You can unsubscribe at any time and we'll never share your details to third parties. Theism holds no advantage by simply declaring that the fine tuning has a low chance of occurring. You might want to watch it before you get drunk tonight. All the models that we have come up with so far (such as string theory) seem to look like this: Model: Rehab no! It is a concept about freedom from *social* constraints. Various scientists have calculated that even the tiniest of changes to these constants would make life impossible. 99.999999999999999999999999999999999% of the universe is an uninhabitable mess. Certainly, organisms can live at extremes but to say that the universe is fine tuned so that some as yet undiscovered bacteria can eke out a meagre existence on Mars is almost laughable. Do I or a robot need the ability to reprogram ourselves to a sufficient degree to be considered morally responsible? Here Carroll takes apart the argument that the so-called fine tuning of the physical constants of the Universe constitutes evidence for God (the FTA). This is Sean Carrolls #3. Every ticket has the same chance of winning, and there may be 0, 1, or many winners. But in any event, I dont think your criticism of my crude Bayesian analysis is correct: If the stated model is assumed, then the single data point is highly informative, because a universe with life is so vanishingly unlikely under H1 and the stated model. We can only outline the possibilities. Why is that? The traditional analogy is to a lottery. So the fine-tuning puzzle evaporates. Until you do, you really have no idea how probable or improbable this universe is. What is free about it? They did end up this way. Another idea is that there is some deeper law of nature, which we have yet to discover, that sets the constants as they are. The question is, how unlikely is *that*? Im left scratching my head something we dont yet know the answer to is called wait for it a problem! Even if we define hole in such a way that holding water is a necessary property of holes (in this narrow technical sense), were still left with the question of why holes of that particular kind should exist in the first place. The multiverse answer is equivalent to saying there were a lot of tickets bought, so the odds of somebody winning is high. The only thing they can derive from this is that we dont have a good explanation for it yet; they dont get to fill in specific versions of their preferred deity and call it a day. In the context of criminal justice, that means rehabilitation (and quarantine until rehabilitation can be reasonably trusted to be effective). To be clear, its not a paradox its just a problem that admits several possible answers, and we dont know the correct one. Yet tumble it did if an avalanche happened, and calling that finetuning without quantifying finetuning is a no go, we could have anthropic selection for one. Perhaps it would be clearer if it were called the apparent fine tuning problem, since one of the proposed solutions is that there isnt really fine tuning, i.e. What the Universe is really and truly fine-tuned foris to turn everything into nothing. Fair enough, but if Adams isnt addressing cosmological fine-tuning, then Carroll cant be faulted for ignoring him.

Most of it is just barren space and what little specks of dust are to be found in between, they are hardly welcoming to life. Get weekly and/or daily updates delivered to your inbox. This document is subject to copyright. And so it is with even the tiniest, most inconsequential of decisions. Theists already believe in disembodied souls and a god, so they think intelligent life can exist without any physical constraints whatsoever. Carrolls written summary of the debate, including the fine-tuning argument, can be found in his post at Preposterious Universe. Today, Page says this idea is potentially falsifiable and says we already have evidence that does the trick. The only way that free will and morality ever seem to actually fit together is that free will is used as the excuse to shift the blame from the gods to us humans. Discover special offers, top stories, (I fear I am relying on anthropic reasoning now, so Ill stop there. You comments are getting munged. Apparent fine-tunings may be explained by dynamical mechanisms or improved notions of probability. 