Sunday, October 09, 2011

Again, we've got to re-think everything

I am an advocate of science.  It comes to me naturally, it seems, since I grew up in a home where my dad was a Science Teacher!

I am thankful that I have been able to spend the past decades of my life having had opportunity to witness strategic and important new discoveries in Science.  Some of these discoveries have extended past theories in new ways - and some of these discoveries raise challenges to the certainty with which we "know what we know."

As a theologian, these issues are important to me - because getting at the heart of what we know and don't know - about all things - about Ultimate things - is very important.

It is with intrigue, therefore, that I read this recent news:

Roll over Einstein: Law of physics challenged

GENEVA (AP) — One of the very pillars of physics and Einstein's theory of relativity — that nothing can go faster than the speed of light — was rocked Thursday by new findings from one of the world's foremost laboratories.

European researchers said they clocked an oddball type of subatomic particle called a neutrino going faster than the 186,282 miles per second that has long been considered the cosmic speed limit.

The claim was met with skepticism, with one outside physicist calling it the equivalent of saying you have a flying carpet. In fact, the researchers themselves are not ready to proclaim a discovery and are asking other physicists to independently try to verify their findings.

"The feeling that most people have is this can't be right, this can't be real," said James Gillies, a spokesman for the European Organization for Nuclear Research, or CERN, which provided the particle accelerator that sent neutrinos on their breakneck 454-mile trip underground from Geneva to Italy.  (Full Article here.)

An interesting response to this news - that raises issues about new cosmologies and new theologies that might need to be explored as the result of this:  HERE.

I certainly do not have "answers" to these complex realities - and I don't pretend to peddle easy responses!  For sure!

And yet, I marvel at the mystery that continues to shape what we do and do not know in this utterly, seemingly-infinitely complex world. 

It is truly Awe-inspiring to me.

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