Tag Archives | Isaac Newton

Teenager Beats Riddle That Baffled Issac Newton

Newton By William BlakeNot bad. How about showing Americans kids how dumb they are? Via the Herald Sun:

Shouryya Ray is the first person to work out how to calculate exactly the path of a projectile under gravity and subject to air resistance, The (London) Sunday Times reported.

The Indian-born teen said he solved the problem that had stumped mathematicians for centuries while working on a school project.

Shouryya won a research award for his efforts and has been labeled a genius by the German media, but he put it down to “curiosity and schoolboy naivety.”

“When it was explained to us that the problems had no solutions, I thought to myself, ‘well, there’s no harm in trying,’” he said. Shouryya’s family moved to Germany when he was 12 after his engineer father got a job at a technical college. He said his father instilled in him a “hunger for mathematics” and taught him calculus at the age of six.

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The Occult Obsessions Of Sir Isaac Newton

newton_manuscript416The father of physics was deeply involved with esoteric and Kabbala studies, and was convinced that Jewish scripture and the geometry of temples contained crucial worldly secrets, the Daily Mail reveals:

He laid the foundations of classical physics and is considered to be one of the greatest scientists of all time. But Sir Isaac Newton was also deeply interested in the occult and applied a scientific approach to the study of scripture and Jewish mysticism.

Now Israel’s national library, which contains a vast trove of Newton’s esoteric writings, has digitised his occult collection and posted it online. Among the yellowed texts is Newton’s famous prediction of the apocalypse in 2060.

Newton learned Hebrew and delved into the study of esoteric Jewish philosophy, the mysticism of Kabbala and the Talmud. He based his calculation on the end of days on information gleaned from the Book of Daniel, which projected the apocalypse 1,260 years later.

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Isaac Newton, Alchemist

William Blake's 'Newton' (1795)

William Blake's 'Newton' (1795)

Natalie Angier has written an excellent introduction to the work of Sir Isaac Newton in the tradition of alchemy, which is generally downplayed in the history books but was a major part of Newton’s research, for the New York Times:

…Sir Isaac had a whole other full-time career, a parallel intellectual passion that he kept largely hidden from view but that rivaled and sometimes surpassed in intensity his devotion to celestial mechanics. Newton was a serious alchemist, who spent night upon dawn for three decades of his life slaving over a stygian furnace in search of the power to transmute one chemical element into another.

Newton’s interest in alchemy has long been known in broad outline, but the scope and details of that moonlighting enterprise are only now becoming clear, as science historians gradually analyze and publish Newton’s extensive writings on alchemy — a million-plus words from the Newtonian archives that had previously been largely ignored.

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