Here are four things that have challenged, informed, and fascinated me lately.
1. Finding God in the Cosmos, from America Magazine (here).
An interview with Vatican astronomer David Brown, S.J. Specializing in stellar evolution, Brown continues the long Church tradition of the study of the stars. This is a great reflection on how science cultivates love and wonder at the work of the Creator’s hands — primarily through beauty. He also touches on the proper relationship between science and faith in revelation.
[My work as a scientist] affirms my faith in God… when I look up into the sky or down at whatever data I have, I’m filled with a profound sense of awe for what God has made: its beauty, its mystery, its order.
2. The Empty Brain, from Aeon Magazine (here).
In this awesome piece, research psychologist Robert Epstein dismantles a prevalent misconception: that the human brain is like a computer. This idea, called the information-processing (IP) model, now dominates scientific and public thinking about cognition. Interestingly, this model assumes that the mind operates on symbolic representations, rather than direct and embodied interactions with reality. But Epstein shows that the metaphor is based in error.
Neuroscientists understand that much of IP language is metaphorical. However, it’s important to consider the ramifications of such language for the non-scientific public.