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If Yo is the universe, then isn't Yo just another word for everything? 

No. Yo is the Unknowable Divine Mystery that manifests as our experience of being-in-the-world, that which "generates" our experience of the universe, of everything. In this sense, Yo is quite distinct from "everything." That is to say, Yo is not what we experience. Since we use the word "everything" to refer to the totality of what we experience (or to the totality of what we imagine we could experience given the proper conditions) and Yo, in contrast, cannot be experienced directly, It is clearly not "everything."

And, since all we can know (be aware of, feel, sense) is what we experience, Yo—the source of experience—is unknowable. Yet, even though we cannot know Yo directly, we can know some things about It. For example, we can know that we cannot know Yo directly, that we cannot understand Yo. And we can prove that Yo exists. Beyond that, our knowledge is limited to our experience. Period.

In another sense, Yo does refer to everything . . . sort of. Since all we can know about Yo is Yos Manifestation to us—the "Face of Yo," so to speak, that is "turned toward" us, manifesting as all that we experience—Yos Face is synonymous with "everything" or the "universe." Yet even in this sense, Yo is profoundly different from a word like "everything."












In contrast to words like "Yo" or "God," the word "everything" functions like a pronoun. It is like "he," "she," or "it" in that it loses what is special about what it stands in place of. Furthermore, when religious people (or irreligious scientists, for that matter) contemplate "everything," they often experience religious awe that is clearly referred to by the words like "Yo" (or "God," when used by some modern scientists) but not by the word "everything." Thus, in many ways (for example, see the answer to So what does that mean to me? Why is that important?) the word "Yo" has real meaning beyond "everything," "the world," or "the universe."


The point is that the awe experienced when we confront the miracle of creation is truly fantastic. While some great scientists talk of it, most scientists keep such thoughts to themselves, lest they be ridiculed for being soft minded. Yet, for physicists, for example, the Big Bang is a wall beyond which science is not expected to penetrate: How can we ever explain events before time began? And if there was no time, how could anything happen/change and lead to the Big Bang? When science has reduced things to their basics, we inevitably end up with concepts that are virtually unintelligible (even if mathematically describable and usable in making predictions). The early quantum physicists were palpably upset with the theory they were developing because it didn't (couldn't) make sense! It flies in the face of the ways in which our human psyches were evolved to think; in the most profound way, we cannot understand the essence of what is. (For a fuller explanation of what this means, see How do we know that Yo exists?)

This in no way suggests we are just as well off turning to fantasy religious notions. No. We need a spirituality/religion that is fully consistent with the observations that underly modern science (i.e., with what we perceive as real)—a spiritual worldview that also captures our profound awe of nature—not one that replaces our ignorance and fears with wishful thinking and constructs that contradict empirical reality. This awe filled spirituality—fully consistent with science and empiricism—is what Yo presents.

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind . . .

The religion of the future will be a cosmic religion. The religion which is based on experience, which refuses dogmatism . . .


The most beautiful thing we can experience is the Mysterious — the knowledge of the existence of something unfathomable to us . . .


There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle . . .


There remains something subtle, intangible and inexplicable. Veneration for this force beyond anything that we can comprehend is my religion. (Albert Einstein)

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