Values and Physical Reality
One thing which I should make clear before proceeding further with The Chrysalis, and which I probably didn’t make clear in the past, is this: It tends to be the “common sense” of the mental-rational consciousness structure that space and time are measurable quanta. But that our experience of space and time can be treated and handled like measurable quanta is not proof that they are physical at all. It is sometimes simply a convenience to treat them as measurable quanta. In fact, they’re not. They are values or powers.
Now, because physical reality and consciousness structures are very much intertwined and reciprocal, there is no one “physical reality”, and probable worlds theory was no more relevant than in this respect. Every distinct consciousness structure implies a different physical reality, because space and time are not “things”. Rather, they are principally the feelings we have for them, and that means “values”. Unfortunately, also, because we have identified “values” also with measurable quanta — x and y values, for example — this is how space and time now appear to us — as principally geometrical or mathematical abstractions.
Something, though, of a remnant of the old ways remain when we speak of being in “a good space” or “a bad space”, or of having a “good time” or a “bad time”. Here, spaces and times are treated as values, and so too in terms of “sacred spaces” and “profane spaces”. Although we tend to think of space as extension, and time as duration, and these as measurable entities and quantities, and especially as perspective constructs, they aren’t essentially that at all. They are the feelings we have for them. This helps account for why Gebser prefers to speak of “intensification” of consciousness rather than “expansion” of consciousness. For some forms of consciousness, spaces and times are alive.
I’ve noticed that some people can’t parallel park, for example. That’s because they haven’t acquired the perspectivist “feel” for the spaces. They haven’t completely learned perspective perception.
There are moments when the spaces you are in feel expansive or contractive and claustrophobic. There times that feel too short or too long, depending on whether you are enjoying yourself or merely enduring. These are very primary experiences of physical reality. Before you learn to measure space and time, your feelings are what govern your relationship to spaces and times, and your primary experience is that these spaces and times are values, qualities, or intensities. In that sense, space and time are e-valuations.
What this means is, that we musn’t assume that “physical reality” is at all uniform and homogenous across time, or even in contemporary terms in other people’s experiences. We can’t really access the consciousness of the archaic, the magical, or the mythical without awareness of the fact that physical reality for these was entirely different than it is for contemporary man. It is in this sense that physical reality “mirrors” the consciousness structure, and space and time are very sympathetic and obliging in reflecting back to the human mind its own self-understanding. The willful, the sensate, the emotive, and the intellectual predilections all occupy different physical realities and spacetime configurations.
So, when you enter fully into a different consciousness structure, you enter fully into a different physical reality. Or, as is said “all that is old is made new again”. That’s largely because of the sympathetic relationship that exists between consciousness and physical reality. But the upshot of it is that time and space are principally values, and quite elastic and quite variable with mood and feeling. It’s really “thinking” that “things” them.
But more on that later.