Mod+ Transcending Matter: Physics and Ultimate Meaning


From the discovery of new galaxies and nearly undetectable dark energy to the quantum entanglement of particles across the universe, new findings in physics naturally elicit a sense of awe and wonder. For the founders of modern physics — from Einstein and Bohr to Heisenberg, Pauli, and Bohm — a fascination with deeper questions of meaning and ultimate reality led some of them to explore esoteric traditions and metaphysics. More recently, however, physicists have largely shunned such philosophical and spiritual associations. What can contemporary physics offer us in the quest to understand our place in the universe? Has physics in some ways become a religion unto itself that rejects the search for existential meaning?

Featuring astrophysicists Adam Frank and Priyamvada Natarajan, historian of science David Kaiser, and philosopher of physics Tim Maudlin. Hosted by Steve Paulson.