Andre Gaudreault (Gaudwin)
16 min readApr 21, 2024

A Preamble to my Dissertation

Kant proposed a Copernican Revolution ‘in reverse’, saying that: “Up to now it has been assumed that all our cognition must conform to the objects; but … let us once try whether we do not get farther with the problems of metaphysics by assuming that the objects must conform to our cognition.” Wikipedia Immanuel Kant

“…of course, our failures are a consequence of many factors, but possibly one of the most important is the fact that society operates on the theory that specialization is the key to success, not realizing that specialization precludes comprehensive thinking.” Buckminster Fuller’s Operating Manual of Spaceship Earth


The failure of science: Its built-in inability to recognize the


Progress has become maladaptive because it has transformed an economic system initially aligned with a fundamental principle of evolution — Adam Smith viewing profit as an economical means to use individual selfishness for the good of society, as evolution does for species — into an economy viewing profit as a goal. A trickle-down economy that is beneficial to investors and a privileged minority while being detrimental to the rest of the human race and destructive for the whole planet.

Scientists fail to see their roles in that because all their analyses are based on a misunderstanding of the role of progress in evolution. If this weren’t the case, they could define in solvable terms the global problem confronting us as a species, the inevitable and continual destruction of our living environment, and they cannot.

We possess all the necessary resources to address this challenge. However, to use them efficiently, we need to adopt a new perspective on ourselves and our relationship with the living world. This ‘human paradigm shift’ would allow us to harness our existing knowledge to solve the problems progress has inadvertently created.

“Karl Popper defined scientific paradigms as shared belief systems. As science progresses, scientists realize that these beliefs are mostly false and move to a new paradigm.” (Nigel Barber Ph.D. )

For a paradigm shift to become necessary, an anomaly of knowledge concerning a formal system of thought must be recognized. In my dissertation, I will show that the unrecognized anomaly preventing us from solving humanity’s existential crisis is economic progress, due to our inability to see its role in evolution.

Two hundred years ago, Immanuel Kant already acknowledged that humanity needed to undergo such an “idealistic” revolution. However, he was well ahead of his time. He did not develop his theory of human understanding within the context of evolution, as he indeed would have had evolution been established as a fact. And he was unaware of the ill consequences progress would have on the planet.

Today, scientists do not recognize their prominent role in this anomaly, even though they must be becoming increasingly aware of its ill consequences in their everyday lives. However, in their professional lives, their research grants prevent them from seeing the truth about the ultimate side effects of their work. As Michael Lewis already said more briefly about the profiteering Wall Street workers: “They are paid not to see the truth.”

The Dark Side of Corporate Research Khalil Bendib

[I would add at the end after “You can’t miss it!: “ It is situated right behind the selfish-gene statue.”]


“Effective knowledge is professionalised knowledge, supported by a restricted acquaintance with useful subjects subservient to it. … Each profession makes progress, but it is progress in its own groove. … But there is no groove of abstractions which is adequate for the comprehension of human life. Thus in the modem world, …* The leading intellects .[specialists] lack balance. They see this set of circumstances, or that set; but not both sets together. …. In short, the specialised functions of the community are performed better and more progressively, but the generalised direction lacks vision. The progressiveness in detail only adds to the danger produced by the-feebleness of coordination…” (Alfred North Whitehead, in a series of lectures given at Harvard in the 1920s — Printed in Science and the Modern World, Cambridge University Press, 1953. My bold and brackets) Beyond Easy: Requisites for Social Progress.

This quote from the 1920s by Whitehead, which I stumbled upon eighty years later, holds a profound relevance to our current environmental crisis. At the time I read it, it resonated with me, echoing my feelings of the mid-70s when I was contemplating becoming a generalist of science — after having realized de visu that 80% of the bodies of water in which I had swam growing up were polluted by the mid-70s — and it continues to resonate today as we face the urgent need to change our collective behavior to halt the destruction of our living environment.

In passing, I must say that science is undeniably beneficial for humanity. However, in nature, every benefit for one species within a given habitat inevitably pressures the other species within the same habitat. This dynamic forces both to adapt or face extinction. In our case, it is only through our collective action that we can influence this delicate balance.

Our habitat is the entire earth; we are its sole self-conscious inhabitants. Unlike other species, there is no natural regulator for us at this level. We must find ways to adapt our collective behavior to halt the destruction of our living environment. Meanwhile, there is no need for our existing tools to become smaller or faster to help us do better what we already do.

