Desire creates self-deception. That is, the quickest way to satisfy desire momentarily is to engage in wishful thinking—that is, to arrange your ideas according to what you desire, you see? So I think that this self-deception I’ve observed is one of the major components of human thought. That is, most thought is self-deception. In fact, the dominant thought is almost always self-deception, however rational you may be in applying your techniques. The end is always determined by self-deceptive thought.

from The Nature of Things (1979)

Portrait of David Bohm

David Bohm

Theoretical Physicist
December 20, 1917 – October 27, 1992

David Joseph Bohm FRS was an American scientist who has been described as one of the most significant theoretical physicists of the 20th century and who contributed unorthodox ideas to quantum theory, neuropsychology and the philosophy of mind.

Bohm advanced the view that quantum physics meant that the old Cartesian model of reality—that there are two kinds of substance, the mental and the physical, that somehow interact—was too limited. To complement it, he developed a mathematical and physical theory of “implicate” and “explicate” order. He also believed that the brain, at the cellular level, works according to the mathematics of some quantum effects, and postulated that thought is distributed and non-localised just as quantum entities are.

Bohm warned of the dangers of rampant reason and technology, advocating instead the need for genuine supportive dialogue, which he claimed could broaden and unify conflicting and troublesome divisions in the social world. In this, his epistemology mirrored his ontology. Due to his Communist affiliations, Bohm was the subject of a federal government investigation in 1949, prompting him to leave the United States. He pursued his scientific career in several countries, becoming first a Brazilian and then a British citizen.

Bohm's main concern was with understanding the nature of reality in general and of consciousness in particular as a coherent whole, which according to Bohm is never static or complete but rather an unfolding process.

For a more comprehensive collection of Bohm’s lectures and appearances, visit the David Bohm Society YouTube channel.

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Art Meets Science and Spirituality

From Fragmentation to Wholeness

This film features the Dalai Lama speaking on the nature of mind and on his personal feelings as leader of the Tibetans in exile, the physicist David Bohm, who explains his theory of the "implicate order;" and interviews with artist Robert Rauschenberg and Russian economist Stanislav Menshikov. Artists, scientists, spiritual leaders and economists gathered in Amsterdam in 1990 to explore the emerging paradigm of a holistic world view and the implications for a global economy. The five day confernce was inspired by the artists Joseph Beuys and Robert Filliou, and manifested by Louwrien Wijers, who called it a "mental sculpture."

The Mind in the Universe

Krishnamurti and Bohm ponder if the mind’s reactions ever end. Is there within an empty mind, silent of thought’s chatter, a wellspring of creation? An eternal movement, ever-new? They muse on the flow of universal order—does this stream emerge from an absolute source, a timeless mind one with the cosmos? If so, might a human mind touch this vastness when freed of limitations? A tantalizing possibility glints.

The Nature of Things

Thought is an Abstraction

Cover image for Transformation of Man, Part 1: Are We Aware That We Are Fragmented?

Are We Aware That We Are Fragmented?

Transformation of Man, Part 1

This trialogue between Krishnamurti, Bohm, and Shainberg methodically uncovers the nature of man’s psyche, his fragmentation, the limitations of a thought-based society, and finds out if there is a wholeness, a sacredness in life which is untouched by thought.

Cover image for Transformation of Man, Part 2: A Mechanical Way of Living Leads to Disorder

A Mechanical Way of Living Leads to Disorder

Transformation of Man, Part 2

This trialogue between Krishnamurti, Bohm, and Shainberg methodically uncovers the nature of man’s psyche, his fragmentation, the limitations of a thought-based society, and finds out if there is a wholeness, a sacredness in life which is untouched by thought.

Cover image for Transformation of Man, Part 3: Can I Completely Change at the Very Root?

Can I Completely Change at the Very Root?

Transformation of Man, Part 3

This trialogue between Krishnamurti, Bohm, and Shainberg methodically uncovers the nature of man’s psyche, his fragmentation, the limitations of a thought-based society, and finds out if there is a wholeness, a sacredness in life which is untouched by thought.

Cover image for Transformation of Man, Part 4: In Aloneness You Can Be Completely Secure

In Aloneness You Can Be Completely Secure

Transformation of Man, Part 4

This trialogue between Krishnamurti, Bohm, and Shainberg methodically uncovers the nature of man’s psyche, his fragmentation, the limitations of a thought-based society, and finds out if there is a wholeness, a sacredness in life which is untouched by thought.

Cover image for Transformation of Man, Part 5: Your Image of Yourself Prevents Relationship

Your Image of Yourself Prevents Relationship

Transformation of Man, Part 5

This trialogue between Krishnamurti, Bohm, and Shainberg methodically uncovers the nature of man’s psyche, his fragmentation, the limitations of a thought-based society, and finds out if there is a wholeness, a sacredness in life which is untouched by thought.

Cover image for Transformation of Man, Part 6: Images and Consciousness

Any Form of Image Prevents the Beauty of Relationship

Transformation of Man, Part 6

This trialogue between Krishnamurti, Bohm, and Shainberg methodically uncovers the nature of man’s psyche, his fragmentation, the limitations of a thought-based society, and finds out if there is a wholeness, a sacredness in life which is untouched by thought.

