Cosmology News

Multiverse strikes back

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Readers will remember Peter Woit, a most interesting mathematician at Columbia, who is not a creationist (Except insofar as the term no longer means anything except “shut UP about our tax/donor-funded nonsense!!”)

Noting the continued promotion of multiverse theory, he reports,

Symmetry, the FNAL/SLAC run online magazine funded by the DOE, today is running a piece of multiverse mania entitled Is this the only universe?. It’s a rather standard example of the pseudo-scientific hype that has flooded the popular scientific media for the last 10-15 years.Besides the usual anthropic argument for the size of the CC, the evidence for the multiverse is string theory: …

The multiverse is  all ridiculous, of course and has nothing to do with serious science research, like the Pluto flyby.  It shows how much tax money can be wasted on nonsense.

Here is why it happens

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16 Replies to “Multiverse strikes back

  1. 1
    Seversky says:

    It might well be. It doesn’t really matter to me one way or the other. Why are you so keen that it be false?

  2. 2
    Dr JDD says:

    This is telling:

    Nomura says the way to test the idea is by looking at the universe’s spatial curvature (which, according to Planck is zero within the experimental uncertainties). According to Nomura, the implications for the multiverse of possible more accurate measurements of the spatial curvature are

    If it remains zero, that’s consistent with the multiverse.
    If it is negative, that’s “strong evidence of a multiverse”.
    If it is positive, that’s a problem for some multiverse models, but not evidence against the multiverse, because you can’t have evidence against the multiverse:

    a positively curved universe would show that there’s something wrong with our current theory of the multiverse, while not necessarily proving there’s only one. (Proving that is a next-to-impossible task. If there are other universes out there that don’t interact with ours in any sense, we can’t prove whether they exist.)

    In other words, nothing falsifies the theory.

    Where have we heard that before?

    Something completely different in distant related species – random evolution.

    Something highly similar in distant related species – convergent evolution.

    Change very gradual and slow – evolution takes time.

    Change sudden and rapid – Evolution can be quick when needed.

    No change despite millions of apparent years – evolution doesn’t need to happen (in a stable environment/no selection pressures).

    Heads or tails, you win. Gotta love this approach to science.

  3. 3
    Dr JDD says:

    Seversky – it is nothing to do with it being true or false. Why do people not understand this?

    It is simply further evidence that science is led by belief systems and driven by opinion and worldviews. Not by following the facts – that is a cover, and it does happen where ego and worldviews are not affected, but the multiverse is one example (where materialistic evolution and abiogenesis is another) that what drives the need for the story and narrative is to satisfy one’s material beliefs and commitment to naturalism.

    The same is true of the multiverse – it is not driven by scientific principles but rather the need to explain away something that infers special design and purpose (anthropic principle) and was born out of that. I.e. to support one worldview and reject another.

    That is not science. This is the point that we should call on this as rubbish – its not about whether the theory is true or not, it is not testable.

    consantly materialists and modern science states you cannot accept a theistic position in science because all things must be explained through natural mechanisms and to say there is a God who did X, Y and Z is unscientific because you cannot test it, it doesn’t predict anything and has no mathematical veracity to it.

    Guess what? the multiverse is untestable (see above), doesn’t predict anything and has no mathematical veracity to it.

    Most materialists don’t see a problem with this though because it does not negatively affect their world view (in fact it supports it) so they are happy to not call it on its pseudoscience. As soon as you claim an alternative is a god/God then suddenly they get upset and mock you as being unscientific.

    Pot. Kettle. Black.

  4. 4
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky states,

    “It might well be. It doesn’t really matter to me one way or the other. Why are you so keen that it be false?”

    So you, whoever the illusion of “you” is in materialism, think that the multiverse might be true but provide no empirical evidence that it might be true other than your own personal subjective opinion?
    But why should anyone care what your personal subjective opinion is since there is, given materialism, really no “you” in the first place?

