The God Confusion

18 Apr

You know someone is intelligent when they can make me start to understand scientific theories about evolution, quantum physics and life in the universe and beyond.

Then again, I’m sure the intelligence of Richard Dawkins and theoretical physicist, Lawrence Krauss, was never in doubt.

For something a little different, I went along to what was described as ‘a conversation’ with the aforementioned scientists at The Royal Opera House with Pip.

It certainly gave us a lot of food for thought, which was the idea.

Topics discussed ranged from the evolution of the human race (if you accept their theories, we and the kangaroos hopping about in Sydney zoo are all descended from the same fish), the probability of life on other planets, the future of evolution, machines with consciousness and how you get something from nothing. They also discussed miracles and the question: ‘Why do bad things happen?’ I was hoping they’d let us in on some magic equation for life where nothing bad does happen, but unfortunately, not. It will happen. It’s all down to probabilities, apparently.

That’s where it all came as a bit of a disappointment. I suppose as humans, we all want to believe miracles can happen and there’s some meaning to why we didn’t get that job, or a particular relationship didn’t work out, so when you listen to two fundamental atheists, you’ll only come crashing down to their more depressing reality that it’s all just mathematics: Probabilities. I hated statistics at school so maybe that’s why it seemed so mundane.

However, saying that, you did not leave depressed, but more really excited, interested and wanting to know so much more about what’s out there and what possibilities there are. In fact it was one of those evenings that actually made me want to go back to university and start studying physics, or philosophy (but only if it meant sitting around discussing how big the universe is and the origins and meaning of life – none of the boring stuff.) I was also reassured when they told us our brains just aren’t designed to be able to grasp the concepts and scales of time and space involved with the origins of the Earth, life and the universe.

They articulated really well certain points about spirituality and philosophy and talked about science being one of those cultural aspects, which should be appreciated as much as music, art and literature.

 It was a truly thought provoking evening and the format was such that they didn’t lecture, they just discussed the issues and then later invited questions from the audience.

We both left understanding a little more about complex genes, DNA, the conditions required for life and their rational explanations for ‘miraculous’ events.

I like rational and would say I am (usually, unless you try and argue with me.) I think science can explain so much now, which was previously considered miraculous or the work of some higher being, but then it’s always nice to think there’s a little bit of magic out there….

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One Response to “The God Confusion”

  1. Jean April 18, 2012 at 10:02 am #

    Sounds really interesting. xx

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