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Humanity in a Creative Universe

Humanity in a Creative Universe Author Stuart A. Kauffman
ISBN-10 9780199390458
Release 2016-02-25
Pages 312
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Much of Stuart Kauffman's work in the philosophy of evolutionary biology has centered on the question of what he calls "prestatability" in evolution: that is, whether or not science can precisely predict the future development of biological features in organisms, using a singular "FinalTheory" of evolution. In this book, Kauffman argues that the development of life on earth is not prestatable, because no theory could ever fully account for the limitless variability of evolution. He believes that the biological universe's primary trait is that it is creative, and that acknowledgingthis creativity will lead to a radically different way in which humans view themselves and all other living beings. It is an argument against Reductive Materialism.Kauffman also asserts that man's Modern preoccupation to explain all things with scientific law has deadened our creative natures. In his words, he aims for the book to be "one that revises our scientific world view of the universe as entirely entailed by law." Instead, he advocates an approach toscience that accounts for "unprestatable" creativity, thus allowing humans to fully realize their creative selves. The book will build off the ideas developed in his last two works, Reinventing the Sacred and Investigations. Incorporating philosophers like Kant and Descartes, as well as the scienceof Newton and Darwin, Humanity in a Creative Universe is Stuart Kauffman's argument for a creative and unpredictable view of modern science.



Humanity in a Creative Universe

Humanity in a Creative Universe Author Stuart A. Kauffman
ISBN-10 9780199390472
Release 2016-02-02
Pages 456
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In the hard sciences, which can often feel out of grasp for many lay readers, there are "great thinkers" who go far beyond the equations, formulas, and research. Minds such as Stephen Hawking philosophize about the functions and nature of the universe, the implications of our existence, and other impossibly fascinating, yet difficult questions. Stuart A. Kauffman is one of those great thinkers. He has dedicated his lifetime to researching "complex systems" at prestigious institutions and now writes his treatise on the most complex system of all: our universe. A recent Scientific American article claims that "philosophy begins where physics ends, and physics begins where philosophy ends," and perhaps no better quote sums up what Kauffman's latest book offers. Grounded in his rigorous training and research background, Kauffman is inter-disciplinary in every sense of the word, sorting through the major questions and theories in biology, physics, and philosophy. Best known for his philosophy of evolutionary biology, Kauffman coined the term "prestatability" to call into question whether science can ever accurately and precisely predict the future development of biological features in organisms. As evidenced by the title's mention of creativity, the book refreshingly argues that our preoccupation to explain all things with scientific law has deadened our creative natures. In this fascinating read, Kauffman concludes that the development of life on earth is not entirely predictable, because no theory could ever fully account for the limitless variations of evolution. Sure to cause a stir, this book will be discussed for years to come and may even set the tone for the next "great thinker."



Reinventing the Sacred

Reinventing the Sacred Author Stuart A. Kauffman
ISBN-10 9781458722065
Release 2010-11-29
Pages 532
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Consider the complexity of a living cell after 3.8 billion years of evolution. Is it more awesome to suppose that a transcendent God fashioned the cell at a stroke, or to realize that it evolved with no Almighty Hand, but arose on its own in the changing biosphere? In this bold and fresh look at science and religion, complexity theorist Stuart Kauffman argues that the qualities of divinity that we revere - creativity, meaning, purposeful action - are properties of the universe that can be investigated methodically. He offers stunning evidence for this idea in an abundance of fields, from cell biology to the philosophy of mind, and uses it to find common ground between belief systems often at odds with one another. A daring and ambitious argument for a new understanding of natural divinity, Reinventing the Sacred challenges readers both scientifically and philosophically.