Progress has become an anomaly because science has always understood it from the point of view of history, “locally” in evolutionary terms. However, progress will still exist once understood from the point of view of evolution but will cease to be an anomaly after a real “second Copernican revolution” — As the planets were still showing anomalous retrograde motion to attentive observers but ceased to be regarded as anomalies when understood from the sun’s point of view after Copernicus.
Progress, seen from the point of view of evolution, will still exist. Still, instead of being destructive to our living environment, it will help us live in harmony with it, as it is already happening with Scandinavian ecological industrial parks, where the environment “benefits” from its presence. (sic)


Modern science is as responsible for the destructive nature of progress as the church was for its retardation six hundred years ago. Scientists’ limitation has never been their ability to know about the forces of nature but their avow incapacity to understand them and control our collective behavior once these forces become integrated parts of our nature (sic).

Scientists profess that the latter is not their role and that science is a “value-free enterprise.” Science is our “collective enterprise” by excellence; if it is not their role, who is it? Politicians? The term elected leader has become an oxymoron. Indeed, today’s politicians, having, for the most part, an attention span of one election, the next, are mere puppets of an industry that follows scripts drafted by a blind power elite benefiting the most from the present destructive status quo of “profit-motive.”

Unfortunately, contrary to the robbers of the temple, there is no more room for us to drive them out. As for their role in paving the road to hell with their good intentions, of which they have plenty, they won’t recognize it until they get there. Hopefully, it will be sooner rather than later — soon enough to give us the time to save ourselves.
Here, I mainly think of good-intentioned billionaires who engage in localized charitable actions but still lack clues about what their money could do for the whole environment if they’d put their act together while engraving their names on the Tower of History for having saved us.

As we needed a revolution in our way of thinking to escape the terrible Dark Ages, we need one to solve the frightening conundrum into which scientific “enlightenment” has inadvertently plunged the Modern World.

Kant’s work played the same role in explaining how we perceive reality, using the notions of analytic\synthetic apriori knowledge and categories — coming from nowhere — as Ptolemy’s did for the explanation of the heavens with his notions of crystalline spheres, epicycles, equant, and deferent, coming from the same place. As the latter were not necessary when we understood the heavens from the sun’s perspective, the former won’t be either when we look at human understanding from the point of view of evolution.

In my dissertation, I will show that we won’t need Kant’s synthetic apriori in their present forms — as they are still brilliantly discussed in philosophy from Kant’s perspective as being independent of experience— when human understanding is explained from the point of view of evolution.

Here, I sure can say that Kant’s work must have been interpreted from the point of view of “our knowledge” of evolution, in some ways, somewhere, by someone, but never, and I am positive of that, while considering the role of evolution in molding our intellectual background with apriori.(sic)

Above, I “sic” a priori because “apriori” notions do exist in the background of human rationality. Still, they are not “independent” of experience, as Kant believed, but have been ingrained by experience in our collective unconscious during our millions of years of evolution as Homo.

Knowledge is not the monopoly of our species. Understanding is. Even flowers “know” where the sun is. “To live is to know.” (Humberto Maturana)

SOURCE (The Internet)

However, it is not enough for us to know. We have to understand what we know. (Note to physicists)

“[Understanding] is the awareness of the connection between pieces of information that are presented and has a deeper level than knowing and, in fact, is essential in order to put knowledge to good use.” Difference Between Knowing and Understanding (Source Mu bold)

To “put knowledge to good use,” we need to synthesize all past knowledge to see where we stand in nature as the only earth-dwelling species able to understand. (I say “earth-dwelling species” because we are not the only one in the universe!)

As Einstein said, “It’s the theory that decides what we can observe.” And there is no such comprehensive theory about our particular relation to evolution. All the ones that we possess tend to assimilate us into the animal world. Those who don’t — here I am thinking of religious fundamentalists rejecting evolution — do it for the wrong reasons.

We are indeed animals, but unlike other species of animals that are defined by the environment in which they live, we define ours. We exist in ‘environments of knowledge’ that evolve from generation to generation and across cultures. (Note to ethologists)

As we confront our ‘limits to growth’ in this global era, we must find ways to adapt our collective behavior to this new reality while redefining ourselves not as biological entities since we “transcended” our biology by becoming human, but as a reasoning animal, as Kant’s “transcendental idealism” proposed while not considering evolution.

Our animal nature is what we indeed “transcended” when we entered Savannah millions of years ago and began to create the world of spatiotemporal phenomena in which we live today, alienated from our true nature and living environment. (Note to philosophers)

Kant didn’t know that, and neither do his followers today. That is why the world needs my dissertation. (Note to the world)


My journey into these matters began four decades ago when I embraced the role of a ‘generalist’ in science as a physicist-at-heart.* This decision was inspired by Buckminster Fuller’s wisdom, who cautioned that ‘specialization precludes comprehensive thinking.’ And it was further reinforced by Konrad Lorentz’s witty observation that ‘Specialists, by knowing ever more and more about less and less, will finish knowing everything about nothing.’

