Start by marking “Why Does the World Exist? Our best theories predict that all the matter in the universe should have been destroyed as soon as it existed. I haven't argued with a book as much as this one.....ever. Somewhat disappointing, in large part because of its approach, which entails attempting to answer an ontological/metaphysical question by asking analytical philosophers and physical scientists. In this highly original new book, the philosopher Markus Gabriel challenges our notion of what exists and what it means to exist. An Existential Detective Story. An Existential Detective Story. A nice, well written survey of contemporary metaphysics/science, mostly trying to explain "why there is something rather than nothing". It was paining me to get through this to begin with, because at the end of the day, though armed with plenty of jargon and intimidating vocabulary, Jim Holt is a bad writer, plain and simple; when I realized that in this guy's oh-so-noble quest to get to the bottom of no less comprehensive a question than why the world exists, he didn't deem it necessary to interview, cite, consult, credit, or indeed acknowledge a single person who wasn't a white man, I was done. A fine study of the laws of the universe interrogates what, if anything, came before the Big Bang Perhaps all possible universes have existed from the start, including one that contains nothing. "The Basic Question 'Why Does the World Exist?' See the article here: Hard to imagine now, but it’s true. Scientists Studying EDM To Find Why Everything In The Universe Exists Somehow, at the beginning of time, there was an imbalance of matter and antimatter. In this highly original new book, the philosopher Markus Gabriel challenges our notion of what exists and what it means to exist. :An Existential Detective Story, tackles the question that Martin Heidegger characterized as the greatest in all philosophy and William James called the darkest in all philosophy—why is there something rather than nothing? It's also referred to as "parallel universe theory." Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. "Why is There Something Rather Than Nothing?" I mean, this is the super ultimate "why" question? Another complication in the understanding of time is demonstrated by Lee Smolin's 2013 book Time Reborn: From the Crisis in Physics to the Future of the Universe, in which he argues that science does (as the mystics claim) treat time as an illusion. Anyhow, it's fascinating stuff. The second law of thermodynamics, that most existentially resonant of … It does not know who or how. Adam J. For instance: We exist in a “temporally scattered” condition, as he writes in the new book. Even if he were limited to New York City, his home base, there must be a goodly supply of female thinkers in that city alone. Science, Lewis argues, can study the material components of the universe, but it cannot offer an explanation for why the universe exists in the first place. In the new work, The … Or at least I thought it was until I read the book. Jim Holt is a longtime contributor to the, “Having just enough life to enjoy being dead.”, “In 1921, a New York rabbi asked Einstein if he believed in God. Jocaxian's Trains refutes Especial Relativity: Why Does the World Exist? I was hooked as I'm sure most of you reading a review of this book would have been. How can people get away with such partial and idiotic arguments, and how can anyone take them seriously. It's not like there aren't very smart women & non-English or French speaking women & men in the world who might have contributed some interesting thoughts on the subject. 10 mysteries of the universe: Why does anything exist at all? Because the universe also began as a singularity, time itself could not … This is the idea that our universe is not the only one in existence. professor Max Tegmark explores the possibility that math does not just describe the universe, but makes the universe … Why Does the World Exist? in a precise sense, "electron" and "quark" are just names for human convenience, to indicate that they are two different stuff. He and the book were on the LA Times bestseller list during the last quarter of 2012, and the first quarter of 2013. Gives me a fresh perspective on that tired "turtles all the way down" story a certain kind of person loves to reference: in the context of this book, whose author clearly doesn't think women have anything of value (well, anything at all, actually) to contribute to the pressing concerns of humanity, the one woman who gets a mention is one who made a stupid comment to a brilliant man delivering a lecture she obviously didn't understand and thus sealed her legacy as a droll punchline and illustration of the hilarious antics of uneducated plebeians for class acts like the author of this book and his cohorts. The book was also a 2012 National Book Critics Award finalist for nonfiction. The eternal question of why the universe exists (or how something came from the nothing) is revisited by Jim Holt in his new book Why Does the World Exist? Why Does the World Exist? Wonderful book. Why Does the World Exist?, By Jim Holt. As Jim Holt tells it, Martin Amis once remarked in an interview that we're about 5 Einsteins away from answering the question of why things exist and how the universe popped into being. As he pieces together a solution--one that sheds new light on the question of God and the meaning of existence--he offers brisk philosophical asides on time and eternity, consciousness, and the arithmetic of nothingness. Why Does the World Exist? Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz was the first to publish the question in 1714. As Jim Holt tells it, Martin Amis once remarked in an interview that we're about 5 Einsteins away from answering the question of why things exist and how the universe popped into being. It’s a peripatetic book, one that only occasionally seems really … This is becoming tedious. Most people have heard of the possibility of more than one universe from science fiction stories and movies. Taking the thought to heart, he gave himself the task of talking to a succession of experts--particle physicists, theologians, philosophers, cosmologists, mystics, and a great writer, heavy thinkers all--who he hoped would prove to be one or two or three of those Einsteins shining a light down the path toward the answer. He questions the idea that there is a world that encompasses everything like a container life, the universe, and ev Philosopher and writer Jim Holt follows this question toward three possible answers. The universe shouldn't exist, scientists say after finding bizarre behaviour of anti-matter. All well & good & I enjoyed the ride, even though one should know from the outset that nothing will be decided. Why is there a world, why are we in it, and why is there something rather than nothing at all? An exuberant romp of a book. Thomas believes God's existence, although not self-evident, can be made evident using reasoning drawn from the nature and structure of the world. It's more engaging than most surveys, with some nice cameos by prominent scientists/philosophers, and less shallow than most things aimed at a general audience. A Physicist Explains Why Parallel Universes May Exist … It does not understand the languages in which they are written. : An Existential Detective Story” as Want to Read: Error rating book. Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist. All told, Why Does the World Exist? ", Books of the Times - Into the Nothing, After Something. "National Book Critics Circle Names 2012 Award Finalists", "Review of Jim Holt's Why Does the World Exist? “Why Does the Universe Exist?” could have used more moments that slyly build to something like awe. If Jim Holt's deft and consuming Why Does the … An intriguing and hopeless search for the meaning of existence. That was my introduction to the mystery of existence. :An Existential Detective Story, tackles the question that Martin Heidegger characterized as the greatest in all philosophy and William James called the darkest in all philosophy—why is there something rather than nothing? Far from being an imaginary idea, multiple universes can exist, according to … Following in the footsteps of Christopher Hitchens, Roger Penrose, and even Stephen Hawking, Jim Holt now enters this fractious debate with his lively and deeply informed narrative that traces the latest efforts to grasp the origins of the universe. Where did the book come from? This may sound like the dumbest of questions, for we know our universe is all the matter and energy that inhabits space and time. In their new book, "The Grand Design," phyicists Stephen Hawking and Len Mlodinow tackle the ultimate meaning of life questions: why does the universe behaves the way it does and why do we exist? There was not a single page where I thought to myself ah yes that obviously makes sense, each page elicited a headache. The so-called "five ways" are taken from his Summa Theologica. This was the view of the 17th century philosopher Spinoza, who claimed that the entire universe, along with all of its contents, laws and events, had to exist, and exist in the way it does. 10 mysteries of the universe: Why does anything exist at all? This book came to me via the very positive New York Times Book Review review, and it made the Times list of best books of the year. The walls are covered to the ceilings with books in many different tongues. An Existential Detective Story' by Jim Holt", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Why_Does_the_World_Exist%3F&oldid=977004557, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 6 September 2020, at 10:49. This is the idea that our universe is not the only one in existence. Why, Holt wonders, does the multiverse exist, if the multiverse is the answer to why the world exists? remains the darkest and most enduring of all metaphysical mysteries. The mystery of why the universe exists still intrigues and defies philosophers, theologians, scientists, and pretty much anyone who’s ever sprawled in a park and stared at the sky. space, time and complexity. Although not related to my major I wanted an A in that class more than anything. ( CC0) Let the unpacking began. We asked the... "Why is there a world rather than nothing at all?" Why does the universe exist? This is a far more personal and self-disclosing book than I expected, and skates very far, I feared at first, in the direction of one of those concocted "How the Irish Jews Saved The Parthenon, Invented Caller ID, and Inspired Emily Dickinson" sort of books. Midway through the book, however, I began to wonder why all the philosophers, scientists or simply very smart people the author consulted & conversed with were white males & pretty exclusively North American or British (perhaps a few Frenchmen, since the author does journey to Paris a few times & he does at least mention Buddhism at the very end of the book). But many cosmologists now believe there are other “universes”, and perhaps our universe arose from one of them. Jim Holt’s recent book, Why Does the World Exist? – why the universe exists, or why there is something rather than nothing [1, 2]. Holt took an interesting approach with this book, combining a serious, if somewhat light-hearted, philosophical inquiry into a profound metaphysical question with a non-fiction style situated between autobiography and travelogue. Let us know what’s wrong with this preview of, Published In “Why Does the World Exist?,” Jim Holt, an elegant and witty writer comfortably at home in the problem’s weird interzone between philosophy and scientific cosmology, sets out in search of such answers. In other words: Why does the universe exist (and why are we in it)? It began with the big bang almost 14 billion years ago. Cleveland Plain Dealer. Holt reminds us philosophy can be fun, too. It has become completely passé, if not commercially unviable, to begin a book with a thesis and spend the chapters that follow attempting to prove it with logic and evidence. People have wrestled with the mystery of why the universe