A Conversation on Cosmology

A Conversation on Cosmology

As the James Webb Telescope represents another great leap for imaging space, the great distance it can reach might inspire us to think about the peculiar relationships between space and time that we can see when we zoom far, far out in the galaxy. If we can see how far light has traveled, might we be able to go back to where it all began? What does that mean for our existence on the tiny blue marble we call Earth?

Dr. Stephen Rosen and Rabbi Dan Geffen discussed these topics from their complementary perspectives of astrophysics and Judaism, respectively. Astrophysics has advanced in very clearly visible ways, but even small differences in language among different translators and interpreters has changed the Jewish perspective on creation and cosmology over millennia.

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(This post is part of Sinai and Synapses’ project Scientists in Synagogues, a grass-roots program to offer Jews opportunities to explore the most interesting and pressing questions surrounding Judaism and science. Temple Adas Israel in Sag Harbor, NY has developed a program under its auspices called Science and Religion in Sag Harbor. Rabbi Dan Geffen is Rabbi of the congregation and Dr. Stephen Rosen is a physicist, an artist, an educator and author who has worked at Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Institut d’Astrophysique).


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