    “What you’re doing is simply instantiating a self: the program run by your neurons which you feel is “you.””
    Jerry Coyne
    https://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2015/04/04/eagleton-on-baggini-on-free-will/

    The Confidence of Jerry Coyne – January 6, 2014
    Excerpt: But then halfway through this peroration, we have as an aside the confession that yes, okay, it’s quite possible given materialist premises that “our sense of self is a neuronal illusion.” At which point the entire edifice suddenly looks terribly wobbly — because who, exactly, is doing all of this forging and shaping and purpose-creating if Jerry Coyne, as I understand him (and I assume he understands himself) quite possibly does not actually exist at all? The theme of his argument is the crucial importance of human agency under eliminative materialism, but if under materialist premises the actual agent is quite possibly a fiction, then who exactly is this I who “reads” and “learns” and “teaches,” and why in the universe’s name should my illusory self believe Coyne’s bold proclamation that his illusory self’s purposes are somehow “real” and worthy of devotion and pursuit? (Let alone that they’re morally significant: But more on that below.) Prometheus cannot be at once unbound and unreal; the human will cannot be simultaneously triumphant and imaginary.
    http://douthat.blogs.nytimes.c.....oyne/?_r=0

    You see Seversky, in perhaps the most ironic twist of logic imaginable, atheists, in their denial of the existence of God, end up denying that they themselves really exist as real persons:

    “Hawking’s entire argument is built upon theism. He is, as Cornelius Van Til put it, like the child who must climb up onto his father’s lap into order to slap his face.
    Take that part about the “human mind” for example. Under atheism there is no such thing as a mind. There is no such thing as understanding and no such thing as truth. All Hawking is left with is a box, called a skull, which contains a bunch of molecules. Hawking needs God In order to deny Him.”
    – Cornelius Hunter
    Photo – an atheist contemplating his mind
    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-H-kj.....0/rob4.jpg

    Who wrote Richard Dawkins’s new book? – October 28, 2006
    Excerpt: Dawkins: What I do know is that what it feels like to me, and I think to all of us, we don’t feel determined. We feel like blaming people for what they do or giving people the credit for what they do. We feel like admiring people for what they do.,,,
    Manzari: But do you personally see that as an inconsistency in your views?
    Dawkins: I sort of do. Yes. But it is an inconsistency that we sort of have to live with otherwise life would be intolerable.,,,
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....02783.html

    Faith and Science – Dr. Raymond Bohlin – video – (2015) (48:46 minute mark)
    https://youtu.be/vTIp1kgSqzU?t=2552

    “that “You”, your joys and your sorrows, your memories and your ambitions, your sense of personal identity and free will, are in fact no more than the behaviour of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules. As Lewis Carroll’s Alice might have phrased: “You’re nothing but a pack of neurons.” This hypothesis is so alien to the ideas of most people today that it can truly be called astonishing.”
    Francis Crick – “The Astonishing Hypothesis” 1994

    “We have so much confidence in our materialist assumptions (which are assumptions, not facts) that something like free will is denied in principle. Maybe it doesn’t exist, but I don’t really know that. Either way, it doesn’t matter because if free will and consciousness are just an illusion, they are the most seamless illusions ever created. Film maker James Cameron wishes he had special effects that good.”
    Matthew D. Lieberman – neuroscientist – materialist – UCLA professor

    This is all the more ironic since the most sure thing that we can know about reality is the fact that we really exist as real persons.
    David Chalmers is semi-famous for getting the ‘hard problem’ of consciousness across to lay people in a very easy to understand manner:

    David Chalmers on Consciousness (Philosophical Zombies and the Hard Problem) – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NK1Yo6VbRoo

    Of supplemental note to what is real and what is illusory, this quote, from a from a fairly dramatic Near Death Experiencer in which the man had been pronounced dead for over 90 minutes, caught my eye yesterday:

    “More real than anything I’ve experienced since. When I came back of course I had 34 operations, and was in the hospital for 13 months. That was real but heaven is more real than that. The emotions and the feelings. The reality of being with people who had preceded me in death.”
    – Don Piper – “90 Minutes in Heaven,” 10 Years Later – video (2:54 minute mark)
    https://youtu.be/3LyZoNlKnMM?t=173

    Also of note: Don Piper’s experience has now been made into a movie and will be released September 11:

    90 Minutes In Heaven – In Theaters September 11 – trailer
    http://90minutesinheaventhemovie.com/

  5. 5
    bornagain77 says:

    A few more notes along the ‘more real than real’ line:

