The Eternally Cyclical Cosmos: Avoiding Ultimate Origins

By many accounts, both ancient and modern, the quest to understand the primordial origin of all reality remains one of humanity’s most profound unanswered questions. Did the universe as we know it emanate from nothing? Was it created by a supernatural deity? Or has it simply existed eternally in one state or another, without any true “beginning” in the conventional sense?

This final perspective, of an eternally cyclical cosmos constantly transitioning between differing expansive and contractive phases or forms, offers an intriguing alternative paradigm to the philosophical puzzles surrounding ultimate origins and first causes. While having ancient philosophical roots, it also finds some resonances with speculative modern cosmological models. Perhaps most compellingly, it circumvents the seemingly paradoxical assertions of creatio ex nihilo (creation from nothing) and the need for an uncaused first cause, be it a divine creator or an initial singularity.

The Conundrum of Beginnings
Much of the consternation around cosmic origins stems from the apparent paradoxes or infinite regresses that arise when attempting to rationally conceptualize an absolute first event, source or cause. For the universe to have simply spontaneously begun to exist from absolute literal nothingness – no space, time, matter, energy or laws – is a proposition that strains rational credibility. As the philosophical axiom states, ex nihilo nihil fit: out of nothing, nothing comes. And yet, many interpretations of the Big Bang theory and its predecessors like the theological doctrine of creation ex nihilo appear to require such notions.

Similar difficulties arise when considering the premise of a supernatural, transcendent force like God as the uncaused first cause that created the physical universe. For such an entity to be truly eternal, uncaused, and productive of all other reality, it seems to require the same tenuous conceptual move of self-actualizing from a prior state of non-being or nothingness. Additionally, attributing a divine mind or consciousness as the origin of all matter, energy and natural laws presents other philosophical challenges.

The Eternal Return
An alternative paradigm is to eschew searching for an absolute originating event, cause or Creator, and instead envision an eternally existential cosmos constantly engaged in perpetual cycles of death and rebirth, contraction and expansion across cosmic phases or eras. In this view, the observable universe as we know it emanates not from nothing, nor from a Creator ex nihilo, but rather from a preceding cycle, epoch or state of cosmic evolution – one of the infinite phoenix-like permutations of the universe’s eternal existential flux.

Such ideas have their roots in ancient Greek and Asian philosophies and creation myths that envisioned the cosmos engaged in infinite cycles of generation, degeneration and regeneration – be it the Stoic concept of eternal recurrence, the cyclical cosmological eras of Hinduism, or the cosmic phoenix of ancient Egypt. While the specific dynamics varied, these worldviews held the created order was preceded and succeeded by prior and subsequent epochs, without any true origination ex nihilo.

Intriguingly, some speculative traits of eternal cosmic cycles find reflections in certain modern cosmological hypotheses. Oscillating universe models envision the current expansionary phase giving way to an eventual contraction, followed by a “big rebound” back into cosmic expansion. The multiverse theory permits eternal cycles of parallel universes budding from one another across vast stretches of time and higher dimensional membranes. Even within the mathematical formulations of general relativity and quantum cosmological models, transitioning between different cosmic eras or phases becomes more plausible than a stark delineation between something and absolute nothingness.

Of course, the eternal cosmos perspective also faces conceptual challenges – if the observable universe emerged from a preceding cycle or epoch, what set the primordial dynamics and substances of that first cycle in motion? Can something truly be considered eternal if it undergoes substantial metamorphoses across the eons? Yet in avoiding the seemingly harder paradoxes of creatio ex nihilo and the need for an absolute first temporal cause or uncaused cause, the paradigm of cosmic recurrence warrants thorough examination.

The quest to rationally grapple with the ultimate origin or beginnings of all reality will likely remain one of humanity’s most enduring ontological mysteries. While different philosophical and metaphysical frameworks offer varying perspectives, each seems to face self-imposed limitations or paradoxes.

Whether our universe was brought forth ex nihilo, divinely created, or sprang forth from some initial Big Bang singularity, the philosophical problems of absolute first cau

Faith in the Unknown: A New Look at God, Science, and Philosophy

For centuries, science, faith, and philosophy have been seen as separate realms. Science studies the how, faith contemplates the why, and philosophy bridges the gap. But what if they could be interwoven?

Imagine a belief system that embraces the vastness revealed by science – a universe older than imaginable, governed by elegant laws. This universe, however, could still be imbued with a creative force, a source of existence some call God.

Philosophy, then, can help us interpret this reality. Perhaps consciousness, a marvel yet to be fully explained by science, is a hint of something more, a connection to the divine.

Jesus’ message of love and compassion aligns beautifully with this perspective. Love, after all, is a powerful force that binds us together. Perhaps it’s a fundamental principle woven into the fabric of existence.

This new way of believing doesn’t require blind faith or disregard for reason. It embraces the mystery of existence, the awe-inspiring reality revealed by science, and the human quest for meaning. It’s a faith that seeks understanding, not just acceptance, a journey that integrates science, faith, and philosophy into a cohesive exploration of the universe and our place within it.

Marginal Satisfaction

A framework for a coherent economic strategy built on margin satisfaction, stakeholder economy, and ethical principles:

Core Values:

Margin Satisfaction: Economic activities should aim to create value for all stakeholders (employees, customers, investors, community, environment) without diminishing the well-being of any one group.

