Read The Tao of Physics: An Exploration of the Parallels between Modern Physics and Eastern Mysticism by Fritjof Capra Online


Here is the book that brought the mystical implications of subatomic physics to popular consciousness for the very first time—way back in 1975. This special edition celebrates the thirty-fifth anniversary of this early Shambhala best seller that has gone on to become a classic. It includes a new preface by the author, in which he reflects on the further discoveries and devHere is the book that brought the mystical implications of subatomic physics to popular consciousness for the very first time—way back in 1975. This special edition celebrates the thirty-fifth anniversary of this early Shambhala best seller that has gone on to become a classic. It includes a new preface by the author, in which he reflects on the further discoveries and developments that have occurred in the years since the book’s original publication. “Physicists do not need mysticism,” Dr. Capra says, “and mystics do not need physics, but humanity needs both.” It’s a message of timeless importance....

Title : The Tao of Physics: An Exploration of the Parallels between Modern Physics and Eastern Mysticism
Author :
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ISBN : 9781590308356
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 368 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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The Tao of Physics: An Exploration of the Parallels between Modern Physics and Eastern Mysticism Reviews

  • James Hollomon
    2019-01-26 11:15

    Don't look to Capra for a highly disciplined discourse on particle physics or the nature of cosmology. Nor is this book a deep exploration of Taoism or other Eastern Religious Philosophy. Rather, it is a fascinating mental adventure showing the ways the two schools of thought often developed in parallel and came to similar conclusions from very different beginning points. The author's own words in the epilogue sum it up nicely. "Science does not need mysticism and mysticism does not need science, but man needs both."That's what I said before reading extensively in physics and cosmology and before watching so many charlatans and the honest but misguided people duped by them try to sell Woo-Woo in place of solid science. I wish I had not written the review above, but I'll let it stand as mute warning to be careful of lay interpretations of science. And a Medical Doctor like Dr. Robert Lanza or a New Age/Alternative Medicine guru like Depak Chopra is not a particle physicist. Their pronouncements on quantum mechanics are no more valid than mine would be if I suddenly set out to perform delicate surgery. It's very true that weird, seemingly mystical things do go on at the tiny scale of the atom where quantum physics operates. It is NOT true, however, that you can scale that quantum weirdness up to the macro level where human beings, planets, galaxies and universes operate, and draw realistic inferences on the parallels between the macro world and Eastern mysticism. Here's a good discussion of the Woo effect and why it should be avoided, provided by British Physicist Dr. Phil Moriarty on the Sixty Symbols Channel on YouTube.

  • Chiara
    2019-02-09 06:14

    Ok so I have a small confession to make. I think I might be overrating books. Or at least it looks like it from other reviews I recently read. I usually read them after rating the books myself but sometimes I go the other way around. Today is one of those days. I must say I find it harder to criticize a bad non–fiction book than a bad novel. And that could be because, first of all, with non–fiction books it's hardly a matter of writing style (unless it's a really good book or a really bad one) and second of all I'm easily amazed by the knowledge I acquire on things I had no previous idea of. Having said that, I really liked this book. As the book title itself states it's about drawing parallels between modern physics and eastern beliefs. Let me just say: there's actually a lot to talk about, more than I would have imagined. It gives a nice overview on eastern cultures and on those physical phenomena that can be linked to them. I thought it a really interestingly mind–blowing idea I then discovered being already largely discussed in the physics world, with a lot of actual physicists having studied eastern philosophies and all. This book does a good job in underlining similarities between very different culture fields, something I've always found amazingly fascinating. I would recommend it to anyone who is always been curious of eastern cultures but never fulfilled that curiosity.

  • Ben
    2019-01-29 05:50

    It is widely recognized, at least by those outside of science, that scientists are notorious bunglers when it comes to philosophical matters. So it is not surprising, though hardly excusable, that Capra's book displays a level of incompetence that should be immediately obvious to anyone with even a cursory background in logic or philosophy. As a matter of fact, it would be surprising if such an unqualified admirer of Taoism, whose writings Capra notes approvingly are "full of passages reflecting the Taoist's contempt of reasoning" (p. 113), should display much in the way of sound reasoning. While I was not especially sympathetic to Capra's thesis even before I read the book, I at least had high hopes for a compelling argument for his case, but that was wishful thinking. The thesis is that the worldviews of Eastern mysticism provide the best framework for understanding modern physics, and that all the advances in physics in the 20th century unanimously confirm these worldviews. However, the picture that emerges is rather one of the utter incompatibility of Eastern mysticism with physics of any kind, classical or modern.In order to fully appreciate the force of this book, it is important to keep in mind not only the results of physics, but also the scientific endeavor itself. That endeavor consists of an incredibly strenuous exertion of the human rational faculties to uncover truths about reality that we do not know ahead of time, and to systematize the results of investigation into rigorous theories explaining the phenomena. In contrast to this, according to Capra, "all concepts about reality formed by the human mind are void" (p. 97); "the human intellect can never comprehend the Tao" (p. 113); "whenever you want to achieve anything, you should start with its opposite" (p. 115); "words can never express the ultimate truth" (p. 122); "to believe that our abstract concepts of separate 'things' and 'events' are realities of nature is an illusion" (p. 131); the particles of modern physics "are merely idealizations which are useful from a practical point of view, but have no fundamental significance" (p. 137); "all the concepts we use to describe nature . . . are not features of reality, as we tend to believe, but creations of the mind" (p. 161); "the idea of a constant 'self' undergoing successive experiences is an illusion" (p. 212); "all phenomena in the world are nothing but the illusory manifestation of the mind and have no reality on their own . . . what appears to be external does not exist in reality" (p. 277); "ultimately, there are no parts at all in this interconnected web" (p. 330); "there is no absolute truth in science" (p. 337). This collection of quotes does indeed give an excellent picture of the foundation that Eastern mysticism has to offer for science, but is it even possible to think that this view of the world constitutes fertile soil for the scientific enterprise?A striking feature of many of Capra's central arguments is the profound gulf between his premises and his conclusions, which would be simply laughable if it were not for the fact that so many people stand to be badly led astray. For instance, Capra leaps from Einstein's famous equation E=mc^2 to the most astounding claim in the whole book, that "modern physicists . . . deny the existence of any material substance" (p. 204). Can this be serious? This is the logical equivalent of saying that "magnetism has been discovered to be an aspect of an electromagnetic field, therefore magnetism doesn't exist" or "scientists have discovered that houses are made of wood, therefore houses don't exist". One of Capra's favorite mantras is that modern physics has discovered that material particles "are not distinct entities" (p. 209). Even if we accept for the sake of the argument his repeated confusion of existence and measurability, it is difficult to see how the fact that particles interact, influence each other, and in some cases are even indistinguishable, means that they are not distinct entities.If it were not enough to repeatedly outrage every principle of sound reasoning, Capra is equally adept at mangling the most profound discoveries of 20th century physics. He dwells at length on Einstein's General Relativity, arguing that it proves that "geometry is not inherent in nature but is imposed upon it by the mind" (p. 162). In actual fact, General Relativity is the scientific rock upon which all the floundering ships in the fleet of subjectivism are dashed. From Einstein we have learned that the true structure of space and time is actually so incredibly foreign to our everyday intuitions that it is not even possible to understand it without the formidable apparatus of non-Euclidean geometry. Capra goes on in the same chapter to give an example that "shows that we can always determine whether a surface is curved or not, just by making geometrical measurements of its surface, and by comparing the results with those predicted by Euclidean geometry. If there is a discrepancy, the surface is curved; and the larger the discrepancy is - for a given size of figures - the stronger the curvature" (p. 176). But what is it that is curved or not? Something created by our mind? Why are we doing an experiment at all if the geometry of space is nothing but a creation of the mind? But a mind sunk in the quagmires of Eastern mysticism cannot readily recognize such an obvious point. In all of science there is nothing more "objective" than Einstein's General Relativity, a fact of which Einstein himself was well aware.But this discussion brings up another important point. I would like to know, if it is true that in modern physics "cause and effect lose their meaning" (p. 81) how, even in principle, anyone could ever do a scientific experiment in atomic physics. If the answer is that cause and effect are just illusions of the sensory world, then the question remains, how can we ever do a scientific experiment? Whence comes this illusion, and how can it possibly be trusted to be reliable? If the answer is that cause and effect are indeed principles of macroscopic and sensory reality, but that they are not a part of the unseen "ultimate reality" which underlies all the rest, then I ask, from whence arises this lawfulness in sensory reality? How do we build up from the constituents of a reality where cause and effect are meaningless to an observable world where they are no longer meaningless? This constitutes as insurmountable a leap for logic as it does for science.As the book drags on, Capra continues to weary us with his absurdities. On p. 288 he claims that fundamental constants are "arbitrary parameters". What does this even mean? Is Planck's constant arbitrary? I would like to see Capra replace it with something else. On p. 334 he says that "scientists do not deal with truth (in the sense of a precise correspondence between the description and the described phenomena); they deal with limited and approximate descriptions of reality." This is certainly contradicted by the staggering precision achieved in modern physics, both in theories and experiments, but such a consideration would most likely not intimidate a mind infatuated with contradictions. Such was certainly not the mind of Johannes Kepler, who spent several years of his life working to account for barely a one tenth of one degree of angle disparity between the orbit of Mars and theory, convinced that the human mind, created in the image of a rational God, could precisely learn the truth about the rational creation of that God. How foreign such a mindset must really be to Eastern mystical thought. Would Kepler have undergone such Herculean intellectual exertions had he shared Capra's conviction that he could attain only limited and approximate knowledge, or would he simply have shrugged his shoulders and decided that Ptolemaic astronomy was "close enough"?But it is least of all to history that we should look for confirmation of Capra's thesis. In the early chapters he blames Aristotle and Christianity for the ensuing "lack of interest in the material world" (p. 22). But what cultures ever displayed a more profound and studious disregard for the material world than the Eastern mystical traditions? And why would they hold in high regard something that is at best a creation of the human mind and at worst a deceptive illusion? On p. 198-199 Capra considers the idea of an oscillating and organic universe, and goes on to say that "the scale of this ancient myth is indeed staggering: it has taken the human mind more than two thousand years to come up again with a similar concept." But on the contrary, it took the human mind so many thousands of years to overcome organismic and oscillatory theories of the universe. These theories were ubiquitous in all the great ancient cultures, from the Egyptian to the Babylonian to the Indian to the Chinese to the Mayan to the Greek, and it was exactly this conception that so effectively stifled the optimistic and rational view of nature that is indispensable for science.In conclusion, Capra has done a masterful job of presenting the relevance of Eastern mysticism to modern physics, but even a passing consideration readily reveals that this relevance is only the thorough incompatibility of Eastern mysticism with science of any kind. As Western culture steadily abandons rationality and the human ability to know truth, the philosophies of Eastern mysticism do indeed continue to gain credence and ascendance, but to exactly the same extent we will surely witness the decline of science.

  • Anna
    2019-01-21 06:09

    «Τα αντίθετα είναι συμπληρωματικά», ισχυρίζεται η σύγχρονη φυσική και αυτό έχει πυροδοτήσει μια σχολή επιστημόνων και μη, οι οποίοι προσπαθούν να αναλύσουν τη φιλοσοφία που προκύπτει πίσω από την επιστημονική θεωρία. Πολλοί προχωρούν ακόμα παραπέρα και προσπαθούν να τη συνδέσουν με φιλοσοφικές ή θρησκευτικές τάσεις που ήδη επικρατούσαν στην ανθρωπότητα, ενώ ταυτόχρονα επιδιώκουν να «φτιάξουν» παράξενες ερμηνείες – αποτελέσματα, χαρακτηριστικότερες των οποίων είναι οι τηλεοπτικές σειρές, όπου στρεβλώνεται ο χώρος, ο χρόνος, η αιτιότητα, η επαναληψιμότητα και ώρες ώρες η ίδια η λογική. Στο παρόν βιβλίο, ο συγγραφέας, θεωρητικός φυσικός σε κορυφαία πανεπιστήμια των ΗΠΑ (είναι Αυστριακός και όχι από κάποια ανατολική χώρα όπως νόμιζα αρχικά) προσπαθεί να συνδέσει αυτή τη φιλοσοφία με τις διδασκαλίες των ανατολικών θρησκειών (Ινδουισμός, Βουδισμός, Ταοϊσμός, Ζεν). Η προσπάθεια είναι άκρως αξιόλογη και το βιβλίο προτείνεται στους λάτρεις αυτού του είδους (το είδος είναι κάτι σαν science – religion – spirituality). Ο συγγραφέας γνωρίζει και τα δυο κομμάτια (θρησκεία και επιστήμη) που αναφέρει και τα συνδέει όμορφα μεταξύ τους, χωρίς να κάνει κατήχηση (στις ανατολικές θρησκείες εξάλλου αυτό δεν συνηθίζεται) αλλά και χωρίς να γίνεται γραφικός. Δεν περιλαμβάνονται μαθηματικά, οπότε τα κεφάλαια της φυσικής μπορεί να τα διαβάσει και να τα κατανοήσει ο καθένας, οι των θετικών σπουδών φυσικά θα τα βρουν πιο εύκολα.Το βασικό αξίωμα του βιβλίου είναι ότι με βάση τη κβαντομηχανική και την κατάρρευση της αιτιότητας, πλέον το καθετί γίνεται αντιληπτό μέσα από την αλληλεπίδρασή του με το Σύμπαν. Πλέον δεν υπάρχει καμία απόλυτη αλήθεια για τα πράγματα, παρά όλα εκδηλώνονται ανάλογα με την περίσταση. Το Σύμπαν αποτελεί μια ολότητα και ένα κομμάτι αυτής της ολότητας παρακολουθούμε, με την έκφανση που αποφασίζεται κάθε φορά, ανάλογα με τις συνθήκες. Κάθε υποατομικό σωματίδιο είναι ένας ενεργειακός χορός, σαν αυτό που χορεύουν διαρκώς ο Κρίσνα, ο Βούδας και οι λοιποί θεοί, οι οποίοι είναι ένας θεός, με διαφορετικές εκφάνσεις – εμφανίσεις κάθε φορά (ας με συγχωρέσουν οι οπαδοί των θρησκειών αυτών, το βιβλίο το διάβασα πριν πολλά χρόνια και δεν θυμάμαι καλά τις διδαχές των θρησκειών). Ενέργεια – ύλη, σωματίδιο – κύμα, κίνηση – ακινησία, ύπαρξη – ανυπαρξία, όλα είναι έννοιες που από μόνες τους δεν έχουν καμία σημασία, παρά μόνο σε σχέση με το πώς τις αντιλαμβανόμαστε εμείς. Έτσι, από τη στιγμή που θα στρέψουμε τα μάτια μας σε μια έννοια, τα στρέφουμε απευθείας και στην αντίθετή της, όπως ακριβώς διδάσκουν και οι Ανατολίτες δάσκαλοι.Οι ανατολικοί μυστικιστές θεωρούν τις έννοιες του χώρου και του χρόνου σαν ιδιαίτερες συνειδησιακές καταστάσεις. Οι έννοιες γιν και γιαγκ – αν και αντίθετες – θεωρούνται συμπληρωματικές, συνθέτουν τη βάση της κινέζικης σκέψης και όλη την ουσία του κόσμου. Η κβαντομηχανική, από την άλλη, περιγράφει τον κόσμο με πιθανότητες και μόνο αφού εκδηλωθεί μια κατάσταση μπορεί να περιγράψει τι έγινε τελικά (αν και όχι γιατί έγινε, παρά μόνο πώς έγινε και πόσο πιθανό ήταν να συμβεί). Το βιβλίο είναι γεμάτο με θέματα που ιντριγκάρουν και ενδιαφέρουν τον κόσμο, φαίνεται εξάλλου από το Hollywood πόση είναι η επίδραση της φιλοσοφίας της κβαντικής φυσικής. Η άνοδος της γιόγκα, του διαλογισμού και άλλων αντίστοιχων τεχνικών νομίζω ότι το καθιστά εξίσου πρωτότυπο, παρόλο που γράφτηκε πριν 30 χρόνια.

  • Lo
    2019-02-09 13:17

    Well, this is my first one star on good reads, that means this book was even worse than the Third Hunger Games book.The main reason for the one star is just my complete disappointment in this book. I went in to reading 'The Tao fo Physics' expecting to find something that correlated elements of quantum mechanics to the insights of Eastern mysticism and philosophy (which I feel was a reasonable expectation). However, what I found was an author who not only was dull but founded his 'correlations' on the beliefs of famous physicists and philosophers. For a good 1/3 of the book, you, the reader, are submitted to a quote by Einstein (or insert another well known physicist name here) and then a quote by the Buddha (or insert another philosopher, unknown or known here) and Capra going, "see they are saying the same thing!!". Nothing irks me more than this in nonfiction books about physics that target the general public - why have my own beliefs or both explaining things when I can say this landmark figure said this at some point (whether it be in context or not) and therefore it must be true. Ironically, the one thing I really do feel Eastern mysticism and physics have in common are that both demand that if you seek more knowledge, you must always question everything and through this incessant questioning, you begin to gain understanding. Our author here could use a little more of that in his writing ability. I have very little positive to say about this book unfortunately. I learned a little bit more about Eastern philosophies than I knew, but I feel like there are other books out there that could have conveyed the information Capra tries to present more effectively. I really would not recommend this book to anyone - I fell asleep ~20 times reading this book (no joke, even when I wasn't tired this book put me to sleep), I feel like I gained very little knowledge or understanding from this book, and at some points, it was painfully banal to read. Capra is not good at explaining physics, Eastern mysticism, and certainly not the link between the two.

  • Adam
    2019-02-12 09:58

    This book bridged a major divide in my perception of the world, bringing together ideas of Quantum Physics and Eastern Mysticism. Capra, trained in both disciplines, does a fine job comparing quotes and emerging universal perceptions of the early pioneers in quantum physics, against philosophers and yogis of the ancient religions of the East. In a beautiful way, you come to discover that each of these disparate disciplines are somehow describing the universe through strikingly similar metaphors. Its not too sci-techy for the average reader, and further gives a great overview of the major Eastern religions, their early founders and principles they are based off.

  • Riku Sayuj
    2019-02-07 05:12

    Not entirely sure how to take this book. Will come back to it after updating myself on the latest developments.

  • Johnny
    2019-02-09 10:19

    This book would have been better called "The Buddha of Physics", or something like that. Throughout the whole book there is hardly a single reference to taoism, and certainly no understanding of taoism and its relation to other asian religions.The great majority of the spiritual/religious references in this book are from Indian Buddhism and Hinduism. A mild smattering of zen. Hardly any Chinese Buddhism.I found this book incredibly boring. I think I actually started skimming towards the end, which for me before I had a daughter was pretty extreme. I think I found one interesting idea in this whole book, the physics concept of bootstrapping, which took up no more than one or two sentences and a footnote.If you are really interested in learning how taoism, or asian mysticism in general, relates to modern concepts in physics, the Dancing Wu Li Masters by Gary Zukav is much much better.

  • Erik
    2019-02-05 08:07

    A book that fundamentally changed the way I felt and thought deep down inside at a time of my life when I needed some sort of metaphysical path.When you strip away the mathematics from the concepts of quantum mechanics and strong theory, etc., you get a bewildering array of thought-provking images that conjure up those posed by the best koans that Zen has to offer. Eastern mysticism meets modern physics.You will understand that everything is connected.

