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Privileged Address: An excerpt from Neil Thomas’s Taking Leave of Darwin

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In Taking Leave of Darwin (2021), longtime rationalist skeptic Neil Thomas observes, regarding Bertrand Russell’s and others’ dismissal of fine-tuning of the universe and Earth for life:

However courageous one may find such sermons, whether from Dawkins or Russell or Nietzsche, they could be said to have acquired a kind of sepia-tinted datedness about them. In the last half century, advances in the world of cosmology have revealed that our planet turns out to be biofriendly to a well-nigh miraculous degree — a verdant oasis fine tuned in a dizzying number of ways for life, in contradistinction to the little less than Hadean depths found in possibly the entire remainder of the observable universe. Through the lens of a celestial telescope, it is true, one can see little but the unfeeling immensity of that unremittingly hostile universe invoked by Russell, but if we look around us here on Earth we can see a planet which seems entirely discontinuous with the rest of the observable cosmos and abounding in a host of benign phenomena so numerous that they tend to go largely unnoticed.

Russell’s assumption of material forces churning away mindlessly over the eons and at length spewing out the unplanned anomaly of human life — “a curious accident in a [cosmic] backwater,” he once termed it — was first formally challenged by astrophysicist Brandon Carter in 1973. Carter put forward what he termed “the anthropic principle” (from the Greek anthropos, man). According to Carter’s detailed calculations, the fact that our planet is habitable, and exists in a universe that could generate and host a habitable planet such as Earth, obtains thanks only to numerous finely tuned conditions, many of them stretching back to the first nanosecond of the Big Bang. Many of the ways that Earth appears fine tuned for life had been noted previously, but Carter made an advance in formalizing planetary and cosmological fine tuning, and he jump-started a wider conversation in the community of physicists, astronomers, and cosmologists about possible explanations for this fine tuning.

Already in the 1960s scientists had begun to notice a strange connection among a number of otherwise unexplained coincidences in physics. It emerged that many of these mysterious values could be explained by one overarching fact: the values had been necessary for the origin and preservation of human and other life. Some of the fundamental constants referred to include the particular strengths of the electromagnetic force and the force of gravity, which appear to be calibrated with extraordinary precision (to a dizzying number of decimal points) for human needs. The Earth, too, caters to human needs in a host of ways unknown to scientists of a century or more ago.

Neil Thomas, “Cosmos, Chaos, and a Privileged Address in the Universe” at Evolution News and Science Today (August 26, 2021)

Most efforts to dismiss the significance of fine-tuning seem like special pleading. We don’t know why but we do know what — and why it matters.


You may also wish to read: New class of “Hycean” exoplanets may feature life. The new James Webb Telescope will enable much clearer resolution for the composition believed necessary for hosting life. Exoplanets that have been overlooked because they are un-Earthlike may feature oceans that extremophiles could live in, Cambridge astronomers say.

21 Replies to “Privileged Address: An excerpt from Neil Thomas’s Taking Leave of Darwin

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    First it worth complimenting Neil Thomas on his writing style. Reading his article was very much like listening to someone who is very talented on playing the guitar. it was very pleasing to read Neil Thomas’s wording and phrasing with which he chose to express himself. His pleasing writing style, combined with his depth, and wide ranging, knowledge on the subject, is a fairly rare thing to find in science writing now-a-days. With most science writers today tending towards being fairly dry and boring in their writing style., (myself included in so far as I can even be considered a science writer)

    But as pleasing as Thomas’s writing style is, and as wide ranging as Neil Thomas’s knowledge is, one ‘non-trivial’ fact seems to have escaped Neil Thomas’s notice.

    In his excerpt Neil Thomas states that,

    “It was then for good reason that Carter concluded that our place in the cosmos, while not at the center of the universe as had been supposed prior to Copernicus, was at the very least “privileged.”,,,
    Arguably, these factors even go some way toward relativizing that purported demotion of humankind brought about by the so-called Copernican Revolution,,,,

    But advances in science have not only “relativized” the Copernican principle to make it effectively useless as a heuristic, i.e. guiding principle, in science, but have now also overturned it and shown that it is a false assumption.

    Primarily, the Copernican principle (and/or the Principle of Mediocrity), erroneously holds that “humans (the Earth, or the Solar system) are not privileged observers of the universe.”

