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Gerald E. Marsh http://www.gemarsh.com Thu, 07 May 2015 19:52:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.3 SENSE, THOUGHT, AND CONSCIOUSNESS http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/538 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/538#comments Tue, 09 Dec 2014 16:55:12 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=538 The late 19th and 20th centuries brought a revolution in the scientific understanding of the universe around us, one whose effects are still being felt around the world as it forces people to change their conception of the universe and the place of human beings within it.  Perhaps the greatest remaining mystery is the nature of consciousness itself, which has been a subject of human inquiry for at least the last several millennia. In this essay, I discuss the nature of thought and consciousness and argue that that consciousness and thought are natural biological phenomena.

(Updated version)


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THE PRESIDENT JUST DOESN’T GET IT http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/532 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/532#comments Mon, 17 Nov 2014 15:59:34 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=532 USA TODAY MAGAZINE-November 2014

Defeat of the Islamic State cannot be achieved by solely military means and, most especially, not by Western military actions such as the air strikes—even if given the cover of a coalition containing Arab nations; nor can military operations decrease the spread of beliefs upon which radical Islam is based.


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SPACE-TIME-MATTER http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/417 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/417#comments Thu, 14 Aug 2014 18:00:20 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=417 This essay examines our fundamental conceptions of time, spacetime, the asymmetry of time, and the motion of a quantum mechanical particle. The concept of time has multiple meanings and these are often confused in the literature and must be distinguished if any light is to be thrown on this age-old issue. The asymmetry of time also has different meanings that depend on context—although the fundamental time asymmetry is associated with the expansion of the universe. These and related issues are discussed in both classical and quantum mechanical contexts.

(This version has been expanded and reorganized)


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THE HUMAN CONDITION AND THE 21st CENTURY http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/502 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/502#comments Tue, 12 Aug 2014 20:42:33 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=502 The phrase “the human condition” has come to mean many things to different people, but here it simply refers to what history has shown to be the inescapable features of being human.  In this essay we take a look at current trends, what they foretell for the remainder of this century, and how the characteristics that make us human might affect the evolution of those trends.


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SCIENCE AND RELIGION http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/485 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/485#comments Wed, 30 Apr 2014 22:50:17 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=485 An interview by Prof. Adrian N. Guiu (Wright College, Chicago, IL) on Science & Religion.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

Part 4:

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RIGID ROTATION AND THE KERR METRIC http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/477 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/477#comments Mon, 21 Apr 2014 16:44:47 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=477 The Einstein field equations have no known and acceptable interior solution that can be matched to an exterior Kerr field. In particular, there are no interior solutions that could represent objects like the Earth or other rigidly rotating astronomical bodies. It is shown here that there exist closed surfaces upon which the frame-dragging angular velocity and the red-shift factor for the Kerr metric are constant. These surfaces could serve as a boundary between rigidly rotating sources for the Kerr metric and the Kerr external field.


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A NUCLEAR BOMB WORTH MORE THAN ITS WEIGHT IN GOLD http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/461 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/461#comments Fri, 07 Feb 2014 02:22:40 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=461 In the December 2013 issue of Physics Today David Kramer tells us—in an article titled A nuclear bomb worth more than its weight in gold?—that “some critics of the B-61 life extension program question whether the program is necessary.” And, “Representative John Garamendi (D-CA) questioned why the B-83, a newer bomb that officials acknowledge won’t need a life extension for at least 10 years, shouldn’t replace the B-61”. Strangely enough the article omits the principal reason why the administration may think the B-61 is worth more than its weight in gold.

The article appears in Physics & Society 6 Feb 2014.  The link is:


The MS with better quality figures and equations is available here: P&S-EPW-nid


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HAS THE WHOLE WORLD LOST ITS HEAD? http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/453 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/453#comments Fri, 29 Nov 2013 20:10:51 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=453 We surely have the means to deal with the locally rational but globally nuts dilemma, the question is whether we collectively have the will to do so. This perhaps is the most important problem we face in the 21st century.

USA Today Magazine-Nov 2013

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DOES GOD PLAY DICE? CONCEPTUAL QUANTUM PHYSICS FOR THE PERPLEXED http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/444 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/444#comments Tue, 05 Nov 2013 21:14:39 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=444 The late 19th century and the beginning of the 20th brought with it a revolution in the scientific understanding of the universe around us, one whose effects are still being felt around the world as it forces people to change their ideas about the universe and the place of human beings within it. Even a conceptual understanding of the early origin of the universe requires an introductory knowledge of quantum mechanics. Unfortunately, the attempt to reconcile quantum mechanics with concepts brought over from classical mechanics has led to  much confusion especially among non-physicists and students of physics.  This essay is an attempt to address some of this wide spread confusion.


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Spring Has Sprung, but the Middle East Remains a Muddle http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/399 http://www.gemarsh.com/archives/399#comments Fri, 11 Jan 2013 02:03:55 +0000 http://www.gemarsh.com/?p=399 USA Today Magazine (January 2013)


The Arab Spring was a dramatic result of a policy failure on the part of Arab countries. For many decades they have used the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to divert the attention of their own citizens, the so-called “Arab street”, from their own economic and domestic failure to deliver a decent life to their people.


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