Biocurious is a weblog about biology, quantified.

Briefly Consider the Universe

by Andre on 4 April 2007

I’ve been meaning to write a review of Carl Sagan’s recently released Gifford Lectures, The Varieties of Scientific Experience, but I just haven’t gotten around to it. Briefly: it’s not as polished as his other books, being a lecture transcript, but it still has some nice ideas and is worth reading. I spent a lot of the time while I was reading it wishing he was still alive to take part in the ongoing highly publicized discussions of religion. Sagan was uncompromising in his atheism and argued persuasively, but he was also a diplomat. He invites the audience to marvel at the grandeur of the universe that science has revealed to us, but wonders why it’s not more evident in our Holy books.

...a general problem with much of Western theology in my view is that the God portrayed is too small. It is a god of a tiny world and not of a galaxy, much less of a universe.

I think Sagan would have appreciated this simple illustration:

(Via onegoodmove)



  1. Pierre    2818 days ago    #

    I also like this one http://video.google.co.uk/videoplay?docid=-3974466981713172831 and this one: http://video.google.co.uk/videoplay?docid=1172643527768412929

    Pierre


  2. Andre    2818 days ago    #

    Thanks, Pierre, I also like those. If you’re interested, you can also watch what looks like a nice BBC documentary on google video (I’ve only seen the first episode, but it at least was good):

    http://tinyurl.com/2jme6l

    You can find the others in the side bar or by searching for “bbc sam neill” (without the quotes).


  3. PonderingFool    2816 days ago    #

    Very cool! Also cool to go the opposite direction from earth to subatomic. Very important for biochemists to realize.


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