It's very good! There are so many cool ideas running through it, we'd be here for days. Among them (simplified blah blah):
- everything is a holon; that is, a whole and a part of some other whole
- holons are arranged in a hierarchy: atoms make molecules, molecules make cells, cells make humans, etc
- things that are higher up in the hierarchy are more "conscious"- frogs more than worms, worms more than dirt, humans more than apes, etc
- there are 4 quadrants of ... the universe... interior/exterior and single/collective. So say there's a newborn baby who has a brain that cannot tell the difference between what is itself and what is not itself. Exterior/singularly, we can talk about what bits of brain and neurons it has. But you could study all the neurons all day and not understand what it means to that baby. Interior/singularly, the baby has certain emotions along with that. (like examining a computer program's code, and what it's doing to the memory and disk etc, vs talking about what the program is actually doing in a meaningful sense) Similarly, there are collective sides to both things: what happens when a bunch of babies have a bunch of brains like this, and what does that mean?
- you can call these quadrants "I", "We", "It", and "Its". (or you can lump it and its together and just call them together "it". It's external, objective reality.)
- society has, since the Enlightenment/Age of Reason just forgotten about "I" and "we" and focused only on "it". The brain and neurons is all there is; don't worry about what that means to the person who's experiencing it. This is a problem.
- personal mental and spiritual development are the same, along a spectrum. You go through these stages as a kid: distinguishing between you and not-you, becoming able to imagine what it's like to be other people, focusing on first only yourself, then on other people in your group, then on all people worldwide, and then if you keep climbing this ladder you'll hit a few states that we today would call "spiritual"... where you focus on all of nature, and eventually on the non-duality of everything.
These are all cool, especially the last! But it's a lot to take in. Two questions:
1. How do I remember it, how do I make sure it doesn't just linger in my mind for a week or a year and then disappear, leaving me back where I've started? This is frustrating; it seems like, to get better at these things, I'd have to study them as if a class at school. But I have a full-time job and thus not much energy to "take a class" too.
2. Should I even remember it? Is he right? Is this book just a bunch of nonsense? This is even more frustrating. Of course, I google it and the first things that come up are a few critiques. It's like figuring out the truth in law or politics or computer science or anything else! Gah!
I answer myself: don't worry about it, take a step back, chill out. But that seems to be my response to everything these days, which leads to nothing ever changing. And maybe I'll spontaneously Get Enlightened someday at this rate, but I don't think so.
Boy, it'd be nice if, y'know, understanding the universe, true happiness, enlightenment were easy, eh?