  • Stian
    2019-02-01 10:54

    I bought this book some 7 years ago, when I was fifteen. At the time I was getting increasingly interested in physics, and at the same time Buddhism. Unfortunately, I also read another book around this time called 'What The Bleep Do We Know?' which turned out to be nothing but 'quantum woo' - that is, pretending that quantum mechanics is all kinds of things that it simply isn't. I decided that The Tao Of Physics is probably something similar and it's been collecting dust on my shelf ever since. Reading this book, though, I realised that this isn't really what this book is. Sure, there are legitimate criticisms to be made here. For example, some of the similarities are superficial at best. The part that really struck me as overly silly is this part right before section III of the book. On the left page you see, essentially, some scribbled math equations. On the right page you see some Hindu scriptures. I mean, come on! This means absolutely nothing. Another serious criticism has come from Peter Woit, about the fact that Capra uses (and continued to use) the bootstrap theory: 'The Tao of Physics was completed in December 1974, and the implications of the November Revolution one month earlier that led to the dramatic confirmations of the standard-model quantum field theory clearly had not sunk in for Capra (like many others at that time). What is harder to understand is that the book has now gone through several editions, and in each of them Capra has left intact the now out-of-date physics, including new forewords and afterwords that with a straight face deny what has happened. The foreword to the second edition of 1983 claims, "It has been very gratifying for me that none of these recent developments has invalidated anything I wrote seven years ago. In fact, most of them were anticipated in the original edition," a statement far from any relation to the reality that in 1983 the standard model was nearly universally accepted in the physics community, and the bootstrap theory was a dead idea ... Even now, Capra's book, with its nutty denials of what has happened in particle theory, can be found selling well at every major bookstore. It has been joined by some other books on the same topic, most notably Gary Zukav's The Dancing Wu-Li Masters. The bootstrap philosophy, despite its complete failure as a physical theory, lives on as part of an embarrassing New Age cult, with its followers refusing to acknowledge what has happened.'Although this is a valid criticism, it ignores the biggest part of the book. In the first half of the book Capra simply discusses the similarities in thought between these two distinctly different ways of thinking - an intuitive and 'spiritual' way contra the empirical and rational way of science. He doesn't imply that there is something mystical about quantum mechanics, nor does he pull any New Age-trickery trying to fool you in the way that Deepak Chopra might. For the most part in this book Capra is simply looking at the interesting similarities between these two ways of thinking - and they are striking. It's not like Capra is the first physicist to notice this. Capra uses a lot of quotes in this book (from scientists and religious figures), and here are three interesting ones: "The general notions about human understanding...which are illustrated by discoveries in atomic physics are not in the nature of things wholly unfamiliar, wholly unheard of, or new. Even in our own culture they have a history, and in Buddhist and Hindu thought a more considerable and central place. What we shall find is an exemplification, and encouragement, and a refinement of old wisdom." Robert Oppenheimer, 1954."For a parallel to the lesson of atomic theory...[we must turn] to those kinds of epistemological problems with which already thinkers like the Buddha and Lao Tzu have been confronted, when trying to harmonize our position as spectators and actors in the great drama of existence." Niels Bohr, 1958"The great scientific contribution in theoretical physics that has come from Japan since the last war may be an indication of a certain relationship between philosophical ideas in the tradition of the Far East and the philosophical substance of quantum theory." Werner Heisenberg, 1958And here is a picture of Niels Bohr's coat-of-arms, featuring the yin-yang symbol and the words 'contraria sunt complementa,' meaning 'opposites are complementary.'At the end of the day I simply think about this book as an interesting musing on different ways of thinking about the world and different ways of getting to answers,and some of those answers happened (by complete chance; there is so mystical connection implied here!) to be correct - or at least in the same ballpark! To me, it also underscores what a spriritual endeavour science potentially can be.

  • Jen
    2019-02-07 09:00

    I really liked this book; but I admit it had flaws, mainly due to the actual content in relation to the title. First, this book reads more like a review of quantum physics (a subject I'm not qualified to give a critique on in terms of the book's accuracy) than religion. In many cases, the author goes on for pages about quantum physics, in technical detail, and then at the very end sticks in a throw away line about how this is similar to Buddhism or Hinduism because they both believe we are all connected, just like on the quantum level. I thought the way the two were tied together was in all reality, weak.However, having said this, I liked the book for two main reasons: 1- I'm fascinated by quantum physics (even though I have no formal education) and I'm always looking for books that explain it in simpler terms to me. There was probably nothing new in the book, but for me, he explained things in ways that enabled me to make better connections. I don't have the book in front of me to give examples, but for one, I finally understood why there aren't really any fundamentally basic particles and the importance of the role of the observer to the experiment. I also gained a better understanding of the basics of protons, quarks, neutrinos, etc. This knowledge by itself enriched me from a spiritual point of view, which brings me to my next reason for liking the book:2- The well laid out explanation of physics allowed me to make the connection to spirituality on my own. In truth, he didn't really need to spell out the similarities and connections to any religion, because on my own, I was able to reach outside the world of quantum physics to postulate a bigger meaning in all aspects of life. I understand that most scientists, whose jobs require them to be very rigid in their theories, experiments and conclusions, probably cringe at taking science into the spiritual realm, but in the realities of everyday life, we don't live on such a rigid scale. I can't separate my feelings, thoughts, physical reactions, spirituality etc. into neat little boxes like a science experiment- they all blend together to form my life. So to me, it seems inevitable that the more we learn about the world and what it is made of from a scientific viewpoint, the more we are going to ask, what does it all mean in the bigger picture of life?That is what this book did for me; it made me think about the overall implications of what we are learning scientifically about the world and wonder what it means to us on a human level. I believe from both a scientific and spiritual side that we are all connected and, without getting all new age-y, the implications of this can be profound because we are able to see that what we do to ourselves, each other and the planet are not done in isolation- there is a rippling effect across the universe. I'll stop here as I don't want to preach; I'll just say I recommend this book to people like me, who are spiritual, but also appreciate the rational science behind the 'mystique.' I like the balance between the two.Those who are not spiritual in any way; who only believe in that which can be proven with rigid scientific experiments probably need to stay away from this book.

  • Stefania Signorelli
    2019-01-19 08:01

    Quanto ho amato questo saggio. Letto da giovanissima senza nulla sapere né di fisica né di filosofia orientale , ho continuato a non capirci seriamente nulla per il resto della vita ma rimanendo profondamente turbata e affascinata.

