The hyparchic regulator: evolutionary form factors in a timeless dimension? J.G. Bennett on speciation, individuality, eight term systems…a warning biology is probably not even remotely close to a theory of evolution
We have suggested two post-Darwinian takes on ‘evolution’, whether in deep time or in history: that based on the eonic effect and that of J.G.Bennett. That of Bennett remains speculative, while the eonic effect by basing itself on world history is more empirical and more disciplined to be wary of speculation. Although we have been critical of Bennett’s thinking here it is useful to cite this author as a reminder to naive theological design proponents of the complexity of the whole question of design and that theistic injections almost invariably confuse the issue.
The real issue with Bennett is not theism but the nature of the space-time model (or lack of one) that stands behind his brilliant but odd idea of ‘hyparxis’ in his triple dimensions of time: time, eternity, hyparxis. This was new age spooky physics before its time and while Bennett’s thinking probably nosedives it is true that he well realized the problems physics is now having.
Bennett is one of the few people who grasped that some kind of form factor, to cite our own term used here to point to evolutionary intangibles, stands behind the (teleological) spectacle of speciation which so confusingly moves between design and the environmental adaptation that blends two modes out of the larger directionality of evolution.
There is nothing simple about ‘evolution’ and its real elucidation remains for a science of the future.
The question of hyparxis, at the risk of a botch of Bennett’s far more complex account, might be considered with an analogy: a writer has the plan in mind for a book, but this is still potential, and by analog ‘timeless/spaceless’. As he moves to compose the book the realization is an interaction of the potential idea with a temporal actualization and a series of parallel and/or sequential drafts, in a discontinuous series and or discontinuous set of alternates or drafts. The interaction of time and eternity is via the hyparchic dimension as just this discontinuous series as the book takes shape in a directional and willed action of creative writing. Early drafts suffer issues of quality and the cyclical hyparxis interaction with the potential generates an uphill qualitative transformation.
Note: this sounds like a creationist account on the surface, since the ‘writer’ is a kind of creator. But in fact it is not: the ‘will’ in this account is taken up into a far more complicated system of cosmic triads and the ‘human will’ could never be taken directly either as an absolute analog or as a reference to an evolved entity such as man.
My study of the macro effect is a good introduction to the real problems with theories of evolution. But it doesn’t go far enough: the model is too honest to speculate. It is hard to go farther, because we don’t see what is behind the phenomenological surface of what the eonic model exposes as outer evidence of a deep dynamic. But it is clear what is missing, a mysterious form factor and its intermittent action over the course of history. I have used Schopenhauer to try and help here and this might imply that there is a timeless (and spaceless) component to the macro sequence. However Bennett went off the deep end as to world history and muddled his work. The eonic model is far superior there… Bennett has a new view of space time with three temporal dimensions, time, eternity, and hyparxis, the later being the interaction of time and eternity. That seems nonsense from the get go but one might at least try to follow his idea: after, the noumenal would be beyond space time and modern physics is getting uncomfortably close to ‘happening’s that transcend space time, spooky physics… The eternity dimension (his account is very complex and uses a stramge framework like that of general relativity) often expresses a timeless pattern in relation to the temporal dimension. Bennett constructs an ingenious and useful ‘systematics’ of n-term systems and moves to apply this to three domains in nature: the hyponomic, autonomic, and hypernomic. He has a fancy version of ancient Samkhya with a version of ‘hyperdialectic’, which is like the law of three forces in Ouspensky, except far superior. But it is a drastic conjecture. However it resolves the problem with evolution by showing how the life realm (autonomic) emerges as the ‘reconciliation’ or third aspect (not unlike the marxist negation of the negation) of the active hypernomic and the passive hyponomic. Bennett’s n-term systems convincingly rise along a cascade of complex entities from a ground state ‘hyle’ to corpuscles, particles, 0, 1, 2 term systems, ‘things’ or four term systems (from hydrogen, an elementary ‘thing’ to pieces of wood), to e.g. viruses (five term) to cells (six term) to organisms (seven term) to the concluding level of ‘individuality’ (eight term) systems. Man is a partial (or failed) organism version of an individualizing organism. But beyond that Bennett most ingeniously constructs the level of the biosphere as a complex entity that regulates the level of speciation: in this account the species is an eight term system, and speciation occurs in a very complex (and not quite clear) relationship to the biosphere.
Here’s the kicker: we see that ‘evolutionary’ processes are keyed by a timeless pattern in the eternity mediated by the ‘hyparchic regulator’. I wouldn’t have the foggiest at what that meant, until I realized I had rediscovered a variant in the way the eonic effect shows a timeless aspect interacting in time with a discrete series that seem to show action from the hyparchic future.
I must have botched Bennett’s complicated systematics, but the point is clear enough in a gist.
I have a rule, to leave the eonic model alone and not attempt to apply add ons. But there would be no harm in a separate book dealing with this (I had some intimations of this in the Conclusion to Enigma of the Axial Age).
Such an explanation wouldn’t even enter the consciousness of those now in the realm of Darwinian scientism. It would be factored our of discussion at once as new age goop. But while there isn’t a sufficient scientific basis for Bennett’s framework it is carefully thought out by someone who was an master of modern physics, general relativity, Kaluza/Klein stuff, and much more.
A species thus requires something far more than what biology has now. But is there any way to redo this material along the lines of science? The closest science can come to this scheme of time is in the still gestating spooky physics of nonlocality, etc…So science is proceeding apace. But the failure to distinguish the hyponomic from the autonomic and the total absence of a conception of the hypernomic is what has left biology in the sterile wilds of scientism.