The Premise

Just occasionally, throughout history, the greatest spiritual beings, such as the Buddha, achieved, for a few precious seconds… enlightenment. Years of fasting, celibacy, meditation and the utmost commitment allowed great sages such as he to achieve a pattern of neuron firing which allowed consciousness to be boosted to the point that higher levels of reality became visible. Cambridge PhD student Pete Goodshaw doesn’t have time for all that. Besides he’s far too fond of kebabs to attempt years of fasting and celibacy promptly loses its appeal when in the arms of the love of his life, theology professor Sarah. Luckily for Pete, the human brain is digital. A neuron either fires completely, or not at all. Exploiting this fact, our plucky computer geek has developed Phaethon. A machine which models his consciousness, then, through the creation of micro-fields, actively enhances his neuron firing patterns to hold him in a prolonged state of enlightenment. With this visitor’s pass to heaven and the assistance of junior angel Lisa (when she’s not laughing at him), Pete can speak at length with the greatest souls in human history, philosophers and mystics from Neoplatonism, Kabballah, Christianity, Pythagorianism, Hinduism, Manichaeism, Daoism and many other schools. The most interesting thing that he learns (between bouts of social awkwardness)? All these schools tell the same higher truths of reality, just in different ways…

The Author’s Aim

Spiritually and physically, we are what we eat. As above, so below. The philosophical junk food of materialism (belief only in the physical) seems to be on the menu everywhere these days. This blog aims to serve up a tasty, nutritious broth of metaphysical contemplation through syncretism (the fancy word for seeing underlying truths within competing philosophies). The blogs are usually in around five parts and apart from that, can be read in any order. Whilst all blogs are carefully researched, I am no expert on anything posted here, sometimes I put my conclusions in the mouths of great historical or mythical figures, sometimes I have a bit of fun with their personalities as I see humour as an important catalyst of learning and, well, it’s nice to have a laugh. My intention is to encourage the reader to learn about all these truly wonderful and mostly forgotten people and their precious gifts to the world, primarily their signing of the path to heaven, which is that no matter how hard it is, we just have to love each other. In this way, I hope to do my bit to keep the candle in the darkness shining.

The Novel

The blog may leave the reader with many questions some only briefly answered above, who is Pete? How is he able to stroll around heaven? Why does heaven look like a series of earthly environments? Could a machine like Phaethon fall into the wrong hands? What are the consequences of our intrepid hero finding his true love and being successfully seduced by her predatory older sister within the same evening? For the answers, my completed novel, The Virtual Disciple is coming soon. Agents and publishers please feel free to get in touch.