Thursday, August 14, 2008

Quote of the Day: Apparent Conflict with "Common Wisdom"

Drs. Dekel and Zehavi, Cosmologists

“This type of universe, however, seems to require a degree of fine tuning of the initial conditions that is in apparent conflict with ‘common wisdom’.” (h/t

Avishai Dekel holds the Andre Aisenstadt Chair of Theoretical Physics at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is known for his study of the formation of galaxies and large-scale structure in the dark matter-dark energy dominated Universe.

Idit Zehavi is an astrophysicist. Her research interests include cosmology and the large-scale structure of the universe, galaxy biasing, galaxy formation and evolution, structure formation, clustering of galaxies and cosmic flows.

She is an Asssistant Professor at Case Western Reserve University.


MgS said...

It doesn't matter how many people you put forth to advance a teleological argument, it's still a teleological argument.

The great unanswered question remains - upon what evidence can you demonstrate the reality of the supernatural that is implied in the argument?

RkBall said...

Hi Mgs,

Good to hear from you again; I know you keep asking this, and at some point I'm going to try to develop a fuller answer.

For now, let me just say this:

The reality of the supernatural would be more an inference than a demonstrated reality at this point in the argument.

If one reaches the conclusion that a universe with a beginning, improbably tuned to support life, implies a creative force, then, this creative force is by definition outside of nature and the material world.

A-material implies immaterial; immaterial implies spiritual or supernatural. Fine-tuning also implies intention and intelligence. Based on what we know from our experience in this universe, Intelligence implies consciousness, and great intelligence implies personality and personhood. Not a proof, but a decent inference.

From there, you might scan the history of world religions for a religion that claims to intersect with the supernatural. The best IMO would be Christianity. The crowning glory of Christianity is the resurrection of Christ -- an intersection of materiality (time and space), history, and the supernatural.

The next step would be to enter in experientially, as I did. Reason can take you to the door, but only faith can take you over the threshold.

Jesus Christ directed some definite sayings towards "seekers". He specifically said that if a person's heart was right, and that they truly wanted to know, they would come to know that he was from God, and his message was from God.

The experiential dimension of Christianity is like diving into a pool -- it takes you beyond the realm of thought, beyond the realm of reason, beyond the realm of mere speculation, into the experiential reality of God.

And that is a very nice place to be.

"... nothing intellectually compelling or challenging.. bald assertions coupled to superstition... woefully pathetic"