Monday, November 20, 2006

The long awaited book review

It's about time I'm giving you the review on the best available book on natural philosophy around at the moment, Science before Science by Dr Anthony Rizzi (Press of The Institute for Advanced Physics). The subtitle he has chosen is A Guide to Thinking in the 21st Century, which isn't an overstatement.
On the Amazon review site I have written to the effect that 1. every living being with a immaterial soul should read this book; 2. the road to Wisdom is worth travelling; 3. the crux of the subject matter is, the awareness not to confuse the hardware with the software, which you might think obvious, but you'd be surprised how many serious scientists keep forgetting.
It is not an easy book to digest, but Wisdom isn't instant and comes at a price. But then Dr Rizzi is a brilliant scientist who contributed to Albert Einstein's theory of general relativity by formulating the definition of angular momentum. In 2003 he founded The Institute for Advanced Physics. His c.v. is readily available on the site.
I am writing at length about this book as it is of the utmost importance for the contemporary discourse, if not because of the offences that are committed against Reason, sometimes with hilarious results, other times with disastrous consequences.
It is certainly not the only point Dr Rizzi is making, but for me the crux of the matter is not to confuse the thermometer with the temperature, and that the physical world and censorial perception must be the starting point of any train of thought, whatever the subject matter. Otherwise the outcome is of the realm of Idealism, giving rise to all matter of error.
To one such mistake Albert Einstein once remarked "Do you really believe the world is not there, when you're not looking at it?". That's the sort of thing we're talking about (not to mention the two membranes and thirties parallel universes I've seen tabled recently by serious scientific sources). But also the very thought that if something exists only potentially, it does in fact not exist at all (see my recent post on the Irish court case involving frozen embryos). Natural philosophy learns that Being is Prime and there IS such a thing as Truth, contrary to what followers of Relativism think (each his own truth and who are we to pronounce judgment on an other's).
This book marks for me personally the end of the era of nihilism and cynicism, which is a disaster for the world and a tragedy for humanity. It is reminding us of the richness and depth of Western civilization, a culture which has given us the arts, Reason, Christianity and science and which has shaped our mentality over 2500 years, only to fly off the rails at the event of post-modernity. After the experiments of the last forty odd years it's about time we went back and claimed our heritage. We are greatly in Dr Rizzi's debt for reminding us and I hope Science before Science sells well, truckloads at a time.

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