Aware Without a Brain

We know that our bodies, including our brains, decompose after we die.  Some scientists have argued that we could not be aware of anything after death since our brains would no longer be functioning.  They would say you would not be conscious if you were brain dead.

Yet, there are some interesting things that happen in nature that might make you question that statement.  For example, birds migrate to exact locations without a map, compass, or computer-generated directions.  Is this instinct ingrained in the birds?  Scientists still might argue that the instinct is implanted in the brain, so that when the bird’s brain dies, so does this awareness.

But what about plants that are aware of their environments?  Plants do not have any brains, yet scientists are finding that plants are somehow aware of their surroundings.  Some plants have modified their nectar and flowers within less than a week in response to whether it is a moth or hummingbird that is feeding on it.  Other plants have generated toxic chemicals to kill off invasive plants, but do not generate those chemicals against friendly neighboring plants.  Trees have been found to spread their root system out to share carbon with fungi root systems in a symbiotic relationship. 

Some plants have been observed protecting related plants by sharing the nutrients in the common areas by restricting their root growth, while when next to plants that are not related to them, their root systems grow much larger.  Mother trees also have been found to share their carbon with small offspring that receive little sunlight.  How do these plants know what is going on around them?  Are they aware of their environment without a brain?

It is possible that we could still be aware of what was going on even after our brains died.  In other words, if you are still thinking after you die, then you do not need a brain or a body to think.  You would be conscious without a brain.  Now, that would present a new problem, wouldn’t it?  What would you be thinking about?  You wouldn’t have a family, a job, meals, and any of your senses to distract you from thinking.  You would be alone with yourself just to think.  What would that be like? 

If you have never meditated, this would be a first for you.  You could lose touch with any sense of reality within minutes.  You could start hallucinating within ten minutes.  It would not be a pretty picture.

That is why if you are aware after death, you must have help.  Jesus is your best bet because he will be a friendly face in a strange environment of awareness without a brain or five senses.  He can bring you to God, and together they can lead you through the chaotic maze that may be Hades. 

Somebody might say that this will all be created by you in your consciousness, but it does not matter because even if you have created it, it will still be the reality of what you are experiencing.  The reality of your old world will be gone.  Your reality in your new world will be entirely different, and if you do not have a guide, you could easily get lost forever.  And once you get lost, you may be lost for eternity.     

God’s Kingdom

What do you think God’s kingdom will be like?  What will it look like?  Will there be a golden gate with angels escorting us though the gate, with clouds under our feet?  Will we have to breathe, eat, drink, and go to the bathroom anymore?  Will there be animals?  Will there be trees, green grass, and plants?  Well, of course, nobody knows.

Our expectations of what heaven is like are typically based on our experiences on earth.  It is quite likely that our experiences do not remotely relate to what God’s kingdom is like.  It would be like comparing Einstein’s gravitational world to the quantum world.  The rules in one world would not apply to the other.  The experiences in one world would not be found in the other. 

So, it is rather futile to attempt to imagine what heaven is like based on our earthly experiences.  It will be God’s world, which is probably vastly different than our world.  A good example is attempting to define dark energy.  We have faith that it exists, but we have no idea what it is.

And it may be equally as difficult attempting to determine a precise eschatology or ending of human existence on earth.  The Bible provides many stories including metaphors and images about the end-world that should not be taken literally.  A disintegrated society and worldly events have been linked to the end of mankind and the second coming of Christ.  Fundamentalist take prophesies within the Bible, particularly the Book of Revelation, literally.  Dispensationalism has become the dominant eschatological perspective today as leaders of mega churches and television evangelists use a strict interpretation of the Bible. 

It is important to recall that the stories in the Bible were fashioned by the culture of that time and its audience.  The metaphors and images were designed to appeal to a people who had little education, but had great imaginations.  And the writing was very effective.  It is highly unlikely that the authors intended a literal meaning in their passages.

So when is the second coming or the Final Judgment?  What will it be like?  In my mind, these questions are likened to the first paragraph.  We will have no answers based on what we know and have experienced in our world.  The best we can do is to read the Bible and try to understand the teachings of Jesus, employing this to the best of your ability during your temporal stay.  Then when the judgments come, be prepared for anything.

Classic dispensationalists believe that there will be a second coming of Christ, then 1,000 years, then the Final Judgment.  If this is true, and I have no idea whether it is or not, we might have a rather lengthy period of testing before our final judgment.         

Law vs. Grace

I always found it interesting to compare the Old Testament with the New Testament.  They are like night and day in many ways, but they do unite under one God. 

The Old Testament is based on the Law of God as delivered by Moses and all the many righteous rules and customs that were required to be followed.  The penalty was harsh when somebody broke the laws, which primarily were things that you should not do, which was a very negative approach to life. 

The new covenant brought to earth by Jesus was a positive approach which stated if you do certain things, you will receive God’s grace.  And those things were basically repenting your sins and believing in Jesus Christ who died to pay your sin debts in full.

In effect, you could follow many religions which have saddled followers with their laws of the worldly world telling you what you should not do, or you could accept the gift of God who sent down His son to die so that our sins could be erased. 

So when Christians die, they should not have any guilt if they have repented and truly believe in Jesus as their Savior.  Christianity is the only religion which offers a free “Get-Out of Guilt” card by believing in Jesus.  Guilt would otherwise follow us into death and probably would drag us into chaos.

I am not saying that Christianity is the only religion that believes in God.  But I am saying that you have the best chance to avoid feelings of guilt by being a Christian.  Other religions may serve you equally well in preparing for God, but a negative approach could cause your conscience to bother you at the doorstep of death.  In fact the definition of guilt is: “The fact of having committed a breach of conduct, especially violating a law involving a penalty.” 

Violating the laws of any religion may remove your innocence, so as you wait to enter God’s kingdom, you have a feeling of fear and trepidation.  This is not the feeling you want when you die.  You want your thoughts to be pure when you enter the kingdom of death.  Christianity does that by removing your guilt.

Now, the problem with an elitist Christianity is that some Christians believe they are the new “chosen ones” replacing the Jewish people who were granted that position in the Old Testament.  Many believe they are entitled to a free ride to God’s kingdom by simply believing in Jesus.

Many Christians repent for about an hour each week and then go out and sin again.  They are recidivists of many sins, yet they believe there will be no consequences.  This is far from true.  The Bible is very clear about multiple judgments that await the believers.  There will be consequences for what you did during your life.  Your actions and inactions on earth will be judged.  Make no mistake about that. 

