SELECTED QUOTES

Dancers VI       1995           39" x 60"           mixed media on papered panel

 

 

 

   I.    QUOTES by PHYSICISTS            page 1

 

 

  II.  OTHER SELECTED QUOTES      pages 2-5 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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QUOTES by PHYSICISTS

 

(Alphabetical)

 

 

 

 

David Bohm

 

 

“Space is not empty. It is full, a plenum as opposed to a vacuum, and is the ground for the existence of everything, including ourselves. The universe is not separate from this cosmic sea of energy.”         

 

“Rather, what should be said is that wholeness is what is real, and that fragmentation is the response of this whole to man’s action, guided by illusory perception, which is shaped by fragmentary thought.”  

 

“The notion of a separate organism is clearly an abstraction, as is also its boundary. Underlying all this is unbroken wholeness even though our civilization has developed in such a way as to strongly emphasize the separation into parts.”

 

 

 

 

Niels Bohr

 

 

“Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real.”           

 

“In the great drama of existence we are audience and actors at the same time.”      

 

“A physicist visits a colleague and notices a horseshoe hanging on the wall above the entrance. 'Do you really believe that a horseshoe brings luck?' he asks. 'No,' replies the colleague, 'but I've been told that it works even if you don't believe in it.'”                                                                        

 

“In our description of nature the purpose is not to disclose the real essence of the phenomena but only to track down, so far as it is possible, relations between the manifold aspects of our experience.” 

 

 

 

Max Born

 

 

“I have tried to read philosophers of all ages and have found many illuminating ideas but no steady progress toward deeper knowledge and understanding. Science, however, gives me the feeling of steady progress: I am convinced that theoretical physics is actual philosophy. It has revolutionized fundamental concepts, e.g., about space and time (relativity), about causality (quantum theory), and about substance and matter (atomistics), and it has taught us new methods of thinking (complementarity) which are applicable far beyond physics.”  

 

 

 

 

Louis de Broglie

 

 

 “Two seemingly incompatible conceptions can each represent an aspect of the truth... They may serve in turn to represent the facts without ever entering into direct conflict.”  

 

“In space-time everything which for each of us constitutes the past, the present and the future is given en bloc...Each observer, as his time passes, discovers, so to speak, new slices of space-time which appear to him as successive aspects of the material world, though in reality the ensemble of events constituting space-time exist prior to his knowledge of them.”                                                             

 

 

 

Fritjof Capra

 

 

“Quantum theory has abolished the notion of fundamentally separated objects, has introduced the concept of the participator to replace that of the observer, and may even find it necessary to include the human consciousness in its description of the world. It has come to see the universe as an interconnected web of physical and mental relationships whose parts are only defined through the connections to the whole.”         

 

“Whenever we expand the realm of our experience, the limitations of our rational mind become apparent and we have to modify, or even abandon, some of our concepts.” 

 

 

 

 

Maire Curie   (1867 - 1934)

 

 

“Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood.  Now is the time
to understand more, so that we may fear less.”                   

 

 

 

 

Paul Dirac

 

 

“If you are receptive and humble, mathematics will lead you by the hand. Again and again, when I have been at a loss how to proceed, I have just had to wait until I have felt the mathematics led me by the hand. It has led me along an unexpected path, a path where new vistas open up, a path leading to new territory, where one can set up a base of operations, from which one can survey the surroundings and plan future progress.” 

 

 

 

 

 

Freeman Dyson

 

 

“Scientifically speaking, a butterfly is at least as mysterious as a superstring. When something ceases to be mysterious it ceases to be of absorbing concern to scientists. Almost all the things scientists think and dream about are mysterious.”                                                                      

 

“Wheeler says, ‘Of all strange features of the universe, none are stranger than these: time is transcended, laws are mutable, and observer-participancy matters.’ According to Wheeler, the laws of physics evolve progressively in such a way as to make the universe observable.”                      

 

“Whether the details of my calculations turn out to be correct or not, there are good scientific reasons for taking seriously the possibility that life and intelligence can succeed in molding this universe of ours to their own purposes.”                                                                                              

 

“To me the most astounding fact in the universe, even more astounding than the flight of the Monarch butterfly, is the power of mind which drives my fingers as I write these words. Somehow, by natural processes still totally mysterious, a million butterfly brains working together in a human skull have the power to dream, to calculate, to see and to hear, to speak and to listen, to translate thought and feelings into marks on paper which other brains can interpret. Mind, through the long course of biological evolution, has established itself as moving force in our little corner of the universe. Here on this small planet, mind has infiltrated matter and has taken control. It appears to me that the tendency of mind to infiltrate and control matter is a law of nature.”    

