Ralph Higgins

Ralph Higgins
color pencil sketch by Gayle Higgins

Quotes I Like

“Everyone is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

-Albert Einstein


Saturday, July 30, 2011

Something to think about

One of the major obstacles to the validity of Darwin’s theory of evolution is the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Commonly known as the Law of Entropy, this scientific law states that in all energy transformations, there is a tendency for some of the energy to be transformed into non-reversible heat energy. In other words, everything runs down or wears out. It decays. It dissipates. Reminds me of my 72 year-old body.

Entropy is used as a measure of the amount of energy depleted from a system. We can manipulate energy, but we can’t create it. This is confirmed by the First Law of Thermodynamics, also called the Law of Conservation of Energy. This one says that energy can be transformed in various ways, but it can neither be created nor destroyed. This means that the amount of energy cannot increase and that’s the key. Everything within our system, the entire universe, is running down, decaying, decreasing in complexity. This includes our own sun. It also includes my car and my brain.

The implication is that the universe is moving toward an irreversible state of maximum disorder and minimum energy. The second law says that this will not happen in reverse, mo matter how hard you work out at the gym. Energy and order won’t increase and since a maximum state of entropy has not been reached, the universe has not been here forever. It was “wound up” at some point and is now running down. In short, the universe had to have a beginning.

In the late 1920s Edwin Hubble discovered that the light from distant galaxies shifted toward the red end of the spectrum, indicating an expanding universe. Stars are moving away from us. This is similar to tossing a pebbled in a pond. The circle moves away from the center. Some scientists say that the original configuration of the universe may have been a state of infinite density where all mass, energy, space and time were contained in a single mathematical point with no dimensions. This is a hypothetical and complex concept that simply points to a beginning. I couldn't begin to understand it.

The evidence and natural laws fly in the face of the idea espoused by Bertrand Russell that the universe is “just there and that’s all there is to it.” The only rational alternative is that something has to be “eternal.” If the universe isn’t eternal then something external to the universe, such as a Creator, must be eternal. God is outside of time and space. God is eternal. God is the artist painting our universe on a canvas of time and space and it is within this portrait that we are created and temporarily confined.

I like to think about this stuff, despite the fact that I’m thinking about it while in a process of accelerated entropy, moving toward an irreversible state of maximum disorder and minimum energy. I think I'm already there! It’s time for a nap.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Enjoy what you can, while you can.

We have all experienced the frustration of being without electricity when the power goes off in the evening. You’ve got to keep the refrigerator closed to hold the temperature as long as possible.  You have to find a flashlight to help you find candles and matches. The heater doesn’t function and if you are on a well, you have to conserve water to drink and flush toilets. No computer. No TV. If your phones use electricity, no phone. It’s good to have a land line as a back-up. The garage door won’t work.

The point is that we take many things for granted and only become aware of them when they are gone.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

A Vacation Alternative

I just got a reminder from Ed Wall to get off my butt and blog about something. Trouble is - my thinking has been limited to recovering from a full knee replacement, which I had done last week. Due to swelling, I’m not supposed to sit for long, so messing with the computer has been put on hold. But maybe I’ll give you a quick overview of the process.