Browsing All Posts filed under »Uncategorized«

Morality and Mathematics

August 18, 2018


I have a vivid memory from my first or second year of college when discussing mathematics with an older student. I don’t remember the specific topic, but at one point he pointed out to me that mathematical truths are only true relative to particular axioms and definitions that we have assumed, and that they are […]

The Origins of Entropy

September 8, 2016


One of the unsolved mysteries of modern physical cosmology is explaining how the universe began in a low entropy state. From within the context of physics, an explanation can only be traced backward in time. To look deeper, one must seek an explanation for the origin of entropy itself. This, as it turns out, is […]

Questioning the Scientific Worldview

June 21, 2001


Thomas J. McFarlane Center Voice: Summer-Fall¬†2001 Most of us were raised with the idea that reality is the material cosmos. We were all taught that there is a real external world “out there” containing rocks, atoms, cells, animals, plants, etc., and that this material world is all there is. As Carl Sagan tells us […]

Nicholas of Cusa and the Infinite

March 23, 1999


Thomas J. McFarlane 23 March 1999 Revised and edited for the web March 2004 ABSTRACT: Nicholas of Cusa (1401-64) was a philosopher and theologian whose writings influenced the development of Renaissance mathematics and science. The first part of this paper will trace the historical development in the West of thought about the Infinite prior to […]

Simone Weil on studying as a spiritual practice

October 2, 1995


Excerpted from Simone Weil,¬†Waiting for God, pp. 105-116: The development of the faculty of attention forms the real object and almost the sole interest of studies. . .Never in any case whatever is a genuine effort of the attention wasted. It always has its effect on the spiritual plane. . .If we concentrate our attention […]

Unified Theories in Science and Religion

January 1, 1994


Introduction Just as a unified theory of everything in physics would show how complementary theories of physics are compatible, a more comprehensive understanding of religious concepts would show how many complementary religious concepts are compatible. Even if we don’t yet see how apparently contradictory views can be harmonized, we need to have faith that this […]

A Short Exposition on Dimensions and Fractal Dimensions

June 30, 1993


Thomas J. McFarlane Dimensions A dimension is a direction of freedom. We speak of space as having three dimensions because there are three independent directions in which we are free to move and because positions in space can be specified by exactly three measurements. A surface, such as sphere, has two dimensions because there are […]