Niels Bohr and Washington
- Like all physicists outside Hitler's Germany, Bohr worked at the Los
Alamos Laboratory during WWII. He was known there as Nicholas Baker.
What does he have to with the capital city of the United States?
Before addressing this serious question, let us look at some photos.
- Bohr's statue
on the old campus of the Univ. of Copenhagen. I was there.
- Bohr and Heisenberg.
They were very close to each other until Heisenberg started working on
Hitler's nuclear bomb project. Bohr went to England first, then to
the United States to join the Manhattan project.
- Bohr and Einstein.
Bohr was worrying about the electron orbit of the hydrogen atom.
Einstein was worrying about how things look to moving observers.
Why did they not worry about how the electron orbit looks to a moving observer? This is what I have been doing since 1965. Click here if you did not know I was doing physics.
- Danish student in Athens. I am sitting next to her in this photo. She was very proud to tell me she went to Gammelholm School. Bohr was a student there. This photo was taken at the Agora Market place. I went there to produce this page about Socrates.
At the conclusion of his talk, Vilhelm Bohr showed the image of Taoism.
- Bohr's statue on the old campus of the Univ. of Copenhagen. I was there.
- The Headquarters of the American
Institute of Physics is in
College Park, not far from my office at the Univ. of Maryland.
Many AIP people come to seminars and colloquia held at the Physics
Building of UMD. I sometimes go the AIP building for public lectures.
The history library in this building is called the
Niels Bohr Library
- In January of 2014, Niels Bohr's grandson gave a public lecture at the
AIP headquarters. Here is
my photo with the grandson, great grandson, and
H. Frederick Dylla ( Executive Director and CEO of AIP).
- His name is Vilhelm Bohr, and showed many photos contained in
this pdf link.
- At the conclusion of his talk, he showed
this image, indicating that
Nield Bohr at one point was interested in the oriental philosophy of
It was a surprise to me, but not a surprise. For many years, I had a suspicion that Bohr's complementarity or wave-particle duality is quite consistent with this Taoist diagram. But I was afraid of saying this, largely because of my Asian background. Earlier, I wrote an article about Kiekegaard's influence on Bohr. Soren Kierkegaard was a Danish theologian who worried about how God appears to humans, or how humans should look at God.
I have many philosopher friends, but I do not like them because they say they are smarter than I am. However, I like them when they say what I like to hear.
- In January of 2014, Niels Bohr's grandson gave a public lecture at the AIP headquarters. Here is my photo with the grandson, great grandson, and H. Frederick Dylla ( Executive Director and CEO of AIP).
- I read many articles saying Einstein's philosophical base was
Kantianism. In 1995, I read a newspaper article saying that
Kant lived in his hometown of Koenigsberg (Now Kaliningrad) for
entire 80 years of his life, and he formulated his philosophy
from the frequently changing political environment.
- In 2005, I went to Kaliningrad to see whether the review article
tells the truth. I found out it is true. In addition, I noted
that Kaliningrad was a maritime transportation center,
like Venice, where many people with different ideas. After this
trip, I constructed
a webpage and updated it as needed.
While I was there, I was able to see the way in which Katianism was developed was the same as Taoism was developed in ancient China. I gave a talk on this subject at a meeting of the Italian Society of History of Science. This talk was published in the proceedings, but you can get it easily from the arXiv. If you are interested only in photos, click here.
Recently, I found an article written on this subject by a professional philosopher. The title of his paper is "Kant's Thing in Itself or the Tao of Koenigsberg."
- If I was able to make this observation while staying three days
Kaliningrad (Koenigsberg) which was a very strange city, I should be
able to make a more profound statement based on what I observed in a
city I stayed for more than fifty years. I came to the Univ. of
Maryland in 1962. The UMD campus is about 20 kilometers from the
White House. I say "Washington," whenever I am asked
where I came from.
- People of the world say this and that about the United States, but
the portraits of Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley are everywhere
in the world. They become unhappy when American politicians
tell them how to run their government. Yet, they like to learn
from Americans how to manage democracy.
This is a photo of myself with a group of Albanians taken at the Charles de Gaul Airport in 1999. They said they are government officials going to Washington to learn how Americans run their democracy.
- It took Americans many years to establish their two-party system.
This system seems to be the magic for managing their democracy. I am
quite familiar with how this system was developed. It was just
like the way in which Taoism was created in China.
- Do American politicians study Taoism before getting elected? The
answer is clearly No. Most of them never heard of this word. They developed
their own skill of grouping many different ideas into two groups from
their own experiences.
I once asked an expert on Chinese affairs why the creators of this Taoist ideology could not practice it in their own politics. His answer was that there are 100 million members of the Chinese Communist Party. Within the party, there are two factions. There is thus a two-party system within the party. This answer seems to make sense to me even though I do not know much about their political system.
- If I was able to make this observation while staying three days Kaliningrad (Koenigsberg) which was a very strange city, I should be able to make a more profound statement based on what I observed in a city I stayed for more than fifty years. I came to the Univ. of Maryland in 1962. The UMD campus is about 20 kilometers from the White House. I say "Washington," whenever I am asked where I came from.
- In order to show you how much I know about the city of Washington, I
prepared a webpage dedicated to Washington, DC, U.S.A.
- There are other Bohr pages.