    Memories of Near Death Experiences (NDEs): More Real Than Reality? – Mar. 27, 2013
    Excerpt: University of Liège researchers have demonstrated that the physiological mechanisms triggered during NDE lead to a more vivid perception not only of imagined events in the history of an individual but also of real events which have taken place in their lives!,,,
    ,,,researchers,, have looked into the memories of NDE with the hypothesis that if the memories of NDE were pure products of the imagination, their phenomenological characteristics (e.g., sensorial, self referential, emotional, etc. details) should be closer to those of imagined memories. Conversely, if the NDE are experienced in a way similar to that of reality, their characteristics would be closer to the memories of real events.
    The researchers compared the responses provided by three groups of patients, each of which had survived (in a different manner) a coma, and a group of healthy volunteers. They studied the memories of NDE and the memories of real events and imagined events with the help of a questionnaire which evaluated the phenomenological characteristics of the memories. The results were surprising. From the perspective being studied, not only were the NDEs not similar to the memories of imagined events, but the phenomenological characteristics inherent to the memories of real events (e.g. memories of sensorial details) are even more numerous in the memories of NDE than in the memories of real events.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....190359.htm

    ‘Afterlife’ feels ‘even more real than real,’ researcher says – Wed April 10, 2013
    Excerpt: “If you use this questionnaire … if the memory is real, it’s richer, and if the memory is recent, it’s richer,” he said.
    The coma scientists weren’t expecting what the tests revealed.
    “To our surprise, NDEs were much richer than any imagined event or any real event of these coma survivors,” Laureys reported.
    The memories of these experiences beat all other memories, hands down, for their vivid sense of reality. “The difference was so vast,” he said with a sense of astonishment.
    Even if the patient had the experience a long time ago, its memory was as rich “as though it was yesterday,” Laureys said.
    http://www.cnn.com/2013/04/09/.....periences/

    A Doctor’s Near Death Experience Inspires a New Life – video
    Quote: “It’s not like a dream. It’s like the world we are living in is a dream and it’s kind of like waking up from that.”
    Dr. Magrisso
    http://www.nbcchicago.com/on-a.....31791.html

    Medical Miracles – Dr. Mary Neal’s Near Death Experience – video (More real than real 37:49 minute mark)
    https://youtu.be/WCNjmWP2JjU?t=2269

  6. 6
    anthropic says:

    BA 4
    “But why should anyone care what your personal subjective opinion is since there is, given materialism, really no “you” in the first place?”

    In essence, you’re asking Seversky to repent of this idea and turn his thinking around.

    Technically I believe that’s known as a “you turn.”

  7. 7
    bornagain77 says:

    “Technically I believe that’s known as a “you turn.””

    🙂 Funny

    Yes, a “you turn” from his illusory world of atheistic materialism to the real world of Theism:

    Alain Aspect and Anton Zeilinger by Richard Conn Henry – Physics Professor – John Hopkins University
    Excerpt: Why do people cling with such ferocity to belief in a mind-independent reality? It is surely because if there is no such reality, then ultimately (as far as we can know) mind alone exists. And if mind is not a product of real matter, but rather is the creator of the “illusion” of material reality (which has, in fact, despite the materialists, been known to be the case, since the discovery of quantum mechanics in 1925), then a theistic view of our existence becomes the only rational alternative to solipsism (solipsism is the philosophical idea that only one’s own mind is sure to exist). (Dr. Henry’s referenced experiment and paper – “An experimental test of non-local realism” by S. Gröblacher et. al., Nature 446, 871, April 2007 – “To be or not to be local” by Alain Aspect, Nature 446, 866, April 2007 (Leggett’s Inequality: Violated, as of 2011, to 120 standard deviations)
    http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/aspect.html

    Quantum physics says goodbye to reality – Apr 20, 2007
    Excerpt: Many realizations of the thought experiment have indeed verified the violation of Bell’s inequality. These have ruled out all hidden-variables theories based on joint assumptions of realism, meaning that reality exists when we are not observing it; and locality, meaning that separated events cannot influence one another instantaneously. But a violation of Bell’s inequality does not tell specifically which assumption – realism, locality or both – is discordant with quantum mechanics.
    Markus Aspelmeyer, Anton Zeilinger and colleagues from the University of Vienna, however, have now shown that realism is more of a problem than locality in the quantum world. They devised an experiment that violates a different inequality proposed by physicist Anthony Leggett in 2003 that relies only on realism, and relaxes the reliance on locality. To do this, rather than taking measurements along just one plane of polarization, the Austrian team took measurements in additional, perpendicular planes to check for elliptical polarization.
    They found that, just as in the realizations of Bell’s thought experiment, Leggett’s inequality is violated – thus stressing the quantum-mechanical assertion that reality does not exist when we’re not observing it. “Our study shows that ‘just’ giving up the concept of locality would not be enough to obtain a more complete description of quantum mechanics,” Aspelmeyer told Physics Web. “You would also have to give up certain intuitive features of realism.”
    http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/27640

