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Physics and the god debates

September 26th, 2012 · No Comments

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/18/science-god-biology-astronomy-physics-deity_n_1894010.html?utm_hp_ref=science

The obsession with theology has now done to physics what it did to biology, and the result is a physics I don’t trust anymore. The whole atheism discussion, a phase I went through in college, might learn from my experience and graduate to a big nothing of agnosticism, while it reconsiders its position, and, yes, maybe defines the ‘god’ claimed to not exist.
That said, there is something called ‘dialectic’ and the dialectical dipole exercise of negation here is a strong step toward full employment among philosophers. Negation clears the air, and keeps theologians on their toes, reminding them that they only rarely know what they are talking about.
And it is useful to be challenged with such progress in physics as might demand leaving behind the Big Bang card. Theologians have second guessed physicists for a whole generation here, but physics is moving on. I don’t think it will make much difference. The Big Bang was never a coherent theme, and doing without it will not change the ‘god’ debates.
Science is simply not able to deal with this question (so why should theologians be any better), and its failures are even more drastic: it cannot resolve the question of evolution, of human emergence, human psychology and consciousness. It is a bit foolish, vaulting ambition, to tackle the god question if your failures are that drastic. But, like theologians, physicists are true believers, and don’t listen to reason.
Sad to say, physicists, like Darwinists, have taken to cheating. The fine-tuning argument, which theologians have exploited as a false proof of god, can’t be dismissed with the junk theory of multiverses. Physicists have almost enforced this lie, like Darwinists with natural selection, but they are not likely to get away with it.
To me fine-tuning is a naturalistic state of affairs, and is needed to understand the emergence of life. But everyone is so obsessed by theology, that the fine-tuning question is a casualty of double idiocy.

Theologians often seize upon the so-called “fine-tuning” of the physical constants as evidence that God must have had a hand in them; it seems he chose the constants just for us. But contemporary physics explains our seemingly supernatural good luck in a different way.

Some versions of quantum gravity theory, including string theory, predict that our life-giving universe is but one of an infinite number of universes that altogether make up the multiverse. Among these infinite universes, the full range of values of all the physical constants are represented, and only some of the universes have values for the constants that enable the formation of stars, planets and life as we know it. We find ourselves in one of the lucky universes (because where else?). [Parallel Universes Explained in 200 Words]

There are too many ways to rediscover ‘god’ here for this discussion to be relevant, beyond the simple need for ‘dialectical’ zigzag. I think that, as I have pointed out in Descent of Man Revisited, that the question of supernatural ‘god’ is beyond knowledge, while the question of a ‘demiurge’ is a naturalistic one.

As I have pointed out many times, the question of ‘soul’, for example, is different from that of the supernatural. And this, remarkably, is related to another key question: are there aliens, and why don’t we see them. And the nature of consciousness, as explored in, say, buddhism, is simply beyond the capacity of currently trained scientists, it seems, and the list of such limitations should teach humility about theological certainties.
So if your science and technology and so primitive that you can’t detect ‘souls’, find any aliens (or explain why they aren’t there), say where buddhas go after enlightenment, it is highly unlikely you will ever even figure out the demiurge question, what to say of graduating to the ‘god’ question, and issues of ‘super nature’.

Golly, look at the movie Avatar: they transmit souls between bodies in one flick of a Hollywood switch. God debates are even more advanced than that.

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