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The Dancing Wu Li Masters: An Overview of the New Physics (1979)

by Gary Zukav

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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2,469304,262 (3.72)28
Explores the history and concepts of physics, including quantum mechanics and relativity theory, within the framework of Eastern thought to unravel the mysteries of the physical universe.
  1. 00
    The Quark and the Jaguar: Adventures in the Simple and the Complex by Murray Gell-Mann (Limelite)
    Limelite: Eminently readable, fun, and adventurous with the added bonus of being about actual quantum physics.
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» See also 28 mentions

English (26)  Tagalog (1)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (30)
Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
There are a good number of books on the shelf near my desk that I notice have a bookmark sticking up out of the pages. THE DANCING WU LI MASTERS was one of them. I always thought of this title as one of the great primers on modern physics but I had not made it through to the end. Now that I have I am starting to think that Gary Zukav may be one of our great thinkers. I am sitting here deeply impressed with how the last chapter, "The End of Science," written around 1978 is the prelude to George Musser's late 2015 book on physics and the end of space, SPOOKY ACTION AT A DISTANCE.

I believe it was Richard Feynman who told his sister Joan that when you dive into a difficult book and get stuck, go back to the beginning and start over. I think of this as similar to getting a car up a snowy road. Now that I have made it all the way through DANCING in the mass paperback version, I ordered a good copy of the hardback and plan to back up and get a start on the icy hill yet another time.

Zukav claims to have a lack of education in physics and a liberal arts mentality. When Zukav wrote DANCING there were not many physicists yet who were familiar with John Stewart Bell's theorem regarding quantum entanglement and the fact that it was being proven. Yet Zukav looked into and predicted the end of science. Which is much of where Musser arrives today with SPOOKY. As you read them, pay no attention to your smoke alarm. That is just the stuff curling from your ears. ( )
  Mark-Bailey | Aug 7, 2020 |
My first look at what was then a very new field of study ( )
  jamespurcell | Jun 8, 2020 |
An entertaining book that attempts to explain the principles of Quantum Mechanics to the layman without using mathematics. My only issue with the book was how it was organized. I suppose with what was being discussed it made sense for it to start out each chapter at one again. Then again, I don't particularly care for when it does that.

The Dancing Wu Li Masters from the title refers to what the Chinese call physics. Wu Li refers to a bunch of different things since Chinese is one of those languages that is hard to translate into English. Anyway, the author has no prior scientific or mathematical background so I was pretty impressed by the end result.

The book is divided into six parts with each part being named after a tenable translation of Wu Li. The first on is called Wu Li, the second part is called Patterns of Organic Energy, the third part is called My Way, the fourth is called Nonsense, the fifth is called I Clutch My Ideas, and the last section is called Enlightenment.

The ideas of Quantum Mechanics don't really bother me, so I guess I don't particularly understand it. That's just how particles behave, right? Particles are Waves and Waves are Particles depending on what you expect to observe or measure. Sure there was a huge paradigm shift in the accepted ideas of physics, but all that is probably because I am too young to remember Feynman being alive.

In any case, this book was quite good. The book was looked over by physicists for accuracy, but it is still from the 1970s and as such has the particle zoo. ( )
  Floyd3345 | Jun 15, 2019 |
This is an amazing book and amazing so, because it revitalized the science training within me! As a teenager, I was so absorbed and completely fascinated by Neils Bohr's postulates, Max Planck's Theory that Physics was the air i breathed! And, after that phase I realized I was so out of touch of this very nature- atoms/protons/ quasi-protons/ quarks! Wow! This book truly is meant for the ordinary layman who is or was never a science student! I can even think of a few friends I can gift this book to! What science really means in the life of a student and a researcher versus in the ordinary life of a layman, this book completely closes gaps on it!

What a wonderful lucid style of explaining modern physics! I kept reading hungrily, savouring every single word, if there were equations, my joy would have have known no bounds! Clearly, one of the best resource books for everyone! The Wu Li masters philosophy is interesting too! This book is highly recommended and if i were on the education board, this would just be THE book to study! ( )
  Sharayu_Gangurde | Jan 19, 2017 |
There are a good number of books on the shelf near my desk that I notice have a bookmark sticking up out of the pages. THE DANCING WU LI MASTERS was one of them. I always thought of this title as one of the great primers on modern physics but I had not made it through to the end. Now that I have I am starting to think that Gary Zukav may be one of our great thinkers. I am sitting here deeply impressed with how the last chapter, "The End of Science," written around 1978 is the prelude to George Musser's late 2015 book on physics and the end of space, SPOOKY ACTION AT A DISTANCE.

I believe it was Richard Feynman who told his sister Joan that when you dive into a difficult book and get stuck, go back to the beginning and start over. I think of this as similar to getting a car up a snowy road. Now that I have made it all the way through DANCING in the mass paperback version, I ordered a good copy of the hardback and plan to back up and get a start on the icy hill yet another time.

Zukav claims to have a lack of education in physics and a liberal arts mentality. When Zukav wrote DANCING there were not many physicists yet who were familiar with John Stewart Bell's theorem regarding quantum entanglement and the fact that it was being proven. Yet Zukav looked into and predicted the end of science. Which is much of where Musser arrives today with SPOOKY. As you read them, pay no attention to your smoke alarm. That is just the stuff curling from your ears. ( )
  torreyhouse | Jun 25, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Zukav, Garyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Finkelstein, DavidForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jonkers, RonaldTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kousbroek, RudyForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Explores the history and concepts of physics, including quantum mechanics and relativity theory, within the framework of Eastern thought to unravel the mysteries of the physical universe.

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Ytterligare en bok som gjort mig intresserad av fysik och gett mig nya tankar om tillvaron.
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