Bloody Superstition and New Cosmology
On April 24, 1997, a controversial cover article appeared in the Vancouver underground-gone-aboveground magazine the Georgia Straight, titled "Bloody Superstition", by the famed journalist Shawn Blore. Given its being a well written summary of the beginning of my avatar's full time activism in 1995, preceded by his interaction with me in Africa almost two decades prior, I will present it verbatim below. This will serve to lead up to the long hot summer of 1996 when this book will unfold.
by Shawn Blore
July 24, 1997
Georgia Straight Magazine
Vancouver, BC, Canada
Pessimist give the world's tigers 5 years. Realists, 10.
They're the kind of number that make you want to quietly despair, to give up, to flip the channel and think about something more pleasant. Melrose Place maybe, or Roseanne. Anthony Marr, however, whether from a sense of conceit, ignorance, or a staggering sense of confidence, saw nothing impossible in the task of bringing the tiger back from the brink...
... To highlight the extent of Vancouver's tiger trade, Marr kicked off a media blitz in November 1995. Local journalists were invited on an endangered species tour through Chinatown's apothecaries. The tour began in the low-ceilinged warren that serves as Western Canada Wilderness Committee's headquarters. Marr upended his briefcase, spilling out 15-20 boxes of Chinese patent medicines: tiger plasters, tiger pills, tiger-based medicaments for rheumatism, tired blood, soft bones, and sexual impotence, all of them purchased in shops in Vancouver's Chinatown. Pointing to the ingredients lists on the diverse packages, Marr picked out the symbols, words, and phrases that in Latin, English and Chinese spelled out “tiger bone”.
The next part of the tour was a trip along Pender, Main and Keefer Streets, with Marr indicating here and there the shops and apothecaries dealing in tiger medicinals and inviting journalists to go in and check the shelves for themselves. Six shops out of 10 stocked a variety of boxes, cartons and bottles labeled with some variation of the word Os Tigris - tiger bone.
The media loved it. Marr made it on to TV news both locally and nationally, and stories appeared in city magazines and community papers. He used his pulpit to heap scorn upon Canadian wildlife regulations. “Canada's wildlife laws could use an aphrodisiac,' Marr said, “because right now, they're totally impotent.” He was equally hard-hitting in his presentations to Chinese community groups and at Eastside Vancouver high schools. Traditional Chinese medicine's use of parts of animals like tigers and rhinos, Marr said, and the cutting of many urban trees for that matter, were based on nothing but pure superstition. That superstition was destroying a magnificent species. The fact that the practice was tolerated by the Chinese-Canadian community only blackened their reputation in mainstream Canadian society.
Environmentalists heaved a sigh of relief. Here was someone tackling a problem they had long known about but dared not touch. “It's great that it's a Chinese person doing the work he's doing.” said Nathalie Chalifour, World Wildlife Fund Canada's tiger expert, “because when it's a person like me doing it, well, I'm white; I'm more likely to be accused to being racist, which is really unfortunate, but it does happen.”
Vancouver's Chinese media were as quick to jump on the story as their English counterparts. Marr's campaign was covered by both the Ming Pao and the Sing Tao newspapers, and he appeared on several Chinese language radio programs. According to Ming Pao columnist and CJVB radio host Gabriel Yiu, the Chinese community's reaction to Marr's campaign was mixed. His straight talk on superstition did offend some, but there was also those who took pride in the fact that a Chinese Canadian was working on environmental concerns. “For a long period of time when people are talking about monster homes, tree cutting, killing wild animals for some of their body parts,” Yiu said, “people do have the impression that the Chinese community is the cause of that. I think the work Anthony did set a very good example that we do have people in the Chinese community who are concerned about these issues.”...
According to Vancouver city councilor Don Lee, Marr's effectiveness was limited... “I don't know Anthony Marr that well. The Chinese Community doesn't know him well at all,” Lee said. “We don't know where he comes from. We don't know why he's doing all this.” As it turns out, those are two of the most interesting questions that could be asked about Anthony Marr..."
Born in February 1944, in southern China, Anthony Seeu-Sung Marr fled to Hong Kong along with the rest of his family shortly after the Communist revolution. Family legend has Marr's father burning the deeds of the family's extensive land-holdings for a moment's warmth during the first refugee winter...
(In 1965), Marr came to Canada to study science at the University of Manitoba... At the same time, his relationship with a Hong Kong girl fell to bits when she dropped him on orders from her parents. Marr has never forgiven Chinese culture for the snub. “As a result of that incident, I have never dated a Chinese girl again,” Marr said. It's a decision that isolated him somewhat from the Chinese community, but, according to Marr, it also allowed him to integrate more fully into Canadian society than other Chinese immigrants of his generation.