Nobody knows what the judgments will be like.  I guess the best approach is to be prepared.  Even believers may go to Hades to be tested by both tormentors and seducers.  You need to be ready to respond like Jesus would have done.  You must study the teachings of Jesus so you can employ His techniques during these tests. 

The tests will not be easy.  They could involve pain and torture.  Nobody knows, but try to prepare for these tests by thinking of what might be waiting for us. 

Some interpretations of the Bible indicate that even Jesus went to Hades for three days.  Some who have had near-death experiences mentioned this dark, hellish environment with monsters that attacked them, inflicting great pain.  So would you fight or flee the monster or would you try to convert it?  If it struck you on the right cheek, would you turn your left cheek towards it?  Would you be like Jesus?

Our Minds Are Terrible Things to Waste

We spend days, weeks, months, years, and decades frittering away our time on earth.  Our thoughts are devoted to coming up with ways to make more money, to creating better pick-up lines so that we can have more sex, and to studying how we can obtain more or bigger toys than our neighbors.  Our minds are wasted on things that do not matter because when we die, those things and conquests stay behind.  Our minds will have been wasted on trivial pursuits.

Even if you are not thinking after you die, you will not have accomplished anything if you only pursued selfish desires.  Your sexual prowess died with your body.  Your bank accounts, real estate holdings, stock, bonds, cars, furniture, precious metals, and jewelry will be left with your heirs, who will probably spend it quicker than you gathered it.

If you can leave the world a better place than when you encountered it, you will have accomplished something during your life.  That would be an achievement.  In effect, you would be gone, but you would have left something behind that could be beneficial to others.  All this is true, no matter whether you are thinking or not thinking after you die.

But the next step is the most important one.  If you are still thinking after you die, then you better have something to think about.  If you let you imagination take control of things, you will be lost in the eternal darkness of chaos.  Your mind may be prepared through your study of philosophy and great thinkers, but unfortunately, it will not be prepared sufficiently. 

By yourself, you cannot navigate the ocean of chaos with its tides and hurricanes and whirlpools and rogue waves.  You must have a captain with a compass, and you must believe in both with all your heart and soul and let the captain transport you through the raging storms and mountainous waves and powerful currents.  You must welcome this captain aboard your vessel as soon as you set sail.  He has a compass that will steer you in the right direction… one you could never find by yourself.  If you do not believe in this captain and do not bring him on board, you will wreck and will be pulled out to sea, never to be seen in a controlled environment again.

Even though this captain will know all your sins during life, you must confess them anyway.  He will forgive you those transgressions just for believing in him.  What if you did something during your life that led to horrible consequences for a third party, but you never knew about it?  Or what if you confessed a sin that you thought harmed a third party, but it did not? 

How would the captain deal with those acts?  Well, the captain will know all those things, so as long as you confess your sins and believe in him, you will be forgiven, no matter how it turned out.  In effect, you do not need to burden yourself with any of these questions.  You will have no regrets or sorrow or guilt, because the captain will have taken all those emotions from you since you believed in him.

Our Incredible Shrinking Universe

Science – Figures Composition of Sun and Universe


The majority of cosmologists believe our universe is expanding at increasing speeds.  This theory is supported by the “red shift” discovered by Edwin Hubbell and others.  In effect, inflation and the Big Bang theories explained the shift to the red, the lower frequency part of the spectrum, for light emitted from galaxies. 

The red shift was found to be greater for the more distant galaxies.   They are estimated to be traveling about 90% of the speed of light away from us.  Hubbell and most modern cosmologists believed this proved that the universe was expanding at accelerating speeds.  But this acceleration cannot be explained by gravity, which would predict a decrease in expansion over time.

Jeffrey Kluger, in the March 31, 2014, edition of Time magazine, reported that John Kovac’s team at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics recently discovered a distortion in the microwave radiation that permeates our universe “like seeing ripples in a pond” probably caused by the Big Bang, producing Einstein’s predicted gravitational waves in an inflationary universe.  But just because about 13.8 billion years ago, a primal explosion which expelled matter and energy faster than the speed of light caused these ripples in Einstein’s cosmic fabric of time and space, does not rule out another event that could have reversed the expansion.       

Many cosmologists believe that dark matter is responsible for holding galaxies, clusters, super clusters, and filaments together within our universe.  But cosmologists look to dark energy to explain what is happening among the galaxies; however, this mysterious force is not a perfect fit for the inflationary theory.  With inflation speed racing light speed, how can we expect to see the Big Bang or the earliest galaxies dating back over 12 billion years?  If the expanding universe is going slower than the speed of light (based on Einstein’s theories) would not the light from ancient galaxies have raced by us billions of years ago, never to be seen again?

A new theory of cosmology may be in order.  Christof Wetterich, a physicist at the University of Heidelberg in Germany, believes that the universe may be shrinking.   In his paper, A Universe without Expansion, he discussed a new theory “where the universe shrinks rather than expands during the radiation and matter dominated periods”.  He argued that the red shift also could be explained by a shrinking universe. 

He wrote:  “Only dimensionless ratios as the distance between galaxies divided by the atom radius are observable.  The cosmological increase of this ratio would also be attributed to shrinking atoms.”  He noted that the light emitted by atoms was also determined by masses of the elementary particles, including electrons.  If the mass of an atom decreased, its frequency would be red-shifted.

Wetterich’s shrinking universe did not negate the expansion of the universe during a short inflationary period.  But under his theory, the Big Bang no longer was a ‘singularity’ where the density of the universe would be infinite.  Now, the Big Bang stretched back in the past for basically an infinite period of time without a singularity.  One theory might be that the combination of expansion from the Big Bang and contraction into the Big Crunch would alternate back and forth forever.

However, Wetterich’s theory cannot be tested.  Mass can be measured only relative to something else.  For example, scientists compare any mass being measured relative to a kilogram standard in a vault in Paris.   If the mass in our universe were shrinking proportionally, there may be no way to prove it.  But an interesting theory may lay hidden in the galaxies that we can see in the universe.

 Is Our Universe Shrinking?

There are two evidentiary matters that might prove that our universe is shrinking.

First.  The “smudgy” galaxies that we can see in deep space are about 12 billion years old.  The light from those galaxies, which no longer exist, has been traveling about 12 billion years to reach us.  But we have been traveling much less than the speed of light for probably the last 13 billion years, so the light from the early galaxies would have zipped past us perhaps billions of years ago. 

