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NY Times: Cosmologists Have Lost Their Brains

first_imgNaked brains floating in space, disconnected from reality – this describes the minds of some modern cosmologists, accused Dennis Overbye in a shocking article in the New York Times January 15.  While attempting to be sympathetic to the smart guys who can cover a blackboard with equations about higher dimensions, it was clear he was about to call these guys nuts.  His title: “Big brain theory: have cosmologists lost theirs?”    Some of the ideas being seriously proposed by cosmologists include: disconnected observers in space (of which you might be one, imagining you really are here on Earth); universes bubbling off in all directions all the time; universes that make observers in a snap; reincarnation; and the possibility of a quantum fluctuation leading to a bang that would destroy us and the universe in a flash.    If Bob Berman already thought cosmologists were clueless (see 09/29/2007, 10/06/2004), this article would surely push him over the edge.  Overbye himself said, “If you are inclined to skepticism this debate might seem like further evidence that cosmologists, who gave us dark matter, dark energy and speak with apparent aplomb about gazillions of parallel universes, have finally lost their minds.”    Yet the article describes the opinions of leaders in the field: Alan Guth, Andrei Linde, Leonard Susskind, Lisa Dyson, and others, who debate their paradoxes and imaginative scenarios in all seriousness, run impressive calculations, and deduce alternate realities that could not be scientifically tested even in principle.  If skepticism was the key to the Age of Reason, has the time come to turn skepticism against the skeptics?    Those curious about what possible rationale any scientist could defend for such notions as brains floating in space in bubbling universes where time runs backward can dig into the article for its discussion of the Boltzmann paradox, quantum radiation, dark energy and other quasi-rational or quasi-realistic elements of their tales.  One will look hard for any baby of observable science, however, in the metaphysical bathwater (cf. 02/18/2007).    After centuries of the Age of Reason, attempting to describe nature in rational terms, it would seem natural philosophers (now called scientists) have created a new metaphysics more speculative than ever.  Have the boundaries of science and reason been left far behind?  Has any accountability to evidence been jettisoned?  Linde, after discussing the possibility of reincarnation in modern cosmological speculations, says, “People are not prepared for this discussion.”  One wonders who can claim to be on the right side of the looking glass.Linde, who just happens to be a Hindu, just happened to find a way to make reincarnation a part of “science” – not that one’s religion should in any way be used to critique one’s adherence to the rules of science now, Ms Scott.  Those rules, of course, no longer require empirical evidence.  Anything goes – even Eastern mysticism – so long as one is not a creationist.    Evolutionists used to ridicule creationists with a silly what-if question: “If there is a God, how do you know he didn’t create the world just five minutes ago, complete with our memories of past lives?”  They also ridiculed the Biblical statement that God will roll up the universe like a scroll in the last days.  Read the NY Times article; we rest our case.  You will never find anything in the Bible nuttier than this.    Ten years ago it seemed that creationists were on the defensive.  Bible-believing Christians seemed to have a lot of explaining to do: the light-distance problem, apparent age, etc.  Now it seems that the only ones with their brains still inside their skulls are those who believe Genesis 1:1.    This article is another reason we suggested some of these cosmologists take up truck driving (02/21/2005, 11/07/2007).  It was a very charitable suggestion, for them and their students – and for reporters like Overbye who are apparently disturbed about what has become of science.  Apparently they have lost it.  Cosmology has imploded.  The Enlightenment is dead.  The only hope is an escape to reality.  A little fresh air, some country scenery, some exercise, wouldn’t that be a good rehab after too much academia?  At the motel, you might pull out that book in the dresser.    Ask yourself if this 300-year quest to explain the world by human reason instead of revelation has worked.  It is indeed possible that all the technology and convenience of modern civilization would have developed anyway, because most of the productive (not merely speculative) nature philosophers and scientists were Christians (see online book).  Other great civilizations took technology to impressive lengths without Enlightenment assumptions (i.e., that man is emerging from the Dark Ages of belief into the Age of Reason).  You now see the comic conclusion of rational man’s theater of the absurd (11/29/2004).  Here is where reasoning out of the human imagination alone has led (01/17/2007 commentary).    Does anyone envy these people?  (Apart from the salaries they make at ivy-league institutions without having to work, that is.)  Have they developed anything to help you live, to improve your marriage, your relationships, your goals and aspirations, and your mental health?  Are you more physically fit and morally upright after dreaming about bubbling universes, dark matter, dark energy, dark everything, chaotic fluctuations that go bang in the night, and floating brains?  Maybe God lets man go as far as he can on his own to make His point.  A godly grandmother praying for a prodigal child seems to have more of a grip on the Age of Reason than these poor, pathetic souls who wander in the dark and think they are the wise ones.  Without apologies for repeating a trite Christmas card slogan, wise men still seek Him. (Visited 17 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

