Christopher Michael Langan

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Cognitive-Theoretic Model of the Universe or CTMU

The Cognitive-Theoretic Model of the Universe or CTMU (pronounced “cat-mew” is the first self-simulation theory of the relationship between mind and reality. Its author, Christopher Michael Langan, has been billed as “the smartest man in America”, with an IQ reported by 20/20 and other media sources to have been measured at around 195.


In the CTMU, UBT (unbound telesis) is the ground-state of existence arrived at by stripping away the constraints of reality. Since there are no distributed constraints to limit its content, UBT is all-inclusive, infinite potential, and the source of all freedom.

Reality is created by filtratively emerging from this potential by the process of telic recursion. Since reality has a self-defined informational boundary distinguishing it from its complement (unactualized potential or unreality), it has recognizable content and structure. On the other hand, UBT is “a realm of zero constraint and infinite possibility where neither boundary nor content exists.”

Published Feb 20, 2022

Keith Woods: “First part of my interview with Chris Langan, where we discuss intelligence, his Cognitive-Theoretic Model of the Universe, its place in Western philosophy, religion, God and the afterlife.”

5:38 Tying insights together, CTMU

12:46 What philosophers got close?

16:29 Why this universe? It’s the best possible outcome.

18:59 What is the end purpose of conscious being?

21:04 the ontological argument

22:51 Simulation and the veil of Maya, traditionalist cosmology

25:19 Perennialism, meta-religious framework, removing the conflicts between them

28:18 Mystical experiences

29:46 Nature of the soul, afterlife

33:23 NDEs, paranormal experiences

36:37 Metaphysics of reincarnation, transhumanism

The Long Now Foundation

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The Long Now Foundation

is a nonprofit established in 01996 to foster long-term thinking.

Our work encourages imagination at the timescale of civilization — the next and last 10,000 years —
a timespan we call the long now.

Long Now Org