|Noted biologist and author,|
Dr. Rupert Sheldrake.
Noting that the Judeo-Christian tradition, which gave us "the vision of a progressive evolution in time," always had an explicit goal in the future, Sheldrake asks Cohen (a proponent of the teaching he calls "evolutionary enlightenment") what an 'end-state' to the evolutionary process would be.
In observing that it is a "big picture" answer that frankly verges on "the realm of fantasy," Cohen notes that the "direction or the 'teleos' of the evolutionary process is towards consciousness itself."
|Spiritual teacher, Andrew Cohen,|
Editor-in-Chief of EnlightenNext
Noting that the process has "barely begun," Cohen observes that we are at the very beginning of a process that is of such infinite proportions that it is nearly impossible to conceive. Nevertheless, he calls this "urge to become conscious" our primary driving motivation.
For his part, Sheldrake - an innovative biologist who is noted for his theory of 'morphic fields' - observes that "there is already a large degree of consciousness throughout the universe, and perhaps that extra awareness comes from us, rather than somehow by our own conscious development we are going to inject consciousness into the rest of the universe."
Their discussion is a fascinating leading-edge discussion of concepts that have long been an integral aspect of the ultimate teachings of both Mahayana Buddhism and the Advaita Vedanta, as two of the most innovative contemporary minds approach what may be thought of as "the biggest question" from two very different directions . . . and nonetheless come to agreement.
"When consciousness awakens to itself, Cohen concludes, "that's when everything comes alive." A point which is acceded whole-heartedly by Sheldrake.