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  Topic: Good Books on God and good books on scien, Reading list on a fun topic< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
BWE



Posts: 1896
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 15 2006,07:26   

The big bang thread got me thinking bout all the fun I have reading books that comment on religion and books that comment on science although not usually in the same book, the exeption being "the god gene". I read a lot of super dry science stuff for work and I don't much like it but I very much liked "the tao of Physics" and bill bryson's "a short history of nearly everything", "God's Equation" about Einstein, The age of Scurvy, "Emergence" by steven johnson (i think) and etc.

I listed a bunch of religion books and essays on my blog where it is easier to make links.
http://brainwashedgod.blogspot.com

If you are interested in helping compile a reading list or offering opinions on books mentioned, feel free to comment here or there.

I will make a more comprehensive list soon. I am curious how many people have read the same books and how many people liked the same things.

I think this is relevant to the evo/creo debate because much of the controversy hinges on education and education levels of those involved. I think maybe any ID leaning lurkers might want to know what kinds of books we science leaning folks have been reading and vice versa if at all possible. If nothing else, I hope to get a few good titles to read.
In Mr Christopher's own words:
Quote


Posted: Feb. 14 2006,18:15  
Quote (BWE @ Feb. 14 2006,16:56)
Mr. Christopher, I was inspired to add your comment above to  my blog.

Since I did it without your express permission I give my appologies and editing rights to you if you feel I have misrepresented you.

BWE :)

BWE, I am flattered my comments made an impression on you.  Feel free to quote me anytime.

I think there is some irony here somewhere.  Is there anyone on earth who started doubting their faith only after they read some Darwin or Stevie Gould?  I doubt it.  I think the creationists give Darwin/evolution far too much credit.

Initially I rejected my former faith on pure moral and common sense grounds and it was years later that I would read up on evolution.  Evolution did not provide a foundation for my lack of faith nor did it (or does it) contribute to my current lack of faith.  I think this is probably true for most folks.

Contrary to what the creationists believe the seeds of doubt do not need to be nourished by some biological theory or fact (and anyone who pins their faith on IC and mouse trap analagies is a fool to be sure).  All it takes to lose ones faith is a little common sense and the desire to ask oneself uncomfortable questions.


--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
Stephen Elliott



Posts: 1754
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 15 2006,09:29   

The only book in that post I have read is Bill Bryson's. I liked it also.

Other science books (popular) I have enjoyed are, Stephen Hawking's A Brief History of Time and Brian Greene's The Fabric of the Cosmos and The Elegant Universe

ATM I am reading Life in the Undergrowth by David Atenborough.

EDIT: Aaaaagh!  Just had to re-do all my italics. Originally I had used < > instead of [ ]. Bah!

  
BWE



Posts: 1896
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 15 2006,09:47   

Answer me truthfully, did you stop reading Hawking when he got to imaginary time? I consider myself reasonably intelligent but this is no layman's book. It was just too much work to keep reading and so I stopped.

I forgot to add
Botony of Desire Near the top of my all time favorite list.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
Stephen Elliott



Posts: 1754
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 15 2006,10:15   

Quote (BWE @ Feb. 15 2006,15:47)
Answer me truthfully, did you stop reading Hawking when he got to imaginary time? I consider myself reasonably intelligent but this is no layman's book. It was just too much work to keep reading and so I stopped.

I forgot to add
Botony of Desire Near the top of my all time favorite list.

Nope, I did not stop reading. In fact I read it several times. I still do not claim to understand it though. As far as I can see, Hawking was trying to use imaginary time to stop the Big Bang being a singularity. It works, but only if you do not re-convert imaginary time back to normal time.

EDIT: I could be completely wrong about that though.

  
avocationist



Posts: 173
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 15 2006,10:33   

Stephen,

What are the implications of the Big Bang being a singularity? What really, is the definition of a singularity?

