Magical Studies: Cosmology I

Cosmology has a few different meanings. While I adore physics and find the study of cosmology within that science to be purely a joyful academic exercise, in this blog entry, I am focusing upon the philosophical (specifically metaphysical school) study of cosmology. Within the school of metaphysics, as we look upon the matter of cosmology, there are a few basic questions that must be addressed. These questions are:

  • What is the nature of the Universe?
  • How did it come to exist?
  • What is the Universe made of?
  • How does it function?
  • What is the purpose of the Universe?
  • How do we know what we know of the Universe?

In a related vein, we also have the questions pertaining to oneself that require to be addressed. These questions are:

  • What is the nature of my existence?
  • What is the purpose of my existence?
  • What is the purpose of consciousness?
  • How do I relate to the Universe?

Before we address the personal questions of existence, let us take a moment to look at the larger questions, of which these are a subset.

What is the nature of the Universe?
The Universe is a complex thing. Various different mythologies can be used to describe it. Ultimately, it is my understanding that the Universe is comprised of various elements that can be observed and interacted with by many different means. I believe that the Universe is an organic whole wherein all parts are interdependent upon the others for their existence and function. I believe that no two people will have identical experiences of the Universe due to the complexity of it.

How did it come to exist?
The physical aspects of the Universe came to exist via a method that is described by the standard cosmological theory.  The ‘creation’ event is a mystery and one that I do not believe we will ever fully comprehend. The spiritual aspects of the Universe came into existence with a parallel event. It is my understanding that this can be described in many different theological terms. All theological descriptions are allegorical of the initial event and I think that as such, all theological descriptions are valid. The World Tree and the Nine Worlds of the Teutonic peoples has equal place as the Judeo-Christian vision of the cosmos as the atheist’s vision of the cosmos.

What is the Universe made of?
I briefly touched upon this in my response to the two earlier questions. Please, allow me to state it directly: the Universe is made of physical and spiritual elements. The physical elements can be understood, observed, and interacted with in accordance to what we know of the material world. The spiritual element is suffused through and incorporated into the physical elements. It is observable by subtle methods and can be interacted with by means of focused mental effort and the exercises that make up the core activities of spiritual behaviors as observed in a religious context and in occultism. This includes but is not limited to the various schools of magic practiced since antiquity.

What is the function of the Universe?
The function of the Universe is the same as the purpose of its existence. This is to simply exist. There is no vast, grand scheme behind the existence of it. It exists and self perpetuates. I do not believe that the Universe technically has a beginning (as all was present within the quantum singularity prior to the ‘Big Bang’) and that it will not have an ending (because this requires a violation of the first law of thermodynamics).

What is the purpose of the Universe?
See above.

How do we know what we know of the Universe?
All knowledge is based upon experience. We experience the Universe by way of our senses. It is my understanding that our senses are not limited to taste, touch, smell, sight, and sound. I believe that we also have spiritual cognates to these senses that can be experienced. It is due to a failure of our language (which is heavily biased towards the classical five senses) that we do not have adequate descriptions of these spiritual cognates. We learn and extrapolate information by way of incorporating details that we become aware of via experience (ie: we see to read a book). At the core of all the information gathering, however, our knowledge comes from experience. All experience is colored by our unique circumstances as a participant-observer of the Universe.

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