A Cheeseburger Made from Light?

In the Smithsonian today it was reported that scientists at the Imperial College in London have figured out how to create matter directly from pure light. In about a year, if everything goes as planned, they’ll be able to test their theory. It’s done by shooting high-intensity lasers into a hohlraum (German for “empty room”), creating sub-atomic particles from photons.

In a sense, it’s like creating “a supernova in a bottle.”

This process is simpler than previous types of experiments, like the one conducted in 1997 at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Centre, which also created matter from light, but in a different, more complex way. This new theory is more like the natural process of light conversion seen in the nucleus of a star.

The idea for light-matter conversion stemmed from the work of two physicists in 1934, who scripted the idea but conceded that it would be far too complicated to produce. So they gave up and went on to something much more productive, creating a nuclear bomb.

But it took only 80 years for the technology to catch up to Gregory Breit and John Wheeler’s theory. That’s fast.

In other news, it is reported that within the next few years, the armor worn by an American soldier will resemble something of a Robocop. He’ll be covered in bulletproof, blastproof gear, with sensors in his visor that will allow him to detect danger behind him. He’ll even have sensors implanted into his skin that will connect to solar panels worn on the exterior, which will generate power for his battlefield technology. He’ll probably be able to run really, really, ridiculously fast.

To be honest, all these changes are slightly disconcerting. It’s difficult to ponder an age that isn’t moving at a pace faster than ours, a pace which seems to be increasing exponentially. So where does it all lead?

I don’t know. I don’t know if I want to know. But I know where it can lead. It leads me to my knees. It drives me to prayer, to ask God, “Jesus, please help me!”

I’ll never be stronger than a soldier in bulletproof armor. I’ll never be savvy enough to get the best out of light. The Age we live in is faster than any Age before. But there’s nothing faster than love. And mercy. And grace. And forgiveness. And courage. And faith. And all the fruits of the Spirit. These intangible qualities are more fortified than manmade armor, and they are more brilliant and more powerful than light. They create not matter, but food for the soul. And because that is so, then I will embrace our Age. Because I’m hungry. No, I’m starving.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires.” ~ Galatians 5:22-24

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