exists for thousands of years. He conducts interviews with leading scientists and philosophers who have explored the mysteries of existence using the tools of mathematics, quantum mechanics, platonic philosophy, and philosophical inquiry. is an intellectual quest of one the most intriguing philosophical questions, "Why Does the World Exist". same goes for quark as well. It's a classical philosophical question. same goes for quark as well. If Jim Holt's deft and consuming Why Does the World Why does the universe exist? This book helped clarify for me that I’m much more interested in the whats and hows of existence than the why of it. p180 ABC Television 20/20 Interview, 1989 "It is difficult to discuss the beginning of the universe without mentioning the concept of God. International Journal of Transpersonal Studies 24:69-76 (2005) 24:69-76 (2005) is exceedingly clear and well written. Sure, it has taught me enough about Leibniz and Spinoza to be vaguely re-interested in specific metaphysicians, but Holt's self-absorbed and self-serving writing style is not worth my time. Far from being an imaginary idea, multiple universes can exist, according to … An exuberant romp of a book. Why is there — Okay. There could not be a causal explanation of why the Universe exists, why there are any laws of nature, or why these laws are as they are. Physicists have found the answer and it will blow your mind QUANTUM physicists have finally answered the biggest question of them all – why is there a universe? Certianlyk the organizing question--why does the universe exist?--is interesting. exist?) : An Existential Detective Story is a nonfiction work authored by Jim Holt. The New York Review of Books - What Can You Really Know? Okay. The Washington Post Notable Non-Fiction of 2013 “I can imagine few more enjoyable ways of thinking than to read this book.”—Sarah Bakewell, New York Times Book Review , front-page review, Why Does the World Exist?, An Existential Detective Story, Jim Holt, 9780871403599 We’d love your help. The Multiverse is an extremely controversial idea, but at its core it's a very simple concept. Part of this is my fault: I forced myself through the equally terrible Assholes: A Theory last year and should know by now that navel-gazing logic-heavy philosophical books based around thought experiments are not my cup of tea. why do we think that the universe is made of electron and quark? Inconclusive as any such book must be, so don't pick it up expecting one definitive version of an answer. Like most metaphysics surveys, it spent a while gr. Holt's objection to the brute-fact view, then – the view, that is, that the existence of the universe as a whole has no explanation, most likely because it has simply always been around – … The question of being itself, as Updike and Holt agree, can seem profound in one mood, vacuous in another. The author considers all possible perspectives, a strategy which makes the discussion a bit vague and directionless in my opinion. Why Does the World Exist? He and the book were on the LA Times bestseller list during the last quarter of 2012, and the first quarter of 2013. Midway through the book, however, I began to wonder why all the philosophers, scientists or simply very smart peop. This supremely unimportant book raises three deep and troubling questions. The s. "Why is there a world rather than nothing at all?" True to the story I missed it by like .1 of a point. He questions the idea that there is a world that encompasses everything like a container life, the universe, and ev Why does the universe exist? I was furious, outraged, bombastic. There could not be a causal explanation of why God exists. I have to assume that an exclusionary principle operated at the level of personal inclination, or disinclination, as it were. After all, some basic physics suggests that you and the rest of the universe are overwhelmingly unlikely to exist. Why Does the Universe Exist and Other Things We Cannot Know. The puzzle of why there is something rather than nothing – from which all the biggest questions of metaphysics spring such as ‘where did we come … why do we think that the universe is made of electron and quark? Why Does the World Exist?, By Jim Holt. Similar remarks apply to all suggestions of these kinds. Although it seems unlikely that science will answer this question (at least in my lifetime, and probably ever), the philosophical approaches, which dominate the book, offer even less hope. In this excerpt from his new book, Our Mathematical Universe, M.I.T. Refresh and try again. Like most metaphysics surveys, it spent a while grappling with the Christian god but fortunately didn't take long before dismissing the idea (though Holt did it with tact I guess which might help some readers). By Derek Parfit This Spring Derek Parfit is Visiting Profssor of Philosophy at Harvard University, where he is teaching "Recent Ethical Theory" with T. M. Scanlon. Search Results for “why-the-universe-exists” – PDF Search Engine To see what your friends thought of this book. Following in the footsteps of Christopher Hitchens, Roger Penrose, and even Stephen Hawking, Jim Holt now enters this fractious debate with his lively and deeply informed narrative that traces the latest efforts to grasp the origins of the universe. Why Does the World Exist? their properties like charge, mass, spin etc are also just indicative of certain interaction they engage with. Unfortunately, the book is dominated by the materialistic assumption that the ultimate explanation will be physical rather than Personal. Already, I've started a list of folk who will find it gift-wrapped from me at the holidays.