But this is a problem only if our universe has been constantly expanding.  What if the Big Bang, which occurred about 13.8 billion years ago, caused an early rapid expansion, perhaps even exceeding the speed of light at Planck speed.  Then as things cooled off, matter formed and slowed things down very quickly, since gravity probably is a weak force when compared with dark energy.  The early Planck expansion could have been caused by the annihilation of matter by antimatter.  Fortunately, there was about 1 extra particle of matter for every billion particles of both matter and antimatter. 

Dark matter would have maintained a constant proportionality among the surviving visible matter, while the dark energy which accounts for approximately 72% of the universe could have started a shrinking effect so that the galaxies would have bounced back toward their original source, where the Big Bang occurred.  Could time stop like scientists predict will occur at the event horizon and then reverse itself, similar to magnetic polarity reversals, so that the light from extinct galaxies could be seen again.   Admittedly, this sounds a bit preposterous;however, it does offer an interesting explanation.

Scientists believe in the “arrow of time,” following the theory of entropy, the Second Law of Thermodynamics, that indicates that the universe goes from order to disorder.  In other words, time can only travel in one direction, always leading toward higher entropy.  These scientists believe that the universe will expand until all the stars die off and everything will be dark and cold. 

However, entropy is not an ending in a closed universe (see closed universe discussion in “Closed or Open Universe” section, supra).  Entropy leads to a new beginning where a stronger force takes over.  Extinctions do not lead to an end of life, but they rather lead to new forms of life adapting to the new environment.  

Since the larger stars, through entropy, become dark matter, it is possible that all matter eventually becomes dark energy.  This process would be more like fission than fusion, as both dark matter and dark energy feed on the visible universe.  We are confident that time stops at the event horizon at the edge of a black hole, so it seems logical that time can stop and could reverse itself as a contraction process started.

There are unexplained anomalies in the microwave background radiation’s explanation of a constantly expanding universe.  For example, the quadrupole and octupole modes align with each other in both the ecliptic plane and at equinoxes, which is sometimes called the “axis of evil.”  It is important to keep an open mind on potential reversals in the space-time fabric.

Another point is that either hearing or seeing the microwave background radiation does not seem probable with a constantly expanding universe.  The speed of sound would have been too slow and the speed of light or speed of  radiation, which is about the speed of light, would have been too fast for a constant expansion speed.  In other words, the background noise of the Big Bang discovered in 1963 by Penzias and Wilson could not be heard because the speed of sound would be much less than the speed of acceleration of our galaxy and the light and radiation would have been too fast to be seen today.  However, it could be heard and seen if time had reversed itself.  The cosmic radiation that was detected in all directions should be distributed evenly under the Big Bang theory, but it is not.  There are anomalies and an unevenness which may be explained by a time reversal.       

Another theory is that time is an ellipse, rather than a straight line.  First, think of the expanding universe as being on a straight racetrack.  All the mass and energy would line up at the starting line and take off at the firing of the Big Bang, rushing toward the finish line.  The light emitted from the stars would soon be far ahead of the mass and energy hurtling away from the Big Bang’s start because the mass and energy could not maintain the speed of light after slowing down from the early Planck speed expansion.  Now, if the racetrack were oval, there might be some interesting possibilities that could account for us viewing the distant galaxies.  Instead of time reversing, it would connect with itself.  However, this theory may fail because the light from the distant stars and clusters would be seen sporadically as their light lapped our expansion point on the oval track.  So there may be no good answer as to why we see antique starlight except arguing for a contracting universe.  

Second.  And there is a second reason to believe that the universe is shrinking.  Our universe is detected to be very homogeneous and very orderly.  This could only be true if we were moving from a disorderly state to an orderly state.  In other words, this could be explained if the period of expansion were now in a period of contraction. 

The Second Law of Thermodynamics indicates that entropy acts on and within our universe.   If you recognize that an existing state is more disordered than a former state, then you can surmise that the existing state came later in time.  In a closed system, the natural course of events is to go from an orderly to a disorderly (higher entropy) state.  The Big Bang and the rapid expansion thereafter was a high entropy period.  As the expansion continued, entropy caused the universe to become very disorderly and the speed of acceleration decreased. 

The reverse is also true.  If an existing state is very orderly or homogeneous, then it is in a lower entropy state.  That is the case of our picture of the universe today.  Our universe could easily be described as similar to a living organism that has uniform connecting membranes scattered throughout its system.  It is unusually homogeneous for being a product of an explosion, scattering it in all directions.  So, is it more likely that the short period of acceleration reversed its direction and came back together, attracted by dark matter and dark energy?  This contraction could explain the current homogeneity in our universe as the matter consolidated and reformed.        

Typically, scientists would look for similar interactions between matter and energy.  So, let’s consider the conversion of matter to energy in the sun.  Currently, the amount of hydrogen in the sun is 70%, helium is 28%, and the other elements are 2%.  We know this will change as the sun converts more hydrogen into helium and eventually into heavier elements.  This percentage is eerily similar to the amount of dark energy in the universe which is 72%, dark matter is 24%, and other matter is 4%.

What if dark energy were consuming matter within our observable universe similar to the fusion activity on the sun?  If this were true, this could explain the red shift without the problematic singularity.  If galaxies were being contracted by dark energy, they would remain proportional as to each other because the decrease in size would be consistent throughout the universe, assuming a homogenous or isotropic universe which most cosmologists believe.

The sun is about 4.6 billion years old, while the universe is about 13.8 billion years old, so this makes this comparison even more interesting.  The dark energy may have been consuming matter longer than the sun has been consuming hydrogen, so it makes sense that the percentage of dark energy is so high. 

The two processes are opposites.  Dark matter would increase while hydrogen would decrease.  Think of the conversion to energy by dark matter as more like fission as compared to fusion of the sun.  Nuclear fusion and fission are two types of energy released from atomic bonds between particles in the nucleus.  The primary difference is that fission is a splitting of an atom into smaller atoms and fusion is combining two smaller atoms into a larger one.  The amount of energy needed for fission is less than that for fusion, but the energy released by fusion is higher than that for fission. 

However, we do not know that dark energy is a result of fission.  We don’t even know for certain that dark energy is energy.  We just do not know what it is.  It is like putting a jig saw puzzle together which has big pieces missing.  You cannot see the missing pieces, but you can sometimes determine what they might look like based on the openings formed by the pieces of the puzzle that you do have locked in place. 

