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New Sciences/ New Paradigms

9-16 April 3 and 2-9 October 2003

with Dr F. David Peatt

This week-long workshop will range over many of the issues discussed in David Peat's books, essays and on his web site. The aim is to explore the various ways in which the new paradigms and the new stories that are being told by science have an impact on our lives, society and values. Are we beginning to see the world in new ways? Is a new thinking emerging? How are the visions of the artist and the scientist related? Are we moving towards a new integration of knowledge? How is this changing the way we think about ourselves and our society?

The course will proceed via a combination of lectures and discussions. When scientific ideas are involved these will be explained and explored in a non-technical way. This course is therefore suitable for laypeople and anyone interested in the history and evolution of ideas. This course ran twice in 2001 and gave rise to many stimulating and productive discussions. For further information email

The course will be far ranging and will draw on some of the topics listed below - the actual choice made will reflect the particular interests of participants.

Paradigm Shifts
Changes in European society and consciousness from the Early Middle Ages to the present day.
13th Century - new ways to represent the world
Renaissance and the Rise of Science
Newtonian world view and the Rise of Mechanism

Quantum Theory
Planck, Bohr, Pauli and Heisenberg
Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle
The Observer is the Observed
Schrodinger's Cat Paradox
Chance in Quantum Theory
The Copenhagen Interpretation
Einstein-Bohr debates
A "veiled reality" or no reality?
Limits to what can be said
EPR Paradox, Bell's Theorem and Non-locality

Quantum Theory and Beyond
Crisis between Relativity and Quantum Theory
Symmetry Breaking
Theories of Everything
A New Order in Physics

David Bohm's Contributions
The Implicate Order
The Quantum Potential, Active Information and proto-mind
The Role of Language and the Rheomode

How can we say what we mean? (Russell and Wittgenstein)
"We are suspended in language" (Bohr)
Blackfoot world view and the Whorf-Sapir Hypothesis.
Bohm, the Blackfoot and the Rheomode

Perception in the Mind
Visual Perception
Whitehead and perception in the mind
Jung's Rational Functions
Scientific theories as ways of seeing

Alternative World Views
European consciousness in the early Middle Ages
The world of the Blackfoot and Iroquois
To what extent does science present us with facts about the world and to what extent is it a story created by our society?

What is the nature of creativity in nature and mind?
Creativity as: "making it new", "acts of renewal", "making it whole"
Creativity and embodiment
Dionysius and Apollo in the act of creation
Alchemical Cycles in the body
The role of beauty in physics and art

Chaos Theory
The basic ideas of chaos theory and their applications in society, organizations and everyday life
Self-organization and Open systems
Limit cycles, Strange Attractors and Fractals
Chaos as infinite order
Limits to description, prediction and control

Art and Science
General discussion of the scientific and artistic approaches and the possibilities for dialogue between them.

From Certainty to Uncertainty
Revolutions in twentieth century thought including.
Postmodernism, Godel's Theorem, post-modern physics

Synchronicity: Jung and Pauli
Some basic ideas in Jung
The encounter of Jung and Pauli
The "Irrational in Nature"
Matter and Psyche

In light of the range of ideas to be covered, the workshop will proceed in a gentle way. In addition to lecture periods with time for questions, there will be group discussions and one-on-one sessions when participants have a chance to discuss, in depth, issues of particular interest to them.

Note: During the courses, one afternoon may be set aside for those who wish to do a little sight-seeing. Participants will also be encouraged to engage in some art work or creative writing during the course.

Course Cost: $1,300 (US)
Costs cover tuition, accommodation and all meals (traditional Tuscan fare and vegitarians can be catered for), beginning with dinner on the day of arrival and ending with lunch on the final day.


Contact F. David Peat

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