At Home in the Universe

At Home in the Universe Author Stuart Kauffman
ISBN-10 9780199761852
Release 1996-11-21
Pages 336
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A major scientific revolution has begun, a new paradigm that rivals Darwin's theory in importance. At its heart is the discovery of the order that lies deep within the most complex of systems, from the origin of life, to the workings of giant corporations, to the rise and fall of great civilizations. And more than anyone else, this revolution is the work of one man, Stuart Kauffman, a MacArthur Fellow and visionary pioneer of the new science of complexity. Now, in At Home in the Universe, Kauffman brilliantly weaves together the excitement of intellectual discovery and a fertile mix of insights to give the general reader a fascinating look at this new science--and at the forces for order that lie at the edge of chaos. We all know of instances of spontaneous order in nature--an oil droplet in water forms a sphere, snowflakes have a six-fold symmetry. What we are only now discovering, Kauffman says, is that the range of spontaneous order is enormously greater than we had supposed. Indeed, self-organization is a great undiscovered principle of nature. But how does this spontaneous order arise? Kauffman contends that complexity itself triggers self-organization, or what he calls "order for free," that if enough different molecules pass a certain threshold of complexity, they begin to self-organize into a new entity--a living cell. Kauffman uses the analogy of a thousand buttons on a rug--join two buttons randomly with thread, then another two, and so on. At first, you have isolated pairs; later, small clusters; but suddenly at around the 500th repetition, a remarkable transformation occurs--much like the phase transition when water abruptly turns to ice--and the buttons link up in one giant network. Likewise, life may have originated when the mix of different molecules in the primordial soup passed a certain level of complexity and self-organized into living entities (if so, then life is not a highly improbable chance event, but almost inevitable). Kauffman uses the basic insight of "order for free" to illuminate a staggering range of phenomena. We see how a single-celled embryo can grow to a highly complex organism with over two hundred different cell types. We learn how the science of complexity extends Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection: that self-organization, selection, and chance are the engines of the biosphere. And we gain insights into biotechnology, the stunning magic of the new frontier of genetic engineering--generating trillions of novel molecules to find new drugs, vaccines, enzymes, biosensors, and more. Indeed, Kauffman shows that ecosystems, economic systems, and even cultural systems may all evolve according to similar general laws, that tissues and terra cotta evolve in similar ways. And finally, there is a profoundly spiritual element to Kauffman's thought. If, as he argues, life were bound to arise, not as an incalculably improbable accident, but as an expected fulfillment of the natural order, then we truly are at home in the universe. Kauffman's earlier volume, The Origins of Order, written for specialists, received lavish praise. Stephen Jay Gould called it "a landmark and a classic." And Nobel Laureate Philip Anderson wrote that "there are few people in this world who ever ask the right questions of science, and they are the ones who affect its future most profoundly. Stuart Kauffman is one of these." In At Home in the Universe, this visionary thinker takes you along as he explores new insights into the nature of life.



Big History and the Future of Humanity

Big History and the Future of Humanity Author Fred Spier
ISBN-10 9781118881712
Release 2015-03-04
Pages 360
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Featuring a variety of updates and revisions, Big History and the Future of Humanity, Second Edition, presents an accessible and original overview of the entire sweep of history from the origins of the universe and origins of life on Earth up to the present day. Provides an accessible and original overview of the entire sweep of history that places human history within the context of the history of life, the Earth, and the universe Offers new insights into the future of humanity by providing a better understanding of the past Features a variety of updates and revisions that include increased coverage of key concepts such as the emergence of human behaviour, the development of value systems, and patterns of complexity in Big History Incorporates a variety of 'little big histories' that aid readers in recognizing how big history concepts can relate to their daily lives Instructor resources from the author will be available online upon publication Find additional resources from the author online at www.bighistory.info



