On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself
Author: Sean Carroll
*INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER* "Vivid . . . impressive. . . . Splendidly informative."—The New York Times "Suceeds spectacularly."—Science "A tour de force."—Salon Already internationally acclaimed for his elegant, lucid writing on the most challenging notions in modern physics, Sean Carroll is emerging as one of the greatest humanist thinkers of his generation as he brings his extraordinary intellect to bear not only on Higgs bosons and extra dimensions but now also on our deepest personal questions: Where are we? Who are we? Are our emotions, our beliefs, and our hopes and dreams ultimately meaningless out there in the void? Do human purpose and meaning fit into a scientific worldview? In short chapters filled with intriguing historical anecdotes, personal asides, and rigorous exposition, readers learn the difference between how the world works at the quantum level, the cosmic level, and the human level—and then how each connects to the other. Carroll's presentation of the principles that have guided the scientific revolution from Darwin and Einstein to the origins of life, consciousness, and the universe is dazzlingly unique. Carroll shows how an avalanche of discoveries in the past few hundred years has changed our world and what really matters to us. Our lives are dwarfed like never before by the immensity of space and time, but they are redeemed by our capacity to comprehend it and give it meaning. The Big Picture is an unprecedented scientific worldview, a tour de force that will sit on shelves alongside the works of Stephen Hawking, Carl Sagan, Daniel Dennett, and E. O. Wilson for years to come. From the Hardcover edition.
Author: Sean Carroll
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Where are we? Who are we? Do our beliefs, hopes and dreams mean anything out there in the void? Can human purpose and meaning ever fit into a scientific worldview? Acclaimed award-winning author Sean Carroll brings his extraordinary intellect to bear on the realms of knowledge, the laws of nature and the most profound questions about life, death and our place in it all. In a dazzlingly unique presentation, Carroll takes us through the scientific revolution’s avalanche of discoveries, from Darwin and Einstein to the origins of life, consciousness and the universe itself. Delving into the way the world works at the quantum, cosmic and human levels, he reveals how human values relate to scientific reality. An extraordinary synthesis of cosmos-sprawling science and profound thought, The Big Picture is Carroll’s quest to explain our world. Destined to sit alongside the works of our greatest thinkers, from Stephen Hawking and Carl Sagan to Daniel Dennett and E. O. Wilson, this book shows that while our lives may be forever dwarfed by the immensity of the universe, they can be redeemed by our capacity to comprehend it and give it meaning.
On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself
Author: Sean Carroll,Sean M. Carroll
"The award-winning Caltech physicist and author of The Particle at the End of the Universe shares sweeping perspectives into how human purpose and meaning naturally fit into a scientific worldview,"--Amazon.com.
Author: Sean Carroll
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Twenty years after Stephen Hawking's 9-million-copy selling A Brief History of Time, pioneering theoretical physicist Sean Carroll takes our investigation into the nature of time to the next level. You can't unscramble an egg and you can't remember the future. But what if time doesn't (or didn't!) always go in the same direction? Carroll's paradigm-shifting research suggests that other universes experience time running in the opposite direction to our own. Exploring subjects from entropy and quantum mechanics to time travel and the meaning of life, Carroll presents a dazzling new view of how we came to exist.
How the Hunt for the Higgs Boson Leads Us to the Edge of a New World
Author: Sean M. Carroll
Publisher: Dutton Adult
Examines the effort to discover the Higgs boson particle by tracing the development and use of the Large Hadron Collider and how its findings are dramatically shaping scientific understandings while enabling world-changing innovations.
The Quest to Find the True Age of the Universe and the Theory of Everything
Author: John Gribbin
Publisher: Yale University Press
The twentieth century gave us two great theories of physics. The general theory of relativity describes the behavior of very large things, and quantum theory the behavior of very small things. In this landmark book, John Gribbin—one of the best-known science writers of the past thirty years—presents his own version of the Holy Grail of physics, the search that has been going on for decades to find a unified “Theory of Everything” that combines these ideas into one mathematical package, a single equation that could be printed on a T-shirt, containing the answer to life, the Universe, and everything. With his inimitable mixture of science, history, and biography, Gribbin shows how—despite skepticism among many physicists—these two great theories are very compatible, and point to a deep truth about the nature of our existence. The answer lies, intriguingly, with the age of the universe: 13.8 billion years.