In 1966, Marr switched over to the physics department of the University of British Columbia. His summers he spent in the bush in northern Manitoba and British Columbia, working as a geologist's assistant. It was work that can only be idealized by someone who has never done it. Marr said, “The student is the geologist's personal servant - more like slave, considering the pay, which was only $280 per month. I made and carried his lunch, and every few feet, the geologist would pick up a rock sample about twice the size of my fist and drop it into my knapsack. I had to carry that ever-heavier thing all day, wading into swamps that would sometimes come up to my chest or higher. Your shirt would be black with flies and mosquitoes. There could be a bear behind every tree. It was brutal, but also absolutely beautiful. And this was how I bonded with nature.”
After he graduated with a B.Sc. in 1970, Marr took a job as a live-in house-father for emotionally disturbed kids, then a career in real estate. He said he had a heavy student loan to pay off. One senses he also had a need to gain acceptance among the Vancouver business community. “I made rookie of the year, then Gold Club, Diamond Club, all that,” Marr said. “I bought a couple of horses - hunters-jumpers - and got involved with the high social elite you see down in Southlands.” Snap shots from the time show a short-haired Marr in boots and riding breeches, sitting atop a bay Thoroughbred gelding.
The real estate phased continued for several years. Marr bought a small acreage in the suburbs. He dated but never married. “The work first became routine, then boring, then irksome, then unbearable. I was still good at it, but the initial challenge was gone,” he said.
About this time, things took a strange turn. Whether from boredom, a need to be alone, or perhaps simple a desire to see the sights, he left his job and set off on a solo journey in East Africa, primarily in the Kilimanjaro, Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater and Olduvai Gorge region of Tanzania. At some point during that three month sojourn, something happened that changed the whole focus of Marr's life. “If you want to be dramatic, you could say it came to me all at once in a blinding flash while I was camping on the savannah, but really, it developed very gradually.” What Marr was catching sight of was a completely new philosophical system, one that in Marr's view is comprehensive enough to explain the organization and development of life, society and the Cosmos itself.
The full tenet of this system came to him in dribs and drabs over a period of many months during and after his return. Marr collected each of these thoughts on a file card - more than 1,000 of them by the end - and worked at ordering, arranging, and reordering them, trying to assemble his thoughts into a coherent whole. The process took years. Marr's live-in girlfriend walked out. “I really shouldn't be living with someone at that point," Marr said. “I had to have my own room. I had to have a ‘DO NOT DISTURB’ sign on the door, and if anybody as much as knocked, my tenuous mental construct would fall down like a house of cards.” The net result of his shuffling and reshuffling, typing and retyping, was a manuscript more than 800 pages in length, describing a new and comprehensive philosophical and phenomenological system. Marr christened it OMNI-SCIENCE....
At first glance, OMNI-SCIENCE bears some resemblance to the ideas of the Jesuit philosopher-scientist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. Both suggest that the development of humanity must logically proceed in a converging upward spiral, which Marr calls Integrative Transcendence, towards ever-superior levels of organization and unity. Marr, however, is quick to point out how his system differs from those of other western philosophers. “No philosophical or religious system I’ve encountered is cosmic enough,” said Marr. “They're too anthropocentric, too narrowly focused.” Marr's system purportedly incorporates everything - inorganic and organic - throughout the Universe, from the Big Bang to whatever end, all participating in the multi-levelled Integrative Transcendence spiral towards universal life and consciousness.
Hogwash? Possibly. Even Marr himself had doubts (about the acceptability of his system in the eyes of high academia). In the late 80s, Marr tossed both manuscript and portable type-writer into his little green Toyota Celica and set off down the West Coast to test his system with the best academic minds he could find. One of the stops was the University of California at Berkeley, and another was Stanford. “This was when my sales training paid off. When I got to town, the first thing I'd do was find a course catalog and look up the professors who were teaching the courses I liked. Back in my hotel room, I'd crank out a dozen or so letters. ‘Dear Prof. so and so, I have a matter of philosophical interest that I'd like to discuss with you. The time required would be about two hours...’ Then I'd go back to campus and put the letters into the professors’ cubbyholes. The next day, I'd call and ask for an appointment. We'd talk for two hours, and at the end, I'd ask for a letter of critique.”
