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Martinus answers

About time- and space-dimensional sensory perception, materialism

What does one understand by time- and space-dimensional sensory perception, and does sensory perception exist which is not time- and space-dimensional?

By time- and space-dimensional sensory perception is to be understood the daily direct physical or material sensory perception. All details that we experience here represent space, which means that they have a place; they likewise express time, which is the same as age. Whom or what we perceive through direct physical sensory perception takes up space and has an age. Here all sensory objects without exception have a beginning and an end. All solutions based on this form of sensory perception do not give us any direct information at all about anything other than what represents place and time. But, as everything which represents place and age or space and time is, as previously mentioned, subject to a beginning and an end, and is therefore transitory, one can through time- and space-dimensional sensory perception sense only everything that is transitory. This form of sensory perception and its results are therefore termed “Materialism”. And people who can perceive only with this form of sensory perception are therefore termed “Materialists”, which means that they deny all the eternal solutions such as the immortality of the living being, the justice and love of the universe, and the existence of an eternal source to this, a Providence, a Godhead or Universal Father.

Similarly, it is also totally impossible through materialistic or physical sensory perception to experience directly the reality behind the eternal words “Everything is very good”; “What a man sows shall he also reap”; “Without being born anew of water and the spirit one cannot enter the kingdom of God”; “Blessed are the pure of heart; they shall see God”; “You should love your neighbour as yourself; this is the fulfilment of all the laws” and so on. Direct material sensory perception shows nothing whatsoever of such solutions. On the contrary, it shows to the very highest degree mortality, transitoriness, injustice. Indeed, it almost shows it to be a fact that everything happens by chance. This materialistic sensory perception gives no information whatsoever about morality beyond this – that everyone is for himself. He who does not defend himself in life, he who is not physically the strongest must succumb. And thus it becomes a hopeless world of darkness and death which is perceived directly through purely materialistic sensory perception.

But gradually, as Man develops in a higher intellectual, humane direction, it becomes impossible for him to accept that this hopeless world panorama of darkness and death should be the final solution of the mystery of life. And with this attitude and with evolution, an entirely new sensory horizon behind the physical, materialistic one begins to open up. It is on this sensory horizon that the eternal solutions and thereby the perfect world picture are experienced. It is this experience which constitutes “cosmic consciousness” and is mentioned in the Bible as “the spokesman, the holy spirit” through which mankind will come to the perfect perception of the eternal truth existing beyond time and space.

First published in Contact Letter no. 23/1951
Translation: Mary McGovern, 1988
Published in the English edition of Kosmos no. 5/19882

© Martinus Institut 1981,
May be reproduced stating the copyright and the source of the material.