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A Tear at the Edge of Creation: A Radical New Vision for Life in an Imperfect Universe
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A Tear at the Edge of Creation: A Radical New Vision for Life in an Imperfect Universe

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  250 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
For millennia, shamans and philosophers, believers and nonbelievers, artists and scientists have tried to make sense of our existence by suggesting that everything is connected, that a mysterious Oneness binds us to everything else. People go to temples, churches, mosques, and synagogues to pray to their divine incarnation of Oneness. Following a surprisingly similar notio ...more
Hardcover, 285 pages
Published April 6th 2010 by Free Press (first published 2010)
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Jun 29, 2011 rated it did not like it
The first chapter is riddled with theistic bull twankey.
The (silly) argument from the first cause, for example.
Also, the (false) assertion that to be without being a part of a divine plan, mankind has no purpose.

The second chapter is about, I'm not kidding, Vampires....

Chapter 5: Gleiser talks shit about Dawkins, Hitchens, and Harris, calling them "extremists".

Chapter 7: Gleiser compares Ionian "oneness" with the modern goal of unification between the forces. As if the stumbling nonsense of Gree
Erica Miles
Jan 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I cannot hope to do this book justice. I am deeply humbled by the author’s talent, knowledge, and communicative skills. However, I can say that listening to it as an Audio book lifted me to a higher plane of consciousness for several hours, during which time, I was released from my usual petty concerns and self-centeredness, as I contemplated the majesty of the Universe, the history of science--mainly Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and even Science Fiction, with Mathematics explained as a tool for ...more
Aug 15, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gleiser has made an incredible point in this book- one that I hadn’t heard before. The relationship between humans and creation has always been one of rift, devastating uncertainty, and the passionate search for the meaning of it all. Generally speaking, the arguments are fairly dichotomous; supernatural or all natural. God reigns over the former half and science over the latter. The two seem worlds apart (no pun intended) however, Gleiser argues that the search for the Ultimate Truth, in either ...more
Jul 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The books I've been reading lately have been to help me learn about the universe and our place in it. This book has helped in that goal better than any other single book I've read in the past year or so.

He starts with a theory that beauty comes from imperfection and the theories of everything need a perfect universe to make sense and our real understanding comes about realizing the imperfections in nature and that the universe is imperfect. He goes on to explain how it takes imperfections and bi
Mar 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: physics
This book had a rough start. I am tired of debates about science vs religion. I am even more tired of scientists trying to pander to overly sensitive, non critical religious types. It really anchors the discussion and doesn't allow the discussion to soar. However, once the business of kissing up to religious types was done, this book was extremely good. I loved to read all the opposing views in physics (Lisa Randall's dimensions of space, Max Tegmark's Mathematical Universe, etc). I don't necess ...more
Jonna Higgins-Freese
I had high hopes, but most of it I already knew. I think it was written for a different audience than me. I'm not offended by the notion that everything might not hang together/make sense; I'm not philosophically tied to the idea of a theory of everything for my sense of meaningfulness in life. So much of his comforting talk that was designed to get more skeptical/frightened readers through was just annoying to me. That our existence is probably an accident based on the extremely rare/unlikely f ...more
Jan 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I believe this is a slightly updated edition of Tear at the Edge of Creation. It has a different ISBN, more pages and a different cover, so I've added it to the library.
This is a great book. As with Quantum Theory Cannot Hurt You, I will probably end up reading it again. In fact between these two books, a reader who is curious about how the world fits together (from quantum mechanics to evolution) will be well armed after reading them. I'm not big on big reviews, I will simply say that if you're
Warren Wallace
Feb 08, 2012 rated it liked it
A rehashing of the history of physics with a self serving slant. No new information for someone familiar with the subject.
Oct 28, 2015 rated it did not like it
I actually couldn't finish this. The author's new-agey voice is grating. It may be that I just disagree with the author, but I found it really difficult to continue reading.
Jan 10, 2015 rated it it was ok
The main notion of this book is that science in general (and physics/cosmology in specific) is fixated on trying to find unified theories that are beautifully elegant and simple. There's a belief that there must be a simplest, unified form from which all natural laws spring, if only we could understand it.

Gleiser's argument is that perhaps it's time to give up on this idea; To get past the notion that the universe must inherently make sense and that all forces must be tied together by some uniti
Imperfect Creation by Marcelo Gleiser and The Grand Design by Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow

Marcelo Gleiser in his book Imperfect Creation has attempted to reconcile science with god, something that leaves a rather bitter taste in my obviously biased mouth. His attempts are disguised loosely in a shroud of science but unfortunately it seems Gleiser stopped researching scientific theory in the 1980's at some point and has failed to keep up with modern discovery which puts him at serious dis
Jan 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This seems to be the Australian edition of a book published in the US as "A Tear at the Edge of Creation: Searching for the Meaning of Life in an Imperfect Cosmos".

I have only 53 pages to go so hardly think that I will change my mind about this book.

