Tag Archives: books

Currently Reading – The Anatomy of Dreams

The Anatomy of Dreams by Chloe Benjamin

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I really really want to like this book because it’s about lucid dream research, but I’m having a lot of difficulty getting into it. Not sure if it’s because I can’t seem to really relate to the characters or what, but I’m finding myself losing interest in the parts of the story that don’t involve the dream research. I am about one third of the way through at the moment and will keep you posted. So far it seems to be not quite a love story between a girl and boy who are classmates at a boarding school and who meet up again in college and are recruited by their high school professor to become lucid dream researchers when after a while, Sylvie, the girl, begins to have doubts about the ethics of the research. I have read from other reviews that the last half of the book gets better so I will keep going….


Adventures in Book Shopping

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I got these books last night after spending about an hour in the science section of Dimple books (http://www.dimple.com)…Yes I know I have an addiction. At least I wasn’t at the free bookstore (http://www.bayareafreebookexchange.com), I would have had 3 times this amount. So here’s my story: it’s about 10 minutes before they close, and I want to look at the philosophy section briefly, so I’m trying to carry all these books in my hands, I have them in a stack when I see a book I want to look at. I don’t really want to put the ones I’m carrying down so I kind of lean them against the shelf so I can pick up the book. As I’m doing this two guys come into the store. One of them says he wants to show the other one a book. As they walk by me one of them speaks, so I say hi. He asks why I’m holding the books like that and if I work there. I explain that I’m just trying to carry them so I can pay for them. He picks up an astrology book, opens it, and asks what my sign is:

Me: Scorpio

Him: Oh well we’re a perfect match!

Me: What is your sign?

Him: Libra

Me: Okay… (thinking: Right…not sure Libras and Scorpios go well together…but ok)

Him: I bet you have more books than friends.

Me: (gives him confused look while trying to read the back of the book I had picked up) Why do you say that?….What’s that supposed to mean? (I should have said: While that may be true, I have found they are much better company than most people.)

Him: (awkward silence) So you should give me your number. (He pulls out his phone.)

Me: (Seriously? shaking head) No, sorry.

He (thankfully) walks away.

So yeah, weird encounter aside, I’m excited about my new books :) Especially Bride of Science by Benjamin Wooley and Nature’s Numbers by Ian Stewart. The books I found seem to have certain themes. For a lot of the day yesterday, I was doing some research on genealogy and am very interested in learning my history and where my ancestors came from and then I find the National Geographic book on Deep Ancestry by Spencer Wells and Before the Dawn by Nicholas Wade. Also, the nautilus symbol seems to keep reappearing for me: 1. We recently talked about it in one of my classes. 2. I recently discovered this magazine and blog called Nautilus (http://nautil.us) 3. It’s on the cover of the Nature’s Numbers book and a Sacred Geometry book I found. So maybe there is some significance to it for me. The other theme I saw was the intersection of art and science which has always inspired me, but even more so after having re-read the book that sparked my interest in science (see last post) Properties of Light by Rebecca Goldstein. So definitely excited to get started. Now all I need is lots of time…

 

 

 


Properties of Light

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I just re-read this book, Properties of Light by Rebecca Goldstein. I first read it 14 years ago, it was then that I fell in love with the mysteries of quantum physics. I loved the mixture of poetry and science, the confluence of reality and unreality. It is why I studied science. But I think somewhere, I got a little lost… I think maybe I am still searching for that poetry, that sense of knowledge without reason, that exists somewhere between objectivity and subjectivity, forever suspended in quantum uncertainty.


Being Human Conference Book List

So I’m going to San Francisco this month, and this is my excuse! There’s a Being Human conference entitled The Science of Human Experience on March 24, 2012. The panel of speakers include scientists, artists, poets, philosophers, and others whose work relates to the human condition. They will be discussing current research and theories on various aspects of human nature and what it means to be human. Visit their website www.beinghuman2012.org for more info or to register. Books by each of the featured speakers are listed below. I’m going to pick up a few of them before the conference and I’ll post my impressions. Also book reviews, etc. coming soon!

Richard J. Davidson, Ph.D.

Founder and Chair, Center for Investigating Healthy Minds, Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Peter Baumann

Author and Founder, The Baumann Foundation

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David Eagleman, Ph.D.

Neuroscientist, Professor of Neuroscience and Psychiatry, Baylor College of Medicine

[amazon asin=0307377334&template=iframe image][amazon asin=0307389936&template=iframe image]

Paul Ekman, Ph.D.

Manager, Paul Ekman Group, LLC

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Anne Harrington, Ph.D.

Professor of the History of Science, Harvard University

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Jane Hirshfield

Prize-winning International Poet, Translator, and Essayist

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Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D.

Professor of Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, and Founder, Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society

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Beau Lotto, Ph.D.

Neuroscientist and Artist, Founder of Lottolab Studio

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Hazel Markus, Ph.D.

Davis-Brack Professor in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University

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Thomas Metzinger, Ph.D.

Professor of Theoretical Philosophy, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

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V.S. Ramachandran, Ph.D.

Director, Center for Brain and Cognition, University of California-San Diego

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Gelek Rimpoche

Founder, Jewel Heart, Tibetan Buddhist Center

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Laurie Santos, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Psychology, Yale University

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