    Copernican principle
    Excerpt: In physical cosmology, the Copernican principle, is an alternative name of the mediocrity principle,,, stating that humans (the Earth, or the Solar system) are not privileged observers of the universe.[1]
    Named for Copernican heliocentrism, it is a working assumption that arises from a modified cosmological extension of Copernicus’s argument of a moving Earth.[2] In some sense, it is equivalent to the mediocrity principle.
    – per wikipedia

    Carl Sagan coined the term ‘principle of mediocrity’ to refer to the idea that scientists should assume that nothing is special about humanity’s situation
    https://books.google.com/books?id=rR5BCwAAQBAJ&pg=PA187#v=onepage&q&f=false

    Mediocrity principle
    Excerpt: The (Mediocrity) principle has been taken to suggest that there is nothing very unusual about the evolution of the Solar System, Earth’s history, the evolution of biological complexity, human evolution, or any one nation. It is a heuristic in the vein of the Copernican principle, and is sometimes used as a philosophical statement about the place of humanity. The idea is to assume mediocrity, rather than starting with the assumption that a phenomenon is special, privileged, exceptional, or even superior.[2][3]
    – per wikipedia

    And yet, despite the fact that virtually everyone, including the vast majority of Christians today, presently hold that the Copernican Principle is unquestionably true, (and therefore concede the necessary premise of the Principle of Mediocrity to atheists), the fact of the matter is that the Copernican Principal is now shown, via our most powerful theories in science, to be a false assumption.

    In establishing this fact, first it is important to realize that Copernicus never actually did experimentally prove that the geocentric model was an incorrect description of the universe, and that his heliocentric model of the universe was a ‘more accurate’ description of the universe.

    The Tyranny of Simple Explanations – Philip Ball – AUG 11, 2016
    Excerpt: Take the debate between the ancient geocentric view of the universe—in which the sun and planets move around a central Earth—and Nicolaus Copernicus’s heliocentric theory, with the Sun at the center and the Earth and other planets moving around it.,,,
    It is often claimed that, by the 16th century, this Ptolemaic model of the universe had become so laden with these epicycles that it was on the point of falling apart. Then along came the Polish astronomer with his heliocentric universe, and no more epicycles were needed. The two theories explained the same astronomical observations, but Copernicus’s was simpler, and so Occam’s razor tells us to prefer it.
    This is wrong for many reasons. First, Copernicus didn’t do away with epicycles.,,,
    In an introductory tract called the Commentariolus, published around 1514, he said he could explain the motions of the heavens with “just” 34 epicycles. Many later commentators took this to mean that the geocentric model must have needed many more than 34, but there’s no actual evidence for that. And the historian of astronomy Owen Gingerich has dismissed the common assumption that the Ptolemaic model was so epicycle-heavy that it was close to collapse. He argues that a relatively simple design was probably still in use in Copernicus’s time.,,,
    http://www.theatlantic.com/sci.....or/495332/

    Simply put, just because the earth is not to be considered central in the solar system itself, that does not automatically mean that the Earth cannot be considered central in the universe as a whole. The sun itself, contrary to what Nicolaus Copernicus held to be true in his heliocentric model, is certainly not to be considered central in the universe.

    Nicolaus Copernicus (1473–1543) was a mathematician and astronomer who proposed that the sun was stationary in the center of the universe and the earth revolved around it.
    https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/copernicus/

    Shoot, the sun itself is not even to be considered the ‘true center’ of the solar system, (much less is it to be considered the ‘true center’ of our galaxy, and even much less than that is it to be considered the ‘true center’ of the universe as a whole).

    Scientists Have Pinpointed the True Center of the Solar System –
    It’s not where you think. – BY Caroline Delbert – JUL 2, 2020
    *Researchers are using a new software model to pinpoint the true center of the solar system.
    * Massive, bossy Jupiter pulls the center slightly out of true with its gravity field.
    * The true center is just outside of the sun’s surface, depending on where Jupiter is.
    Excerpt: Even without third-generation GPS technology, scientists have pinpointed the center of our solar system. Yes, we revolve around the sun, but it’s not as simple as the center of the sun. Instead, the shape and interacting gravities in the solar system place the center just outside the sun’s surface.
    https://www.popularmechanics.com/science/a33073525/where-is-center-solar-system/

    General Relativity itself, one of the powerful theories ever in the history of science, makes this point clear.