The good professors' reactions to this approach can be discerned from the letter written by William Kimbel, president of the Institute of Human Origins at Berkeley: “Owing to the large number of half-baked theories on cosmology currently in circulation, I admit that I faced the prospect of my meeting with Mr. Marr with some trepidation. From the outset, however, it was clear that Mr. Marr is no amateur populariser. On the contrary, he is a dedicated scholar whose theories, I believe, make a profound contribution to the fundamental definition of humankind in relation to the broader universe… implications of great depth and breadth for the future course of human actions… too important to ignore.”
Marr received similarly effusive letters from other professors at Berkeley, Stanford, and the Universities of Oregon, Washington and British Columbia...
Heady stuff. Yet, more than a decade later, the manuscript remains unpublished. Professor Braxton Alfred of Anthropology, UBC, said he even offered to help find a publisher, but Marr said his manuscript was not yet ready for publication. He did leave a copy of the then manuscript behind after his presentation, but due to professional pressures, Alfred didn't get around to looking at it until recently. Reading it now, Alfred said, only increases his respect for Marr. It also sheds light on what it was that set him on his current crusade.
“The presentation he gave me was hard science, very thoroughly presented. He was right on the numbers with everything in the presentation. I presumed likewise in these documents,” Alfred said, referring to the OMNI-SCIENCE manuscript, “but these are quite a different thing. That man had a revelation in Africa. There's no other way to characterize it. It's clear that he was experiencing some sort of emotional trauma, and something touched him, and what these documents record are the revealed truth of that contact.”
According to the manuscript, Alfred said, Marr had reached a crisis and was sitting in the snows of Kilimanjaro, pointing a gun at his head.
Then, as stated in Marr's text: “The sun went down, the moon came up, and more than my hand had begun trembling. It was then that this mysterious source of wisdom address me for the first time: ‘I am seeking a miracle worker, to work a miracle upon this Earth, on my behalf. Since you seem to have no further use of this body of yours, which seems to be in prime condition, will you surrender it to me?’”
“That's when the entity, or whatever it is, first made contact with him,” Alfred said, “but, apparently, the contact continues. It seems that there is no end to it. I would not be surprised if he has conversations with this entity still.”
Having read the manuscript, Alfred said he is no longer puzzled by Marr's decision to turn away from the task of perfecting his book to work on behalf of endangered species. “It was in Africa that this naturism force first came to the fore...” The manuscript also gives some indication of the source of Marr's willingness to take on seemingly hopeless causes. “He clearly came to a crisis point in his life,” Alfred said, “and the heavens opened up and truth was revealed, and he's been going strong eversince.”
Wherever his confidence came stems from, when the “‘19th-century scholar' decided to prove himself as an environmental saviour, he displayed a thoroughly 19th century sense of ambition...
… Although some conservationists predict the tiger will be extinct in five years, Anthony Marr is convinced he can reverse the prophecy…
… China imported the equivalent of 400 grown tigers and exported 27 million tiger derivative products from 1990 to 1993… About 39,000 individual tiger containing products were seized in BC in 1996, including everything from medicinals to tiger claws…
A Vancouver branch of Asian Conservation Awareness Program is planning to begin an ad blitz this June, timed to coincide with the dragon-boat festival. Ironically, Marr will likely not be invited to participate. According to ACAP's Vancouver organizer Ling Zheng, Marr's confrontational style doesn't fit in with ACAP's approach, which hinges on establishing partnerships with the Chinese community groups and obtaining sponsorship from prominent corporations. “We're trying to reach out to the Chinese community, so we try not to use his name,” Zheng said. “If we mention Anthony Marr, I will probably not get any help from organizations like SUCCESS or the Chinese Cultural Centre. He can be quite harsh towards certain Chinese people, and I've even heard that in the Chinese community he's considered like a traitor.”
Whether that’s true or not, Marr has shifted his efforts from reducing consumption into preserving tiger habitat. With the aid of a $75,000 grant from the Canadian International Development Agency, Marr has gone to India to work towards protecting two Indian tiger reserves from encroachment and poaching by local villagers. The plan is to take a traveling multi-media show to villages around the tiger reserves and convince the villagers that the tiger is worth more to them alive than dead.
“Do you think these women enjoy walking five miles every day into the bush to collect a bunch of twigs and carry it back to the village on top of their heads? They do it because they have no choice,” Marr said. “If we give them a choice and say, Look, we’re going to develop ecotourism, we’re going to organize tourist groups to come to your village, and maybe you can develop some native products to sell to them… Wouldn’t you rather stay at home and weave baskets with your kids than walk five miles to haul water?” Other conservationists from other groups have made these arguments before, often with little success, but with characteristic confidence, Marr is convinced he will succeed.
