A Universe From Nothing – book review

The author fails to explain his central thesis, which is how he perhaps succeeds. Once you read this book you might appreciate the quirky wit in the opening sentence, and see how inevitable it truly is.
If you can wrap your head around that preamble, go ahead and read this book.
Be warned, this is not a book for the lay reader; it demands an understanding of basic Physics quite beyond what we generally assume is a High School level of understanding. It’s a dense book, and try as he might Prof Krauss cannot make it simpler beyond a point.
The central thesis of the work, how matter came into existence, why it is this way, from the questionably “stringy” quarks and muons and gravitons to meta-clusters of galaxies; why the universe is as it is – that is a question humankind (thank Richard Dawkins) has barely begun to answer.
What we do know about the process however, is remarkable in the extreme. From Dark Matter to Dark Energy (which makes empty space not so empty) to a flat universe to a long distant future where any intelligent species could not figure out these secrets that we are working on, no matter how hard they tried (possibly), to variations on the multiverse theory, the topics Prof Krauss has attempted to explain have baffled our best minds for a century now and they are still as hard to grasp.
Some of it is pure theory, some just mathematical equations (I can hear math/physics geeks wince at that), but some is experimentally proven, some provable, and some empirically verifiable. We know how it should be and we can, at times, see brief glimpses that show us that it is as it should be.
I know I should write a review that clarifies a book so someone reading this can decide whether it’s worth his/her time to read it on their own. But this book defies such expostulations. What I will say, however, is that if you read it and spend time understanding it, you will come away with a completely changed outlook on what constitutes our universe and why Physics says with a great level of certainty that creation did not require a creator.
This is not a QED book, but it offers a brilliant glimpse into the world around us that we are only beginning to grasp at its most basic level. It’s a tour de force for someone who has the time and patience to read and re-read sundry paragraphs and gain an unimaginable insight into our very existence. And that for certain, is not nothing.


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