Re: [asa] Why it's not as simple as God vs the multiverse

From: David Opderbeck <dopderbeck@gmail.com>
Date: Thu Dec 04 2008 - 14:30:01 EST

I don't understand propositions #2 and #4.
On #2, I thought the idea is that there may be only one fine-tuned universe,
not an infinity of them; and that the infinity of possible universes is what
makes the highly improbable existence of a fine-tuned universe possible.

On #4, I thought the probability that God exists in a universe like ours --
one that is fine tuned -- is relatively high, not vanishingly small.

Has anyone raised an argument like this about the multiverse and fine
tuning:

1. A "universe" is a system of matter and energy.
2. "Life" is matter and energy in the form of a living thing.
3. The multiverse instantiates all possible universes.
4. Because of the multiverse, all possible universes with all possible
boundary conditions with respect to matter and energy exist.
5. Because of the multiverse, all possible forms of life requiring for
their existence any possible boundary conditions with respect to matter and
energy exist.
6. The boundary conditions for each universe within the multiverse,
including ours, are finely tuned to support the different forms of life
existing in each universe.
7. An infinity of finely tuned universes requires an infinite designer.

David W. Opderbeck
Associate Professor of Law
Seton Hall University Law School
Gibbons Institute of Law, Science & Technology

On Thu, Dec 4, 2008 at 1:05 PM, Murray Hogg <muzhogg@netspace.net.au> wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> The below is a pretty rough presentation of Alvin Plantinga's argument for
> the existence of God given a multiverse. It essentially takes the argument
> "evolution is very unlikely BUT given an infinite number of universes..."
> sort of argument and applies to to the idea that God's existence if very
> unlikely (BUT given an infinite number of universes...!). It's not a "knock
> down" argument - but it does evidence that it is indeed NOT as simple as
> "God vs the multiverse".
>
> The atheist has one of two choices (note that 1. is implicitly accepted by
> any person who seeks to avoid it by arguing for 2.);
>
> 1. There is one fine-tuned universe in which God probably exists
>
> OR
>
> 2. There are an infinity of universes in which fine-tuning exists therefore
> evolution in some universe is inevitable.
>
> HOWEVER one can then construct the following argument;
>
> On the Christian view of God;
>
> 3. If God exists in some universe like ours, he exists in every universe
> like ours
>
> What is conceded by the atheist;
>
> 4. The probability of God's existence in any universe like ours is
> vanishingly small
>
> 5. There are an infinite number of universes like ours
>
> But a vanishingly small probability tends to unity over an infinite number
> of instances, therefore from 4 and 5.
>
> 6. God exists in some universe like ours.
>
> Therefore, from 3;
>
> 7. God exists in every universe like ours.
>
> Therefore,
>
> 8. God exists in our universe.
>
> The bottom line: Atheists would be better accepting fine tuning and seeing
> it as simply "one of those things" rather than trying to argue that the
> probabilistic difficulties of evolution are overcome by positing a
> multiverse.
>
> Blessings,
> Murray
>
> Jack wrote:
>
>>
>>
>>
>> My concern about such a dichotomy isnt so much that there could be a third
>> alternative, but that it is assumed that the two possibilites given are
>> mutually exclusive. If the multiverse is true, does that prove that God
>> does not exist?
>>
>
> To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@calvin.edu with
> "unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
>

To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@calvin.edu with
"unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
Received on Thu Dec 4 14:31:07 2008

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Thu Dec 04 2008 - 14:31:07 EST