On Creativity and Perception

David Joseph Bohm

(December 20, 1917, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania – October 27, 1992, London) was an American-born quantum physicist who made significant contributions in the fields of theoretical physics, philosophy and neuropsychology, and to the Manhattan Project.

Bridging science, philosophy, and cognition

Bohm’s scientific and philosophical views seemed inseparable. In 1959, his wife Saral recommended to him a book she had seen in the library by the world-renown speaker on life subjects, Jiddu Krishnamurti. Bohm found himself impressed by the way his own ideas on quantum mechanics meshed with the seemingly-philosophical ideas of Krishnamurti. Bohm’s approach to philosophy and physics receive expression in his 1980 book Wholeness and the Implicate Order, and in his 1987 book Science, Order and Creativity. Bohm and Krishnamurti went on to become close friends for over 25 years, with a deep mutual interest in philosophical subjects and the state of humanity.

Dr. Terrence Webster-Doyle’s work was greatly influenced by Bohm’s insights into conditioned thinking. His books Thought as a System, as well as On Dialogue helped create the basis for Webster-Doyle’s BioCognetic Peace Education series understanding how thought can falsely define one’s perception of reality, and therefore can create conflict, within one’s self and hence outwardly in society. Atrium Society

Pg 34, On Creativity, edited by Lee Nichol and by David Bohm

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10 Responses to On Creativity and Perception

  1. Phil Warnell says:

    Hi Plato,It seems again you have made mention of those of which I’m greatly familiar and hold interest in. That is I think I’ve made it evident in the past that Bohmian Mechanics is one of several perspectives I incorporate in attempting to grasp some bit of the whole. Bohm represents one of those that struggled to maintain his thinking to look “outside the box” as they say. The strange thing is there never is a box beyond ones of our own creation. This is what formed the connection between him and Krishnamurti , whose theme continues with Webster-Doyle. Bohm talked of it as the conscious state of non thought , while Krishnamurti simply said it’s what comes when the mind is absolutely still (quiet). Webster-Doyle on the other hand attempts to bring this all down to earth by expressing it as forming opinion without prejudice so to speak. On examination those like Bohm, Pirsig, Bell, Einstein, Noether, Fermat, Descartes, Archimedes, Aristotle and Plato they also recognized and attained periods of this for a while. It is called many things yet I’m convinced what they achieved none of it could have been done without coming to this place. These all form to be part of my influence and yet even with the grateful benefit of having a mentor for a while, I have yet to maintain that state for all but the briefest of moments. So does this mean my mind cannot be that still or rather that aperture which can be opened to see not wide enough? I’ve come to understand it to be the latter, yet I’m not in despair for the journey is what’s important, as even for those I’ve mentioned the destination is never reached. “The brain is the source of thought. The brain is matter and thought is matter. Can the brain – with all its reactions and its immediate responses to every challenge and demand – can the brain be very still? It is not a question of ending thought, but of whether the brain can be completely still? This stillness is not physical death. See what happens when the brain is completely still.”[-Jiddu KrishnamurtiBest,Phil

  2. Plato says:

    Hi Phil,Yes I was aware of your interest, as well. My own interest sometime past, in his book Wholeness and the implicate Order. The subject “on creativity” is the link here. Homer-Dixon may call it ingenuity( a light bulb moment), but this is a view that when you acculturate information there is a “leap here outside of that box thinking” as you point out. Kuhn fits here as well. One does not ignore the preparation.The thoughts you shared on your mentor seemed to me to be the right way in which one seeks, not to find someone too supplant their perspective in you or others. But truly leads you to the insights, so that they can experience for themself. There is no question here. You did that by introducing Pirsig when I had no previous knowledge of him. Pirsig shed new light on Bohm unintentionally? You recognized something in my own writing perhaps?I had seen the book around but had never read it. It seems to have come at the right time in my life. To remind me of what I already knew. It is that way for all of us because deep down we do recognize the truth when we are being told.AS a father/mothers you know in your own heart that your children will have to live their own life. All you can hope for is that you have empowered them to accept their own journey into the world and that they are strong and independent enough. Not to have them live your life. Not to take on the role of parent in society either.IN this case, Bohm on creativity, it is the familiarity of the “quality and the good” were with words that Bohm spoke and these resonate as Pirsig’s did. To me, they are both saying the same thing. Phil:Webster-Doyle on the other hand attempts to bring this all down to earth by expressing it as forming opinion without prejudice so to speak.This is an important perspective to me. Not all of us will find meditation of value pursuing that still mind “that way.” Always rushing and being busy.:) But this to me, was still a functionality of an idea about the capability that resides in each of us, without branding it as a tool needed. The needed journey to different lands, to find that place within. I believe Pirsig comes to this same conclusion? I am not saying this is of no use but on the contrary keeps one aware of the intrusion of thoughts( ever watchful of them.) Points the way to such a place for silence to be discovered and then, receptive and open too.Natures influence is alway kind in this way. Running water, mountain air. Valley perspectives:) A place, no matter where you sit.What you do not know is that Carl Jung was a great influence on my mind in terms of the practicality of journaling. AS you say, the still mind is not death, but I have heard, that the mind that succumbs to sleep and awakens in it and is aware, is that mind which “is” and becomes the mind of the soul. A nice way to begin your journey when you pass over.That if such a state is thought to shift from our mortal journeys, then what of the thought held in such a state? I created the Colour of Gravity for such a time. As well, tried to show you “the weight of thought” in relation to the heart as shown of Anubis weighting the heart and the feather. This was presented to me and I would present it to you to ponder sometime, as to what it means.Like a koan demonstrated to me, was to recognize such a place and that is a true understanding and the quickest route too. The conclusion, is inescapable.I hope you will not find this too frivolous and metaphysically tainted. I am comfortable with it.:) IT was Einstein’s Pretty girl which gave me the clue. Time is measured in that way and thought varied in coloured then.Best,

