A historically illuminating account of an ancient but still relevant conception of the universe.

DUALITY OF TIME

COMPLEX-TIME GEOMETRY & PERPETUAL CREATION OF SPACE

A researcher offers a comprehensive presentation of an ancient Islamic theory of time that has implications for modern cosmology and physics. 

According to Haj Yousef (The Single Monad Model of the Cosmos, 2007), the medieval Islamic philosopher Ibn al-Arabi devised a cosmology that not only anticipates the emergence of modern quantum mechanics, but also provides solutions to its most vexing problems. At the heart of Ibn al-Arabi’s view of the universe is a dualistic conception of time. On the one hand, time is ontologically real if understood from the perspective of each moment. But the experience of time is always as a continuous volume—a perceptual distortion of the real world, an imaginary manifestation. The paradox of our observation of time is that we’re only ever encountering time as the past, the continual re-creation of each discrete moment ad infinitum. As a result, the world bifurcates into two states: a vacuum, the empty space that constitutes time in its reality, and the void, the phenomenal expression of time as we experience it. This division opens up the possibility of simultaneously existing dimensions, thereby creating the conditions for a monistic harmony of the psychical and the physical. Haj Yousef intends this volume as a sequel to his first book on Ibn Al-Arabi, expanded to be “more accessible to the wider scientific community.” This reworking includes an account of the history of cosmology, from ancient Sumerian and Babylonian versions to the present, and a thorough introduction to Islamic mysticism. The author’s command of the pertinent historical and theoretical material is breathtaking, with some of his conclusions peculiar but tantalizing. For example, he argues that ancient alchemy can actually be understood as a precursor to quantum mechanics, and that Ibn al-Arabi anticipates contemporary discussions of black holes. But Haj Yousef can sometimes enthusiastically overemphasize the explanatory power of Ibn al-Arabi’s cosmology. It surely seems like an overstatement to claim that “most, if not all, of the major fundamental problems of physics and cosmology are easily solved in this model.” Still, this remains a captivating study for those with a strong grasp of modern physics. 

A historically illuminating account of an ancient but still relevant conception of the universe. 

Pub Date: Dec. 25, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5395-7920-5

Page Count: 338

Publisher: CreateSpace

Review Posted Online: April 12, 2018

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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