    As the late Stephen Hawking himself explained, ‘our observations of the heavens can be explained by assuming either the earth or the sun to be at rest.,,, the real advantage of the Copernican system is simply that the equations of motion are much simpler in the frame of reference in which the sun is at rest.’

    “So which is real, the Ptolemaic or Copernican system? Although it is not uncommon for people to say that Copernicus proved Ptolemy wrong, that is not true. As in the case of our normal view versus that of the goldfish, one can use either picture as a model of the universe, for our observations of the heavens can be explained by assuming either the earth or the sun to be at rest.
    Despite its role in philosophical debates over the nature of our universe, the real advantage of the Copernican system is simply that the equations of motion are much simpler in the frame of reference in which the sun is at rest.”
    Stephen Hawking – The Grand Design – pages 39 – 2010

    And as George Ellis, (a former close colleague of Hawking), stated, “I can construct you a spherically symmetrical universe with Earth at its center, and you cannot disprove it based on observations… You can only exclude it on philosophical grounds…”

    “People need to be aware that there is a range of models that could explain the observations… For instance, I can construct you a spherically symmetrical universe with Earth at its center, and you cannot disprove it based on observations… You can only exclude it on philosophical grounds… What I want to bring into the open is the fact that we are using philosophical criteria in choosing our models. A lot of cosmology tries to hide that.”
    – George Ellis – W. Wayt Gibbs, “Profile: George F. R. Ellis,” Scientific American, October 1995, Vol. 273, No.4, p. 55

    And as Fred Hoyle, who discovered stellar nucleosynthesis, himself stated, “Today we cannot say that the Copernican theory is ‘right’ and the Ptolemaic theory ‘wrong’ in any meaningful physical sense.”

    “The relation of the two pictures [geocentrism and geokineticism] is reduced to a mere coordinate transformation and it is the main tenet of the Einstein theory that any two ways of looking at the world which are related to each other by a coordinate transformation are entirely equivalent from a physical point of view…. Today we cannot say that the Copernican theory is ‘right’ and the Ptolemaic theory ‘wrong’ in any meaningful physical sense.”
    – Hoyle, Fred. Nicolaus Copernicus. London: Heinemann Educational Books Ltd., 1973.

    And even as the man himself, Albert Einstein, stated, The two sentences: “the sun is at rest and the earth moves” or “the sun moves and the earth is at rest” would simply mean two different conventions concerning two different CS [coordinate systems].”

    “Can we formulate physical laws so that they are valid for all CS [coordinate systems], not only those moving uniformly, but also those moving quite arbitrarily, relative to each other? […] The struggle, so violent in the early days of science, between the views of Ptolemy and Copernicus would then be quite meaningless. Either CS could be used with equal justification. The two sentences: “the sun is at rest and the earth moves” or “the sun moves and the earth is at rest” would simply mean two different conventions concerning two different CS.”
    – Einstein, A. and Infeld, L. (1938) The Evolution of Physics, p.212 (p.248 in original 1938 ed.);

    There simply is no empirical reason to prefer the sun, nor any other place in the universe, as being central in the universe over and above the earth being considered central in the universe, in any model that we may choose to make for the universe.

    As Einstein himself noted,

    “One need not view the existence of such centrifugal forces as originating from the motion of K’ [the Earth]; one could just as well account for them as resulting from the average rotational effect of distant, detectable masses as evidenced in the vicinity of K’ [the Earth], whereby K’ [the Earth] is treated as being at rest.”
    –Albert Einstein, quoted in Hans Thirring, “On the Effect of Distant Rotating Masses in Einstein’s Theory of Gravitation”, Physikalische Zeitschrift 22, 29, 1921

    “If one rotates the shell *relative to the fixed stars* about an axis going through its center, a Coriolis force arises in the interior of the shell, *that is, the plane of a Foucault pendulum is dragged around*”
    –Albert Einstein, cited in “Gravitation”, Misner Thorne and Wheeler pp. 544-545.

