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David Bohm
David Bohm (1917-94) was one of the foremost theoretical physicists of his eneration and one of
the most infl!ential theorists of the emerin paradim thro!h which the world is increasinly
viewed" Bohm#s challene to the conventional !nderstandin of $!ant!m theory has led scientists
to re-e%amine what it is they are doin and to $!estion the nat!re of their theories and their
scientific methodoloy" &e 'ro!ht toether a radical view of physics( a deeply spirit!al
!nderstandin and a profo!nd h!manity" )n the years 'efore his death in 199*( Bohm lect!red
worldwide on the meanin of physics and conscio!sness"
)n an interview in 19+9 at the ,ils Bohr )nstit!te in -openhaen( where Bohm presented his
views( Bohm spo.e on his theory of wholeness and the implicate order" The conversation
centered aro!nd a new worldview that is developin in part of the Western world( one that places
more foc!s on wholeness and process than analysis of separate parts" Bohm e%plained the
'asics of the theory of relativity and its more revol!tionary offsprin( $!ant!m theory" /ither
theory( if carried o!t to its e%treme( violates every concept on which we 'ase o!r !nderstandin of
reality" Both challene o!r notions of o!r world and o!rselves"
&e cited evidence from 'oth theories that s!pport a new paradim of a more interrelated( fl!id(
and less a'sol!te 'asis of e%istence( one in which mind is an active participant" 0)nformation
contri'!tes f!ndamentally to the $!alities of s!'stance"0 &e disc!ssed forms( fields(
s!percond!ctivity( wave f!nction and electron 'ehavior" 0Wave f!nction( which operates thro!h
form( is closer to life and mind"""The electron has a mindli.e $!ality"0
)n his ro!nd'rea.in theory of 0wholeness and the implicate order0( Bohm proposed a new
model of reality that was a revol!tionary challene to physics" )n this model( as in a holoram(
any element contains enfolded within itself the totality of its !niverse" Bohm#s concept of totality
incl!ded 'oth matter and mind"
Bohm also mentioned the daners we face as a society and the chanes we will have to ma.e in
o!r thin.in in order to have a f!t!re" &e said we need a more holistic approach to the ecoloical
pro'lem and m!st find somethin else in life 'esides economic rowth1 if it contin!es !nchec.ed(
it will destroy the planet"The emerin chane in conscio!sness is the challene and the .ey2
03!r f!t!re depends on whether we feel li.e part of this one whole or whether we feel we#re
separate"0


Mystic 4ire 3nline
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David Bohm was one of the world#s reatest $!ant!m mechanical physicists and philosophers
and was deeply infl!enced 'y 'oth 5" 6rishnam!rti and /instein"
Born in Wiles-Barre( 7ennsylvania on Decem'er *8( 1917( he st!died !nder /instein and
3ppenheimer( received his B"9c" deree from 7ennsylvania 9tate -ollee in 19:9 and his 7h"D"
in physics at the ;niversity of -alifornia( Ber.eley( in 194:" &e was the last rad!ate st!dent to
st!dy with 3ppenheimer at ;"-" in the 1948s( where he remained as a research physicist after
3ppenheimer left for <os =lamos to wor. on the atomic 'om'" &e wor.ed at Ber.eley on the
Theory of 7lasma and on the Theory of 9ynchroton and 9yndrocyclotrons !ntil 1947" 4rom 1947-
19>1 he ta!ht at 7rinceton ;niversity as an =ssistant 7rofessor and wor.ed on 7lasmas( Theory
of Metals( ?!ant!m Mechanics and /lementary 7articles"
&e was 'lac.listed 'y 9enator 5oe Mc-arthy#s witch-h!nt trials while teachin at 7rinceton"
@ather than testifyin aainst his collea!es( he left the ;"9" Bohm s!'se$!ently 'ecame
7rofessor at the ;niversity of 9ao 7a!lo( BraAil( the Technion of &aifa( )srael( and at Bir.'ec.
