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Michael Egnor on why we don’t live in a multiverse

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Neurologist Steven Novella and philosopher Philip Goff, both atheists, agree that there are many universes besides the one we live in. Atheists use the multiverse concept to counter the fact that our universe appears fine-tuned to allow life like ours. But is it a valid concept?

Cosmic fine-tuning is the observation that many of the values of the variables in the fundamental laws of physics specifically permit the existence of sentient life (life like us) within a very narrow margin of error. The likelihood of this happening by chance seems vanishingly small. It seems as if Someone expected us

How can we explain this? The fact that God created the universe explains fine-tuning. But for atheists, it’s a real conundrum. As a result, at Neurologica blog, neurologist Steven Novella (pictured) and philosopher Philip Goff have been discussing the most popular atheist explanation for fine-tuning, the “multiverse.” That is, there are countless universes out there, each with its own parameters, and ours just happens to be one that supports our particular type of life…

One cannot infer a “multiverse” from the observation of our universe because inferring “multiple everythings” from “everything” is unintelligible. If Novella and Goff mean that the observation of our universe reveals regions that have different laws of physics, they should say so. Their argument to explain fine-tuning would then be: If the universe had a sufficient number of localities with different laws of physics, apparent fine-tuning in one locality could realistically occur by chance. I think that this is in fact what they are claiming. The problem is, to make their claim credible, they must show that there actually are localities in the universe in which the laws of physics differ in a way that would make fine tuning likely by chance.

Michael Egnor, “We don’t live in a multiverse because the concept makes no sense” at Mind Matters News

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Here is a way we can be sure if we are living in a multiverse: An experiment can test the idea that there is an infinite number of universes. For our experiment, we need a quantum coin flipper, a disintegration gun, and observers who are sure that there is an infinite array of universes out there. (Eric Holloway)


Multiverse physicist Max Tegmark seeks AI that checks news bias. Naive people who truthfully claim to be acting only “for good” in trying to address bias in the news via AI are kidding themselves. Power brokers may push to treat an AI-based fact/bias checker as infallible when it simply reflects the shared philosophical biases of its programmers. (Denyse O’Leary)


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