    “We can’t feel our motion through space, nor has any physical experiment ever proved that the Earth actually is in motion.,,,
    If all the objects in space were removed save one, then no one could say whether that one remaining object was at rest or hurtling through the void at 100,000 miles per second”
    Historian Lincoln Barnett – “The Universe and Dr. Einstein” – pg 73 (contains a foreword by Albert Einstein)

    In fact, as far as empirical science itself is concerned, in the 4 dimensional spacetime of Einstein’s General Relativity, we find that each 3-Dimensional point in the universe is central to the expansion of the universe,,,

    Where is the centre of the universe?:
    Excerpt: There is no centre of the universe! According to the standard theories of cosmology, the universe started with a “Big Bang” about 14 thousand million years ago and has been expanding ever since. Yet there is no centre to the expansion; it is the same everywhere. The Big Bang should not be visualized as an ordinary explosion. The universe is not expanding out from a centre into space; rather, the whole universe is expanding and it is doing so equally at all places, as far as we can tell.
    http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/.....entre.html

    ,,, and since any 3-Dimensional point can be considered central in the expanding 4-Dimensional space time of General Relativity, then, as the following articles make clear, it is now left completely open to whomever is making a model of the universe to decide for themselves what is to be considered central in the universe,,,

    How Einstein Revealed the Universe’s Strange “Nonlocality” – George Musser | Oct 20, 2015
    Excerpt: Under most circumstances, we can ignore this nonlocality. You can designate some available chunk of matter as a reference point and use it to anchor a coordinate grid. You can, to the chagrin of Santa Barbarans, take Los Angeles as the center of the universe and define every other place with respect to it. In this framework, you can go about your business in blissful ignorance of space’s fundamental inability to demarcate locations.,,
    In short, Einstein’s theory is nonlocal in a more subtle and insidious way than Newton’s theory of gravity was. Newtonian gravity acted at a distance, but at least it operated within a framework of absolute space. Einsteinian gravity has no such element of wizardry; its effects ripple through the universe at the speed of light. Yet it demolishes the framework, violating locality in what was, for Einstein, its most basic sense: the stipulation that all things have a location. General relativity confounds our intuitive picture of space as a kind of container in which material objects reside and forces us to search for an entirely new conception of place.
    http://www.scientificamerican......locality//

    How Einstein Lost His Bearings, and With Them, General Relativity – March 2018
    Excerpt: Einstein’s field equations — the equations of general relativity — describe how the shape of space-time evolves in response to the presence of matter and energy. To describe that evolution, you need to impose on space-time a coordinate system — like lines of latitude and longitude — that tells you which points are where.
    The most important thing to recognize about coordinate systems is that they’re human contrivances. Maybe in one coordinate system we label a point (0, 0, 0), and in another we label that same point (1, 1, 1). The physical properties haven’t changed — we’ve just tagged the point differently. “Those labels are something about us, not something about the world,” said James Weatherall, a philosopher of science at the University of California, Irvine.,,,
    The Einstein field equations we have today are generally covariant. They express the same physical truths about the universe — how space-time curves in the presence of energy and matter — regardless of what coordinates you use to label things.,,,
    as Einstein discovered,,, the universe doesn’t admit any one privileged choice of coordinates.
    https://www.quantamagazine.org/how-einstein-lost-his-bearings-and-with-them-general-relativity-20180314/

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    In fact, according to the four-dimensional space-time of General Relativity, even individual people can be considered central in the universe,,,

    You Technically Are the Center of the Universe – May 2016
    Excerpt: (due to the 1 in 10^120 finely tuned expansion of the 4-D space-time of General Relativity) no matter where you stand, it will appear that everything in the universe is expanding around you. So the center of the universe is technically — everywhere.
    The moment you pick a frame of reference, that point becomes the center of the universe.
    Here’s another way to think about it: The sphere of space we can see around us is the visible universe. We’re looking at the light from stars that’s traveled millions or billions of years to reach us. When we reach the 13.8 billion-light-year point, we’re seeing the universe just moments after the Big Bang happened.
    But someone standing on another planet, a few light-years to the right, would see a different sphere of the universe. It’s sort of like lighting a match in the middle of a dark room: Your observable universe is the sphere of the room that the light illuminates.
    But someone standing in a different spot in the room will be able to see a different sphere. So technically, we are all standing at the center of our own observable universes.
    https://mic.com/articles/144214/you-technically-are-the-center-of-the-universe-thanks-to-a-wacky-physics-quirk

    And to support the claim that even individual people can be considered central in the four-dimensional space-time of General Relativity, I note the often overlooked fact that when Einstein first formulated both Special and General relativity, he gave a ‘hypothetical’ observer a privileged frame of reference in which to make measurements in the universe.

