evil when he is immoral. Awareness catalyzes itself by making man ethical, moral, and a total player in the Game of Life. But this is only possible when there is feedback; without feedback all persons become unethical. The deliberate destruction of feedback is always immoral.
An ethical person, in assuming responsibility for his own actions, ascribes responsibility to all other persons for their actions. Deliberately to deny them this responsibility is to regard them as amoral. This is immoral; it can only increase their entropy by depriving them of feedback; it will stunt the development of children.
The entropic force is evil. The evolutionary force is good. The Game of Life is the pivotal point between good and evil. The prime strategy in the Game of Life is to make children ethical so they may become moral adults. Immoral adults can prevent this from occurring. Immoral adults make children unethical. It is possible for immoral adults to be decent.
DECENCY AND MORALITY
A decent person is an honorable person. A decent person is one who will not willingly enhance his welfare at the expense of someone else's welfare — he is concerned with the welfare of others. A decent person is ethical when he interprets welfare as being synonymous with awareness. A decent person is unethical when he interprets welfare as being synonymous with happiness. A decent person is immoral when he is deliberately willing to sacrifice anyone's awareness, including his own, for anyone's happiness, including his own. Persons who do this are always a source of entropy. Immoral decent adults are, in the long run, just as destructive to the human race as are indecent immoral adults.
The most unethical form of behavior is destruction of awareness. For this reason, the deliberate suppression of personal freedom is always immoral. The suppression of freedom destroys the feedback and subsequently the awareness of both the suppressor and the suppressed. The deliberate suppression of freedom is only done by indecent persons. All indecent adults are immoral, but not all immoral adults are indecent. A lack of decency is a sufficient condition for immorality, but it is not a necessary condition. Decency is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for morality.
Immoral decent persons decrease awareness by deliberately destroying negative feedback. Negative feedback is perception of our mistakes. Positive feedback is perception of our successes. Both positive and negative feedback are essential to ethical development. Without negative feedback, mistakes in the Game of Life cannot be corrected. Without positive feedback, successes cannot be consolidated and compounded.
Positive feedback always makes persons happy. Negative feedback makes persons happy if and only if they are moral. Moral adults learn as much from negative feedback as from positive feedback; therefore, they are made "happy" by both kinds of feedback.
Decent immoral persons are players of the Game of Pleasure; negative feedback makes them unhappy. Therefore, they will try to avoid negative feedback for everyone. They do this by avoiding reality and giving misleading feedback to themselves and others. They increase entropy through imaginary knowledge. Today decent immorality is popularly regarded as "morality." This attitude exists at all levels of society. It exists least in the family.
The family is the social unit for turning children into moral adults. Children are all ethical because they always increase their awareness. Immoral adults decrease their awareness by avoiding negative feedback until the awareness they acquired as children is destroyed. There exist two types of morality — 1) social morality and 2) personal morality. Social morality is concerned primarily with increasing the awareness of others. Personal morality is concerned primarily with increasing one's own awareness. Both types of morality are essential. Personal and social morality are causes and effects of each other. In the family the mother rarely increases her personal awareness directly, instead she is usually the principal source of expanding awareness for her children. Women through social morality are usually the catalysts that make children moral. Men are usually the direct expanders of awareness through personal morality. Immoral adults will neither increase their personal awareness nor mold ethical children into moral adults. Moral parents will insist that their children learn even if learning makes their children unhappy. This type of behavior is still commonly regarded as "moral" but only in the family. Every other social institution is becoming concerned only with making persons happy.
The same moral standards apply to both male and female adults. Both men and women have components of personal and social morality. As will be shown, there are evolutionary patterns that indicate that a concentration of social morality in the female and personal morality in the male makes for a more cohesive family and a larger percentage ofmoral adults in the human population.
The evolution of morality is essentially the continuing evolution of the family. The family, when it is a union of moral adults and ethical children, represents a microcosm of the Moral Society. The Moral Society is a critical union of moral adults. Any act that weakens the structure of the family is evil. Any act that strengthens and extends the family is good. The growth of immorality in society is directly associated with the weakening of the family by turning all persons into players of the Game of Pleasure.
A society becomes immoral when the majority of its leaders are immoral. An immoral society is a society in which all adults are immoral. An immoral society cannot produce good effects; it is doomed to irreversible entropy unless the immoral leaders can be replaced with moral men. Moral adults will always increase awareness. Any society with a majority of moral leaders will become moral if it has an ethical structure. A society has an ethical structure if and only if it is structured to maximize total awareness for all persons.
