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New Paradigm: A Confrontation Between Physics and the Paranormal Phenomena
John O'M. Bockris, ISBN 0-9767444-0-6, $34.95 Paperback, 504 pp., D&M Enterprises
by William Zebuhr
long been realized that some of the old spiritual wisdom contained concepts that
science could not reconcile, but lately it has been
recognized that some of the theories of modern physics seem to point in the same
direction. The old wisdom was gained by intuition, visions, trances, and various
psychic means that are totally unexplained by science as we know it today. There
have been many attempts in the last fifteen years or so by scientists and others
to tie together the concepts of advanced physics and these ancient ideas put forth
by spiritual leaders. Most of these authors attempted to reconcile a few of these
concepts, usually revolving around the particular field of study they were engaged
in. This limits the scope and biases what is considered to be the real truth.
John Bockris, in his new book The New Paradigm: A Confrontation Between Physics
and the Paranormal Phenomena, has transcended these limitations and written
a book that covers far more scope without preconceived notions of what really
is going on in this amazing and still very mysterious universe. This is a presumptuous
and powerful title, but it lives up to it; the subtitle is a good description
of what the book addresses.
The beginning of the
book presents an excellent overview of current paradigm and how it came to be.
It concludes that science has become the religion of the West. This has
given us an unprecedented standard of material living, but left a lot of problems
and unanswered questions. The problems and some projected consequences are discussed
and then the problems with the current paradigm are addressed comprehensively.
This is where Bockris does a far better job than others, because he is willing
and able to attack the current science from all angles. Readers of IE will
recognize a lot of this and both IE and Gene Mallove are sited as references.
chapter is devoted to phenomena that are difficult or impossible to explain with
current science. Some of these phenomena are things like homeopathy and crop circles,
which most scientists reject out of hand, but this is a well-researched book with
many references and it is hard to simply say that these things are the figment
of overactive imaginations or hoaxes, etc. In any case, there are plenty of things
out there that current science is clueless about.
also explains from personal experience what it is like to work outside of the
current paradigm. When he was a Distinguished Professor at Texas A&M University
he did some pioneering work in cold fusion and fought the establishment hard.
making a solid argument that there are some serious holes in current sciencethe
religion of the WestBockris devotes over one-third of the book to detailed
descriptions of a wide variety of psychic phenomena. This is to further show that
current science leaves many things unexplained, but also to show that ideas that
have historically fallen into the category of religion should now be included
in any study that tries to describe the real universe. These are not ideas that
describe what is taught in any particular religion, but are ideas that fall under
a more encompassing idea of a spiritual existence. It could be said that these
phenomena are considered spiritual simply because they can't now be explained
by science. Advanced technology can look magical and science that is not understood
can look spiritual. That doesn't mean that what are thought of as spiritual beings
don't exist; it means that science and our normal five senses don't perceive them.
There is plenty of evidence that they do exist and plenty of people that can sense
them, but not in ways that satisfy conventional science.
last chapter sums the conclusions from the previous chapters and describes the
new paradigm. Bockris concludes that, "Present science is incomplete, and
able to retain its position largely by suppressing by ridicule fields of knowledge
which are inconsistent with its fundamental concepts, often presented as though
they were final, certain, and ubiquitous." He concludes that other concepts
such as the paranormal, theories about consciousness, and interconnectedness must
be integrated into science to give us a much better understanding of the true
nature of reality.
I completely agree with Bockris'
overall conclusions, though not with some of the political solutions to particular
issues. This is a very valuable book that could only have been written by a person
with excellent credentials and a lot of real world experience. There is a lot
of information here that has been chosen and assembled with a mature judgment
and interjected with strong personal experiences that give the material a credibility
that is missing in other attempts to make the same kind of arguments. In spite
of some faults (namely, small editorial errors, some poor layout, and repetition
which could have been removed to shorten the book a bit), this is by far the best
book I have read on this general subject and I strongly recommend it to anyone
who is serious about learning more about the principles that guide this mysterious