Philosophical Questions

“Philosophical questions are not by their nature insoluble. They are, indeed, radically different from scientific questions, because they concern the implications and other interrelations of ideas, not the order of physical events; their answers are interpretations instead of factual reports, and their function is to increase not our knowledge of nature, but our understanding of what we know.”

~ Susanne Katherina Langer

Stephen Hawking

A well-known scientist (some say it was Bertrand Russell) once gave a public lecture on astronomy. He described how the earth orbits around the sun and how the sun, in turn, orbits around the center of a vast collection of stars called our galaxy. At the end of the lecture a little old lady at the back of the room got up and said ‘What you have told us is rubbish. The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant tortoise.’ The scientist gave a superior smile before replying, ‘What is the turtle standing on’ ‘You’re very clever, young man, very clever,’ said the little old lady. ‘But it’s turtles all the way down.’

– Stephen William Hawking