What is Human Nature?

To answer that question it is useful to look at what our modern understanding of humans is:

Our modern understanding is that humans are made of three very different things. Each of these things is of a different type, yet each has multiple levels of interaction with each of the others.

At the bottom level we are bodies.
These bodies can be thought of as "gene machines", the result of about 4 billion years of evolution.
Bodies have many levels of complexity.
Bodies give us all of our direct means of connecting to external reality.
They give us brains, in which the other two layers exist.
They give us eyes, ears, skin, nostrils, mouth, though which we see, hear, touch, smell and taste.
They give us many drives, hunger for food, breathing, sexual drives, social drives and many many more.
Brains have many separate processors, and capabilities.

At the second level we are cultural beings or "meme machines".
At this level we are the product of the evolution of behaviours and ideas over thousands of generations.
Each of our physical bodies is born into a specific place, and specific communities, and from our interaction with people and place we learn "culture" in the widest sense.
In this sense culture includes all behaviours, world views, languages, etc that we learn by imitation or instruction.
We all require a culture, most specifically we require the language that our culture gives us, for without language the third part of us could not begin.
As with bodies, there are many levels to culture.

At the third level we are self declared self awarenesses.
At this level we are beings of pure software.
Yes we experience the sensations of body and culture, and can feedback to both, and we are not either.
Once language gets to the point that it has a distinction for right/wrong or good/bad then something new becomes possible.
Once a brain has such a distinction (a simple two state valuation system), then it is only a matter of time until circumstances arise where the brain is forced by the rules it has learned to declare itself bad or wrong.
That is a problem.
To solve that problem the brain makes a declaration in language.
It says something like "being x wasn't good enough so I am going to be y".
Think about that for a moment.
What x and y are will be specific to each of us, and the form is almost always the same.
Something just declared itself to be something other than what it was.
That isn't possible.
Yet it did it.
Each and every one of us does it.
What this does, is create a new entity.
The new entity exists in language, in culture, in a brain, in a body, in some particular place.
That new entity doesn't know what it is.
It has a body.
It has a culture.
It can think and do things independently.
At this level, we are infinitely creative, infinitely powerful beings; capable of being first cause in the universe.
We must each progress from nothing through levels of development.
We start completely self centered.
Then we learn to relate to family and place.
Then we raise our consciousness to tribe and district.
Most people raise their awareness to the level of nation.
Some people get to see that all humanity is the same.
Some get to see that all life is related.
Some get to see that everything in the universe is related in many complex ways.
Some get to see that they can be the change.
Some see that they can have it all, and give it all to everyone else, and not be diminished.

For many this set of answers will raise more questions than it solves.
To those I say yes, I am aware of this, and I am also aware that there is no end to any such series of questions. They are essentially open.
And, having said that, there are a couple more key concepts that are required.

One of the major questions of philosophy has been, what is the nature of what Kant called pure practical reason?
What is the source of intuition?
What is it that poets call heart?
Are these all just different views of the same thing?

The answer to these questions is a very recent invention.
We can now clearly demonstrate that these phenomena are all a result of the storage and retrieval of information as interference patterns.
This can best be visualised with reference to holograms, which are optical interference patterns.
What it leads to, is that simply by storing and retrieving information as an interference pattern, then associations are formed or found.
This power of association is what underlies every level of intuition within the human brain.
Malcolm Gladwell in his book "Blink" gives many examples of the power of the process, without knowing what the process is or how it works.

The next concept I will introduce here is one that comes from logic.
If one investigates a sequence of causally related events, then one finds a chain.
For most events the chain of causality breaks at the "big bang".
However, that cannot be the only place it breaks.
If the idea of moral responsibility has any meaning at all, then we humans must be able to break the chain, in some fashion. If that were not the case, then all moral theory is bankrupt, and we are simply automata playing out chains of conditions that were set at the beginning of time.
I do not believe that to be the case, and my experience provides me ample evidence for this belief - and it is my experience, not yours.
What we can say from logic, is that, if an entity is capable of being first cause in reality, then what must precede this first cause is nothing.
Nothing as in a blank canvas, as in infinite potential.

It is my contention that our pure software minds have access, in the infinite realm of knowledge, to the possibility of nothing.
It is from this source, via the mechanism of holographic association (association via storage and retrieval of information as an interference pattern), that we are each potentially infinitely powerful, infinitely creative, entities.
It is in this sense, that the only things limiting us are the declarations we make about ourselves.
Perhaps it is time that each and every one of us spent some significant effort re-examining those declarations, in the full light of this knowledge, and see what seems obvious and intuitive to us in this light.
I invite everyone to do so.
I invite you to trust yourself.
I invite you to put in the discipline to do the study. It may take many years to get to this place, and every step on the journey can have its own rewards.

From this place, there does not appear to be any end to the journey.

There is room for an infinite number of individuals to take infinitely different paths, and for there still to be infinite areas of knowledge space unexplored.

Contemplate that for a bit.

Perhaps it is time to practice tolerance.
Perhaps infinite tolerance.
Perhaps "I don't know" is the most powerful statement we can make.
At least in the sense, that it gives and comes from infinite nothing.

So perhaps, every human being has the potential to become an infinitely creative infinitely loving being.
Perhaps there are an infinite number of possible ways to get to that point, just as there are an infinite possible number of ways not to get there.

Perhaps love, compassion and tolerance are appropriate responses to most of life's experiences.

It seems to me that creating an environment where every individual has a real chance of getting this is the greatest endeavour any of us can align with.

The project described in this website is my best effort at creating such a thing.

I ask you to choose to join me.

If you truly choose, then the only reason you can give when asked why, is "because I chose to".

Your choice!

Ted Howard, Founder
1 Maui St, Kaikoura, New Zealand