  • S.Ach
    2019-01-26 06:13

    When I was a kid, my grandmother used to tell me a story about a king who had gone to Brahma, the creator of the universe, to invite him to preside over the inaugural ceremony of a temple he had built. Brahma, excused himself for a minute, and returned to give his consent exactly a minute later. The king returned happily to his kingdom on earth. But, lo and behold, 1200 years had passed. At this point of the story, my grandmother would smile at me and say, "What is a minute for Brahma, is 1200 years for earthlings." My 10 year-self would just be intrigued by the story.Years later, when I got acquainted with Einstein's theory of relativity and the 'personal' nature of time and space, the first question came to my mind, what came first? Einstein's theory or my grandmother's story? Vivekananda in his famous address at Chicago said, "From the high spiritual flights of the Vedanta philosophy, of which the latest discoveries of science seem like echoes, …." Well, echoes or not, but the striking parallels cannot be ignored. And not only with Hindu religion, but also with most oriental philosophies. This book sketches out some of those parallels.The most important characteristic of the Eastern world view - one could almost say the essence of it - is the awareness of the unity and mutual interrelation of all things and events, the experience of all phenomena in the world as manifestations of a basic oneness. All things are seen as interdependent and inseparable parts of this cosmic whole; as different manifestations of the same ultimate reality. The Eastern traditions constantly refers to this ultimate, indivisible reality which manifests itself in all things, and of which all things are parts. It is called Brahman in Hinduism, Dharmakaya in Buddhism, Tao in Taoism.... ... ...... ... ...Quantum theory forces us to see the universe not as a collection of physical objects, but rather as a complicated web of relations between the various parts of a unified whole. The western approach, which reflects predominantly in classical physics, is that of reductionism. We can understand the thing, if we can understand its basic constituents. So classical physics takes a lots of assumptions and help of constants to go deeper, finer into substances. On the contrary, the eastern approach, which now the modern physics seem to adapt, tends towards holism. The whole is greater and more complex than the sum of its parts. And there is more ambiguity than constants. Quantum theory thus reveals an essential interconnectedness of the universe. It shows that we cannot decompose the world into independently existing smallest units. As we penetrate into matter, we find that it is made of particles, but these are not the 'basic building blocks' in the sense of Democritus and Newton. They are merely idealizations which are useful from a practical point of view, but have no fundamental significance. In the words of Neils Bohr, "isolated material particles are abstractions, their properties being definable and observable only through their interactions with other systemsConflicting and confusing theories exist simultaneously in oriental theories. As if sides of same coin. Nothing is constant. The laws are dependent on the observer than any kind of absolutes. And if we see the quantum theory, that falls in line with similar thought process. The cat is neither dead nor alive, you see.In the words of OppenheimerIf we ask, for instance, whether the position of the electron remains the same, we must say ‘no’; if we ask whether the electron’s position changes with time, we must say ‘no’; if we ask whether the electron is at rest, we must say ‘no’; if we ask whether it is in motion, we must say ‘no’.The reality of the atomic physicist, like the reality of the Eastern mystic, transcends the narrow framework of opposite and contradictory concepts. The Upanishads say:"It moves, it moves not,It is far, and it is near,It is within all this,And it is outside of all this.I don't know much about Buddhism and Taoism. But, with my limited knowledge on Hinduism, I can't call it entirely scientific. However, the parallels of some of its theories with modern science indeed make me question, "How did they know, then?"

  • Denis Vasilev
    2019-02-04 05:55

    Идея интересная, стиль написания не обрадовал.

  • Piyush
    2019-02-17 13:15

    Eastern philosophy is not a singular concept - it consists of many schools of thought; some of which the author has conveniently cherry-picked and force fit to draw parallels with Quantum Physics.To be quite frank, the book neither has literary merit, nor does it present any groundbreakingly profound idea. There is a pretence of the latter, but anyone with half a knowledge of philosophy will see right through it. The only merit in the book, if one is to force himself to find one, is to see how an author can paraphrase a simple idea again and again, hiding it under the guise of different metaphors and clothing it in different phrases, and make a whole book out of it. It is to go to the other end of the intentional fallacy and see that the author has produced a tribute to Queneau's Excercises in Style, albeit accidentally. Infact, I can reproduce the whole book here - and save you the time and expense. Here it is:Nature/ environment/ the territory/features of reality/heaven and earth/the universe/material world/matterIS NOT passive/inert/in static equilibrium/still, BUT IS dancing/dynamic/moves/in vibrating motion with rhythmic patterns/ceaseless motion. Notions of Space and Time are merely constructs of the mind/forms of thought/maps of reality/limited/illusory/relative/ intellectual constructs/moh-maya/belong to the realm of experience/exist in relation to our particularising consciousness. And that modern physics agrees.

