All understanding involves the dynamic
interaction of reason and intuition, based directly on the conscious and
unconscious processes respectively.
In Western society, scientific understanding
employs predominantly the rational (analytical) paradigm which recognises
solely the conscious process. This involves the separation of object from
subject in an impersonal detached view of truth. Mathematics represents
the extreme version of this specialised use of reason.
Understanding in Eastern society
- especially spiritual - has traditionally placed more emphasis on the
unconscious (holistic) paradigm. Here object and subject are directly united
in an experiential view of truth. Transpersonal psychology (i.e. mystical
or esoteric understanding) represents the extreme version of this specialised
use of intuition.
For many the great attraction of
mathematics is the absolute nature of truth involved, free - in formal
terms - of all "vague" intuitive interference.
Others seek truth experientially,
through direct unity with reality, finding the formulations of "specialised"
science to be purely relative, and ultimately illusory.
Thus historically, these two approaches
- offering two extreme views of truth - have developed largely apart, with
radically different perspectives and language of communication. Consequently,
little success has been achieved in terms of their integration.
However - remarkable though it may
seem - mathematics and transpersonal psychology are in truth fully complementary.
Thus, the amazing marriage of both awaits, which has the power to dramatically
alter our whole vision of reality.
The holistic approach which seeks
to make explicit this inherent unity of reason and intuition, I refer to
This can be applied at different
levels. For example, the relationships of physics and psychology are -
when appropriately understood - fully complementary. Transrational physics
thus entails a dynamic way of structuring reality so that for every relationship
in physics, a corresponding (mirror) complementary relationship in psychology
can be readily identified. Transrational psychology would then represent
the other side of the coin starting with psychology to identify complementary
relationships in physics.
However at an even deeper level,
the fundamental structure of reality - in both physical and psychological
terms - is mathematical. Thus a potentially more fruitful synthesis exists
as between mathematics and (transpersonal) psychology.
Incredible as it may appear the
great richness and subtlety of transpersonal psychology can be accurately
structured (indirectly) in terms of mathematical relationships.
What this really entails is that
there are indeed two complementary mathematical systems.
The first is the conventional system
of (quantitative) mathematical relationships based (directly) on the specialised
use of reason.
The second - and largely unknown
system - is a complementary set of (qualitative) mathematical relationships
- which though indirectly capable of rational expression - is based (directly)
on the specialised use of intuition.
Thus, when appropriately understood
(i.e. from a transrational perspective), all (quantitative) mathematical
relationships can be translated in (qualitative) psychological terms. This
ultimately provides a coherent means of raising mathematical understanding
to the mystical level of pure contemplation (as with the Pythagorean ideal).
In complementary fashion, all (qualitative)
psychological relationships can be translated in reduced (quantitative)
mathematical terms. This in turn, provides a means, of precisely structuring
all the various stages of (transpersonal) psychological development in
These ideas can initially seem somewhat
unfamiliar. This is because we are not accustomed to looking at reality
in this manner. The following contributions will attempt however to make
explicit some of the implications of this (potentially) revolutionary approach.