Stakeholder Economy: Businesses have a responsibility to consider the impact of their decisions on all stakeholders, not just shareholders.
Golden Rule & Ethical Principles: Economic interactions should be guided by ethical principles such as fairness, compassion, and reciprocity (treating others as you wish to be treated).

Strategic Pillars:

Sustainable Practices: Businesses should operate in a way that is environmentally and socially responsible, considering long-term consequences of their actions.
Shared Prosperity: Economic growth should be inclusive, leading to a more equitable distribution of wealth and opportunities.

Employee Well-being: Businesses should invest in their employees’ well-being, offering fair wages, safe working conditions, and opportunities for growth.

Community Focus: Businesses should be active members of their communities, contributing to local development and social good.
Transparency and Accountability: Businesses should be transparent about their activities and accountable to all stakeholders.

Policy and Implementation:

Government Incentives: Policies like tax breaks or subsidies could encourage businesses to adopt stakeholder-oriented practices.
Consumer Power: Consumers can support businesses that align with their values and hold others accountable.

Socially Responsible Investment (SRI): Investors can direct their capital towards companies that demonstrate a commitment to stakeholder well-being.
Education and Awareness: Education about ethical economics and stakeholder capitalism can promote a cultural shift towards a more just and sustainable economic system.

Challenges and Considerations:

Balancing Interests: Finding the right balance between the needs of different stakeholders can be complex.
Measuring Progress: Developing metrics to measure the success of a stakeholder-based economy is essential.

Global Cooperation: Implementing these strategies effectively might require international cooperation to ensure a level playing field.

Inspiration from Faith Traditions:

Golden Rule: This principle of treating others as you wish to be treated can be applied to economic interactions, fostering fairness and cooperation.
Teachings of Jesus and Buddha: Both emphasize compassion, social justice, and caring for the less fortunate. These principles can guide economic decisions towards a more inclusive and equitable system.

Summary of Employee Ownership Model for Marginal Satisfaction Economy

In order to address the satisfaction of the employee as a key stakeholder the model emphasizes employee ownership, shared prosperity, and long-term focus within a stakeholder economy built on the concept of marginal satisfaction. Here’s a breakdown of the key elements:

Employee Ownership Structure:

  • Non-tradable Shares (35%): All employees receive non-tradable shares, giving them a permanent ownership stake in the company and a vested interest in its long-term success.
  • Tradable Share Pool (10%): A separate pool of tradable shares becomes available to qualified employees after 4 years of employment. The price is set based on the employee’s start date, rewarding loyalty.
  • Top Management Exclusion: Top management (defined by control over 5% of employees or revenue generation and earning 4x the average salary) is excluded from tradable shares but retains non-tradable ownership.

Incentives and Alignment:

  • Long-Term Growth: The share price for tradable shares reflects the company’s long-term growth, incentivizing employees to prioritize sustainable success.
  • Profit Sharing: Top management receives a guaranteed bonus component based on company profits, aligning their interests with overall profitability.
  • Retirement Liquidity: Non-tradable shares become tradable upon retirement, offering employees financial security and a chance to benefit from share value appreciation.

Return of Non-tradable Shares:

  • Vesting Period: A vesting period (e.g., 2 years) can be implemented for non-tradable shares. If an employee leaves voluntarily or is let go within the vesting period, they forfeit their non-tradable shares. After the vesting period, employees retain their non-tradable shares upon departure.
  • Buyback Option: The company may choose to offer a buyback option for non-tradable shares at fair market value, allowing departing employees to receive some financial benefit while maintaining the overall ownership structure.

Overall Benefits:

  • Shared Success: This model fosters a sense of shared ownership, aligning employee interests with company performance at all levels.
  • Long-Term Focus: The structure incentivizes both short-term (tradable shares) and long-term commitment (non-tradable shares), promoting sustainable growth strategies.
  • Fairness and Transparency: The clear ownership structure, profit-sharing mechanisms, and defined rules for non-tradable share returns promote fairness and transparency.

Challenges and Considerations:

  • Market Fluctuations: Employees with tradable shares might face short-term concerns due to market volatility. Clear communication and long-term focus are crucial.
  • Profit Fluctuations: Calibrating the profit-sharing bonus for top management is essential to ensure sustainability during lean periods.

Further Exploration:

  • Metrics for Bonus Structure: Explore metrics beyond just profits for determining the bonus component for non-tradable share employees.
  • Communication Strategies: Develop effective communication strategies to explain the model’s benefits and address employee concerns.
  • Culture of Shared Ownership: Foster a culture where all employees feel invested in the company’s success, regardless of ownership structure.

By addressing these challenges and continuing to refine the model, we can create a system that promotes employee well-being, long-term growth, and a more equitable stakeholder economy built on the principles of marginal satisfaction.

Remember, this is just a starting point. We can refine this framework further by:

Specifying concrete policies and mechanisms: How can we incentivize businesses to adopt stakeholder-oriented practices?

Addressing potential trade-offs: How can we balance economic growth with environmental sustainability and social justice?

Incorporating specific examples: Can we find real-world examples of businesses that are successfully implementing stakeholder capitalism principles?

By working together, we can explore these questions and develop a more concrete plan for an economic system built on margin satisfaction, stakeholder well-being, and ethical principles. This economic strategy has the potential to create a more just, sustainable, and prosperous future for all.