    Reality doesn’t exist until we measure it, (Delayed Choice) quantum experiment confirms –
    Mind = blown. – FIONA MACDONALD – 1 JUN 2015
    Excerpt: “It proves that measurement is everything. At the quantum level, reality does not exist if you are not looking at it,” lead researcher and physicist Andrew Truscott said in a press release.
    http://www.sciencealert.com/re.....t-confirms

    New Mind-blowing Experiment Confirms That Reality Doesn’t Exist If You Are Not Looking at It – June 3, 2015
    Excerpt: The results of the Australian scientists’ experiment, which were published in the journal Nature Physics, show that this choice is determined by the way the object is measured, which is in accordance with what quantum theory predicts.
    “It proves that measurement is everything. At the quantum level, reality does not exist if you are not looking at it,” said lead researcher Dr. Andrew Truscott in a press release.,,,
    “The atoms did not travel from A to B. It was only when they were measured at the end of the journey that their wave-like or particle-like behavior was brought into existence,” he said.
    Thus, this experiment adds to the validity of the quantum theory and provides new evidence to the idea that reality doesn’t exist without an observer.
    http://themindunleashed.org/20.....at-it.html

    The Mental Universe – Richard Conn Henry – Professor of Physics John Hopkins University
    Excerpt: The only reality is mind and observations, but observations are not of things. To see the Universe as it really is, we must abandon our tendency to conceptualize observations as things.,,, Physicists shy away from the truth because the truth is so alien to everyday physics. A common way to evade the mental universe is to invoke “decoherence” – the notion that “the physical environment” is sufficient to create reality, independent of the human mind. Yet the idea that any irreversible act of amplification is necessary to collapse the wave function is known to be wrong: in “Renninger-type” experiments, the wave function is collapsed simply by your human mind seeing nothing. The universe is entirely mental,,,, The Universe is immaterial — mental and spiritual. Live, and enjoy.
    http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/The.mental.universe.pdf

    Music and Verse:

    Eagles – Desperado – Live
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kCdjvTTnzDU

    Luke 15:7
    I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.

  8. 8
    leodp says:

    BA: Are there any versions of materialistic philosophy or argument that allow credible or logical support for ‘self’ being real as we commonly/intuitively/instinctually believe? Certainly we all live *as though* there is a real I and thou with some form of free will apart from our sparking neurons. The only alternative is nihilistic insanity and a big gulp of the Kool-Aid. IOW, are the candid admissions of ‘self as an illusion’ quotes you’ve cited outliers not compelled by materialistic assumptions, or is this a not-often-admitted trade secret realized or held by the purveyors but only occasionally let out to see the light?

  9. 9
    bornagain77 says:

    “Are there any versions of materialistic philosophy or argument that allow credible or logical support for ‘self’ being real as we commonly/intuitively/instinctually believe?”

    Not according to these twenty-three philosophers

    The Waning of Materialism Edited by Robert C. Koons and George Bealer
    Description: Twenty-three philosophers examine the doctrine of materialism and find it wanting. The case against materialism comprises arguments from conscious experience, from the unity and identity of the person, from intentionality, mental causation, and knowledge. The contributors include leaders in the fields of philosophy of mind, metaphysics, ontology, and epistemology, who respond ably to the most recent versions and defenses of materialism. The modal arguments of Kripke and Chalmers, Jackson’s knowledge argument, Kim’s exclusion problem, and Burge’s anti-individualism all play a part in the building of a powerful cumulative case against the materialist research program. Several papers address the implications of contemporary brain and cognitive research (the psychophysics of color perception, blindsight, and the effects of commissurotomies), adding a posteriori arguments to the classical a priori critique of reductionism. All of the current versions of materialism–reductive and non-reductive, functionalist, eliminativist, and new wave materialism–come under sustained and trenchant attack.
    http://www.oup.com/us/catalog/.....0199556199

  10. 10
    Seversky says:

    Dr JDD @ 2

    In other words, nothing falsifies the theory.

    Where have we heard that before?

    Something completely different in distant related species – random evolution.

    Something highly similar in distant related species – convergent evolution.

    Change very gradual and slow – evolution takes time.

    Change sudden and rapid – Evolution can be quick when needed.

