“The scientists who have developed the case for intelligent design have begun to overcome the prejudice against their ideas and have published their work in peer-reviewed scientific journals, books, conference volumes and anthologies.” — Stephen Meyer, PhD, Signature in the Cell
I’m Johanna Fujiwara, Ph.D.
Years ago, I inspired Talmage to write fiction. He tries to think of me as a character he created. Nothing could be further from the truth.
I look a little like the artist, Promise Tamang Phan, the way she’s painted herself in this video. Actually I’m not as pretty as she, but try telling that to Talmage. My legs are short for my height and my calves are too thick. I call them “daikon ashi” which means “white-radish legs.” Short legs run in my family on my Dad’s side, but they skipped my little brother. Well, he’s big now. Sixteen.
Unless you’re a theoretical physicist, I don’t expect you to believe this, and if you are, you might disagree all the more, but beyond the Universe lie similar Universes, potentially an infinite number, though the heavens aren’t crowded.
As a result, virtually everything that could happen does happen somewhere.
That includes me and every detail of my life.
True, I can’t prove that in a laboratory, but I’m hardly ever wrong. It’s a matter of record.
What’s unusual, I guess, is the fact that I’ve figured out enough to sense what my “coincidental” writer is thinking and feeling. I know when he’s trying to pretend I’m not real. And when he’s honest with himself, he knows I know.
I choose to think of myself as antifragile, a girl with plenty to gain and little to lose. Believe it or not, this quality is the basic human condition. You have it. Antifragility is the difference between biological and supra-biological minds, assuming they exist. There’s decent evidence. I think our ability to gain from many small failures is the reason they’ve come here, assuming they have.
In veiled crafts.
The nature of identity is elusive. Talmage thinks the girl he’s been writing about all these years has always been me because his feelings never change for her.
Could be. But I know this – the seeds of love and meaning are free will and identity. I’m barely nineteen, but I can tell this applies beyond spacetime and the “God of Spinoza.”
Past the sub-infinite hosts of Universes, there’s reality outside of space and time. In third grade I was sent to the principal’s office for talking about it. They said we don’t talk religion in public school.
I couldn’t understand what was religious about it…
Light travels outside of time, but inside of space.
Einstein’s time dilation gives us a number divided by zero when anything moves at the speed of light. If you avoid the myopic logic of mathematicians who apply our internal speed limit to regions beyond…
Dividing by zero yields infinity. Inertial frameworks become irrelevant.
Which means a “wristwatch” on the ground goes infinitely fast compared to a “wristwatch” on a photon.
“Infinitely fast” means that the entire history of the Universe goes by in an instant when you move at the speed of light. Even if you’re a photon of light yourself, or some other fundamental wave-particle.
Hence the irrelevance of time to the diffraction pattern of light crossing slits, one photon at a time. (Here’s a video of that.)
Physicists in your universe think photons and their class have a separate reality. That’s adorable, but wave-particles don’t contain mind, they’re composed of mind. Literally. From a photon’s perspective, all history happens in a moment – in one Planck time.
So when photons, from our perspective, go through slits in single file, things are different to them. They see themselves as all passing through together, bumping shoulders and interfering with each other to give a diffraction pattern that would be supernatural if time were uniform and it were impossible to go outside of it.
My physics teacher told me to shut up when I mentioned this in class. He mumbled it through his teeth, but everyone heard. A red-headed guy behind me said, “Yeah, please!”
School’s no place for critical thinking. They hate it. They love their own dogmas.
From the center of a black hole and the mind of a photon, all history is an infinite holographic snapshot where time means nothing to the diffraction pattern of slit experiments. From there, our unpredictable decisions are known. But it’s not “foreknowledge” because the “fore” of foreknowledge is relative to the observer. One person’s foreknowledge is another’s “after” knowledge, depending on which side of the spacetime horizon you occupy.
That means free will is not an illusion! Please believe me. This point is crucial for your happiness.
Light is “outside of time” or independent of it. But we see light so it’s not “outside of space.”
Dark matter is protomatter that sits virtually outside of space. Its only detectable property from our side is gravity, yet it shapes and positions the galaxies, so it’s “inside of time.” (Here’s a video on that.)
When I was an undergrad, a journal rejected a paper I wrote on dark matter. The editor didn’t mention my paper in his rejection. I was simply not a Ph.D., therefore my paper, my brain, my soul, my existence were unfit for his journal: “Welcome to the cult, Johanna.”
