November 21

Earth and Beyond

Wednesday’s Big Idea

Today's Big Idea: Cosmic Thinking

Time was when we felt an enormous amount of existential angst about our diminishing place in the universe. The more science taught us, the smaller we became. 

Today the pendulum is swinging in the opposite direction, as our understanding of life in the universe increases. Intelligent life elsewhere is possible, but humans are extraordinarily rare. This new perspective is not just a pivot away from existential brooding. 

As Nancy Ellen Abrams and Joel R. Primack argue in their book The New Universe and the Human Future: How a Shared Cosmology Could Transform the Worldwe need to use both the uniqueness of our condition along with our knowledge about the inflation of the universe as a model for a stable period of growth and resource use.

 

  1. 1 The Mind of the Cosmos: How Human...
  2. 2 The Ultimate Mystery of the Universe
  3. 3 Banish the Masterpieces!
  4. 4 The Universe Didn't Evolve Simply
   
  1. The Mind of the Cosmos: How Humans Found Our Way Back to the Center of the Universe

    The Mind of the Cosmos: How Humans Found Our Way Back to the Center of the Universe

    The more we learn about the universe, the more we move back to the center again.

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  2. The Ultimate Mystery of the Universe

    The Ultimate Mystery of the Universe

    Stephen Wolfram ponders what a unified theory of the universe might look like.

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  3. Banish the Masterpieces!

    Banish the Masterpieces!

    For almost 2000 years, Western Art has groped about in the darkness, laboring under the Ptolemaic misconception that Earth (and humankind) is at the center of all things. Until now.

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  4. The Universe Didn't Evolve Simply

    The Universe Didn't Evolve Simply

    If one imagined and described the most logically elegant way to construct a universe, the result wouldn't resemble ours.

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