In the first half, theoretical physicist and popularizer of science, Dr. Michio Kaku, discussed the latest science stories in the news, including monster solar flares, and the search for dark matter. Lately, the sun has been throwing "temper tantrums," with some very large solar flares, he said, and as we head into the maximum of the sunspot cycle, "the fear is that one of these solar flares could hit the Earth," like the event that occurred in 1859, which fried telegraph wires. He also noted that the asteroid Apophis could be a threat to our planet when it flies by in 2029, and again in 2036, though the odds have diminished somewhat that it will be a direct hit.
Regarding parallel universes, string theory might eventually prove their existence in other dimensions, he said. As to the concept of the "multiverse," our universe could be considered like a bubble, and there could be other bubbles existing in a kind of bubble bath, he explained, and sometimes these bubbles bump into each other resulting in something like the Big Bang. What existed before the Big Bang? "We should find evidence of an 'umbilical cord'...perhaps connecting our universe to a parallel universe," he posited. NASA is considering launching LISA, a laser space antenna that could reveal data of our cosmological origins, he reported.
Beyond the Higgs, he spoke about the next set of particles that could be discovered by the Large Hadron Collider. Called sparticles or super particles, they are "the next octave on the string," invisibly vibrating on a higher level, he said. These sparticles may be what dark matter is, he added. Dr. Kaku also talked about reports of rogue planets, as well as wandering black holes, which could pose grave dangers to a solar system.
In the latter half, scholar of Ancient Near-Eastern Studies, Julia Assante, who gave up the rigors of academia to pursue her passion for after-life science, discussed her exploration of the connection between the living and the departed. An intuitive and medium, she was able to communicate with the dead from an early age, and suggested that anyone can learn to do this by becoming more receptive. The fear of death runs the modern world, and is exploited by various institutions and industries, conveying the message that "the body is a time bomb, and death is a failure," she commented. Yet, she ascertains that by getting rid of the fear of death, people actually live more robust, happier lives.
The afterlife reality is created by consciousness, so you bring things that are familiar to you into it, she said. The Other Side is not a specific place, as such, and while you could "reconstruct a house from your childhood...that gives you a certain amount of comfort or furthers you along in your self discovery," that doesn't mean you'll be staying there on any kind of permanent basis, she noted. For more, check out this video clip in which Assante expounds on the afterlife.
Bumper music from Tuesday November 20, 2012