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Uncommon Wisdom: Conversations with Remarkable People (Flamingo) Paperback – 23 Feb 1989


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Uncommon Wisdom: Conversations with Remarkable People (Flamingo) + Web of Life: A New Synthesis of Mind and Matter + Turning Point (Flamingo)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Flamingo; New Ed edition (23 Feb. 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0006543413
  • ISBN-13: 978-0006543411
  • Product Dimensions: 20.5 x 14 x 3.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 529,145 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Fritjof Capra received his PhD in theoretical physics from the University of Vienna and has done research in high-energy physics at several European and American universities. Capra has written and lectured extensively about the philosophical implications of modern science and is author of ‘The Tao of Physics’, ‘The Turning Point’ and ‘Uncommon Wisdom’.

Currently Director of the Centre for Ecoliteracy in Berkeley, California, he lives in Berkeley with his wife and daughter.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By conjunction on 29 Aug. 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book basically catalogues the process Capra went through in researching and writing 'The Turning Point', his previous book, which itself tries to parallel the learning Capra achieved in his study of modern physics and mysticism in 'The Tao of Physics' with the development of relational, non-Cartesian thinking in a series of disciplines including economics, medecine and psychology.

Capra's basic premise is that since the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century humanity has largely thrown out its previous world view which relied on a perhaps instinctive view of the connectedness of all things, and replaced it with a view which says, 'If it can't be measured, forget it'. In doing so we have acquired enormous wealth and great knowledge of pieces of the world we live in but have increasingly found it hard to see the whole, and have even lost belief that there is any meaning to the whole.

Capra argues that the development of modern physics undermines this Cartesian, scientific approach because it teaches us that things are not what they seem and that the search for the essential building blocks of matter now suggests that trelationship is everything even in scientific measurement. Capra in his first two books went on to note how a similar approach to thinking can be found in many practitioners of other sciences and disciplines, including systemic therapy, various other approaches to psychiatry and medecine, and also in economics and ecology.

In 'Uncommon Wisdom', as stated, Capra details his meetings and conversations with a series of 'advisers' who have influenced his thought. These figures include Gregory Bateson, R. D. Laing, Hazel Henderson, Stanislav Grof, Margaret Lock and many others.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Steven Calvert on 6 May 2006
Format: Paperback
... and I haven't even finished it yet.

I've been a Capra fan ever since 'Web of Life' changed my world view, but this book is something different. The reader gets to delve into some of the formative experiences that have moulded Capra's mind in to the incisive, inquisitive and enlightened force that produced 'Tao of Physics' and 'Turning Point'.

It's an extremely well written piece - thoughtful and thought-provoking, informed and informative - a linguistic sculpture by an artist with a shocking talent who loves his work.

Capra is surprisingly open about the influences that each extraordinary person had on his own thinking style and processes, and the book contains many gems of sheer intuition - the kind that make one stop reading just to allow time to absorb them. Best of all, it's possible to share Capra's comprehension because of the faithfully recorded intellectual debates in which he made each mental leap himself.

A joy - thoroughly recommended.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 7 April 2002
Format: Paperback
Capra has taken the ardous task of distilling wisdom from extraordinary people spanning Spirituality, Physics, Economics, Psychiatry, Medicine, Systems theory and feminism, all in this book. The book sums up his discussions, explorations with some extraordinary minds like Krishnamurti and Alan watts on the limitation of thought; Geoffery chew on boot strap theory;with Gregory Bateson on Systems theory; with R.D.Liang on mental illness; unconventional but ecology inclusive economics with Schumacher and Hazel Henderson; with the Late Indian prime minister Indra Gandhi on Feminism, and many more. Interesting are Capra's personnel observations on the extraordinary people of this book. Capra's sample of extraordinary minds are those people, who could raise above the conditioned perceptive to move towards a more holistic grasp in various feilds. By its very nature it is an open book, to be revised to include new comers, hence is incomplete. It is a meritorious effort, though it fails at times to communicate the depth of understanding and wisdom this remarkable true characters of this book seem to possess, but culminates as a good pointer to the reader who may be interested to pursue more on the original works by the characters themselves.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
Uncommon Wisdom 29 July 2012
By Zaheer Alam Kidvai - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have read this book twice and have read some parts of it more than twice. Conversations are lovely and give you a great deal of new ideas. Am not entirely in love with all of Capra's ideas - but this book is an absolute must read!
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