    Introduction to special relativity
    Excerpt: Einstein’s approach was based on thought experiments, calculations, and the principle of relativity, which is the notion that all physical laws should appear the same (that is, take the same basic form) to all inertial observers.,,,
    Each observer has a distinct “frame of reference” in which velocities are measured,,,,
    per wikipedia

    The happiest thought of my life.
    Excerpt: In 1920 Einstein commented that a thought came into his mind when writing the above-mentioned paper he called it “the happiest thought of my life”:
    “The gravitational field has only a relative existence… Because for an observer freely falling from the roof of a house – at least in his immediate surroundings – there exists no gravitational field.”
    http://physics.ucr.edu/~wudka/.....ode85.html

    We will get back to observers being central in the universe in a little bit, but before we do that, and to more firmly establish that the earth, (and solar system itself) should be given a ‘privileged’ position in the universe, it is first necessary to point out that anomalies in the Cosmic Background Radiation (CBR), (anomalies that were recently discovered by the WMAP and Planck telescopes), ‘strangely’ line up with the earth and solar system,

    Here is an excellent clip from “The Principle” that explains these ‘anomalies’ in the CMBR, that ‘unexpectedly’ line up with the earth and solar system, in an easy to understand manner.

    Cosmic Microwave Background Proves Intelligent Design (disproves Copernican principle) (clip of “The Principle”) – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htV8WTyo4rw

    Moreover, as the following paper highlights, we find that Radio Astronomy now reveals a surprising rotational coincidence for Earth in relation to the quasar and radio galaxy distributions in the universe, “implying an apparent breakdown of the Copernican principle or its more generalization, cosmological principle, upon which the standard cosmological model is based upon”,,,

    A large anisotropy in the sky distribution of 3CRR quasars and other radio galaxies
    – Ashok K. Singal
    Astrophysics and Space Science volume 357, Article number: 152 (2015)
    Abstract
    We report the presence of large anisotropies in the sky distributions of powerful extended quasars as well as some other sub-classes of radio galaxies in the 3CRR survey, the most reliable and most intensively studied complete sample of strong steep-spectrum radio sources. The anisotropies lie about a plane passing through the equinoxes and the north celestial pole. Out of a total of 48 quasars in the sample, 33 of them lie in one half of the observed sky and the remaining 15 in the other half. The probability that in a random distribution of 3CRR quasars in the sky, statistical fluctuations could give rise to an asymmetry in observed numbers up to this level is only ?1 %. Also only about 1/4th of Fanaroff-Riley 1 (FR1) type of radio galaxies lie in the first half of the observed sky and the remainder in the second half. If we include all the observed asymmetries in the sky distributions of quasars and radio galaxies in the 3CRR sample, the probability of their occurrence by a chance combination reduces to ?2×10?5. Two pertinent but disturbing questions that could be raised here are—firstly why should there be such large anisotropies present in the sky distribution of some of the strongest and most distant discrete sources, implying inhomogeneities in the universe at very large scales (covering a fraction of the universe)? Secondly why should such anisotropies lie about a great circle decided purely by the orientation of earth’s rotation axis and/or the axis of its revolution around the sun? It seems yet more curious when we consider the other anisotropies, e.g., an alignment of the four normals to the quadrupole and octopole planes in the CMBR with the cosmological dipole and the equinoxes. Then there is the other recently reported large dipole anisotropy in the NVSS radio source distribution differing in magnitude from the CMBR dipole by a factor of four, and therefore not explained as due to the peculiar motion of the Solar system, yet aligned with the CMBR dipole which itself lies close to the line joining the equinoxes. Are these alignments a mere coincidence or do they imply that these axes have a preferential placement in the larger scheme of things, implying an apparent breakdown of the Copernican principle or its more generalization, cosmological principle, upon which the standard cosmological model is based upon?
    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10509-015-2388-2

    And it is these large scale structures of the universe, combined on top of the CMBR anomalies, which, amazingly, overturn the Copernican principle and strongly support the ‘medieval’ belief that the earth should be considered to have a ‘central’ position in the universe.

