Morphic resonance is a theory proposed by Rupert Sheldrake, a British scientist, and author, that suggests that there is a type of collective memory or influence that exists within and between species. According to Sheldrake, this collective memory is shaped by a process called morphic resonance, which he defines as the “influence of previous structures of activity on subsequent similar structures of activity.”
The concept of morphic resonance is based on the idea that each individual organism within a species is connected to a larger collective field, or morphic field, which contains the collective memory of the species. This field acts as a kind of blueprint or template for the behavior and development of individual members of the species. Sheldrake suggests that this morphic field is shaped by the collective experiences and behaviors of the members of the species and that it influences the development and behavior of new members of the species through a process called morphic resonance.
One of the key ideas behind morphic resonance is that species do not evolve solely through the process of genetic inheritance and natural selection, but also through the influence of the collective memory of the species. Sheldrake argues that this collective memory is passed down from one generation to the next through the process of morphic resonance and that it shapes the development and behavior of new members of the species.
There are several examples that Sheldrake cites to support the idea of morphic resonance. One example is the process of learning and the transmission of knowledge within a species. Sheldrake suggests that when an individual learns a new skill or behavior, this information is not just stored in their individual memory, but is also transmitted to the collective field of the species through the process of morphic resonance. This means that other members of the species may be able to learn the same skill or behavior more easily and quickly, as they are influenced by the collective memory of the species.
Another example of morphic resonance is the process of instinctive behavior in animals. Sheldrake suggests that certain instinctive behaviors, such as bird migration or the building of nests, are not solely the result of genetic inheritance, but are also influenced by the collective memory of the species. He argues that the morphic field of a species contains the collective memory of the species’ past experiences and behaviors and that this influences the development and behavior of new members of the species through the process of morphic resonance.
There are some criticisms of the theory of morphic resonance. One criticism is that the concept is not supported by empirical evidence. While there are some examples that support the idea of morphic resonance, there is not yet conclusive evidence to support the idea that a collective memory or influence exists within and between species.
Another criticism of morphic resonance is that the concept is not based on established scientific principles, such as the principles of genetics and natural selection. Some scientists argue that the theory of morphic resonance is not supported by scientific evidence and that it is not a valid explanation for the evolution and development of species.
Despite these criticisms, the theory of morphic resonance remains a topic of interest and discussion within the scientific community. While the concept is still being explored and researched, it offers an interesting and alternative perspective on the evolution and development of species and the role of collective memory and influence in shaping the behavior and development of individual organisms.