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The Holographic Universe Paperback – May 6, 1992

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Author Talbot writes that ". . . there is evidence to suggest that our world and everything in it. . . are also only ghostly images, projections from a level of reality so beyond our own it is literally beyond both space and time." Hence, the title of his book. Beginning with the work of physicist David Bohm and neurophysiologist Karl Pribram, both of whom independently arrived at holographic theories or models of the universe, Talbot explains in clear terms the theory and physics of holography and its application, both in science and in explanation of the paranormal and psychic. His theory of reality accommodates this latest thinking in physics as well as many unresolved mind-body questions. This well-written and fascinating study is recommended for science collections.
- Hilary D. Burton, Lawrence Livermore National Lab., Livermore, Cal.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"A wake-up call to wonder, an adventure in ideas." -- Larry Dossey, M.D., author of Space, Time & Medicine

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 338 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (May 6, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060922583
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060922580
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (488 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #163,808 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Michael Talbot was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1953. As a young man, he moved to New York City, where he pursued a career as a freelance writer, publishing articles in Omni, The Village Voice, and others, often exploring the confluence between science and the spiritual.

Talbot published his first novel, The Delicate Dependency: A Novel of the Vampire Life as an Avon paperback original in 1982; recently republished by Valancourt Books, it is regarded a classic of the genre, frequently appearing on lists of the best vampire novels ever written, and secondhand copies have long been expensive and hard to find. His other horror titles, both cult classics, are The Bog (1986) and Night Things (1988).

But despite the popularity of his fiction among horror fans, it was for his nonfiction that Talbot was best known, much of it focusing on new age concepts, mysticism, and the paranormal. Arguably his most famous and most significant is The Holographic Universe (1991), which examines the increasingly accepted theory that the entire universe is a hologram; the book remains in print and highly discussed today.

Michael Talbot died of leukemia in 1992 at age 38.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1,073 of 1,092 people found the following review helpful By Damian Nash on January 8, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is one of the most provocative books I have read in years. In the first few chapters Mr. Talbot describes the emerging holographic paradigm in science, drawing on David Bohm's work in quantum physics and Karl Pribam's work in neuroscience. I found both descriptions to be fascinating, and especially enjoyed the historical context for the work of these two seminal thinkers. As a person with a master's degree in neuroscience and chaos/complexity theory, I found a couple of his simplifications misleading, but would give him high marks for his overall comprehension of the conclusions of Pribam and his followers.
The remaining 2/3 of the book is a discussion of how the holographic paradigm may provide a rational basis for interpreting a wide variety of phenomenon located around the fringes of established science. He looks at everything from strange historical "miracles" like stigmata and appearances of the Virgin Mary to modern psychic abilities and LSD experiences, from out-of-body and near-death-experiences to UFO abductions. In addition, he compares language used in the modern scientific discussion of holography with the language used by ancient mystical traditions.
Mr. Talbot's writing style is unusually clear and lucid. All of this makes for a highly engaging book. It kept me up late every night for more than a week. I am a person who has had an OBE/NDE (out-of-body, near-death-experience), and can tell you that his description of such events is an astoundingly accurate portrayal of what I experienced.
I am also a scientist, and know that most of my highly rational, empirical colleages would have trouble accepting a majority of Mr. Talbot's conclusions.
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315 of 329 people found the following review helpful By Cynthia Sue Larson TOP 1000 REVIEWER on January 25, 2001
Format: Paperback
I've read The Holographic Universe often, and have gained new insights into the nature of consciousness and reality from its riches every time. I consider it to be author Michael Talbot's most important work, as well as one of the best books ever written on the subject of so-called paranormal phenomena.

Talbot's fascination for finding scientific explanations for psychic and paranormal activity began when he noticed objects moving inexplicably around him, regardless where he lived. He would sometimes awaken to find socks draped on his houseplants, and occasionally found objects in his apartment that he knew for a fact had been hundreds of miles away. His real-life experiences with such shifts in reality combined with his training in physics led him to explore possible reasons for these and other mysterious happenings.

Talbot begins his book with an excellent introduction to physicist David Bohm's concept of the holographic model of the universe, and combines the physics model with Karl Pribram's work on the holographic model of the brain. The result is a marvelous description of a non-local, interconnected and alive universe that moves in response to our every thought and feeling.

I am very impressed with the clarity with which Talbot presents the concept of a holographic universe and how various paranormal phenomena can be explained within that model. Talbot's discussion is comprehensive, fascinating, clear, and packed with relevant and intriguing stories of paranormal phenomena. Out of body experiences (OBEs), near death experiences (NDEs), auric readings, psychokinesis, acupuncture, X-ray vision, healing, and psychic readings are all described and considered for placement into the holographic model.
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208 of 219 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 2, 2004
Format: Paperback
Talbot has created a great book. The Holographic Universe is a discourse on a new way (paradigm) for viewing life and the Universe, based primarily on revelations from quantum physics. While my copy is over 10 years old, and physics has moved forward a bit since then, most of the material in the book is as revelant today as it was when my copy was published in 1991.
The basic premise of the book concerns the nature of holography, and how the Universe and our existence and experience can be viewed through a holographic model. For those who don't know, a holgram or holograph is a photographic image created by splitting a laser beam and recording interference patterns between the two beams after one has been reflected off the subject to be photographed. It has the remarkable property of containing the entire image on each piece if you cut it or break it into smaller pieces. This idea of the whole contained in each piece is the basis of the Holographic principle. It has been found to be very useful in explaining the behavior of many natural systems, hence the purpose of this book.
Talbot discusses many areas of life, including particle physics and physical health. He quotes and cites authorities like Bohm, Grof, Pribram, and many others too numerous to mention here. The book is an incredible resource for a new view of reality as well as a huge listing of people, books, and research to go into more depth on the subjects covered. It is one of my favorite books, and I have given more than one away as a gift. At one time, I kept two additional copies just to loan out.
My favorite parts of the book are the experiment in mass dreams near the end, and the section starting on page 90 dealing with the placebo effect and Multiple Personality Disorder(MPD).
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