    No change despite millions of apparent years – evolution doesn’t need to happen (in a stable environment/no selection pressures).

    Heads or tails, you win. Gotta love this approach to science.

    Whoever said that evolution had to take place at a fixed rate? Certainly not Darwin. Why shouldn’t it happen faster or slower depending on environmental pressures? How does that falsify the basic premise that living things change over time?

    Yes, theories get changed to fit new observations. That’s how it’s supposed to work. It’s a feature not a bug. You’d be the first to complain of scientists stuck to a particular explanation regardless of contradictory data.

    As I understand it, the multiverse “theory” is a mathematical conjecture and if there is no way to test it, not even in principle, then that is all it will ever be. What’s wrong with playing around with conjectures?

  11. 11
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky asks

    Why shouldn’t it happen faster or slower depending on environmental pressures? How does that falsify the basic premise that living things change over time?

    And yet we find:

    Darwin’s Legacy – Donald R. Prothero – February 2012
    Excerpt: In four of the biggest climatic-vegetational events of the last 50 million years, the mammals and birds show no noticeable change in response to changing climates. No matter how many presentations I give where I show these data, no one (including myself) has a good explanation yet for such widespread stasis despite the obvious selective pressures of changing climate.
    http://www.skeptic.com/eskeptic/12-02-15/#feature

    Seversky also claims:

    Yes, theories get changed to fit new observations. That’s how it’s supposed to work. It’s a feature not a bug.

    Yet the only evidence ever witnessed for the unlimited plasticity postulated by Darwinism is within the theory itself!

    “Being an evolutionist means there is no bad news. If new species appear abruptly in the fossil record, that just means evolution operates in spurts. If species then persist for eons with little modification, that just means evolution takes long breaks. If clever mechanisms are discovered in biology, that just means evolution is smarter than we imagined. If strikingly similar designs are found in distant species, that just means evolution repeats itself. If significant differences are found in allied species, that just means evolution sometimes introduces new designs rapidly. If no likely mechanism can be found for the large-scale change evolution requires, that just means evolution is mysterious. If adaptation responds to environmental signals, that just means evolution has more foresight than was thought. If major predictions of evolution are found to be false, that just means evolution is more complex than we thought.”
    ~ Cornelius Hunter

    “When their expectations turn out to be false, evolutionists respond by adding more epicycles to their theory that the species arose spontaneously from chance events. But that doesn’t mean the science has confirmed evolution as Velasco suggests. True, evolutionists have remained steadfast in their certainty, but that says more about evolutionists than about the empirical science.”
    ~ Cornelius Hunter

    Here’s That Algae Study That Decouples Phylogeny and Competition – June 17, 2014
    Excerpt: “With each new absurdity another new complicated just-so story is woven into evolutionary theory. As Lakatos explained, some theories simply are not falsifiable. But as a result they sacrifice realism and parsimony.”
    – Cornelius Hunter
    http://darwins-god.blogspot.co.....uples.html

  12. 12
    Seversky says:

    Dr JDD @ 3

    Seversky – it is nothing to do with it being true or false. Why do people not understand this?

    It is simply further evidence that science is led by belief systems and driven by opinion and worldviews. Not by following the facts – that is a cover, and it does happen where ego and worldviews are not affected, but the multiverse is one example (where materialistic evolution and abiogenesis is another) that what drives the need for the story and narrative is to satisfy one’s material beliefs and commitment to naturalism.

    All of which is just another version of a conspiracy theory, the last refuge of the crank.

    Yes, science is practiced by people who have all manner of “worldviews”, religious and political beliefs and are inescapably products of the cultures into which they were born. What are you saying, that scientific theories are just another kind of narrative no better or worse than the Bible or The Lord Of The Rings? Sounds kind of post-modernist to me.

    The Scot, James Clerk Maxwell, was what we would call today a mathematical physicist. The theory for which he is best known was able to account for electricity, magnetism and light as all manifestations of the same phenomenon, electromagnetic radiation. For anyone who doubts the significance of his work, rest assured that a great deal of the technology we now take for granted would not exist without it.

    He was also a devout Christian, specifically an evangelical Presbyterian. Are you saying that his theory only works because he was a Christian, that if he had been Muslim or Hindu or Sikh or Buddhist it would not? Or are scientific theories descriptions and explanations of the world we observe that are of value, not because of the religious beliefs of their authors, but because they are found, when tested, to correspond to the phenomena they purport to explain?

