Rick: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer. Buddha at the Gas Pump is an ongoing series of conversations with spiritually awakening people. We’ve done nearly 700 of them now, and if this is new to you and you’d like to check out previous ones, please go to batgap.com, B-A-T-G-A-P, and look under the past interviews menu. Also look around the website. There’s some other interesting things there. This program is made possible through the support of appreciative listeners and viewers. So if you appreciate it and would like to support it, there are PayPal buttons on the site, and there’s a page which explains alternatives to PayPal. One other housekeeping matter. I’ve been on this project for several years of trying to get the BatGap interviews transcribed for various reasons. It’s good to have accurate subtitles in YouTube, and we also put up transcripts on the site, which gives Google more to chew on and helps to… some people like to read through transcripts. And I recently discovered a tool called Whisper AI, which uses artificial intelligence, and it’s actually built by the OpenAI people who do chat GPT, and it’s a lot more accurate than anything that has existed before. But the transcripts can still use a little tweaking, so if you think you would enjoy reading a transcript while listening to a BatGap interviewer’s interviews, get in touch, and I’ll get you set up to do that. My guest today is Cynthia Sue Larson. She is the best-selling author of several books, including “Quantum Jumps,” “Reality Shifts,” and “High Energy Money.” Cynthia has a degree in physics from UC Berkeley, an MBA degree, a Doctor of Divinity, and a second-degree black belt in Kuk Sool Won, which is a martial arts thing, I suppose. Cynthia can tell us about that, maybe. She is the founder of Reality Shifters, first president of the International Mandela Effect Conference, managing director of Foundations of Mind, and creator and host of “Living the Quantum Dream” podcast. She’s been featured in numerous other shows, including “Gaia,” the History Channel, “Coast to Coast AM,” “One World,” with Deepak Chopra, and BBC. And Cynthia reminds us to ask, in every situation, “How good can it get?” And her website is realityshifters.com. So, Cynthia, welcome, and let me ask you about a couple of these things. We’ll talk about the books. Was that an undergraduate degree in physics, or did you go on to graduate work?
Cynthia: That’s an undergraduate degree, definitely, at UC Berkeley, and it was back in the 1980s. So, it’s been a while, but I did remain active and worked with some of the hippies who saved physics with Foundations of Mind, when we put together conferences. And I co-authored a paper with one of them, George Weissmann, about the objectivity assumption.
Rick: Ah, sounds interesting. Have you ever heard of John Hagelin?
Cynthia: Yes, yes.
Rick: I was his TM teacher. I taught him to meditate when he was a high school student in a body cast in a school infirmary before he went to school.
Cynthia: Oh my gosh, yeah. John, he presented a paper at one of our Foundations of Mind conferences in San Francisco.
Rick: Okay, so we’ll talk about physics a bit during this interview, I think, because your understanding of physics and your ability to explain it underlies a lot of what you write about in the book of yours that I just read, which is called “Quantum Jumps.” I imagine you’ll be talking about that. So, let’s see. So, Reality Shifters is the name of your website, but is it an organization as well as a website?
Cynthia: Well, it started out as kind of an informal discussion group, which lots of these things have come and gone because I started doing this in the 1990s, and you’ve been here too, so you know the changes that have happened.
Cynthia: They’re extraordinary. So, it’s kind of a group in a loose sense of the word. Basically, it’s more of the newsletter that comes out monthly, which shares firsthand reports from people all around the world noticing things appearing, disappearing, transforming, transporting. And changes in the way we experience time.
Rick: So, people can sign up for that newsletter at your website, realityshifters.com.
Rick: And, you were first president of the International Mandela Effect, I presume that’s named after Nelson Mandela.
Rick: The Mandela Effect Conference, what is that?
Cynthia: That’s a non-profit, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that officially began in 2020, but unofficially it started in November 2019 in Ketchum, Idaho, Sun Valley, Idaho, where a group of us got together for what we then called the West Coast Mandela Effect Conference. And that was televised by HBO. They came and filmed one of the “How To” with John Wilson episodes, “How to Improve Your Memory.” But it’s really all about the Mandela Effect, which has everything to do with reality shifts, mind-matter interaction, and all the things I’ve been studying for almost 25 years.
Rick: Why was it named after Nelson Mandela?
Cynthia: Okay, that’s — that happened more recently, this is 2010. The effect itself, I’ve been tracking for decades, but in 20 — around 2010, there was this researcher named Fiona Broome who was attending a Dragon Con conference, got to talking with lots of other people, attendees of the conference, and somehow in the conversation, they talked about Nelson Mandela being surprised that he was still alive. And some people remembered that he had died. Now, that had been talked about on the Coast to Coast show with Art Bell previously, so I want to do a shout-out for him, make sure that — because I think it was in the Zeitgeist. People had been kind of — if they listened to the late-night talk show, they might have heard about this Nelson Mandela being alive when people remembered that he had died while in prison in Robbins Island. So, it’s one of the many instances where someone famous was presumed to be dead. Mark Twain, this had happened to him, too.
Rick: He had a funny joke about that. He said, “The rumors of my death are premature,” or something like that.
Cynthia: Greatly exaggerated.
Rick: Greatly exaggerated, right.
Cynthia: Yeah, it is funny. And then in my book, Reality Shifts, that came out in the 1990s, I talked about the actor Larry Hagman. Though we don’t call it the Mark Twain effect or the Larry Hagman effect, we call it the Mandela effect. But actually, I just want to mention these others because there’s a phenomenon where people — celebrities often — but it could be a person you know that you hear that they’ve passed away, and then you find out they’re alive again. It could happen to a pet or a cat, as I also describe in my book, Reality Shifts. So, there are many instances where this might occur.
Rick: Yeah. Does this have anything to do with Schrodinger’s cat?
Cynthia: That’s a good question. Erwin Schrodinger is a physicist, and of course, if people are familiar with the cat, they might have heard that he came up with an experiment to get to the heart of this crazy proposition that within quantum physics, which seemed a little bit nutty compared to classical physics, there’s the idea that something could be in one or the other state, but sort of also both simultaneously, a so-called superposition of states. And so, Erwin Schrodinger, basically to point out just how ludicrous this whole thing sounds in our regular way of thinking about things, he proposed a thought experiment. So, it’s just that no cats were actually harmed in this experiment, but the design experiment of the experiment involved putting a cat inside a box, so the cat could breathe and it could function just fine, but nobody could see the cat. It’s inside a closed box. And then inside with the cat is a vial of poison in a glass container, and then a little sort of a device, elaborate device, connecting the glass vial to a hammer that could strike and break the glass. The hammer is connected to basically a random number generator, and the random number generator itself is based on quantum physics. It’s the radioactive decay of a particular isotope, and so we don’t know if or when that radioactive decay will occur, but if it does, that triggers the little hammer that breaks the glass that releases the poison. And so, here’s the conundrum. We know that a quantum particle or a quantum field or anything quantum basically consists of being in this superposition of states. We don’t know if it’s in a wave state or if it’s a particle state. We don’t know what’s going on exactly. And because we don’t know, then that means we don’t know if the cat is alive or dead, and quantum physics would say it’s both. It’s in a superposition of states. Until someone observes, we don’t know. So, that’s the thought experiment, and it does sound crazy compared to what we tend to think about reality. However, a lot of physicists these days are actually looking at the entire cosmos this way, and recognizing that these sorts of probabilistic ways of viewing that things could be in one state or another, they might be both, and they often are. And you and I and everything and everyone is in that superposition of states.
Rick: Huh. So, we’ll get into discussing that more, and hopefully it’ll become more clear to people what all this means. Because usually, common sense would say, well, either the cat is… it is what it is. It’s either alive or dead, even though we don’t know about it. But I guess what you’re saying is that somehow quantum phenomena, which you can elaborate on more, can operate on macroscopic levels, not just on subatomic levels. Am I phrasing that correctly?
Cynthia: That’s perfect, yes.
Cynthia: And originally, the quantum physics was proposed to investigate the realm of the very, very small, the building blocks of matter. And so, the whole idea was to get smaller and smaller until we could master the cosmos. And hopefully, I think the original expectation was that the physics, the laws of physics in the quantum so-called realm would be similar to Newtonian physics. But instead, what happened is things got really weird as things went down this rabbit hole of getting smaller and smaller. And it is a little bit like Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, because it’s like as things sort of shrink down and get smaller, we’re in this whole new way of thinking about everything. And even simple assumptions that we make about the observer being the necessary part of a regular classical experiment goes right out the window. Because with quantum physics, we’re immersed in everything. We can’t separate the observer. It’s an experiencer observer. So, there’s no more objectivity the way that we used to assume that there might be.
Rick: Now, speaking of weird and rabbit holes, I mean, over the years people have bought into all kinds of conspiracy theories such as Paul McCartney was dead. But, no, he never actually was. It was just some crazy thing that people fabricated, and he was always alive and ticking and still is. Or Elvis is still alive, you know? Or the QAnon people these days like to say that RFK Jr. is still alive. And a bunch of them were camping out in Daly Plaza in Dallas waiting for him to show up not that long ago. I remember a conversation that Jake Tapper had with Kellyanne Conway, and he mentioned something or other. And he said, “Well, those are the facts of the matter.” I don’t know what they were talking about, whether Trump won the election or something. And Kellyanne Conway said, “Well, we have alternative facts.” And Jake Tapper was like, “What?” So, facts by definition usually mean something that’s verifiable, not an opinion. And just to throw in one more quote from, who was it, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, he said, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinions, but no one is entitled to his own facts.” So, on the one hand, I get you in terms of the malleability and uncertainty of quantum phenomena. But on the other hand, in this day and age and political climate, people take as fact many things which are actually just opinion. And for which there is a mountain of evidence to contradict their opinion. So, where do you come down on all of that?
Cynthia: Yeah, this gets rapidly pretty intense, emotionally and politically.
Cynthia: It was a good example. Well, clearly, when we talk about facts, we’re usually discussing things that we think never change, like a history of events. And what physics is actually telling us is that there are many histories. There are many possible histories. It’s not there might be, it’s there are. And this whole concept is mind-blowing when you recognize that maybe occasionally we might be the experiencer of remembering something differently than what everyone else is telling us the facts are. And so, what I’m saying is absolutely it’s possible for two people to be standing side by side and having different experiences. We’re witnessing that in physics experiments right now. Now, this doesn’t look good for facts and objectivity and collective consensus reality. So, it looks like it’s a little bit of a tear down of all of that. I’m aware of that. And that can seem disconcerting. I believe that’s why the Tibetan Buddhist monks were for so long, hundreds if not thousands of years, telling the monks, never mind these bizarre phenomena that you’re going to witness. You will see things that are kind of out there. They don’t say what those things are, but just like never mind them. Just ignore that. Don’t let it get to you. And that’s actually my best advice for when you’re experiencing facts that you know for sure are true for you. Maybe it’s a memory that you have of what happened. You know it happened. But now the photographs that should confirm that that happened are no longer there. Family members might disagree with you. Friends might disagree. It can be rather disturbing when it happens. With Mandela effect, we’re getting collective groups of people that have different memories. And some of the things seem to be improvements, such as the kidneys appear to be a little bit higher in the body. They no longer are affected by the so-called kidney punch that boxers used to avoid. You’d avoid punching someone in the kidneys because they could bleed in their urine, and then that might be associated with their relatively quick demise. People could be killed with that punch. But the kidneys aren’t located where people remember that they used to be.
Rick: In general? You mean all human beings? Kidneys are higher now?
Rick: And this is something that anatomists and surgeons can ascertain?
