Particle Physics & Cosmology

Particle physics and cosmology


I am a curious soul. You may take that in every possible sense. I am one of those people who is reversed from the normal, and as my friends seem to be growing still and older, I am a silly paradox, to be older and still growing. I have found the most seductive new thinking anywhere, in particle physics and cosmology. It is utterly irresistible! Almost nothing is as you expect, sheer seduction for a thinker, the answer to every preconception! It seems to me, as a psychologist, that physicists are the most intelligent and childish of all scientists, far more flexible of mind and spirit than those brooding and unfortunate souls who are psychologically afflicted. I believe, the reason for this is the preconception upon which physics is based––"Anything can be calculated." A preconception completely devoid of preconception. These guys are the best! Creative and empirically rigorous. To read psychology, is to crave physics––so much psychological writing is all but nonsense, beauty and fancy, an archetypal pose, beauty as confusion, sheer nonsense which feels nice, or often enough, the writing is laden with ridiculous terms which are not related to anatomy or anything else, and is flat out unintelligible. Physics is the real thing. Ahhhhhh… better. Here, we see complex problems made simple, and processes which are endemic to everything… psychology included (Norman, 2013 quantitative).


As a psychologist who has a degree in philosophy, I must confess to being quite partial to the outlook of a rare physicist like Richard Feynman, who demonstrated the perfect sort of balance between these disciplines––a joyous and laughing soul, deeply curious without a trace of the brooding dull heart which beats in the chest of every obsessive philosopher. Feynman will think anything! Then, he will think up an experiment to see if he is full of one thing, or perhaps even something else, like the truth! Creativity which considers anything, and tests to see what impossible thing is true! Fun! Limitless, then, empirical. That is science, and life, properly lived! Feynman teaches a style of thought, not just mathematics, but a way to approach a problem. I doubt if he appreciated or really understood Freud, who has demonstrated to me another style of thought, but… no matter. (Pun intended). Sorry.


So what has particle physics done for me, and what can it do for you? Everything! The worthy thinker is best pleased by one thing: not an argument with which he agrees, and so, believes is genius, as we all do––but something bloodier! The worthy thinker wants but one thing––to be defeated, so he may rise again. Our preconceptions, our egoistic limit, our dull, mature certainty which need not create––for we already know––it is this dull hearted fool which particle physics will murder, and in his place…a child is born! Let us all become as Feynman, if not in mind, in spirit, and then, mind will follow. What do you know? Bunk! You know nothing! Now––we may begin. Only once defeated, may we may begin to learn. So is it with mind, growth, silly happiness and preconception.


I have taken so very much from my autodidactic explorations of particle physics. I am sure to review a host of amazing books and other informational sources, composed and written by the most intelligent and intelligible minds, from Brian Greene, the master of so much knowledge, and a teacher more able than any, and his like, in Steven Pollock, again, an educator who can make clear the most deep complexity––and cosmologists like the incredible Alan Guth, the single most amazing living physicist in the field of cosmology, the man who created the theory of cosmological inflation, which George Smoot, along with a host of others involved in the COBE project have proven as real, evidenced in the patterned distribution of background radiation. There has been real benefit for me as a psychologist, to read these ideas! But, let us not forget, that is in the happiness of unencumbered creative thought and detailed experiment that our joy is found, and distilled. If you wish to challenge yourself and understand the final detailed result of my love of psychology and physics, please read the section on Quantitative Unconscious Theory in this publication, then: The Quantitative Unconscious: A Psychoanalytic Perturbation-Theoretic Approach to the Complexity of Neuronal Systems in the Neuroses. If you want to see the better result, the sheer happiness which comes from thinking without preconception, please read on!


––Rich Norman




Norman, R. (2013). The quantitative unconscious: A psychoanalytic perturbation-theoretic approach to the complexity of neuronal systems in the neuroses. The Black Watch: The Journal of Unconscious Psychology and Self-Psychoanalysis. Retrieved from: