Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Peter Higgs


Peter Higgs criticises Richard Dawkins over anti-religious ‘fundamentalism’

, science correspondent. The Guardian, Wednesday 26 December 2012 18.58 GMT

As public disagreements go, few can have boasted such heavy-hitting antagonists.

Richard Dawkins, the celebrated biologist, has made a second career demonstrating his epic disdain for religion.

The theoretical physicist Peter Higgs (Higgs boson particle) who this year became a shoo-in for a future Nobel prize after scientists at Cern in Geneva showed that his theory about how fundamental particles get their mass was correct.

(Can’t figure out this allegation or conclusion attributed to Cern: It’s None of its business)

Their argument is over nothing less than the coexistence of religion and science.

(That’s Not a new argument: Science and religion did Not Co-exist: they were anathema and harvested thousands of lives by the religious clerics)

Higgs has chosen to cap his remarkable 2012 with another bang by criticising the “fundamentalist” approach taken by Dawkins in dealing with religious believers.

“What Dawkins does too often is to concentrate his attack on fundamentalists. But there are many believers who are just not fundamentalists,” Higgs said in an interview with the Spanish newspaper El Mundo. “Fundamentalism is another problem. I mean, Dawkins in a way is almost a fundamentalist himself, of another kind.”

He agreed with some of Dawkins’ thoughts on the unfortunate consequences that have resulted from religious belief, but he was unhappy with the evolutionary biologist’s approach to dealing with believers and said he agreed with those who found Dawkins’ approach “embarrassing”.

Dawkins, author of the best-selling book The God Delusion, has been accused many times in the past of adopting fundamentalist positions..

In a 2007 post on his website titled “How dare you call me a fundamentalist“, Dawkins wrote: “No, please, do not mistake passion, which can change its mind, for fundamentalism, which never will. Passion for passion, an evangelical Christian and I may be evenly matched. But we are not equally fundamentalist. The true scientist, however passionately he may ‘believe’, in evolution for example, knows exactly what would change his mind: evidence! The fundamentalist knows that nothing will.”

(Actually, paradigm shifts in sciences or other rooted common belief among “professionals” demand decades of struggles , producing “evidences” before change in mentality occur”. For example, the climate change, the depletion of potable water…)

The criticisms have not led the biologist to soften his stance on religion.

In a recent interview with al-Jazeera, he implied that being raised a Catholic was worse for a child than physical abuse by a priest.

Responding to a direct question from the interviewer Mehdi Hassan, Dawkins related the story of a woman in America who had written to him about abuse she suffered as a child at the hands of a priest, and the mental anguish of being told that one of her friends, a Protestant girl, would burn in hell.

“She told me that, of those two abuses, she got over the physical abuse, it was yucky but she got over it. But the mental abuse of being told about hell, she took years to get over,” said Dawkins.

Telling children such that they really believe that people who sin are going to go to hell and roast forever, that your skin grows again when it peels off, it seems to me intuitively entirely reasonable that is a worse form of child abuse, that will give more nightmares because they really believe it.”

Dawkins did not respond to a request to comment directly on Higgs’s “fundamentalist” charge.

In the El Mundo interview, Higgs argued that although he was not a believer, he thought science and religion were not incompatible. “The growth of our understanding of the world through science weakens some of the motivation which makes people believers. But that’s not the same thing as saying they’re incompatible. It’s just that I think some of the traditional reasons for belief, going back thousands of years, are rather undermined.

“But that doesn’t end the whole thing. Anybody who is a convinced, but not a dogmatic believer, can continue to hold his belief. It means I think you have to be rather more careful about the whole debate between science and religion than some people have been in the past.”

He said a lot of scientists in his field were religious believers. “I don’t happen to be one myself, but maybe that’s just more a matter of my family background than that there’s any fundamental difficulty about reconciling the two.”

The Higgs boson explained. Link to this video

In 1963 Higgs predicted the existence of a force-carrying particle, part of an invisible energy field that filled the vacuum throughout the observable universe.

Without the field, or something like it, we would not be here. The field clings to the smallest fundamental particles and gives them mass. The field, which switched on moments after the big bang, allowed particles to come together and form all the atoms and molecules around today.

In the interview, the physicist spoke about the announcement on 4 July that the Higgs boson had finally been found. He said he had received a call from a colleague at Cern a few days earlier who had told him he would regret it if he did not come along. At the announcement, Higgs began to cry.

“What was so overwhelming really was the response of the audience at Cern. It wasn’t like a scientific seminar, it was like the end of a football match when the home team has won, and that was what was overwhelming to me, to be a part of that … Bursting into tears was a reaction to the emotions around me and the feeling that, well, it’s arrived at last! That was hard to deal with.”

Many scientist believe that the discovery means that Higgs is odds on for a future Nobel prize. He was relieved, however, that the Nobel committee had skipped over the discovery for the physics award this year. “I was relieved, simply because since the beginning of July I’ve been so busy dealing with requests to do this and that, that I was glad not to have that on my schedule as well, so I have described it as a reprieve.”

• The original interview is copyright Pablo Jáuregui/El Mundo


Peter Higgs got it wrong: The field is Adonis and the particle is Foson…

Etienne Klein, a 54 years old particle physicist, working at the Commissariat of atomic energy, is explaining what is the function and properties of this boson of Higgs…

The consensus among particle and nuclear physicists is that there was not a single shadow of a doubt in their “standard model”, a theory that was predicted in 1964 by Robert Brout, Francois Englert, and Peter Higgs

The theory says that the tiny subatomic particles ave no mass of their own: What is being measured is the resistance of friction of the particle as they navigate within the field of bosons, called Higgs Field.

Thus, it is this “void” of bosons that is attaching weight to the particles: the tinier the particle, the less resistance it experience, the less mass is attached to it… And I like this interpretation, with a twist:

1. Why the boson must exist  just after any kinds of Big Bang?  Why not postulate: There was boson first, then all kinds of Big Bangs, and darkness, and light, and water and…? Otherwise, we are back to square zero in the interpretation of the existence of the universe, with or without boson

2. I am a walking person, and I walk slowly, and yet I have mass. Should the boson have any significant interaction with my walking resistance? But that’s another story…

In the 80’s, the US launched a vast program to detect the boson and other particles. The project was to construct an 80 kilometer collider in circumference…the program was dropped because it turned out too expensive to just detecting lousy bosons…

The European decided to take the baton and invested about $5 bn on their hadron LHC, a collider of 27 kilometers in circumference on the borders of France and Switzerland.

Over 1,252 supermagnets of 15 meters in length each, and cooled by liquid helium, are to guide the two waves of protons injected in the collider and running “against traffic”. Cavities in these magnets are to boost the protons with the equivalent energy of a single flying mosquito so that their speed reach the speed of light…The protons travel in the collider and tour it 11,245 times per second.

I think that Higgs didn’t get it quite right: The field is Adonis and what will be detected as the tiniest particle is the Foson…Why? How?

By the end of 2012, the CERN (European organization for nuclear research) is going to maintain the collider and will need to invest many $bn in order to add 10,000 welding points on the supermagnets so that the protons will enjoy an energy boost of Two flying mosquitoes

With such an energy boost, the foson will be detected…Mind you that fos in Arabic means a fart…

Note: More on this God Boson




September 2020

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