  3. PlatoHagel says:

    Hi Phil,Yes I was aware of your interest, as well. My own interest sometime past, in his book Wholeness and the implicate Order. The subject \”on creativity\” is the link here. Homer-Dixon may call it ingenuity( a light bulb moment), but this is a view that when you acculturate information there is a \”leap here outside of that box thinking\” as you point out. Kuhn fits here as well. One does not ignore the preparation.The thoughts you shared on your mentor seemed to me to be the right way in which one seeks, not to find someone too supplant their perspective in you or others. But truly leads you to the insights, so that they can experience for themself. There is no question here. You did that by introducing Pirsig when I had no previous knowledge of him. Pirsig shed new light on Bohm unintentionally? You recognized something in my own writing perhaps?I had seen the book around but had never read it. It seems to have come at the right time in my life. To remind me of what I already knew. It is that way for all of us because deep down we do recognize the truth when we are being told.AS a father/mothers you know in your own heart that your children will have to live their own life. All you can hope for is that you have empowered them to accept their own journey into the world and that they are strong and independent enough. Not to have them live your life. Not to take on the role of parent in society either.IN this case, Bohm on creativity, it is the familiarity of the \”quality and the good\” were with words that Bohm spoke and these resonate as Pirsig\’s did. To me, they are both saying the same thing. Phil:Webster-Doyle on the other hand attempts to bring this all down to earth by expressing it as forming opinion without prejudice so to speak.This is an important perspective to me. Not all of us will find meditation of value pursuing that still mind \”that way.\” Always rushing and being busy.:) But this to me, was still a functionality of an idea about the capability that resides in each of us, without branding it as a tool needed. The needed journey to different lands, to find that place within. I believe Pirsig comes to this same conclusion? I am not saying this is of no use but on the contrary keeps one aware of the intrusion of thoughts( ever watchful of them.) Points the way to such a place for silence to be discovered and then, receptive and open too.Natures influence is alway kind in this way. Running water, mountain air. Valley perspectives:) A place, no matter where you sit.What you do not know is that Carl Jung was a great influence on my mind in terms of the practicality of journaling. AS you say, the still mind is not death, but I have heard, that the mind that succumbs to sleep and awakens in it and is aware, is that mind which \”is\” and becomes the mind of the soul. A nice way to begin your journey when you pass over.That if such a state is thought to shift from our mortal journeys, then what of the thought held in such a state? I created the Colour of Gravity for such a time. As well, tried to show you \”the weight of thought\” in relation to the heart as shown of Anubis weighting the heart and the feather. This was presented to me and I would present it to you to ponder sometime, as to what it means.Like a koan demonstrated to me, was to recognize such a place and that is a true understanding and the quickest route too. The conclusion, is inescapable.I hope you will not find this too frivolous and metaphysically tainted. I am comfortable with it.:) IT was Einstein\’s Pretty girl which gave me the clue. Time is measured in that way and thought varied in coloured then.Best,

  4. Phil Warnell says:

    Hi Plato,“IN this case, Bohm on creativity, it is the familiarity of the “quality and the good” were with words that Bohm spoke and these resonate as Pirsig’s did. To me, they are both saying the same thing.”Then the debt I owe to my mentor is being repaid as it was he who introduced Pirsig to me. In earnest you have captured the deeper connection quicker then I had, which perhaps suggests that you had been better prepared then I was at the time. The saddest thing for me is that both Bohm and Bell’s time on this earth seems to have been shorter then required, with those that followed them stepping off the true path as to leave it for others to find again and follow. That is for them the math has so preoccupied their minds as to leave less room for the quiet of creativity to enter. “What you do not know is that Carl Jung was a great influence on my mind in terms of the practicality of journaling;”To be honest I know little of Jung, besides what I’ve read lately and perhaps this is where you can be mentor to me for a while. By measuring myself by his scale I find I have more the mind of a philosopher then a scientist, which doesn’t surprise me, yet for it able to be determined by a test intrigues me. Yet what is truly important is it that it gives us ways to determine the strengths of others and that truly is an aid to all. Freud could only see what has people to be weak, yet Jung showed that character needs first to be recognized for its strengths and that we only fall into trouble when we are not true to that character, for its good rather then one being better then another. So I will watch with interest as your own journey continues to unfold.Best,Phil

