A Comprehensive Theory of Consciousness II:
Foundation for a Theory of Meta-Systems

Abstract: Toward a Science of Consciousness (Tucson III conference) April 27-May 2,1998

Gary E. Schwartz
Professor of Psychology, Neurology, and Psychiatry and director of Human Energy Systems Laboratory, University of Arizona
Linda G. Russek
Research associate and codirector of Human Energy Systems Laboratory, University of Arizona
Donald E. Watson
Senior Research Fellow, International Society for Philosophical Enquiry

The Theory of Enformed Systems is foundational to a Theory of Meta-Systems that describes the common roots of all holistic systems. These roots are expressed in three levels of observable and inferable aspects of systems: (1) enformy systems are nonmaterial and nonphysical (where "physical" indicates the domain of physics); (2) enformed energy systems are nonmaterial and physical; and (3) enformed material systems are material and physical. Living organisms comprise all three levels of systems; indeed, living material systems are emergent products of the two more fundamental systems. The phenomena and noumena commonly attributed to, or identified with, consciousness are primary because they result from properties of enformy systems. The "behavioral" aspects of material systems derive from properties of energy systems, and their physical forms result from interactions between enformy systems and energy systems. These two aspects are mediated through morphogenesis for organisms and quantum coherence for photons.

 At the fundamental level of enformy systems, there is no distinction between living and non-living systems. The theory of meta-systems therefore provides an examplar for two heretofore mysterious phenomena: (1) quantum coherence, as expressed in the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen phenomenon; and (2) the "nonlocal mind," as identified by Dossey. In humans, telepathy, PK, and OBEs occur when enformy systems that are associated with specific material systems ("bodies") cohere with remote ispeons and share their common elements of enformation ("memory") in spacetime, where enformation is the quality of nonrandomness in a particular frame of reference. Ordinary consciousness occurs when the enformy systems remain "local" to the material systems to produce perceptions, recollections of specific memories, and macroscopic behaviors in three-space. Moreover, dynamic brain states reflect the enformed energy system through "recurrent feedback interactions," for example. In correlated photons, nonlocal interactions that are paranormal under relativity occur by the same process: the enformy systems of the elemental photons cohere in spacetime. In general, elements of all systems share "memory" (enformation) concerning the history of their interactions. The Theory of Enformed Systems and its derivative Theory of Meta-Systems represent major advances in the theory of systems. Moreover, the transdisciplinary nature of these theories makes them prime candidates for a new scientific paradigm.