EST Conference - May 19th-21st

EST Conference - May 19th-21st

The international conference “Eternity between Space and Time: from Consciousness to the Cosmos” (EST) takes on a theme that is as important as it is impressive: eternity.
We are used to thinking about what is spatially and temporally limited, so it is very difficult to conceive of the absolute absence of perimeters, as the concept of eternity implies. The greatest thinkers in history have always grappled with this challenge, which EST has adhered to by opening up a debate between scholars from different disciplines, from physics to psychology, from philosophy to theology.

Encounters between different disciplines are always fruitful, as we know from the experience of the middle of last century in Palo Alto, California, when physicists, biologists, psychologists, sociologists, mathematicians and cyberneticians met to work together on a meta-theory that could combine the contents of different skills. This hybridisation gave rise to the General Systems Theory. These experiences lead to the so-called ‘scientific revolutions’.

Under the scientific direction of Ines Testoni, Fabio Scardigli and Andrea Toniolo, EST brings together Nobel Prize winners (Penrose and T’Hooft) and world-renowned researchers (including Veneziano, Faggin, Plebani, Appel and Cacciari) to discuss how to deal with the concept of eternity in an innovative way. This could be a first step of authentic and reciprocal interdisciplinary cross-fertilisation that sees in the University of Padua, as it has for eight hundred years, an inexhaustible source of innovation.

Moreover, on May 19th and 20th two Nobel Prize winners are giving lectures after the conference.

Thursday 19th: 18.30 Nobel lecture – Gerard ‘t Hooft, “A Confrontation with Infinity” 

Friday 20th: 18.00 Nobel lecture – Roger Penrose, “Physics of consciousness”



Thursday 19 May 2022 

Centro congressi Orto Botanico

8.30 Opening:

Welcome by the Authorities and introduction to the work: Daniela Mapelli, Sergio Giordani, Luca Zaia, Egidio Robusto, Andrea Toniolo, Santo Di Nuovo, Ines Testoni, Fabio Scardigli

Cosmic visions 

Chair: Piero Benvenuti– Discussant: Fabio Scardigli

9.30 Gerard 't Hooft: “How studying black hole theory may help us to quantize gravity”.

10.15 Roger Penrose: “Conformal Cyclic Cosmology”.

11.00-11.20 Break

Eternity in physics 

Chair: Damiano Sacco - Discussant: Gabriele Gionti

11.20 Gabriele Veneziano: “The Big-Bang's New Clothes and Eternity”

12.00 Piero Benvenuti: “Cosmology and Cosmologia: A much needed distinction” 

12.40 Discussion

13.00-14.00 Break 

Indeterminacy and conscience

Chair: Ines Testoni - Discussant: Federico Faggin

14.00 Piero Martin: “Physics: the power of doubt” 

14.40 Fabio Scardigli: “Uncertainty principle and Gravity”

15.20 Giuseppe Vitiello: “Brain, mind, the arrow of time and consciousness” 

16.00 Gabriele Gionti: “The beginning of the Universe and the Question of God” 

16.35 Paola Zizzi: “Quantum robots: Perhaps they are already present in Nature” 

Brief message of Massimo Cacciari and presentation of the English edition of Law and chance by Emanuele Severino (Bloomsbury), edited by Giulio Goggi, Damiano Sacco and Ines Testoni

17.00 Closure

Friday 20 May 2022 (Venerdì 20 Maggio 2022)

Centro congressi Orto Botanico

Physics and consciousness 

Chair: Egidio Robusto – Discussant: Fabio Scardigli 

9.00 Federico Faggin: “Freedom and Artificial Intelligence” 

9.40 Mauro D’Ariano: “Quantum Information and Consciousness” 

10.20 Mario Plebani: “Life in laboratory” 

10.50-11.10 Break 

Being within the limit and beyond 

Chair: Fabio Farinati - Discussant: Paolo Navalesi

11.10 Santo Di Nuovo: “Finitude and project: for which space? And for what time?”

11.40 Diego De Leo: “Finitude of older adults and loneliness” 

12.10  Raffaele Mauro: “The Space Frontier: economy, technology and human exploration”  

12.40 Discussion 

13.00-14.00 Break 

Eternity, infinity and death

Chair: Dora Capozza – Discussant: Luca Palmeri

14.00  Alberto Peratoner: “Eternity and infinity in Blaise Pascal and in the 17th Century geometrizing ontologies” 

14.30 Guidalberto Bormolini: “The breath of the cosmos. The experience of meditation as access to eternity and the divine dimension” 

15.00 Giulio Goggi: “The eternity of the being and the 'trace' of the Infinite in the finite” 

15.30 Ines Testoni: “Terror of death and eternity"

16.00 Luigi Grassi: “Beyond the limits of mental disease” 

17.00 Closure

Saturday 21 May 2022 

Teatro Ruzante

Eternity and time between philosophy and theology 

Chair: Santo Di Nuovo – Discussant: Ilaria Malaguti

9.00 Kurt Appel: The Eighth Day: Biblical Time as the Aufhebung (sublation) of Categorical Time 

9.30 Roberto Tommasi: Temporality, Eternity, Freedom. Reflections from Kierkegaard, Heidegger and Ricoeur 

10.00 Leonardo Messinese: The absolute appearance of the Eternal as the original meaning of time 

10.30-10.50 Break 

The divine annunciation of eternity

Chair: Roberto Tommasi – Discussant: Giulio Goggi

10.50 Giuseppe Barzaghi: Eternal Mystery-Design: the simultaneity of inspection

11.20 Andrea Toniolo: Time, revelation or negation of the Eternal? The modern metaphor of the 'death of God' 

11.50 Leopoldo Sandonà: “The us are eternal - "Die Wir sind ewig". Eternity and otherness from dialogical thought

Pre-arranged talks 

13.10 – 13.30 Discussion 

13.30 Closure