English cosmologist and theoretical physicist, Research Professor of Mathematical Sciences at Cambridge. Barrow has lectured at 10 Downing Street, Windsor Castle, the Vatican, and to the general public. In 2002, his play Infinities premiered in Milan, played in Valencia, and won the Premi Ubu 2002 Italian Theatre Prize.
He was awarded the 2006 Templeton Prize for "Progress Toward Research or Discoveries about Spiritual Realities" for his "writings about the relationship between life and the universe, and the nature of human understanding [which] have created new perspectives on questions of ultimate concern to science and religion". He is a member of a United Reformed Church, which he describes as teaching "a traditional deistic picture of the universe"
Book of Nothing"
"The Universe appears to be a system of very low density wherever we
look. This is no accident. The expansion of the Universe weds its size
and age to the gravitational pull of the material that it contains. In
order that a universe expands for long enough to allow the building
blocks of life to form in the interiors of stars, by a sequence of
nuclear reactions, it must be billions of years old. This means that
it must be billions of light years in extent and possess a very small
average density of matter and a very low temperature. The low
temperature and energy of its material ensures that the sky is dark at
night. Turn off our local Sun and there is just too little light
around in the Universe to brighten the sky. The night is dark,
interspersed only by pinpricks of starlight. Universes that contain
life must be big and old, dark and cold. If our Universe was less of a
vacuum it could not be an abode for living complexity. ... Not until
the last half of the twentieth century would it be appreciated how the
vastness of the Universe is necessary for the existence of life on a
single planet within it."
(Page 110 and 114)
"The World Within the World"
Oxford: Oxford University Press,(1990).
"A universe simple enough to be understood is too simple to produce a mind capable of understanding it." pp. 342-343