AMU students protest ‘police inaction’

first_imgAligarh Muslim University students sat on an indefinite dharna on Thursday protesting the “police inaction” against the vandalism carried out by members of some right-wing organisations on the university campus on Wednesday.AMU Students’ Union president Mashkoor Ahmad Usmani told The Hindu that the students are demanding a judicial inquiry and arrest of activists of right-wing groups who allegedly barged into the university campus and thrashed students and security guards when they tried to stop them from breaking law.Over 30 AMU students and many police personnel were injured in the violence which started with the right-wing protesters demanding removal of the portrait of Mohammad Ali Jinnah from the office of the AMU students’ union and in the subsequent confrontation between the students and the police.Reacting to the incidents of violence, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said that the “act of honouring the man who was responsible for the Partition of the country will never be tolerated”. He said that he has asked for a report from the district administration. ADG, Agra Zone, Ajay Anand has reached Aligarh and held a meeting with the IG, SSP and SP City over law and order in Aligarh.AMU has strongly condemned “the trespassing of university boundary and raising of objectionable and intimidating slogans by a group of Hindu Yuva Vahini youths”. It has asked the district administration to take strict action against the youths who disturbed the peace of the campus.The Aligarh police, meanwhile, have registered two FIRs. “One FIR is against over 300 unnamed AMU students and five AMUSU members,” said Javed Khan, the in-charge of Civil Lines police station.“The second FIR has been lodged against 22 unnamed people by the AMU security authorities under various sections,” he added.last_img read more

India vs New Zealand 1st Test: New Zealand end Day 3 on 331 for 5

first_imgNew Zealand were 331 for five in their first innings, in reply to India’s 487, at stumps on day three of the first cricket Test at Sardar Patel Stadium here on Saturday.Brief scores:India 1st innings : 487New Zealand 1st innings: 331 for five in 117.3 overs (Jesse Ryder 103, Kane Williamson batting 87, Ross Taylor 56, Brendon McCullum 65; Pragyan Ojha 2/80).In their innings yesterday, India scored 487 in the first innings with a career best knock of 69 by off-spinner Harbhajan Singh. NZ spinners Daniel Vettori, playing his 100th test, and Jeetan Patel shared seven wickets each.”I thought the New Zealand bowlers bowled very well,” Harbhajan said. “They are a good side and it will take some effort from us to win this match. Thankfully, we have enough runs on the board.”In the morning session, Patel took the important wickets of VVS Laxman and Sachin Tendulkar as India scored only 63 runs in 30.2 overs on a slow pitch not conducive for stroke-play.Laxman and Tendulkar made 40 apiece in a partnership of 66 for the fourth wicket, but the pair took its time, adding just 29 runs in the first hour.Tendulkar, 13 overnight, was unable to keep the scoreboard ticking as Vettori employed a short mid-wicket and short extra cover to prevent singles.Tendulkar departed when he tried to break the shackles, advancing down the pitch to a Patel delivery, but delivering an easy chest-high return catch. Tendulkar faced 133 deliveries and hit five fours.”I am happy with our effort because this is not a spin track and the ball is only keeping low,” said Patel. “I am particularly happy to have dismissed Tendulkar as it is probably the biggest wicket of my career.”advertisementLaxman, 7 overnight, was trapped lbw at the stroke of lunch.Left-hander Suresh Raina fell for 3 as he failed to judge the pace of the ball and gave an easy catch to McCullum at short cover off Kane Williamson in the other wicket to fall in the morning session.Mahendra Singh Dhoni (10) and Zaheer Khan (1) did not do much in the second session, leaving Harbhajan and Pragyan Ojha to unexpectedly boost their side in a 66-run stand for the ninth wicket.Harbhajan, whose previous highest score was 66 against Zimbabwe at Bulawayo in 2001, hit five fours and three sixes.”The pitch is very slow and I am happy to have got runs when they mattered,” said Harbhajan. “But my job (of taking wickets) is still left and this is just a bonus.”He didn’t take a wicket in his first five overs, but seamer Zaheer removed opener Tim McIntosh for a duck, and left-arm spinner Ojha bowled BJ Watling for 6.- With inputs from APlast_img read more