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Meru Foundation eTORUS(tm) Newsletter
Number 15 – 17 September 2003
Copyright 2003 Meru Foundation
Written by Cynthia Tenen

Stan and Cynthia spent July 2003 in California, where for the first time in several years we visited the Los Angeles area. Thanks to friends who organized our stay, and made preliminary introductions of our research to key people, Stan gave a very successful private briefing on the Meru research. Most of the audience had some background in Buddhism or Vedic material, but -- ironically, thanks to the popularity of the "Kabbalah Centre" in LA -- they were prepared to hear that there is also something uniquely valuable in "Jewish knowledge". We were able to show, through the Meru work, that traditional Kabbalistic materials have substance much deeper than the "Kabbalah Centre" teachings, and also contain spiritual insights compatible with -- and complementary to -- the Buddhist and Vedic teachings more familiar to this widely varied audience. The next day, we met privately with one of the "deans" of the Vedic community in the US, whose first comment to us was, "There is no spirituality without mathematics!" (I am reminded of the legendary inscription on the door of the Platonic academy -- "No entry without geometry.") <smile> Stan and I very much appreciated this warm welcome, and look forward to working quietly with this elder statesman to introduce our work to a wider audience.

We were both surprised and pleased by the depth and level of interest in our work that we encountered in Los Angeles. We are making plans to return later this year (or possibly in early 2004) for a more extensive speaking schedule, and to hold private briefings for people who were unable to meet with us in July. We want brief people who are in a position to provide major support for our research, and to speak in venues that attract them. If you would like to help organize this visit to southern California, and/or can arrange meetings with people who could significantly advance our work, please contact me as soon as possible.

During this visit to California we also met with members of Meru Foundation's Advisory Board, including two members of the San Francisco area "Fundamental Physics Group". We are starting a written technical dialog on the Meru thesis, which can be used as a basis for published papers, and also of course to refine areas for further research. On our way back East, we also held another successful private briefing in Sidney, Nebraska (northeast of Denver), organized by a group who originally contacted us over the Internet. Potentially, we could return to the Denver area for a more extensive seminar, as our friends indicated that there would be considerable interest. If you live in the Boulder/Denver/Cheyenne area, and are interested in contacting the organizers of our briefing there, please let me know.

We now have a new title for Stan's forthcoming book on the Meru research: "First Hand: The Geometry of Genesis and the Alphabet". We also have a new editor. Our publisher, North Atlantic Books/Frog Ltd. (Berkeley), has announced this book for Spring 2004, and has expressed an interest in future books as well. Stan and I are confident that we can work with our new editor to produce an intelligent and accessible introduction to the Meru findings.

If we receive sufficient inquiries as a result of this eTORUS, we will contact North Atlantic/Frog Ltd. and arrange a way for you to pre-order "First Hand: The Geometry of Genesis and the Alphabet". Your prepayment for this book will help to support Meru while we create it -- and will ensure that you receive a copy as soon as they're available. If you're interested in helping, and in securing your copy of our forthcoming book, please let me know via email.

Readers frequently ask us whether the letters, or the hand-gestures, have a relationship to sound or color -- and if so, how can it be used to enhance meditation. Many people also ask how the letter-gestures can be used to promote healing, both for one's self and in working with others. These questions focus on the relationship of the Meru findings -- which can seem quite abstract -- to the body, and to ourselves as feeling human beings. We are now working with practitioners in the biomedical sciences and healing arts who can ask clear and specific questions and offer feedback based on their own professional experience.

For the first time, we are exploring body-movements and breathing patterns to go along with the letter-gestures -- one letter at a time, searching for movements that complement the gestures. This is a slow process, and involves cross-checking the experimental body-movements to significant words in Hebrew, to see if the movements add understanding both to the letter-gestures, and to the words. Our study group here in Sharon, MA, has found enough significant "hits" to warrant further exploration of this idea. Stan has worked out the appropriate colors, and tones, for each letter, based on the shape of the "First Hand" model. This is a new -- and necessary -- dimension for our research, and we will report our work in progress here in the eTORUS.

The current US economy has had a severe impact on many non-profit organizations, and Meru Foundation is no exception. Many of our readers -- especially in high-tech fields -- who five years ago had extra cash for worthwhile causes, now are struggling themselves. But there is one way that you, or any reader of this newsletter, can help Meru Foundation gain new support -- and that is by passing along this newsletter, and your own comments about Meru Foundation, to members of other e-lists you participate in.

Also, Meru now accepts PayPal, one of the most widely used secure payment systems on the Internet. A PayPal "Donate Now" button now appears at the top of our home page, www.meru.org . Click the PayPal button, follow their instructions, and make a contribution in any amount you wish. And thank you!

Many of our materials make excellent holiday gifts. Our music CD, First Sound(tm): The Music of Genesis, is both unique and moving, and (at $18.00 plus shipping) is quite affordable.

