On learning about the work of Basil Hiley


Basil J. Hiley, Emeritus Professor of Physics, University College,
University of London (UCL), Birkbeck College, Malet St, Bloomsbury,
London WC1E 7HX, United Kingdom

ArticlesTime and the Algebraic Theory of Moments (2013); The Wholeness of Quantum Reality, by George Musser, Scientific American, November 4, 2013)
ArXiv: Dirac, Bohm and the Algebraic Approach (2019)
Books: The Undivided Universe: An Ontological Interpretation of Quantum Theory
Homepage(s): AIP, inSpire-HEP, Wikipedia, YouTube: Quantum Mechanics in Phase Space (2015)

Third email: Monday, 30 January 2023 at 11:15 AM

Dear Prof. Dr. Basil Hiley:

The universe is truly undivided if the first instance of space-time is defined by an infinitesimal sphere which is itself defined by either Planck’s unitsStoney’s units, or yet to be determined ISO units, and by continuity-symmetry-harmony.

Best wishes with the Pari sessions,



PS. Give Guth his inflaton and assume it is this infinitesimal sphere. -BEC

Second email: 19 February 2020 at 10:10 AM

Dear Prof. Basil J. Hiley:

I must tell you that my recent reading of your Feynman-Bohm romp in Brazil was invigorating:

Bohm had developed the first comprehensive alternative to the orthodox Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum mechanics. Building on earlier work by Einstein and Louis de Broglie, Bohm showed that quantum randomness need not be intrinsic to nature. It might simply reflect our bull-in-a-china-shop way of probing the quantum realm. In Bohm’s original formulation, particles always have well-defined positions and are shepherded by a “quantum potential” similar in general spirit to electric and gravitational forces. Because this potential operated instantaneously, linking together everything in the universe no matter how far apart it may be, Bohm later came to think that quantum physics was just the surface view of a radically holistic reality.”

Thank you, thank you.

First email: 17 February 2020

Dear Prof. Basil J. Hiley:

Long ago, I started following David Bohm upon reading Causality & Chance in Modern Physics (Routledge, 1957). Ted Bastin’s Quantum Theory and Beyond (Cambridge, 1971) was a wonderful introduction to everyone, including you!  I don’t know why it has taken me 50 years to write to you to just say, “Thank you.”

Ted Bastin and I became friends. He was a guest in my home for over a week back in the  1970s. I visited with Bohm in London and Bell in Geneva in 1974 and 1977. Bohm gave me a copy of his little treatise, Fragmentation and Wholeness. I was at BU, part of Robert Cohen and Abner Shimony’s group. Through Ted, I also became an irregular with H. Pierre Noyes’ Alternative Natural Philosophy group at Stanford. In 1980 I studied with Vigier at the Institut Henri Poincaré. In 1981, feeling a bit like a whirling dervish, I  dropped out and returned to a business that I had started in 1971.

Something was off with our models.
Renormalization wasn’t the answer.
Newton’s absolute space-and-time… not the answer.
And, everybody ignored Planck’s base units (and still do).  I didn’t.

It took awhile, but in 2011, helping a nephew with his high school geometry classes, we went deeper and deeper inside the tetrahedron (dividing the edges by 2 and connecting the new vertices). In 45 steps, we were within the CERN scale of particle physics; and in 67 additional steps, we were within the Planck scale. There we decided to start with the Planck units, used base-2, and we were back within the classroom scale in 112 steps. We then went out to the age and size of the universe in another 90 steps. Just 202 notations outlined the universe. Although Kees Boeke used base-10 in 1957, it was just a scale of the universe and not the start of a working model. Very early in our discovery process we had an intuition that base-2, simple doublings, was a primary functional activity within physics. Yes, something as simple as cubic close-packing of equal spheres and sphere stacking just might be the start of a possible rapprochement to the old concepts of the æther.

I have spent too much time chasing this simple model of 202 steps. I need expert advice. What do you think? Does it have merit? Can it add anything to the discussion?

These are my primary claims to date.

Thank you.

Most sincerely,


PS. Once I start to study a scholar’s work, I also start my own online notes of the references and resources around that person. Here is the page that I have started for you:   If ever you’d like me to add or subtract from that page, I would be delighted to do so. -BEC

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