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Multiverse concepts just redefine universe without giving notice?

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Blogger Iliocentric observes (September 25, 2011), re the multiverse,

The Edge of ‘The Universe’, or thoughts about “meta-verses” and “multi-verses” –

Aside from the fact that these silly concepts are dishonest equivocations — for these and all similar concepts are but attempts to redefine the term ‘universe’ (*) without giving notice — in seeking to demote the concept “the universe” from referring to *all* physical things to referring *some* physical things, the equivocators are also asserting that there is such a thing as “the edge of the universe”. Yet, according to modern physics (and do not these persons *always* assert that their assertions are grounded in science?), the very idea of an edge of the universe is incoherent.


2 Replies to “Multiverse concepts just redefine universe without giving notice?

  1. 1
    jstanley01 says:

    The link in the OP goes to an Amazon page for a David Deutsch book.

    I think this is the blog post you’re citing.

  2. 2

    Cosmology has always been on the boundary between science and metascience, or between physics and metaphysics. And as far as words go, “multiverse” is a completely incoherent metaphysical word, and only avoids gibberish inasmuch as it is used to describe a particular physical model of reality. Of course, models of reality ARE metaphysics, so that is why it is peculiar–it has a dab of physics but no metaphysics as far as I can tell. Cosmologists get away with this ruse because no one learns metaphysics nowadays, and this lets them demagogue about infinities and intrinsically unobservable events without the child crying out that the Emperor has no clothes.

    So in this ocean of ignorance and willful equivocation, the “edge of the universe” seems a quibble. It was worth arguing over when “universe” meant something, but if the word multiverse appears in the same sentence than “edges” are merely a trifle. That is, the universe used to infinite, so the “edge” was a strange finite boundary to an infinite object, but multiverse is a infinite infinite, making edges two infinities removed. And as John Wheeler once lectured at the one time I ever saw him, “the edge of an edge is zero.” The Titan Multiverse has swallowed up his children, edges and all.

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