Though I am incompetent to judge the author's arguments, given that the book is a philosophical discussion of cosmology and the origin of life, I think it is much to the author's credit that I just about understood most of what I read and was persua
Marcos Oliveira
Jul 05, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Primeiro livro do Gleiser que li, e acho que deve ser lido como forma de introdução, para aqueles que pretendem ler livros do Stephen Hawking. A abordagem mais leve, didática, e sem as extensas e complicadas formulas de química/ matemática/física, ajuda a leitura a ser fluida, e os exemplos da própria vida do Marcelo ajudam a gerar uma intimidade com o conteúdo.
Mas acredito que a parte mais importante do livro de Gleiser, é a forma com que ele utiliza todas essas explicações sobre o cosmo, surg
Sep 25, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Um ensaio interessante sobre a importância da compreensão da assimetria e no desenvolvimento de leis físicas como as conhecemos. É uma visão mais complexa e, aparentemente, mais completa que a visão clássica geômetra - não muito alardeada pelos profissionais da área física, mas muito discutida pelo senso comum.
Obviamente que o nome do livro é mais comercial que acadêmico. Principalmente o "código oculto da natureza", dado que, se este código existe ele foi "inserido" apenas uma vez e teve seu pa
Chimezie Ogbuji
Jul 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is an excellent book about the dogma underlying scientists who try to replace religion with the desire to find a unifying principle behind all of nature and on an alternative motivation for science based on a more humble understanding of how the universe and life on the planet was formed. The argument is very well supported and developed. The only downside is the heavy emphasis on particle and quantum physics details which are a bit much and even boring for the non-theoretical physicist.
Mar 24, 2013 rated it liked it
It's an ok book but I was disappointed. About halfway through it becomes poorly written, doesn't flow well, too much autobiographical content (sorry but I don't care what your career aspirations were when you were 14), repetitive and jumps around a lot. I feel like he could have expanded on and explained his ideas better. If you've read other physics books this one prob won't give you much new to chew on and it's not radical. But I do like his overall point that a Theory of Everything isn't nece ...more
Christian Dechery
May 18, 2010 rated it liked it
At first this seemed like a very good book, with a solid argument: the Universe and life are basic assymetric. They both resulted from imperefections. While trying to put a theoric foundation to this, the author, which I admire, gets lost in too many details making it a very boring read for the lame public - myself included. On the other hand, Gleiser has come to be a gifted writer which is rare among the "nerdy" crowd of physicists.
Apr 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
Recommended to David by: Rod Rodriguez
Today, I'm about half-way through Gleiser's book and again, as I've said in other notes, I both agree and disagree. I have yet to fully in whether he thinks reality is fully inconsistent in and of itself or if he is pointing at doubting in the human ability to take hold of the fullness of reality. Nonetheless, I recommend this work to everyone interested in pushing aside expectations.

By the time I'd finished Gleiser's work I had deepened my contradictory enjoyment of his work.
Dec 07, 2010 is currently reading it
This book as an amazingly approachable read for its topic matter. the thesis is intriguing, but most of all for me, it is a great synopsis of the the leading theories related to how our cosmos was formed and how life emerged on our planet. the book is dense enough to do the theories justice yet can be understood by a reader with only basic high school knowledge of chemistry biology and physics
David Dort
Feb 12, 2011 rated it liked it
Brilliant and unexpected moments of Gleiser's asymmetric are convoluted by a clumsy delivery. His overarching theme is refreshing: we need no perfect symmetry or unified theory and no theology...the unusual properties of particle physics that led to the growth of the universe and subsequently apogenisis are exceptionally rare enough to embrace and protect and propagate life with all our energy.
Ryan Casey
Jun 15, 2015 rated it it was ok
Took me forever to get through. I found I least understood what I thought I knew well enough and absolutely couldn't stand his writing style by the end. I'm mad at wasting my time when I could have been reading another book. He did do a nice job of explaining some things that I had previously not understood like the Higgs.
Feb 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Amazing book! Nicely summarizes the achievements of cosmology up till today, pointing out our knowledge gaps and prospects to the future. Creation is not perfect, and truth is not beauty and harmony...Easy to read, powerful analysis of scientific quest and its relevance to everyone's life...
Jul 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Very unpromising start. Set up expectation that book would devolve into series of new age science/philosophy musings. A few chapters in, though, became quite rigorous (as popular science treatments go) and highly thought provoking. Overall a very interesting book.
Jul 02, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science
Interesting, but a bit scattered. Going from physics to evolution and biology to make his point was a bit distracting and just left me feeling bored rather than enlightened.
Ítalo Borges
Dec 17, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excelente abordagem, priorizando, ao máximo, o entendimento dos conceitos físicos por meio de inteligentíssimas analogias. Manteve o nível alto dos livros anteriores. Muito bom mesmo!
Osmar Mantovani
Dec 15, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
Indicação do Joaquim (Porto - 2MA - 2010)
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Rafael Ando
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Mary Thompson
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May 04, 2016
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“Creation, in all its splendor and misery, in all the beauty and ugliness of its myriad forms, is how God manifests His presence in time. Creation is God in time.” 0 likes
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