    The multiverse conjecture may indeed be inspired in part by the atheistic views of some of its promoters but that is irrelevant to whether it corresponds to what we can observe.

  13. 13
    Seversky says:

    As for BA77’s pet obsessions, no, I don’t think of consciousness as an illusion. it seems as real to me as anything can be. What is it, though, how does it arise from the physical brain? I have no idea. All we do observe it that without a physical brain there is no consciousness and that changes to the physical brain can cause changes to the manifested consciousness associated with that brain. The two are clearly connected.

    As for his favorite quantum weirdness, if nothing exists except when we are observing it, does that mean you vanish when I’m not communicating with you through the net? As for consciousness preceding reality, to be conscious means to be conscious of something. If there was nothing before, what was the consciousness being conscious of? As for the quote from Andrew Truscott in the press release, if nothing exists before you try to measure it, what are you trying to measure in the first place?

    Quantum phenomena are weird, no question, but they raise just as many questions as they answer. Quantum weirdness on its own is no more an explanation than emergence.

  14. 14
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Seversky

    Why shouldn’t it happen faster or slower depending on environmental pressures? How does that falsify the basic premise that living things change over time?

    When ‘slower’ includes no significant evolutionary change for 450 million years (horseshoe crabs), then evolution just becomes an ad hoc story which has to claim that the environment, competition, food supply also didn’t change in that amount of time.

    Yes, theories get changed to fit new observations. That’s how it’s supposed to work. It’s a feature not a bug. You’d be the first to complain of scientists stuck to a particular explanation regardless of contradictory data.

    The theory is supposed to predict what new observations will look like and therefore give a coherent explanation of the phenomena. If I had a “Red Bike theory”: “All bicycles are red”. And then noticed a blue bike and then ‘changed it’. “All bicycles are red or blue”. I’d hope, at least I’d change the name to “Red and Blue Bike” theory and also have the courage to say the first one was wrong. Beyond that, I should also have the courage to say that I’ve actually got a new theory because the old one was falsified.

    That’s what we’ve got with evolution. The same name, but lots of ‘changes’. When the theory is chasing after the observations, then it’s not explaining things and it’s not predictive.

    So, if evolution is my Bike theory it is now the “Red or Blue or Green or Black … and any other color we might or might not find Theory”.

    What’s wrong with playing around with conjectures?

    The multiverse equals God for some people.
    Failing to state that it is a conjecture is a form of lying.
    Failing to say that they’re ‘playing around with an imaginary concept’ is equally a form of lying – and manipulation of the public at that.

    There’s a lot wrong with that.

  15. 15
    bornagain77 says:

    as to:

    “What is it, though, how does it arise from the physical brain? I have no idea. All we do observe it that without a physical brain there is no consciousness”

    Near Death Experiences, which we have far more abundant evidence for than we do for Darwinian evolution, testify to the fact that consciousness can exist separately from the material body upon death.

    Near-Death Experiences: Putting a Darwinist’s Evidentiary Standards to the Test – Dr. Michael Egnor – October 15, 2012
    Excerpt: Indeed, about 20 percent of NDE’s are corroborated, which means that there are independent ways of checking about the veracity of the experience. The patients knew of things that they could not have known except by extraordinary perception — such as describing details of surgery that they watched while their heart was stopped, etc. Additionally, many NDE’s have a vividness and a sense of intense reality that one does not generally encounter in dreams or hallucinations.,,,
    The most “parsimonious” explanation — the simplest scientific explanation — is that the (Near Death) experience was real. Tens of millions of people have had such experiences. That is tens of millions of more times than we have observed the origin of species , (or the origin of life, or the origin of a protein/gene, or a molecular machine), which is never.,,,
    The materialist reaction, in short, is unscientific and close-minded. NDE’s show fellows like Coyne at their sneering unscientific irrational worst. Somebody finds a crushed fragment of a fossil and it’s earth-shaking evidence. Tens of million of people have life-changing spiritual experiences and it’s all a big yawn.
    Note: Dr. Egnor is professor and vice-chairman of neurosurgery at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....65301.html

    As to

    “changes to the physical brain can cause changes to the manifested consciousness”

    Yet the Mind is able to modify the brain (brain plasticity). Moreover, Idealism explains all anomalous evidence of personality changes due to brain injury, whereas physicalism/materialism cannot even begin to explain mind.