We do know that the sun is about half way through its life.  The percentage of about 70% could be the middle point for both the sun and the universe’s contraction stage, since we believe that the last stages will consume matter exponentially in a runaway conversion to energy. 

The universe may have expanded rapidly until gravity lost out to dark energy.  The expansion period probably was for a short period as gravity was a weak force.  The expansion more than likely stopped billions of years before our sun and solar system were formed.  If this were true, we would be deep into a contraction period now, perhaps over half way through it.  However, there could be an argument that since the dark energy already is at the 72% mark, the contraction event is in its last stages.

The other elements in our sun do not include all the elements in the universe, so again it is not surprising that the other elements in the universe are 4%, while the sun only has 2%.   It would seem logical to conclude that the 24% dark matter and 4% other matter would be consumed at the same rate.  All matter in the galaxies, including the supermassive black holes in the center of galaxies, should be decreasing in size equally.  Everything within the galaxy would remain the same as to each other, except anything related to gravity.  For example, the black holes would continue to feed on other matter in the galaxies, while some galaxies would continue to merge into neighboring galaxies like Andromeda and the Milky Way.   

Coincidental or Coincident Percentages?

The percentages of the elements in the sun and the universe are strikingly similar.  Is this by a coincidental accident or is it a coincident impact on both since there are similar forces working on each?  The sun is composed of 70% hydrogen, 28% helium, and 2% of other elements.  The sun will not create all the elements until it explodes.  The universe is composed of 72% dark energy, 24% dark matter, and 4% of all other matter.   Are these percentages just a coincidence or is this further proof of homogeneity in the universe?  Is there a universal force, perhaps dark energy, which keeps everything equally balanced?

The event of changing from expansion to contraction must have occurred sometime during the 13.8 billion years.  Our solar system and earth may have been in the contraction phase since their inception.

Could there also be a parallel in the ending for the sun and the universe?  In other words, could the death of the sun as it consumes the last of its hydrogen be an example of the same fate for our universe?  If that is true, then we could visualize multiple Big Crunches and Big Bangs, alternating back and forth, much like the suns exploding in supernovas and then accumulating and being born again as stars.  This would eliminate the singularity problem in the Big Bang theory.

Closed or Open Universe

Our universe is either closed or open.  If it is closed, it has a boundary, but not necessarily a separating line or ending location.  It could be a separating event.  If it is open, it has no edges or boundaries. 

Many cosmologists believe that the universe is open and will continue its expansion forever as a result of insufficient gravitational attraction of mass to halt that expansion.  This comports with the Big Bang expansion theory.  However, cosmologists may find the closed universe theory more compelling if offered a new perspective.

The typical explanation of a closed universe is that it has boundaries just like a circle.  In a closed universe, there would be a Big Bang causing matter to expand and then dark energy would cause the universe to collapse into a Big Crunch.

 However, if the limit of our closed universe were an event, then the shape of the universe would be unlike anything we know on earth.  For example, the Big Bang could have started the expansion which could have continued on until an event when dark energy reversed this process, causing a contraction.

If our universe were expanding forever into deep space, sometimes called the “Big Freeze,” then we would be living in an open universe.  Is there any evidence proving that this is a closed universe since that seems to be a minority opinion? 

Well, there might be six arguments that favor a closed system. 

1.      1.  There are clear boundaries between the macroworld of gravity and the microworld of quantum mechanics.  Boundaries between these two universes are obvious because the laws of gravity do not apply in the quantum world.  And demarcation lines prove closures exist. 

2.     2.  The Big Bang theory proves that our universe broke out of a shell as if it broke through a boundary and popped into a closed universe.  We should not expect to see beyond the Big Bang because it probably is not in our universe.  The “Big Freeze” theory does not make sense since our universe is expanding at increasing speeds.  Clearly, if our universe were headed out into an infinite open space, it would be slowing down.  Also if you believe that dark energy is pulling both visible matter and dark matter out into voids of empty space away from where matter is located, then it would be logical for dark energy to be located outside of the inner orbiting sphere of matter.  Then there would be some evidence of stretching of matter located where galaxies are traveling about 90% of the speed of light, which would be assumed to be the outer edge of the sphere of matter.  Scientists have not found that to be true.  The maps of the universe seem to show filaments, super clusters, clusters, and galaxies pretty uniformly positioned throughout the sphere of matter.

1.      3.  If we were in an open system, it is unlikely we would be able to view ancient galaxies since the light from those systems would have sped past us billions of years ago.  We would only be able to see a few galaxies like Andromeda, which is speeding toward us.  The speed of light from those old galaxies would be faster than the speed of acceleration.  However, we do see ancient galaxies, which may be explained by a current contraction within our universe so that we are headed back in time to those old events.  When we can actually see the Big Bang, this probably will not be a good thing.

It seems more likely that dark energy is a force pulling all matter inside itself.  The map of the sphere of matter would look the same and remain proportionally the same, since dark matter would hold it together.  Interestingly, the outermost solar systems in galaxies are moving around the center of the galaxies at the same speed as the inner systems.  We would expect the systems near the edge of the galaxy to slow down since the gravitational attraction of the super-massive black holes in the center of the galaxies would decrease.  Dark matter probably is the glue holding galaxies and clusters and filaments together throughout the universe, keeping them proportional as to each other.  Dark matter is also evidence of a closed system that keeps all matter inside the system. 

3.     4.  There is an invisible order in our universe, which would not exist in an open system.  It could be dark energy or the original imprint from the creation of the galaxy, but for the purposes of our argument, it doesn’t matter what you call it.  We just know that it exists.  The dark energy could be shrinking matter at increasing speeds.  If the dark energy were pushing everything away from it, the outer galaxies would be slowing down.  They are actually speeding up.  So it is logical that dark energy is causing a contraction of the universe.  This would also be evidence of a closed system that alternates back and forth between the Big Bang and the Big Crunch.

4.    5.  In an open system, entropy would be the rule as everything slowed down, failed, disintegrated, and came to a final, frozen end.  In a closed system, there would be an order and design imprinted on galaxies and everything else in the universe.  Of course, entropy also exists in a closed universe, but it is offset by order and design, so that a perpetual system of alternations between the Big Bang and Big Crunch would work very well in a closed system.

      6.  Neither hearing nor seeing the microwave background radiation (MBR) seems probable with a constantly expanding universe, heading out into an open universe.  The microwave radiation appears to be spread out everywhere, which only makes sense with a closed universe.  The radiation, which comes close to the speed of light, would have surpassed the speed of acceleration, leaving all matter from the Big Bang far behind in an open universe.  Only a closed universe would permit the MBR to saturate the universe.  And only a reversal within the space-time fabric would allow the MBR to be heard and seen again.    


