In these brilliant essays, the power of imagination, Lightman explores the emotional life of science, the creative moment, and the alternate ways in which scientists and humanists think about the world. Along the way, including albert einstein, Edward Teller, Richard Feynman, he provides in-depth portraits of some of the great geniuses of our time, and astronomer Vera Rubin.
The Accidental Universe: The World You Thought You KnewVintage #ad - Throughout, lightman takes us back and forth between ordinary occurrences—old shoes and entropy, sailing far out at sea and the infinite expanse of space. In this slight volume, lightman looks toward the universe and captures aspects of it in a series of beautifully written essays, there symmetry, each offering a glimpse at the whole from a different perspective: here time, not least God.
Alan lightman brings a light touch to heavy questions. Here is a book about nesting ospreys, spiritualism, multiple universes, atheism, and the arrow of time. Galison, joseph pellegrino University Professor, Harvard University. It is a meditation by a remarkable humanist-physicist, a book worth reading by anyone entranced by big ideas grounded in the physical world.
Searching for Stars on an Island in MaineVintage #ad - He draws on sources ranging from saint augustine's conception of absolute truth to Einstein's theory of relativity, from the unity of the once-indivisible atom to the multiplicity of subatomic particles and the recent notion of multiple universes. What he gives us is a profound inquiry into the human desire for truth and meaning, and a journey along the different paths of religion and science that become part of that quest.
Searching for stars on an Island in Maine is Lightman's exploration of these seemingly contradictory impulses. From the acclaimed author of einstein's dreams, here is an inspires, lyrical meditation on religion and science that explores the tension between our yearning for permanence and certainty, and the modern scientific discoveries that demonstrate the impermanent and uncertain nature of the world.
Searching for Stars on an Island in Maine #ad - As a physicist, alan Lightman has always held a scientific view of the world. But one summer evening, lightman was overcome by the overwhelming sensation that he was merging with something larger than himself—a grand and eternal unity, while looking at the stars from a small boat at sea, a hint of something absolute and immaterial.
As a teenager experimenting in his own laboratory, he was impressed by the logic and materiality of a universe governed by a small number of disembodied forces and laws that decree all things in the world are material and impermanent.
In Praise of Wasting Time TED BooksSimon & Schuster/ TED #ad - In this timely and essential book that offers a fresh take on the qualms of modern day life, Professor Alan Lightman investigates the creativity born from allowing our minds to freely roam, without attempting to accomplish anything and without any assigned tasks. We are all worried about wasting time. We check email at restaurants or our brokerage accounts while walking in the park.
. With in praise of wasting time, for creative thought, professor alan lightman documents the rush and heave of the modern world, suggests the technological and cultural origins of our time-driven lives, and examines the many values of “wasting time”—for replenishing the mind, and for finding and solidifying the inner self.
In Praise of Wasting Time TED Books #ad - We take our iPhones and laptops with us on vacation. In his 1949 autobiography, albert Einstein described how his thinking involved letting his mind roam over many possibilities and making connections between concepts that were previously unconnected. When the school day ends, our children are overloaded with “extras.
Our university curricula are so crammed our young people don’t have time to reflect on the material they are supposed to be learning. Yet in the face of our time-driven existence, ” of letting the mind lie fallow for some periods, a great deal of evidence suggests there is great value in “wasting time, of letting minutes and even hours go by without scheduled activities or intended tasks.
Break free from the idea that we must not waste a single second, and discover how sometimes the best thing to do is to do nothing at all. Gustav mahler routinely took three or four-hour walks after lunch, stopping to jot down ideas in his notebook.
Einstein's Dreams Vintage ContemporariesVintage #ad - In one, time is circular, so that people are fated to repeat triumphs and failures over and over. In another, time is a nightingale, sometimes trapped by a bell jar. Now translated into thirty languages, dancers, musicians, Einstein’s Dreams has inspired playwrights, and painters all over the world. In another, there is a place where time stands still, visited by lovers and parents clinging to their children.
. As the defiant but sensitive young genius is creating his theory of relativity, a new conception of time, he imagines many possible worlds. In poetic vignettes, the process of creativity, it explores the connections between science and art, and ultimately the fragility of human existence. A modern classic, about time, einstein’s Dreams is a fictional collage of stories dreamed by Albert Einstein in 1905, relativity and physics.
