Domenico Rosa posted Mar 20, 2014 5:51 AM (http://mathforum.org/kb/message.jspa?messageID=9415602) - GSC's remarks follow: > > On 16 Mar 2014, GS Chandy wrote: > > > Under the title "How Atheism Helped Create the > > Modern > > World [Excerpt]", Scientic American has published a > > thought-provoking excerpt from a book "Imagine > > There's No Heaven: How Atheism Helped Create the > > Modern World", by Mitchell Stephens. Very much > worth > > the reading, in my opinion. > > You may be interested in the Epicurean philosopher > Lucretius, as updated in > > http://www.amazon.com/Swerve-How-World-Became-Modern/d > p/0393343405/ > > BOOK DESCRIPTION: One of the world's most celebrated > scholars, Stephen Greenblatt has crafted both an > innovative work of history and a thrilling story of > discovery, in which one manuscript, plucked from a > thousand years of neglect, changed the course of > human thought and made possible the world as we know > it. > > Nearly six hundred years ago, a short, genial, > cannily alert man in his late thirties took a very > old manuscript off a library shelf, saw with > excitement what he had discovered, and ordered that > it be copied. That book was the last surviving > manuscript of an ancient Roman philosophical epic, On > the Nature of Things, by Lucretius?a beautiful poem > of the most dangerous ideas: that the universe > functioned without the aid of gods, that religious > fear was damaging to human life, and that matter was > made up of very small particles in eternal motion, > colliding and swerving in new directions. > > The copying and translation of this ancient book-the > greatest discovery of the greatest book-hunter of his > age-fueled the Renaissance, inspiring artists such as > Botticelli and thinkers such as Giordano Bruno; > shaped the thought of Galileo and Freud, Darwin and > Einstein; and had a revolutionary influence on > writers such as Montaigne and Shakespeare and even > Thomas Jefferson. > Thank you. I had of course known a little about Lucretius - obviously (when I read the description of Greenblatt's book) far too little than I should be knowing, view my interests and aims. I plan to get hold of the book soonest possible.