 Conservation of Matter and Energy

In a closed universe, there is a law called conservation of matter (mass) and energy, which means that all matter and energy within our universe can neither be created nor destroyed.  Matter may be converted to energy and energy may transform into matter, but the total amount of matter and energy in our universe would remain constant.

This transformation from one form to another may be the mechanism that allows our universe to run infinitely.  We understand that a circle is representative of a form that permits an infinite pattern of repetition.  Think of our closed universe as like a balloon expanding to a point and then contracting back again in a perpetual motion machine for our universe.  It is quite possible that dark energy in our universe is increasing in strength as more matter may be turning into this strange form.  Mathematical formulas indicate that this poorly understood force currently accounts for about 72% of our universe and it may be increasing.

If dark energy were able to convert matter into itself, we might expect that the matter within our universe (solar systems, galaxies, clusters, filaments, clouds of interstellar dust, and dark matter) could be shrinking.  If the downsizing of matter is consistent, then galaxies would appear to be pulling away from each other.  The only exceptions would be the galaxies that are so close to each other that gravity of matter would control their movement, drawing them together.

The red shift discussed above proves exactly that.  Gravity only impacts those galaxies that are in proximity to each other.  Dark energy may be converting mass to energy, and as the dark energy is enhanced, the shrinkage of matter would increase.

Are Shrinking Galaxies Remaining Proportional?

The galaxies and clusters may remain proportionate to each other since dark matter holds them together at the same proportion.  Dark matter may consistently cement all other matter throughout our observable universe.  The shrinking of galaxies would look like the galaxies were racing away from each other toward a larger gravitational force.  Is there any evidence that galaxies are remaining proportionally the same?  There may be. 

Let’s examine the Milky Way galaxy.  Based on our understanding of the theory of gravity, the outer stars of our galaxy should be moving more slowly as their speeds would be decelerating.  That’s not happening.  The stars on the outside rim of the galaxy are moving just as fast as the inner stars.  This does not comport with our understanding of gravity.  This appears to be pretty good evidence that the mass of our Milky Way is locked into the same configuration, proportion, and speed.

Runaway Deflation

If the dark energy is exerting this force, reducing the size of matter as it gobbles it up, the galaxies will be racing away from each other because they could be decreasing in size at an increasing rate.  This shrinking effect could accelerate as dark energy became more prominent in our universe.  In Einstein’s formula (E=mc squared) a kilogram of mass is converted to 299,792,458 squared joules of energy.  If all the mass in our existing universe is being converted to energy, the amount of energy produced would become so astronomical that at some point, there would probably be runaway conversion.  In other words, the acceleration of our shrinking mass in the universe would increase exponentially.


There is much that we do not know and perhaps never will.  Most of the universe is invisible to us, and even if it were visible, we probably still would not understand it.  But the law of conservation of matter and energy seems to be a solid law with no exceptions in a closed universe.  That is why it is critical for cosmologists and other scientists to think outside the box.  Even though the theory of a shrinking universe cannot be proven, it cannot be disproven either.  It should be considered as a mainstream theory along with the expansion theory.


When we are born, the umbilical cord is severed and we are cut off from our mother.  We are set adrift in a new environment without the protection of the warm womb and the life-giving fluids from our mother.  We still are cradled in the loving arms of our fathers and mothers, but as we get older, we travel into the worldly world all alone.  Our thoughts belong to us and we are alone.

We find many friends along the way, some of whom lead us astray.  Peer pressure is difficult to overcome.  Again, the worldly world tempts us to travel down dark alleys without street lights to help show us the better path.  Once we return to the streets that are well lit, we may find a spouse and children and family.  However, something is still missing.  It is the missing link.

That link is to God.  Without understanding this link, you will not be able to unite with God.  In John 15, Jesus tells the parable of the vine and the branches.  He describes God as the gardener who cuts off branches from the vine if they produce no fruit.  He said that no branch can bear fruit by itself.  It must remain connected to the vine.  Jesus stated, “I am the vine; you are the branches.  If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.  John 15:5.  God is in Jesus and can be in you through Jesus and the Holy Spirit.  Jesus said, “…I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.”  John 14:20.

When you are linked to God through Jesus and the Holy Spirit, you are one with God.  You and the Trinity are unified.  Before the creation of our worldly world, Jesus and God were one.  John 17:5.  God created our universe, which is probably closed, from outside the boundary of our world.  God and Jesus have always been united even prior to the creation.  At some point, God decided that humans needed Jesus to bring them the truth.  In effect, Jesus was separated from God in order to bring the Good News and salvation.  Then Jesus was united with God again after His resurrection.

Only by believing in Jesus can we become one with God.  Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.”  John 14:6.  This all makes sense if you think about it.  When we die, our thoughts will still be with us, but without our senses to project the old reality.  The new reality of the afterlife will depend entirely on whether you are one with God or not.  If you are not with God, you will be lost in chaos as your thoughts will tumble over the rim of a dark chasm.  Since Jesus was human, we will be more relaxed in His initial presence.  Who knows what our imaginations would expect God to be like.  The Old Testament portrayed God in a manner that might scare one into not allowing Him to enter their thoughts, while Jesus, who was very compassionate in the New Testament, would be easy to accept into our spirits.

Uniting with Jesus and God will bring them into your thoughts, guiding you along a narrow path through the dark void surrounding you.  There will be judgments ahead, but this will, at least, get you past the first hurdle of the afterlife.     

Life Cycle

1.    1. Immature Individual Selfishness

2.    2. Mature Individual/Family Selfishness

3.    3. Doubting of Descartes

4.    4. Social Acceptance

5.     5. Hegelian Religion

6.     6. Kierkegaard’s Beyond Faith

7.     7. Individual Virtue


There are seven basic steps that are available to take during our life cycle.  They are not mandatory for any particular development in life, but it is possible that a person could progress through all seven steps and reach a pinnacle that is closest to God, preparing for an afterlife.  Skipping some of these steps would not hinder your reaching the top of that mountain, step seven, but it might eliminate some of the experiences which would enlighten you, making you better prepared and focused for the final tests.

