Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A Universe From Nothing?

Lawrence Krauss' new book hit the shelves a couple of weeks ago: A Universe from Nothing: Why There Is Something Rather than Nothing

Although I'm totally sure, I think I read something in the preview which indicates that he is not simply arguing that the universe emerged from empty space (which is a common philosophical mistake made by scientists; they say "nothing" when they mean "empty space" even though empty space is certainly something!). Rather, he's going to argue that the universe came from literally and absolutely nothing.

Incidentally, a couple of years ago I emailed him about getting a universe from nothing. I said that quantum fluctuations that create energy and particles occur in empty space, and hence are not out of nothing. He responded that empty space itself can come about through a quantum fluctuation. So this should be an important and interesting read on the issue. Here are some other titles I'm looking forward to:

Free Will by Sam Harris

Did Jesus Exist? by Bart Ehrman

Proving History: Bayes's Theorem and the Quest for the Historical Jesus Richard Carrier

The Amazing Colossal Apostle: The Search for the Historical Paul Robert M. Price

I've also got a few books that are old titles but that I'm interested to read and will hopefully get to in the next few months:

Why There Is Something Rather than Nothing

Evidence and Evolution: The Logic Behind the Science

Hume's Abject Failure: The Argument Against Miracles

A Defense of Hume on Miracles (Princeton Monographs in Philosophy)

So that's it. Hopefully my next book will be killer because of all the stuff I've read!


RBH said...

Krauss' book is an expansion and elaboration of this talk he gave a couple of years ago. Both are worth the time and the money, in the case of the book--I got it for my Nook.

AIGBusted said...

Thanks RBH. As I was reading a preview of the book, I noticed that Krauss confirmed what I wrote here (that spacetime can appear spontaneously) and I also noticed that he said later in the book he would talk about how the laws of the universe could come from nothing. So I'm really looking forward to the book, I will learn a lot from it.

AIGBusted said...
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Unknown said...

Ehrman's Did Jesus Exist? sounds like a good read. He seems pretty convinced and I respect him a lot.
I also love that you're taking on Answers in Genesis. I wrote an article about the Ark Encounter I thought you would enjoy.


I am spreading the word on my new blog Bible Funmentionables, a skeptical look at all of the wildest Bible verses that always get left behind. I'd love it if you are able to check it out and feel free to repost or spread the word in any other way. Thanks so much.

Unknown said...

Sorry if I posted my comment too many times. Word Verification kept saying it was unsuccessful.