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God and the New Physics

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  1,083 ratings  ·  76 reviews
How did the universe begin and how will it end?
What is matter?
What is mind, and can it survive death?
What are time and space, and how do they relate to ideas about God?
Is the order of the universe the result of accident or design?
The most profound and age-old questions of existence -- for centuries the focus of religion and philosophy -- may soon be answered through
...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published October 16th 1984 by Simon Schuster (first published 1983)
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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Manny
Celebrity Death Match Special: God and the New Physics versus The Rocky Horror Picture Show

Scene 1

[MIT, 2012. Graduation day. BRAD and JANET]

JANET: Oh Brad, wasn't it wonderful! Didn't Betty look radiantly beautiful! Just an hour ago she was plain old Betty Monroe. Now she's Betty Monroe... PhD!

BRAD: Er... yeah.

JANET: I wonder if I'll ever complete my doctoral dissertation on the relationship between faith and cosmology? Sometimes it seems impossible.

[She wipes a tear from her eye. Music starts
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Menglong Youk
Jan 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
After finishing reading this book, I had to read it again immediately, not because I love it, which I arguably kind of do, but because I remembered nothing; therefore, I would not be able to give the book a fair review.

Despite being written in 1984, "God and the New Physics" by Paul Davies is not out of date as the questions which it posed have not been answered yet. This book tries to relate the concept on God in theology to the new physics consisted of the theories of relativity and quantum me
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Hazel
Jan 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Quite excited about this book. There's so much stuff in here that I've always wanted to know about, mainly regarding quantum physics and relativity. And Hawking somehow never did it for me. I now know for example that time doesn't really exist... or well it does actually, but there's no such thing as "the past" or "the future". Particularly enlightening also is the chapter that describes life as a holistic system that does not make sense when merely studied at particle level. And then there is t ...more
White
Sep 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Davies makes a convincing attempt to bring God into the nature of physics in this book, rather than the religious approach of bringing the nature of physics into God. (Or is it the other way around?)

This is a great book that describes the details of our universe as something that wraps around us and in us and as us, rather than something we are observing. A hydrogen atom is the same in a droplet of water as it is and always was across lightyears of the universe and 10 billion years ago, 10 billi
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Amy
Mar 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was a really great book for someone who is has ever asked questions like why are we here and how might science be able to explain or pose further questions about religion and its "truth". I really like how Paul Davies breaks things down and tries to answers questions about the universe and physics in regard to God and religion. He never attacks but uses logic and clear arguments to give the reader as a well-rounded an answer as possible. I really enjoyed the parts where he had a skeptic and ...more
Michael
Jul 08, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful!!

See God as the incredible-shrinking man!!

As science grows and matures, religion and gods play smaller roles in people's lives.

God and the New Physics shows how the "God in the Gaps" argument can be utilised to prove God's possible existence.

The depiction of the recent finding in physics is breathtaking!
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Suzanne
Jul 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book takes mysticism and gives it a scientific foundation that even the most skeptical can consider and still remain within the confines of pure scientific thought. Paul Davies addresses age old issues of the supernatural and religion and brings them together under one roof; physics. Provocative.
Mitzi
Jan 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spirituality
This book is a fascinating look at how Physics is influencing our view of the origins of our existence, and our universe. It doesn't give any definitive answers to the "big questions" though - science isn't quite there, yet... ...more
Christian Blunden
Aug 28, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pop-science
Read this a long time ago during university. Great mind opening stuff on the edges of scientific understanding and religion.
Achilleas
Aug 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
read it when I was 14 years old. it changes my whole view on physics. amazing book.
Charles
Jul 15, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
It certainly gave me some food for thought.
Aastha Mehta
Apr 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this thought-provoking book, Paul Davies attempts to answer some questions which lie at the heart of theology and philosophy. Does God exist and if so, can you prove this existence through laws of nature?
With a clear insight into the fundamental functionings of the Universe, the book embarks upon a journey from describing how the universe came into being, whether our universe as we know it was always like this and where are we heading to.

Even though the book was written in 1984, the questio
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RS Rook
Jun 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
I think this is my favorite Paul Davies book yet. So many fascinating concepts are raised. It does not provide much in the way of answers, but as Davies states in the book the purpose of the work is shifting the framework of theological inquiry into the scope of scientific thought.