10^100 types of universe. THATs why we dont feel in the grips of an illusion when Answer: Because there is something and we are here. making decisions because for the most part, no important part of our decision making relies on this purported illusion. The two competitors of moral-nihilism are moral-universalism and moral-relativism. A better way to describe it is that if inflation is the only way to make long lasting universes it will happen. Therefore the measured value of the cosmological constant, which is positive, is evidence against the idea that the constants have been fine-tuned for life. Educators who stand up to conservative activists are being harassed and called groomers online, turning them into potential targets for real-world violence. Although most religious people do bring humans into the fine-tuning argument, more rational people can still wonder why the universe is capable of producing intelligent life of any kind. To be honest, I shy away from expressing it in Bayesian terms, because I dont think its particularly helpful. m not sure that many physicists think the answer is just because. See Seans comments that I posted above, when hes talking about physics, rather than debating a theologian. Heres the thinking. Indeed, it may well be the most precious thing there is about being human, for it defines who we are as individuals. Technically, the posterior probabilities are robust to the prior. I dont think Adams was even trying to answer this question. If he took a year off to work on his golf game hed go into the scholarship and university team a better golfer. Because then you cant really argue that most possible universe give rise to nothing. So P(datum given H1)=1. But some, no matter how scientific, might be afflicted by depression that makes them perpetually cynical, fatalistic, and functional nihilists. Theres also Tom Cruise. May you recover fully and quickly. Its a problem that arises because the best models that we have for how to build a universe have a lot of free parameters, and seem to allow a vast number of possible universes, most of which would be incompatible with life. A program that we had no part in designing and are therefore not responsible for. Thats not a sufficient amount of knowledge to say your odds of winning are so low that they pose a deep philosophical problem. Finding that these regions could be broader, or that other life-permitting regions exist, weakens the need for such explanations. Natural morality is easy to account for, especially since the advent of secular Western civilizations which operate mainly independent of authoritarian creeds. The Big Picture is an unprecedented scientific worldview, a tour de force that will sit on shelves alongside the works of Stephen Hawking, Carl Sagan, Daniel Dennett, and E. O. Wilson for years to come. It also seems to me that its a failure of imagination to think that the range of possible universes is merely limited to having different values for the constants., Assuming we discover why the constants have the values that they do. the applied science of psychiatry needs to address religion as organized schizophrenia. Snippet: since we know that the best of the theories developed so far allow about 10^500 different universes, anybody who argues that the universe must have same properties everywhere would have to prove that only one of these 10^500 universes is possible.Can we return back to the old picture of a single universe? But, if you think of human life as a natural system you dont have so much of a conflict. There is quit a bit that can be done with a cleaver scalpel to de-age an aging star. You cant, because nobody knows those things. Because it must based on the characteristics of the materials that comprise it. www.templeton.org/wp-content/u uning-research-1.pdf, Study shows that skyrmions and antiskyrmions can coexist at different temperatures, Mangrove forest found living in freshwater, Wasps able to tell the difference between 'same' and 'different', Highly collimated radio jets discovered around galaxy NGC 2663, A unique stone-skipping-like trajectory of asteroid Aletai, LQG Legend Writes Paper Claiming GR Explains Dark Matter Phenomena. But physicists do just call it the fine tuning problem. Copyright notice for material posted in this website, Worlds unluckiest person: man dies from cancer contracted from his tapeworm, Sean Carroll debunks the fine-tuning argument for God, Sean is giving the prestigious Gifford Lectures in October of next year in Glasgow, originally endowed to promote the study of natural theology, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fine-tuned_Universe#Examples, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKDCZHimElQ, http://darwinskidneys-science.com/2015/07/01/does-carbon-production-in-stars-reveal-design-in-nature/, The primacy of indigenous ways of knowing, A Leftist schoolteacher tells us that things are at least as bad as weve heard, Freddie deBoer disses New Atheism while attacking psychic phenomena and hooey. We shall see. Even if you formulate some redefinition of the term that applies to a real-world phenomenon, its only likely to be used to place blame and therefore justify retribution. Ignoring the empty space between the planets, not much of each planet is hospitable to life anyway. The special quality that leads to the probabilistic fine tuning problem defines life as anything self-aware that can ask questions about its own universe.