*I am a physicist-at-heart because since the age of 18, I have wanted to be a physicist, but the circumstances of life prevented me from entering the university at that moment. When the time came to return to the university as an adult student, it was too late for me to enter this world of complex mathematics. However, during all these years, I kept in contact with what ‘was’ happening in physics through monthly lay scientific journals. I say “was” because I quit at the age of 40, the same age I quit smoking.

I have come to see the ad-hoc notions of physics (particles, waves, bosons, hadrons, etc., etc., as whimsical and eventually unneeded for the unification of the forces of nature as Ptolemy’s crystalline spheres, epicycles, etc., were unneeded to understand the stars’ and the planets’ true nature and the gravitational “force” behind them.

Like the epicycles that could predict the position of the planets but hindered our understanding of their true nature, today’s QM theories face a similar predicament. They all can predict the behavior of elementary particles within a given theoretical framework, but they all fall short when explaining their true nature.

So, with the forces of nature. As the “force” of gravity could not be discovered behind the ad-hoc crystalline spheres, the true nature of the forces behind elementary particles cannot be known because of the Standard Model’s ad-hoc “carrier particles.”

Nor can we control the destructive force of nature that we have become after entering the quantum world while mindlessly using atomic resources that function in microseconds within the classical world, which functions in timelines of eons.


Giordano Bruno could have been the first to understand the universe as it is, with stars similar to the sun and planets similar to Earth, but he was made to “shut up” by inquisitors who burned him at the stake.

As a pioneer in identifying the force behind our urge to understand the world and the force behind the elementary particle, I am optimistic that today’s scientific reviewers will approach my work with an open mind. I trust that they will not repeat the harsh treatment Bruno received from the inquisitors but instead engage with my ideas fairly and constructively.
I am indeed saying something similar to physicists about the quantum world as Bruno was saying to the Scholastics and the Clergy of his time: that they didn’t know what they were talking about when talking about the planets and the stars from the point of view of a fixed Earth.
The difference between scholastics about the planets and physicists about atoms is that the physicists avow themselves that none of their theories help them understand what they are talking about.

I aim to present a synthetic “evolutionary theory” that transcends disciplinary boundaries. It will reveal the interconnectedness of cosmic, biological, and human evolution and unify these diverse aspects of our knowledge. It will offer a fresh understanding of human nature, hopefully igniting curiosity and beckoning further exploration.

Just as quantum mechanics revolutionized our understanding of energy by making it discrete, this new theory incorporates the concept of ‘evolutionary punctuation’ we are currently experiencing as a species. Ervin Laszlo depicted this ponctuation as a “bifurcation”:

Fig 1 Evolutionary Bifurcation

Accepting my interpretation of Lazlo’s Grand Synthesis is not just timely but crucial for our survival. It could hold the key to our future while potentially achieving what modern physicists have yet to accomplish: the grand unification of the forces of nature, including ourselves.

If we are made of the same matter as the known universe, the forces that hold it together must have something to do with the one that drives us to conceptualize them, don’t they? We acquired our knowledge of the forces of nature by first unifying the Earth and the heavens. The time has come to understand the forces of nature through their unification with the ones that have driven us to discover them. This unification won’t come from the data of scientific instruments within confined laboratories any more than the understanding of the heavens came from the nightly observations of the stars from the confinement of a fixed Earth.

I could be wrong, but I don’t think so! Everything in a theory that allows me to speak so confidently as a learned-ignorant generalist of science shows me the signs of a good theory. Everything fits so well in it that I must be right, even if it will sound unbelievable initially, as heliocentrism sounded outrageous to Middle Ages Scholastic. I will present this theory with utmost confidence that you will explore its potential. And you have seen nothing yet. This preamble is only setting your mind for a shock.

Here are some quotes about the signs of a good theory, which I dug out on the Internet, our nascent species consciousness:

§ The sign of a good theory is that it fits and explains the data; (check)

§ it explains more than what it is intended to; (check)

§ it predicts the existence of something that has never been seen. Scientists can then hunt for it. (check)

§ The sign of a good theory is when patterns emerge. (check)

§ The sign of a good theory is the richness that is produced from simple foundations. (check)

§ A key sign of a good theory is its ability to adequately explain reality in new and insightful ways. (double checks)

As you will see, my theory presents all these signs. If my work was judged by these criteria alone, it deserves an A+, if not a Noble Price.

(English is not my first language, and like William James, who had to “forge every sentence in the teeth of irreducible and stubborn facts,” I have to forge mine in the teeth of well-established scientific theories… in English and with the help of AI by 2024.)

At this point, some caveats have to be made. This work will not discuss the philosophical works of Locke, Kant, Hegel, and others or any other scientific theories but the place of ‘human understanding’ in evolution. As you have noticed, it will contain broad conceptual generalizations, open to interpretations and critics, and hopefully to valuable insights and future extrapolations.

If I were a painter, I would be an impressionist. As a thinker, I am the first “impressionistic evolutionist.” Contrary to evolutionary psychologists, who, parallel to my work, have described in a hyper-realist style the human landscape that I used as my field of research:

AI Generated

I will express my findings in evolution using broad conceptual strokes, as impressionists do for landscapes with prominent and visible paint strokes:


I hope my work will be mind-opening for everybody who reads it. It should be significant to all honest minds instead of, as doctoral dissertations usually are, to a small minority of scientists. I have all the prerequisites but no significant area of knowledge, and no academic department has ever been open enough to accept me as a PhD candidate. Einstein said that if we understand something, we can explain it to six-year-olds. I’m no Einstein; I settled for nine-year-olds.


“Scientists find what they look for!” Today’s QM scientists are trying to fit their data into existing theories, all based on the assumption that the quantum world is discontinued. What if it were not the “quantum” world that would be discontinued but our observations? What if, when not observed, the quantum world would be an “implicate order” interconnected in a perpetual “instant” in “holomovement”? Would this not place QM scientists in the same position as Ptolemy, who analyzed the heavens from the point of view of a fixed Earth?

While writing this preamble, I inadvertently came across this quote about scientific discovery:

“Scientific discovery is unpredictable. History reveals that scientists rarely anticipate the nature or the source of new breakthroughs before they happen. One might think, then, that it is impossible to cultivate an environment that promotes discovery. But I argue otherwise: By encouraging open research without a programmatic agenda, we can establish a fertile ground for unexpected breakthroughs.” [Fostering the Discoveries We Can’t See Coming By Avi Loeb Tuesday, October 2, 2012, The Nature of Reality ]

I agree; I have never had a “programmatic agenda.” For instance, forty years ago, I followed five courses in five different departments in one session at the Université du Québec à Rimouski.

Here is an overview of the main areas of my life-long curriculum of studies in seven different post-secondary institutions:

§ Two General Baccalaureates: Humanity, history (Romain Empire), Latin, Biology, Hockey in winter, Psychology, Economy, Baseball in summer, Physics, Mathematics (among a dozen other subjects)

§ One unspecialized Master’s: Zoology, Anthropology, Sociology (While mainly working with a Zoologist in the context of evolution)

§ 20 yrs. Postgraduate studies in absentia at the U of I (University of the Internet): On the role of progress in evolution

§ Results: Priceless


After I presented him with a rudimentary draft of my evolutionary thinking, one of my MA supervisors at the University of Guelph, the Late Ted Hadwin, told me that the three smallest books ever written were about German humor, fine English cuisine, and French humility. He reminded me that the one about French humility was so small that nobody had ever seen it.

Soon after, I sent him a letter in French telling him I had never seen this book but had heard of it. It contains one sentence, which became frère Alfred’s maxim, my Latin teacher in college when I was fifteen: “L’humilité c’est la vérité,” truth is humble.

It is too bad that this supervisor of mine and all the other teachers, except a few of the older ones at the University of Guelph, were still not ready to accept this motto thirty years later while still giving me good passing grades.

My MA Diploma

As you can see, there is no specification for a Master of Arts on this diploma, which was perfectly OK for me. However, after I receive the honorary PhD I deserve, I hope the University of Guelph’s Authorities will add the following mention to it:

“If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.” Mark Twain

This quote has served me well. I don’t remember anything I learned at the university except the formation it gave me to build the theory I will present in my dissertation.

NB. In this work, the ‘point of view of our understanding’ and the ‘point of view of progress’ are equivalent to ‘our point of view’ and ‘historical point of view.’ The ‘evolutionary point of view’ is their opposite regarding our evolution in time, as heliocentrism was the opposite of geocentrism concerning our movement in space.©

André Gaudreault



Andre Gaudreault (Gaudwin)

70+generalist, two general BA & one unspecialized MA in ZooAnthropoSociology acquired to find out why specialists cannot solve the problems created by progress.