It’s not a “god particle”. It’s simply a building block of all matter. The Higgs Boson. Why does the media feel the need to dumb their coverage down for the masses by equating everything to a religious metaphor?
You know that all the ignoramuses out there are going to read this and think “See? The purpose of science is to prove the existence of god. That’s what science is all about.”
It’s no wonder this country falls so short on math and science scores, why school boards insist on de-emphasizing evolution, while trying to sneak prayer in the back door, and why this country will one day be a second class country. Because we have to see everything through religion colored glasses, rather than pulling the fuckin’ shades off and looking reality straight in the face. And the media doesn’t help.
It’s why a commenter over at the Friendly Atheist insisted that “god is a beautiful metaphor”. Well, fuck me. A metaphor for what? Reality? A metaphor is a rhetorical device used to help understand something that is otherwise difficult to understand. Sure, reality is sometimes hard to fathom, but why stick to metaphors when it’s possible to understand it, full frontal? If god is a metaphor, for something that can’t be readily understood, then in effect God doesn’t exist, because neither do rhetorical devices that stand in for the real thing.
Some people just can’t handle the cold brute facts of life. They have to filter everything through a metaphorical, religion tinged cheesecloth, so that it doesn’t seem as harsh as they fear it might be. So it’s not a Higgs Boson, the “key missing ingredient in physicists’ understanding of what makes the universe tick”, it’s the “god particle”.
Give me a break.
By the way, this is potentially a very exciting discovery, if it actually pans out. All signs point to premature excitement at the moment, but one of the primary reasons for the existence of CERN is the elusive Higgs Boson, which has been predicted mathematically many years ago, but never confirmed experimentally. I wish I could say I understood what it was they were looking for, but alas, I know enough to appreciate my ignorance. However, I do know that it has nothing to do with god.
Unless god is just a metaphor.
Unfortunately, it was actually a scientist who started this reference to the Higgs Boson as “god particle”, due to a book written by physicist Leon Lederman in 1993 called, “The God Particle: If the Universe Is the Answer, What Is the Question?”.
Why is it always “dumbed down”? Uh… because as a society, we’re pretty dumb.
It’s all about ratings, so what’s going to get people to tune in, a story about a universal building block or one on a “god particle”?
I also think that a scientist can have no problem with saying “god particle” whether they believe in a god or not because they’re sufficiently intelligent and educated enough to deal with metaphors and have a sense of humor but most people, at least in our country, are not so well equipped. They’ll take such comments literally. Look at all the nonsense arguments clogging the intertubes about what it meant about Einstein that he used the word “god” on occasion. Jefferson used “Creator” in the Declaration, therefore he was an Evangelical and the US was founded on the Christian Bible.
You’re right. Fundogelicals find it nearly impossible to separate metaphors from facts.
Maybe they should call it the Jimmy Hoffa Particle. We know he’s buried out there somewhere.
“It wasn’t even Lederman’s choice. “He wanted to refer to it as that ‘goddamn particle’ and his editor wouldn’t let him,” says Higgs.”