Penzias on a Meaningful Universe

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3 Responses

  1. Jew Speak says:

    The writer you quote was Robert Jastrow and here is what he said:

    “This is an exceedingly strange development, unexpected by all but the theologians. They have always accepted the word of the Bible: In the beginning God created heaven and earth… [But] for the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; [and] as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”

    – Robert Jastrow
    (God and the Astronomers [New York: W.W. Norton and Co., 1978], 116. Professor Jastrow was the founder of NASA’s Goddard Institute, now director of the Mount Wilson Institute and its observatory.)

    Take care.

    Jew Speak

  2. Barry Simon says:

    I dunno – your boldfaced reason is a pretty weak reed on which to dismiss something. After all the standard line for many years was that only four people in the world understood relativity (never true I suspect) although we now standardly teach special realtivity to freshmen and general realtivity to grad students.

    A more compelling argument is that even string theory itself has no experimental confirmation and is somewhat speculative and random ripple with a false vacuum is regarded as VERY speculative even by string theorists. So while the parallel universe stuff in this (and other forms has had enormous “press”), it lies on a Rube Goldberg house of cards.

  3. Edvallace says:

    Rabbi Adlerstein,

    Appreciate the article. On a side note: One of the things mentioned in Penzias’ words has been the four-dimensional universe. Would you mind providing me references if they’re readily available for understanding that better? I still struggle with it and it impacts how we understand the letter Daled, always acknowledged as the expression of Olam Hazah.

    Thank you,

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