Cover image for Transformation of Man, Part 7: Life is Sacred

Life is Sacred

Transformation of Man, Part 7

This trialogue between Krishnamurti, Bohm, and Shainberg methodically uncovers the nature of man’s psyche, his fragmentation, the limitations of a thought-based society, and finds out if there is a wholeness, a sacredness in life which is untouched by thought.

Mentioned in 9 documents

Terence McKenna

Appreciating Imagination

Join Terence McKenna in this weekend workshop as he takes us on an imaginative journey into the depths of human creativity. Through eloquent exploration of psychedelics, virtual worlds, and shamanic states of consciousness, McKenna reveals how embracing our imagination allows us to envision and manifest alternate realities beyond cultural conditioning. By cultivating our creative faculties with mathematical reasoning, intuition, and immersion in nature, he guides us toward transcending ideological limits into an enlightened future of compassion. Ultimately, breaking boundaries through the power of imagination will inspire us to reach new heights of understanding and connectivity.

Daniel Schmachtenberger and Nate Hagens

Artificial Intelligence and the Superorganism

Daniel Schmachtenberger and Nate Hagens discuss a surprisingly overlooked risk to our global systems and planetary stability: artificial intelligence. Through a systems perspective, Daniel and Nate piece together the biophysical history that has led humans to this point, heading towards (and beyond) numerous planetary boundaries, and facing geopolitical risks all with existential consequences. How does artificial intelligence not only add to these risks, but accelerate the entire dynamic of the metacrisis? What is the role of intelligence versus wisdom on our current global pathway, and can we change course? Does artificial intelligence have a role to play in creating a more stable system, or will it be the tipping point that drives our current one out of control?

Terence McKenna

Build Your Own Damn Wagon

"Do not watch, do not consume," implores Terence McKenna, inviting us on a thought-provoking journey to reclaim our humanness. By building our own conceptual wagons, rather than riding ready-made vehicles of meaning, we can travel along unique paths of critical thinking. Once within our own virtual worlds, the wonder of our distinctive minds will be open for discovery.

Terence McKenna

Countdown Into Complexity

At his weekend workshop Terence led attendees on an intellectual odyssey traversing psychedelics, virtual reality, technology, culture, spirituality, and the evolution of novelty over time. Blending philosophy, futurology, and mysticism, he explored humanity's relationship with nature and machines, challenging participants to think critically, create freely, and keep an open mind. The goal was to expand consciousness and uncover deeper truths about existence.

Terence McKenna

In the Valley of Novelty

Journeying through multiple dimensions of psychedelic consciousness, Terence McKenna's visionary weekend workshop invites us on an entheogenic voyage to the frontiers of the mind and its imminent conquering of matter. Blending scientific insights with shamanic wisdom, McKenna argues that natural plant medicines like psilocybin and DMT provide portals into mystical realms and alien dimensions, catalyzing revelations about nature, reality, and the human psyche. He urges us to courageously explore these consciousness-expanding substances, seeking the gratuitous beauty and truths they unveil. For McKenna, the psychedelic experience holds secrets to our world and ourselves—if only we dare lift the veil.

Terence McKenna

Permitting Smart People to Hope

Delivered at Esalen in California, McKenna traipses through a mélange of scientific and technological folderol—the detection of the top quark, swift progress on sequencing the human genome, newfangled theories about the origin of the moon, quantum bafflements like non-locality, the proliferation of the interwebs and information technology, speculations on the nature of time from that Prigogine fellow, and sundry other bamboozlements. He elucidates how these breakthroughs in diverse fields might converge to profoundly transform human civilization, culture, and consciousness in the imminent future.

Alan Watts

The Book

At the root of human conflict is our fundamental misunderstanding of who we are. The illusion that we are isolated beings, unconnected to the rest of the universe, has led us to view the “outside” world with hostility, and has fueled our misuse of technology and our violent and hostile subjugation of the natural world. In The Book, philosopher Alan Watts provides us with a much-needed answer to the problem of personal identity, distilling and adapting the ancient Hindu philosophy of Vedanta to help us understand that the self is in fact the root and ground of the universe. In this mind-opening and revelatory work, Watts has crafted a primer on what it means to be human—and a manual of initiation into the central mystery of existence.

Terence McKenna, Rupert Sheldrake and Ralph Abraham

The Evolutionary Mind

What could have been the cause for the breakthrough in the evolution of human consciousness around 50,000 years ago? Part of the Trialogues at the Edge of the Unthinkable held at the University of California.

Terence McKenna

Vertigo at History's Edge

As we approach history's climax, McKenna heralds the inevitable complexification of existence. He foretells technology and pharmacology's fusion into higher consciousness and collective awakening through boundary dissolution. Still, the human spirit yearns freedom from constraints of belief, non-experience. McKenna beckons: reclaim your mind, body, and world! Destiny awaits our willful shaping. The cosmic hourglass empties; shall we awaken?