    As the following article, (with a illustration) explains,

    “Of course to have an exact position, (or what we would call an ‘exact center’ in the universe), we would need an X axis, a Y axis, and a Z axis, since that will give us three dimensions in Euclidean space. The CMB dipole and quadrupole gives us the X axis and Y axis but not a Z axis. Hence, the X and Y axis of the CMB provide a direction, but only an approximate position. That is why we have continually said that the CMB puts Earth “at or near the center of the universe.”
    For the Z-axis we depend on other information, such as quasars and galaxy alignment that the CMB cannot provide. For example, it has been discovered that the anisotropies of extended quasars and radio galaxies are aligned with the Earth’s equator and the North celestial pole (NCP)4.,,, Ashok K. Singal describes his shocking discovery in those terms:
    “What is intriguing even further is why such anisotropies should lie about a great circle decided purely by the orientation of earth’s rotation axis and/or the axis of its revolution around the sun? It looks as if these axes have a preferential placement in the larger scheme of things, implying an apparent breakdown of the Copernican principle or its more generalization, cosmological principle, upon which all modern cosmological theories are based upon.”
    – Ashok K. Singal4 “Is there a violation of the Copernican principle in radio sky,” Ashok K. Singal, Astronomy and Astrophysics Division, Navrangpura, Ahmedabad, India, May 17, 2103,..
    Signal states: “We can rule out at a 99.995% confidence level the hypothesis that these asymmetries are merely due to statistical fluctuations.”
    – illustration
    https://i.postimg.cc/L8G3CbXN/DOUBLE-AXIS.png
    – article
    http://www.robertsungenis.com/.....20Wars.pdf

    Moreover, due to the ‘insane coincidence’ of the flatness of the universe being fine-tuned to within one part to the 10^57, we find that “These tiny temperature variations (in the CMBR) correspond to the largest scale structures of the observable universe.”

    How do we know the universe is flat? Discovering the topology of the universe – by Fraser Cain – June 7, 2017
    Excerpt: With the most sensitive space-based telescopes they have available, astronomers are able to detect tiny variations in the temperature of this background radiation.
    And here’s the part that blows my mind every time I think about it. These tiny temperature variations correspond to the largest scale structures of the observable universe. A region that was a fraction of a degree warmer become a vast galaxy cluster, hundreds of millions of light-years across.
    The cosmic microwave background radiation just gives and gives, and when it comes to figuring out the topology of the universe, it has the answer we need. If the universe was curved in any way, these temperature variations would appear distorted compared to the actual size that we see these structures today.
    But they’re not. To best of its ability, ESA’s Planck space telescope, can’t detect any distortion at all. The universe is flat.,,,
    Since the universe is flat now, it must have been flat in the past, when the universe was an incredibly dense singularity. And for it to maintain this level of flatness over 13.8 billion years of expansion, in kind of amazing.
    In fact, astronomers estimate that the universe must have been flat to 1 part within 1×10^57 parts.
    Which seems like an insane coincidence.
    https://phys.org/news/2017-06-universe-flat-topology.html

    Thus, (besides the CMBR and the large scale structure of the universe combining to give the earth an ‘surprising’ centrality in the universe, (and due to the ‘insane coincidence’ of the flatness of the universe being fine-tuned to within one part to the 10^57 over the entire history of the universe), our best evidence from cosmology now reveals teleology, (i.e. a goal directed purpose, a plan), that specifically included the earth from the beginning of creation. The earth, from what our best science can now tell us, is not some random cosmic fluctuation as atheists have erroneously presumed within their ‘rapid inflation’ models.

    Genesis 1:1
    In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

    Job 38:4-5
    Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding. Who fixed its measurements? Surely you know! Or who stretched a measuring line across it?

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    On top of all that, and the further support the claim that ‘the universe had humans in mind all along’, in the following paper, Robin Collins found that photons coming from the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation (CMBR) are ‘such as to maximize the intensity of the CMB as observed by typical observers.’