I call these seven steps a life cycle because if you fail the final tests, you might have to go back through the cycle again, assuming we are in a closed universe where everything is recycled.  What tests am I talking about?  The Bible is very clear about judgments that will occur.  For every choice made during life, there are consequences awaiting somewhere in the future:  in your life and/or afterlife.  There may be tests administered by God in the afterlife, as well.  The above Life Cycle is important to prepare you for making better choices during life and the afterlife.  By reaching step seven, you should be ready for whatever comes your way.  You should be prepared.


Step One.  Immature Individual Selfishness.

This is when an individual focuses on him or herself, typically in childhood, and demands everything that they want, no matter what the consequences to others.  As children mature, they may still think of themselves as the most important person in the world.  These spoiled children may turn into spoiled adults, but generally the experiences of the world make them change at some point and recognize the needs of others are also important.


Step Two.  Mature Individual/Family Selfishness.

This stage can evolve from the first step into a selfish desire to satisfy adult individual or family needs at the expense of others.  The greedy corporate executives and politicians make as much money as they can without feeling guilty about how it was done and who it hurt.  They may rationalize that they are doing this for their family, but this is the same mentality as you find in the Mafia families.


Step Three.  Doubting of Descartes.

This phase can occur in high school, college, or anytime you start thinking about things besides yourself.  You may start to doubt that you were on the right path when you were satisfying your every need without a conscience.  The doubting can actually come from the rising of the conscience from deep within you. 

Rene Descartes, a French philosopher and mathematician referred to as The Father of Modern Philosophy, started with a basic principal as the foundation for philosophy:  “I think, therefore I am.”  In other words, Descartes believed that his thoughts were the only thing that he knew existed. 

His senses could easily deceive him, so he did not rely on them.  He knew that he was thinking because even if he doubted that he was thinking, that would prove that he was, indeed, thinking.  Since experiences from the senses would not serve him, he relied on his thoughts and doubted everything else until he could prove it.  He was also Father of Subjective Thinking, emphasizing that things were known through deduction, a priori.

God is known by inference as our Creator since there is no physical evidence of His existence.  God is known a priori, not a posteriori.
Descartes is the philosopher who created this manner of thinking.


Step Four.  Social Acceptance.

Social acceptance is important to a great majority of people.  Being accepted by your peers, your family, your neighbors, your community members, your friends, etc. is extremely important.  Very few people choose to live alone and cut themselves off from everybody.  If you want to be accepted in society, you typically must conform to the prevailing standards and laws of the land.  Misfits of society are found on Post Office walls in wanted posters.  These individuals decided not to conform for whatever reason.  Sometimes it was because they were still in either stages one or two, attempting to obtain money without worrying about consequences to others.


Step Five.  Hegelian Religion.

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, a German philosopher, who believed that every idea had to be related to other ideas or those ideas were meaningless.  We can think of something only by relating it to the qualities of something else.  Hegel’s writings were very comprehensive and difficult to understand.  But he believed that everything he thought led to the opposite thought.  The knowledge of opposites unifies them into one.  Thesis, antithesis, and synthesis lead to reality.  This comes very close to Aristotle’s “golden mean.”  For example, the opposite of individualism might be considered conforming for the common good.  A synthesis of these two might be found in politics that unifies the stimulation from individuals with a government like democracy that accepts and includes individualism in its governance. 

Hegel’s religion straddles the two extremes of good and evil, as well.  The opposites that we experience through our senses must be synthesized for religion to be successful.  In other words, we must have a faith that transcends the daily battle between two moral extremes, generally dictated by political and religious leaders.  This faith leads to a peaceful and moderate approach.  The Hegelian religion recognizes God as the system of relationships in which all things have their being and significance.  The design of God’s world is very real when your reasoning is based on a rational and reasonable faith.


Step Six.  Kierkegaard’s Beyond Faith.

Soren Kierkegaard, a Danish philosopher known as the Father of Existentialism, was one of the few Christian existentialists.  Kierkegaard departed from Hegelian faith to go beyond that faith.  His reasoning was radical and departed from a moderate course.  He did not require that we prove that God exists, since that was impossible.  Instead, he focused on preparing for God through faith on steroids.  Kierkegaard wanted Christians to swim in deep waters without having one foot touching the bottom.  Forget the senses.  His faith had to go beyond Hegel’s reasonable faith. 

He started by emphasizing the individual’s responsibility and integrity.  Kierkegaard’s individual was the singular entity that would come face-to-face, one-on-one with God.  There would be no family, friends, or ministers who would intercede and support that entity.  You were on your own.  It would be entirely between you and God.  Again, forget your senses.  They would be irrelevant.  Kierkegaard went beyond the “I” of Descartes and reached into the depths of choices and consequences.  He also passed over social acceptance.  In order for you to analyze yourself as this individual, you must avoid the distractions around you and isolate yourself from the crowd.  Only when you are alone, away from societal influences, can you examine your faith. 

In your self-examination, you must ask if you are ready for the leap of faith, which goes beyond faith.  If God asked you to sacrifice your son to Him like He did with Abraham, could you do it?  This is a leap that you probably had not considered since it involves committing a crime.  Imagine explaining to the police that you murdered your son because God told you to do it.  Abraham made that leap of faith, believing that God would resurrect his son, Isaac, in some manner even if he killed him.  Would you make that leap?  That’s the kind of faith that Kierkegaard believed in, distancing himself from Hegel.


Step Seven.  Individual Virtue.

Individual virtue is the ultimate step toward reaching God.  The Bible references both faith and works as being important in God’s judgments.  Even though Kierkegaard is concerned about choices and consequences, he does not show the nexus of works to God’s judgments.  Individual virtue is the combination of Kierkegaard’s ultimate faith with your lifestyle and actions modeled as closely to Jesus as possible.  All your works, all your thoughts, everything that is part and parcel of you must be improved upon each day.  If you move half-way closer to being like Jesus every day, you will never be like Jesus, but you will improve every day and get closer to that goal.  You, in effect, will be attempting to conform to Jesus.  Conformity is a virtue with God at this stage. 

Individual virtue will be guided by your conscience and the Holy Spirit.  As Jesus taught in the Beatitudes, even your thoughts must be cleansed.  When you stand before God, just like Kierkegaard envisioned as being “one-on-one,” your thoughts must be pure.  God will be within you, so your thoughts will also be His.  If you have hopes of passing His test, your thoughts must conform to His. 