By constantly increasing his awareness, man has been creating the Moral Society. A Moral Society is a society in which all men are moral. In the last few years man has begun to reverse his multi-million-year trend of increasing his total awareness. Although ethical children and moral adults still remain, man is increasing his entropy by pursuing happiness without awareness. He is no longer forced to be ethical. He now has to choose because he has become increasingly aware of his own ethics. He can only be ethical when he is moral. Today man must play the Game of Life deliberately or he will not play the Game at all.
The decline in awareness is a direct result of the fact that all the nations of the world have an unethical structure and are becoming immoral societies. A society becomes immoral after it becomes unethical; it is unethical when most of its citizens play the Game of Pleasure most of the time. Unethical societies usually have immoral leaders who increase entropy by accepting ideology in lieu of science, and bureaucracy in lieu of feedback. The entire world is becoming immoral. To reverse the entropic decline of the human race and create the Moral Society, it will be necessary to create a new type of nation — a nation ethically structured to maximize the total awareness of the human race.
THE ETHICAL STATE
The transition stage between today's world and the Moral Society will be an Ethical State. An Ethical State is dedicated to the optimal expansion of total awareness for the entire human race. An Ethical State is a nation deliberately playing the Game of Life. It is a nation creating the Moral Society by helping all men to become moral. A united humanity constantly and deliberately expanding its total awareness is the beginning of the Moral Society. Only moral adults can create the Moral Society.
A nation is ethical if and only if most of its citizens are ethical. A society remains ethical only if most of its leaders are moral adults. Adults are only moral when they are generalists; however, not all generalists are moral men.
Because a moral person is deliberate in playing the Game of Life, he will attempt to maximize his awareness by maintaining sphericity, i.e., generalizing. This implies that a moral person will attempt to know all the sciences as well as the arts and humanities. In a modern, civilized society a knowledge of all the sciences is a necessary, but not a sufficient condition for a person being moral. Therefore, the leadership of an Ethical State would, as a minimum, have to be well versed in all the sciences. Today, a scientific illiterate is as unqualified to provide ethical leadership as is any conventional illiterate who can neither read nor write.
All men, not only geniuses, who have applied the simple and straightforward principles of science have enabled man to make remarkable progress. It is, therefore, astonishing on the surface that in spite of the proven success of the scientific method, every government in the world is ideologically based and dominated by scientific illiterates who eschew the scientific method in running the affairs of their people. These immoral leaders are destructive specialists in the psychosocial environment who pervert the accomplishments of science, such as modern weapons and the communications media, to accomplish unethical purposes. They increase man's entropy by destroying his feedback and forcing him to play the Game of Pleasure. No country has as yet either the purposes or the methods of an Ethical State. The creation of an Ethical State is not only a necessary pre-condition to the Moral Society, it is essential for man's survival. The reasons for and the structure of the Ethical State will be discussed fully in the succeeding chapters.
OF GOALS AND MEANS
Every description, hypothesis, theory and strategy in this book is tentative; they may all be in error. They represent only the first few steps of the scientific process. Science is the key to the Game of Life. Without scientific method, the Game of Life is perverted into a quest for personal power and/or the delusions of ideology and bureaucratic security. Without scientific method, ethics cannot be sustained. Methods for expanding total awareness can be altered and improved as awareness evolves. What cannot be altered is the ultimate goal of total awareness.
As an ultimate goal, total awareness has no basis in logic. It is a goal. It is not a method for achieving a goal. It is not a cause and effect relationship. It is an end in itself. It is the Game of Life. We can try to make total awareness a desirable goal by showing that it is 1) part of an already-existing pattern on which our survival depends; 2) compatible with other intuitively-desirable human goals; 3) ethically necessary, and 4) morally desirable. But this will not convince persons who cannot directly perceive the necessity of an ever-expanding total awareness as the only goal for mankind. It will only convince persons in whom the evolutionary force is stronger than the entropic force. It will only convince ethical persons. Those who will play the Game of Life and work to create the Moral Society are those who will want, for its own sake, a united humanity working to understand and master matter, life, and mind — a humanity evolving toward a time-transcending total awareness that will certainly extend beyond the stars. It is within our reach. But we can also lose it.
© John David Garcia, 1971, All rights Reserved.