According to Van Nostrand’s Scientific Encyclopedia, Field Theory was developed to study actions that result from interactions propagating through the dimensions of space and time (electromagnetism, gravitation).
Although the theory is mostly based on mathematical equations, the fundamental premise of the propagation of an action through a medium can perfectly be applied to species, animal relations, the human being, development of organisms, ideas that turn into action, Life.
The propagation of an action can be described in two different yet complementary ways: 1- Action with contact, and 2- Action at a distance.
Action with contact describes how a body, whether alone or not, can modify the structure of the space around it without transporting the location.
Action at a distance describes how a body, whether alone or not, can be determined by the forces acting upon its interactions as it moves through a medium in space/time.
These actions propagate through a medium, and their propagation can potentially create a Field.
The main objective of the Theory is to study how these Fields are created and transformed into ‘forces’ that propagate through a medium, and how these forces are determined or modified by the medium. Action with contact is a self-initiated force that can modify but not change the location of its surroundings. Action at a distance is a force that although propagating, is nonetheless determined by internal and external forces.
Galileo’s understanding of Reality is a good example of the Theory; his understanding was a self-initiated force that impacted the Field of human knowledge without having to move the physical environment in which he existed [action with contact]. But even though the force of his understanding ultimately changed the way we understand Reality, it was delayed by the dogmatic force of the church [action at a distance].
These two forces … our force to affect and the forces that affect us … are complementary (one cannot exist without the other), and together they determine the extent and significance of our actions. When I focus on a goal, I can initiate an action with which, as a driving force, I create a Field, say, of a belief, or the study of a new idea, or a political faction. But although the pursuit of my goal may be turned into a powerful force that can travel through space and time, its outcome will ultimate be determined by conducive or limiting forces acting upon me.
By describing the actions of a body in which the body is the driving force … the ‘operator’ … of a Field, we have to designate it with the attribute, whether instinctive or self-determined, of Purpose, i.e., an entity, quantity, or quality that purposefully affects or changes the existing state of any given system.
What this simply implies is that Field Theory does not only apply to forces like magnetism or gravitation, but also to forces like that of a species or a human being. When we decide to do something, to affect something, to accomplish something, to transform something with a sense of directions and purpose, we become the driving force, the ‘operator’ of a field of action.
To describe Galileo as the ‘driving force’ that ultimately changed the way Humanity perceives Reality, we must include his interactions with, and his dependency upon the existing forces within which his own force was being created. Galileo was the Field Operator, the force behind his actions, but the ultimate outcome of his determination to expand the field of human knowledge was subjected to internal forces [health, mental capacities, etc.] and external forces [the domination of the church, weather, etc.] acting upon him and limiting his determination. Galileo was imprisoned under house arrest for the rest of his life, but the force of his argument ultimately triumphed and changed the way we understand Reality.
When directing, or being directed by the power of ideas and actions, we are transformed into forces pregnant with the potential to unleash unimaginable transformations as demonstrated by a Galileo, an Einstein, a Gandhi, a Hitler. Although limited, and sometimes assisted by their internal and external environments, these individuals unleashed forces that, when measured by their impact or significance, transcended into how we think and act today.
This is what Erich Jantsch calls Self-transcendence, the reaching out beyond the boundaries of one’s own existence.
Our evolution has taken us to levels of discernment that allow us to see the difference between the two forces … the forces within, and the forces that shape us … so we can anticipate and face difficulties with ingenuity and a degree of control. But once again, we can only do this through the intimate relationship with our internal and external environments.
Our lives are fields in the flow of Existence, and even though the power or weakness of the field is oftentimes determined by forces beyond our control, when given the chance we achieve feats that reach beyond our own existence: This is the inherent power within us!
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