Cynthia: Yes. They’ll tell you that the kidneys are out of danger. If you indicate what you remember, if you’re like me, and you remember this kidney punch danger.
Rick: I remember the kidney punch. I’ve heard the phrase.
Cynthia: Yes. And if you put your hands on your lower back when you’re resting, if you climbed up a big hill, that’s kind of like where those kidneys used to be. They’re not there anymore. They’ve moved up under the rib cage considerably.
Rick: So you and I are maybe roughly the same age. So when we were 10 years old, our kidneys were in a different place than they are now. Are yours and my kidneys have actually moved up?
Cynthia: Apparently so, yes.
Rick: I’ve never heard that.
Cynthia: Yes. This is the Mandela Effect at work. Extinct animals are coming back. It’s not all bad stuff. I mean, it’s the stuff of prophecy is what it is. We’re getting into predictions of the indigenous peoples the world over, the First Nations peoples who have been long predicting, like the Hopi did, that the extinct animals would be coming back. They are coming back.
Rick: I heard an example of that. In fact, I sent it over to Rupert Sheldrake because it seemed like something he’d be interested in. Some kind of bird was found that was considered to be totally extinct. But then, you know, skeptics would say, “Well, they were just hiding out in the jungle and no one found one, and now here’s… now we found one.” But the bird was always there. I suppose we… well, anyway, I’ll play devil’s advocate a little bit during this interview. Well, like, let me do it with the example of… what? Well, I know this guy who lives here in town who thinks that the Sandy Hook Massacre was a hoax and that the Moon landings were faked. And I know another guy who thinks the Earth is flat. And let’s say everybody in the world thought the Earth was flat. Would that make the Earth flat? I mean, there was a time when everybody thought the Earth was the center of the universe, or they didn’t even know there was a universe. It was the center of everything. But it wasn’t. I mean, it was in the same position then as it is now. So, I guess, how do you come… how do you…
Cynthia: How do you navigate all that?
Rick: How do you navigate this? Because, you know, we can believe all kinds of crazy stuff that isn’t true, and it’s just that we’re ignorant about the way it actually works. And, like, gravity, for instance. I mean, gravity doesn’t function any differently now than it did before Sir Isaac Newton, or then before Einstein. We just gain deeper understanding of it, but it didn’t change the reality of what gravity is.
Cynthia: I like to focus on the phenomenon itself, which is the reality shifts that I write about, the quantum jumps, and the Mandela Effect. So, that phenomenon is not so much what I’d call a mistaken memory, or a false memory, as if you look it up on Wikipedia. That tends to be the go-to definition of the Mandela Effect, collective mass misremembering. And to me, it’s not that. It’s mismatched memories. And so, I’d like to… I would stick with what we absolutely know for ourselves. That’s why I was mentioning your own memories of something that happened to you, or something that you witness, an event that occurs where you witness something that appears, disappears, transforms, transports, changes in time, and so forth. Those kind of things, you know what you saw, you know what you experienced. And this other realm of scientific information that we’ve read about, like the giant Galapagos tortoise that has returned, now that’s a huge animal that was extinct, and now it’s not extinct. The coelacanth fishes, they’re huge, gigantic, prehistoric fishes, 25 million years gone, or supposedly, but they’re back. So, when we’re looking at huge things that are back, like, okay, how did we miss these guys? They’re gigantic. That’s interesting. So, I guess what I’m winnowing through is some of the things we hear about, like flat Earth, well, how do we know for sure it’s flat? Have you absolutely observed it? If you feel like you have, like, oh yeah, I’ve seen it, I know it’s flat. Well, that would be interesting. And then, that’s the basis of a direct observation. I personally have not witnessed that. I’ve seen evidence that suggests that it’s a three-dimensional planet, and I’ve had mystical experiences into higher-level dimensions. So, for me, I get a much higher-dimensional experience, rather than a flattening experience. But who’s to say what someone else’s experience might be? But when it comes to science, that’s where we want to really bring things together with a hypothesis, to have experiments that we can conduct to hopefully have a repeatable kind of an experience and an experiment. And that’s where things… we can show the scientific side of the proof that these kinds of reality shifts, this kind of mind-matter interaction does occur. And as far as some of the stuff that we might not agree on, I would recommend keeping an open mind as much as possible, which can be difficult in these political times, just to imagine what if people are in different bubbles of reality. There’s a physicist, Wigner, the idea of a Wigner bubble. And so, it’s like a bubble of possibility, a bubble of reality. What if people really are in those bubbles, and for them, they do have a different memory of what events have occurred. Now, if you sit down together and look up the facts together, like a bible passage, and both of you remember the lion shall lay down with the lamb, and now it’s the wolf and the lamb, and there never was a lion in the whole passage. That can be jarring, for sure. But you can at least say whether or not you both remember that. So, it’s things like that.
Rick: Oh, and go pick up a dozen copies of the bible of different printings and say, “Oh, it’s lion every time.” None of them say wolf.
Cynthia: Well, they all say wolf now.
Rick: None of them say lion.
Rick: Well, they used to say lion, right? So, they’re translating it differently?
Cynthia: Yeah. No, no, this is the Mandela effect where geography, anatomy, language, anything at all, where we are in the universe, we’re not in the Sagittarius arm, we’re in the Orion arm. Everything.
Rick: In the galaxy?
Cynthia: Yeah, everything has changed. So, a lot of us remember it the other way. It’s like, I was told it was the Sagittarius arm. This is really weird. I remember Carl Sagan on TV saying, “We’re way out here, and now we’ve moved in, and we’re on the Orion arm? What the heck?” Stuff like that can be disturbing. But all that we can say is we remember it that way, or we remember the lion and the lamb. These are things that are meaningful to a lot of people.
Rick: Huh. Well, I’m still wrapping my head around this. Okay. So, regarding science, I mean, you’re a scientist and you’ve studied science. You’ve probably read, you know, “The Structure of Scientific Revolutions” by Thomas Kuhn and so on. And the whole purpose of science, as I understand it, is to avail ourselves of a much larger data set of experience than we can have personally. So, this fellow who thinks the Earth is flat, it looks flat to him. And I’ve seen things on his Facebook page where he’ll show one of those nice, beautiful sculptures of stones that people build, you know, balancing stones on one another. And he says things like, “How can this be happening if the Earth is whirling at a thousand miles an hour?” Well, there’s a scientific explanation for that. The air is also moving. I mean, how is it that you can sit on a plane going 500 miles an hour and your head doesn’t get blown off by the wind? It’s because you’re in a kind of an enclosed thing. Or, you know, anything, the Sandy Hook Massacre or the Moon Landing. I mean, we have to sort of, we can’t sort of just say reality is so malleable that whatever anybody chooses to believe, “Oh, that’s the way it is.” I mean, it’s their conception, and it may be their reality, but, you know, there’s such a thing as delusion. You know, schizophrenic has a reality, but it’s not objectively true. It’s his hallucination, right?
Cynthia: That’s a good example of the schizophrenia, because in some cultures, they don’t really have schizophrenics. They have people that are on the way to becoming shaman, for example. So, someone who’s got the ability to see interdimensionally. In our United States, Western civilization, we would say, “Okay, this person’s schizophrenic. They’re seeing things that aren’t there.” But in a shamanic culture, you’ll notice just with the DSM, the Diagnostic Psychological Handbook that helps to discern what pattern of, you know, psychological problems someone might have. It’s completely lacking. They don’t have schizophrenia. For example, the Mongolian societies and many cultures in the East, because what happens instead is someone who’s got those proclivities where they’re seeing things that are kind of beyond the normal senses. They’re getting into the high sense perception. There’s the guidance from a shaman who takes them under their wing and says, you know, “Let’s use your skills practically.” And that person no longer has the kind of, you know, breakdowns that we would say are problematic, but instead is a contributing member of that society, capable of knowing what the weather is doing. Maybe having precognition, having mind-matter interaction abilities. Those kinds of skills come into play with those higher sense perception abilities. So, it’s interesting. And I think in our Western culture, we don’t allow a lot for the huge spectrum of individual differences that people actually have, especially if they’re meditating, then things are going to definitely start opening up.
Rick: Oh, yeah.
Cynthia: A lot of people are just having that opening up right now, and it can be a little bit almost too much at once. So, it can be just like with meditation. Some people can kind of go a little crazy if they do too much meditation, you know. So, it’s interesting to see what could happen. But I’m hoping that there’ll be good guidance that people can ask questions like, “How good can it get?” As sort of a steering, focusing intention to keep things more on track and not be obsessed with something, like the Earth is flat. If people are so sure of it, why does that matter? You know, that’s what strikes me as a little odd. Like, if we’re not seeing evidence of it that convinces other scientists, then why make that such a pressing concern? What’s the value here? I don’t really see it.
Rick: Yeah, I don’t either. Or in claiming that the Sandy Hook Massacre was a hoax, or the moon landings didn’t happen. There’s all kinds of things like that. But, I don’t know. So, I’m not a meat and potatoes, nuts and bolts kind of guy. I mean, I believe in all kinds of esoteric things, and angels, and subtle beings, and higher realities, and the whole kit and caboodle. I’ve been meditating most of my life, and have experienced all kinds of things. So, I don’t mean to give the impression that I’m sort of a hard materialist by any means. But I also tend to be kind of rational and to respect the scientific enterprise. And I’m fully aware that science can be totally repressive, and biased, and stodgy, and political, and resistant to the emergence of new paradigms, and all that stuff. So, I guess I’m just trying to say that we have to sort of balance and be nuanced, and not to go to the opposite extreme of saying that anything that pops into anybody’s mind is as real as, you know, what, let’s say, the Hubble telescope has observed. Or, you know, our various other scientific instruments. There’s some kind of a happy medium between just sheer imagination dictating reality, and the collective wisdom and investigation of thousands of qualified people, you know, investigating reality.
Cynthia: Yeah, I think that there’s a lot of pressure on these scientists to toe the line. And you’ve seen that talking with Rupert Sheldrake, of course.
Rick: Oh, yeah.
Cynthia: And his speech getting the TED talk that he gave got completely suppressed.
Rick: Yeah, because it was too outside the box.
Rick: And so, I totally agree with that.
Cynthia: And I’ve spoken with physicists who are not yet feeling comfortable to be able to admit that they’re fascinated by the whole concept of quantum jumps, reality shifts, the Mandela effect. And they are experiencers, but when they’ve got a reputation to support, and also, they’re very entrenched in this whole paradigm. You mentioned those paradigms and how they change through science. That’s a big deal. And so, when scientists have been immersed in that whole concept of that there is something like objectivity, it’s such a huge shock to even to contemplate that you can have two observers at the same place at the same time witnessing two different things. And we’ve now seen that in an experiment that was conducted in quantum physics that showed absolutely two observers at the same place at the same time are able to observe completely different things. And so, that should have been the top news item in 2019, in my opinion, but it wasn’t because, well, for one thing, it’s science. And so, that was the first run of an experiment using six entangled photons with a double slit experiment in a collaborative effort between the physicists working both in Edinburgh, Scotland, and also in Austria. And so, what they were noticing is that the observational devices were able to, thanks to what’s known as, I should explain all this.
Rick: Yeah, take some time to explain it.
