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The Mind of God: The Scientific Basis for a Rational World

Image of The Mind of God: The Scientific Basis for a Rational World
Book Number: 
105
Date Fred Read: 
May 2005
Fred's Rating: 
5
Author: 
Paul Davies
Total Pages: 
232
Publisher: 
Simon & Schuster
Year: 
1993

In his quest for an ultimate explanation (for why the universe exists), Paul Davies reexamines the great questions that preoccupied humankind for millennia. In so doing he explores, among other topics, its origin and evolution, the nature of life, and consciousness. See book 104 for info about Davies. (For his books I've read, click on his name.)

Charting the ways in which theories of such scientists as Newton, Einstein, and more recently Stephen Hawking and Richard Feynman have altered our conception of the physical universe, Davies puts these scientists’ discoveries into context with the writings of philosophers such as Plato, Descartes, Hume, and Kant. His startling conclusion is that the universe is ‘no minor byproduct of mindless, purposeless forces. We are truly meant to be here.’ By the means of science, we can truly see into the mind of God. (But only partially into it, by my worldview.)

The last sentences need to be clarified. I’ll use Paul Davies’ own words: “Is there a route to knowledge – even ‘ultimate knowledge’ that lies outside the road of rational scientific inquiry and logical reasoning? Many people claim there is. It is called mysticism.” ...“My own feeling is that the scientific method should be pursued as far as it possibly can. Mysticism is no substitute for scientific inquiry and logical reasoning so long as this approach is consistently applied. It is only in dealing with ultimate questions that science and logic fail us. I am not saying that science and logic are likely to provide the wrong answers, but they may be incapable of addressing the sort of ‘why’ (as opposed to ‘how’) questions we want to ask.” “Perhaps the mystical path is a way to such an understanding.” ...“I cannot believe that our existence in this universe is a mere quirk of fate, an accident of history, an incidental blip in the great cosmic drama.” ...“Through conscious beings the universe has generated self-awareness. This can be no trivial detail, no minor byproduct of mindless, purposeless forces. We are truly meant to be here.”

For the details of his coverage in this book, I strongly recommend that you go to this book's Amazon.com website:

http://www.amazon.com/Mind-God-Scientific-Basis-Rational/dp/0671797182/r...

and use the option 'Click to LOOK INSIDE' to look over the book's Table of Contents, in which for each chapter he also lists its sections (ranging from 4 to 10), so that the systematic and thorough manner in which this book is written will be readily apparent to you.

As for “we can truly see into the mind of God,” Davies meant the following: “The central theme that I have explored in this book is that, through science, we human beings are able to grasp at least some of nature’s secrets. We have cracked part of the cosmic code.” Much is explained by science in this book, but not all. I recommend reading 104 before 105. I had initially rated this book at four stars, but, upon subsequent reading of parts of it, I have upgraded it to a five-star rating.

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