Does Universal Consciousness Have a “Telos”?

Does Universal Consciousness Have a “Telos”? According to double-Ph.D. (in computer science/philosophy of mind), Bernardo Kastrup (“BK”), the answer is “yes!”

See Universal mind has a telos | Bernardo Kastrup – YouTube.

However, this answer comes with a naturalist perspective of “Mind.” That doesn’t mean that any of the literal deities from mythology have a literal “Telos” because that would overshoot the mark! I can hear the agnostic-atheist readers sigh of relief. 

No, this isn’t an attempt to claim that Zeus or Yahweh are literal “Universal Minds” that sit around meta-cognizing about who they like or don’t like, who to strike down or raise up, or feeling terribly angry that the level of praise coming their way isn’t up to par! As if the mythical Gods are literally referring to universal-scale, human-like, narcissistic, bronze-age egos projected upward toward the sky! This goes beyond all of that egoic religious misinterpretation of spiritual metaphor and allegory.

The Telos Arises from the Mind of Nature

The “Telos” is a natural-oriented goal, coming from the Mind of Nature itself. It’s not a metaconscious, human-like mind, just raw Awareness itself as the core subjectivity of Nature. It’s non-dual, not separate from anything, and that’s because it IS everything. Ongoing existence, perpetual existence, is a drive of sorts. 

This takes us to the ancient Gnostic Abraxas symbol. It’s layered with cryptic imagery (see What’s the Deal with All the Weird Symbolic Imagery in Mystical Religion?  – Hermetic Idealism). But the consensus tends to be that it’s a driving force of the Mind of Nature itself. Driving the many fragments of perception back to the “One” or “Source.” In recent times, this has been used creatively by people considering the “Omega Point” concept, such as mathematical Idealists like Donald Hoffman in cognitive science, and the public sector social media personality, “Morgue.” From the old Hermetic western mythos, BK has caught onto a Mind of Nature ‘goal’ through his model of Analytic Idealism philosophy. 


Philosophy of Mind

I find the correlation between ancient Philosophy of Mind and modern Philosophy of Mind to be very interesting. I see a situation where the old notion that all paths lead to the same destination may be truer than most people think at first glance. The truth is buried down there, beneath the various “debris” that blocks the truth from clear view within many of the mainstream paths. But when the debris is cleared away, the common core comes into better focus!

For instance, as a young boy in church school, I had no idea that everything must be interconnected and whole. We were not taught that Reality is “One.” We were taught that Reality is fractured into isolated bits and pieces–all competing for dominance–according to the ideology and doctrine that was handed down to me by the church. Everything is separated into distinct and isolated parts. There is God and not-God. And yet, God is given as “omnipresent.” And I wasn’t allowed to question the self-contraction that I hope you clearly see right now! “All present” doesn’t mean present here, but not there. Present in this thing, but not in that thing. This is where the deceit of the churches began to reveal itself to me as an observant teen. To be frank, it caused me to become an atheist at about age 15 because I knew of no other viable option. I just went with a ‘lack of belief’ and turned away from it all. Because the churches claims are openly and obvious self-contradicting and none of what they’re teaching lines up.

Omnipresent means “all present.” This means there is no “absence” anywhere. Something that is “everywhere present” can’t be “absent” at all–not ever. To be everywhere is to be “everything.” Now we’re looking at natural pantheism. If we consider being present everywhere as “everything,” and if Reality extends beyond space-time, then there is a transcendent factor that arises. The term is now “panentheism.” The truth leads directly away from what I was given as absolute “truth” in childhood by my dualistic thinking church institution/denomination. And they were wrong, demonstrably wrong, in a myriad of ways that I examine in this post. 

Why were they wrong? The short answer–because the truth is contrary to the political and financial interests of my childhood religious denomination. To remove the illusion of a “middleman human institution” between me, the child, and my concept of “God” would ruin the illusion of the institution’s relevance and/or necessity. God is Existence itself. Existence itself is “Primary Consciousness.” There are no gaps between anything that exists in Nature and Ultimate Reality for the ‘middleman human institution’ to bridge. The Kingdom of the Eternal is within everyone. It’s a situation of direct connections and direct experience, and it is within you. Below is a loose take from the Gnostic Gospels that illustrates this point: 

“…the kingdom of the Father (Primary Consciousness) is spread upon the face of the earth, but men (finite minds) do not see it!”

Conscious-Based Reality

What’s right under everyone’s noses is that reality is a Conscious-Based Reality (CBR) according to both ancient Hermeticism and modern Idealism. The divinities of myth and religion are simply ‘symbolic references’ that point back to “Primary Consciousness.” This is easy to see when you drill down a bit. Once you get it, you may wonder why you never caught it earlier. The answer is that you simply overlooked it, which can easily happen due to the metaphorical “Babylon,” or confusion, within all individual finite minds. That confusion causes people to overlook the bloody obvious, basically. I did it. But eventually, I caught what I had been doing by overlooking the simplicity of perceiving reality as an aware experiencer of existence. And then realized, at one point, that anything that exists IS Existence itself, the Ultimate Reality. Interacting with itself from ‘within.’

Whose “God” in the world is envisioned as either (1) not Conscious or (2) not infinite and eternal, omni-everything, and absolute? All of the Gods are viewed as Eternal and Conscious and the absolute Truth with a capital “T.” They represent Eternal Consciousness itself–as Existence. When the confusing internal “Babylon” falls, things can become a lot clearer. Well of course the Gods are “Conscious” and “Omni” at the supreme level of consideration. The Universal or Absolute Gods always have been a symbol Eternal, Conscious, Existence. They have no beginning or end, no boundary, and they’re always presented as Conscious in the Absolute sense–a Conscious totality through the “omni” symbolic presentations. 