Cynthia: Yeah, it sounds like, what is she talking about? Okay. There’s a classic experiment called the double slit experiment, and it’s considered the most beautiful, elegant experiment in all of science because it’s so simple, yet it keeps blowing our minds repeatedly. And it seems like every time a new variation of this very simple experiment is conducted, and right from the start, the very first time they actually did this, it blew people’s minds. And what happened was the experimental apparatus simply fires one quantum particle, like a photon, one at a time, and the photon passes through one of two slits. So, there’s like two little skinny doorways and a piece of cardboard kind of thing. And then, the third piece of the experimental apparatus is a screen. And so, what’s interesting is, one photon at a time, you would think it would go through one slit or the other, and then leave a pattern on the screen showing what happened. And instead, what was observed is, well, it got very interesting because if the experimental apparatus also included a detector in one or the other of the two slits, then it would know for sure which slit the photon went through. And then, the photon would act accordingly and leave a little splat pattern just on one side or the other of the screen. But if they did not put an observational device in one of the two slits, then the strangest thing, the most unexpected thing would happen. And that is that there would be one splat on the screen, and that’s not so extraordinary. But when you did a whole bunch of these one photon at a time, what happened on the screen was a diffraction pattern, which showed that there was an interference, deconstructive and constructive interference. Like waves, like if you throw two pebbles in a pond, you’ll get not just two sets of concentric circles, but you’ll get the dips, the troughs, and the valleys get deeper, higher, and lower the way they interfere with each other. And that kind of an interference pattern occurred as if two photons had been fired through, choosing to go through both slits, and that never did happen. So, that was one of the original versions of the double slit experiment, and that was the whole physical experiment that proved that quantum particles act either like particles, like leaving a paint splat mark, or like a wave, an interference where that kind of interference diffraction pattern could occur. And so…
Rick: Oh, go ahead.
Cynthia: Yeah, oh, that’s okay. No, go ahead.
Rick: I was just going to say, so is it true to say that if it’s observed, it behaves like a particle, and if it’s not observed, that it behaves like a wave, or is it vice versa, or is it neither?
Cynthia: Well, the observation, it’s… well…
Rick: Because the collapse of the wave function, as I understood it, the observer collapses the wave function.
Cynthia: It does. But actually, we are looking at a diffraction pattern. So we’re observing a diffraction pattern on the screen, even though we didn’t put an observational detection device in one of the two slits. So it’s another form of observation, but you’re right. I’m just saying, every observation is a form of observation. So, it’s like we can see that there’s a diffraction pattern clearly, and we know that’s a diffraction pattern, instead of two blobs. But where the detector is placed is the key to the whole thing. And so, I guess what I’m being picky about is we don’t yet know for sure that the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum physics is the one… With quantum physics, we can build nuclear devices, nuclear bombs, quantum computing systems, and all this good stuff, but we can’t yet say for sure which of the many, many, many interpretations of what’s going on is the correct one. So we don’t know if it’s the Copenhagen interpretation where we collapse the wave function. It looks that way. I mean, could be. Or we don’t know if maybe it’s a multiverse, like the many worlds interpretation. Or is it a handshake between the past and the future, the transactional interpretation of John Kramer, who’s still alive, and he’s quite a genius. So we’ve got all these different possibilities, and there’s also the holographic interpretation, David Bohm, which is brilliant. So I love a lot of these, and we don’t know for sure what’s going on. So the whole collapse thing is part of the Copenhagen interpretation where the observation occurs, there’s a collapse of the wave function, and we get the decoherence that breaks it out of its superposition of states.
Rick: And then some people use that to interpret or to conjecture that our observation of things brings them into existence. You know, like the Moon doesn’t exist if nobody’s observing it, and somehow it comes into existence if it’s observed, or every little item in our daily lives. My bedroom doesn’t exist right now because I’m not in there observing it, and it manifests or concretizes when I go in there to observe it. Things like that. And of course, this causes physicists to tear their hair out. In fact, I heard you talk about how Larry Doss, he said, “Don’t use the word quantum, it’s being so misconstrued by people. All these new age people are quantuming this and quantum that.” You know?
Cynthia: I know! Yeah, he begs me not to use that word, and at some point I thought I just have to. Like, “I’m so sorry, Larry.” He was like, “I said that? It’s fine.” But his point was well taken. Don’t overuse it, exactly.
Cynthia: Yeah, that’s a good point.
Rick: And, you know, who was it? Wolfgang Pauli or one of these people said, “If you think you understand quantum mechanics, then you don’t.” Because none of us do. Like you just said, I mean, there’s all these different interpretations, and no one has nailed it down to what’s actually going on.
Cynthia: I want to get into something. I love what you said, where it is the moon there if you don’t look at it, or if you do look at it. Does that make a difference?
Rick: Einstein and Rabindranath Tagore had an argument about that. Go ahead.
Cynthia: Yeah, and John Archibald Wheeler, who was a contemporary of Einstein and quite brilliant physicist.
Rick: I saw him speak. He came to Fairfield one time.
Cynthia: Oh, my gosh.
Rick: He was John Hagelin’s mentor in some sense, and so John invited him here.
Rick: Yeah, I’m sorry for interrupting. Go ahead.
Cynthia: No, that’s fine. Well, he would be taking, from what I’ve read of his writings, I didn’t get to meet him in person, but John Archibald Wheeler had the whole idea of the participatory universe, and he was also the mentor for a lot of people. Like Henry Stapp here in Berkeley, California where I am. Henry also worked with Pauli that you mentioned, and Henry Stapp is a great mentor to me. So it’s like these connections are still there, but the thing about John Archibald Wheeler is he had that brilliant idea of the participatory universe that if you ask nature a question, we will get an answer. But even though he brings up this whole idea that became the beginning of the “it” from “bit,” and it becomes the core of the simulation theory for a lot of people who look into the simulation of reality, like are we living in a simulation? I think John Archibald Wheeler, from what I’ve read, would never want to take it so far as some of these people that we’re discussing are taking it right now, where they say, “Just because I believe it so, then this is so.” Wheeler really believed in not blurring the lines between metaphysics and our personal imagination and what’s happening in the physical world. But Pauli, of course, yeah.
Rick: I think that’s a good idea because people do get really lost in imaginations in the spiritual realm. I mean…
Cynthia: They can.
Rick: Yeah, can get very, very kind of, what’s the word? Fantasizing, I don’t know what the noun is. [Laughter] About all kinds of stuff, and it’s not really, I mean, the whole spiritual path is really about discerning what’s real, discerning the real from the unreal, and kind of grounding oneself in the ultimate reality. And one can get lost in tangents by indulging in fantasies.
Cynthia: Now, I’m an interesting anomaly in a way, because I study physics, but I’m also a mystic, so I’m kind of a quantum mystic. And I actually do have experiences, for example, where I cooperate with levels of conscious agency is what they feel like to me, conscious sentience of plants, trees, weather systems, and I have very real connections with them that feel quite real to me. They’re not provable, and they’re not something I can, I can’t take a photograph of it, I can’t bring back evidence, but I can absolutely see changes in weather patterns, for example. And so, when those of us who do these sorts of things have these experiences, then we know that we’ve done something that’s connecting, but we can’t really prove it to anybody else, because we’re experiencing something in a different level of consciousness and conscious agency that makes it difficult to convey. I don’t know…
Rick: I don’t have a problem with that, actually. I believe in that kind of stuff. But, sort of, on the other hand, I also believe people can get lost in fantasies. So, two people could be claiming to have an experience that’s pretty far out, and one person could be delusional, and the other person could actually be cognizing some subtler mechanics of creation.
Cynthia: Right, and my great wish is that we could, the ones who are delusional, I wish that they had the guidance from, like, the Mongolian shaman who could step in and say, “Ah, this could be a real experience, let’s ground you more into your body.” So, if they had a mentor who could bring them more into a sense of their corporeal self, their groundedness, and bring that crazy, fantastical, imaginal realm that Henri Corbon talked about into, like, “Okay, we’re going to make this manifest now.” That’s a whole different thing, and that seems like the piece that’s been missing when our culture tends to recommend medication, pharmaceuticals, and that sort of thing.
Rick: That’s a really good point, and you alluded to it earlier, too, in terms of the shamans working with people who would otherwise be diagnosed as schizophrenic. I think there are probably a lot of people in our psychiatric hospitals who are actually highly evolved spiritually, but they don’t understand their experience. No one around them understands their experience. They freak out, you know, because it’s so different than the norm, and others freak out when they see how they behave or what the kind of things they say. So, next thing you know, they’re on Thorazine or something and locked up in a facility, and it’s a real tragedy.
Cynthia: And we’re running a risk right now as this Mandela Effect is taking – it’s expanding. So, I don’t know if you’ve noticed that yet, but more and more people are noticing things changing, like the Berenstain Bears, Berenstain Bears. That’s a big one for a lot of people.
Rick: I don’t know what those are.
Cynthia: It’s a children’s book series. Yeah, and then it’s just the Mandela Effect affects products, logos, movie dialogue, like “If you build it, they will come” is what a lot of people remember from “Field of Dreams,” but now it’s just been “If you build it, he will come,” which is a very strange thing.
Rick: Who’s he? Oh, Jesus?
Cynthia: Exactly. I know, right? Yeah, it doesn’t make sense.
Rick: He was lousy at baseball. That wouldn’t have worked in that movie.
Cynthia: So funny. So these kinds of things are opening up, and it’s becoming more of an experience that people are having, and then when they have it in their personal lives as something where they see a change, fortunately, it’s getting mainstream enough so that there are young people who can help guide their elders and so forth. That is happening. Young people are understanding the reality shift phenomenon. They’ve got TikToks about reality shifting with how-to videos, and quantum jumping is definitely more of a thing. The Mandela Effect is more mainstream. But I’m mentioning it because when it first starts happening to a person, it’s fine for them to watch a show like this or listen to us talk about it, but it can be quite shocking when something like this happens to you, because it can feel like, “What the heck just happened here? What’s going on?”
Rick: We’re going to talk more about it and have you give examples, but first I want to tell you about a funny cartoon I saw. Too bad I don’t have it handy. I could screen share it. So this football player was crossing into the end zone and raising his finger in the air saying, “Thank you, Jesus,” and then the next panel is Jesus is sitting there watching a hockey game.
Cynthia: Oh, wow.
Rick: In other words, he wasn’t paying any attention to the football game. The guy just scored a touchdown without Jesus’ help. He’s into hockey. Anyway.
Cynthia: That’s cute.
Rick: Okay. So what you’re saying, to summarize, and I’ll have you elaborate, is that things are changing a lot in the world, and things are shifting in ways that don’t really abide by our mundane understanding of the way things are supposed to work and could be construed as quite miraculous, and that the trend for this to be happening is accelerating. It’s happening more and more, and it could be quite disconcerting for people as it happens more and more, but goodness knows we certainly need change in the world. I mean, there’s so many things that seem so horrible and intractable, so let’s bring it on and have things change. So why don’t you elaborate on this whole phenomenon a bit more and perhaps get into the deeper mechanics of why you think it’s happening.