Albert Einstein’s first four papers of 1905 would be similarly unfit for today’s journals. Forget the “miracle year” for space, time, matter and energy. Einstein wouldn’t have had the credentials for these elite morons we’re dealing with today.
The human mind lies partly inside and partly outside of space and time. Miss this, and materialistic determinism will swallow you whole, leaving you convinced that you have no freedom. No choices in anything. You’re a machine with a future set in stone, sweetened by a sprinkle of chance and the “illusion of consciousness” with its “false sense” of free will.
Not a happy place, but it’s the ditch into which our educated subculture has fallen. Call it science, but it’s not. It’s an emotion-based philosophy that, combined with the effects of modern wheat, brings us an ugly stat: 30% of college students are depressed.
The neurons that brought puritanical fundamentalism to the United States have now embraced materialistic determinism and made it the new religion of meaninglessness.
It’s a strange religion that excludes the mind. The fundamental assumption is that matter and energy exist on their own, but nothing else does. All minds are derived from the material world which is mindless, therefore our minds have no reality. The evidence from quantum mechanics has to be ignored to maintain their assumption, but that’s no problem for these zealots. A mindless universe is assumed with the confidence of a Baptist preacher.
I argued this with a brilliant atheist over coffee at Starbucks. It probably wasn’t a date, but he asked to meet me there, so maybe it was – my first date, in fact. When we landed on neo-Darwinism and he saw that I could argue intelligently against it from genetics he hadn’t read, he remembered he’d forgotten something and had to leave.
“We should do this again,” he said.
We never did. He was handsome, if that matters.
The mechanics of the mind lie within space and time (in and around the brain) but free will exists outside of space. By residing outside of space, free will inserts itself as an untouched cause into the web of destiny that fills the material, pool-table Universe.
By residing inside of time, free will remains relevant to history as it unfolds at various changing rates within spacetime.
I haven’t seen where identity lies. Talmage hopes it’s like free will: outside of space but inside of time. That way I’ll always be the same girl, Johanna, no matter what changes.
I think he’s right. I think someday we’ll meet for coffee, because, despite separation, my Universe is remarkably similar to yours. I don’t know why.
I was born in Castle Medical Center on Oahu, Hawaii – one of the few things I can’t remember.
Eleven great years later I killed my brother’s therapy animal, Moody. I wish I could forget the whole thing. I have recurring fight dreams about it. Nightmares, really.
Moody was a chimpanzee. Mom and Daddy were out. I was the sitter. What could possibly go wrong?
James was in his bedroom playing with Moody, pretending to snatch off Moody’s nose and then show it to him. Moody always played along and seemed to tolerated it well, but this time I think James punched the little guy’s face during the nose theft.
I didn’t see that part, but I heard a noise and got up to see what was going on.
Moody’s face was unlike anything I’d seen in real life. It was twisted in rage and looked like a monster. He attacked James, threw him against the wall, denting the plaster. He grabbed James again, threw him to the floor like a rag, jumped on his chest and bit his nose. Pulses of my brother’s blood squirted into the air. Moody spun around and glared at me, then grabbed James’ genitals and tried to pull them off. James screamed like he was dying, and something cold landed inside me. I felt it in my chest as I charged at Moody, shot my right arm around his neck as fast as a cobra, then locked a triangle with my left arm. I pushed my face against the back of his head to protect my eyes from his fingers, held my breath and squeezed with all my strength.
I don’t know how I knew that move. I never watched MMA. I’d never heard of a rear naked choke. I don’t see how it could have been me, honestly.
I was so angry my brain changed perspectives. It sounds crazy, I know, but I swear I was looking down at the three of us from above our heads.
I didn’t loosen my grip for the longest time.
James started yelling at me to stop, but I wouldn’t. Moody went limp, but I kept the choke on him with every bit of force I had. I felt as if I hated Moody and everything about him. But I loved him. We all did.
Finally my muscles couldn’t squeeze for another second. I relaxed my arms but still wouldn’t let go. I was afraid he would spring up and kill us. As I finally started releasing him, he slumped forward and I dropped him face first on the floor. He lay there like one of James’ stuffed animals.
There’s a saying that if you murder someone, you’ll always feel like an outsider looking in on humanity.
It’s true. Even if you murder someone who’s not considered human. Even if it starts out with you trying to save your little brother’s life.
In the emergency room, my scalp needed stitches. Most of my hair was gone. Pulled out, roots and all. I looked like a boy for the longest time. Girls around the island shaved their heads to honor me, Mom said.
