The Unmanifest

An article by Chiropractor and Aikidoka Neil Bossenger

Chaos Theory, popularized by James Gleick’s 1987 best seller [1], is a theory of non linear functions such that small input of the function can result in large and unpredictable differences in the output. In other words: In a linear system, the variables produce an output response. But in a non linear system, the variables merely contribute to the output response. A linear system can be broken down into its separate parts, whereas in a non linear system, the parts interfere, cooperate, or compete with each other [2].

It’s a natural tendency for one to look on in deduction and attempt to draw linear conclusions as to why things happen. A this causes a that – but nothing is mono causal. Nothing is causing anything else. Everything is self existent and its appearance is dependent on everything else in the universe, and the point of view from which it is observed [3]. The example I often like to use is that of a heated argument. Two points of view are being hurled vigorously across the living room. Resolution would come from understanding and attempting to construct a similar perspective on the issue before storming off to bed. Yet understanding could only arise from establishing why the argument is occurring in the first place, and this is where Chaos Theory comes in. Each person delivers their debate based upon every factor that’s ever influenced them in their life: Parenting, religion, schooling, culture, society, and how they feel at that exact moment. The list is endless: The myriad reasons the opposite individual has no understanding of except for the simple Newtonian this-causes-that observation of the event before them, and then their own understanding of it based on the exact same reasons. Arguing from two separate and distinct histories – it’s chaos!

Because they are Heaven itself, the people of Heaven do not understand that they are in Heaven.”
Morihei Ueshiba O Sensei.

The lessons of every great spiritual teacher have always had a common thread, in that we are all part of one consciousness and it is only with this understanding that true peace could ever be achieved. With the dawn of science and the quest to understand the laws that govern the universe, it seems at some point we have gone wayward in looking after ourselves and others. Things must have been so much simpler when local and global consciousness wasn’t tainted by television and mass media manipulation.

Morihei Ueshiba was the founder of aikido and one of history’s greatest martial artists. He was a man that detested fighting and his message was one of peace. Ai-ki-do, meaning the art of peace or the way of harmony. The first principle taught by O Sensei was that aikido is the path which joins all paths of the universe throughout eternity; it is the universal mind which contains all things and unifies all things [4]. Not unlike the major premise of chiropractic, outlined by its founders, that a universal intelligence is in all matter and continually gives to it all its properties and actions, thus maintaining it in existence. Great spiritual teachers appreciated chaos as it presented in their time and understood that all which manifests, arises directly out of the unmanifest by the process of creation. It does not arise as an effect of something else, and that there is a this causing a that in what appears to be separate events. O Sensei, a warrior versed in many arts, wrote that the scientific approach to technique is unifying the spirit, mind and physical body, living through the “echo of the body” and making it one with the echo of the universe such that the two mutually interact. This then brings forth the technique of innumerable and uncountable variations” [4]. He continued to say that it is scientific because it is based on the technical content of the foundation of the correct moral governance of human life.

The first point that arises from this is that the great teachers were formless, seeing that there was no form – no technique – but just that which emerges autonomously out of the unmanifest. Applying linear systems of evaluation and health care to human complexity is a paradigm not congruent with how it actually functions. What you think you’re doing is not actually what you’re doing. Chaos Theory defined that small input led to large and unpredictable outputs. But we’ve been doing it for 112 years now, so as traditionalists, please continue to check and adjust the “nerve system” as you do according to the rules, even though differentiation between parasympathetic and sympathetic activity may never be possible due to the ubiquitous nature of the autonomic nervous system [5].

The second point might be perceived as audacious these days, but fortune favours the bold. Why chiropractic will become the leading form of health care is because, with time and shifting of public perception, it can be appreciated once again as a vehicle for consciousness. Gaucher, a chiropractic historian, wrote that in the nineteenth century, one of chiropractic’s achievements was that it was able to to contribute, albeit tentatively, to the establishment of a scientific basis for the concept of coenthesis, which means “body sense”. A concept of awareness of oneself via the neuroskeleton [6]. Back care? Neck care? Oh how the mighty have fallen. If subluxation distorts your perception of the world around you, and compromises your ability to respond to it, then it is the profession itself that is clearly subluxated. Because in terms of altering global consciousness, not only are we so far from the mark, but the internal perception of chiropractic is so distorted that it cannot possibly respond to the needs of the world around it.

© Neil Bossenger 2007Publish

New Zealand


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