Victor Mansfield, whom I have known for many years, is someone who has reconciled his professional involvement with science with a deep interest in spirituality and Tibetan Buddhism in particular.
He has taught and written widely about both. …He has set out specifically to show how religion and spirituality are compatible with life in the modern world.
I am grateful to him for responding to my appeal for people who have such knowledge to share it with others.
~The Dalai Lama, November 23, 2007
Vic Mansfied was a warm, energetic, and inspiring teacher and mentor to me while I was at Colgate and well beyond. I remember us making boomerangs in his classical mechanics class and going with him to play pool as an illustration of “billiard ball” physics. His thoughts on science, spirituality, and Jungian studies have continued to influence my writing, teaching, and learning to this day, and he is sorely missed.
I was very sad to hear of Vic’s death. He was instrumental to my admission to graduate school at RPI. Thanks to his help I am now a computer science professor who studies computational modeling. His Astronomy 210 course (A course he suggested I take Fall of Freshman year.What a challenge!) was one of the most memorable classes that I took at Colgate. Every time I look to the sky at night I recall what he taught me then.
Vic Mansfield was one of the most influential professors I had. He was brilliant and also respectful of students, somewhat back in the day. The material from his course Jungian Psychology and Modern Physical Concepts stays with me to this day. My work for Students for a Free Tibet would not be happening without me having met him.
I was sad to hear of Vic’s passing. I think it was Vic’s Computational Mechanics class, more than any other experience at Colgate, that led me to choose the career that I enjoy today.
It was a very difficult course, but also a very rewarding and refreshing break from the other “paper and pencil” physics classes. I fondly remember being awakened by the phone one morning after forgetting to set my alarm. After a groggy “Hello”, I heard Vic on the other end asking “Gary? Are you going to join us today?”
Great, great teacher. His classes were always interesting to attend and his passion for physics and life were clear by the way he interacted with his students. I am personally saddened by this loss.
Wow! Thanks for reminding me of the table dive and the screw driver at the final exam.
Vic Mansfield was a great professor; he was both academically rigorous and inspirational. More than any other classes, his are the ones I remember most. It is very sad to hear of the passing of Vic Mansfield. Colgate has lost one of its best.
Reading this stopped me in my tracks today at work. Extremely sad. Thoughts and prayers with his family. By far and away, the professor that was most influencial to me at Colgate, inside and outside of academics. The only Prof. I stayed in touch with after College. Just an amazing person, and absolutely blessed to have known him and learned from him.. not only physics but all aspects of life and spirituality. His books are amazing.
Vic was the best. His sense of humor was amazing and his ability to convey physical insights was unmatched in my experience. I am deeply saddened and extend my sympathies to his family and all who knew and appreciated him.
Not only was Vic Mansfield a great teacher, but he was also very human inside and outside the classroom. In his class on Jungian psychology and physics, one could see that he was thinking deeply about the material as we talked; one time the class was respectfully silent for over a minute as he was ruminating. Not until a classmate held up a pen and let it drop on his desk was the silence broken and we returned to the discussion.
He invited the physics majors out to his home in the country to meet his family and to cross-country ski and savor hot chocolate and cinnamon toast. He became passionately excited when I made strides in physical thinking and then asked thought-provoking questions to which he had no intention of providing the answers, leaving me confused, but more importantly, intrigued.
He was even willing to dive off tables into the arms of students waiting below in order to demonstrate a principle of general relativity. Now that I am a physics professor myself, I truly appreciate the depth of Vic’s commitment to his students. I am grateful to have been one of them.
Vic Mansfield was my physics adviser. We shared several one-on-one discussions in his office, and I will always be grateful for the advice and encouragement he’s given me. Even though I often went in with a physics question, within minutes we’d be talking about Buddhism, spirituality, and life in general. He was a truly deep intellectual, interested in viewing life from multiple perspectives — that type of influence is going to stick with me for the rest of my life.
Vic was a mentor to each student in our Core Tibet class this past Fall semester. We were privileged to have such a wonderful, semester-long experience with him. Our hearts are with his family and friends.
Vic Mansfield was the best teacher I have ever had when I graduated 29 years ago. It surprises me not at all that Ms. Jacobsen reports the same nearly three decades later. He set a standard for which I continue to strive in my own teaching. A funny story about Vic: I had him for Physics 123, Intro to Mechanics. Some of my classmates and I bought a big screwdriver, engraved R x F on the blade (remember the right-hand screw rule in agular momentum?) and gave it to him at the final exam.
Vic Mansfield was the best teacher I have ever had and he truly changed my life. I know I speak for the entire Core Tibet class of Fall 2007 when I say he will be severely missed. It was an honor to learn from him.
Tibetan Buddhism and Modern Physics
Tibetan Buddhism and Modern Physics: Toward a Union of Love and Knowledge addresses the complex issues of dialogue and collaboration between Buddhism and science, revealing connections and differences between the two.
Synchronicity, Science, and Soul-Making
By deftly meshing his interpretation of synchronicity with key concepts in quantum physics and Middle Way Buddhism, Victor Mansfield brings fresh insight to our understanding of synchronicity.
Head and Heart
In plain language, Mansfield explores radio astronomy, the nature of time, relativity, cosmological expansion, and quantum mechanics with personal examples of meditation, dreams and synchronicity to show that spiritual experience offers a fundamentally different window into reality than that given by science. And he tackles these questions: What is invisible matter? Am I merely a complex tangle of atoms and molecules controlled by the laws of physics? What is the nature of soul? How is modern science a form of religion?