EF44 Show Notes

Reality Unchained: Smashing the Icons of Social Delusion


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DEDICATION: Episode EF44 is dedicated to Michio Kaku, a theoretical physicist known for being one of the founders of string field theory. If string or M-theory turns out to be true and experimentally provable, Kaku and his contemporaries’ work might someday enable humanity to travel between universes. While promising, these theories also smash the icons of many conventional views of the world, potentially including broadly accepted scientific worldviews like the Big Bang.

So being an iconoclast like Kaku isn’t just having the skills and dedication to challenge the status quo with bigger and better ideas; it’s also about being brave enough to accept the extreme friction of going against the grain and willingness to accept reputation loss if it fails. It also takes a bold vision and perseverance to spend an entire life and career trying to create theories of everything that relate to mysteries of the universe that humanity might never solve.

But you don’t have to be a physicist to iconoclastic actions. The world is hungry for iconoclasts who are brave enough to ask why this stuff and not some other stuff?

You can find out more:


INSPIRATIONS: Episode EF44 is further inspired by … Thomas Paine, Copernicus, Giordano Bruno, Pierre-Simon Laplace, Erwin Schrödinger.


Sam Payne is a renowned physicist investigating the nature of reality at an advanced particle accelerator. Immediately after making a groundbreaking discovery, the research mysteriously gets shut down. Without a team or a lab, Sam’s life’s work is at risk of disappearing behind chained doors. But as Sam is forced to decide if willing to break the chains on the ‘stuff’ of this reality, things continue to get even more perplexing.

Life in society imposes rules you are expected to follow. Some rules exist to keep society from devolving into anarchy. Yet upon deeper reflection, it’s clear that many other rules are arbitrary and designed to either limit your possibilities or enable a select few to profit. Only the iconoclasts of our civilization command the fearless vision to ask one of the most dangerous questions: ‘Why this stuff and not some other stuff?’ It is a unique quality — possessed and acted upon by rare individuals like Copernicus, Thomas Paine and Charles Darwin — which usually results in the iconoclast burning at the stake during their lifetime, and then, revered in retrospect.


Gregory Berns, Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently. 2008, Harvard Business Press.

Steph Solis, Copernicus and the Church: What the history books don’t say. 2013, csmonitor.com. https://www.csmonitor.com/Technology/2013/0219/Copernicus-and-the-Church-What-the-history-books-don-t-say (Accessed on: October 12, 2019)

Tom Heneghan, Scientists, theologians ponder if latest biological findings are more compatible with religion, ncronline.org. https://www.ncronline.org/news/world/scientists-theologians-ponder-if-latest-biological-findings-are-more-compatible-religion (Accessed on: October 10, 2019)

episode quotes

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EF44 (S2-E5): Reality Unchained: Smashing the Icons of Social Delusion

Why this stuff and not some other stuff? For example, why is alcohol legal and marijuana is not in most places? Or what if meditation had swept the globe instead of praying to gods? How would the world look if society chose different ‘stuff’ to call acceptable?

EF44 (S2-E5): Reality Unchained: Smashing the Icons of Social Delusion

Season Two, Episode Five: Society and culture can be shackles locking us in a mental prison cell. Iconoclastic thinking is a sure way to break the chains and reveal the truth, but it is risky. Does this make ‘why this stuff and not some other stuff’ the most dangerous question you can ask?