Re: Jefferys' review of Priviledged Planet

From: George L. <>
Date: Wed Jun 08 2005 - 12:11:30 EDT

> (1) Jefferys, like many secular astrophysicists presently, does not
see the
> multiverse hypothesis as at all metaphysical; whereas he sees the
> hypothesis as purely metaphysical and not at all scientific. My
hunch is
> that we could also find some astrophysicists who would find plenty of
> metaphysics in the multiverse hypothesis. Indeed as I have stated
> elsewhere, to a significant extent I suspect that multiverse
> *are* motivated by a desire to avoid design implications of fine
> tuning--just as steady state cosmogonies were motivated by similar
> This is not to say that inflation cannot imply that the multiverse
> have some merit, but it is to point out that the "universe generator"
> produces multiple universes is itself subject to "design" features.
> the standard argument on the part of the editors of scientific
> appears to go something like this: even though we cannot observe
> universes and will never interact with them, the hypothesis of
> (essentially unlimited) universes is fully scientific b/c it is the
> naturalistic game in town. The alternative, that the one universe we
> about is finely tuned in so many ways that it appears to have been
> purposefully created, can never under any circumstances be a rational
> conclusion that a scientist should entertain. The metaphysics
> this line of thinking is self-evident.

I agree that the popularity of multiverse theories is due in large part
to the fact that they provide a way of defusing AP arguments for
creation. But as you note they aren't motivated by that alone.
Linde's version, e.g., was a way of avoiding some of the problems with
the original inflationary scenario. The situation is indeed quite
similar to that with the steady state theory. While some people
(including at least 2 of its originators - I don't know about Gold)
liked it because it got rid of what looked like a "creation instant,"
it also solved what in the mid 40s was a very serious problem for
relativistic cosmologies, the fact that the Hubble time seemed to be
less than the age of the earth.

I don't much like multiverse theories as physics but have to recognize
that my dislike also has something to do with my religious beliefs.

George L. Murphy
Received on Wed Jun 8 12:12:27 2005

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