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I’ve never heard a snowflake fall. It must make a sound, even if, as an Asian parable says, a snowflake weighs “Nothing, or less than nothing.” And yet there must be a point of contact, and with it, a sound, however slight.
Even if human ears are not sensitive enough to hear it.
I can’t hear a worm, burrowing through moist soil towards a dew-dappled lawn. But a robin can.
A dog can hear a whistle way above my frequency range; at the other end of the frequency scale, elephants use a sub-audible rumble to communicate with other elephants out of sight over the horizon.
In her book, A God That Could Be Real,author Nancy Ellen Abrams explores some implications of our human limitations. We can only comprehend things that fall within a certain size range, she asserts, relative to our own size.
Categories: Soft Edges
Tags: God, hearing, sight, Nancy Ellen Abrams, perceptions, A God That Could Be Real
At year end, many columnists share their reading recommendations. My recommendations are quite short. Just two books.
I’ve read more than that, of course. But these two left a lasting impression on me: A God That Could Be Real, by Nancy Ellen Abrams, and The Righteous Mind, by Jonathan Haidt.
I like the Abrams book because it takes a totally different approach to discussing the reality — or not — of a divine being. I don’t recall her ever quoting the Bible. Or the doctrines of any church. Or the theories of any theologian.
Instead of starting with whatever people already know and assume about the nature of God, she starts with science. With what we already know, and we can know, about the universe we live in.
Categories: Sharp Edges
Tags: books, Jonathan Haidt, Nancy Ellen Abrams