    The Fine-Tuning for Discoverability – Robin Collins – March 22, 2014
    Excerpt: Predictive and Explanatory Power of Discoverability – Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation
    ,,, The most dramatic confirmation of the discoverability/livability optimality thesis (DLO) is the dependence of the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation (CMB) on the baryon to photon ratio.,,,
    ,,, The only livability effect this ratio has is on whether or not galaxies can form that have near – optimally livability zones. As long as this condition is met, the value of this ratio has no further effects on livability. Hence, the DLO predicts that within this range, the value of this ratio will be such as to maximize the intensity of the CMB as observed by typical observers.
    According to my calculations – which have been verified by three other physicists — to within the margin of error of the experimentally determined parameters (~20%), the value of the photon to baryon ratio is such that it maximizes the CMB. This is shown in Figure 1 below. (pg. 13)
    This is a case of a teleological thesis serving both a predictive and an ultimate explanatory role.,,,
    http://home.messiah.edu/~rcoll.....osting.pdf

    Of related interest to that fact, we also find that we just so happen to also, “Live At The Right Time In Cosmic History to be able to observe the Cosmic Background Radiation”

    We Live At The Right Time In Cosmic History to be able to observe the Cosmic Background Radiation – Hugh Ross – video (7:12 minute mark)
    https://youtu.be/MxOGeqVOsvc?t=431

    And to further solidify the fact that humans have far more significance in this universe than atheists have falsely presupposed, (with their erroneous presumption of the Copernican principle), in the following video physicist Neil Turok states that “So we can go from 10 to the plus 25 to 10 to the minus 35. Now where are we? Well the size of a living cell is about 10 to the minus 5. Which is halfway between the two. In mathematical terms, we say it is the geometric mean. We live in the middle between the largest scale in physics,,, and the tiniest scale [in physics].”

    “So we can go from 10 to the plus 25 to 10 to the minus 35. Now where are we? Well the size of a living cell is about 10 to the minus 5. Which is halfway between the two. In mathematical terms, we say it is the geometric mean. We live in the middle between the largest scale in physics,,, and the tiniest scale [in physics].”
    – Neil Turok as quoted at the 14:40 minute mark
    The Astonishing Simplicity of Everything – Neil Turok Public Lecture – video (12:00 minute mark, we live in the geometric mean, i.e. the middle, of the universe)
    https://youtu.be/f1x9lgX8GaE?t=715

    The following interactive graph, gives very similar ‘rough ballpark’ figures, of 10 ^27 and 10-35, to Dr. Turok’s figures.

    The Scale of the Universe
    https://htwins.net/scale2/

    And while that finding by Dr. Neil Turok is certainly very interesting, that finding is a bit disappointing in that is just gives life in general a ‘middle’ position in the universe, and still does not give humanity in particular, a ‘middle’ position in the universe.

    Yet, Dr. William Demski, (and company), in the following graph, have refined that estimate of a ‘geometric mean’ with better data, and have given us a more precise figure of 8.8 x 10^26 M for the observable universe’s diameter, and 1.6 x 10^-35 for the Planck length which is the smallest length possible.

    Magnifying the Universe
    https://academicinfluence.com/ie/mtu/

    And that more precise figure for a ‘geometric mean’ does indeed give humanity in particular a ‘central’ position in the universe.

    Dr. Dembski’s more precise interactive graph points out that the smallest scale visible to the human eye (as well as the size of a human egg) is at 10^-4 meters, which ‘just so happens’ to be directly in the exponential center, and/or geometric mean, of all possible sizes of our physical reality. This is very interesting for the limits to human vision (as well as the size of the human egg) could have, theoretically, been at very different positions rather than directly in the exponential middle and/or the geometric mean. Needless to say, this empirical finding directly challenges, if not directly refutes, the assumption behind the Copernican Principle and/or the Principle of Mediocrity.

    Now let’s get back to observers themselves being central in the universe.

    Whereas Einstein, when he first formulated both Special and General Relativity, gave a ‘hypothetical’ observer a privileged frame of reference in which to make measurements in the universe, In Quantum Mechanics we find that it is the measurement itself that gives each observer a privileged frame of reference in the universe.

    As the following article states, “It proves that measurement is everything. At the quantum level, reality does not exist if you are not looking at it,”,,,

    Experiment confirms quantum theory weirdness – May 27, 2015
    Excerpt: Common sense says the object is either wave-like or particle-like, independent of how we measure it. But quantum physics predicts that whether you observe wave like behavior (interference) or particle behavior (no interference) depends only on how it is actually measured at the end of its journey. This is exactly what the ANU team found.
    “It proves that measurement is everything. At the quantum level, reality does not exist if you are not looking at it,” said Associate Professor Andrew Truscott from the ANU Research School of Physics and Engineering.
    http://phys.org/news/2015-05-q.....dness.html

    Likewise, the following violation of Leggett’s inequality stressed ‘the quantum-mechanical assertion that reality does not exist when we’re not observing it.’