  • Neelesh Marik
    2019-02-11 09:09

    A seminal classic that was one of the first pieces of reading that began to change my worldview, and till today, remains one of the first attempted ‘consilience’ of science and spirit. Rather than a conventional book summary or review, I would like to capture key sentences/ quotes that adorn the terrain like a string of pearls:Chapter 1 – Modern Physics: A Path with a HeartAny path is only a path, and there is no affront, to oneself or to others, in dropping it if that is what your heart tells you....Look at every path closely and deliberately. Try it as many times as you think necessary. Then ask yourself, and yourself alone, one question....Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn’t it is of no use. - Carlos Castaneda, The Teachings of Don JuanChapter 2 – Knowing and SeeingA mystical experience, therefore, is not any more unique than a modern experiment in physics. On the one hand, it is not less sophisticated either, although its sophistication is of a very different kind. The complexity and efficiency of the physicist’s technical apparatus is matched, if not surpassed, by that of the mystic’s consciousness – both physical and spiritual – in deep meditation. The scientists and mystics, then, have developed highly sophisticated methods of observing nature which are inaccessible to the lay person.- Fritjof CapraChapter 3 – Beyond LanguageThe contradiction so puzzling to the ordinary way of thinking comes from the fact that we have to use language to communicate our inner experience which in its very nature transcends linguistics- D.T. SuzukiChapter 4 – The New PhysicsAl my attempts to adapt the theoretical foundation of physics to this (new type of) knowledge failed completely. It was as if the ground had been pulled from under one, to no firm foundation to be seen anywhere, upon which another one could have been built- Albert EinsteinChapter 5 – HinduismAll actions take place in time by the interweaving of the forces of nature, but the man lost in selfish delusion thinks that he himself is the actor. But the man who knows the relation between the forces of nature and actions, sees how some forces of Nature work upon other forces of nature, and becomes not their slave- The Bhagavad GitaChapter 6 – BuddhismAshvaghosa probably had a strong influence on Nagarjuna, the most intellectual Mahayana philosopher, who used a highly sophisticated dialectic to show the limitations of all concepts of reality........Hence he gave it the name ‘Sunyata’, ‘the void’, or ‘emptiness’, a term which is equivalent to Ashvaghosa’s ‘tathata’ or ‘suchness’; when the futility of all conceptual thinking is recognized, reality is experienced as pure suchness.- Fritjof CapraChapter 7 – Chinese ThoughtThat which lets now the dark, now the light appear is Tao- I Ching, the Book of ChangesChapter 8 – TaosimDisputation is a proof of not seeing clearly.- Chuang TzuChapter 9 – ZenBefore you study Zen, mountains are mountains and rivers are rivers; while you are studying Zen, mountains are no longer mountains and rivers are no longer rivers; but once you have had enlightenment, mountains are once again mountains and rivers again rivers.- Zen sayingChapter 10 – The Unity of All ThingsOne is led to a new notion of unbroken wholeness which denies the classical idea of analyzability of the world into separately and independently existing parts...We have reversed the usual classical notion that the independent ‘elementary parts’ of the world are the fundamental reality, and that the various systems are merely particular contingent forms and arrangements of these parts. Rather, we say that inseparable quantum interconnectedness of the whole universe is the fundamental reality, and that relatively independently behaving parts are merely particular and contingent forms within this whole- David BohmChapter 11 – Beyond the World of OppositesIt moves. It moves not. It is far, and it is near. It is within all this, And It is outside of all this.- The UpanishadsChapter 12 – Space- TimeIf we speak of the space experience in meditation, we are dealing with an entirely different dimension....In this space-experience the temporal sequence is converted into a simultaneous co-existence, the side by side existence of things....and this again does not remain static but becomes a living continuum in which space and time are integrated- Lama GovindaChapter 13 – The Dynamic UniverseThe stillness in stillness is not the real stillness. Only when there is stillness in movement can the spiritual rhythm appear which pervades heaven and earth- Taoist textChapter 14 – Emptiness and FormWe may therefore regard matter as being constituted by the regions of space in which the field is extremely intense .....There is no place in this new kind of physics both for the field and matter, for the field is the only reality- Albert EinsteinThe Great Void cannot but consist of ch’i; this ch’i cannot but condense to form all things; and these things cannot but become dispersed so as to form (once more) the Great Void- Chang TsaiChapter 15 – The Cosmic DanceHis gestures wild and full of grace, precipitate the cosmic illusion; his flying arms and legs and the swaying of his torso produce- indeed, they are- the continuous creation-destruction of the universe, death exactly balancing birth, annihilation the end of every coming-forth- Heinrich Zimmer, on the Dance of ShivaChapter 16 – Quark Symmetries – A New Koan?The discovery of symmetric patterns in the particle world has led many physicists to believe that these patterns reflect the fundamental laws of nature. During the past fifteen years, a great deal of effort has been devoted to the search for an ultimate ‘fundamental symmetry’ that could incorporate all known particles and thus ‘explain’ the structure of matter. - Fritjof CapraChapter 17 – Patterns of ChangeHow do we come to think of things, rather than of processes in this absolute flux? By shutting our eyes to the successive events. It is an artificial attitude that makes sections in the stream of change, and calls them things....When we shall know the truth of things, we shall realize how absurd it is for us to worship isolated products of the incessant series of transformations as though they were eternal and real. Life is no thing or state of a thing, but a continuous movement or change.- Dr Sarvapalli RadhakrishnanChapter 18- InterpenetrationEach portion of matter may be conceived of as a garden full of plants, and as a pond full of fishes. But each branch of the plant, each member of the animal, each drop of its humours, is also such a garden or such a pond- Leibniz, in Monadology

  • Eva
    2019-01-19 12:54

    This book consists of a large part which is quite technical with matters of physics. Since I am not a physicist I do not propose to judge their validity. Instead I will take into account the central idea of the book which is that everything is connected and trying to take apart these connections and study them individually as science does is frustrating and to a large extent a fruitless endeavor since we can't explain the connection of everything to everything else.My conclusion from reading this book is that Science and Religion, it seems to me, are both man-made concepts as well as Language. This creates a continuous circle of miscomprehension whereby three incomplete concepts try to explain each other. On the one side we have the 'facts' of science and on the other the 'experiences' of the Eastern Religion. But what do these words mean and haven't they both evolved as concepts from the beginning of time. The fact that at some point they took their separate ways does not mean that they are not born out of the same world. So of course Tao and physics are connected. Whether one understands logic and reason better rather than the use of senses and belief is a matter of personal gratification and background. It does not alter the truth. And the truth is that both science and religion know that there are things that cannot be put into words. The difference is that science chooses to make a continuing effort to improve the practical life of the human being whereas religion accepts the incomprehensible state of being and chooses to help the human being exist imperfect as it is in knowledge.

  • Murray
    2019-01-27 09:16

    I'm afraid as hard as I tried I could not make this book work for me. The author discusses a lot about quantum physics (as it was understood in the 1970's) and eastern mysticism. He attempts to correlate the two. The assertions were broad and conjectural, and I ended up confused about both. That may be my fault, not the author's, but so be it.I was wading through another treatise on quantum physics and relativity at the same, Paul Davie's "The Goldilocks Enigma: Why is the Universe Just Right for Life?" I will write a separate review for this book eventually. Suffice it to say that Professor Davies has an insight that made more sense than anything Capra has to say. Quoting Dr. Davies: "The history of philosophy is so rich and diverse that it would be astonishing if theories emerging from science hadn't been foreshadowed in some vague way by somebody"That just about sums up my conclusions about Capra's conclusions. Nothing more than vague foreshadowing.