Anthony Marr recalls:
Most of my friends are Caucasian. Back in 1995, I had TV buddies of common interest, namely wildlife. Once a week or so, we got together to watch National Geographic over beer or tea (mine was tea). I loved these buddies of mine and these get-togethers, but there was often one thing that made me feel uncomfortable. Whenever an endangered species was touched upon and the Chinese use of animal parts in their traditional medicine was named as a cause of their endangerment, I would find myself on needles and pins due to my Chinese lineage, and became keenly aware that everyone else in the room was doing their best to try not glancing at me. Finally, when again it happened, I said, "Look at me. Tell me what you are thinking."
Ron, the most loud-mouthed of the bunch, cleared his throat and said, "I think it sucks. But we're honkies. We can't say a single word without being accused of racism."
Now I feel all eyes on me like lasers. I swallowed, hard, then said, "Alright, I'll do it." That was in the summer of 1995.
By November, I had checked out each and every one of the 33 traditional Chinese apothecaries for traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) containing endangered species ingredients. To my astonishment, I found highly packaged "patent medicines" galore, listing ingredients such as tiger bone, tiger penis, rhino horn, bear bile..., prominently displayed on shelves in all of the stores. I made a list of them, placing stars next to their names in terms of TV potential.
In the same period, I checked out Canadian law, and found a huge loophole that made it look like a joke. International law had it that no two nations could trade in any item containing endangered species part. And Canadian customs did check shipping containers from the Orient. But the Canadian government plainly stated that customs had enough man power to check only 2% of all the shipping containers, meaning that 98% of all illegal shipments simply slip right through, and the 2% discovered were simply confiscated, with a light monetary fine attached. The 98% that slipped through would enter Chinatown and be displayed for sale with impunity.
The reason for this is that there was no Canadian law governing the sale of these internationally illegal products once they have made their way into the country. It's like the Canadian government yelling to the smugglers, saying, "Hey, if you are smart enough to smuggle the stuff through customs, we'd allow you to sell it openly."
I thought hard as to how to Chinatown of these products, and concluded on two alternatives. One was to go into Chinatown and speak to the store owners to voluntarily destroy them, and to the Chinese people in Vancouver to not buy them. The other was to use media to blow the situation out to the public consciousness, which could press the Canadian government to create a law to ban the sale of such items anywhere within the country, such that the merchants would have no choice but to abide. The former looked to me like a pipe dream, and I settle for the latter.
By November, I was ready for action. At that point, I was just an unknown individual, and it was the subject matter that made the campaign so successful. I sent out media releases about my findings, and asked specific TV stations to come to Chinatown to document me openly purchasing endangered species products off the shelf. And no one turned me down.
In one of these operations, I would have the TV camera parked across the street, but with the camera pointed down the street as if doing a tourism shoot. They would put a mic on me and I would walk right into the store, go straight to the shelf where the endangered species products were displayed, pick out a few samples, pay for them at the counter, and walk straight back out towards the TV camera, with the products in my hands, which I would show the camera close-up. By the time I had done all three of Vancouver's main TV stations, Chinatown had gone abuzz, and the TV-coverage had gone national. Activists from Victoria BC, Toronto and Ottawa ON, wrote me and asked me to do the same with their own Chinatowns.
I spent $100 to go to Victoria by ferry, but I did not have a deep enough pocket to fly across the continent at will. In December, I took my campaign to a few local groups, asking for their support. The one that came through, big time, was the 28,000-members-strong Western Canada Wilderness Committee, headed by founder Paul George, executive director Adrian Carr, and campaign director Joe Foy, all of whom I have seen on TV before. They sat opposite me across their conference room table, and pelted me with questions. After two hours of intense interrogation, over coffee, not only did they offer to support the campaign, but hire me on as their animal-issue campaign director. The pay was low ($25,000), no lower than what Paul, Adrian and Joe were paid, and I lept to the opportunity.
To make a not-too-long story short, came March, 1966, I received a personal letter from the then attorney general Sergio Marchi pre-informing me of the imminent passing of a new law acronymed WAPPRIITA, short for "Wild Animal and Plant Protection and Regulation of International and Interprovincial Trade Act". In April, it became law. By 1997, it was fully enforced.
University of California, Berkeley
Biology, Professor Richard W. Holms:
“I have listened to a presentation by Anthony S. Marr. His synthesis of ideas from a remarkably broad perspective of sciences truly deserves the name OMNI-SCIENCE. His presentation was precise and clear, and I believe he would be an effective speaker for groups at varying levels of expertise…This is a person of great depth who speaks and writes both with confidence and ease. I am happy to recommend him as a speaker and a writer.”
