Friday, August 27, 2010

Recommended Read™: A Universe Built For Us

Hopefully instructive figure showing that the ...Image via Wikipedia
In 2008 Discovery Magazine published Science's Alternative to an Intelligent Creator: the Multiverse Theory. The tag: "Our universe is perfectly tailored for life. That may be the work of God or the result of our universe being one of many."

Tom Gilson deconstructs the article, and the issues involved, here.

A Ball Bounces Recommended Read.™

Enjoy.
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7 comments:

P@J said...

Not really a deconstruction, more a bit of creative quote-mining.

Still, you are repeating a patently false dichotomy: either one specific model of the universe is absolutely correct, or we have to accept that there is some omniscient, omnipotent intelligent being that poofed it all into existence. Hopefully, you can see the flaw in this logic.

The existence of multiverses, the existence of God, and “string theory” in general, have one thing in common: all are completely untestable hypotheses, and as long as legitimate scientists are wasting their time staring down that particular rabbit hole, our understanding of the universe is not moving forward. The book “The Trouble with Physics” is an excellent book and explores this at length. Also a good example of science being critical of itself.

Notably, nothing in the multiverse or string theory models cast any doubt on the reality of the Big Bang taking place ~13billion years ago, or the development of the solar system, or the development and subsequent evolution of life forms by natural selection. There are a lot of babies in the bathwater you are always so critical of.

Anonymous said...

We are in a multiverse and that was part of the 'design' and that can be proven. (real conservative)

P@J said...

Quote from the Discover article, see if you can spot the weasel words:

“…if we double the mass of the electron, life as we know it will disappear. If we change the strength of the interaction between protons and electrons, life will disappear. If we had four space dimensions and one time dimension, then planetary systems would be unstable and our version of life would be impossible. If we had two space dimensions and one time dimension, we would not exist,” he says.

Notice in the first and third sentences he says “life as we know it” and “our version of life”. This is what we call the anthropic argument. It seems hardly surprising that we observe a universe that suits our living in it. If it didn’t suit us, we wouldn’t be here to observe it. However, that doesn’t preclude something else observing it.

RkBall said...

"Still, you are repeating a patently false dichotomy: either one specific model of the universe is absolutely correct, or we have to accept that there is some omniscient, omnipotent intelligent being that poofed it all into existence. Hopefully, you can see the flaw in this logic."

I certainly can, because it is a mischaracterization, your mischaracterization. I hope you can see the flaws in it.

RkBall said...

"Notice in the first and third sentences he says “life as we know it” and “our version of life”. This is what we call the anthropic argument."

Any other kind of life, e.g., non-carbon, would be nothing more than a conjecture as there is zero evidence that this kind of life exists or even would be possible. In our universe, carbon-based life is the only game in town, and the only life that requires explanation.

The weasel words are there precisely because it makes some people uncomfortable to think that the universe is fine-tuned to accommodate us. It has nothing to do with weakening the actual facts on the table, and these are what require explanation.

Joe said...

P@J the big bang is often used by Christians as evidence FOR the handiwork of God. After all the big bang could not have happened had there not been a cause.

RkBall said...

"However, that doesn’t preclude something else observing it."

Ah, now I see where you get flying spaghetti monsters from. They would observe it.

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