Jim Holt

Why Does the World Exist?

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'Why is there a world rather than nothing at all?' remains the most curious and most enduring of all metaphysical mysteries. Moving away from the narrower paths of Christopher Hitchens, Roger Penrose and Stephen Hawking, the celebrated essayist Jim Holt now enters this fascinating debate with his broad, lively and deeply informed narrative that traces all our efforts to grasp the origins of the universe.

With sly humour and a highly original personal approach Holt takes on the role of cosmological detective. Suggesting that we might have been too narrow in limiting our suspects to God and the Big Bang, he tracks down, among others, an eccentric Oxford philosopher, a Nobel Laureate physicist, a French Buddhist monk, and John Updike just before he died, to pursue this cosmic puzzle from every angle. As he pieces together a solution – while offering useful insights into time, consciousness, and eternity – he sheds fascinating new light on the meaning of existence.

A New York Times bestseller on first publication, this new paperback edition provides a much-needed new take on history's greatest conundrum, in the vein of previous bestsellers like Michael Brooks' 13 Things that Don't Make Sense.

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430 printed pages


    Simon Dunlopshared an impression7 years ago
    💡Learnt A Lot

    Loving this book - clear and smart. Take some time out to think..

    b0964298531shared an impressionlast year



    Lesha Ivanovskyhas quoted8 years ago
    Some years earlier, in the notebooks he kept as a soldier in the Austrian army during the First World War, Wittgenstein wrote in the entry of October 26, 1916, “Aesthetically, the miracle is that the world exists.” (Later that day, he made the entry, “Life is serious, art is gay”—this while fighting on the Russian front.)
    Eyad Abu Awadhas quoted6 years ago
    It has been said that the question
    Игорь Климовhas quoted6 years ago
    If you turn on your television and tune it between stations, about 10 percent of that black-and-white speckled static you see is caused by photons left over from the birth of the universe. What greater proof of the reality of the Big Bang—you can watch it on TV.

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