  
BWE



Posts: 1896
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 15 2006,10:40   

PZ Meyers just posted this over at pandas thumb. I wonder... Notice how you never see the two of us in the same place?

However,

Notice that these criteria are for books about science and god. I fixed the link to my blog above but what I want to find are Good Books. Ones you liked and that others may like  about 2 subjects that I enjoy, science and god. I got a science degree but, frankly, the real stuff is usually written by folks who are trying to teach. I like learning as a byproduct of reading but I like to be entertained even more.

So, Here are my god/spirituality books:

Robert ingersol (the author)
Full Text:
http://www.infidels.org/library/historical/robert_ingersoll/

Eric Hoffer's "The True Believer"
Amazon link:
http://www.amazon.com/gp....=283155

Dean Hamer's "The God Gene"
Amazon Link:
http://www.amazon.com/gp....ng=UTF8

Thoreau's "Walden"
Amazon link:
http://www.amazon.com/gp....=283155

William Blake's "The Marrage of Heaven and ####"
Full Text:
http://www.levity.com/alchemy/blake_ma.html

Mark Twain's "Letters From the Earth"
Full text:
http://www.sacred-texts.com/aor/twain/letearth.htm

Philip Wylie's "The Magic Animal"
Amazon Link:
http://www.amazon.com/gp....ng=UTF8

Ken Wilbur's "A Brief History of Everything"
Amazon Link:
http://www.amazon.com/gp....=283155

the 9 insights from
James Redfield's "The Celesine Prophesy"
(Notice I didn't say I enjoyed the book)
Text for the 9 insights:
http://homestar.org/bryannan/celistin.html

I thoroughly enjoyed all of the above.
And I already mentioned the sciency books above although there are at least a dozen more which I will post after I get home and look at my bookshelf.

Salut!

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
Stephen Elliott



Posts: 1754
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 15 2006,10:48   

Quote (avocationist @ Feb. 15 2006,16:33)
Stephen,

What are the implications of the Big Bang being a singularity? What really, is the definition of a singularity?

TBH. You would be better off with an answer from a Physicist.

Only a guess but I think Doc/Prof Hawking considers a Big Bang singularity an embarresment.

  
Henry J



Posts: 4015
Joined: Mar. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 15 2006,11:12   

Roughly, "singularity" means the math fails when some variable gets too close to zero (or whatever the limit value is). Example: As the distance between two charged particles approaches zero, the force between them approaches infinity. (String theory would solve that by spreading the "charge" out along each string rather than stuffing it all into one point.)

Henry

  
BWE



Posts: 1896
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 16 2006,06:52   

Singularities aside, I forgot another one of my favorites:
Carl Sagan's  The Demon Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

I just picked up Brian Green at the library but I have to finish Kite Runner first. Hopefully I wont have to renew Green.

I forgot about fiction too. Precious few fiction works would make this list I think but

City of God By E.L. Doctorow would definitely make the list. OMG it's good. A little "Artsy" in the fashion of maybe Joyce or Hemmingway but truly incredible read.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
Stephen Elliott



Posts: 1754
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 16 2006,22:27   

I might give "City of God" a go in the future.

Yesterday I bought "Christ the Lord out of Egypt" by Anne Rice.
Only had a quick glance so far, but seems OK. Must finish ""A Confederacy of Dunces" first (hopefully today).

  
BWE



Posts: 1896
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 17 2006,05:17   

How is Confederacy of Dunces? I have it on my shelf but haven't picked it up. Got it as a present.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
Stephen Elliott



Posts: 1754
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Feb. 17 2006,07:15   

Quote (BWE @ Feb. 17 2006,11:17)
How is Confederacy of Dunces? I have it on my shelf but haven't picked it up. Got it as a present.

It has got me a few strange glances, I was laughing on the train while reading it.

I bought it (A Confederacy of Dunces), because I noticed it in the bookshop the day after someone posted (on PT) that, Larry Fafarman was like Ignatious J. Reilly.

  
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