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Celestrialism is a philosophy which strives to encompass every Mormon teaching and personal revelation, add the best principles and practices that the world has to offer, so that we can work actively toward earth-life godliness. In other words, we don't want to wait for the afterlife in order to attain the blessings of Celestial glory, and we have faith that we can do it right here and now.
Materialism, Spirit, and Physicality
It is first necessary to push aside the notion of materialism as greed, which is a shallow interpretation at best. The term materialism refers to a philosophy which states that "matter is all that exists", which fact is consistent with Mormon teachings, since "all spirit is matter, but it is more fine" (D&C 131:7). As for the physical world, clearly physical matter is matter as well as spiritual matter. In order to distinguish Mormon teaching from other forms of materialism, celestrialism prefers the term physicality to refer to a materialism that encompasses both the physical and the spiritual worlds. Other forms of materialism can be viewed as a rejection of the spirit. This notion of physicality opens the door to the best insights from our most ruthlessly materialistic scientists. It is simply amazing how much of modern science agrees with Mormon teachings, both historical and modern. Some examples follow.
Eternality and infinity
Calculus has shown that an approach to infinity can provide a more accurate description of the physical world. This notion of infinity is constrained by a limit, exactly because the 1/0 operator is considered "out of bounds" or "undefined". In spite of this apparent restriction, calculus underlies most of the greatest science that has been produced since Isaac Newton. Celestrialism shares this view of infinity, which is best thought of as an operator denoting a very large number. It is obvious that this concept of the infinite underlies any notion of the eternal. Eternal life then, or living as a god, is having every power, knowledge, longevity, means, and so forth as required in order to maintain oneself in the path towards greater such, eternal progression.
The term eternality is specially defined in Celestrialism to denote this concept which underlies the notion of eternal life and exaltation, as well as the fact that we are co-eternal with God. It also applies to the universe in which we find ourselves, for that is our context where ever we are. This co-eternal universe is also the container for God's creations, the heavens, the many worlds, our physical and spiritual bodies. Thus, eternality does not equate to an ideal infinite, but rather to a power that is vastly large with respect to a certain order of creation, the stars and galaxies that pepper our skies, for example.
A being who is actively engaged in eternal progress by definition is not in posession of "all power", "all knowledge", or an "infinite progeny", since no limit is implied by the terms. The very concept of allness loses reputability in light of eternality. God is a human being who attained a close approximation of these ideals, so that from our perspective he is as good as eternal. Yet this same being, who made heaven and earth continues to progress, and he invites us to become like him. Since we too are human beings and co-eternal with him, we are able to obtain our own infinity operators, as it were; share in his capacities, and join him in divine glory. Eternality is thus not an impossible, undefined, or out of bounds state, but it is something that God has already accomplished as a human being, and we can do it too.
Bearing function, upwinging
The questions become when and how to make this progress toward eternality happen sooner and faster. In fact, Celestrialism must imply that we as God's seed are able to obtain the fruits of eternality in earth life. At least we can practice the best possible temple mormonism. Work hard as if to obtain all power, the essence of being actively engaged in righteous pursuits (D&C27:27). Seek the best knowledge (AofF13), with the understanding that any knowledge is within our reach, and "whatever principle of intelligence. we attain unto in this life, it will rise with us in the resurrection" (D&C130:18). Live healthily with longevity in sight as on the path to everlasting life. Seek the blessings of polygamy, and eternal lives from God, so that you can enjoy all of these benefits now. By approaching ideals, you demonstrate your desire to be like God, and it gets results. Moreover it follows therefore that we will have "so much the advantage in the world to come" (D&C130:19), and we exuberantly attain as many of the blessings of celestial glory in earth life as we can.
DNA Intelligence isomorphism
A striking feature of Celestrialism is thinking big. For example, we construct a continuum from information through self-knowledge to intelligence, this kernel of intelligence is what makes us most fundamentally immortal and co-eternal with God and the universe. A crucial observation which derives from this construction is that DNA and intelligence share fundamentally and overlap in this continuum. DNA is a set of instructions for the construction of a physical body in the context of the cell and the physical world. It is likely that intelligence functions similarly for the construction of a spritual body, so that we would have spiritual DNA, spiritual cells, and a spritual context or world for the construction the spiritual body. In other words, there is a clear isomorphism between the spriritual and physical worlds, which is informed by our intelligence. It is our intelligence which gives rise to them in a context of mothers, worlds, and gods; our peers in co-eternality.
As peers in co-eternality, we share in the capacities of the God. Our capacities arise from the kind of being that we are, intelligences expressing a physical and a sprirtual component. As human beings and children of our Heavenly Father and Mother, we possess an inate intelligence, which likely encompasses the genetic code of our DNA. It is evident from the teachings of Mormonism that our intelligences preceded the creation of our spritual bodies, so that our intelligence also likely comprises the fundamental expression of the person that we are. Procreation is the most obvious example of how we share in God's capacity to make human bodies. Mothers provide the context for the generation of these bodies, which are necessary for our interaction with the physical world. Celestrialism demands that we seek the highest blessings that are obtainable in earth life, our time in this physical realm.
Just as the DNA provides the instruction set for the construction of these physical bodies in the given context, it is likely that intelligence also encompassess a spiritual DNA, as it were, which encodes for the construction of a spritual body in the context of the spirit world. Our spritual bodies provide an expression of our intelligence that can act in the spirit world.
Given the fact that our bodies and minds share these characteristics with that of God, we bear physical human seed and so likewise we have the capacity to bear spiritual seed. In the context of Celestrialism, these blessings are to be sought after in earthlife, and the spiritual seed which we bear now are presumably forerunners into their own premortality. We too as the vessels of God bear spirits which can choose an earthlife, just as we did.
Just as we may participate in spiritual creation, we may also partake of the spirit and intelligence of our mortal and post-mortal loved ones. The sealing ordinance makes our link with them firm.
DNA like intelligence, helical wavelike beauty, physicality v. spirituality.
Question evalutate: Is a physical body required in order to have a spirit?
more to come...
Dr. Love is a biochemist and staff scientist at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine protein crystallography lab. As founder of The GNU-Darwin Distribution, he is attempting to advance free software for the benefit of the user community at large.
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