Neither Ghost nor Machine

Neither Ghost nor Machine Author Jeremy Sherman
ISBN-10 9780231545990
Release 2017-10-10
Pages
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If the universe is aimless, how do selves and aims emerge? Why do living beings have aims when inanimate things do not? Current science encourages us to reject the ghost-in-the-machine explanation—that something called spirit, soul, mind, or will was somehow breathed into matter—and instead accept that selves are just matter, in aimless mechanistic motion like everything else. But what about life’s many emergent qualities, the multifarious purposes that shape actual physical behavior not just in human lives, but in all of life? Even the simplest life forms have adaptive functions, traits that accomplish goals or ends. How can we explain the nature and origin of selves and aims without resorting to supernatural forces or explaining them away as nothing but cause-and-effect mechanisms? In Neither Ghost nor Machine, Jeremy Sherman explains the emergence of selves and aims in an aimless universe. He distills for a general audience the theory developed by renowned neuroscientist Terrence Deacon, which extends the breakthrough constraint-based insight that inspired evolutionary, information, and self-organization theory. Emergent dynamics theory provides a testable hypothesis for how mattering arose from matter, function from physics, and means-to-ends behavior from cause-and-effect dynamics. It offers a physics of purpose, demonstrating that there is a strictly physical explanation for the emergence and nature of selves and aims, one that shows our existence in an otherwise inanimate universe is not absurd. Neither Ghost nor Machine bridges the gap between the hard and soft sciences, suggesting fresh and exciting solutions to philosophical mysteries that have perplexed humanity for millennia, from free will to causality to morality.



Journey of the Universe

Journey of the Universe Author Brian Thomas Swimme
ISBN-10 9780300171907
Release 2011-06-28
Pages 175
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The authors tell the epic story of the universe from an inspired new perspective, weaving the findings of modern science together with enduring wisdom found in the humanistic traditions of the West, China, India, and indigenous peoples. This book is part of a larger project that includes a documentary film, educational DVD series, and Web site.



Biology of Wonder

Biology of Wonder Author Andreas Weber
ISBN-10 9781550925944
Release 2016-01-04
Pages 336
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Biology of Wonder has been writing in one form or another for most of life. You can find so many inspiration from Biology of Wonder also informative, and entertaining. Click DOWNLOAD or Read Online button to get full Biology of Wonder book for free.



Cosmic Blueprint

Cosmic Blueprint Author Paul Davies
ISBN-10 9781932031669
Release 2004
Pages 234
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In this critically acclaimed book, first published in 1988 and now reprinted in paperback, scientist and author Paul Davies explains how recent scientific advances are transforming our understanding of the emergence of complexity and organization in the universe. Melding a variety of ideas and disciplines from biology, fundamental physics, computer science, mathematics, genetics, and neurology, Davies presents his provocative theory on the source of the universe's creative potency. He explores the new paradigm (replacing the centuries-old Newtonian view of the universe) that recognizes the collective and holistic properties of physical systems and the power of self-organization. He casts the laws in physics in the role of a "blueprint," embodying a grand cosmic scheme that progressively unfolds as the universe develops. Challenging the viewpoint that the physical universe is a meaningless collection particles, he finds overwhelming evidence for an underlying purpose: "Science may explain all the processes whereby the universe evolves its own destiny, but that still leaves room for there to be a meaning behind existence."



The Grand Design

The Grand Design Author Stephen Hawking
ISBN-10 9780553907070
Release 2010-09-07
Pages 208
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#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER When and how did the universe begin? Why are we here? What is the nature of reality? Is the apparent “grand design” of our universe evidence of a benevolent creator who set things in motion—or does science offer another explanation? In this startling and lavishly illustrated book, Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow present the most recent scientific thinking about these and other abiding mysteries of the universe, in nontechnical language marked by brilliance and simplicity. According to quantum theory, the cosmos does not have just a single existence or history. The authors explain that we ourselves are the product of quantum fluctuations in the early universe, and show how quantum theory predicts the “multiverse”—the idea that ours is just one of many universes that appeared spontaneously out of nothing, each with different laws of nature. They conclude with a riveting assessment of M-theory, an explanation of the laws governing our universe that is currently the only viable candidate for a “theory of everything”: the unified theory that Einstein was looking for, which, if confirmed, would represent the ultimate triumph of human reason.