One of the ER doctors told my mom that Moody must have been sick. A heart condition, probably, because there was no way a little girl could strangle a healthy adolescent chimpanzee. The doctor said an ape’s muscles are way stronger gram-for-gram than a human’s. The genetic code is identical, but parts of our code are now inverted, as if deliberately taken off-line. Nature does strange things, he said, no curiosity in his voice. None at all. I just don’t get that. I hope I never do.
But really, Moody was healthy. He was stronger by far than anyone else I’ve dealt with.
The truth is, I had an unfair advantage. I’m a descendant of Miyamoto Musashi, the Samurai. The legend.
No one knew. I didn’t. Growing up in Hawaii, I was a “hapa girl.” Hapa means “half” in Hawaiian.
I’m half Japanese, and I thought I was half white – until I got to the University of Hawaii.
At UH I discovered how badly some people are offended if you’re half Jewish and you think that makes you half white.
It happened in front of the biochemistry class. We had to pronounce our names for the professor. I was in the second row. When my turn came, I stood with my back to most of the class.
“I’m Johanna Fujiwara,” I said, and stood tall, proud to be the class prodigy.
He peered at me over the tops of his reading glasses. “You must be hapa,” he said warmly. “Your name’s Japanese, what’s the other half?”
“White,” I said.
He chuckled. “Can you be less specific? Scottish, Irish, Dutch… what?”
“My mother’s Jewish,” I said.
The warmth left him. “Jews aren’t white,” he growled, but caught himself and forced a smile. “You’d almost think some of them were. Makes you wonder. Well, young lady, clearly you’ve got a lot to learn. Have a seat.” The guys behind me laughed.
I felt flushed and humiliated. How was it possible that I didn’t even know my own racial composition? I stuck my tongue out at the professor, just the tiniest bit, but it was enough to notice.
“She stuck her tongue out!” a guy in the first row said, and howled. The whole class laughed at me, professor and all.
I buried my head in my arms wishing I could disappear or hit replay, go back and lie about being half Jewish. In fact, I did hit replay a hundred times that day in my head, but nothing ever changes when you do that.
Three weeks later I ruined the curve on the first test. I always do that in the tougher classes, but this time I felt good about it. Glad to redeem myself and show them how much I really knew.
The professor had the usual tough choice. He could give one A with the next highest grade a C -, flunking the rest of the class, he could make the next test ten times easier, or he could throw my scores out and redo the curve.
On the first test he gave me the only A, and told the class to buckle down. I guess he was proud of his tough reputation. Proud to routinely flunk a bunch of depressed students, thinking that cruelty somehow helped him make his way in the Universe.
After the second test he changed his tune. He said that I was an “outlier.” He isolated my score.
Then he said there was no reason to think of “this ten-year old kid” as a cut-throat.
He damn well knew my name, Johanna Fujiwara. But he wouldn’t say it.
He did say that he didn’t want to hear the term, “cut-throat” applied to “this poor little girl.”
The class cheered. Their grades would be recalculated and catapulted up several notches. They wanted to know if this new fairness would be applied to the first test retrospectively.
“Yeah, I supposed so,” the professor said, giving in.
I’d never been called a cut-throat before that day, but afterwards I heard it a lot. They shortened it to, “the throat,” as in, “The throat’s taking P-chem from Thompson. Better go with Bobst.”
You know, if you find the right phrase, you can dehumanize anyone. Ask Viktor Frankl. He said he found meaning in his suffering at Auschwitz, and everyone can find the meaning of their own lives if they search.
To me, life’s meaning starts by convincing your subconscious mind that it has a free will. For college students, that’s a tall order, but here’s the deal:
You get up off your butt and do something small and deliberate for yourself right now, and work up to doing these simple things all through every day. Instead of looking around the room for your next move, or letting something on your computer screen decide your next activity for you, close your eyes and think: What will I do next? Make the decision, then do it immediately.
Eventually it starts to feel natural to allow your world to fit you, rather than allowing your world to manipulate you and steal your free will. That’s depressing to your subconscious mind who begins to feel imprisoned in your skull.
I graduated number one in my class – just two years after seeing my one and only glimpse of antisemitism. I guess that’s what it was.
But I’m not Japanese or Jewish inside. I’m hapa. To me, “hapa” doesn’t mean “half” anything, it means fully human.
That’s my highest goal, anyway, to be fully human, no longer outside looking in at the real people.
M. Talmage Moorehead
If you’d like to read this story without clicking in and out of the chapters and fighting their reverse order, it starts here as a “single-page” scrolling document.
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Thank you, I appreciate your help.