 

 

 

Albert Einstein

 

 

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. Imagination is the language of the soul. Pay attention to your imagination and you will discover all you need to be fulfilled.”     

 

“Don't wait for miracles, your whole life is a miracle.”                       

 

“The supreme task of the physicist is to arrive at those universal elementary laws from which the cosmos can be built up by pure deduction. There is no logical path to these laws; only intuition, resting on sympathetic understanding of experience, can reach them.”                                      

 

“People like you and I, though mortal of course, do not grow old no matter how long we live. What I mean is that we never cease to stand like curious children before the great Mystery into which we were born.”        

 

“All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man’s life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom.”

 

"The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of true art and true science.” Whoever does not know it and can no longer wonder, no longer marvel, is as good as dead, and his eyes are dimmed."                          

 

“What we have called matter is energy, whose vibration has been so lowered as to be perceptible to the senses. There is no matter.”  

 

“A human being is a part of the whole, called by us ‘Universe,’ a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest—a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. The striving to free oneself from this delusion is the one issue of true religion. Not to nourish it but to try to overcome it is the way to reach the attainable measure of peace of mind.”     

 

“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”                                                                                                   

 

“Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”           

 

“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existence. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery each day.”      

 

“It gave me great pleasure to tell you about the mysteries with which physics confronts us. As a human being, one has been endowed with just enough intelligence to be able to see clearly how utterly inadequate that intelligence is when confronted with what exists. If such humility could be conveyed to everybody, the world of human activities would be more appealing.”                                                     

“The true value of a human being is determined primarily by the measure and the sense in which he has attained liberation from the self”                                                                                  

 

“That deep emotional conviction of the presence of a superior reasoning power, which is revealed in the incomprehensible universe, forms my idea of God.”       

 

"Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom." 

 

"The pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives."

 

 

 

 

Michael Faraday  (1791 - 1867)

 

 

“Nothing is too wonderful to be true.”   

                                   

 

 

 

 

Richard P. Feynman

 

 

“You can always recognize truth by its beauty and simplicity.”  

 

“To those who do not know mathematics it is difficult to get across a real feeling as to the beauty, the deepest beauty, of nature ... If you want to learn about nature, to appreciate nature, it is necessary to understand the language that she speaks in.”                                            

 

“I learned very early the difference between knowing the name of something and knowing something.”

 

“The internal machinery of life, the chemistry of the parts, is something beautiful. And it turns out that all life is interconnected with all other life.”                                                  

 

“I wanted very much to learn to draw, for a reason that I kept to myself: I wanted to convey an emotion I have about the beauty of the world.”                  

 

“Our poets do not write about it; our artists do not try to portray this remarkable thing. I don't know why. Is nobody inspired by our present picture of the universe? The value of science remains unsung by singers... This is not yet a scientific age.”       

 

“If you realize all the time what's kind of wonderful - that is, if we expand our experience into wilder and wilder regions of experience - every once in a while, we have these integrations when everything's pulled together into a unification, in which it turns out to be simpler than it looked before.”  

 

“Do not read so much, look about you and think of what you see there.”   

 

“I don’t know anything, but I do know that everything is interesting if you go into it deeply enough.”                                                                                                                                                 

 

“Our imagination is stretched to the utmost not, as in fiction, to imagine things which are not really there, but just to comprehend those things which are there.”                 

 

"I think that when we know that we actually do live in uncertainty, then we ought to admit it; it is of great value to realize that we do not know the answers to different questions. This attitude of mind—this attitude of uncertainty—is vital to the scientist, and it is this attitude of mind which the student must first acquire."

 

“I have a friend who's an artist and has sometimes taken a view which I don't agree with very well. He'll hold up a flower and say ‘look how beautiful it is,’ and I'll agree. Then he says ‘I as an artist can see how beautiful this is but you as a scientist take this all apart and it becomes a dull thing,’ and I think that he's kind of nutty. First of all, the beauty that he sees is available to other people and to me too, I believe. Although I may not be quite as refined aesthetically as he is ... I can appreciate the beauty of a flower. At the same time, I see much more about the flower than he sees. I could imagine the cells in there, the complicated actions inside, which also have a beauty. I mean it's not just beauty at this dimension, at one centimeter; there's also beauty at smaller dimensions, the inner structure, also the processes. The fact that the colors in the flower evolved in order to attract insects to pollinate it is interesting; it means that insects can see the color. It adds a question: does this aesthetic sense also exist in the lower forms? Why is it aesthetic? All kinds of interesting questions which the science knowledge only adds to the excitement, the mystery and the awe of a flower. It only adds. I don't understand how it subtracts.”                                               

 

                           

 

Brian Greene

 

 

“Relativity challenges your basic intuitions that you've built up from everyday experience. It says your experience of time is not what you think it is, that time is malleable. Your experience of space is not what you think it is; it can stretch and shrink.”            

