Spectrum of Mind: An Inquiry into the Principles of the Mind and the Meaning of Life
Spectrum of Mind: An Inquiry into the Principles of the Mind and Meaning of Life is a book that explores the timeless quest for the true meaning of life, a quandary that has inspired philosophers, religious leaders, and scientists. Part philosophy, part scientific exploration, Spectrum argues “the understanding of ourselves is crucial to our lives” and strives to provide the reader not with answers, but, instead, with key concepts and methods used to search for the meaning of life. As the author explains, it is not his job to tell the reader what to think, but, rather, to provide them with what to think about, acting as a guide on a journey as a fellow mind.
A relatively short book, Yang packs a lot into these pages. He discusses not only quantum mechanics, the human mind, the role culture and religion play, but also where philosophy fits in, not leaving out the consideration of why seek meaning in the first place. Overall, the journey in seeking the meaning of life is, according to Yang, highly personal, and it is in the journey and not the destination where readers will find answers. This book is only a step in that direction along the journey.
While this is probably not a book for the casual reader, one who would rather be entertained than challenged or reflective, it is a book suited to a reader seeking to reconcile various—even conflicting—pieces of knowledge and values. Spectrum of Mind is a heavy book, but by no means impenetrable in terms of reading or concepts. Its goal is to expose the reader to various ways of thinking from the religious, scientific, and philosophic spectrum, in order to push the limits of knowledge and reason. This is a book for a reader with an interest in expanding their knowledge base and the intersection of science and philosophy, and also, of course, the reader seeking meaning on their journey of life.