  • Rama
    2019-02-09 05:52

    The Brahman of physicsThis is one of the best books I have read which ties the philosophies of Vedanta (Hinduism), Buddhism and Taoism with the laws of physics. The book is divided into three sections; the first section gives a general introduction to the facts of physical reality. The second section discusses the philosophies of Hinduism with references to Bhagavad-Gita and Upanishads; Buddhist philosophy and Chinese thought. The last section discusses the laws of Newtonian physics, and how the reality experienced through classical principles has changed after the discovery of relativistic and quantum physics. The concepts of physics discussed in this section require some undergraduate level physics. The summary of this book is given below: In relativity, space and time are intimately connected and form a four dimensional continuum; hence they can not be treated separately. There is no universal time flow as in Newtonian dynamics. This means that different observers order events differently in time if they move with different velocities relative to the observed events. In such a case two events which are seen as occurring simultaneously by one observer may occur in different temporal sequences for other observers. All measurements involving space and time thus lose their absolute significance. The absolute space, which is a stage for physical event in Newtonian physics, is abandoned along with the concept of absolute time. Spacetime becomes an element of a language that a particular observer uses for describing a physical event. Relativistic physics also treats gravity as a manifestation of matter curving spacetime in its vicinity, and it also showed that mass is a form of energy and hence it can not be viewed as a static object but a dynamic existence. This mass - energy conversions are well demonstrated in particle - antiparticle interactions; energy turns into this pair and when they annihilate they are converted into pure energy. Since the spacetime is of four-dimensional, and in this dimension all events are interconnected. Particle interactions are interpreted as cause and effect only when space-time diagrams are read in one direction. There is no definite direction in the 4D world and hence no before or after and no causation. The wave - particle duality of matter at subatomic level does not mean that the wave is three-dimensional waves like water waves but they are probability waves. They are abstract mathematical quantities which are related to the probabilities of finding the particles in various places. In the absence of certainty, the existence of matter or its non-existence becomes diffused. We can never say that fundamental particles exist or they don't exist or it is neither present nor absent, or it exists and do not exist simultaneously until a physical observation is made. For better understanding of the relationship between pairs of classical concepts, Bohr introduced the notion of complementarity. He suggested that the particle picture and wave pictures are two complementary descriptions of the same reality. Each of them only partly correct and having a limited range of application. Each picture is needed to give the full descriptions of the atomic reality and both are to be applied within the limitations of uncertainty principle. The cosmic web is alive; it grows and changes continually according to the laws of physics. The wave - particle dualism of quantum physics, motions doesn't have paths, existence is reduced to probabilities, and the unification of space and time in relativistic physics implies a highly dynamic interaction with matter wherein all fundamental concepts of reality is interwoven into one reality. The particles are represented by wave packet, and the length of wave packet represents the uncertainty in location. If we localize the particle to a smaller region (length), then the wavelengths will decreases (frequency increases) representing an increase in the velocity and hence the momentum, thus supporting the dynamic nature of reality at its most fundamental level. The dynamic nature is also found at the intergalactic level where the existence of dark matter and dark forces keep the universe in its ever expansionary state. The universe at its edge is moving from us close to the speed of light and farther the cosmic bodies are faster they are moving from us. The laws of atomic physics are statistical laws according to which the probabilities for atomic events are determined by the dynamics of the whole system. Whereas in classical physics the properties and behavior of parts determine those of the whole. In quantum physics this is reversed, the whole determines the behavior of parts. Probability is used in both classical and quantum physics for similar reasons. In both there are hidden variables that prevent us from making exact predictions. The hidden variables in classical physics are local mechanisms and those in quantum physics are non-local. The latter allows instantaneous connection to a pair of entangled particles anywhere in the universe that would otherwise be precluded by the speed limit of light in classical physics. The structure we observe is a manifestation of an underlying process and matter is a form of energy and not mere stuff or substance. Energy is associated with process. In quantum physic the observer and observed no longer remain separated. Deductive philosophy implied that we need to start with fundamental laws that make the basis of knowledge. The fundamental equations, universal constants, basic concepts are the essential ingredients of building knowledge. Research and experimental evidence in support of a phenomenon and a mathematical model to explain the results is fundamental in science. Thus physics is mainly concerned with rational knowledge and the Vedic mysticism is concerned with intuitive knowledge. In the former as one explores the physics of fundamental particles, and the various physical processes in the atomic world it becomes increasingly clear that matter and energy in spacetime are all interconnected, interrelated, and interdependent, and they are understood as a part of the whole. Indian philosophy and Taoism had profound effect on three great quantum physicists; Erwin Schrödinger (expressed strong belief in Vedanta), Werner Heisenberg (expressed strong belief in Buddhist philosophy) and Niels Bohr (expressed strong belief Taoism).

  • Arun Divakar
    2019-02-14 09:53

    My feeling post the completion of this book is utter confusion. The first few chapters of this book gave an eloquent preamble of things to come, a sweeping narrative that would capture the essence of Physics and pit it against the ages-old wisdom of Eastern philosophy. This objective of the book was what caught my attention – that the author sets out to prove that an exacting discipline like Physics can have parallels with religious experiences. How can the rigor of mathematics be paralleled by an experience like mysticism ? Fascinating premise isn't it ? Then I made the mistake of reading about this book and found that all that was built up in a grandiose fashion by Fritjof Capra had been ripped apart by men and women with sharper intellects a long time ago. The mindset I then settled into was akin to reading Erich Von Daniken – not believing a word of what I read and yet fascinated by the imagination of the author.The author is by no means a bad one and I would even venture a few more steps forward and call him a good one for the first two parts of the book. This is where he explains in very light prose as to what constitutes the basics of physics (classical and modern), a little bit on the relativity theory, quantum and atomic physics etc. In another section he does a bare bones observation on the various eastern belief systems – Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism and a touch of Zen. The section on Hinduism is woefully inadequate for all it has is the cosmic dance of Siva and a slight smirk at the erotic undercurrents of the Tantric systems. Buddhism gets a larger and better treatment and so does the basic ideas of Taoism. The part on Zen is more of an icing on the cake than anything else. It is from here that things get stale, the author flies off to his own pet parallels and offers fantastic theories. For want of a better analogy, Capra pulls of a passably good Malcolm Gladwell – seemingly brilliant theories, fantastic examples and yet no chances to refute them in the examples that he quotes. Unlike Gladwell, the observations do not stick together too well with time. Take a moment to sit back, and re-look at them and they all fall away. Nothing more to be said of that. I don’t suppose this is a book I want to recommend to anyone. A quick twenty minutes reading online about the book will give you more understanding than what the book itself will. The two stars are for the skill of the author at stitching this all together. ‘Nuff said !

