His basic thesis was that the ground of an era establishes the perceptual limits of humans living under its spell, and thus can't, itself, be directly perceived. The analogy was his joke: "I don't know who first discovered water, but I know it wasn't a fish." He grappled with this problem first in an essay about "anti-environments" which was before he came up with the oft-misunderstood cliché "the medium is the message". The idea was that we can't consciously perceive the reality of an environment that we are in until it becomes possible to leave it. This suggests several things about the Electric Universe Theory:
- The dominance of the Standard Model of Physics is a manifestation of the mechanical era that preceded the electrical era, and at most exhibits only subconscious influences of the electrical era in which it actually resides. Any percepts that "leak" remain in the downmarket; and
- The mere fact that the Electric Universe Model is now perceptible enough to challenge the old standard implies that there is already an anti-environment to it, and that we are in transition to this new environment, the parameters of which we will only be able to perceive through great effort and indirect evidence, and which will probably not become mainstream but will remain downmarket; and finally
- Electric Universe Theory will become the dominant conscious scientific and cultural paradigm for this era. This will become the foundation as the construction of the next foundation is undertaken as a precessional effect.