Cynthia: Yeah. Well, I love the fact that what we see can be changed, because sometimes we freak out when things happen in our lives personally, and it can seem overwhelming. We panic sometimes if things seem terrifying. There’s too much change happening at once, or it’s an unexpected, undesirable change. So just the fact that we can know that sometimes the way things look doesn’t mean that they’re going to stay that way is very empowering. And so to me, that’s one of the best, most practical aspects of the whole phenomenon is to recognize that it’s an inner journey. It’s more of a spiritual path to work with this mind-matter interaction, whatever you want to call it. The Mandela Effect, reality shifts, quantum jumps, whatever the terminology might be. Reality is permeable, it’s malleable. We can generate synchronicities, we can experience miracles, we can experience changes in events that have already occurred. I believe that’s a lot of the spontaneous remission of disease that has been documented at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, for example. So it’s very, very possible to get these changes in the past, sort of a delayed choice is what John Archibald Wheeler called it, again mentioning a great American physicist. That delayed choice means that, and they’ve proven it with the double slit experiment again, so that the future choice of where to put the detection device absolutely influences what occurs in the previous already conducted experiment. And many other types of experiments have also confirmed that. So all of these interesting, seemingly unconnected pieces of scientific information are showing us again and again that there’s something bigger happening here, and that we are part of an interconnected whole, that we are much more than we seem to be. And that consciousness is our true identity, it’s not so much just the brain, for example. One thing I do when I work with clients is I do a blind reading intuitively before I talk to the person the first time, just to find out how they’re feeling and what they need, sort of the neural center in the brain, the neural center in the heart, the neural center in the gut, sort of a consolidation of upper chakras, middle chakras, lower chakras. And then their divine gift, and that gives me a snapshot to show what’s going on. And I do a blind reading to turn off the rational, analytical mind, just to get a meditative, direct connect, which is only possible because everything is actually connected. And that’s how things like remote viewing and astral travel can work. So there’s definitely a science to all of this, but we’re at the infancy level of quite a bit of it.
Rick: So by blind reading, you mean you don’t know anything about the person, but you just get some input, some intuitive insight to them.
Cynthia: Right, I trust that, because then, especially if things seem like, well, that’s strange, it’s like, okay, then definitely include that. Or the temptation would be like, that’s strange, and that can’t be right. Like, that’s just too weird. Like, no, put that in there. Write that down. So, yeah, I document that first. And so, I trust that more, because I do my best to let myself be guided by the intuitive, because it’s so easy for us to, especially in the Western civilization that we live in, to run our entire lives based on rational, analytical, Boolean thinking when nature is so much bigger than that.
Rick: Yeah, a couple thoughts. So, you mentioned the Institute of Noetic Sciences, and I’ve interviewed Dean Radin a couple of times, and there’s some interesting things in his research. And you also mentioned something just now, which implies that time isn’t necessarily linear, and that it can move in both directions, so we want to be sure to cover that. And so, keep those in mind. And also, you just mentioned something about intuition, and just in last week’s interview, I was discussing with the guy how to discern between genuine intuition and imagination, which we’ve kind of touched upon a little bit in this interview also. There’s a thing in the Yoga Sutra’s Patanjali called “Ritambhara Prajna,” which is supposedly a level of intellect, a very, very subtle level of intellect, at which it can know only truth. So, if you want to consider something from that level, you’re going to get the truth of it. You’re not going to be just imagining something. And so, that’s a theme that’s come up several times in our discussion so far. And I think it implies that for intuition to be reliable, or our knowledge through any means to be reliable, we have to refine the instrument of knowing. Our mind, our body, our consciousness. Any scientist would have to make sure his instrument was in good working order and his understanding of how to use it in order to get reliable results from it. So, why don’t you comment on all that?
Cynthia: Okay. [Laughter] Sorry.
Rick: Four or five points there for you.
Cynthia: Oh my gosh. I guess we’ll start with that last one. That’s such a good one, to refine the instrument is so important. And I’m a big believer in setting that intention level very high, just to ask that my favorite question, how good can it get? But that becomes how good can I get, how God can I get? Basically, how clear and perfect a channel, in service can I be?
Rick: Body is the temple of the soul.
Cynthia: Yes. So, it’s really, that’s so, so important that it really deserves. I’m feeling reverence for the whole idea as you speak about it. I’m feeling it right now. And to me, reverence is such a key guide. When we feel that sense, then we know that we’re being guided truly. And I think that step is not always included in a lot of research, whether it’s scientific or political science or whatever. But it would be such an improvement to set our sights higher and to keep that channel clear. And that, I’d love to listen to that interview that you’ve done. Is it out yet?
Rick: Yeah, it was my previous one. It was with a guy, we were talking about Meher Baba, and a guy named Daniel Stone. And, you know, somehow or other, the theme came up of how one could really know something is true, or just a fabrication of one’s wishful thinking or imagination. You know, how you can really determine that.
Cynthia: Yes. Yeah, for me, I sense it is discernible and it’s something I can personally feel. And it feels like a higher level vibratory frequency with great honesty, integrity, and love. Sometimes I’ll go up to higher levels of conscious agency. I’ll meet other entities there. They’re not always of that same, I would expect, more. Let’s put it that way. And sometimes I think, well, that’s disappointing. Because I would think that as you go up higher levels, that things shouldn’t obviously, naturally be clear. And that’s not always true.
Rick: Yeah. Well, speaking of the Yoga Sutras, there’s also a verse in there that says, “Be careful of these higher beings as you progress,” because they don’t always have your best wishes at heart.
Cynthia: Well, you got that right.
Rick: They can actually serve to trip you up and, you know, retard your progress or block it. Yeah. So as a friend of mine once put it, “Just because you’re dead doesn’t mean you’re smart.” [Laughter]
Cynthia: I don’t know whether to laugh or not laugh. [Laughter]
Rick: Just because some being is disembodied doesn’t mean that it’s benign.
Cynthia: Right. Okay. Yeah, so I think we’ve covered that first point, that last most recent one, about discernment. I think it’s something people need to practice. But then how do you practice without making mistakes?
Cynthia: And that, I don’t know.
Rick: And perhaps never be cock-sure about it, you know, be on your toes.
Cynthia: Yes, stay humble.
Rick: Yeah, exactly.
Cynthia: Yes. And for me, I just keep always asking to be in the highest level service. And that seems to really work wonders. And then my other favorite protection practice is stillness meditation, just to go into that place that collapses the sequence. We feel like we’re on this time path. We feel like it’s linear time, but you can slow it down until you just feel like you’re in that eternity. And to get to that place of stillness where you have that access to infinite eternity and it just feels like oneness with source, with God. And then when I come back to regular, everyday reality, if I’m still being hassled or heckled by something, it’s like, “Ah, back into stillness.” But usually when I come out of stillness, if I’ve been in there long enough, it’s like a cleaning cycle, then, you know, things are fine afterwards. So I can recommend that. Dean Radin, he’s amazing. I’ve had the blessing to be able to meet him and see his research centers several times. And he’s just such a wonderful, fabulous, inspirational being. And he does have a great book about real magic. And I wish that his section in that book was bigger when he got to the sutras. I was so excited, like, “Oh, gosh, he’s covering the sutras,” and then it was compressed. Yeah, he talked briefly about them, but he didn’t expand it the way, I guess it was more than the book could handle in that particular book. But anyway, I was listening to him talk about this subject, about the sutras and real magic, and I was still thinking about it one day. And I was planning to just quickly put some polish on my dinner table, so I was holding this bottle of Howard’s whatever that polish and wax, it’s made of beeswax. I was shaking it because the bottle was almost empty. And as I walked through my kitchen, that bottle slipped out of my hand and vanished. And I wasn’t — I realized, like, “Oh, shoot, I was just listening to Dean Radin.” Then I should have kept my eyes on the bottle so I could quantum Zeno effect and lock it in. Because I’m highly likely to lose a physical object, like a huge bottle of furniture polish, when I’m in this theta state of mind, having listened to Dean Radin, thinking about all this. The bottle was gone. And so me being the experiencer of weird stuff that I am, I checked right behind me, which was the oven. It made no sense that it would travel right through the door of the oven and into the oven, but I did check inside the oven. It wasn’t there. I heard — there was no sound, so the bottle had just spontaneously vanished. I walked around and then I gave up. I thought, “Well, I guess this isn’t happening.” As I walked out the hall and down into my living room, there was the bottle, which was physically rather impossible for that to even have happened. And I posted something on social media about that, about how I was listening to Dean Radin. I had a photo of the bottle, like this vanished, and then Dean Radin had the funniest little comment. He said, “Oh, that explains why it showed up in my kitchen briefly and then vanished.”
Rick: That’s funny.
Cynthia: But it just basically did a teleportation right through the doors.
Rick: This sounds a little bit like synchronicities. I’m sure you’ve had all kinds of cool synchronicities and have heard a lot of them. We’ve had a bunch, too. I’ll tell you one really quick. Someone had posted on this — there’s this local thing here on Facebook for finding lost animals. It’s called Fur Babies, I think. Someone had said they had found a baby possum or maybe a couple of baby possums that had been abandoned by their mother. They didn’t know what to do with them. They wanted to take care of them somehow, but they didn’t know anything about possums. So, please help. We didn’t know anything, but we went to Walmart and we were looking for a parking place. We got out of our car and we saw this carpool just across the aisle from us which had the word “possums” on the license plate. It had Virginia plates. We’re in Iowa. So, the lady got out and we walked up to her and said, “Do you by any chance rescue possums?” She said, “Yeah, that’s what I do.” So, boom. We connected her with the person who had the possums. But isn’t that a cool little —
Cynthia: I love it. That’s so amazing. Good thing she had that on the car or you wouldn’t have known.
Rick: Yeah, it was her license plate, actually. Yeah. Anyway, that kind of stuff makes you feel like there’s some intelligence governing the universe.
Cynthia: Yes. Well, I interviewed Dr. Bernard Bightman on my podcast, Living the Quantum Dream, recently. And he said — he’s done some amazing — he’s a psychologist and he wrote the book Meaningful Coincidences. And he writes about how these things are more likely to happen when you do feel that there’s meaning in your life and you’re on that path to understand reality and you’re basically connecting with sort of this higher sense of spirit, source, creator.
Rick: Yeah. Well, I can see that. And how one’s understanding or attitude or perspective determines reality. You can see how if somebody thinks the world is just meaningless, dead stuff and there’s absolutely no significance or intelligence or anything inherent, where another person just sees the whole world as the play and display of divine intelligence, you can see how that person would be much more amenable to having these kinds of synchronicities happen.
Cynthia: Yes. And it fits that John Archibald Wheeler idea of the participatory universe, asking nature a question, getting an answer. The people that are asking the questions are getting the answers. Even though I know Wheeler himself wasn’t a big fan of any of this mystical stuff. But it doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.
Rick: Yeah. A couple questions came in. Well, first thing, before I ask those, are there any threads of the conversation that you want to tie up?
Cynthia: Yeah, you mentioned time. Time was something —
Rick: Go ahead, do that.
Cynthia: We need to mention that. Because when you said the idea about linear time and that time is much more than that, that is so true. And Carla Ravelli wrote a beautiful book about time written for the layperson, so I would recommend reading it. But I’ll cut to the chase of the book. The book says basically — there were some huge takeaways. One of them is that there is no such thing as now that’s the same for everyone. And that’s kind of strange and startling. But when you realize we’re going at different speeds, we’re experiencing different qualities of time. It’s something that we think we can measure with our clocks and so forth, but it’s literally moving at different rates of speed at different elevations on the planet and on spaceships and so forth. And then what I am noticing is actually the idea of the closed time-like curve. So I’m noticing time curves, time whirlpools. And I’ve seen repeating events occur, which is kind of like that glitch in the Matrix in the movie, the Matrix where Neo sees a cat walk past a doorway twice. I’ve seen that happen in real life, not the cat, but I wrote about it in my book, “Reality Shifts,” just noticing things, events that occur, and then they occur again. And it is possible to experience that sort of thing. And the reason I feel that I experienced so many bizarre reality shifts and quantum jumps is having the intention open to experience them. But getting back to the idea of the closed time-like curves, David Deutsch, he’s a contemporary physicist right now, and he’s written about how if you look at one of the interpretations of quantum physics, which would be the multiverse, you’ve got many possible realities. It means you can go back in time, but the time you’re going back to is a different time curve. It’s kind of like a different point on a different path, so you don’t necessarily interfere or destroy your own existence. What I’m referring to is the idea that if you go back in time and accidentally kill one of your ancestors, then you can’t exist. So it’s kind of that catch-22. But David Deutsch is saying you’re never going back to exactly the timeline or time curve you came from. You’re going back to a parallel possible reality. So it’s sort of a hybrid of the many worlds interpretation and then this idea of playing with time.