The myths, according to the late mythologist Joseph Campbell, are “clues.” And the clues lead us back to the human “psyche,” according to Campbell’s discourse. This territory is known as the “subconscious mind” to many people. And its relation to Infinite Consciousness and the Absolute “Mystery” is interwoven into the very existence of an Infinite Consciousness. The very existence of an Infinite Consciousness with no beginning or end is pure “Mystery.” It is called, “Transcendent Mystery.” What were the names of those old Hermetic schools coming out of Egypt again? Oh, yes, the “Mystery Schools!”   

The “Telos,” or the natural goal of Universal Nature Mind, seems to many mystics to be a situation in which Infinite-Conscious-Experience fractures into ‘finite perspective experiences,’ and then the finite mind perspective experiences reunite back together again as the “One” Infinite-Consciousness-Experience. There’s a natural drive-oriented “goal.” Fracture perspective, and then reintegrate it into the “One.” Fracture perspective, and then reintegrate it again into the “One.”

I imagine that some illustrative fractal geometry imagery can do this natural process a little justice. 


The modern Western mystical online communities are currently very mixed in and integrated with the academic science and philosophy communities – where cognitive science and philosophy of mind are concerned. That new coming together of eastern and western mystical traditions essentially shows the continuity between ancient “panentheistic” mystical spirituality and modern non-dual minded philosophy and science.

The “Telos” in the Naturalist sense of Philosophy of Mind, both ancient and modern, is addressed to non-dual conclusions that arise after the fractured perspective of many isolated and separate finite minds plays itself out–the processes of Nature, which fracture and then reunite again. This occurs within the context of a Conscious Based Reality (CBR) where the substratum or unified “field of core subjectivity” is pure Awareness at the “Omni” level. A growing non-dualism orients and points the way back to the Conscious Substratum “Source.”

Pure Awareness or “Primary Consciousness” is the very thing that the myths/clues have pointed us toward all along, through symbolism, metaphor, and the astrotheological allegories. The ancient cyclical models are exactly that. The Vedic and Hermetic traditions are addressed to exactly that. And now, today, we are rediscovering lost ancient knowledge, naturally, and as expected by the mystics who have kept the ancient Vedic traditions and the Western Hermetica alive and transmitting through the dark age generations (the Dwapara and Kali region of the chart below). This is a beautiful outlook from my perspective. The myths point us back to Nature itself as Mentation or Mental in nature. This outlook has us coming back around full circle towards the Silver and Golden ages, and figuring out where we were wrong for so many generations during the last descending half of the cycle of falling and rising human awareness. 

Support from the Field of Particle Physics

Today, within the obscure field of high-energy particle physics, space-time conceptualization within mathematics is no longer considered fundamental. There are now deeper theories which are more fundamental than the space-time-oriented physics models. Not everyone is abreast of those issues, but a google search of terms used will render a lot of information on the topic. The math gets much simpler when they use the “amplituhedron” (a geometric shape beyond space-time) instead of space-time theoretic methodologies. Formulas that would normally take up much space are condensed down to simplicity when they use theory that goes beyond space-time methodologies. This means beyond Planck scale (10^-33). Space-time conceptualization has a boundary, but Existence itself as pure Consciousness, does not. It’s spatially unbound. Eternal. Omni-everything.

Further, the obscure field of high-energy particle physics has taken one more step away from the amplituhedron and static, higher dimensional, geometric shapes beyond space-time. The next level deeper goes to “Decorated Permutations.” This gives geometry to the amplituhedron–a diamond-shaped geometric image that seems awfully close to some of the “jeweled” references in mythology, just saying! It makes me think of Indra’s jeweled net or something like that. The Christian concept of jewels off in heaven, the Eternal realm beyond space-time as it were. That could very well be a metaphor for what we’re now discovering beyond the limitations of “space-time” conceptualization, in the static and eternal, higher dimensional geometric realm, beyond the 4D space-time experience.

It’s All Consciousness

All of this–everything that ever happens–takes place “in Consciousness.” There couldn’t possibly be anywhere else that anything could take place! The Nature Mind is re-discovering itself through the medium of its own ‘finite mind perspectives’ within Nature–which are made entirely of Nature–including Nature’s own primary Consciousness, filtered through the fragmented perspective of the “many” different consciousness’s, which are always the “One” Consciousness interacting with itself on every conceivable level, and beyond all conceivable levels.

The goal or “Telos” of Nature’s Mind looks to be the case of having “Will” or “Urge” to fragment itself into ‘all possible perspectives’ of experience. And equal “Will / Urge” to reassociate itself again. That’s what the “Omega Point” concept is all about. This amounts to a post-dogmatic religion era type of “Telos” that remains, regardless of the nonsense that many mainstream organized religions have tried to attach to Nature’s “Telos.” They fall, but Nature’s “Telos” remains. The ALL-Mind remains. Without the confusing mental “Babylon” attached, either. Beyond the confusion of not seeing the Nature of Reality as Conscious Based, it can all be seen as just plain common sense, logical, reason oriented, and spirituality intuitive all at the same time. Reality is Holistic, what else would it be? The whole thing can become very obvious and matter of fact the deeper down the rabbit hole one is willing to travel.

Stephen Wollard 

The Hermetic Idealist

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