‘I think therefore I am’, is one of the most fundamental statements about the nature of our reality and it is a statement that, according to Descartes is beyond what he termed , ‘hyperbolic doubt’. However I believe there to be an even more fundamental statement that is beyond doubt and within this statement is for me the deepest construct in our universe, or any other universe. The statement to which I refer is, ‘The universe is complex and therefore I am ‘ and the construct of which I speak is that of complexity. In scientific and mathematical terms we do not have any general agreed definition of complexity but we know that highly ordered and simple behaviour cannot lead to complex and dynamic structures that we see in the universe and that are ultimately expressed in our own complex form and behaviour.

Physics continues to be an amazing intellectual exercise that has moulded our world more than any other discipline. However to do physics one has to simplify systems and structures by applying what is often called, ‘reductionism’. It is through this simplification process that information is lost and hence physics has become a highly fragmented subject that has many inferred views of the nature of our reality. In fact when it comes to reality physicists seem to throw away their disciplined approach and fail to define what they mean by the term, ‘reality’.

I have come to believe that if we truly want to make the next step toward understanding the nature of our universe and its possible realities, and to look beyond, relativity and quantum mechanics then we need to start again and begin the search from a viewpoint that does not encompass reductionism and simplification as its base. We also need an approach that eliminates all of the dogma and unquestioned assumptions that have built up around our current physics.

To this end I have been working on an idea that I call, ‘The Cosmological Theory of Stuff’ or, ‘CTS’. In this theory I throw away all of our preconceptions of the universe and instead attempt to make as few assumptions as possible and address head on the complex nature of the perceived and non-perceived universe.

As we can agree that the stuff must exhibit complex behaviour, although it may be fundamentally simple there seems no reason why we cannot apply our generalised concepts for describing a system. We can also infer that as a complex system the stuff is likely to exhibit some, if not all of the characteristics and phenomena that we observe in complex systems. From this we can gain an understanding of how we interact with and hence perceive the universe and how the stuff may generate the universe that we observe.

There are a lot of concepts associated with complexity science that currently have no generally agreed and precise definitions and it is not the intention of this work to resolve those issues. Therefore I will use the constructs in the most generalised way and wherever possible avoid them at all costs.

All the constructs we have are intellectual creations of the human mind based upon perceived interactions within the stuff. Therefore every construct associated with current physics and complexity science can be said to be derivatives of one or more pure characteristics of the stuff. I will try to only apply what I would term first conceptual derivatives. For example our perceived space is fundamental to our universe and is a first derivative of some pure aspects of the stuff. Velocity may be a mathematical first derivative of our space with respect to our time but as a construct it is a second derivative as it relies upon our first derivative constructs of space and time. Therefore I cannot use the construct of velocity when describing the stuff.