Re: MHW - a different theological deduction

From: Dr. Blake Nelson (
Date: Sun Sep 07 2003 - 09:02:53 EDT

  • Next message: "Re: Van Till's Ultimate Gap"

    I would simply point out that it is only a
    Christianity killer to the extent one buys the
    metaphysical assumptions and presumptions of Everett,
    et al.

    One only needs to look at the history of theology in
    this one world that lots of things -- mechanistic
    determinism, "random" evolution, etc. have been
    considered Christianity killers. Clearly, they are
    not. A little rigorous thought about the actual
    scientific claims of MWH as opposed to the
    metaphysical or theological claims others want to
    import into it I think finds less and less to be
    theologically worried about.

    Re your commens about the incarnation -- it seems this
    is just a larger version of two questions 1) what
    about extraterrestrial life are they saved by the
    Incarnation? (And the simple answer is that *all* the
    universe or the multiverse is redeemed through the
    second person of the Trinity, whether that requires an
    Incarnation in a particulr multiverse is a matter
    beyond science); and 2) what form could the
    Incarnation? Which was debated rather absurdly IMHO
    by the Scholastics and has not been much of a
    theological concern (as far as I am aware) since that
    rather speculative exercise.

    I certainly generally agree with your comments that
    the Everett version of MWH(1) is extravagant in the
    extreme and seems on the same footing as Tipler's
    eschatological speculations.

    (2) MWH as an explanation of fine-tuning -- i.e., the
    initial conditions are as they are because lots of
    universes come into being is no religion killer and
    does not implicate Glenn's concerns at all because
    there is not necessarily a Glenn in any other

    (3) MWH as an explanation for quantum indeterminancy
    (all possible quantum outcomes are realized) is also
    not a religion killer any more than the mechanistic
    view of the universe up through the 19th century was a
    religion killer and some theological perspectives --
    e.g. variants of Calvinism -- embraced such views as
    displaying the sovereignty of God.

    Anyway, having repeated myself too frequently, I don't
    see how even Everett's extravagant claims re MWH pose
    any real threat to Christianity unless one assumes a
    boatload of unjustified metaphysical assumptions.
    BTW, I think Everett's MWH is rather silly, in the
    same category as Tipler's eschatology mentioned above.
    --- Steve Bishop <> wrote:


     While the MWH may not be a 'religion killer', it
    certainly is a 'Christianity killer'.


    Why invent many different worlds? MWH scientists
    perceive them to be the simplest explanation in that
    they require the least addition of assumptions to
    predict correctly experimental results. However, the
    one assumption it does make is such a mammoth one! It
    seems a large assumption to make to keep hold of an
    "objective reality".


    If in these world there are other "you"s, what
    implications does this have for the nature of
    humanity. No longer are we unique, it only feels like
    it. Our uniqueness is an illusion!


    What implications does this have for the incarnation?
    Does it mean that God had to be incarnated in each
    world? What does that mean for the Trinity? Is it
    possible that Jesus chose a different path in any of
    these worlds? Could there be a world in which Jeus
    did not choose the cross - what happens about
    redemption in that world then?


    Can God really be said to be the creator when these
    worlds spring into existence at each quantum decision?


    Everett viewed the universes as totally autonomous
    with no interaction betweeen them. David Deutsh thinks
    that there any be occasions when they do interact.


    These universes cannot be seen or communicated with so
    they cannot even be used to justify occult phenomenon
    such as UFOs or ... . However, neither can they be
    verified or falsified. There existence is a step of


    This appproach completely blunts Occam's razor!


    The MWH is in many ways a faith position. Each world
    is created ex nihilo.


    It has many theological implications many of which are
    incompatible with a Christian worldview.


    It is no wonder that Wheeler, though once advocating a
    MWH approach, rejected it as carrying too much
    metaphysical baggage.




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