I think that theres an even more basic problem with the fine-tuning argument: it depends on the starting assumption that humans are special. Your son thought long and hard about his future and made the best decision he was capable of making. It acts like a kind of pressure that, depending on its value, acts against gravity to push the universe apart or acts with gravity to pull the universe together towards a final Big Crunch. No, I dont think it does and I dont think that all physicists agree that there is a fine-tuning problem. Since, as Carroll notes, this is the most sophisticated argument for God in theologians poorly stocked arsenal, its incumbent on us to understand why its wrong. PERIOD. I am a more advanced machine than the robots we are currently producing but only in degree. To count as a good explanation, you have to explain why things are this way and not some other way. The report then outlines arguments that fine-tuning is an illusion, noting that life may take a very different form than naively imagined, and that if multiple physical parameters are considered to vary simultaneously, it could alleviate any apparent fine-tuning problems. Not once did I ever hear my son appeal to his magical contra-causal powers when he explained his thinking on the subject because, of course, that didnt play at all, nor could it contribute at all, to solving the real world problems His puddle analogy always struck me as addressing Creationist arguments that it is amazing the Earth suits us so well, as if it were we, not the Earth, that appeared first. The only workable models that we have yet devised for our universe (string theory et al) seem to have a very large number of free parameters. When we talk about fine tuning on websites such as this or in debates with WLC, we mean fine tuning as an argument for god. The most simple, eloquent and convincing argument against fine tuning Ive ever heard is this: The solar system might harbour life other than on earth but it is, for the most part, uninhabitable. Kudos on the organizers for starting to include nonbelievers, who, after all, probably have something more substantive to say. Which god gave it to us so we might freely and willfully choose this heaven or that hell after being exposed to which holy writ? Biology or physics cannot tell us whats good or wrong, so some form of moral-skepticism is the only game in town if you want to be compatible with value-free-science. This is a huge simplification, but it should give the idea. Did I have any choice of whether or not to put some pineapple in the yoghurt I ate for breakfast this morning? Similarly, though the god must certainly know of the mid-ocean earthquake that will soon send a tsunami crashing over hundreds of thousands of people, the god would rather they be free to die in the ignorance he wills than that they should have the choice of whether to flee or drown. And to think, in the old Joan Crawford days, it was all done with make-up, lighting, and soft-focus lenses. Show me the data on what values the Plank Constant can attain. A somewhat stronger argument for God would be to say that theres a zero probability things naturally happened the way they did, but I think the real problem is assigning prior probabilities to a scenario where we have no comparable scenarios to figure out what the prior probability should be. An email response with different encoding perhaps? Some slower. And its true. I guess that if you see inflation, that constraint guarantees that inflation will happen despite that it needs to be finetuned to start which I think Sean has argued numerous times. In other words the cause is inexplicable. Theres no implication that the fine tuning problem in physics is some kind of irreconcilable paradox. Oooo I look forward to the compatibility bit since I keep trying for someone to convince me of that argument.

Even less sexy, it means a solid social infrastructure, including education and a safety net and mental health facilities, so you dont even get crime in the first place. he had to solve. His point is, I believe, that we think the universe was made for us, because we would not exist with different constants, missing the points that a) we are the way we are because they are tuned as they are, and b) other life-forms could have evolved with a different fine-tuning (who might think the universe was made for them). That the laws of this universe produced this one life form that can think about its origins, but that with the physical constants tuned differently, other self-conscious life forms might have developed.