The New Universe and the Human Future

The New Universe and the Human Future Author Nancy Ellen Abrams
ISBN-10 9780300167320
Release 2011
Pages 257
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"Most people assume either that Earth was created as-is a few thousand years ago, or else that it's a lonely rock in endless space--although both assumptions are wrong. Meanwhile, global problems like climate destabilization, economic chaos, religious-justified violence, and exhaustion of planetary resources are escalating. These facts are connected. The new universe picture described in this book provides a believable new origin story and cosmic context, which help us to think for the first time on large enough time and size scales to see how to keep Earth and the human species healthy long into the future"--



The Meaning of Human Existence

The Meaning of Human Existence Author Edward O. Wilson
ISBN-10 9780871404800
Release 2014-10-06
Pages 192
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National Book Award Finalist. How did humanity originate and why does a species like ours exist on this planet? Do we have a special place, even a destiny in the universe? Where are we going, and perhaps, the most difficult question of all, "Why?" In The Meaning of Human Existence, his most philosophical work to date, Pulitzer Prize–winning biologist Edward O. Wilson grapples with these and other existential questions, examining what makes human beings supremely different from all other species. Searching for meaning in what Nietzsche once called "the rainbow colors" around the outer edges of knowledge and imagination, Wilson takes his readers on a journey, in the process bridging science and philosophy to create a twenty-first-century treatise on human existence—from our earliest inception to a provocative look at what the future of mankind portends. Continuing his groundbreaking examination of our "Anthropocene Epoch," which he began with The Social Conquest of Earth, described by the New York Times as "a sweeping account of the human rise to domination of the biosphere," here Wilson posits that we, as a species, now know enough about the universe and ourselves that we can begin to approach questions about our place in the cosmos and the meaning of intelligent life in a systematic, indeed, in a testable way. Once criticized for a purely mechanistic view of human life and an overreliance on genetic predetermination, Wilson presents in The Meaning of Human Existence his most expansive and advanced theories on the sovereignty of human life, recognizing that, even though the human and the spider evolved similarly, the poet's sonnet is wholly different from the spider's web. Whether attempting to explicate "The Riddle of the Human Species," "Free Will," or "Religion"; warning of "The Collapse of Biodiversity"; or even creating a plausible "Portrait of E.T.," Wilson does indeed believe that humanity holds a special position in the known universe. The human epoch that began in biological evolution and passed into pre-, then recorded, history is now more than ever before in our hands. Yet alarmed that we are about to abandon natural selection by redesigning biology and human nature as we wish them, Wilson soberly concludes that advances in science and technology bring us our greatest moral dilemma since God stayed the hand of Abraham.



The Mind of the Universe

The Mind of the Universe Author Mariano Artigas
ISBN-10 IND:30000116720677
Release 2000
Pages 364
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The Mind of the Universe, written by a philosopher and physicist, provides a study in which a competent presentation of physical discoveries is combined with a rational search for philosophical presuppositions of science. An important contribution to the dialogue between religion and science, it will inspire new attempts at bridging science and philosophy in their common search for the hidden meaning of the new scientific theories.



This Phenomenal Life

This Phenomenal Life Author Misha Blaise
ISBN-10 9781493028511
Release 2017-03-01
Pages 144
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Entertaining, colorful, and deceptively full of facts, This Phenomenal Life tells the story of the wondrous ways that humans are always completely at one with our surrounding world. From the vast galaxies above to the miniature microbes within, humans are organically connected to the complex cycles and mysterious processes of our universe. Every single atom of our body is made of remnants of stars and massive explosions in the galaxies, and we share the same biochemical basis of life with all living beings on earth, from a single-celled amoeba to a giant blue whale. Whimsically hip illustrations elucidate wild science-based facts, from the unexpected intimacy we have with fungi on a daily basis, to the similar ways that humans and birds learn to communicate. Powerful evidence of our interconnection with nature combined with beautiful artwork will inspire the reader to look at the world in a whole new way.