  5. Plato says:

    Hi Phil,It has always been for me the essence of what you had spoken of, when the two individuals set out to rescue the individual, and the possible routes that were calculable for one, got them there quicker. While the other, set off to rescue, had found it had already been accomplished.Phil:That is for them the math has so preoccupied their minds as to leave less room for the quiet of creativity to enter. The paragraph I highlighted from Bohm’s book is a “travel plan” in my thinking about the math.I do not doubt that without this “quality,” it is a cold and austere math that exchanges between minds without meaning. A “rote system” without the application of that same quality. Why the philosophy more so?:) If we are to call it the “Socratic method of teaching” then lets realize what the brick is here. The math can not be without the other halve, to realize the flexibility of the mind to venture off in vision and applicability, as Dirac did, or to find Feynman supplied the toy model for such routes. Then, to further translate this under a new guise that remains far from the everyday mind. To have ventured here was to recognize that Colour of Gravity is as much a thing for the living, as to live well, to prepare the mind for what is to come.When I read this passage of Bohm’s it is what “rang a bell” in my estimate as to what was needed. In not so many words, and in a round about way I have been always trying to speak the deepest part of mind, but even I am ill prepared to get right to it, and always, the attempt to define. A “positioned” question mark so as to be progressive.ON another level, by introduction of Young’s experiment, how is it you had elevated “such symbolism” to speak about the “quality and the good” as represented in this way? Again, I should ask for clarification so as to ask that I am retaining by this definition the “equality in association” as the “quality of the good” in my estimate.Can it be said that unconsciously you have used what Bohm writes as to represent the “quality of the language” that is pure, that leads one, as others, had been lead right to it??This would be an exercise in my thinking to recognize what is contained within one’s own self to express, and one’s ability, and to see how it is applied in our thinking.Best,

  6. PlatoHagel says:

    Hi Phil,It has always been for me the essence of what you had spoken of, when the two individuals set out to rescue the individual, and the possible routes that were calculable for one, got them there quicker. While the other, set off to rescue, had found it had already been accomplished.Phil:That is for them the math has so preoccupied their minds as to leave less room for the quiet of creativity to enter. The paragraph I highlighted from Bohm\’s book is a \”travel plan\” in my thinking about the math.I do not doubt that without this \”quality,\” it is a cold and austere math that exchanges between minds without meaning. A \”rote system\” without the application of that same quality. Why the philosophy more so?:) If we are to call it the \”Socratic method of teaching\” then lets realize what the brick is here. The math can not be without the other halve, to realize the flexibility of the mind to venture off in vision and applicability, as Dirac did, or to find Feynman supplied the toy model for such routes. Then, to further translate this under a new guise that remains far from the everyday mind. To have ventured here was to recognize that Colour of Gravity is as much a thing for the living, as to live well, to prepare the mind for what is to come.When I read this passage of Bohm\’s it is what \”rang a bell\” in my estimate as to what was needed. In not so many words, and in a round about way I have been always trying to speak the deepest part of mind, but even I am ill prepared to get right to it, and always, the attempt to define. A \”positioned\” question mark so as to be progressive.ON another level, by introduction of Young\’s experiment, how is it you had elevated \”such symbolism\” to speak about the \”quality and the good\” as represented in this way? Again, I should ask for clarification so as to ask that I am retaining by this definition the \”equality in association\” as the \”quality of the good\” in my estimate.Can it be said that unconsciously you have used what Bohm writes as to represent the \”quality of the language\” that is pure, that leads one, as others, had been lead right to it??This would be an exercise in my thinking to recognize what is contained within one\’s own self to express, and one\’s ability, and to see how it is applied in our thinking.Best,

  7. Plato says:

    Arthur Miller Einstein and Schrödinger never fully accepted the highly abstract nature of Heisenberg’s quantum mechanics, says Miller. They agreed with Galileo’s assertion that “the book of nature is written in mathematics”, but they also realized the power of using visual imagery to represent mathematical symbols.Did Picasso know about Einstein?

  8. PlatoHagel says:

    Arthur Miller Einstein and Schrödinger never fully accepted the highly abstract nature of Heisenberg\’s quantum mechanics, says Miller. They agreed with Galileo\’s assertion that \”the book of nature is written in mathematics\”, but they also realized the power of using visual imagery to represent mathematical symbols.Did Picasso know about Einstein?

  9. Plato says:

    See also, Mathematics Meets the Mind’s EyeIN this case, there was an attempt in this “ill defined way” to arrive at issues as to the nature of the quality of the good. But if you understand the mind’s capability to explore new regions of space, then you will understand quickly, the space where no man has gone before?:)Best,

  10. PlatoHagel says:

    See also, Mathematics Meets the Mind\’s EyeIN this case, there was an attempt in this \”ill defined way\” to arrive at issues as to the nature of the quality of the good. But if you understand the mind\’s capability to explore new regions of space, then you will understand quickly, the space where no man has gone before?:)Best,

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