Its possible someone, at some future time, will figure out the possible range of values for the Plank constant. What a wonderful statement on the question of what is free will, and the illusion of experiencing it. The few moral nihilist I know all seem to be consequentialists; they have no other means to justify their actions. The trickles of water may make fascinating and incredibly intricate patterns as they cascade down the hillside, but theres nothing guiding the water itself, nothing creating the patterns save the Universes Schrdinger equation. Nothing would be something else. Within the multiverse framework, it is not so surprising that humans should have evolved in one of the parallel realities in which conditions happen to be habitable for us. I guess the religious perversion of probability theory is what gets me.]. Id imagine the replies are not being typed directly into the comment box on the site for this to be happening. He distinguishes his position from those who advocate for contra-casual Free Will. Scientific minded atheists reject nihilism because of biology: Moral nihilists assert that morality does not inherently exist, and that any established moral values are abstractly contrived.. That raises the question of why they are so finely balanced. Show me the paper that describes, with evidence, what values the Plank constant can attain in universes. Life that looks like humans is unlikely, but thats not the requirement. Yes, agreed, but thats option (2) in my comment. Why Evolution is True is a blog written by Jerry Coyne, centered on evolution and biology but also dealing with diverse topics like politics, culture, and cats. I suppose we can seriously consider that the universe was fine-tuned to make a lot of Hydrogen. Sure, I can construct imaginary worlds in which I didntbut, in the real world, given the circumstances at the time, it was inevitable. To answer that question you have to assume that humans matter in some way, and that a universe without humans would be wrong. All the worlds a stage, and all the men and women merely players. What use free will, of any flavor, in such deliberations? The multiverse is a perfectly viable naturalistic explanation. Vaal is an advocate for Compatibilism, the proposition that Free Will is a real phenomenon that is compatible with the natural laws as we already understand them. I dont think free will is real, but we all seem to have this strong illusion. The outcome under consideration is a very natural category with a broad range. Anthropic principle explains why we see ours. If God had finely-tuned the universe for life, it would look very different indeed. Heres the advance summary: In short chapters filled with intriguing historical anecdotes, personal asides, and rigorous exposition, readers learn the difference between how the world works at the quantum level, the cosmic level, and the human leveland then how each connects to the other. or, by Foundational Questions Institute, FQXi. . It also seems to me that its a failure of imagination to think that the range of possible universes is merely limited to having different values for the constants. If not, it should be! The content is provided for information purposes only. Is Carroll not missing Douglas Adams puddle argument? That we are the necessary result of the settings we find, not that the constants were set so that we could exist. OK, I stumbled on the probabilities there. On the other hand, our universe is unlikely, by exactly the same criterion. Youd think that stable matter of some kind is required for life to evolve, at least. And as I usually would argue, there are dubious and arguable assumptions in Bens use of words like Feels like and Illusion.. Just like we are one self-conscious life-form in one universe. If you witnessed a priest raping a child in the name of a god, you wouldnt hesitate to call 9-1-1, at the very least. He never fails to blow my mind. So instead of directly creating life, God simply sets the conditions to maximise the chances of it forming. #3 is best stated as: What else does morality mean to an atheist other than a due consideration for the welfare of other sentient beings? Click on the screenshot to go to the listing: I expect that this book will be very good, summarizing Carrolls views on the implications of particle physics and cosmology for philosophy and our own self-image. Medical research advances and health news, The latest engineering, electronics and technology advances, The most comprehensive sci-tech news coverage on the web. This strikes me as unknowable. Maybe they do the same for him. In a debate with Lawrence Krause, WLC was asked what new evidence would change his mind about Christian and accept the other sides view. Quote from Hicipedia, by the way. At what point does a complex machine become morally responsible despite it never taking part in its initial design, programming or environment? No matter how vastly improbable an intelligent-life-suitable universe is, the anthropic principle ensures that either (1) we got vastly improbably lucky and have such a universe, or (2) nobody cares. As Hitchens might be heard to exclaim, THATS SOME FINE TUNING!!!. They are forgetting that the free parameters can all vary at the same time. term, free will?. H2: Generate Multiverse, p=0.5, Data: At least one universe exists, with life, Posterior probabilities (approx): Of course, you can overstretch (and overthink) any analogy. are spatially flat.. But the problem is, a lot of commenters on here seem to have misconstrued Seans excellent rhetoric when hes debating WLC. I will be partaking in some beer tonite. I miss the mobs with burning torches marching toward the castle chanting: Rehab no! Anthropic principle explains why we see ours. Ive never liked this argument either. That might be more effective. As adoption of digital assets accelerates, companies are investing in innovative products and services. ]. and Terms of Use. [Conditional] probabilities (approx): In ours, they are just right, which is why we have been able to evolve to observe them. We have moral responsibility because we can foresee the effects of our actions on others. Unless you have empirical evidence for what values the physical constants of the universe could attain. Yeah, I think I could make that fly. (1) Multiverse + anthropic principle. All that feels like were freely hopping from one alternate universe to another, willing all sorts of realities to manifest with reckless an unconstrained abandon. Nihilism is the truth in the broader moral/ethical debate, yet most atheists will grasp the lack of abstract moral certainty but will say, Yes thats right but dont call me a Nihilist. This site uses cookies to assist with navigation, analyse your use of our services, collect data for ads personalisation and provide content from third parties.