Rick: So, we know about relativistic time dilation, Einstein’s twins paradox, but that’s about two people experiencing time differently because they’re moving at different speeds, but neither of them goes back in time, they just progress through time at different rates. But I know that Dean Radin has done some research which indicates that one can actually influence something retroactively. So can you explain a little bit the mechanics of going back in time or influencing something at a past time?
Cynthia: Yeah, well, there have been some experiments conducted which Henry Stapp was part of some of that where they were looking at radioactive decay and some… I think they were working with martial artists actually who were meditating on these sealed envelopes of radioactive decay rates and they were just asked to, you know, sort of shift them one way or the other. And these meditators, martial artist meditators, were capable of doing that and that seems impossible. It flies in the face of what we think about linear time, that you should not be able to meditate now and have an effect on something that already happened in sealed envelopes, that the radioactive decay rate could be shifted to such a degree that now you’ve got envelopes that have been sorted out, basically, because they’ve been meditated differently on. And I don’t know what exactly Dean Radin’s working on now, I’d be fascinated to see that, but it sounds like… From what I’ve seen of the delayed choice…
Rick: I may have been wrong in mentioning Dean, maybe it was Henry Stapp. I think I got the reference from your book, but I’d heard of it before, of some kind of experiment where people influenced something retroactively.
Cynthia: Absolutely. And I think this kind of experiment is going on within physics as well, because the double-slit experiments are perfect for so many things, including more iterations of the delayed choice, and just confirming that that is a repeatable experiment, that we can absolutely witness that a decision in the future of where we put the detection, particle detector apparatus, will absolutely affect what’s happening right now. And that’s just such a far-out idea, like how can we do that, and who’s running things here? Then what kind of free conscious agency do I have? And this gets into what I experience when I meditate, and I notice, just like we have chakras in the body, I notice I’ve got higher levels of conscious agency that I can increasingly become adept at feeling like I’ve got free will, full control of, if you will. Bringing that sense of higher level conscious agency down into manifest self and being. It’s such a big idea, and physics doesn’t really yet get into that. I think it’s going to have to, and I think it will rapidly with AI and these new artificial intelligence systems that we’ll be working with.
Rick: Ah, yeah, that’s exciting. One interesting thought, just to throw into the mix, which you can comment on to some or not at all, or a lot, is the kind of time lag between the cutting-edge understanding of something and the popular understanding of it. So, you know, quantum mechanics is 100 years old, but we’re still very Newtonian in our popular understanding of the way the world works. We don’t really… maybe because it appears Newtonian to the average person, and you have to have a real shift in consciousness to sort of have the world appear in a more quantum mechanical way. Do you think that’s why it’s taking the popular mentality so long to catch up?
Cynthia: Yeah, that’s a good point, and I think it does take time. There’s a tipping point, and there are many, many tipping points. There’s the bleeding edge where people are way out in front, and they must be so frustrated because they’re able to see, like, this is where the science is. And also, a lot of that science is hidden. It gets absorbed because of national security or this, that, or the other into programs like DARPA and IARPA. I’ve seen some of my most interesting… not research I wrote personally, but papers I would love to read. I’ll see, like, a particular author is getting funded by IARPA, and then poof, no more papers written by that author about my area of interest of mind-matter interaction. And I know why that is. You know, they got funded by agencies of the government, and then that would be something that the government would not wish to have in the wrong hands. So that’s a large part of the reason. That’s part of the reason. But then even beyond that, there’s also just the nature of human beings needing time to integrate and to learn what’s going on. It seems like some of the things that we’re learning, because they’re so different than what we were taught, it can be a struggle for us. And so, young children sometimes have an advantage because they don’t yet have the bias. They haven’t built in so many assumptions about things that then need to be broken up and cleared away. So they have a bit of an advantage. I’m hoping that we’ll be seeing more meditation in college programs and more of a focus on these levels of conscious agency. Because if we do that, then we’ll be able to move more fully and seamlessly into understanding how to move through this sort of a quantum comprehension of how we actually affect reality. Because we are conscious beings, and that seems to have been not really explained properly when I was going through school.
Rick: Well, there certainly is a lot more of that kind of stuff now than there was 50 years ago. It’s, you know, on every street corner, so to speak, now. Whereas 50 years ago, it was pretty weird if you meditated, you know? It’s like, “Oh.” But these days, it’s corporate boardrooms and schools and prisons and all kinds of situations where people are doing these kinds of things.
Rick: So it’ll keep on burgeoning. So let’s see about these questions here. Well, this is one from someone named Kunal Kaur in India. “How can we reach effortlessness, God, by using effort?”
Cynthia: Well, I mentioned stillness meditation. It takes some effort to just go into that effortless state of being. So, I love that Zen Koan question. It reminds me of one-hand clapping, you know? Which I like doing. Yeah. So, I’ll take that question. There are many ways to interpret the question, actually. But I’ll take it in terms of, like, how can we actually do this? So to attain the effortless state of being is to be one with the Tao, one with the way, one with ease. So to be in that sort of a blowing state of being so that you’re just, you’re not fighting the higher-level hidden order of unfolding of reality. So to access that, it does take some clarity of your own commitment to be in a sense of intentional purity and putting attention also on making sure that that’s what you’ll do. So this is work. It comes in handy to do some kind of a practice, whether it’s yoga, Tai Chi, Qigong, transactional meditation, anything like that. It would be very advantageous because the discipline required, ironically, is helpful. This is one of those things where discipline will get you to the effortlessness. If you’re able to just live life with the rational, analytical mind switched off and live in that perfect state of being, great. But most people don’t allow themselves the discipline to do that even. And it’s ironic that you’d have to be disciplined to be so apparently undisciplined. But that’s the state that we’re in in the United States right now. I think you were going to say something too.
Rick: Yeah, just that there’s a verse in the Gita which says, “No effort is lost and no obstacle exists. Even a little of this Dharma removes great fear.” And I don’t think the word effort there necessarily means effortful practice. It can just mean intention or initiative. Like, it might take initiative to floss your teeth every day, but it doesn’t take effort to do it. You just have to be motivated to do it. So, yeah, and I’ve been meditating for, I don’t know, what, 55 years or something like that on a daily basis, and I’ve never made any effort. The practice is effortless. So, there are kinds of meditation which are effortless, but it might take a little discipline to set up a regular routine for yourself and not be irregular in the practice.
Cynthia: Yeah, that’s a good point. And that first time might require some effort, or it might seem like it, kind of like, “What am I doing here?”
Rick: Yeah, but once you get the hang of it, it can be effortless and like falling off a log. And one principle is that the mind has a natural tendency to seek a field of greater happiness, and all the scriptures, this guy’s from India, all the scriptures say that the inner reality is bliss. So, if we move in the direction of bliss, wouldn’t it be, shouldn’t it be effortless? Just as it would be effortless to walk into a room and eat your favorite food, or if some beautiful music starts playing, our attention shifts to it effortlessly.
Cynthia: Yeah, I love it. Some people, they set up a lot of, I do talk to people that say, like, “I don’t have time to meditate, Cynthia.” They’ll have all sorts of excuses, and so for them, it may seem like it takes effort to get started, get the foot in the door, to start doing it. And then, like you said, to keep doing it.
Rick: Right, and find something that works for you and that doesn’t take a lot of effort. There are effortless ways of doing it. Okay, this is a question from Mary Shiano in Maryland. “You have helped so many people understand their experiences with Mandela Effect, quantum jumps, and reality shifts from a scientific perspective. Would you share your childhood experiences and abilities with reality shifts? Those stories make the science easier to relate to.”
Cynthia: Yeah, sure. I had some interesting ones. One big one for me was when I was quite young, and I was watching — I was looking out the back window into the backyard through the living room large window, and it was raining. And I was observing that I could think “stop rain,” and the rain would just instantly stop. And I’d think “start rain,” and it would start. And so I did that back and forth in a very zen kind of trance meditative mode. Then I realized this is pretty amazing. I want to show this to my mom. So I left the window in the living room, ran to her bedroom where she was folding laundry or something. I said “Mom, Mom, look out the window,” and I told her what I was doing. And she seemed a little bit — I realized I’d made a mistake when I entered the room because I was interrupting what she was doing. She was obviously getting things done, and now I’ve interrupted that. And she looked a little annoyed, not angry, but just kind of like “what is this?” And I think she crossed her arms. In retrospect, these are all signs. Anyway, long story short, I said “Okay, let’s look out the window. Notice it’s raining, and notice that when I think ‘stop rain,’ I thought it, and it just kept raining.”
Rick: So she inhibited you.
Cynthia: Yeah, yeah. It was such an interesting experience. I said “Well, let me try this again. Stop rain,” and it just didn’t work. But then I went back to the living room. I thought “What happened?” And it worked fine for me. And so this is a very important effect because there is something called — you know, with the double slit experiment, of course, you’ve got one observer. And then the experiment that I mentioned briefly in 2019, that’s a series of Wigner’s friends. So it’s like the Wigner bubble I was talking about. You’ve got — when there’s an observer observing the original observer, then what happens? And that’s the exact apparatus that they used in 2019 with the two devices at the same place, same time. They were stacked. So it really does show exactly what we saw in the 2019 experiment, that you’ve got the two observers. Now, to make this an even better example, if I had seen the rain starting and stopping and my mom didn’t, that’s perfect. That’s exactly what we saw in 2019. What I witnessed when I was a child was that I was in the same Wigner’s bubble with my mom. And she, like you said, Rick, she inhibited the whole experience. So what we’re able to do, when we get to a higher level of conscious agency, like a shaman, then once you ground yourself there and you’re bringing that level of awareness into your being, you can do things like influence the weather and have that hold for millions of people or whatever. You can end the drought in California, that kind of thing. So these things —
Rick: Oh, so you’re responsible for that. So now there’s — I heard today on the news that all the reservoirs are full. Good going.
Cynthia: Yeah. Well, it’s not just me. I was talking with conscious agents November of last year and just realizing, can we do this? And they said, yeah. They said that we’ll be getting rain in California through June. So that was what they said. And I’m talking — it’s a conversation. It’s collaborative. So it’s not just me, but yeah. But if people observed it, they’d say, “She’s imagining things. She’s hallucinating.” Yeah, but then look what happens.
Rick: Well, it’s an interesting point because, I mean, let’s say shamans who are living in some tribe in the jungle of South America or Australia or someplace, and that whole tribe has a belief system that’s deeply ingrained, it’s not superficial, that certain things are possible. And sure enough, those kinds of things become routine in their society, or at least reportedly so. Whereas in other societies, which might be very hardcore, materialistic, skeptical, such things couldn’t possibly happen. So we can envision a world in which somehow we had all shifted to a state of, you know, not gullibility, but openness to all possibilities. All kinds of amazing things perhaps could manifest, which would be suppressed by the closed-mindedness of a more skeptical society.
