Consciousness, Language, Archaeology, Autism, Suicide, and Religion

 

Lorenz equation
It’s rather odd, upon reflection, that the universe conforms so wonderfully well to mathematical formulae such as this one.  Incidentally, does anybody out there recognize this particular formula?  (Image from Wikimedia Commons)

 

Two closely related quotations from Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)

 

To understand the Universe, you must understand the language in which it’s written, the language of Mathematics.

 

The laws of nature are written by the hand of God in the language of mathematics.

 

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Utah’s relatively high — and evidently increasing — suicide rate has received considerable attention in recent years.  Here’s something that might help a bit to put Utah’s situation in a wider context:

 

“Suicide rates have shot up in almost every U.S. state: More than half of victims counted in 27 states in 2015 had no known mental health condition”

 

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Is this significant?  Perhaps . . .

 

“Kids with food allergies are twice as likely to have autism: But having the immune abnormalities doesn’t mean a child will develop the disorder”

 

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The problem of consciousness is a huge one.  Some serious thinkers even consider it essentially insoluble.  For an entertaining if slightly longish discussion of one place where it’s regularly discussed, see this:

 

“Has Consciousness Lost Its Mind?  What would Noam Chomsky, Deepak Chopra, a very friendly robot, plus a bevy of scientists, mystics, and wannabe scholars do at a fancy resort in Arizona? Perhaps real harm to the field of consciousness studies, for one thing.”

 

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Slightly related, perhaps.  At least, Noam Chomsky makes an appearance here, as well:

 

“A Sneaky Theory of Where Language Came From: It might have hijacked our early ancestors’ brains.”

 

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Further on the complexity of the problem of the peopling of the Americas:

 

“The Race to Recover South America’s Ancient Past: In the face of development pressure and climate change, researchers are toiling to find and preserve ancient sites in Peru that hold clues to how people first traversed a continent.”

 

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At best very distantly related:

 

“Alpha Centauri system could have favorable conditions for life: X-ray radiation poses no threat to planets orbiting these two nearby Sun-like stars.”

 

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Two quotations from Modern Physics and Ancient Faith, by Stephen M. Barr, a cosmologist and theoretical particle physicist at the University of Delaware:

 

“Science has given us new eyes that allow us to see down to the deeper roots of the world’s structure, and there all we see is order and symmetry of pristine mathematical purity.” 

 

“The universe looks far more orderly to us now than it did to the ancients who appealed to that order as proof of God’s existence.”

 

Posted from Richmond, Virginia

 

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