 

“I believe we owe our young an education that captures the exhilarating drama of science.”    

 

“Sometimes nature guards her secrets with the unbreakable grip of physical law. Sometimes the true nature of reality beckons from just beyond the horizon.”        

 

“We might be the holographic image of a two-dimensional structure.”

 

“The universe is incredibly wondrous, incredibly beautiful, and it fills me with a sense that there is some underlying explanation that we have yet to fully understand. If someone wants to place the word 'God' on those collections of words, it's OK with me.”        

 

“For me it's been very exciting to contribute to the public's understanding of how rich and wondrous science is.”                                        

 

“We are living through a remarkably privileged era, when certain deep truths about the cosmos are still within reach of the human spirit of exploration.”           

 

“One of the strangest features of string theory is that it requires more than the three spatial dimensions that we see directly in the world around us. That sounds like science fiction, but it is an indisputable outcome of the mathematics of string theory.”     

 

“The world of the everyday suddenly seemed nothing but an inverted magic act, lulling its audience into believing in the usual, familiar conceptions of space and time, while the astonishing truth of quantum reality lay carefully guarded by nature's sleights of hand.”

            The Fabric of the Cosmos: Space, Time, and the Texture of Reality

 

 

“Science is a way of life. Science is a perspective. Science is the process that takes us from confusion to understanding in a manner that's precise, predictive and reliable - a transformation, for those lucky enough to experience it, that is empowering and emotional.”                                

 

“String theory has the potential to show that all of the wondrous happenings in the universe - from the frantic dance of subatomic quarks to the stately waltz of orbiting binary stars; from the primordial fireball of the big bang to the majestic swirl of heavenly galaxies - are reflections of one, grand physical principle, one master equation.”   

 

“Science is the greatest of all adventure stories, one that's been unfolding for thousands of years as we have sought to understand ourselves and our surroundings.”           

 

 

 

 

Stephen Hawking

 

 

“Look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see, and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious.”   

 

“Holography encodes the information in a region of space onto a surface one dimension lower.”

 

 

 

 

Werner Heisenberg

 

 

“[T]he atoms or elementary particles themselves are not real; they form a world of potentialities or possibilities rather than one of things or facts.”       

 

“I think that modern physics has definitely decided in favor of Plato. In fact the smallest units of matter are not physical objects in the ordinary sense; they are forms, ideas which can be expressed unambiguously only in mathematical language.”   

 

“...separation of the observer from the phenomenon to be observed is no longer possible.” 

 

 

 

 

 

Michio Kaku

 

 

“In string theory, all particles are vibrations on a tiny rubber band; physics is the harmonies on the string; chemistry is the melodies we play on vibrating strings; the universe is a symphony of strings, and the 'Mind of God' is cosmic music resonating in 11-dimensional hyperspace.”    

 

“To me, it is clear that we exist in a plan which is governed by rules that were created, shaped by a universal intelligence and not by chance.”   

                                                      

 

 

 

 

Andrei Linde

 

 

“But in fact we are substituting the reality of our experience of the universe with the conceptually contained belief in an independently existent material world. Is it possible that consciousness like space/time has its own intrinsic degrees of freedom, and neglecting these, will lead to a description of the universe that is fundamentally incomplete. What if our perceptions are as real or maybe in a certain sense are even more real than material objects.”                                     

 

 

 

Wolfgang Pauli

 

 

“What really matters for me is ... the more active role of the observer in quantum physics ... According to quantum physics the observer has indeed a new relation to the physical events around him in comparison with the classical observer, who is merely a spectator.”      

 

“The layman always means, when he says "reality" that he is speaking of something self-evidently known; whereas to me it seems the most important and exceedingly difficult task of our time is to work on the construction of a new idea of reality.”  

 

“I confess, that very different from you, I do find sometimes scientific inspiration in mysticism ... but this is counterbalanced by an immediate sense for mathematics.”  

 

 

 

 

Max Planck

 

 

“In all my research I have never come across matter. To me the term matter implies a bundle of energy which is given form by an intelligent spirit.”                                          

 

“Modern physics has taught us that the nature of any system cannot be discovered by dividing it into its component parts and studying each part by itself... We must keep our attention fixed on the whole and on the interconnection between the parts. The same is true of our intellectual life. It is impossible to make a clear cut between science, religion, and art. The whole is never equal simply to the sum of its various parts.”

 

“Every advance in knowledge brings us face to face with the mystery of our own being.” 

 

“There can never be any real opposition between religion and science; for the one is the complement of the other. Every serious and reflective person realizes, I think, that the religious element in his nature must be recognized and cultivated if all the powers of the human soul are to act together in perfect balance and harmony. And indeed it was not by accident that the greatest thinkers of all ages were deeply religious souls.” 