For a more substantial gift -- or a learning resource for yourself -- we also offer a newly expanded version of the Meru Special Edition Research Sampler. This is a handsome, hand-produced loose-leaf album of Meru posters and articles, printed on high-quality paper and assembled personally by me (Cynthia Tenen). The Special Edition includes materials not publicly available on our website -- or anywhere else -- and is available for $180.00 plus shipping. (It is also available for resale in limited quantities -- please contact me directly at meru@meru.org for details.)

Of course, if you are able to make a contribution to Meru Foundation -- one-time or continuing -- this will benefit our work substantially. Because Meru is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit, contributions are tax-deductible (as per IRS regulations). (Remember, you can use PayPal directly from our home page at www.meru.org .) If you appreciate Meru's research, and will need a tax deduction this year, please consider Meru Foundation as a part of your giving.

Whether you are in a position to purchase materials and make a contribution to Meru this month, or not, you and everyone reading this newsletter can help our research reach its promise by alerting your own e-lists to our work. Point people to www.meru.org and share this (and previous) newsletters and articles with them. Point people to www.meetingtent.com (our secure-server website), and let them know that I am personally available to discuss with them what videos or other materials they might enjoy. Arranging for Stan to be interviewed on the radio can substantially increase our base of support by increasing people's exposure to this work. We are ready to reach out to a wider audience. If you have skills you can volunteer, please email me.

Stan and I thank you all for your help, and your support of Meru's work.

ESSAY BY STAN TENEN: Scientists and Wordsmiths
The title of this month's essay may seem familiar. Several years ago, Stan drafted an essay on the difference in approach of persons trained in the natural sciences, and persons trained in the humanities. Our ideas about these differences, and their consequences for our culture and our world, have matured and evolved. Stan and I have updated and expanded this essay, altered its focus, and re-titled it "Scientists and Wordsmiths." It is now posted it in place of the earlier draft on Meru's website, at http://www.meru.org/science.html . The introductory paragraphs are below.

©2000, 2003 Stan Tenen

From Facing Current Challenges: Essays on Judaism, by Yehudah Levi, as quoted in a book review by Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer in the Fall 2003 issue of Jewish Action, p. 86.

      "To sum up our findings on the Torah's attitude toward secular studies, we must first be aware that a simplistic approach will not suffice. We cannot dispose of the whole issue with a simple "yes" or "no"; instead, we must ascertain precisely what is in question in each case. Generally speaking, the Torah's attitude toward the study of natural science is definitely positive. On the other hand it is negative, or at least reserved, toward study of the humanities based on non-Torah sources. As we have seen, this distinction is based on the difference in the methods used to formulate principles in these disciplines: whereas man was given senses to help him reveal the laws of nature and to test his findings, he has no equivalent faculty enabling him to test his conclusions in the area of the humanities. Thus there is no reliable source of knowledge in this area other than that which God reveals to man -- the Torah given on Mount Sinai (221)."

As a person trained in the physical sciences I have been surprised to find that scholars who are trained in the liberal arts often make very different assumptions about language and communication than I do. Just like a person working in the trades, arts, and crafts of the ancient world, as an experimentalist, I learn by what I see, what I hear, and what I can measure. I manipulate this experience mostly visually, without words, and I express this experience mostly in numbers and especially in abstract relationships - for which I use various formal languages. I rarely think in phonetic sentences when actually doing my work. I know where the next part goes because I can remember seeing it in my mind's eye and I can feel what I am doing as I act. My actions are non-linguistic or pre-linguistic, and confirmed by feedback from the physical world.

Reading and writing phonetic narrative language is relatively new. In the ancient world, people did things. A craftsperson in the ancient world needed a diagram or a map - in pictures - not a string of symbolic letters and words. The picture could be drawn on a skin or woven into a carpet, a part of one's clothing, or a basket. Some feelings and processes are best preserved as music. The woven picture or sound tells the craftsperson what to do or how to feel without words. I would rather someone showed me a picture of a woven basket than told me about it, if they wanted me to make a duplicate. I would rather see a dance performed or see "snapshot" pictures or diagrams of a dance rather than read a description of it, if I wanted to learn to do the dance for myself.

Consider what would happen if a future researcher familiar only with phonetic narrative language were to come upon a computer program written in BASIC - which is a formal computer instruction code written in what seem to be ordinary phonetic-narrative words. Unless the future researcher understood that this was a formal and not a phonetic narrative language, how could they interpret it except to "translate" it as if it were some form of poetry or arcane mythology?

For the remainder of this article, please go to http://www.meru.org/science.html



I hope you enjoy this Meru Foundation eTORUS(tm) Newsletter.

We welcome your comments and suggestions, and would like the opportunity to speak with you personally.

If you have comments or questions, please send an email to Cynthia Tenen at meru@meru.org with your phone number and a good time to call -- or, please call us at 781-784-8902 (Boston area). I would like to brainstorm with you.

Thank you for your interest in the work of the Meru Foundation.

The Meru Foundation eTORUS(tm) Newsletter is copyright 2003 Meru Foundation. All rights reserved.
Past issues of eTORUS(tm) are archived online on the Meru Foundation website at

You may duplicate and pass along this newsletter, in its entirety, as long as you include this copyright notice and the contact information below. Please send comments and questions to <meru@meru.org>.

Meru Foundation research offices:
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