If you are lucky, you will pass His tests and God may allow you to exercise your creativity and individualism on a small scale in His universe, where creation can only occur.  However, a small scale in God’s eternal universe would be unimaginable in ours.  Many scientists believe our universe is closed, making time (past, present, and future) an infinite cycle.  The Creator’s universe, where time does not exist, is outside the boundaries of our universe.  Even though we can imagine infinity, we cannot comprehend God’s eternity.  We have nothing to compare it to, so we will have to prepare for it, not knowing exactly what it is.  But we can infer that God will allow us to try our hand at individual creativity if we are fortunate enough to be accepted into His kingdom.         

This life cycle is like sound or ocean waves, alternating back and forth, creating a ripple effect.  The cycles run between: (1) independence and conformity and (2) reasonable and radical, which can be repeated as we attempt to understand why we exist.  We may start out being a selfish, independent individual wanting his or her own way, but then, as we get older, justifying this selfishness as being done for your family.   When we start to question everything, we trigger cycles.  We may find wisdom in conforming to society, and then return to an earlier cycle when greed and ambition take control of your life.  You may see the value in having a reasonable faith in God, conforming to a group’s beliefs; while some embrace an extreme radical faith, which rejects church groups and leaders in favor of an individualistic approach to religion.  In the final cycle, you must conform to God’s way, perhaps allowing us to return to creative independence in God’s universe. 

Believe me; you will have no chance in God’s world if you do not rely on God.  I think, therefore God exists and He is within me.  If my thoughts are distilled, we will be unified as one, and He will lead my spirit to His kingdom. 



Big O’s in gOd

There are five big O’s in gOd:  (1) Omnipresence, (2) Omnipotence, (3) Omniscience, (4) Omnificent, and (5) Omnifarious.

Omnipresence means that God is everywhere, including inside you.  God is unlimited and as the Creator of the universe is within the entire universe, in both the macroworld and the microworld.

Omnipotence means that God is all powerful and will provide judgments as the consequences for our free will that He gave us.  Our choices made during life and afterlife will be evaluated and judged.

Omniscience means that God knows all things.  God knows our thoughts, our deeds, and our past, present, and future.  God knows everything about what we did, what we are doing, and what we will be doing.  Some argue that there is no free will since God already knows what we will do, but that is not correct.  We make the choices in life and afterlife based on our free will.  Just because God knows in advance what our choices will be, does not mean that we did not make those choices on our own.  God did not make us decide one way or the other.  That was our choice.  God just knew what it was going to be in advance because He knows everything.

Omnificent means that God has unlimited creative powers.  This allows the Creator to create whatever He wishes.  Of course, the creation occurred outside our sight and outside our closed universe in God’s world.  That does not mean that God is not everywhere in our universe;  it just means that God created outside our universe.  Matter and energy can neither be created nor destroyed in our closed universe.

Omnifarious means that God is unlimited in His forms.  We know He appeared to us in human form as Jesus and also is within us as the Holy Spirit.  Although, we, as humans, have difficulty understanding this concept, God can appear to us or in us in many forms.

These five big O’s in gOd are helpful in understanding God and in accepting Him within us and including Him in our thoughts during life and afterlife.

Is Our Dollar Being Stretched Thin?

On October 25, 2013, Forbes examined the strength of the American dollar, which currently is the primary world reserve currency.  It included the following chart, showing the dollar in green with about 60% of the reserves with the euro in red running a distant second at about 20% and the British pound sterling in blue coming in third with about 3% and the Japanese yen in purple not far behind.  The Chinese yuan is listed as “other” right now, but is becoming more important.

Just a few decades ago, the British pound sterling was the primary world currency and held that honor for about 200 years before it had a runaway deficit budget with the Labour party pushing high budget spending.  Unfortunately, this sounds a lot like what is going on the United States today.  

China is one of the countries looking for our dollar to be replaced as the world reserve currency. Liu Chang with China’s official news agency wrote: “. . . it is perhaps a good time for the befuddled world to start considering building a de-Americanized world.”

America’s budget and debt ceiling crises and the 2011 credit rating downgrade have created doubts about the strength of the dollar.  The quantitative easing of printing more dollars to pay our debts is disconcerting to the international community.  The current political environment is not conducive to making substantial cuts in our budget or to reducing our debt.  Let’s just “kick the can down the road” until it drops over the cliff.  The cliff is inevitable.  It’s just a matter of when we will run out of road.

What is a reserve currency?  The reserve currency consists of primary contributing monetary systems that are designed to provide stability for markets and currency throughout the world.  For example if a country were in financial difficulty, international speculators could sell their holdings of that country’s currency, thus depressing the value of that currency.  The country could allow the exchange rate for the currency to fall, but this would not be its first choice because it would make imports more expensive for that country.  However if that country had stable foreign currency reserves, speculators would not be interested.  In 1997-1998, a financial disaster was avoided since many countries had reserves of foreign currencies.  Most countries today protect themselves with extensive foreign exchange reserves.

The American dollar is still on top, but this may be changing much like a mud slide as water saturates the foundation of the soil until the weight carries the earth downhill.  One of the strengths of the dollar was “liquidity” in being able to be sold quickly.  As America’s financial structure shows weaknesses, the liquidity is more in question.  Also, the dollar is starting to lose its value because of the qualitative easing.  Printing more money is bound to devalue the existing dollars.  Other countries may start to obtain their reserves in other assets.  There are already agreements between China and South Korea to utilize their own currencies.  There even could be some ideological and political reasons why countries like Russia would want to convert to a different currency standard.

China’s renminbi could make significant strides toward obtaining a higher percentage of the world reserves, due partly to China’s huge economy.  The extensive foreign exchange controls by the government may make this currency look more dependable and stable than America’s dollar mismanaged by a “do nothing” Congress.

Countries have been increasing their total reserves at a strong pace. In the past decade, world reserves have quadrupled. With that growth rate, countries could greatly increase non-dollar reserves without having to sell any greenbacks.

About 30% of America’s debt is owned by foreign countries included in their currency reserves.  Our interest rates remain low because other countries are purchasing treasury bonds.  However, we are noting financial cracks that are exposing inflationary pressures within our country.  Of course, the way to offset the inflation is to increase interest rates.  Our countries may also increase prices for their imports.  Since our imports far exceed our exports, we would get hammered with this inflationary trend with an even larger trade deficit.  The current political response of printing more money will simply exacerbate the inflationary problem by increasing our money supply.  The dollar will be in the same position that the British pound was in years ago.  But who will bail us out? 

There are many distractions that have nothing to do with this issue.  For example, oil being priced in dollars is irrelevant because you can purchase oil in any currency.  Traders accept any currency at the appropriate exchange rate or you can have your bank covert to any currency.