It could be that there is no conspiracy at all," says Sloan, whose research is also featured in the report. It doesnt tell you anything about c at all, except for a statement of what its observed to be. Agreed, which is why the response that I make to the fine-tuning argument is that if any of the parameters changed, there would be something else and the universe doesnt care. I did not get that part. Thats just the issue for physics and cosmology: with all the work that has gone into string theory, we cant find a model that doesnt look like this, that doesnt have the free parameters. It may be that the conditions in our universe are, in fact, the only possible conditions, and we just havent found the correct model yet. They have to explain why any physical universe exists at all. physics suggests this doesnt work though.. Of course we should work to discover why the universe is the way it is, but when we say theres no fine tuning problem it means theres nothing about the simple fact that the universe is the way it is that necessitates a frantic explanation like god. Show me in a paper where it describes based on evidence the set of discrete (or even analogy/continuous) values the constant can attain within that rannge. Never mind a convincing argument; Id be satisfied at this point with a coherent definition of the term that everybody can agree upon. This is a different problem though. Is that a Wiki for home brewers? Much better to focus on the future, looking to the past only for help in determining how to make the most of what is yet to come. If this reasoning is unsound then I really would like to understand why. Close. Every organization is now collecting data, but few are truly data driven. is the flatness problem does not exist; almost all Robertson-Walker cosmologies Some examples: of the word, free. As you Then again, as Lawrence Krauss has observed, that exact type of nothing is itself quite unstable (given enough time), and will spontaneously create everything from it. Its a continuation of a very long-standing discussion. I didnt select my genes or parents or upbringing or environment any more than a robot selected its mechatronics or programming. We all experience the phenomenon of imagining different potential futures, freely flipping in our minds from the expected results of one option available to us to another.

In other words WLC and his unfortunate type are completely committed and cannot even appreciate the joy of learning and discovery. They were knocking it out of the park, to put it mildly. How do we have any more control over our own conduct than a robot has over theirs? Adams doesnt come close to answering that; he just assumes it as a given. The decision-making process your son went through is very real and very important. For decades physicists have been perplexed about why our cosmos appears to have been precisely tuned to foster intelligent life. What do you gain from the faery dust of free will that you must sprinkle it on top? As a physicists, I have to echo Weinbergs thoughts: evolution is done and finished, there are no theistic holes, there never were since Darwin. How else to explain that he never seems to age? One of our sides most valuable So Page and others have examined the effects of changing this constant. Its not merely why they have the values that they do, but why they have the values needed to produce life. If there is only one universe, and if it were not suitable for intelligent life, then the issue of why it is not suitable would not arise. So any talk of the Universe being fine-tuned for this or that is just so much meaningless babble. Cosmology gets hit too, not just evolution. But, whatever the deficitif that stumbling block were not in the way, I would have done better (and maybe I will next time). Sean isnt saying that theres nothing interesting about the apparent fine tuning that we see, hes not saying physicists are not working on it, hes not saying nothing to see here.
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