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An interview with the author

Edward Close PhD, PE, SRFSPE on his book
Reality Begins With Consciousness: A paradigm shift that works

"Real scientists should have no need to defend their territory, because real science has no boundaries." Edward R. Close (p104)

Albert Einstein saw that the forces of electromagnetism and gravity could be unified with a few elegant equations, revealing the beauty, as he said, of some of "God's thoughts". He also reasoned that, if two of the fundamental forces of the universe could be unified, he should be able to discover the mathematical laws integrating all of them. He believed the universe to be ordered and logical, and that the laws governing it could be discovered and understood. A Theory of Everything would reveal the elegant harmony of the universe.

Einstein and many brilliant scientists since have tried to find this "Holy Grail" of science and failed. Why should we think that we have? We have done something that has not been done before: We have identified the missing elements of the current paradigm, and we have found a way to rectify the glaring omission of any mathematical representation of consciousness in the equations of the standard model. We have reunited science with human experience by formally describing the conscious act of the drawing of distinctions with a mathematical tool I call the calculus of distinctions. This simple act of including consciousness in the equations leads to a whole new understanding of time, space and consciousness.

What motivated us to seek an ever more comprehensive scientific paradigm? In my case, I believe the answer lies in the brain I was born with and the nature of my early environment. I believe the same may be true for Dr. Neppe.

The small town where I was born lay in a narrow valley in the St. Francois Mountains of Southeast Missouri. The largest high-grade iron ore and lead mines in the country lay to the north, a steep conical knob of porphyritic rhyolite, that had been mined for iron, stood on the east side of the valley, batholiths of granitic and basaltic rock blocked the flow of surface drainage to the south to form pools and waterfalls that were called "shut-ins". To the west lay several American Indian mounds along a small stream, and in the middle of the valley, the earthen works of the Civil War Confederate Fort Davidson and the building where Ulysses S. Grant received his commission as General, were located. Emigrants came from all over Europe in the eighteen hundreds to work in the mines. My great grandfather was one of them. In this setting, it seemed natural that by the age of ten I was interested in geology, archeology and languages. I collected civil war bullets, stone-age artifacts, and was learning two "foreign" languages.

By the age of thirteen, I had active interests in science, mathematics, history, archeology, geology, and linguistics. I found it fascinating that, given observable facts, one could, with nothing more than one's own mind, discover new facts about things both seen and unseen. At that early age, I knew I wanted to be a scientist. At the age of fourteen, I discovered Einstein's relativity, and I knew I wanted to be a physicist. In my naivete, I thought physics was the answer to everything. I see this same naivete in most mainstream physicists today. Physics was my first love. There was, however, a problem. This problem wasn't to surface until several years later when I was a physics and math major in college, but it was there from the beginning. The problem was, in a word, experience. I had experienced things that did not fit within the materialistic framework of mainstream physics.

From a very early age, I experienced things that seemed to be extensions of the five senses. These experiences could not easily be explained within the limits of known physical and biological science. Basically, some of my experiences did not easily fit within a materialistic paradigm. These experiences happened occasionally, unexpectedly and with no apparent cause. There were, however, some locations and circumstances that seemed conducive to them. They seemed to happen most often when I lay in bed just before sleep, or when I was alone in a natural setting. Opportunities to be alone in nature were frequent, as I was an only child, and our back yard bordered on the untouched wilderness of the St. Francois Mountains. I also remember having these experiences in the classroom in the fourth or fifth grade. Were they simply states of heightened auditory, visual, tactile or other awareness? The only person I confided in was my father. He allayed my concerns by saying that they were signs of "growing", and that he had had similar experiences as a child. They were nothing to worry about. Accepting them as normal, I began to analyze and even enjoy them.

These experiences impacted my thinking leading me to realize that some aspect of my consciousness might occasionally, under certain circumstances, be operating in ways that did not correspond with the pervasive everyday perception of reality. If this were true, the simple materialistic paradigm I was being taught in science classes could not explain it.

Because of my personal experiences, and some controlled experiments I participated in during my second and third years as a physics major in college, I also began to study everything that came out of the areas of consciousness research. I realized that concepts outside currently accepted physical science were required. I also realized that if consciousness existed somehow outside the physical body, it could explain some of the rare-event phenomena called psi phenomena, but that this would require a completely new theory of space, time, and consciousness.

Was it purely a coincidence that Dr. Neppe and I met? We had both joined ISPE in hopes of connecting with kindred souls with similar intellectual interests. As we began to share our thoughts, we realized that they fitted together like the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. And coincidences began to happen. Soon after we began our collaboration, we advised each other of prior commitments involving travel that would ostensibly interrupt our regular communications. Vernon would be traveling to South Africa, I to Egypt. I was participating in the production of a documentary film, and a travel agent employed by the company producing the film had arranged my itinerary. Vernon's itinerary was also set. When we compared flight schedules and layovers, we found that we would both be in Amsterdam on the same day! Without any pre-planning, we were able to spend several hours together discussing some of the basic concepts of our theories. These discussions were recorded and became part of the archives and manuscripts leading to this book. It could have been a coincidence, but the theme of this book emphasizing consciousness as it does, at least allows for other possibilities.

Other synchronous events followed. Both of us lead very busy professional lives, with client-driven schedules, deadlines and multiple commitments. In spite of this, we would often call each other at opportune times and find that we had been thinking along the same lines. We would wake up in the middle of the night with epiphanies that were nearly identical, or that would fit together in complementary ways. The frequency of such synchronous experiences led us to suspect a hyper-dimensional connection of some sort. As we developed our new paradigm, the possibility and reality of such a link became more and more apparent. When consciousness is seen to operate in more than four dimensions, synchronicity becomes the rule rather than the exception.

These experiences, while personal and anecdotal from a scientific point of view, convince me that science in general, and physics in particular, needs to be expanded to transcend the materialistic box in which it has confined itself. This conviction led to the concepts presented in my 1997 book "Transcendental Physics" and eventually to this book in collaboration with Dr. Vernon Neppe.

We are confident that our Triadic Dimensional-Distinction Vortical Paradigm shift will usher in a new consciousness-based comprehensive science with a tremendously expanded scope, a scope including the spectrum of human physical, mental and spiritual experience. This book and associated articles and papers form the basis of a scientific paradigm shift unlike any in the history of the search for truth and understanding.

Edward R. Close, PhD, PE, SRFSPE
Jackson, Missouri, USA.

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