How Life and Consciousness Are the Keys to Understanding the True Nature of the Universe
Author: Robert Lanza,Bob Berman
Publisher: BenBella Books
Building on quantum physics, Biocentrism turns the planet upside down with the revolutionary view that life creates the universe rather than the other way around. The central claim of Biocentrism is that what is referred to as space and time are forms of animal perception rather than external physical objects. Lanza and Berman take readers on a fascinating journey through a foreign universe - our own - that will alter their perception of reality for ever.
Why There Is Something Rather than Nothing
Author: Lawrence M. Krauss
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Bestselling author and acclaimed physicist Lawrence Krauss offers a paradigm-shifting view of how everything that exists came to be in the first place. “Where did the universe come from? What was there before it? What will the future bring? And finally, why is there something rather than nothing?” One of the few prominent scientists today to have crossed the chasm between science and popular culture, Krauss describes the staggeringly beautiful experimental observations and mind-bending new theories that demonstrate not only can something arise from nothing, something will always arise from nothing. With a new preface about the significance of the discovery of the Higgs particle, A Universe from Nothing uses Krauss’s characteristic wry humor and wonderfully clear explanations to take us back to the beginning of the beginning, presenting the most recent evidence for how our universe evolved—and the implications for how it’s going to end. Provocative, challenging, and delightfully readable, this is a game-changing look at the most basic underpinning of existence and a powerful antidote to outmoded philosophical, religious, and scientific thinking.
The Science That Runs Our Universe and the Story Behind It
Author: Scott Bembenek
Energy, Entropy, Atoms, and Quantum Mechanics form the very foundation of our universe. But how do they govern the world we live in? What was the difficult path to their discovery? Who were the key players that struggled to shape our current understanding? "The Cosmic Machine" takes you from the earliest scientific inquiries in human history on an exciting journey in search of the answers to these questions. In telling this fascinating story of science, the author Scott Bembenek masterfully guides you through the wonderment of how scientific discoveries (and the key players of those discoveries) shaped the world as we know it today. With its unique blend of science, history, and biographies, "The Cosmic Machine" provides an easily accessible account without sacrificing the actual science itself. Not only will this book engage, enlighten, and entertain you, it will inspire your passion and curiosity for the world around us.
The Quest to Discover How Life Works and Why It Matters
Author: Sean B. Carroll
Publisher: Princeton University Press
How does life work? How does nature produce the right numbers of zebras and lions on the African savanna, or fish in the ocean? How do our bodies produce the right numbers of cells in our organs and bloodstream? In The Serengeti Rules, award-winning biologist and author Sean Carroll tells the stories of the pioneering scientists who sought the answers to such simple yet profoundly important questions, and shows how their discoveries matter for our health and the health of the planet we depend upon. One of the most important revelations about the natural world is that everything is regulated—there are rules that regulate the amount of every molecule in our bodies and rules that govern the numbers of every animal and plant in the wild. And the most surprising revelation about the rules that regulate life at such different scales is that they are remarkably similar—there is a common underlying logic of life. Carroll recounts how our deep knowledge of the rules and logic of the human body has spurred the advent of revolutionary life-saving medicines, and makes the compelling case that it is now time to use the Serengeti Rules to heal our ailing planet. A bold and inspiring synthesis by one of our most accomplished biologists and gifted storytellers, The Serengeti Rules is the first book to illuminate how life works at vastly different scales. Read it and you will never look at the world the same way again.