Astronomy and Physics, Professor Marc Davis:
“As one who actually specializes in cosmology as a research endeavour, I was at first very skeptical that Mr. Marr would be yet another crackpot of the type that seems to congregate in this field. However, after only a few minutes of listening to his explanation of his viewpoint, my fears were allayed…His ultimate goal appears to be to provide a forward-looking moral framework for progress in human social evolution, one that is consistent with empirical science and which is not based on historical writings…and important contribution to society….”
Anthropology, Professor Tim White:
“I have not seen a draft of the book, but I can say that after spending a few hours with Mr. Marr, I am very much looking forward to reading it….Mr. Marr is an exceedingly unique individual. I have never crossed paths with such a person. He is very serious, very dedicated, and very polished in his presentation…The care with which he his proceeded is commendable…his synthesis is formidable….”
Paleontology, Professor Carole S. Hickman:
“(Mr. Marr’s work) deserves the attention of serious scholars…an extraordinary intellectual undertaking…a unique framework…both intellectually and aesthetically stimulating…a bold and eclectic piece of scholarship that is, above all, refreshingly honest….His clarity of expression is exceptional. His logical consistency is a delight. The aesthetic quality of the model, in particular his attention to symmetry, provides a dimension that is appealing but sadly lacking in much of Western thought and tradition. The optimism, concern and compassion for humanity that are expressed in the application of the model to human behavior likewise commands attention….”
Zoology, Professor Richard C. Strohman:
“His views and thinking are quite original…a thoroughly logical system…might indeed fill a large gap in the way we think about evolutionary connections between ourselves and our world. I sincerely encourage you to listen to Mr. Marr. And I have one suggestion. His presentation is quite detailed and covers very large areas. My thought is that he and his listeners would all do much better in a small seminar setting so that there would be a symmetry between his own very wide knowledge and the ability for him to obtain meaningful feedback.”
Botany, Professor Herbert G. Baker:
“…an extremely interesting experience…worthy of the attention of a wide variety of persons. If he writes as clearly and understandably as his oral communication, the book should be an important contribution towards understanding cosmology.”
Paleontology, Professor Donald E. Savage:
“Professors and scientists at the universities of British Columbia, Washington, Oregon and California, to date, have each spent two hours or more listening to the powerful presentation of Anthony Marr of his erudite synthesis of scientific, philosophic and sociologic theory: OMNI-SCIENCE, A New Theory of Cosmology. I can add nothing to the praise that has been heaped upon Mr. Marr and his ideas by these men, and I endorse their statements with reservation. Now is the time for Mr. Marr’s ideas to be published, for the scientific world and general public should become aware of his synthesis.”
Institute of Human Origins, Berkeley
Dr. William H. Kimbel, President:
“I have recently had the great pleasure of listening to Anthony Marr describe the results of his thinking on cosmology.
“Owing to the large number of half-baked ‘pop’ theories on cosmology currently in circulation, I admit that I faced the prospect of my meeting with Mr. Marr with some trepidation.
“From the outset, however, it was clear that Mr. Marr is no amateur populariser. On the contrary, he is a dedicated scholar whose theories, I believe, make a profound contribution to the fundamental definition of humankind in relation to the broader universe.
“Although Mr. Marr has an uphill battle ahead of him, I firmly believe that his ideas deserve very serious consideration by a wide audience. Not only do they unify the fragmented Western scientific disciplines, but they have implications of great depth and breadth for the future course of human actions. In the current atmosphere of censorship and anti-intellectualism, Mr. Marr’s concept of OMNI-SCIENCE is too important to ignore.”
Sociology, Professor Alex Inkeles:
“Recently Mr. Anthony Marr persuaded me to give him an hour of my time, all I could spare in that cycle of my calendar, and at that it had to be at the end of a busy day. This obliged Mr. Marr, as he told me, to adopt a different style of presentation than the one he usually used, one much more compressed and involving a more top-down approach instead of his usual inductive procedure. Despite these handicaps, Mr. Marr managed to impress me not only with the quality of his presentation, but also the quality of his thinking. The range of his knowledge is broad, and for something so broad seems impressively authoritative. At the heart of his approach is a conception of all living and indeed nonliving matter as organized in systems, and this gave him a considerable edge with me since my own propensity is to think in system terms… exceptionally comprehensive….”