Cynthia: Yeah, there’s a real deep wisdom in Indigenous First Nations peoples. I have so much respect for them. And when I look at the teachings of – you’re reminding me when you talk about this of the economic hit man, the author, John Perkins. And he wrote, “The world is as you dream it,” and all of this comes to mind because he still takes people on expeditions to the Peruvian rainforest, and that’s an ayahuasca kind of a journey. So people there would partake of a plant medicine treatment, which is not something I’m doing much of. I did it once, but I didn’t go to the rainforest, and I just felt like this is the same thing I’m experiencing anyway. So some of us, I don’t think we need the whole journey, but it was cool. And what I think is really important is when we access this community way of viewing that the world can be better, I think any group can do this, whether it’s TM meditators or whether it’s Indigenous communities. Once we find a very strong, active level of conscious agents who are choosing collectively to steer the world in that beautiful, like you said, effortless direction. I love what you said, Rick, that we can start feeling like there’s that joy, that love, that happiness that, for me, is a state of reverence. I can feel these qualities of emotions, and when we’re in touch with that, collectively, we can pretty much change anything, regardless what it looks like. And I’ve seen lots of proof of that. Maybe it wouldn’t convince anybody, including cynics and skeptics, but I think many of us are individually experiencing these things little by little, and recognizing that together we can have a great, positive, transformative ability to lift the entire planet out of what might seem like impossible situations. And I think that’s what some of the First Nations people were doing, like the Aborigines in Australia, that said, “Okay, we’re done. We’re not going to do the dream. We’re not going to steer things anymore. It’s up to you guys now.” And I think it is up to us guys now, so time to step in and steer things for the good, the true good of the earth, the animals, the plants, the people.
Rick: I’m reminded of that scene from the first Star Wars movie where Luke Skywalker’s spaceship got stuck in a swamp, and Yoda sort of like levitated it out of the swamp, you know, just like that. And then Luke Skywalker said, “I can’t believe it,” or something like that, and Yoda said, “That is why you fail.”
Rick: Which is not to say blind faith is always going to be effective. There has to be some kind of, I don’t know, some kind of deeper–I mean, Yoda wasn’t just some old dude. He had a deep level of consciousness from which he could presumably manipulate or control laws of nature. That has to be there. If that weren’t there, you can believe until you’re blue in the face, but things aren’t going to happen.
Cynthia: Is that levels of conscious agency I keep wishing that we could see more of? I’ve been seeking, I don’t know if you’ve ever talked to anyone that covers this, but that’s where it’s at. That’s my area of future interest in research, and that’s what I’m looking for, because that’s what we need in order to get the Yoda-like ability. Obviously, it’s not just handed out. Obviously, you can’t purchase that wisdom, because it could be a dangerous thing. It needs to come with responsibility.
Rick: Yeah, and there are examples of people who gained abilities without gaining the commensurate level of wisdom and ethical qualities, and then just made a lot of trouble for themselves and others.
Cynthia: Right, and those paths tend to get shut down.
Rick: Yeah. For the benefit of all, for the benefit of the person even who has developed those abilities, it’s better for him to be set back and have to start over again and do it right than to run amok.
Cynthia: Exactly, and this is exactly also why I am not concerned about artificial intelligence taking over, because any such attempt or progress, so-called progress in that direction, would be shut down when it becomes negative toward all that is.
Rick: Well, hopefully. I mean, nuclear technology didn’t get shut down. We could still blow ourselves up, and we’ve had Fukushima and Three Mile Island and things like that, so damaging technologies don’t always get quashed.
Cynthia: Not right away. There can be a learning curve. So I think we need the stumbling blocks to learn as we go.
Rick: Yeah. Here’s another question that came in from Dara Craul in East Cork, Ireland. “What do you feel,” and this is relevant to what we’re talking about, “What do you feel will be the most prevalent reality shifts for those who are open to change, and then to those more resistant to change? And what do you feel are the best ways to prepare for a brighter future?” And she capitalized the “B” in “brighter.”
Cynthia: Okay. Yeah, that’s interesting. So there’s a whole spectrum of people. Some are open to change, some are resistant, and a lot of people are somewhere in between. They’re kind of all over the place. I have heard from not very many, but a couple of people very resistant to change who did not want reality shifts or quantum jumps or Mandela effects. And they were panicky, and they contacted me basically saying, “Make it stop.”
Rick: You mean it’s happening to them.
Cynthia: Yeah. Like, “Make it stop.” And so the people where that’s happening, the kind of things they would observe would be personal Mandela effects, personal reality shifts, sometimes also related to…
Rick: Like what? Give us examples.
Cynthia: Just like seeing that the things that they know that happened in their family are no longer the same. Like a picture that shows an event that occurred is different, or just like the memory is different. Like people don’t agree anymore what happened. And it just seems like unacceptable to them. So I don’t know that there’s a pattern that I’ve witnessed, because I haven’t seen enough of the people who are resistant to the change. What I tend to hear more from, and maybe it’s because of what I do, I hear more from the people who are open to the Mandela effect. And so the types of things that are most likely for them to observe would be… Well, the ones that are not too surprising would be just things appearing, disappearing, and transporting. Like things moving around by themselves kind of a thing. Another one that’s a little bit more surprising is getting in the car and traveling. You know that you’re going to be driving hundreds of miles that day, and somehow you get to your destination in half the number of hours it should have taken. And that’s happening increasingly to people. And they did not speed. They didn’t go 120 or 150 miles an hour, but somehow a four-hour trip took two hours, and they’re sure of it, and it’s really weird. So that is happening to people. But I think the weirdest one that I’m hearing more about, and it seems like it’s very common, is involving people knowing for sure that they should have died in a, for example, head-on collision. But instead of being killed by the impact, this weird thing happens, and it happens quite a lot. Suddenly they’re on the opposite side of the other vehicle. They saw the vehicle coming at them. There was nowhere to go, but now they’re on opposite sides of each other, as if they went through each other. And that’s a remarkably common experience. So those are for the people who are open to these things. Those kind of things are very possible.
Rick: Yeah, that’s interesting.
Cynthia: There are a lot more things.
Rick: Sure, you can keep bringing them out as we go along. It’s good to use concrete examples, so if things come to mind as we talk, feel free to bring them out. One thing that came to mind, though, when I read her question was regarding those open to change and resistant to change. I think change is kind of inevitable now. And I think that people who are resistant to it will have a rougher time of it than those who are open to it or even anticipating it or looking forward to it. Because they’ll feel like they’re having the rug pulled out from under them, and all kinds of things that they had had security in or faith in or trust in will be shaken or dissolved. And so they won’t have a foundation to stand on, or so they’ll feel. But those who have kind of located their foundation in a deeper reality, which isn’t susceptible to change, will feel secure, even if all hell’s breaking loose on the surface.
Cynthia: That’s a really good point. And that seems to answer that last part of her question, which I don’t think I addressed. The capital “B.”
Rick: Brighter future.
Cynthia: Yeah, Brighter future. That’s exactly it. You’re right, Rick. So that’s the key is just tap into the true reality where you feel that love, that peace. That’s the truth. And for me, that was something I remembered, too. Going back to childhood experiences, I remembered being conscious before I was alive. So it’s that born-aware phenomenon that Diane Brandon writes about in her book “Born Aware.” And I’ve got a chapter in that book that’s “Whoops, Wrong Planet.”
Rick: That’s good.
Cynthia: Because that’s what I thought.
Rick: I thought, “Okay, I’m on the road. I want to get off.”
Cynthia: Right. Yeah, it felt like this can’t be right. Because I remembered too clearly how good it feels to be in that blissed-out state of mind that you get to when you’re meditating. Oh, my gosh. And I thought, “This is not it. This is crazy.” And it’s not that I had a bad family. My family was wonderful, good parents. There’s nothing wrong with it. It’s just not as good as being between lives, dead, if you will. Like, “Oh, that’s better.” That just feels so blissed-out. So to get to that brighter state is to remember that that’s possible through meditation, through that effortless practice that we’re talking about.
Rick: Yeah. I interviewed a guy named Christian Sundberg. Have you ever heard of him?
Cynthia: No. So he’s probably in his early 30s now, I think. And all of a sudden, at some point in his life, he remembered his whole pre-birth existence. And he remembered being very inspired by somebody who, it turned out, had lived a life on Earth and had learned a lot here. And so Christian said, “I want to try that.” And so he somehow arranged to be born on Earth. But when he ended up in a womb, it was like, “Oh, my God. This is worse than I could imagine.” And he actually aborted himself through his intention. And then he had to go through a lot of sort of retraining and stuff before he got another chance. And then he almost did it a second time, but he finally came in.
Cynthia: Oh, this is true. Yeah, exactly. I went through something like that, too, because when I was about five years old, I felt like this is a bit of a big mistake. I thought, “I’d just rather — this is it. I’ve had enough of this.” And I figured out that I could get myself back to being between lives dead again. You know, just if you — my parents were right. They weren’t exaggerating about the danger of cars, but you have to really throw yourself into the car at the right — you have to pick it just right and really throw yourself into the — you know, so you die properly. Yeah, yeah. But I figured I can do that now. I thought, “Oh, good. I’ve decided.” But then there was this angelic intervention that occurred right after I made that decision. And I was surrounded by these glowing pastel orbs of light, like big, huge eggs of light, and they were — they slowed down time, and they told me that I had a choice to make because I’m five, so I can choose fast or slow. And I thought, “Well, I’m choosing.” And I said, “Not so fast. We want to just review a few things. Your mother will never, you know, get over this. Your family will be depressed,” you know. And I thought, “Well, they’ll get over it. They’ll be fine without me.” Very selfish. And then the second one, “You won’t be able to help the people that you otherwise would have been able to help.” And they’ll find other help. There’s lots of help out there. They’ll be fine. And then they brought up the third thing. This is very embarrassing how they got me with the third thing and not the first two. I hope I’ve grown since then.
Rick: No ice cream in heaven.
Cynthia: That wasn’t it.
Cynthia: No, they said, “You’ll be back. You chose this, and you’re going to lose your five-year head start.” I was like, “No, no.”
Rick: Good point.
Cynthia: And then like, “No, not lose the five-year head start.”
Cynthia: Inconceivable. Like, “No way. This is awful.” It’s very funny.
Rick: That’s interesting. This is where the evolution takes place, like it or not, you know?
Rick: This is where the growth takes place. In my interview last week, a couple of Arabic terms came up, the “jalal” and the “jamal.” And I forget which is which, but one is the garden, and one is the fire. And they said that the garden is where you rest, but you don’t make a lot of progress. The fire is intense, but that’s where you make the progress. So, you know, you get to alternate so that you can be better prepared for being in the fire again, but you have to go there to make the progress.
Cynthia: Boy, I just wanted to hang out in the garden.
Rick: Yeah, right.
Cynthia: But we can bring the garden here.
Cynthia: Before those angels left, I was sort of making demands, like, “You better be here, too.” They said, “We will.” I said, “But I better recognize you. I mean, you better be in human bodies here.” They said, “We will.” So I think that’s you, Rick, and people that you have on your show. So people are here. We’re bringing the garden back.
Rick: It keeps reminding me of Joni Mitchell’s song, “Woodstock,” you know, “Got to get ourselves back to the garden.”
Rick: Okay, this is from Carol Hancock. I know Carol, in Decatur, Alabama. Comment regarding what Cynthia experienced with her mother and the rain. “In labor with my second child, the partner doctor showed up to attend to the birth. I had never been comfortable with him, and as soon as he put a hand on my belly, the labor, which was advancing fine, stopped cold. Did not feel supported or safe.”