 

“The scientist needs an artistically creative imagination.” 

 

“Both religion and natural science require a belief in God for their activities, to the former He is the starting point, and to the latter the goal of every thought process. To the former He is the foundation, to the latter, the crown of the edifice of every generalized world view.”                      

 

“I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness.” 

 

“As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clearheaded science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about the atoms this much: There is no matter as such! All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particles of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together. . . . We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent Mind. This Mind is the matrix of all matter.”

 

“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are a part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”     

 

“Science enhances the moral value of life, because it furthers a love of truth and reverence—love of truth displaying itself in the constant endeavor to arrive at a more exact knowledge of the world of mind and matter around us, and reverence, because every advance in knowledge brings us face to face with the mystery of our own being.”  

 

“Science…means unresting endeavor and continually progressing development toward an aim which the poetic intuition may apprehend, but the intellect can never fully grasp.”   

 

“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”

 

 

 

 

Jules-Henri Poincare

 

 

“The scientist does not study nature because it is useful; he studies it because he delights in it,

and he delights in it because it is beautiful.  If nature were not beautiful, it would not be worth

knowing, and if nature were not worth knowing, life would not be worth living.”

 

 

 

 

 

Karl R. Popper

 

 

“It is often asserted that, in view of the situation in quantum theory, object and subject can no longer be sharply separated. To use (Walter) Heitler’s words, the ‘separation of the world into an “objective outside reality”, and “us”, the self-conscious onlookers, can no longer be maintained. Object and subject become inseparable from each other’.”

 

 

 

 

Ernest Rutherford

 

 

“When we have found how the nucleus of atoms is built up we shall have found the greatest secret of all — except life. We shall have found the basis of everything — of the earth we walk on, of the air we breathe, of the sunshine, of our physical body itself, of everything in the world, however great or however small — except life.”                                                                                                                                                   

 

 

Carl Sagan

 

 

“The cosmos is within us. We are made of star-stuff. We are a way for the universe to know itself.”

 

 

 

Erwin Schrodinger

 

 

“The task is not to see what has never been seen before, but to think what has never been thought before about what you see everyday.”       

 

“Quantum physics thus reveals a basic oneness of the universe.”   

 

“Multiplicity is only apparent, in truth, there is only one mind.”      

 

“The total number of minds in the universe is one.”                       

 

“There is no kind of framework within which we can find consciousness in the plural; this is simply something we construct because of the temporal plurality of individuals, but it is a false construction.”

 

“We do not belong to this material world that science constructs for us. We are not in it; we are outside. We are only spectators. The reason why we believe that we are in it, that we belong to the picture, is that our bodies are in the picture. Our bodies belong to it. Not only my own body, but those of my friends, also of my dog and cat and horse, and of all the other people and animals. And this is my only means of communicating with them.” 

 

“Our perceiving self is nowhere to be found in the world-picture, because it itself is the world-picture.”                           

 

“For eternally and always there is only now, one and the same now; the present is the only thing that has no end.”

                                                        

“Every man's world picture is and always remains a construct of his mind and cannot be proved to have any other existence.”                                                         

 

“I know not whence I came, nor whither I go, nor who I am.”      

 

“Consciousness cannot be accounted for in physical terms. For consciousness is absolutely fundamental. It cannot be accounted for in terms of anything else.”                                              

 

”Consciousness is a singular for which there is no plural.”              

 

“This life of yours which you are living is not merely a piece of this entire existence, but in a certain sense the whole... Thus you can throw yourself flat on the ground, stretched out upon mother earth, with the certain conviction that you are one with her and she with you.”    

 

“The world is given to me only once, not one existing and one perceived. Subject and object are only one. The barrier between them cannot be said to have broken down as a result of recent experience in the physical sciences, for this barrier does not exist.”                                  

 

 

 

 

Edward P. Tryon

 

 

“In 1973 it occurred to me that relativity and quantum theory might imply the spontaneous creation of universes from nothing. If so, matter and energy would not be fundamental but manifestations of underlying laws. Ultimate reality would be the laws themselves—the mind of Einstein’s God.”                                                                                                                                                                                   

 

 

John Wheeler

 

 

“The Question is what is The Question?

Is it all a Magic Show?

Is Reality an Illusion?

What is the framework of The Machine?

Darwin’s Puzzle: Natural Selection?

Where does Space-Time come from?

Is there any answer except that it comes from consciousness?

What is Out There?

T’is Ourselves?

Or, is IT all just a Magic Show?”    

 

“In order to more fully understand this reality, we must take into account other dimensions of a broader reality.”                                                                                                                                                    

 

 

 

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