From: Dr. Blake Nelson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Sun Sep 07 2003 - 09:02:53 EDT
I would simply point out that it is only a
Christianity killer to the extent one buys the
metaphysical assumptions and presumptions of Everett,
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
(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 <email@example.com> 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
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
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