Philosophy, Professor John Dupre:
“A few days ago, I had a lengthy discussion with Mr. Anthony Marr about his philosophical ideas. I can certainly confirm the impressions gained by the various other scholars who have written on his behalf. Marr is a highly intelligent, thoughtful man who has evidently acquired a thorough knowledge of the impressively broad range of topics over which his ideas range. As we were talking, I asked him all the difficult questions that occurred to me as he was outlining his ideas. He was always very quick to get the point, and had intelligent and relevant responses. I was very impressed with his various intellectual accomplishments.
“Though his ideas are extremely intriguing and provocative, I must confess to having considerable skepticism about his project which he did not altogether dispel. However, I very much doubt whether anyone could dispel this skepticism, and certainly not in two hours. I am not convinced, that is to say, that a systematic view of the scope that Marr attempts is really an intelligible project. However, there is no doubt that such projects will be forthcoming, and such a system informed by Mr. Marr’s deep and thorough understanding of the current state of scientific theory will undoubtedly be incomparably more edifying than the vast majority of such attempts, whether religiously based, or grounded on superficial impressions of science. Indeed, I am open to being convinced that such a project will address a pressing social need: if people insist on adopting comprehensive cosmological systems, then I would certainly encourage them to try his. I certainly share his concern about the dangers of many contemporary religious, especially fundamentalist, cosmologies.
“One thing, then I would say without any qualification is that I would strongly encourage any publisher to accept his book. I have not read the manuscript, but assuming, as I have no reason to doubt, that Marr is as articulate, clear and cogent on paper as he is in person, his system would make fascinating reading, and would, I suspect, attract a large audience….”
Applied Physics and Astrophysics, Professor Vahe Petrosian:
“…elaborate…clearly well thought out and researched…I was fascinated by his novel ideas in this very ambitious task…a beautiful synthesis…what I heard was captivating and should be of interest not only to experts but to all thinking people of the world…will find a wide and interested audience….”
Anthropology, Professor John W. Rick:
“…very thought provoking…an integrative scheme capable of making sense out of a wide variety of natural science knowledge, which at the same time reaches out to philosophy and epistemology…clearly deserves extensive discussion…a serious, well-founded vision, not the product of trivial or eccentric thought. My feeling is that he deserves attention and his ideas should be published. I would recommend that those who have the time listen and argue over his presentation. One should not underestimate the time this may take, however, since his model covers a broad expanse of knowledge. I would think that his presentation would be an ideal forum in an academic department where a group of faculty and graduate students could take time to thoroughly examine his proposition….”
Physics, Professor Leonard Susskind:
“…the cosmic significance of life and evolution. Although this is not exactly my ‘meat’, I thoroughly enjoyed the two hours…I found myself stimulated, educated…His ideas are worth listening to, even for those of us who are not of the same philosophical bent….”
Philosophy, Professor John Bogart:
“I spent 3.5 hours with Mr. Anthony Marr…held my attention for the entire period…has plainly synthesized a great deal of information in a number of distinct disciplines…organized it into an interesting and coherent whole…compelling…intended to have moral import…can be cast into a form of interest to moral philosophy…would be of interest to a wide audience….”
Geology, Professor W.R. Evitt:
“I agree wholeheartedly…about his sincerity, imagination, intellectualism and scholarship. This afternoon was for me a unique and stimulating experience. In a highly logical series of simple steps, he developed a comprehensive concept of the interrelations and interdependence of all things…an immensely logical construct…should be accessible and acceptable to persons with a wide range of cultural, social, scientific and philosophical sophistications…meticulously thought out, with great care, to making his thesis externally consistent with the facts of science as currently perceived, and internally consistent in the interrelationships among its arguments…majestic in scope but intrinsically simple, satisfying and optimistic…should have a very broad appeal…These are important ideas with great potential for lessening the conflicts in a troubled world….”
University of Oregon
Geology, Professor Greg Retallack:
“Although initially skeptical, I found his whole system quite fascinating and thought provoking…I thought that his model was superior to those already available. His proposed books will be important advances in thinking on the origin and evolution of life and society…His presentation was made with the care and rigor of a serious and dedicated scholar. He has a good and up to date understanding of the natural sciences. I could not detect a trace of mysticism or journalistic pseudoscience in his presentation. Mr. Marr is a hard-headed thinker in the best scientific tradition. He deserves serious attention.”
Biology, Professor Stanton A. Cook:
“Anthony Marr has explained to me his thoughts on physical hierarchies and evolution of organic hierarchies on earth. He elaborated a novel way of diagramming or organizing these thoughts that should be quite useful to an audience that has not thought much on these matters. I do believe that comprehension and appreciation of levels of organization has been hampered by a want of just such a methodical and visual approach…He left me with a clear impression that he has a well developed message….”
