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One Book that Changed my Life

There are a few moments that occur in our life that we know are special. They change us fundamentally. The way we think about ourselves or how we think about the world.

  • One was learning about Buddhism.
  • One was reading a Brief History of Time
  • One was the Mars Rover landing on Mars
  • One was reading the Tao of Physics
  • One was watching Numberphile

All these events are seamless as I think about my developing psyche. I always fall apart while watching the Theory of Everything. I always start crying when Eddie Redmayne says, “It is a kind of religion for intelligent atheists.” These are not tears of sorrow, though I do miss Stephen Hawking, it was that moment where I felt seen.

There are good reasons to cry. I mean, the only form of time travel comes to use through Astronomy. We have discovered the background radiation from the big bang. It is incredible what we have achieved!

What I find surprising are the parallels between Buddhism and quantum mechanics. This was clear to me early on. Especially learning bout the uncertainty principle. Reality, after all, is an illusion.

Understanding Perceptions and Objectivity

I tried to put fort an argument on this blog concerning what we perceive and what is objective. The thing is, we have never seen the world as it exists. We receive information through our primary senses and then our mind interprets that information. We know that our emotions can impact what information we take away from it.

This is a fundamental issue in math anxiety. The fear impacts working memory which makes completing math problems harder. It has nothing to do with ability although the person might misinterpret this as a failure.

I am taking a course next semester in Epistemology. I did so for one reason. Empiricism is the basis for science! That comes out of philosophy regarding knowledge.

The Tao of Physics

I am pretty sure this is one of the books that I picked up from the Psychic Eye Store in San Diego. My mother is very into New Age stuff and would take me when she went shopping. As I’ve stated before, my family never censored anything that I read. I was exposed to lots of different points of view.

The Tao of Physics stood out to me because of the way it tried to draw conclusions from quantum mechanics related to eastern thought. At this stage, I was a practicing Buddhist so a book combining my interest in physics with the philosophy I was following was life-altering.

Of course, it is still a little hookey. You can only take these arguments so far and it might be a little frou-frou for people. But it is something to consider if you are interested in these types of connections. Just know it may be out of date with modern thought as the original book was published in the 70s.

It is okay just to think and speculate on things even if they aren’t perfectly true. There are many theories in our time that were good that fell apart later. It still gives us a platform for how to think about problems in science. You can decide for yourself if the argument is good.