— Karen R. Long. Why Does the World Exist? The author won't even get to the bottom of what exactly "nothing" IS. Philosopher and author Jim Holt plays the role of the inquisitive detective who is on a mission to answer the ultimate question of existence. “The human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe. The evolution of the Universe from the big bang to the present. Why is there something instead of nothing? Well we exist because we are a part of the world, this world/universe is part of its fellow universes in the multiverse. The anthropic principle is a group of principles attempting to determine how statistically probable our observations of the universe are, given that we could only exist in a particular type of universe to start with. People have wrestled with the mystery of why the universe exists for thousands of years. (Laughter) This is a cosmic mystery. Philosopher and author Jim Holt plays the role of the inquisitive detective who is on a mission to answer the ultimate question of existence. William James called the question of existence "the darkest in all philosohpy." The whole group of universes, if there are indeed more than one, is commonly called the multiverse. Science cannot answer the deepest questions. It is philosophically engaging and highly informative. This review of contemporary thinking on the question of existence represents the best of North American intellectual journalism where the writer tries to represent the intelligent 'ordinary joe' in his search for knowledge. Childhood memories and annual traditions. Firstly, that there is nothing else to create the universe but itself (because it came from nothing). Sadly, the book sheds no light on the question. I really, really don't like not finishing books, so congratulations to Mr. Holt for being one of the chosen few (I gave up with about 90 pages to go). Over the last few centuries, however, the divide between science and philosophy has grown larger and more irreconcilable, even while science overwhelmingly surpassed philosophy in importance. Holt was never going to get much beyond a detailed description of "what is" or "why what is is the way it is," when the book's central question is actually "Why is there something. We don't know why the universe isn't destroying itself A fine study of the laws of the universe interrogates what, if anything, came before the Big Bang That said, though I left with a pleasant reading experience, a deeper understanding of the issues, and lots to ponder, I didn't leave with the answer (but then one shouldn't expect to, given the complexity of the question). : An Existential Detective Story by Jim Holt "Why Does the World Exist?" Sadly, the book sheds no light on the question. We are like a little child entering a huge library. Three cheers for deep thought and wild conjecture! Already, I've started a list of folk who will find it gift-wrapped from me at the holidays.— Karen R. Long. It's more engaging than most surveys, with some nice cameos by prominent scientists/philosophers, and less shallow than most things aimed at a general audience. One is far likely to be left with some questions which one hopes Jim would have asked, but didn't- which is a wonderful testament to the genius of this book, since Jim is likely to be smarter than any of his readers. Lewis’s point is that religion and philosophy study the abstract question of why humans do things, while … Holt ponders that most enduring & impossible of questions: why is there something rather than nothing. The child knows that someone must have written these books. What?! Nor would it make a difference if there is a God, who caused the rest of the Universe to exist. Too much belly button lint in here for my taste. The author seems very willing to travel, since he crossed the Atlantic to Paris & London several times. He is an atheist. It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going." Be solemn. It was paining me to get through this to begin with, because at the end of the day, though armed with plenty of jargon a. I really, really don't like not finishing books, so congratulations to Mr. Holt for being one of the chosen few (I gave up with about 90 pages to go). : An Existential Detective Story. Time spent with an old friend. Unlike many, Jim is able to convey his reverence for some of the people he speaks with, and he does not put words in their mouths - far from it. Engaging and thoughtful and deftly told (probably all these adjectives are used in the blurbs, but in this case they're accurate). Download Full Why The Universe Exists Book in PDF, EPUB, Mobi and All Ebook Format. In this highly original new book, the philosopher Markus Gabriel challenges our notion of what exists and what it means to exist. So the universe should be capable of making its own space, time and complexity. But Jim Holt's slyly amiable and vulnerable persona is armed with a very serious purpose, and rather than give us potted versions of the views of the various players in this arena, he works out his own understanding, often in conversation with the philosophers, physicists, and mathematicians themselves. And it artistically weaves together a personal narrative and quest with a deeply intellectual and highly abstract inquiry. So, he wasn't forced by lack of funds, time, or physical disability from seeking answers further afield. Profssor Parfit is a Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford He is the author of … Some things are better reasoned through from first principles, and I think the universe is definitely one of those things. Why is there something instead of nothing? (Why else would "Why Does the World Exist?" Part of this is my fault: I forced myself through the equally terrible Assholes: A Theory last year and should know by now that navel-gazing logic-heavy philosophical books based around thought experiments are not my cup of tea. Why is there something instead of nothing? Because he wanted to, silly. In Stephen Hawking's final book "Brief Answers to Big Questions," published ... time does not exist. You also can read online Why The Universe Exists and write the review about the book. Welcome back. The slyly humorous Holt takes on the role of cosmological detective, suggesting that we might have been too narrow in limiting our suspects to Yahweh vs. the Big Bang. In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. 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