Biology, Professor Dennis Todd:
“Anthony Marr has developed a new theoretical framework that integrates a great deal of scientific information from diverse fields. His thesis deserves your careful attention.
“Mr. Marr impressed me with the breadth of his knowledge, the seriousness of his intellectual pursuit, and the keenness of his insight. He is a rare person: one who can understand the findings of specialized branches of various sciences, apply them to other branches, synthesize a meaningful and coherent overview, and present his conclusions in a masterly and cogent fashion.
“His philosophy unites the multiplicity of levels of organization, both biotic and abiotic, into a coherent system of analysis. The system that he proposes, with parallels between levels ranging from the atomic to the cosmic, provides a fresh perspective for those who wish to understand the workings of nature. Furthermore, his principles can function as a springboard for leaps into realms that, at least for the present, are purely philosophical - teleology, epistemology and ontology.
“Mr. Marr is a serious and dedicated scholar. I commend him and ask that you grant him an opportunity to present his ideas to you.”
Ecology, John Burket:
“This letter is to urge the serious and positive consideration for the work done by Anthony Marr.
“I spent an afternoon talking with Anthony and learning the system of thought as set down in his manuscript. That short experience has instilled in me the kind of wondered awe that arises when previously nebulous thoughts, ideas and feelings suddenly crystallized into a framework of order.
“It is my opinion that Anthony Marr’s system of Integrative Transcendence is the germ of a new worldview, and that the minds of people today are very fertile ground for this philosophy. The clarity and logical order of this system gives an immediate sense of recognition of ones place in the scheme of existence.
“Further, one can see from this philosophy how the future of our planet can be seen in terms of undeniable purpose and hope, a state of mind so lacking in these times.
“I urge you to listen to Anthony Marr and publish his work. His is an idea whose time has come.”
University of Washington
Ecology, Ethology, Sociobiology, Environmental Studies, Professor Gordon H. Orians:
“During the past month I have had an opportunity to listen to a lengthy presentation by Anthony Marr of his comprehensive cosmological system. In addition, I have read most of his book-length manuscript titled OMNI-SCIENCE. These encounters have revealed to me that Anthony Marr is a deep thinking and widely read person. In those areas of biology where I am competent to judge, Mr. Marr is thorough and accurate in his presentation of fact. He has delved deeply into evolutionary, ecological and behavioral literature. He has also had extensive field experience, upon which he draws repeatedly in his book.
“Mr. Marr’s mode of presentation of his ideas deviates strikingly from standard scientific ones, reflecting his philosophical ancestry and his goals. Primarily he is attempting to develop a philosophical scheme that can encompass both modern science and religion in a way that can be acceptable to both. His is also a futuristic perspective, offering hope at a time when so many of us feel a deep sense of despair. This is a daunting task but one which we avoid at considerable peril. Given the religious rejection of science that are so rampant in American culture today, thorough attempts to develop comprehensive cosmologies are badly needed and should receive our serious attention. Mr. Marr has provided one such system. I hope that it can be published and made available to a wide audience so that it can receive serious discussion by persons of many walks of life and varied persuasions.”
Astronomy, Professor Woodruff T. Sullivan III:
“I am very impressed with his dedication, his abilities, and the synthesis he has produces. As an astronomer and historian of science who has long decried the compartmentalization of academia, I applaud all serious efforts such as this to cross disciplinary lines and to synthesize knowledge. We obviously do not know of Mr. Marr’s picture is the ‘correct’ one, but it is well informed, does not appear to be in conflict with the state of knowledge in scientific fields with which I am familiar, and gives promise to lead to further insight…His ideas deserve to be published and, I think, will appeal to a wide audience of both lay-persons and scientists.”
Medicine, Biomedical History, Professor Keith R. Benson:
“I found his presentation to be creative, highly synthetic, scientifically sound and eclectic, and extremely comprehensive. Obviously, Mr. Marr has read and studied extensively; moreover, his new theory reveals his impressive ability to think carefully and critically.
“A an historian of biology, I am aware of the reluctance to construct cosmologies at the present time because they inevitably involve major speculative activity. However, I also think that it may be necessary for scientific literati like Mr. Marr to engage in this work. After all, we are bombarded constantly with cosmological schemes with the barest of scientific support. I find many aspects of Mr. Marr’s system compelling. I urge additional support for his work.”