  • Cassandra Kay Silva
    2019-01-18 11:54

    Hmmm what to say about this. In some ways I agree that there are a number of parallels at least in the modality of viewing the world through the eyes of the eastern believer and the modern day physicist. But whether or not these parallels are entirely the ones drawn by the author or further expounded on in this book I have some reservations in either regard. Perhaps it was because I did not enjoy being told by the author where these parallels were or being lead around in such a manner. Some of his views of physics seem to be very "outsidist" if there is such a term and some of his views of eastern belief seem to be a bit mixed up. Perhaps because he chose all of eastern philosophy which is so wide ranging and so varied instead of focusing on Taoism or Buddhism for example. Though I do think that there are a lot of similarities in different eastern traditions and ways of thought I don't know if it strengthens the authors case to be flitting about between different philosophies in some cases which contradict each other, when there is often left to be much in terms of personal interpretation of these individual philosophies. I think what the author is trying to get at is the overall perspective of modern day physics is somehow aligning with what is already "known" in eastern religions. I don't know if that is an important or productive view of the whole matter. I mean what did these religions give us in terms of scientific understanding? And what does science give us in way of spiritual awareness of knowledge? Are these two expected to be married to a happy union? You cannot in my mind marry two ideals that serve different functions. I don't think I would pick this book up as a scientist and say I am now enlightened and turn to the eastern path. Nor do I think that as a believer in any of these eastern paths would I find more grounds for the validity of modern physics. They serve different functions. The parallels drawn did not in my mind make any relation here more concrete.

  • Ken Deshaies
    2019-02-10 07:17

    This is a very interesting treatise on how physics is just catching up with Eastern religions. The more scientists discover about the working of the universe, from the tiniest particles to the most universal truths, the more Eastern mysticism and preachings are substantiated as true. Yet Taoism, Hinduism, Buddhism have been preaching these truths for thousands of years. I was totally fascinated and engrossed. The first few chapters each give a brief overview of the different Eastern religions (philosophies). It helped me understand the differences, when in the past, I tended to lump them all together. The latter part of the book delves into scientific tests, discoveries and the meaning of various things like particle theory. The author wisely warns that the reader will be reading a lot of technical material, and suggests that, unless you are a student of physics or genuinely interested in the details, to simply read as a sort of meditation. He offers that if you take this approach, you will understand a lot more than you would anticipate. I found this to be true, and the reading was enlightening and enjoyable. It's also interesting to know that this book was published in the mid-70s, and so much more has been discovered since then.

  • Andrew Breslin
    2019-01-24 09:19

    I read this book back when I was a teenage nerd and I think it had a great deal of influence on me, shaping my character and making me what I am today: a middle-aged nerd.This was one of my earliest exposures to both modern physics and ancient mysticism, and from what I have observed, whatever source first introduces one to these ideas is always held in special esteem. Though highly recommended by others, I didn't enjoy The Dancing Wu-Li Masters, nor the film What theDo We Know nearly as much(A review of the latter is available here: )I frequently find this book at yard sales and used book stores, and I buy it up every time, so that I can give it away to other people. Because I truly think everyone should read it. I think if they grasped some of the ideas presented here, that the world would be a better place. You might think that I am a naive fool, and I'm okay with that. I'll just be sitting here, meditating, holding mutually exclusive thoughts in my head at the same time.

  • Lage von Dissen
    2019-02-02 06:01

    This book points out many of the parallels between modern physics and Eastern mysticism. In particular we can recognize parallels between many ancient mystic ideas and the modern quantum physical findings of superposition (and non locality), the duality of light and matter, and the ultimate non-physicality of nature. For many years there have been cultures that ascribed to these types of ideas as crazy as they sounded when they first hit the physics arena in the 20th century. These ideas weren't really new at all because mystics and the like had believed them for centuries prior. What was not discovered until this last century was the mathematics and scientific evidence to give these ancient mystic religions and precepts any foundation to be taken seriously, especially since most of society had largely given up on that mysticism for ideas such as atomism, newtonian mechanics, etc. This book does a good job pointing out these parallels and thus demonstrates how the pendulum has swung away from those ancient ideas, and has now begun to swing back.

  • Sebastian
    2019-02-03 08:08

    This is a great book at showing the parallels between mystical and scientific research.It also does a great job of stimulating visual imagination in the realm of the 4th dimension. This is the first book I have read that has managed to really explain the paradox of quantum-reality more clearly and I can now finally how the paradox of time and location are fundamental issues relating to the fabric of particles rather than with measuring techniques. It also gives a very good visual description of the impact preparation and thus observer plays on results and how nothing you can do can stop you from influencing the particle because of your intention to measure itThe book would have gotten 5-stars but it went too deep for too long near the end w/o further description of the meaning and purpose of such depth. Fritov Capra does this in his other books once in a while too; but in general Fritov is an excellent writer with a very clear and good voice to follow.Excellent book.

  • Dharmabum
    2019-02-15 12:06

    Given the kind of education a lot of us have had in India, and also that many of us I am acquainted with come from families and the immediate surroundings where religion, and to some extent spirituality do play a prominent role, a certain tension between the two ways of thinking - rational, objective & intuitive / spiritual, subjective - has always existed in my mind.This book made this tension explicit, but also attempted a synthesis. Though he claims the book to be meant for the lay person, Capra does offer a very thorough account of what physicists have to say about our theories of the universe, space & time. Alongside, he brings out the parallels between physics and Eastern spiritual traditions.While some parts were no doubt dense for me, overall, I was thrilled to read this book primarily because it made some complex physics somewhat accessible for me.

  • Kangarucci
    2019-01-21 10:01

    Mystics have always known that the one is the whole. Quantum physics came to the same conclusion by a very different route. Does that mean that the one spoken about by mystics is the same one spoken about by physicists. Are the respective wholes one and the same? If you're inclined to think that only science give access to truth, you'll probably answer no to the foregoing questions. If you are inclined to believe that nothing is as it seems and keep an open mind about things science cannot say anything about, you will very likely find the extended metaphor that runs through this book breathtakingly beautiful. Either way, read with an open mind. This book is wonder full!

  • Alan
    2019-02-05 09:57

    This is a phenomenal book.I have little formal education in physics, having passed 101 in college and never looked back, and still Dr. Capra managed to present a lot of the theoretical physics that pertained to his thesis in a digestible format. His overview of the various Eastern religions was matter-of-fact without taking anything away from them.If you feel as though the pursuit of reason to the exclusion of cultivating intuition isn't healthy, or if you have a nagging feeling like Western science isn't complete, this book may inspire you. With an open mind you would be amazed at what flashes of insight you might have.

  • Ashok Krishna
    2019-02-17 10:55

    Finishing this makes my brain feel like it just emerged out of a mental marathon!

  • Magdelanye
    2019-02-10 11:19

    This may be the most difficult book I ever read and it took me months. I acknowledge that it was amazing, but even slowly I often could not follow his logic and at the end I did not feel enlightened.