We are continuing our meditations on The Physics of Angels. Rupert Sheldrake tells us that:
Instead of everything being explained in terms of smaller bits and ultimate particles—which was the way science worked in the modern era—we can now think of the universe holistically, organized in a series of levels of organization in a nested hierarchy or holarchy. At each level, things are both wholes and parts.
Atoms are wholes consisting of subatomic parts, themselves wholes at a lower level. Molecules are wholes made up of atomic parts; crystals are wholes made of molecular parts. Likewise, cells within tissues, tissues within organs, organs within organisms, organisms within societies, societies within ecosystems, ecosystems within Gaia, Gaia within the Solar System, the Solar System within the Galaxy, and so on—everywhere there are levels within levels of organization, each system at the same time both a whole made up of parts and a part within a large whole.
At each level, the whole is more than the sum of the parts.
Rupert suggests that
…this wholeness depends on what I call a morphic field, an organizing field that underlies the system’s structure. Morphic fields are structured by morphic resonance. They have memory within them. Indeed, they are the bearers of the memory inherent in nature.
At each level of organization, morphic fields animate the organisms, giving them their habits and their capacity to organize themselves. In this sense, molecules, stars, and galaxies are alive, not just microbes plants, and animals.
And if they are alive, are they conscious? Do they have minds or intelligences associated with them?
Consider levels of organization such as Gaia, or the solar system, or the galaxy. If the fields that organize them are associated with spirit intelligence, or a consciousness, then we are talking about superhuman consciousness. If a galaxy has consciousness, spirit, or mind, that mind is going to be inconceivably larger in scope than that of any professor at Harvard or intellectual in Paris.
I responded that
In the first century, when the Christian scriptures were written, the number one question going around the Mediterranean basin was this: Are the angels our friends or our foes? Everyone believed in angels in Greece and Rome; they were a part of the accepted cosmology. But the question was, Can we trust these invisible forces of the universe that are moving planets and the elements? How trustworthy is the universe?
The answer from the Christians was that the Cosmic Christ rules over the angels, thus the universe is trustworthy.
Adapted from Matthew Fox and Rupert Sheldrake, The Physics of Angels, pp. 15-22.
To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Banner Image: Choir of angels, detail from “The Assumption of the Virgin” by Francesco Botticini, c. 1475. Wikimedia Commons.
Queries for Contemplation
Does it alter your way of looking at the world to recognize “Nested Hierarchy” and “Holarchy” and angels overseeing cosmic processes and Christ (or Buddha or Image of God) overseeing angels?
The Physics of Angels: Exploring the Realm Where Science & Spirit Meet
By Matthew Fox and Rupert Sheldrake
When was the last time a scientist and a theologian discussed angels together? What are angels? Many people believe in angels, but few can define these enigmatic spirits. Now visionary theologian Matthew Fox and acclaimed biologist Rupert Sheldrake—pioneers in modern religious thinking and scientific theory—launch a groundbreaking exploration into the ancient concept of the angel and restore dignity, meaning, and joy to our time-honored belief in these heavenly beings.