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The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos is Designed for Discovery
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Today, most scientists and philosophers claim that Earth is an ordinary speck of dust adrift, without purpose or significance, in a vast cosmic sea.
This idea (popularized by the late astronomer Carl Sagan) is an outgrowth of the naturalistic philosophy that has dominated science for the past 150 years. Yet, remarkable evidenceunveiled by contemporary astronomy and physicsmay now tell a very different story.
Building upon the overwhelming success of Unlocking the Mystery of Life (widely acclaimed as the most effective refutation of Darwinian theory ever produced), this hour-long documentary explores the scientific evidence for intelligent design and purpose in the universe. In the process, Earth is revealed as far more than the product of time, chance, and random natural processes.
We now know that a rare and finely-tuned array of factors makes Earth suitable for complex life. We depend on our planet's oxygen-rich atmosphere, its large moon, its planetary neighbors, and its precise location within the solar system and Milky Way galaxy. But the story does not end here. For the same factors that make a planet like Earth hospitable to life also provide the best conditions for scientific discovery.
Is this correlation merely a coincidence? Or does it point to a deeper truth about the purpose of the cosmos and the reality of a transcendent designer? The answer could dramatically affect 21st century science.
Through stunning computer animation, interviews with leading scientists, and spectacular images of Earth and the cosmos, The Privileged Planet explores a startling connection between our capacity to survive and our ability to observe and understand the universe. A connection that points directly to the work of a creative mind and plan.
This extraordinary documentary will be a focal point in the excalating debate between evolution and design.
In this provocative book, readers are taken on a scientific odyssey from a history of tectonic plates, the wonders of water, and solar eclipses, to our location in the Milky Way, the laws that govern the universe, and the beginning of cosmic time.
You will discover:
In a book of magnificent sweep and daring, Guillermo Gonzalez and Jay Richards drive home the argument that the old cliché of no place like home is eerily true of Earth. Not only that, but if the scientific method were to emerge anywhere, Earth is about as suitable as you can get.
"This new book is an excellent and timely
contribution to the broadening and increasingly important discussion
"Privileged Planet is simply a beautifully
written piece of work: so lucid and compelling in its presentation
that even the most lay of laypersons will fly through its pages,
barely able to put the book down. And when is the last time that
hard science has delivered such an optimistic, even joyful message?
For Gonzalez and Richards have made the incontrovertible case
that this earth of ours is not just some flyspeck of inconsequentiality
in a meaningless universe, but holds a rare, even honored place,
and that we, its inhabitants, are especially privileged to be
Dr. Gonzalez has extensive experience in observing and analyzing data from ground-based observatories, including work at McDonald Observatory, Apache Point Observatory and Cerro Tololo Interamerican Observatory. He has also published over sixty articles in refereed astronomy and astrophysical journals including Astronomy and Astrophysics, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Astrophysical Journal and Solar Physics. His current research interest in astrobiology focuses on the "Galactic Habitable Zone" and captured the October 2001 cover story of Scientific American.
Another area of his research is focused on analyzing and interpreting ground-based photometric and spectroscopic observations of low and intermediate mass stars in relation to current theories concerning the late stages of stellar evolution and the formation and evolution of planetary systems.
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