Those who read this book expecting an unreasoned endorsement of Eastern religion and philosophy will be disappointed. Laszlo does NOT say that consciousness arises from information fields. On p.153 he quotes Sri Aurobindo: "All is consciousness - at various levels of its own manifestation......this universe is a gradation of planes of consciousness."
It is true that Laszlo does not start from a position of religious faith, but that is not what this book is about as I see it. What Laszlo has done is to survey recent discoveries in cosmology, quantum physics, biology, and consciousness research, noting a number of "puzzles" which have emerged in this research, and has suggested a possible paradigm which he refers to as the A-field which could explain these puzzles. Thus, he suggests the A-field as a hypothesis which could be confirmed or refuted by further scientific research. He acknowledges his debt to the concept of Akasha in ancient Indian philosophy, but he does not insist that his scientific hypothesis of the A-field is exactly the same as Akasha.
Laszlo quotes from Sri Aurobindo because he hopes that his own scientific world-view could be integrated with ancient Indian philosophy, but I don't think that makes him a "subtle materialist". Laszlo does subscribe to the view that consciousness can evolve; those who believe in Eastern religion may disagree with that view, but it is up to them to argue their case.
Surely Religion and Science are both belief systems, as in science is the world explained to the best of our understanding and the modelling of everthing within that understanding. There is a need to believe in the science as there is to religion.
Our current models are only acurate to the extent that we know not more. The believe that these models explain as the same belief as a godhead except in science the godhead is the law, theroy or model.