Physicist Steven Weinberg, a central contributor to our current understanding of the elementary particles and forces that compose our universe, passed away last year. He was a brilliant researcher and devoted scientific communicator, attempting to convey the relevance of contemporary findings to people’s lives.

Unfortunately, Weinberg is most known for a single quote: “The more the universe seems comprehensible, the more it also seems pointless.”

From the example of Weinberg’s life, it’s quite clear that he felt our existence had meaning. The ways we treat each other matter. Weinberg strove to live ethically, even in the face of intense criticism.

Still, it’s perilously easy for someone with a materialistic view of the universe to sink into despair. I could go on about this, but surely I don’t need to: as we slump through our third year of global pandemic, probably most of us are far too familiar with despair.


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