Author: Stephen M. Barr
Publisher: University of Notre Dame Pess
A considerable amount of public debate and media print has been devoted to the “war between science and religion.” In his accessible and eminently readable new book, Stephen M. Barr demonstrates that what is really at war with religion is not science itself, but a philosophy called scientific materialism. Modern Physics and Ancient Faith argues that the great discoveries of modern physics are more compatible with the central teachings of Christianity and Judaism about God, the cosmos, and the human soul than with the atheistic viewpoint of scientific materialism. Scientific materialism grew out of scientific discoveries made from the time of Copernicus up to the beginning of the twentieth century. These discoveries led many thoughtful people to the conclusion that the universe has no cause or purpose, that the human race is an accidental by-product of blind material forces, and that the ultimate reality is matter itself. Barr contends that the revolutionary discoveries of the twentieth century run counter to this line of thought. He uses five of these discoveries—the Big Bang theory, unified field theories, anthropic coincidences, Gödel’s Theorem in mathematics, and quantum theory—to cast serious doubt on the materialist’s view of the world and to give greater credence to Judeo-Christian claims about God and the universe. Written in clear language, Barr’s rigorous and fair text explains modern physics to general readers without oversimplification. Using the insights of modern physics, he reveals that modern scientific discoveries and religious faith are deeply consonant. Anyone with an interest in science and religion will find Modern Physics and Ancient Faith invaluable.
William Lane Craig and Sean Carroll in Dialogue
Author: William Lane Craig,Sean Carroll
Publisher: Fortress Press
The question of God and cosmology is far from abstract. In fact, the subject raises the deepest questions of human existence: “Why is there something rather than nothing?” Or, to put it more personally, “Why am I here?” Structured as a debate, the 2014 Greer-Heard Forum focused on the issue of God and cosmology and its impact on life and self-understanding. Christian philosopher William Lane Craig and atheist cosmologist Sean Carroll presented their views before a packed crowd of more than nine hundred people. Spirited, civil, and often humorous, the debate highlighted not only their positions, but the full range of possibilities. In this volume, the content of that debate is reprinted and supplemented by a range of reflections by other conference presenters. The purpose of the Greer-Heard Point-Counterpoint Forum is to provide a venue for fair-minded dialogue on subjects of importance in religion and culture. The goal is a respectful exchange of ideas, without compromise.
A Guide to the Unknown Universe
Author: Jorge Cham,Daniel Whiteson
Cham and Whiteson "explore the biggest unknowns in the universe, why these things are still mysteries, and what a lot of smart people are doing to figure out the answers (or at least ask the right questions). While they're at it, they ... demystify many complicated things we do know about, from quarks and neutrinos to gravitational waves and exploding black holes"--Amazon.com.
Author: Richard A. Muller
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
From the celebrated author of the best-selling Physics for Future Presidents comes “a provocative, strongly argued book on the fundamental nature of time” (Lee Smolin). You are reading the word “now” right now. But what does that mean? What makes the ephemeral moment “now” so special? Its enigmatic character has bedeviled philosophers, priests, and modern-day physicists from Augustine to Einstein and beyond. Einstein showed that the flow of time is affected by both velocity and gravity, yet he despaired at his failure to explain the meaning of “now.” Equally puzzling: why does time flow? Some physicists have given up trying to understand, and call the flow of time an illusion, but the eminent experimentalist physicist Richard A. Muller protests. He says physics should explain reality, not deny it. In Now, Muller does more than poke holes in past ideas; he crafts his own revolutionary theory, one that makes testable predictions. He begins by laying out—with the refreshing clarity that made Physics for Future Presidents so successful—a firm and remarkably clear explanation of the physics building blocks of his theory: relativity, entropy, entanglement, antimatter, and the Big Bang. With the stage then set, he reveals a startling way forward. Muller’s monumental work will spark major debate about the most fundamental assumptions of our universe, and may crack one of physics’s longest-standing enigmas.
