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Martin Gardner has died
Posted: 12 March 2011 02:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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BFH - 12 March 2011 11:32 AM

May I suggest we change the title of this thread to “Martin Gardner Appreciation Thread”? Though I’m happy to just create a new thread.

My point, really, is… I totally appreciate Martin Gardner!!!

As do I!

Feel free to start a new thread if you like.

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Posted: 04 April 2011 05:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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A reply to an old thread, but I’m not an obituary-reader.

I’m very sad to hear Martin Gardner is gone - although he was a very old man, and lived a very full professional life.

Many Christians - at least, this one - have read his stuff with pleasure also; for whatever reasons, his articles almost never were attacks on religion and religious belief in general. The Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science is a good case in point. And he was in some ways an equal-opportunity sceptic: two examples from that book are his expose of the chimps who were claimed to learn sign-language (sadly, the original researchers pooh-poohed his criticism, and more recent research has made the same mistakes), and his panning of ‘Catastrophe Theory’, a useless expansion of ‘scientific’ of mathematical modelling for human crises. (All the ‘tipping-point’ books out now have CT as their ancestor). Both of those are about over-eager scientists not over-eager religionists.

Gardner’s column in Scientific American was ‘Mathematical Recreations’ up until the 90’s; collections can be found here:  http://www.amazon.com/s?ie=UTF8&keywords=Mathematical recreations&rh=n:283155,k:Mathematical recreations,p_lbr_one_browse-bin:Martin Gardner&page=1

Gardner was a class act, too; his replacement in Sci. Am. is not up to his level, but maybe no-one could be. And he had a subtle humor as a sceptic that has (IMO) gone sour in more recent authors. Utterly clear writing, too. Anyone, secular or not, would do well to copy his style.

Anyone here happen to know if his old columns are online at Scientific American’s website? (I’m not finding it, but i’m not a good ‘surfer’) or maybe a fan has downloaded them?

inthegobi

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Posted: 04 April 2011 06:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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inthegobi - 04 April 2011 05:30 AM

I’m very sad to hear Martin Gardner is gone

Why? Aren’t you, Christians, supposed to have a blast in the heaven?

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Posted: 04 April 2011 06:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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George - 04 April 2011 06:21 AM
inthegobi - 04 April 2011 05:30 AM

I’m very sad to hear Martin Gardner is gone

Why? Aren’t you, Christians, supposed to have a blast in [H]eaven?

And therefore death is not a horror to them? And therefore those of us left here shouldn’t miss those who are gone? And therefor nor should we miss the contributions of the talented? Especially when a giant like Gardner has been replaced with dwarfs like Shermer? (Relatively speaking; Shermer’s a decent thinker, but he’s *no* Gardner.)

Brilliant analysis, George; unassailable, one might even say.

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Posted: 04 April 2011 07:23 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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Why should death be a horror to either you or Gardner? Gardner is presumably doing just fine, being with God and all that stuff, and you only have to endure Shermer’s dwarfness for a few more decades before you replace it with an eternity of Gardner’s greatness.

[ Edited: 04 April 2011 07:26 AM by George ]
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Posted: 04 April 2011 08:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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No reason to be snarky, George. At any rate although Gardner was a Deist I don’t believe he was a Christian, and I don’t believe he had much ‘faith’ in an afterlife.

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Posted: 04 April 2011 08:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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It has nothing to do with Gardner. I only wanted to know how inthegobi, as a Christian and a philosopher, would explain and justify his grief.

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Posted: 04 April 2011 06:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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George - 04 April 2011 08:14 AM

It has nothing to do with Gardner. I only wanted to know how inthegobi, as a Christian and a philosopher, would explain and justify his grief.

He’s human.  Thus, I would say that is how he justifies his grief.

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“Sometimes in order to see the light, you have to risk the dark.” ~ Iris Hineman (Lois Smith) The Minority Report

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Posted: 04 April 2011 07:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
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Sure he’s human. But he has an immortal soul and that complicates things. And being human with an immortal soul AND a philosopher must be even more difficult as one won’t probably get high on faith that easily. I know a Catholic priest through one of my friends and we sometimes get together, have a few bottles of wine and talk about stuff—the man (highly intelligent) is a mess.

EDIT: What I just said doesn’t mean that inthegobi must be as confused as the priest I know. That’s why I was being curious.

[ Edited: 04 April 2011 07:17 PM by George ]
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