„For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.“

—  Carl Sagan, buch The Demon-Haunted World, The Demon-Haunted World : Science as a Candle in the Dark (1995), Ch. 1 : The Most Precious Thing, p. 12
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Carl Sagan9
US-amerikanischer Naturwissenschaftler und Fernsehmoderator 1934 - 1996

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„I shall try to utilize this temper of mind today by clearing away, so far as I can, certain presuppositions, on one side or on the other, which seem to me to depend upon a too hasty assumption that we know more about the universe than as yet we really can know.“

—  William Crookes British chemist and physicist 1832 - 1919
Address to the Society for Psychical Research (1897), Context: I am not disposed to bewail the limitations imposed by human ignorance. On the contrary, I feel ignorance is a healthful stimulant; and my enforced conviction that neither I nor anyone can possibly lay down beforehand what does not exist in the universe, or even what is not going on all round us everyday of our lives, leaves me with a cheerful hope that something very new and very arresting may turn up anywhere at any minute. … I shall try to utilize this temper of mind today by clearing away, so far as I can, certain presuppositions, on one side or on the other, which seem to me to depend upon a too hasty assumption that we know more about the universe than as yet we really can know.

Richard Dawkins Foto

„However difficult those simple beginnings may be to accept, they are a whole lot easier to accept than complicated beginnings. Complicated things come into the universe late, as a consequence of slow, gradual, incremental steps. God, if he exists, would have to be a very, very, very complicated thing indeed. So to postulate a God as the beginning of the universe, as the answer to the riddle of the first cause, is to shoot yourself in the conceptual foot because you are immediately postulating something far far more complicated than that which you are trying to explain.“

—  Richard Dawkins, buch Der Gotteswahn
The God Delusion (2006), Context: If the alternative that's being offered to what physicists now talk about - a big bang, a spontaneous singularity which gave rise to the origin of the universe - if the alternative to that is a divine intelligence, a creator, which would have to have been complicated, statistically improbable, the very kind of thing which scientific theories such as Darwin's exists to explain, then immediately we see that however difficult and apparently inadequate the theory of the physicists is, the theory of the theologians - that the first course was a complicated intelligence - is even more difficult to accept. They're both difficult but the theory of the cosmic intelligence is even worse. What Darwinism does is to raise our consciousness to the power of science to explain the existence of complex things and intelligences, and creative intelligences are above all complex things, they're statistically improbable. Darwinism raises our consciousness to the power of science to explain how such entities - and the human brain is one - can come into existence from simple beginnings. However difficult those simple beginnings may be to accept, they are a whole lot easier to accept than complicated beginnings. Complicated things come into the universe late, as a consequence of slow, gradual, incremental steps. God, if he exists, would have to be a very, very, very complicated thing indeed. So to postulate a God as the beginning of the universe, as the answer to the riddle of the first cause, is to shoot yourself in the conceptual foot because you are immediately postulating something far far more complicated than that which you are trying to explain. Now, physicists cope with this problem in various ways, which may seem somewhat unconvincing. For example, they suggest that our universe is but one bubble in foam of universes, the multiverse, and each bubble in the foam has a different set of laws and constants. And by the anthropic principle we have to be - since we're here talking about it - in the kind of bubble, with the kind of laws and constants, which are capable of giving rise to the evolutionary process and therefore to creatures like us. That is one current physicists' explanation for how we exist in the kind of universe that we do. It doesn't sound so shatteringly convincing as say Darwin's own theory, which is self-evidently very convincing. Nevertheless, however unconvincing that may sound, it is many, many, many orders of magnitude more convincing than any theory that says complex intelligence was there right from the outset. If you have problems seeing how matter could just come into existence - try thinking about how complex intelligent matter, or complex intelligent entities of any kind, could suddenly spring into existence, it's many many orders of magnitude harder to understand. Lynchburg, Virginia, 23/10/2006 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qR_z85O0P2M&t=42m41s

„In universities and intellectual circles, academics can guarantee themselves popularity — or, which is just as satisfying, unpopularity — by being opinionated rather than by being learned.“

—  A. N. Wilson English writer 1950
A. N. Wilson, as quoted in The Guardian (30 September 1989); also in The Columbia Dictionary of Quotations (1993) by Robert Andrews, p. 6.

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„The basic laws of the universe are simple, but because our senses are limited, we can't grasp them. There is a pattern in creation.“

—  Albert Einstein German-born physicist and founder of the theory of relativity 1879 - 1955
Attributed in posthumous publications, p. 10

Clifford D. Simak Foto

„Once again the universe was spread far out before him and it was a different and in some ways a better universe, a more diagrammatic universe, and in time, he knew, if there were such a thing as time, he'd gain some completer understanding and acceptance of it.
He probed and sensed and learned and there was no such thing as time, but a great foreverness.“

—  Clifford D. Simak American writer, journalist 1904 - 1988
Short Fiction, Skirmish (1977), Context: Once again the universe was spread far out before him and it was a different and in some ways a better universe, a more diagrammatic universe, and in time, he knew, if there were such a thing as time, he'd gain some completer understanding and acceptance of it. He probed and sensed and learned and there was no such thing as time, but a great foreverness. He thought with pity of those others locked inside the ship, safe behind its insulating walls, never knowing all the glories of the innards of a star or the vast panoramic sweep of vision and of knowing far above the flat galactic plane. Yet he really did not know what he saw or probed; he merely sensed and felt it and became a part of it, and it became a part of him — he seemed unable to reduce it to a formal outline of fact or of dimension or of content. It still remained a knowledge and a power so overwhelming that it was nebulous. There was no fear and no wonder, for in this place, it seemed, there was neither fear nor wonder. And he finally knew that it was a place apart, a world in which the normal space-time knowledge and emotion had no place at all and a normal space-time being could have no tools or measuring stick by which he might reduce it to a frame of reference. There was no time, no space, no fear, no wonder — and no actual knowledge, either. “All the Traps of Earth” (p. 165); originally published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, March 1960

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