Bennett was a modernist/liberal, I suspect, unlike the milieu in which he appeared. He was, along with Ouspensky, a draftee into the Ouspensky (Gurdjieff) circle and produced his remarkable The Dramatic Universe.
That milieu was not modernist/liberal but did project a form of materialism as a challenge to scientism, using the materialism of ancient Samkhya, remarkably modernized by Bennett.
The interest here is the way he considers three related domains: the hyponomic, autonomic, and hypernomic realms. This division is highly useful because it points to a universal materialism on three levels, that of physics, chemistry, etc, that of life, and a hypernomic ‘spiritual’ realm, which isn’t spiritual but the higher materialism of a domain that man can barely detect. That’s the point, along the lines of ancient materialist Samkhya: the spiritual realms is really a highly material or at least ‘natural’ realm. Evolution then becomes the ‘reconciling’ or third factor in a dialectic of hypo and hypernomic realms. a magnificent, if speculative, resolution of the hopeless confusions of evolutionary theories. We can’t reduce evolution to the hyponomic realm. And the extension is not a creationist/religious alternative. The hypernomic is almost invisible to man who flounders hopelessly in ‘spiritual’ confusions. But man does connect with the hypernomic, a la Bennett, in the factor of consciousness (which really means the ‘self-consciousness’ in some kind of meditative sense). That’s a bold consideration: man is just at the boundary of the hypernomic, and his mechanical consciousness or animal sensitivity, can jump to a higher form, as he interacts with the hypernomic.
This kind of thinking needs more work, but as an intelligible ‘science fiction’ is at least not as crackpot as Darwinian fundamentalist scientism.
I thought I would put up some more material on Bennett’s (outlandish) perspective on evolution and history. (The material on the eonic effect is much better) I am not a proponent of these views, bu…