The Quest to Create New Universes
Author: Zeeya Merali
Publisher: Basic Books
An award-winning science writer takes us into the lab to answer some of life's biggest questions: How was the universe created? And could we create our own? What if you could become God, with the ability to build a whole new universe? As startling as it sounds, modern physics suggests that within the next two decades, scientists may be able to perform this seemingly divine feat-to concoct an entirely new baby universe, complete with its own physical laws, star systems, galaxies, and even intelligent life. A Big Bang in a Little Room takes the reader on a journey through the history of cosmology and unravels-particle by particle, theory by theory, and experiment by experiment-the ideas behind this provocative claim made by some of the most respected physicists alive today. Beyond simply explaining the science, A Big Bang in a Little Room also tells the story of the people who have been laboring for more than thirty years to make this seemingly impossible dream a reality. What has driven them to continue on what would seem, at first glance, to be a quixotic quest? This mind-boggling book reveals that we can nurse other worlds in the tiny confines of a lab, raising a daunting prospect: Was our universe, too, brought into existence by a daring creator?
Author: Bill Mesler,H. James Cleaves
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
The epic story of the scientists through the ages who have sought answers to life’s biggest mystery: How did it begin? In this essential and illuminating history of Western science, Bill Mesler and H. James Cleaves II seek to answer the most crucial question in science: How did life begin? They trace the trials and triumphs of the iconoclastic scientists who have sought to solve the mystery, from Darwin’s theory of evolution to Crick and Watson’s unveiling of DNA. This fascinating exploration not only examines the origin-of-life question, but also interrogates the very nature of scientific discovery and objectivity.
A Natural Philosopher's Quest for Trout and the Meaning of Everything
Author: Marcelo Gleiser
Publisher: University Press of New England
Marcelo Gleiser has had a passion for science and fishing since he was a boy growing up on the beaches of Rio de Janeiro. Now a world-famous theoretical physicist with hundreds of scientific articles and several books of popular science to his credit, he felt it was time to connect with nature in less theoretical ways. After seeing a fly-fishing class on the Dartmouth College green, he decided to learn to fly-fish, a hobby, he says, that teaches humility. In The Simple Beauty of the Unexpected, Gleiser travels the world to scientific conferences, fishing wherever he goes. At each stop, he ponders how in the myriad ways physics informs the act of fishing; how, in its turn, fishing serves as a lens into nature's inner workings; and how science engages with questions of meaning and spirituality, inspiring a sense of mystery and awe of the not yet known. Personal and engaging, The Simple Beauty of the Unexpected is a scientist's tribute to nature, an affirmation of humanity's deep connection with and debt to Earth, and an exploration of the meaning of existence, from atom to trout to cosmos.
Author: Charles Sean Carroll
Publisher: Wordtech Communications
Caught Looking by Charles Sean Carroll is a chapbook volume of both narrative and lyrical poetry that offers a broad view of the human condition through the lens of our national pastime. The work is divided into three sections correspondent to the seasons in which the game of baseball is played-- spring, summer, and fall; the poems themselves represent a gradual shift from early themes of innocence and nostalgia to the more realistic--and often disillusioning-facets of experience.
Author: Dean Buonomano
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
A leading neuroscientist embarks on a groundbreaking exploration of how time works inside the brain. In Your Brain Is a Time Machine, brain researcher and best-selling author Dean Buonomano draws on evolutionary biology, physics, and philosophy to present his influential theory of how we tell, and perceive, time. The human brain, he argues, is a complex system that not only tells time but creates it; it constructs our sense of chronological flow and enables “mental time travel”—simulations of future and past events. These functions are essential not only to our daily lives but to the evolution of the human race: without the ability to anticipate the future, mankind would never have crafted tools or invented agriculture. The brain was designed to navigate our continuously changing world by predicting what will happen and when. Buonomano combines neuroscience expertise with a far-ranging, multidisciplinary approach. With engaging style, he illuminates such concepts as consciousness, spacetime, and relativity while addressing profound questions that have long occupied scientists and philosophers alike: What is time? Is our sense of time’s passage an illusion? Does free will exist, or is the future predetermined? In pursuing the answers, Buonomano reveals as much about the fascinating architecture of the human brain as he does about the intricacies of time itself. This virtuosic work of popular science leads to an astonishing realization: your brain is, at its core, a time machine.