Atheists interested in physics will appreciate the arguments Davies presents regarding God being unnecessary in an ordered universe. However, his arguments are fundamentally dependent on arguing against Judeo-Christian
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Justin Karp
Jan 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Not a bad book. This book may be slightly threatening to a Christian theologian; but for a for a religious Jewish mind, it’s quite intriguing. This book focuses on the new and upcoming physics which includes holistic ideas such as quantum theory and the quest to search for the ultimate all encompassing theory to explain all of physics. What’s new from the reductionist trend of physics besides what I just mentioned is the idea the universe we know may not be what we originally thought. Holistic i ...more
David Radavich
Aug 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The world of physics has advanced enormously and excitingly in recently decades. Paul Davies has written a masterful book that lays out this dizzying universe of quarks, leptons, black holes, spacetime curvature, gravitational waves, and much else. As the NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW says, "the concepts are breathtaking. . . ." Davies' discussion of God is less convincing, but I admire his courage in taking theological issues on. I also basically agree with the position he appears to come to in th ...more
Miles Trujillo
Nov 27, 2017 rated it liked it
This book is a systematic overview of the relation between science and theology. It explains how science is being used to corroborate and improve on classical christian doctrine. If you look at the date, it is obviously dated, but I would still recommend it as an introductory text to the topic at hand. Davies is fairly evenhanded, and offers an accessible source of the prevailing ways that faith is being syncretized with science.
A.
Jan 29, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
"Religious adherents have learned to their cost how perilous it is to point to a phenomenon and say 'That is evidence of God's work' only to find that scientific advances subsequently provide a perfectly adequate explanation. To invoke God as a blanket explanation of the unexplained is to invite eventual falsification, and to make God the friend of ignorance. If God is to be found, it must surely be through what we discover about the world, not what we fail to discover." (p. 209) ...more
James Wells
Apr 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Amazing dive into the latest theories in physics that help describe the universe. The author incorporating (what feels like) an unbiased and even argument weighing the implications of a creator having a role in forming this universe when considering these new models.
Euroyank
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent. Exactly what I wanted to read while star gazing on a sailboat in the middle of nowhere.
Mariangela
May 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
it changed my life
Lovely Beads
Jul 17, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: popüler-bilim
Find it objective.Did not understand the author is teist,atheist or agnostic till the end of the book.
Kevin Dedes
Oct 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Loved it! Not entirely sure how accurate it still is (it was published in 1986), but the content is great. Written for lay people, Davies tries his best to make some of the concepts understandable, although quantum theory, time, and some others are still pretty mind-bending. Also a great book in line with a 'Third Culture' that examines the false dichotomy between 'science' and 'art' (and religion). ...more
Anat
Mar 06, 2017 rated it liked it
"If God is to be found, it must surely be through what we discover about the world, not what we fail to discover." ...more
S.Ach
Oct 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favourites, science
After many days of deep thinking, finally it boils down to only one question, "Does God exist?" The answer to this question is clearly, still unknown. Whoever claims to know the answer, whether theist or atheist, ask him three or four fundamental questions, that would expose their bumbling limitations. Theists will back their irrefutable on 'It's all about faith' and atheists(scientific bent) would take refuge on "We are working on it".
Religion, Philosophy and Science - any or all of these route
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Aaron
Nov 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
God and the New Physics sits on my shelf as a book that I picked up at a book sale which I purchased on the strength of the title. Also, it wasn't the first book I had come across debating the existence of God and the meaning and role of religion in light of modern science. When I finally got around to sitting behind the pages, I was not left unfulfilled. I found the content stimulating and engaging.

Coming to the conclusion that the complete understanding of physics, be it on the quantum level
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Hasham Ahmad
Sep 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Well this was no walk in the park. It approaches fundamental questions of philosophy, existence and creation in the framework of new physics in quite some technical detail. It is perfectly normal for developments in science to impact on beliefs, in fact some might say that it has shaped modern Western thinking for some time and understandably driven a wedge between science and conventional religion. So there have been few attempts to reconcile these two subjects into a holistic point of view whi ...more
Kimwyl
Dec 08, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is one of several books that Davies has written about the impact of science on religious belief and specifically on the existence of God. As he tells us in his Preface, he addresses four questions. Why are the laws of nature what they are? Why does the universe consist of the things it does? How did those things arise? How did the universe achieve its organization?

Davies makes the pretty bold claim that science offers a surer path to God than does religion. However, the God that might be su
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Jef
Sep 19, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
...religion is founded on revelation and received wisdom. Religious dogma that claims to contain unalterable Truth can hardly be modified to fit changing ideas. The true believer must stand by his faith whatever the evidence against it.
However astonishing and inexplicable a particular occurrence may be, we can never be absolutely sure that at some distant time in the future a natural phenomenon will not be discovered to explain it.
After demolishing the ontological and teleological arguments for
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Federico
Jan 03, 2013 rated it it was ok
Paul Davies is always a fascinating writer. This book though has been disappointing, because many difficult topics are presented very briefly and cannot be understood without a previous knowledge of them. For example, I had no problem understanding the paradoxes of time distortion, but I didn't really get many explanations about quantum physics. On the other side, most parts of the book treat philosophical/religious topics, which are even too straightforward.
I overall enjoyed reading this book.
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Paul Charles William Davies AM is a British-born physicist, writer and broadcaster, currently a professor at Arizona State University as well as the Director of BEYOND: Center for Fundamental Concepts in Science. He has held previous academic appointments at the University of Cambridge, University of London, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, University of Adelaide and Macquarie University. His re ...more

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