-ollee( ;niversity of <ondon1 @esearch 4ellow at Bristol ;niversity1 and was elected 4ellow of
the @oyal 9ociety in 1998" Bohm lived in <ondon and died in 199*"
Bohm was a mem'er of the @oyal =cademy( the oriinator of the ca!sal interpretation of $!ant!m
theory( and the a!thor of a famo!s te%t on $!ant!m mechanics and of n!mero!s articles and
other 'oo.s" The 'est-.nown recent wor. was Wholeness and the )mplicate 3rder" &e wrote his
classic 'oo.( ?!ant!m Theory( in an attempt to !nderstand $!ant!m theory from ,ils Bohr#s point
of view" =fter completin the 'oo. and comm!nicatin with /instein on it( Bohm remained
!nsatisfied with the theory" Bohm#s challene to the conventional !nderstandin of $!ant!m
theory has led scientists to re-e%amine what it is they are doin and to $!estion the nat!re of their
theories and their scientific methodoloy"
= profo!ndly contemplative man( Bohm arrived int!itively at !niversal tr!ths and presented them
in imainative models( in the lan!aes of 'oth physics and philosophy" &is physics and
cosmoloy were all-encompassin and so far ahead of his time that few people were a'le to
appreciate them" Mainstream physicists considered them too mystical( and few mystics co!ld
follow his s!'tle scientific reasonin" (6rishnam!rti was a nota'le e%ception")
Bohm redefined physics" To him it was not a'o!t mere prediction and control( nor even
mathematical e$!ations" Tho!h central to the enterprise( they are not its essence" 7hysics is
a'o!t nat!re and o!r !nderstandin of nat!re" 4or Bohm( its meanin and its messae were
creativity( the sinat!re of an infinite !niverse" &e saw it an !ndivided wholeness enfolded into an
infinite 'ac.ro!nd so!rce that !nfolds into the visi'le( material( and temporal world of o!r
everyday lives" &e said that tho!ht can rasp the !nfolded( '!t only somethin 'eyond tho!ht -
int!ition( !nmediated insiht( intellience - can /B7/@)/,-/ the enfolded" =t some point deep
within the implicate order( tho!ht and lan!ae fail !s and only sacred silence can reveal tr!th"
That silence is the lan!ae of the whole( the !niverse e%pressin itself thro!h !s in a life of
interity rather than framentation"
Bohm envisioned a transformation for those who rasped $!ant!m mechanics in depth2a world of
interconnection and interdependence( of direct and instantaneo!s comm!nication( in which we
have learned to harness the eneries of compassion" Civin voice to the marvelo!s possi'ilities
of a new f!t!re( he was himself an e%ample of his ideas" Many who .new him tho!ht of him as a
sort of 0sec!lar saint"0 &e had a visionary $!ality that drew others to him and inspired them" &e
was transported 'y the clarity of his vision and eneriAed 'y it to s!ch a point that he swept his
listeners with him into the or'it of the possi'le" &e 'elieved in a world that was meaninf!l( clear(
intellient andspirit!al( where the implicate order is e%pressed as a livin force in o!r e%plicate
lives"
9/</-T/D 7;B<)-=T)3,92
0?!ant!m Theory(0 ,ew Dor.( 19>1
0-a!sality and -hane in Modern 7hysics(0 <ondon( 19>7
0The 9pecial Theory of @elativity(0 ,ew Dor. 19EE
0Wholeness and the )mplicate 3rder(0 <ondon( 19+8
0;nfoldin Meanin(0 (record of a dialo!e with David Bohm)( <ondon( 19+>
09cience( 3rder and -reativity(0 ,ew Dor.( 19+7
0Tho!ht as a 9ystem(0 <ondon( 1994
9ee also 0The /neries of <ove2 )n &onor of David Bohm(0 an article 'y @enee We'er in The
?!est( =!t!mn( 199:"
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