137: Jung, Pauli, and the Pursuit of a Scientific Obsession

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9780393338645: 137: Jung, Pauli, and the Pursuit of a Scientific Obsession
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“The history is fascinating, as are the insights into the personalities of these great thinkers.”―New Scientist

Is there a number at the root of the universe? A primal number that everything in the world hinges on? This question exercised many great minds of the twentieth century, among them the groundbreaking physicist Wolfgang Pauli and the famous psychoanalyst Carl Jung. Their obsession with the power of certain numbers―including 137, which describes the atom’s fine-structure constant and has great Kabbalistic significance―led them to develop an unlikely friendship and to embark on a joint mystical quest reaching deep into medieval alchemy, dream interpretation, and the Chinese Book of Changes. 137 explores the profound intersection of modern science with the occult, but above all it is the tale of an extraordinary, fruitful friendship between two of the greatest thinkers of our times. Originally published in hardcover as Deciphering the Cosmic Number. 66 b/w illustrations

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About the Author:

Arthur I. Miller is a professor emeritus at University College London. He has published many critically acclaimed books, including Einstein, Picasso; Empire of the Stars; and 137. He lives in London.

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The heart of this book lies not in the promised decipherment of the title but in Miller’s excellent dual biography of two men who changed their fields. Physicist Pauli was a brilliant but unhappy womanizer when his life’s disturbances led him to consult with Jung, famous for connecting psychology with spirituality. The relationship was a fruitful one on both sides, with Pauli making peace with his unsettled soul and continuing his groundbreaking theorizing, while Jung gained understanding of principles of contemporary physics that led, albeit circuitously, to his articulation of the idea of synchronicity, which he felt was one of his most important contributions. A series of Pauli’s vivid dreams, together with Jung’s analysis of them, forms an unexpectedly rich centerpiece of the book. And the cosmic number? A bit of bait-and-switch, that, as it is only briefly mentioned. But a worthy book, nonetheless.

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9780393065329: Deciphering the Cosmic Number: The Strange Friendship of Wolfgang Pauli and Carl Jung

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Book Description WW Norton Co, United States, 2010. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Is there a number at the root of the universe? A primal number that everything in the world hinges on? This question exercised many great minds of the twentieth century, among them the groundbreaking physicist Wolfgang Pauli and the famous psychoanalyst Carl Jung. Their obsession with the power of certain numbers-including 137, which describes the atom s fine-structure constant and has great Kabbalistic significance-led them to develop an unlikely friendship and to embark on a joint mystical quest reaching deep into medieval alchemy, dream interpretation, and the Chinese Book of Changes. 137 explores the profound intersection of modern science with the occult, but above all it is the tale of an extraordinary, fruitful friendship between two of the greatest thinkers of our times. Originally published in hardcover as Deciphering the Cosmic Number. Seller Inventory # AAS9780393338645

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