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#53 (@Dr Brian Keating ) Into the Impossible


Brian Keating is an American physicist who is a distinguished professor of physics at the Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences in the Department of Physics at University of California, San Diego. He has written two bestselling books entitled “Losing the Nobel Prize” and “Into the Impossible: Think Like a Nobel Prize Winner”. This episode, we go scientific but not without a little bit of madness and magic as we talk about scientists, the field of science, religion, and whether aliens even exist.
00:01:51 Welcoming Brian00:02:46 Intimidation in Science and Looking up to Einstein00:04:35 Imposter Syndrome, Insecurity and the State of Entropy00:13:10 Obsession with Achievement00:19:07 Climate Change, Having Kids, and the Meaning of Science00:24:42 Believing in a Beginning of the Universe00:30:10 Measuring Ripples From a Billion Years Ago00:36:20 Skepticism Among Scientists00:42:33 Grander Meaning Behind Scientific Work00:45:45 Are Aliens Real?00:51:03 Debates Between Friends and People00:54:05 Where to Find Brian Keating
Did Einstein Have Impostor Syndrome?
Brian shares how prevalent intimidation and impostor syndrome is among scientists and how they all look up to genius Albert Einstein, but that he wasn’t always the genius we all know him for. He had impostor syndrome himself and even looked up to Isaac Newton as the greatest contributor to western civilization. Brian shares how the root cause of either having too much arrogance or too much humility is insecurity, which leads to people developing Type A personalities, having toxic femininity or toxic masculinity traits, and other negative traits that stem from being insecure.
Religion in Science
Professionals in the field of science and academics are known to be skeptical about religion and while Brian thinks that it’s not altogether unearned, but this mindset only devoids life of any meaning if people purely think about the physical. As both a practicing Jew and cosmetologist, Brian aims to not prove God’s existence but to give people permission to consider the possibility that God might exist.
Are Aliens Real?
Scientists can’t rule out or prove whether aliens exist, but they can speculate using methods of logical and rational inference. Though what bothers Brian more are people saying that scientists and the government are covering it up. When it comes to science and extraterrestrial life, if a scientist can’t convince a person that they could be wrong, there’s nothing they could say that could falsify their preconceived notions, which is why it’s important for academics, and even regular people, to have some humility and learn from their critics to make room for their theories or results to become stronger.