Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion


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Revision history. Google Books no proxy Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server Configure custom proxy use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy. Configure custom resolver. Modern Physics and Problems of Knowledge. Paul M.

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How Has Jewish Thought Influenced Science?

Michel Janssen - unknown. Einstein and the Most Beautiful Theories in Physics. It seems almost perverse that Steven Gimbel, the chairman of the philosophy department at Gettysburg College, would want to bring back the old epithet and give it another spin. By casting Einstein as a philosophical anarchist, the Nazis missed the heart of his idea. Length contracts and time slows as an object speeds through space.

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But they have to in order to preserve what is truly absolute: the speed of light. Suppose Martians are watching us.


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Because light travels at a fixed velocity, what they are seeing from their perspective took place here about four minutes ago. If they could outrun the light beams bringing them the news, they could arrive before an event occurred — prevent the invasion of Poland, the attack on Pearl Harbor or the dropping of the atomic bomb. Einstein, Gimbel argues, was especially well put to come upon such insights because he was a Jew. Gimbel is not saying that Einstein was deeply religious.

But Gimbel is an engaging writer. In demonstrating the obvious, he takes readers on enlightening excursions through the nature of Judaism, Hegelian philosophy, wherever his curiosity leads. Instead of trekking through nature like a robust German scout, with magnifying glass and telescope in his rucksack, he sat alone in his room scribbling numbers like a shut-in.

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Experiment and observation come first, providing the data that the theorists then seek to explain. View all New York Times newsletters. In fact, Lenard was falling behind the time.

As the 20th century progressed, theory was often driving experiment — predicting from the logic of the equations phenomena for the experimenters to confirm. But there was nothing particularly Jewish about that.

They were imaginary but in principle they could be done: trains flashing signals back and forth, an elevator hurtling down a shaft or floating through space. It comes only in glimpses. It depends. Did you see the person who might have dropped it? In a hotel lobby with a lost and found?

From our blinkered perspective we see qualities called space and time. But in relativity theory, the two can be combined mathematically into something more fundamental: a four-dimensional abstraction called the space-time interval. Time and space vary according to the motion of the observer.

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In any case, someone like Lenard could not have made such leaps. His German physics, with its constipated view of science, was becoming as anachronistic as his politics. Tell us what you think.

Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion
Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion
Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion
Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion
Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion Einsteins Jewish Science: Physics at the Intersection of Politics and Religion

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