It is very important that we focus on the real issues and avoid the distractions thrown up by politicians and the media, who do not have your best interests at heart.  There probably is a tipping point on the printing of money and running up a deficit, where we will have gone too far with no way to survive the impending disaster.  But it is incumbent on Americans to push their Congressmen to do the right thing by protecting the stability of our dollar by stopping the quantitative easing and by living within our budget.  If your Congressman cannot do this, then do not vote for them.

Is God Real or Is It Only You Thinking He is Real?

If believers die and are thinking that God is within them, how do they know that it really is Him?  Couldn’t it also be that believers are just thinking that God is within them?  In other words, is God just in their imagination or is He real?  And if it is just in your thoughts, how would you know?

Well, the answer may surprise you.  It does not really matter.  God is within you either way.  If you believe God is within you only in your mind, He still will be within you.  And if you truly believe God is within you, he will be within you in reality.  There actually is no difference.  The only difference is the degree of faith.  If you are only pretending to think about God to obtain a reward in heaven, you have no true belief.  But if God enters your thoughts at death, He is very real.  The strength of your faith will determine how long He stays.  The strength of your works will determine how long you stay.

In Luke 17:21, Jesus said, “…the kingdom of God is within you.”  This is one of His most important statements.  My interpretation is that the kingdom is spiritual and internal.  We are very familiar with reality in the external universe, but we know very little about reality in the internal universe.  We have our six senses[1] that provide us data on the external reality.  We have only our thoughts to examine internal reality.  So, when we say that God is within our thoughts, then He is very real in the internal universe.

I was very fortunate to receive a message from Jesus one time.  The message was provided in my mind, not a voice from above.  But I am quite certain that it wasn’t me providing the answer to my own question, because it was not an answer I would have given.  My wife and I had been studying the Bible, and we were both struck with how strong the verses proclaimed that “works” were extremely important in God’s judgment.  We knew that many Christians believed that if you confessed your sins and accepted Jesus as your savior, then you were immediately saved and you would enter heaven.  I asked Jesus to explain “works” to me as I prayed one night.  He said, “It’s in the Bible.”

Like I said, I was surprised at the answer.  After giving it some thought, I came to believe that He had a dual meaning: (1) if I read the Bible, I would find that works were clearly required, and (2) I was not entitled to a definition, but had to work for it.  Many Christians believe that they are entitled to heaven once they claim belief.  I am not so sure.  Works may be required to prove that you truly believe in Jesus and God.  It really does not matter how works are weighed in God’s judgment, the point is that they are extremely important if you want to enter God’s kingdom.  Faith, by itself, is not enough.  Works are also required.

I understand the reasoning why preachers do not want to address this issue.  They might lose many from their congregation if they explained the complexity of Judgment Day.  Especially, in today’s world when everybody is looking for simplicity, a “free lunch,” and entitlements.  Another reason might be that religious teachers do not want their followers to think too much or to be too anxious at the point of death.  In other words, your thoughts upon death should not be cluttered with regret for your sins or concern whether your works had met God’s “pass-fail” grade.  You should be relaxed in order for Jesus to lead you to heaven without any worry about consequences from your past activities.

Once you believe in Jesus as your savior, you need to produce fruit or do good works.  There are many versus in the Bible, referencing “works” that are required to enter God’s kingdom.  The Book of James may be the best source if you want to read more about it.  Another way of describing “works” is choices that are made during life and in the afterlife.  All these choices have consequences.

Soren Kierkegaard, the father of Christian existentialism, wrote, “Consequently the seeking and finding of the kingdom of heaven was the first thing to be resolved….  Kierkegaard followed up with, “One must first learn to know oneself before knowing anything else.  Not until a person has inwardly understood himself and then sees the course he is to take does his life gain peace and meaning…”  Kierkegaard concluded, “Philosophy is perfectly right in saying that life must be understood backward.  But then one forgets the other clause – that it must be lived forward.”  The Essential Kierkegaard, “Selected Early Entries from Kierkegaard’s Journals and Papers, pp 9-12.

Backing into the kingdom of heaven by inwardly understanding yourself is the key.  You certainly will not understand the kingdom through your experiences, playing life forward.  But by going directly to the end game, reaching for God’s kingdom through your spiritual awakening, you have a better chance of understanding the afterlife.  Then, armed with your newly found understanding of the kingdom, you need to structure your life to do good works leading to that kingdom.

So, the final judgment day will employ a difficult test as both your faith and works are combined and examined.  You can pretend that you have a “Get out of Jail Free” card based on when you accepted Jesus as your savior twenty years ago, but God knows each and every sin that you have committed over that time.  Perhaps, a certain amount of sins could be forgiven because we are “miserable wretches,” but at some point, God knows that you were not a true believer.  You may be tossed into hell as a miserable wretch who lied to himself when he professed to be a believer.

God knows what you are thinking because He is within you.  And you will know what He is thinking because He is within you.  You are unified and become one with God.  God is just as real as you are in the internal universe.

If death means only that we continue thinking, believing in God will give you something to hold onto, in what otherwise might be a dark, chaotic world.  I remember wondering if I just believed in God to have something to hold onto, if that would work.  The answer is that it does work.  Your thoughts filled with God for whatever reason are sufficient for initial control of the chaos.  The real question is whether you can sustain that faith?  Only a powerful belief in God with mighty works can survive the tests of Judgment Day.  Some believers consider works to be only important during their lives, but works can be and probably are in the afterlife.  What better way to test your mettle?

[1] There is no physical evidence of a sixth sense, which could be defined as perception or intuition. However, it is the missing piece that seamlessly integrates information and reality.  Without the sixth sense, the data received by the other five senses would not be linked with reality.   The connecting mechanism is unknown, but there is something that assimilates the data and perceives what we call reality.  It does not matter if it really is reality or not.  It is our perception of reality, which is critical to our peace of mind.  This sixth sense is best understood when applied to religion.  There is no way we could ever find enough data to prove God, primarily because He created outside our universe.  But our sixth sense takes the data from the other five senses and perceives that something had to create all this.  Creation of something from nothing is not possible in a closed universe.  The sixth sense, a priori, makes the connection to a Creator.  We are constantly receiving information, so the sixth sense must be the missing link between our interactions with the information world and the physical world we call reality.  Even if we lose our other five senses when we die, we may still have the sixth sense, which we may have to rely on to construct a new reality.