The Sleepwalkers

The Sleepwalkers Author Arthur Koestler
ISBN-10 9780141394541
Release 2017-02-23
Pages 624
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Arthur Koestler's extraordinary history of humanity's changing vision of the universe In this masterly synthesis, Arthur Koestler cuts through the sterile distinction between 'sciences' and 'humanities' to bring to life the whole history of cosmology from the Babylonians to Newton. He shows how the tragic split between science and religion arose and how, in particular, the modern world-view replaced the medieval world-view in the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century. He also provides vivid and judicious pen-portraits of a string of great scientists and makes clear the role that political bias and unconscious prejudice played in their creativity.



The Creative Spark

The Creative Spark Author Agustín Fuentes
ISBN-10 9781101983959
Release 2017-03-21
Pages 336
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A bold new synthesis of paleontology, archaeology, genetics, and anthropology that overturns misconceptions about race, war and peace, and human nature itself, answering an age-old question: What made humans so exceptional among all the species on Earth? Creativity. It is the secret of what makes humans special, hiding in plain sight. Agustín Fuentes argues that your child's finger painting comes essentially from the same place as creativity in hunting and gathering millions of years ago, and throughout history in making war and peace, in intimate relationships, in shaping the planet, in our communities, and in all of art, religion, and even science. It requires imagination and collaboration. Every poet has her muse; every engineer, an architect; every politician, a constituency. The manner of the collaborations varies widely, but successful collaboration is inseparable from imagination, and it brought us everything from knives and hot meals to iPhones and interstellar spacecraft. Weaving fascinating stories of our ancient ancestors' creativity, Fuentes finds the patterns that match modern behavior in humans and animals. This key quality has propelled the evolutionary development of our bodies, minds, and cultures, both for good and for bad. It's not the drive to reproduce; nor competition for mates, or resources, or power; nor our propensity for caring for one another that have separated us out from all other creatures. As Fuentes concludes, to make something lasting and useful today you need to understand the nature of your collaboration with others, what imagination can and can't accomplish, and, finally, just how completely our creativity is responsible for the world we live in. Agustín Fuentes's resounding multimillion-year perspective will inspire readers—and spark all kinds of creativity.



The Allies of Humanity Book Three

The Allies of Humanity Book Three Author Marshall Vian Summers
ISBN-10 9781884238383
Release 2013-09-28
Pages
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The Allies of Humanity Book Three: A Message to Earth presents the third set of “Briefings” from a mysterious off-planet source whose stated purpose is to orient the human family to the realities of life in our local universe and to alert us to a dangerous Intervention now occurring here on Earth. The Allies of Humanity Briefings are a genuine communication from a group claiming to represent the “free races” in our local region of space. The Allies distinguish themselves from those races who are intervening in the world today. They warn us against the presence of this Intervention, insisting that no foreign race should be visiting our world, either now or in the future, until humanity has gained the strength, unity and maturity necessary to engage successfully with a Greater Community of intelligent life in the universe. Whether humanity can ever attain this is uncertain, yet the Allies tell us that intervention in our world has already begun by several non-military races seeking to establish their influence and dominance in our world through deceptive and persuasive means. The Briefings reveal that we are in the unfortunate position of being the race who is being discovered. History has taught us the danger and the tragedy that native peoples faced when they encountered outside forces for the first time. Now we are all the natives of a new world, and the threat of Intervention is upon us. As a result, the Allies are calling for us to build enough human unity amongst the tribes, nations and religions of Earth so that we may protect our freedom in a non-human universe. Marshall Vian Summers received this unique communication from the Allies of Humanity in a state of revelation beginning in November 1997. In the years since, the Allies of Humanity have delivered three sets of Briefings. The Allies of Humanity Book Three represents their most recent communication to Earth. With the Allies Briefings, for the first time, we are being given a window into the reality of life beyond our world, a view that we would never have otherwise. This creates a greater context for understanding why the Intervention is occurring, who is generating it and what humanity will need to know to preserve and build human freedom and sovereignty so that we can fulfill our destiny as a free race in the universe.