“Woo woo” is a term that rationalists and scientists use, condescendingly, to refer to any beliefs or practices that cannot be seen with the eye or proven by science. Depending on who you talk to, “woo woo” might include spirituality, meditation, tarot cards, alchemy, chanting, dancing, loving, divining or a host of other “mystical” or “esoteric” forms of study.
Many of these “woo woo” concepts and philosophies have been relinquished to the dustbin of history by “leading scientists” or at least that is the impression offered to the average person.
“Real science” and therefore “real knowledge” is supposedly accomplished using a microscope or other high tech equipment. This equipment is of course unavailable to the average person and so we have few opportunities to participate in the realizations that scientists have supposedly made. What is clear, is that “spiritual beliefs” have no place in the material world of hard science and have therefore been discarded as heresy by the academic establishment.
So, why bother studying any sort of esoteric or “spiritual” principles, ideas, techniques, or modalities? Well, for starters, modern science has actually come a long way in terms of “proving” the subjectivity of our Universe. Subjectivity means that the material world can be influenced by our thoughts and beliefs, and modern science, via quantum physics, has indeed proven that consciousness affects reality.
While science has begun to accept a level of subjectivity or “creative” aspect pervasive in human consciousness, where science often falls short is in its explanation of these realizations. Science explains our creative human potential using scientific jargon, mathematical concepts, and language that is practically meaningless to the average person. Most scientific research documents have no real bearing on our understanding of who we are as individuals, what our world is all about, and what power we have as individuals to influence that world.
Old science convinced us that our minds alone have NO power to influence the material world, for the material world was deemed to be of a certain structure that would make it impossible, for example, for a group of people to do a chant and a dance and cause it to rain.
However, modern scientists, based on their current understanding of the universe, may not necessarily reject the idea that a group of people could do a certain chant and dance and cause it to rain. Certainly, the ancients believed and understood their capacity to alter the weather, heal disease, and otherwise perform small (or large) miracles.
The chief objection that a hard, rational scientist might have against any sort of esoteric technique for altering our material condition using the power of our will, for example, is that it cannot be repeated as regularly and predictably as science would like. But just because something isn’t regular and predictable doesn’t mean it does not work or is not real. Indeed, the human experience is not about being regular or predictable, since no two moments of experience are ever exactly the same.
Unfortunately, if something cannot be recreated in a laboratory it is therefore of no use to a “real scientist”. Most scientists (including doctors) have been conditioned to only study certain aspects of reality – those that can be reproduced in a lab or under certain “controlled environments” – and yet, we don’t live in anything close to a controlled environment!
The environment we live in is so complex that something that happens in a lab may or may not happen in the real world, which is precisely why scientific experiments are not conducted in the “real world”, for if they were, science could never recreate a predictable outcome and therefore never prove anything. So we have spent the last couple of centuries buying into knowledge that is based on experiments that cannot be replicated in the real world.
Gnostic and hermetic philosophy proposes that we can intermingle and unify the material world with the spiritual world through our practical experience. Our body, mind, emotions and spirit as well as our environment and experience are the tools and the “laboratory” that matters the most to each of us.
It has become clear that we as human beings have a large degree of potentiality in terms of what we are capable of and what we might achieve should we focus our energy and intention. It is also clear from a Gnostic perspective that we ought to “see it” or experience it in order to believe it. This is a very clear distinction to make – whereas a “woo woo” mystic might believe in anything he or she hears, a Gnostic needs to experience it in order to believe and to know it.
In its current state, modern “quantum” science would probably accept a lot of “woo woo” possibilities in the field of consciousness that is our Universe, but they would likely describe it in terms that make it difficult for the average person to apply to their lives. Much of this confusion comes from the financing that supplies the money for scientific projects – they want results that can be patented or otherwise profited from, not universal principles that empower the “one-off” subjective capabilities of the human being.
Most of us don’t go around life with microscopes and high tech instruments to figure out who we are and what we can do, we go around life with our eyes, our ears, our dreams, our hopes, our emotions, and our intuition. Any group of people who tell you that your life experiences are false, meaningless, or delusional ought to be discarded from your life.
The wisdom that science attempts to offer us in terms of realizing health, joy, and abundance is far less clear and convincing for many of us than what spiritual philosophy or “woo woo” mysticism might offer. In the end, it is up to each individual to listen to the ideas and concepts that sound good to them, regardless of whether or not the hypothesis can be scientifically proven in a lab.