Geology, Professor Stephen C. Porter:
“…an interesting and enlightening experience. It quickly became apparent to me that Mr. Marr is an extremely intelligent and knowledgeable person and his devoted a considerable amount of time and thought to the philosophical system he set forth in his manuscript. He is articulate and obviously is widely read in many fields of science. His knowledge, however, is not superficial, but demonstrates a keen sense of scholarship.
“He has undertaken a task, indeed a mission, that to many would appear overwhelming - the integration of many fields of knowledge, both scientific and cultural, in a hierarchical scheme that illustrates the place of human beings in the natural and temporal order of the universe.
“His thesis is thought provoking and, as far as I know, original in its approach. The subject is one that should interest both professionals and nonprofessionals, and could elicit considerable discussion. Assuming that the manuscript is engagingly written at the appropriate level, it could command a wide audience.”
University of British Columbia
Biology, Professor Ian McTaggart-Cowan:
“This will introduce Mr. Anthony Marr…We met for a full afternoon during which he presented his objectives, his background preparation and led me through the development of his novel theory. We had an extended discussion in which I probed deeply in my area of expertise.
“I emerged highly impressed with his seriousness of purpose, his intellectual capacity, his ability to grasp and use unusually detailed information drawn from a broad range of scientific disciplines. He met my challenges forthrightly, thoughtfully and in detail.
“Subsequently, I read his book manuscript. In this he develops a philosophy that rests securely on basic scientific understanding. I followed with fascination the evolution of his theoretical concept of the progress of life on earth from inception to society…
“I am convinced that what he is striving to achieve is important.
“Mr. Marr is an unusually talented and discipline individual. He is one of the many millions of people who are deeply distressed by many of the directions and consequences he sees in the world today, but unlike so many, he has dedicated himself to struggling intellectually to develop and promote new attitudes.
“Mr. Marr is a serious scholar who both writes and speak with ease and confidence. I urge you to give his book the serious attention it deserves.”
Geology and Oceanography, Professor R.L. Chase:
“The work is a brave attempt to give us a new, science-based philosophy, with the aim of giving humankind a common purpose to unite the planet and seek societies beyond it. As a geologist I found his synthesis stimulating and refreshing. I have tried to work out for myself a philosophy based on paleontology and the physical sciences, but Mr. Marr has gone further to produce a more comprehensive worldview.”
Evolutionary Biology, Professor G.G.E. Scudder:
“I spent a bout three hours with Anthony Marr…I found his approach to be logical and thorough. He has a good gasp of the basic principles and ideas in the natural sciences and is aware of the limitations of our current knowledge…I believe that his contribution is original and well founded. Mr. Mr. is clearly dedicated and talented….”
Astronomy and Geophysics, Professor T.K. Menon:
“I was highly impressed by his breadth of knowledge…There is no question in my mind about the seriousness f his pursuit and the need to have his ideas widely discussed. He deserves to have a wide audience to expose his ideas for scholarly appraisal, and I urge that such an opportunity be made available to him.”
Biology, Profession Lee Gass:
“I am writing on behalf of Anthony Marr. My purpose is to document his seriousness of purpose, the strength of his commitment to understanding, his intellectual solidity and honesty, and his willingness and ability to consider an extremely broad range of issues in a way that can potentially clarify them for large numbers of people…
“He has responded to my most rigorous challenges extremely well, demonstrating a degree of intellectual discipline that is rare even among professional scholars…
“I have no doubt that he has dedicated his life to this project….”
Physical Anthropology, Professor Braxton M. Alfred:
“Mr. Marr’s effort is in the tradition of 19th Century scholarship, but is based solidly on 20th Century science. There is simply no modern parallel for his accomplishment.
“His system is extraordinarily ambitious…It purports, and is successful in my opinion, to explain hierarchical structure in the phenomenal world…It is truly a grand scheme…
“He speaks with the power and confidence of one who totally commands the material. The presentation was scheduled for two hours. After four hours, mutually fatigued, we adjourned, and I was very reluctant to quit.
“It is a compelling indictment of the structure of contemporary academic departments that, undoubtedly, no graduate would be allowed to pursue such a project with any expectation of being awarded a degree. This is in spite of the fact that Mr. Marr’s product is in every way superior to any of the Ph.D. degree this department has awarded in the twenty years of my appointment.
“It is characterized by careful, thoughtful attention and rigorous development. I recommend it, and him, without qualification.
This concludes Part I, Prologue, of this book. Now, let the fun begin!
The Fortunate and Called Upon
at your service
Anthony Marr, Founder and President
Heal Our Planet Earth (HOPE)
Global Anti-Hunting Coalition (GAHC)