Sean Carroll’s “poetic naturalism” tries to make naturalism palatable to the rest of us. However, the reviewer points out that there are unanswered questions. The last few paragraphs ask some questions that many of us would want to ask Carroll. For example:
“Another challenge is understanding how thought, consciousness, and free will fit into physical theory. [. . .] But poetic naturalism should not be satisfied until it can include an account of how these elements emerge from fundamental physics or, if such an account is not forthcoming, why they do not involve nonphysical fundamental ontology.” (paywall)
It is rare for anyone to put the matter so clearly. Anyone can come up with a naturalist theory that leaves out “how thought, consciousness, and free will fit.” The poetry is optional.
See also: Debunking the debunker: How Sean Carroll gets the fine-tuning argument wrong (Vincent Torley)
New Scientist astounds: Information is physical
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