Mystery and Awe

“Ever the winds blow; ever the grass grows. Every day, men and women, conversing, beholding and beholden. The scholar is he of all men whom this spectacle most engages.”

The Universe, and Everything

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Jul 042012

“Normal adults don’t stop to think about such concepts as space and time. These are things children ask about. My secret is I remained a child. I always ask the simplest questions. I ask them still.” — Einstein

That quote comes to my mind especially today, reading the headline: “Discovery of New Particle Could Redefine World”

So let us be like children now, just for a moment, and take time to think a bit about time, and space, and everything…

 Posted by at 6:38 pm

The Brink

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Oct 042010

Light and energy, gravity and inertia; these are material mysteries. We cannot explain them. A mystery is not the same as a puzzle. A puzzle can be figured out. A mystery, in the religious sense, cannot. A mystery cannot be figured out, because it defies figuring. We have literally taken lightening out of the sky and made it to sing, yet in a very real sense, we have no real knowledge of it all.

What You Don’t Know that You Don’t Know

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Jan 162010

He sat up a bit, away from the back of the couch, and faced me directly as he spoke this next thought, carefully measuring out his words.

“There is nothing which you now know, and nothing about what you think you don’t know, that will help you create the success you desire.”

He paused for a moment, and continued.

“The key to your success lies only in what you don’t know that you don’t know. Do you understand?”

“No,” I told him truthfully. “I have no idea what you’re saying. How can I know what I don’t even know that I don’t know?”

“You can’t,” he said. “That’s the secret.”

 Posted by at 11:31 am

Heat and Light

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Jan 102010

Now, you may say that this is all metaphorical, to say that this thing is actually another, and you would be absolutely right. Metaphor is exactly that: an expression that equates two seemingly different things. In other words, mathematics. The equations of physics that describe the universe are metaphors that tell us that this equals that. E=MC2 is the mathematical metaphor that tells is that matter IS energy. We know that space is not separate from time, and yet we speak of time as if it flows through space. This is not correct. Neither is it correct to speak of light and radio as if these are two different phenomena. They are not.

 Posted by at 3:32 pm  Tagged with:


 Mystery and Awe, Physics  Comments Off on Fire
Nov 052009

I sought the fount of fire in hollow reed
Hid privily, a measureless resource
For man, and mighty teacher of all arts

… and I purged
The glancing eye of fire, dim before,
And made its meaning plain. These are my works.

What thou wouldst learn I will make clear to thee,
Not weaving subtleties, but simple sooth
Unfolding as the mouth should speak to friends.
I am Prometheus, giver of fire to mortals.

— Aeschylus, Prometheus Unbound

 Posted by at 12:11 pm

A Short History of Nearly Everything

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Oct 042009

The following excerpts are taken from the book, “A Short History of Nearly Everything”. These are truly awesome statements.

Astronomers these days can do the most amazing things. If someone struck a match on the Moon, they could spot the flare.

With their radio telescopes they can capture wisps of radiation so preposterously faint that the TOTAL amount of energy collected from outside the solar system by all of them together since collecting began in 1951 is “less than the energy of a single snowflake striking the ground,” in the words of Carl Sagan.

Collapsing the Wave Function – Quantum Mysteries Solved

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Jun 152009

The one thing you have to always remember is that every interaction in the universe is the result of physical touch. All of our senses are touch. One physical thing touching another. There is no force outside of this. There is only one object touching another object.

Even our sight is nothing more than our experience of the physical objects of the world emitting photons (which are physical particles) which then physically touch and are absorbed by the electrons in our retinas. Even sight is touch.

 Posted by at 6:54 pm