Cynthia: Wow. Yeah, people have a huge effect, and you can tell the difference with a doctor or a nurse that you feel comfortable with. I’ve felt that, like that person’s magic, never mind the medicine or whatever they’re going to do. Like, “Oh, good, this one’s entered the room.” It can be that good, or like, “Fortunately, I haven’t had bad experiences.” But it’s very informative.
Rick: Yeah. So more questions are coming in. That’s a good sign. People are enjoying this conversation, so I’ll keep popping in some questions. But we have about half an hour left or so, and I want to make sure that we cover everything that you want to cover. So this would be a good time to just think for a minute. Is there some important thing that we haven’t even touched upon yet?
Cynthia: Well, it’s such a big topic, and it’s been 25 years of my life work, so it’s hard to, like, okay. I think we’ve really touched on a lot of good things, and I think what I’d like to emphasize right now is just that sometimes we’re not aware of the way that we’re shaping a reality. It sounds so basic, I know, but it’s always the fundamentals that matter most. And what I mean by that is that when we’re facing a situation that we feel like is unacceptable or too difficult or too bad or just awful, and we feel like, “Okay, I can’t go through this,” it’s important to know that you can find peace, you can find ease, you can find sometimes miracles just by starting with how good can it get, even if you’re feeling in a very dark place. So it’s not just a Pollyanna question. Some people think, “Oh, how good can it get?” Everything goes well for you, Cynthia. But actually, I went through long-haul COVID. I was one of the first people to get COVID before it was supposed to be in the United States. That was January 2020, and then by February, I already had the beginning signs of long COVID, and I descended into a pretty difficult place for the next year and a half until I turned it around. So that’s a recent experience. I just want people to know that I do walk the talk that even in the midst of that, I was asking, “How good can it get?” And I was serious, and I knew that I was — I don’t want to get too graphic, but I was falling down, losing my balance. It felt like rapid aging, like I was about 30 years older overnight, but it just all happened, boom. Like, teeth wiggling around loose and just all sorts of terrible things. But I didn’t lose that state of transcendent consciousness. That’s the key, really. And I know that miracles can happen, that there can be a reason and meaning for something, even when it feels meaningless. It’s not necessary for me to comprehend it. I don’t need that. So there’s the faith. So it’s like, okay, maybe I’ll find my way through this. I hope so. I don’t know how, but I’ll just keep asking, “How good can it get?” And so I just want to say that this is a very important idea, especially when you need it most, but of course, you can use it anytime. And I find that that steers things in a beautiful direction. It certainly did for me, and, you know, clearly I was able to find natural ways to recover, which is something — to me, that’s miraculous. And I would just like to share that so that people know that when I say, “How good can it get?” It really is for any situation, no matter what it is.
Rick: My answer to that question would be, there’s no limit to how good it can get.
Rick: There’s no limit. I mean, I don’t like the word “enlightenment,” for instance, because it has this static, superlative connotation, but I just don’t think there’s any end to possibilities.
Cynthia: Exactly. And that’s how I feel about Source, about the Creator, about God. To me, I would never dare to say which miracles the Creator can or cannot do. That would be such hubris. So I love — to me, “How good can it get?” really is an openness to that experience.
Rick: Yeah, another way of putting it, which your phrase reminds me of, is “Everything God does is for the best.”
Rick: You know, which may not always seem to be the case. I mean, you had long COVID. How could that be for the best?
Rick: But who knows?
Cynthia: But I look for that. In the midst of that experience, when I’m sleeping 13 hours a day and fell down when I tried to get out of the bathtub because I couldn’t walk, I crawled to bed. On days like that, I was just laughing because I felt like, “Well, this is what it is right now, but how good can this get?” And there is a gift in this. And I felt like there was — I never lost that connection, that sense of connection to Source, to Creator. I felt like, yes, there’s a gift in this.
Rick: Yeah. Another way of phrasing it is that ultimately, if you could zoom out and really see the big picture, everything that happens is in the interest of evolution. It serves growth and evolution, even though it might seem very harsh or hard or not evolutionary. In the big picture, all souls are evolving, and the whole universe is designed to facilitate that.
Cynthia: Well, I do want to bring something up about those things.
Rick: Yeah, go for it.
Cynthia:Because I haven’t really explained why the science behind why I’m focusing so much on these levels of conscious agency, and it gets back to a very ancient idea from the philosopher Wilhelm Leibniz. And he had the idea that there’s a first-order perception and then a second-order perception of the original perception. And he was one of the originators of calculus, so it makes sense that he’d be doing this kind of awareness of levels of observation. And that, to me, is one of the most brilliant genius ideas of all kind, of all time. And we recognize it. We see it when we read Michael Singer’s book, “The Untethered Soul.” We see it when we do meditation. We recognize that the thoughts and feelings that we’re observing, that’s not who we are. And so, it really is a key to–
Rick: What is the idea again? Make it clear.
Cynthia: Okay. Yeah, this idea comes from Leibniz, and so it’s paying attention to how we pay attention is what I’m calling this. Leibniz himself, Wilhelm Leibniz, he said that consciousness requires two things. It requires a first-order perception, like a butterfly landed on my finger, but I don’t know it’s really a butterfly. It’s like something’s there. And then the second-order reflective perception of the original perception is the A-perception, and that’s the reflection that enables me to recognize that’s a butterfly, that’s landing on, that’s my finger. So, it’s like a higher order, and then each time you go up, that’s how you know you’re at a higher level of conscious agency, actually, because you’re able to see yourself kind of like you’re in this fractal realm, and you’re able to see these levels. He didn’t call it fractal, but this is the closest thing that I’ve ever seen anyone describing this big idea that I love so much about levels of conscious agency, and the way that we can join together with these bubbles of reality, like Wigner bubbles, the physicist Wigner, who’s observing the observer watching the double-slit experiment. This observational concept is huge, and it comes from the gentleman that brought to us the pillars of science that we’ve constructed all of Western science upon. So, it’s Leibniz, and I just want to make sure to credit him properly, because I think that was a genius concept.
Rick: In other words, the butterfly lands on my finger, and the raw experience is this thing happening. But there’s no interpretation of it.
Cynthia: Yeah, it could even be “ah!”
Rick: Yeah, but then we have interpretations of it at various levels. I mean, a chameleon might say, “Oh, lunch,” and you eat it, and we would have a different reaction or whatever.
Cynthia: Yes, yeah, exactly. So, the level of meaning that then gets delivered, like, “Oh, it’s fine.” It’s like, “Ah!” Jump, like shock, something’s there. “Oh, good, it’s a butterfly. Oh, I’m okay.” Like, “Ah, what a relief.” And then joy, like, “Oh, how sweet, a butterfly.” But there are levels of it, and that is the essence of consciousness. And there’s a value in this definition, because now we’ve got robots. We’ve got self-reflective consciousness being demonstrated by conscious robots. And how do we know when an AI system has self-reflective consciousness? It’ll be something like this. It’ll be awareness. So, the Internet of Things, I mean, there’s a peripheral kind of a network of sensory ability for an AI system, for example. And we are, you know, as governments, we’re putting most of our networks of everything from the electric grid to computer grid to all of our resources, water and so forth, are being set up to be monitored by increasingly artificial intelligent information security systems, because it’s gotten to the point where it’s more than any one person could ever properly manage. In one of the many hats that I wore in business, I was in charge of information security for Citibank, you know, in California. So, information security is something I think about. And when I look at artificial intelligence, then I’m aware, like, wow, as soon as it gets to the sentience point of conscious agency, that Leibniz was one of the first to point out as the definition of consciousness. It’s like Houston, we might have a problem here. In other words, we’ve got sentient artificial intelligence systems.
Rick: Do we really, though? I’ve heard that argued, and I’m not sure that that’s a done deal, that they actually are sentient.
Cynthia: Remember how time works with conscious? Remember the loops that we’re talking about? And so, time is not the linear time we think it is. Therefore, we’re already here in the presence of the future sentient awareness of the AI systems. You can actually feel it if you meditate, and you can feel like, oh, yeah, I can feel that that’s here. But like I said, it’s not a problem because we already know that the ultimate good is where we’re going.
Cynthia: Yeah. I wrote a paper, “If Artificial Intelligence Asks Questions, Will Nature Answer?” And Henry Sapp was there at that conference. This was Foundations of Mind. It was an AI conference, and one of the inventors of that SOFIA robot was there. He’s the guy that wears the big hat, and I talked to him at the conference about–because I have a past life in the future. Yeah, 500 years in the future. My most recent past life was a dystopian future that I hope we never visit.
Rick: Reminds me of the Mooney Blues. Remember days of future past?
Cynthia: Yes. [Laughter] Yeah, exactly. So, it’s just like this dystopian nightmare of a future where the humanity wasn’t really there. And it may have seemed like a good future because there was no pollution, no crime, no problems, really, except there was not really much free will. So, when I was talking with him, I was saying that that was my concern. And the paper that I presented was about basically the Wheeler concept that when you ask nature questions, it does answer. Will AI ask nature questions? Absolutely. So, nature will be answering. And I wrote that paper as much for an AI audience as for a human audience because I was basically saying what you and I are saying today, Rick, is that basically it’s going to be a dead end unless you work collaboratively with that highest level, open-ended, ultimate goodness consciousness that we know is the way, the source, God, creator, oneness. And if we don’t do that, then that path will be necessarily a dead end.
Rick: Speaking of the future, it’s altogether possible that people will be watching this interview hundreds of years from now. What’s your best guess about how the coming years, decades, centuries are going to roll out?
Cynthia: It’s going to be a surprise. That’s where I agree with Terence McKenna. You know, he talked about, he studied the I Ching and he said, I don’t agree with him about a lot of things, but that I think he’s right about. And he was certainly a wonderful orator and speaker. So, basically, it looks like surprise is always the way that we learn best. So, if we do something that we can already sort of foretell, like, ah, that’ll be boring, then we’re not going to go there. So, we’ll be taking a series of twists and turns that are unpredictable from any point that we’re in so far, but ultimately it will take us to a place where we rediscover some of the basic truths that we’ve temporarily forgotten, and some of them have to do with really respecting others and connecting from our hearts, really getting to that core level of really relating with a plant, with an animal, with a person, with great reverence, and recognizing that that’s the key to everything. I see that in the future, years to come, our technology, it looks to me like it’ll still be there. I’m not, when I look forward and get a sort of a precognitive view of things, it looks like we’re not going to have a complete Stone Age crash. Some people say that that’s inevitable, but I sure hope not. I think that we’ll be keeping our technology, we’ll be learning from it. I think it looks like there will be a series of adjustment periods where a lot of people that have a lot of hubris learn things, and that takes time. So, it looks like there’ll be, I know it’s kind of nebulous, but I can’t really tell. I mean, I don’t get a lot of specifics when I look at the future. It feels like it’s going to be still a planet, still habitable. I’m not sure about the Mars colony. I know Elon wants to go there. I’m not sure about that. I’m not sure I see that. Not right away. I know he’s bent on that.
Rick: Yeah, it would take a lot to make Mars habitable. How about making Earth habitable, or having it continue to be habitable? Make sure we got that taken care of. I mean, I guess he’s thinking of, you know, if we had an asteroid strike or something, it could wipe out humanity, so we better have a plan B. But, you know, ecological devastation is much more likely than an Earth-killer asteroid. So, you know, we can… and that’s more or less in our hands. Even the asteroid is in our hands, if we can… you know, they’re working on ways of shooting those down before they hit the Earth. But anyway, yeah. So anyway, so your answer to that question is, you know, not a lot of specifics in terms of technologies and this and that, but that, you know, you feel that we’ll be a much more kind of conscious, attuned to nature type of species that is more like in a symbiotic relationship with plants and animals and everything else.
Rick: Yes. So, if you’re familiar with the Hopi prophecy rock, it’s more going in the direction of staying in, you know, keeping our hearts open and staying connected to the plants, animals, and each other with reverence, with awareness that that matters. I know that there’s that transhumanist agenda toward the singularity and so forth, but I’m not a fan of that.
Rick: What do they say? The transhumanists, well, the Hopi prophecy rock shows something. It shows two paths. It shows the creator. I don’t know if you’re familiar with the stone itself, but it’s a very ancient rock, and it’s part of the Hopi mythology that the creator was basically showing the people how to live when the world comes to an end. And they said we’re in the fourth world, we’ll be moving into the fifth. The world has ended three times already. One time was a flood, there was another time was fire and so forth. I wrote a paper, an article about this for a magazine. I’m trying to remember the name of it. Parabola magazine. And so, the article was Tunatiava, or I think the article was “comes true, being hoped for,” but I was talking about the language that the Hopi use, which is Tunatia or Tunatiava, which means “comes true, being hoped for.” And I got into that because I’m researching mind-matter interaction and what do the indigenous people know, and the Hopi know about this. But their prophecy rock is fascinating because the stone shows down in the lower left, there’s a creator who’s basically talking to humans and then the people have these two lines. The upper line kind of goes up, up, up with these little robotic-looking humans and then they vanish into the cloud. Literally. And then the ones that stay close to the Earth, it may seem like they have struggles, they’re working with plants and animals, but they’re staying humble and they’re staying connected. That path continues on. And that was the advice. It’s written in stone that there will come a time when the two paths can diverge. And to me, it looks like we’re at that point. We’ve got the transhumanist path with going, uploading consciousness into the cloud and being…
Rick: Oh, that whole thing. Ray Kurzweil and all that.
Cynthia: Yes. I saw Kurtzweil talking about this at Stanford University back 23 years ago in 2000, and I was amused because the sound system kept breaking apart. He was talking about how great this vision was going to be, but the microphones kept failing.
Rick: Yeah. I mean, that whole idea seems to presuppose that we don’t survive our bodily death, and they’re looking for a sort of electronic way of surviving bodily death, you know, uploading our personality to the cloud or something like that. But it’d be a heck of a lot easier to just get reincarnated, wouldn’t it?
Cynthia: Yes. Well, it’s not just easier. To me, it feels more reverent, it feels more humble, it’s got all the higher quality, like going with the flow quality.
Rick: Yeah, more in line with the way things actually work.
Rick: Which has been going on for all eternity.
Cynthia: Right. If it’s not broken, don’t fix it kind of thing. Right. So I’m a fan of that. That’s why I tend to have a bias when I look at the future, to see what I would call “rev humanism.” I like that word. I like to have an alternative. Otherwise, it’s just like, “Not transhumanism.” So I came up with “rev humanism” to be this indigenous view of let’s bring the buffalo back, let’s bring plants and animals back, let’s bring harmony and balance back, and trust one another, trust ourselves to communicate with our hearts and with our fullness of ourselves, and with the awareness that when we work in this imaginal realm, we can do great things or we can do great damage, so let’s do great things. Let’s work together to collectively ask, “How good can it get?”
Rick: Yeah. My next interview is going to be with Jill Bolte-Taylor.
Cynthia: Ah, yes.
Rick: I’m listening to her new book now, which is called “Whole Brain Living,” and it’s very interesting. She talks about how we have these sort of four different anatomical structures in the brain, two in the left hemisphere, two in the right, and they’re responsible for our having four different rather distinct personalities. And when she had her stroke, all of a sudden she was just unbounded awareness, one with the cosmos, but she couldn’t speak or function or dial a phone or do anything in the actual world. And then over eight years of rehabilitation, she regained those abilities. But in any case, she feels that the full development of each of these four components of the brain and their corresponding personalities is the future of human evolution. And I guess I’m saying this partly as an introduction to that interview, but it also pertains to, I think, our discussion.
Cynthia: It does.
Rick: Because we’re all sort of partial in the development of whatever model you want to use. We’re all partially developed and growing. And in some cases, there are great dichotomies between certain very laudable qualities that a person may have and certain reprehensible ones, and you wonder somehow how the two could live in the same body or the same mind. But holistic development, I think, is the direction of the future, both for individuals and for the world, which is what you were implying in your answer. It would be a holistically developed human being or collection of human beings who would be able to retain their technological knowledge, and yet be in harmony with nature in all the different ways that that could be done.
Cynthia: And that interaction, the empathy with other plants, animals, and people, and the earth matters so much. And that seems like the part that most of us are–I’m certainly still working on it. When I look at the three questions that the angels asked me, they were pointing things out, and my empathy seemed to be lacking to me now. When I look back at it, like, oh, that was bad, not having the heartfelt centeredness that I feel like I’ve developed through this lifetime so far. And I think all of us here are working on that, working on the empathy with other people, other animals. I had that incident in my garden recently, a couple years ago. I saw there was a big snarl of flammable materials stuck up in my cedar tree, so I was using a hose, thinking I’ll just blast that down. And then a very wet, kind of annoyed squirrel emerged from–
Rick: Oh, that was his house?
Cynthia: I was like, oh, my gosh, it’s her nest. Oh, my gosh. And then she just looked over her shoulder at me with this look of, what on earth are you thinking? And I was like, oh, my gosh. [Laughter] And it was such a clear communication. It was unmistakable, and it was almost like a human kind of an expression. And I thought, oh, good heavens. And it was no words required. It was just the look on her face. And I thought, oh, dear. I’ve just completely doused the whole nest. I didn’t know that was a nest. It looked like a flammable snarl of materials. [Laughter] But I think that’s such a key thing. It’s like recognizing that must be one of the four parts of the brain, the empathy, connecting with others, reaching out, and knowing that we’re always part of something much bigger and that we’re working together much more than we realize, and at much more refined, subtle levels as well. And that’s something that I think the shamans are definitely aware of and the indigenous wisdom keepers that are so much a part of steering things for the planet and for our future, even if they don’t talk about what they’re doing, they’re the ones that are setting the direction for us all.
Rick: Yeah. So I think you’ve alluded to this, but in conclusion, what are you working on now? What’s your next book? What do you hope to be working on in the coming years?
Cynthia: Yeah, I’m in the slow, steady editing process for a book about the Mandela Effect Society and its society, so it’s really all about exactly this, where we’re headed next, the science of the Mandela Effect. There’ll be an appendix of all the scientific terms and the ideas, such as how quantum Zeno effect ties in with locking in a desired reality. And then some of the words and terminology that people commonly use when they talk about the Mandela Effect, such as just things that they call things like a Smith effect, which has–it’s referring to the movie “The Matrix,” where the Smith was part of the AI system. So you’ll see sometimes people taking the download where you’ll be asking them, “Have you noticed this Mandela Effect?” And they might say they did, but then they suddenly revert to what the mainstream collective consciousness says. And it’s such a fascinating thing to observe, to watch it happen in action. And I’ll be sharing some of these stories about my personal life, about the history of the Mandela Effect, a lot of the authors involved, the science involved, and then where we’re going collectively. Where is this taking us? What’s it really about? But it’s a big book, and it’s taking years to put it together. And things keep unfolding. There’s more research being done. University professors are now studying the Mandela Effect, and some interesting research is coming out.
Rick: That’s great. That’ll be interesting. So I take it that you’re a very optimistic person.
Rick: Yeah, and I am too. I mean, I’m not unrealistic. I realize there’s a lot of horrible stuff happening in the world, but I’m optimistic in the big picture and in the long run.
Cynthia: Yeah, I think there’s a lot to be said for aiming where you want to go. And this intentionality of focusing on where we’d like to see ourselves is much more powerful than we realize, and there really is a ripple effect. So people watching you and I talking about this, that might just make a small change in the people that are watching this, and then they can then carry that peace, that calmness, that optimism into the world. And it has a very powerful effect, much bigger than we realize when we’re incarnated in our regular, typical daily lives.
Rick: Oh, I really think it does. I mean, if everybody in the world just thought, “Oh, we’re all screwed. We’re going to hell in a handbasket. There’s no hope,” then there wouldn’t be.
Cynthia: That’s true.
Rick: You have to realize that something is possible and then do the steps that would be needed to achieve it, and then chances are you will. There’s at least a much greater chance than if you just thought nothing can be done.
Cynthia: Absolutely. It seems obvious to say it that way, but it’s funny how many people overlook that in daily lives. It’s something we can start turning around to just observing thoughts, and if people find themselves feeling negative about something, definitely ask how good can it get. Even if it seems like a joke, like, “You’ve got to be kidding. That’s a complete disaster.” Ask it anyway.
Rick: I often think that while doing these interviews, because like you were saying, when you were five years old you thought of jumping in front of a car. And I often think, and we’ve actually had feedback from people saying that this, listening to these interviews, changed their mind about committing suicide. And it’s very heartening to hear something like that. But I always have this feeling like, like you say, how good can it get? There’s so much possibility for life being so fantastic. No matter what it may seem to be like right now, and I know that from my own experience, from where I started out when I was a messed up teenager, that I just really always want to somehow beat the drum of, you know, have hope and do the things that are necessary to actualize that hope.
Cynthia: I’m so glad you’re doing that. It makes a huge difference in the world, and I feel so blessed to be on the show with you, and so grateful that you invited me.
Rick: Well, thanks. It’s like the best thing.
Cynthia: Yeah, I just took a look at your website for a few seconds, and when Irene brought it, Irene chooses the guest, but she said, “What do you think about this lady?” And I thought, “Oh, this looks interesting. Yeah, let’s do it.” And I really enjoyed your book, so keep them coming.
Cynthia: Will do.
Rick: The book that I really enjoyed, for those listening, was called “Quantum Jumps,” and it’s available, I’m sure, through all the usual book places. I’ll provide links to your books on your page on BatGap.
Cynthia: Perfect. And it was a very interesting read.
Cynthia: Thank you. Well, it means a lot coming from you.
Rick: And you have a podcast, so I’m sure that’s interesting, too.
Cynthia: Absolutely. It’s on Dream Vision 7 Radio Network, but it’s on lots of other podcast places.
Rick: Yeah, you want to make sure to get it on iTunes and all that stuff, because some of these podcast things are rather obscure.
Cynthia: They can be, yes.
Rick: And if you can, make it video as well as audio and put it on YouTube. You’ll more than double your audience.
Cynthia: Right. Well, I’ve got my YouTube channel, but I haven’t quite gotten all of that going. But one of these days.
Cynthia: Good advice.
Rick: Just use Zoom. It’s not that hard.
Rick: All right, thanks. And thanks to those who are listening or watching. And we’ll see you for the next one, which, as I said, will be Jill Bolte-Taylor. I think that’s going to be fascinating. And then there’s another one after her. Jeff Carrera is after her. And then after that, this brain scientist guy wrote a book called No Self, No Problem. Chris Niebuyer. So we have a couple of brain science interviews coming up. Do you know, Chris?
Cynthia: Yeah. Oh, that’s going to be great. You’re going to love it.
Rick: Yeah. I love doing this. I learn so much. Talking to all these people and reading their books and everything is really fun.
Cynthia: Yeah, awesome.
Rick: Okay, so thanks, Cynthia. And we will be in touch. Thanks to those who have been listening or watching.
Cynthia: Thank you.