    The Case for the Soul – InspiringPhilosophy – (4:03 minute mark, Brain Plasticity including Schwartz’s work) – Oct. 2014 – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBsI_ay8K70

    ‘But the hard problem of consciousness is so hard that I can’t even imagine what kind of empirical findings would satisfactorily solve it. In fact, I don’t even know what kind of discovery would get us to first base, not to mention a home run.’
    David Barash – Materialist/Atheist Darwinian Psychologist

    Moreover, completely contrary to reductive materialism, mind can even have pronounced effects on gene expression:

    Scientists Finally Show How Your Thoughts Can Cause Specific Molecular Changes To Your Genes, – December 10, 2013
    Excerpt: “To the best of our knowledge, this is the first paper that shows rapid alterations in gene expression within subjects associated with mindfulness meditation practice,” says study author Richard J. Davidson, founder of the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds and the William James and Vilas Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
    “Most interestingly, the changes were observed in genes that are the current targets of anti-inflammatory and analgesic drugs,” says Perla Kaliman, first author of the article and a researcher at the Institute of Biomedical Research of Barcelona, Spain (IIBB-CSIC-IDIBAPS), where the molecular analyses were conducted.,,,
    the researchers say, there was no difference in the tested genes between the two groups of people at the start of the study. The observed effects were seen only in the meditators following mindfulness practice. In addition, several other DNA-modifying genes showed no differences between groups, suggesting that the mindfulness practice specifically affected certain regulatory pathways.
    http://www.tunedbody.com/scien.....ges-genes/

    as to:

    “if nothing exists except when we are observing it, does that mean you vanish when I’m not communicating with you through the net?”

    No it means material reality does not exist without conscious observation. I never claimed materialism was the base of reality, nor did I ever claim to be a purely material being. That is your materialistic postulation that was falsified not mine!

    For you to refuse to accept the over the top falsification of reductive materialism (120 standard deviations) is just one more evidence as to the dogmatic bias of atheists to adhere to reductive materialism no matter what the empirical evidence says to the contrary!

    “It was not possible to formulate the laws (of quantum theory) in a fully consistent way without reference to consciousness.” Eugene Wigner (1902 -1995) from his collection of essays “Symmetries and Reflections – Scientific Essays”;
    Eugene Wigner laid the foundation for the theory of symmetries in quantum mechanics, for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1963.

    “It will remain remarkable, in whatever way our future concepts may develop, that the very study of the external world led to the scientific conclusion that the content of the consciousness is the ultimate universal reality” –
    Eugene Wigner – (Remarks on the Mind-Body Question, Eugene Wigner, in Wheeler and Zurek, p.169) 1961
    http://www.informationphilosop.....ts/wigner/

    Of supplemental note to the preceding Wigner ‘consciousness’ quotes, it is interesting to note that many of Wigner’s insights have now been experimentally verified and are also now fostering a ‘second’ revolution in quantum mechanics,,,

    Eugene Wigner – A Gedanken Pioneer of the Second Quantum Revolution – Anton Zeilinger – Sept. 2014
    Conclusion
    It would be fascinating to know Eugene Wigner’s reaction to the fact that the gedanken experiments he discussed (in 1963 and 1970) have not only become reality, but building on his gedanken experiments, new ideas have developed which on the one hand probe the foundations of quantum mechanics even deeper, and which on the other hand also provide the foundations to the new field of quantum information technology. All these experiments pay homage to the great insight Wigner expressed in developing these gedanken experiments and in his analyses of the foundations of quantum mechanics,
    http://epjwoc.epj.org/articles....._01010.pdf

    Thus, since Wigner’s insights into the foundational role of the ‘conscious observer’ in Quantum Mechanics are bearing fruit with a ‘Second Quantum Revolution’, then that is certainly very strong evidence that his ‘consciousness’ insights are indeed true.

    Of note: at the 8:30 minute mark of the following video, Schrodinger’s cat and Wigner’s Friend are highlighted:

    Divinely Planted Quantum States – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCTBygadaM4#t=156s

  16. 16
    Dr JDD says:

    Seversky – read that post again in it’s context and you should be able to figure out I was referencing science where world views will influence interpretation. I.e. In origins. Not all science. I am a scientist and I have published a number of peer review articles – I would be rubbishing my own career and it’s work if I was claiming all science couldn’t be trusted.

    However even in my field you see personal bias. Science is not as pure as people like to think but even more so when ones personal beliefs and their whole purpose of and in life has the otential to be challenged by the findings.

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