Mr g: A Novel About the Creation Vintage ContemporariesVintage #ad - Mr g is all powerful but not all knowing and does much of his invention by trial and error. Even the best-laid plans can go awry, and mr g discovers that with his creation of space and time come some unforeseen consequences—especially in the form of the mysterious Belhor, a clever and devious rival. As mr g watches his favorite universe grow into maturity, he begins to understand how the act of creation can change himself, the Creator.
With echoes of calvino, combining science, rushdie, theology, and Saramago, and moral philosophy, Mr g is a stunningly imaginative work that celebrates the tragic and joyous nature of existence on the grandest possible scale. As i remember, i had just woken up from a nap when I decided to create the universe.
Mr g: A Novel About the Creation Vintage Contemporaries #ad - So begins alan lightman’s playful and profound new novel, Mr g, the story of Creation as told by God. An intellectual equal to mr g, requests that the newly created intelligent creatures not be subject to rational laws, Belhor delights in provoking him: Belhor demands an explanation for the inexplicable, and maintains the necessity of evil.
Then come stars, and, consciousness, planets, animate matter, finally, intelligent beings with moral dilemmas. Barraged by the constant advisements and bickerings of Aunt Penelope and Uncle Deva, Mr g proceeds to create time, space, who live with their nephew in the shimmering Void, and matter.
Dance for Two: EssaysPantheon #ad - Here are pieces that touch on both the ethereal and the corporeal; the dependence of a ballerina on the laws of physics, the unscientific nature of discovery, the choice of every scientist makes between tinkering and theorizing, the impulse behind an unprompted smile. For the last twenty years, Alan Lightman has been writing essays that display his genius for bringing literary and scientific concerns into harmony.
Dance for two gathers the best of Lightman's work. Dance for two is an intimate and fascinating look into the creative compulsions shared by the artist and the scientist.
The Discoveries: Great Breakthroughs in 20th-Century Science, Including the Original PapersVintage #ad - It brings the process of discovery to life before our very eyes. Finally he includes a fascinating and unique guided tour through the original papers in which the discoveries were revealed. Here are einstein, bohr, fleming, Watson and Crick, Paul ing, McClintock, Heisenberg and many others. In this captivating and lucid book, novelist and science writer Alan Lightman chronicles twenty-four great discoveries of twentieth-century science--everything from the theory of relativity to mapping the structure of DNA.
These discoveries radically changed our notions of the world and our place in it. With remarkable insight, lightman charts the intellectual and emotional landscape of the time, portrays the human drama of discovery, and explains the significance and impact of the work. Here is science writing at its best–beautiful, lyrical and completely accessible.
Song of Two WorldsRed Hen Press #ad - Verdict a vivid and moving book-length narrative poem that places the reader inside of a universe of wonder; of interest to poetry readers and beyond. Library journalfrom the author of international bestseller Einstein's Dreams and National Book Award nominee The Diagnosis. After decades of living “hung like a dried fly, religion, the narrator, a man who has lost his faith in all things following a mysterious personal tragedy, first turning to the world of science and then to the world of philosophy, ” emptied and haunted by his past, awakens one morning revitalized and begins a Dante-like journey to find something to believe in, and human life.
As his personal story is slowly revealed, we confront the great questions of the cosmos and of the human heart, little by little, some questions with answers and others without. An exciting new illustrated edition of a unique narrative poem.
Three Flames: A NovelCounterpoint #ad - Lightman’s best book since Einstein’s Dreams. Daughter nita is married off at sixteen to a wandering husband, while her sister Thida is sent to the city to work in the factories to settle their father’s gambling debt. A piercing story of social dissolution in damaged Cambodia. Yet it will be up to sreypov, the youngest, to bravely challenge her father and strive for a better future.
Three flames is a vivid story of one family's yearning for freedom and of a young girl's courage to face down tradition. Lyrical and poignant, three flames weaves the stories of three generations of a poor, Cambodian farming family as they struggle to survive and hold on to their humanity. Kamal, the only son, dreams of marrying the most beautiful girl in the village and escaping the life of a farmer.
Ryna is a mother fighting against memories of her father’s death at the hands of the Khmer Rouge and her powerful desire for revenge. An important story of global women’s rights. Annie proulxthe stories of one Cambodian family are intricately braided together in Alan Lightman’s first work of fiction in seven years.
Three Flames: A Novel #ad - Three flames portrays the struggles of a cambodian farming family against the extreme patriarchal attitudes of their society and a cruel and dictatorial father, set in a rural community that is slowly being exposed to the modern world and its values. Beautifully written and told with great compassion, Alan Lightman's novel gives readers a family that is rich in stories, history, and heart, proving in the end that love shines even in the midst of great darkness.