THE REFLEXIVE UNIVERSE by Arthur M. Young

THE REFLEXIVE UNIVERSE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

More ambitious than The Geometry of Meaning, this is Young's attempt at a grand cosmology which he describes as a theory of process. It incorporates light as the first principle, makes use of quantum mechanics, builds in a theory of evolution in which man is set apart, and projects other, higher orders of being. Here Young reveals greater arbitrariness. The concept of ""sevenness,"" admittedly an intuition, he seeks to demonstrate as the natural order of things, designing new taxonomies of the inanimate and the animate. Further, he reveals a deep belief in forces beyond science--self-transcendency, materialization and dematerialization, for example. (In 1952 Young set up the Foundation for the Study of Consciousness in order to pool the thoughts of physicists, psychologists, astrologers, lamas). The consequences of building such a grand scheme are that almost any phenomenon can be fitted in: Planck's constant, Heisenberg's uncertainty, Darwinian evolution, the double helix, ESP, you name it. Logically such a scheme allows builtin contradictions, which logicians would not find very useful. But use may not be the operative term for Young who seeks a grand integration of science and non-science in the concept of action. Again it will be the rare reader who will follow the quantum mechanical explanations, and rarer still, those who follow and then permit their extensions and analogies in the construction of the system.

Pub Date: July 1st, 1976
Publisher: Delacorte