The Divine Incarnation in Modern Physics?

Physics tells us that all things are made up of massless light-speed particles that have become bound together giving rise to mass and spacetime. Is this the Incarnation?

It looks like everything with mass is composed of a combination of intrinsically massless light-speed particles that are prevented from streaming freely through the universe, as well as the fields that confine those particles.

—Matthew O’Dowd, astrophysicist and writer/host of PBS Space Time

This perhaps brings new meaning to the phrase “you are the light of the world” (Matt. 5:14). We are fundamentally made up of massless light-speed “particles,” essentially pure energy, which has been bound together by fields that keep those particles from traveling at lightspeed beyond their bounds (they still travel at lightspeed within the bounds). Phenomena like space, time, and mass seem to emerge from the interactions of the ensemble of this bound-up energy.

In other words, light/energy has been captured in clumps, bound together in groupings, “glued” together by fields (like the gluon field), which we call “particles” like protons and neutrons, which in turn make up atoms, which in turn make up molecules, which in turn make up things like you and me.

Perhaps this binding together activity, this clumping of light-energy into classical “particles,” this mass-giving Higgs mechanism, is what we know in many spiritual and mystical traditions as the “Incarnation.” (Perhaps the Higgs boson really is the “God particle” after all.) It is the process of something “transcendent,” pure undifferentiated light/energy, which knows no spacetime or mass, and bringing it together into collections, groupings, ensembles, giving it boundaries of interaction, which apparent limitation gives rise to the phenomena of space, time, and mass. Mass, or “thingness,” emerges from the ensemble of this bounded pure energy.

The energy has “become” incarnate, the Word has become flesh, Light has taken on form/body, God has been “born” in the world of objects and things. And it’s our bodies, and the embodiment of all things around us that have this property we call “mass.” These bodies are not something other than the Divine Light, but rather it is the Light itself, this pure energy, being expressed in incarnate form, the energy being bounded together in such a way as to give rise to form and the classical world of spacetime and things we see in our perceptions.

Perhaps this also brings new meaning to the spiritual idea of “Liberation,” which is perhaps when the Divine Light is released from the confinement of the ensemble, when it is freed from the binding together nature of the fields, when it has been emancipated from the finite limitations of space, time, impermanence, and mass, realizing itself as its essential pure Light-energy itself, unlimited, infinite (spaceless), unchanging, and eternal (timeless).

I’ve suggested before that we may be able to realize this Liberation/Salvation through contemplation, by transcending the “mass” of thoughts and realizing the pure consciousness within us, the pure energy that gives us being. In contemplation we transcend space, time, and all limitations. We may even feel like we are “out-of-body” because not even the typical perceptions of our human body occur there (see 2 Cor. 12:2-3). We can perhaps realize ourselves as the Light of consciousness, the pure Energy of the cosmos, the Light of the world, that we are the One, the Singularity, the Divine, manifesting its Self in all forms, incarnating its Self into all bodies, the Father in the Son, Brahman in Atman, Dharmakaya in Nirmanakaya, the Cosmos knowing its Self in you and me.

The Light that is the Divine Singularity, the Holy (Wholly) One, has perhaps incarnated itself as all things, including you and me, and we may be able to come to know this directly in our consciousness, as our consciousness, as consciousness itself, this living energy, this fundamental being, this ground of being, this divinity, this transcendence. Yes, perhaps the “kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:21), and it is you, your true Divine nature in this cosmos, being an incarnate form of the the energy of the cosmos.

If this is true, then all things and beings are that Incarnation; God has incarnated its Self as all things.


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