cover image Uncommon Wisdom: Conversations with Remarkable People

Uncommon Wisdom: Conversations with Remarkable People

Fritjof Capra. Simon & Schuster, $19.45 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-671-47322-8

In attempting to show how encounters with various people fueled the writing of his bestsellers The Tao of Physics and The Turning Point, Capra's new book is alternately superficial and meaty. That he once sat next to Alan Watts at a dinner party, heard Krishnamurti lecture and exchanged observations with Indira Gandhi is revealing of nothing; neither is the detailed synopsis of the author's reading habits. More interesting are conversations recorded here with physicists Werner Heisenberg and Geoffrey Chew, psychotherapists Stanislav Grof and R. D. Laing, economists Hazel Henderson and E. F. Schumacher, and with figures such as systems theorist Gregory Bateson, holistic cancer therapist Carl Simonton and feminist Charlene Spretnak. How Capra came to perceive parallels between modern physics and Eastern mysticism, then went beyond this to a systems viewpoint embracing ecology and spiritual awareness, is the heady theme of this self-preoccupied but often stimulating set of talks. (January 29)