The World Within the World
"The supreme task of the physicist," Einstein said, "is to arrive at those universal elementary laws from which the cosmos can be built up by pure deduction." In The World Within the World, eminent astronomer John Barrow offers a thought-provoking examination of the premise behind Einstein's remark. Are there really laws of Nature that exist independently of human thought? Is it possible to discover a Grand Unification Theory? Indeed, is it possible that there aren't really any laws of Nature at all?
___Barrow is eminently qualified to address these questions. Highly regarded both as scientist and philosopher of science, he co-wrote (with Frank J. Tipler) The Anthropic Cosmological Principle, which was acclaimed by a wide array of reviewers, including Sky & Telescope ("fascinating...a tour de force"), Science ("a marvelous treasure trove"), American Scientist ("[an] impressive work on the philosophical issues of modern cosmology"), and The New York Times ("a book that impels the reader to think"). Here he offers a wide-ranging study of the evolving concept of laws of Nature--from the magical notions of primitive cultures, to the ideas of Plato, Aristotle, Newton, and Darwin, to the recent work of Einstein and Dirac.
___The World Within the World is the first serious attempt to address the philosophical and theological problems raised by modern physics and mathematics. It goes well beyond the familiar ground of relativity and quantum theory to consider the latest ideas about chaos, black holes, and superstrings. As did his previous book, it will generate considerable debate among scientists, philosophers, and theologians, as well as among general readers curious about the world and how we understand it.
Inner space and outer space
Why are the laws of Nature mathematical?
Are there any laws of Nature?