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'The ability to perceive or think differently is more important than the knowledge gained.'
(David Bohm)

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Friday, 19 February 2010

‘Lost’ philosophy.
Destiny vs Free Will.

'There is no purpose to life, but it’s not an accident.' — Richard Dawkins.

Statue of Taweret
Statue of Taweret.
What I like about ‘Lost’ is that it’s the kind of science fiction that has some ideas apart from action-packed sequences and convoluted plot, the leitmotif being whether the Oceanic flight 815 crashed by accident or design. Regardless what the creators idea was, it’s a classical question of causality and blind chance.
When Locke asks Sawyer why he thinks he got to the island, the latter grumbled that his plane happened to crash, then because his raft blew up, because the helicopter couldn’t carry extra weight, etc. To which Locke/the Monster answers, ‘That’s not why you are here’.

— Why are you on this island?
— I’m on this island because my plane crashed, because my raft blew up, because the helicopter I was on was riding one too heavy.
— That’s not why you are here.

Similar questions have been posed in Thornton Wilder’s THE BRIDGE OF SAN LUIS REY, where the characters were doomed to meet their deaths in the collapse of the bridge as a logical outcome of their lives and personalities. "Is there a direction and meaning in lives beyond the individual's own will?" was the question posed by the author, which is basically fate vs. free will. As a matter of fact, every time a number of people die or get injured in an accident a mind-boggling question raises its ugly head — did some superior force make it happen accidentally on purpose?

Some people believe there’s a cause for everything; others say it’s just a blind chance. Personally I’m inclined to think that chance is an unperceived necessity.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Is Time Travel Possible?
Science or Science Fiction?

'Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. THAT'S relativity.' A. Einstein

One of quite a few unsolved problems in physics is whether it is possible to time travel, but are there really any solved problems or it’s just an illusion? For most people time travel is a common plot device in science fiction, although I’ve always considered travel to the past a sort of Deus Ex Machina, since it doesn’t make much sense to me. Conversely, the possibility of time travel to the future is arguably deducible from special and general relativities based on the phenomenon of gravitational and time dilation linked to the speed of the observer.
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