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Book review: Time Reborn, by Lee Smolin

Smolin is a physicist who is probably best known for his theory of the Darwinian evolution of universes. We are invited to picture black holes continually giving birth to new universes, in many of which new black holes will form to spawn further universes in their turn. This process is supposed to be influenced by Darwinian selection to produce universes with more black holes and ever-increasing complexity.

That idea gave a central role to time, and in the present book Smolin takes this further. The idea that time is unreal, an illusion, is ancient and widespread. Truth, justice, scientific laws, and the divine realm are often said to be outside time. This was Plato's view and it was also held by Einstein. Smolin, in contrast, thinks that time is utterly real. In fact, it is the most real aspect of our perception of the world. [More]


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