I'd heard of brights before, but didn't know that it was possible to become a Bright (with a capital "B") until Tao, a frequent Church of the Churchless visitor, mentioned the brights web site in a recent comment.
This evening I learned enough about bright-ness to conclude that I could sign up as an official Bright.
You can be a lower case "bright" just by considering yourself to be such. But registering on the brights web site turns you into a honest to God nature "Bright."
Slipped up just now. Hope my reference to a supernatural entity doesn't void my registration. Because the essence of being a bright is a naturalistic worldview.
That fits me, since my sensibilities are becoming more and more Taoist. The way I see it, everything real is natural. Otherwise, it'd be unreal – fantasy, imagination, belief.
More accurately, those products of the human mind are real, but only in an extremely limited sense. They aren't lasting aspects of the natural world like trees, water, stars, frogs, and jellyfish are.
Or as gravity, electromagnetism, quarks, electrons, and black holes are.
I had to ponder what I mean by "natural" before I took the plunge and became a Bright (which took less than a minute and should only entail getting a newsletter emailed to me every month or so).
I'm entirely open to the possibility that realms of reality exist beyond the physical. Heck, so are physicists and cosmologists, since higher dimensions are a hot scientific topic these days, especially in string theory.
So would the existence of a higher dimension beyond the three of space and one of time that we're familiar with be natural, or supernatural?
Me, I'd call it a part of nature. A hitherto unconfirmed part that now has joined our understanding of what reality is all about.
Magnetism once was thought to point to a soul or god, a supernatural entity. Now we know better. Electrical and magnetic phenomena are governed by natural laws.
We haven't come to the end of our knowledge of those laws, for sure. So brights need to be open to an ever-expanding view of what is "natural."
Quantum entanglement, where particles separated by millions of miles (or even light years) change instantly in concert with each other, once was felt to be too strange to be real. But it is.
I agree with what J.B.S. Haldane said:
I have no doubt that in reality the future will be vastly more surprising than anything I can imagine. Now my own suspicion is that the Universe is not only queerer than we suppose, but queerer than we can suppose.