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For Immediate Release

Media contacts:
Jane Turnis
(719) 389-6138
JTurnis@ColoradoCollege.edu

Leslie Weddell
(719) 389-6038
Leslie.Weddell@ColoradoCollege.

ATOMIC PHYSICS, QUANTUM MECHANICS
AND THE DALAI LAMA? SCIENTIST BRIDGES THE GAP

Arthur Zajonc to discuss science, spirituality and  breaking common cognitive ground

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Jan. 23, 2007 – Arthur Zajonc is an internationally prominent researcher of atomic physics and quantum mechanics. He’s also keenly interested in the humanities and spirituality.

His fascination with both of those worlds has led him to explore ways to bridge them. He’ll discuss that work when he presents “Science & Spirituality: Breaking Common Cognitive Ground,a lecture to be held at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 1 in Gates Common Room, third floor of Palmer Hall, 1025 N. Cascade Ave., at Colorado College.

Zajonc is the author and editor of several books, including "The Quantum Challenge: Modern Research on the Foundations of Quantum Mechanics" and "Catching the Light: The Entwined History of Light and Mind."

Long interested in bridging the disciplines of the sciences and the humanities, Zajonc has been integrally involved in the Mind and Life Dialogues that have brought together Western specialists in various sciences with the Dalai Lama and other contemplatives.

In 1997 he served as scientific coordinator for the Mind and Life dialogue with the Dalai Lama and co-edited “The New Physics and Cosmology: Dialogues with the Dalai Lama” (Oxford 2004). He organized the 2002 dialogue with the Dalai Lama, “The Nature of Matter, the Nature of Life,” and acted as moderator at Massachusetts Institute of Technology for the “Investigating the Mind” dialogue in 2003 (www.mindandlife.org). Zajonc currently directs the Academic Program of the Center for Contemplative Mind, which supports appropriate inclusion of contemplative practice in higher education. He also co-edited “The Dalai Lama at MIT.”

Zajonc is a professor of physics at Amherst College, where he has taught since 1978. He received his B.S. and Ph.D. in physics from the University of Michigan. He has been visiting professor and research scientist at the Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris, the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics, and the universities of Rochester and Hannover. He has been Fulbright professor at the University of Innsbruck in Austria.

His research has included studies in parity violation in atoms, the experimental foundations of quantum physics, and the relationship between sciences, the humanities and contemplation. He has written extensively on Goethe’s science. He has also been general secretary of the Anthroposophical Society in America (1994-2002), co-founder of the Kira Institute (www.kira.org), president of the Lindisfarne Association, and a senior program director at the Fetzer Institute. He is currently writing a book on the peace work of 12 Nobel peace laureates.

Zajonc's talk is the first in a newly endowed lecture series at Colorado College on science and spirituality. The series will present a talk every year by a distinguished scholar involved in interdisciplinary work in these areas. The lecture series is sponsored by Irma Johnson and William Budington.

The event is free and open to the public. For information, directions or disability accommodation, members of the public may call (719) 389-6607.

About Colorado College
Colorado College is a nationally prominent, four-year liberal arts and sciences college that was founded in Colorado Springs in 1874. The college operates on the innovative Block Plan, in which its 1,945 students study one course at a time in intensive 3½-week blocks. For more information, visit www.ColoradoCollege.edu <http://www.ColoradoCollege.edu>.