    Quantum physics says goodbye to reality – Apr 20, 2007
    Excerpt: 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

  4. 4
    bornagain77 says:

    Moreover, this recent experimental confirmation of the “Wigner’s Friend” thought experiment established that “measurement results,, must be understood relative to the observer who performed the measurement”.

    More Than One Reality Exists (in Quantum Physics) By Mindy Weisberger – March 20, 2019
    Excerpt: “measurement results,, must be understood relative to the observer who performed the measurement”.
    https://www.livescience.com/65029-dueling-reality-photons.html

    Experimental test of local observer-independence – 2019
    Excerpt: ,,, If one holds fast to the assumptions of locality and free-choice, this result implies that quantum theory should be interpreted in an observer-dependent way.
    https://arxiv.org/pdf/1902.05080.pdf

    Quantum paradox points to shaky foundations of reality – George Musser – Aug. 17, 2020
    Excerpt: Now, researchers in Australia and Taiwan offer perhaps the sharpest demonstration that Wigner’s paradox is real. In a study published this week in Nature Physics, they transform the thought experiment into a mathematical theorem that confirms the irreconcilable contradiction at the heart of the scenario. The team also tests the theorem with an experiment, using photons as proxies for the humans. Whereas Wigner believed resolving the paradox requires quantum mechanics to break down for large systems such as human observers, some of the new study’s authors believe something just as fundamental is on thin ice: objectivity. It could mean there is no such thing as an absolute fact, one that is as true for me as it is for you.
    https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/08/quantum-paradox-points-shaky-foundations-reality

    Because of such consistent and repeatable experiments like the preceding from quantum mechanics, Richard Conn Henry, who is Professor of Physics at John Hopkins University, stated “It is more than 80 years since the discovery of quantum mechanics gave us the most fundamental insight ever into our nature: the overturning of the Copernican Revolution, and the restoration of us human beings to centrality in the Universe.”

    “It is more than 80 years since the discovery of quantum mechanics gave us the most fundamental insight ever into our nature: the overturning of the Copernican Revolution, and the restoration of us human beings to centrality in the Universe.
    And yet, have you ever before read a sentence having meaning similar to that of my preceding sentence? Likely you have not, and the reason you have not is, in my opinion, that physicists are in a state of denial, and have fears and agonies that are very similar to the fears and agonies that Copernicus and Galileo went through with their perturbations of society.”
    Richard Conn Henry – Professor of Physics – John Hopkins University
    http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/quantum.enigma.html

    On top of all that, and completely contrary to the Copernican Principle and/or the Principle of Mediocrity, in quantum mechanics we also find that humans, (via their free will), are brought into the laws of nature at the most fundamental level.

    As the late Steven Weinberg, who was an atheist himself, stated in the following article, “In the instrumentalist approach (in quantum mechanics) humans are brought into the laws of nature at the most fundamental level.,,, the instrumentalist approach turns its back on a vision that became possible after Darwin, of a world governed by impersonal physical laws that control human behavior along with everything else.,,, In quantum mechanics these probabilities do not exist until people choose what to measure,,, Unlike the case of classical physics, a choice must be made,,,”

    The Trouble with Quantum Mechanics – Steven Weinberg – January 19, 2017
    Excerpt: The instrumentalist approach,, (the) wave function,, is merely an instrument that provides predictions of the probabilities of various outcomes when measurements are made.,,
    In the instrumentalist approach,,, humans are brought into the laws of nature at the most fundamental level. According to Eugene Wigner, a pioneer of quantum mechanics, “it was not possible to formulate the laws of quantum mechanics in a fully consistent way without reference to the consciousness.”11
    Thus the instrumentalist approach turns its back on a vision that became possible after Darwin, of a world governed by impersonal physical laws that control human behavior along with everything else. It is not that we object to thinking about humans. Rather, we want to understand the relation of humans to nature, not just assuming the character of this relation by incorporating it in what we suppose are nature’s fundamental laws, but rather by deduction from laws that make no explicit reference to humans. We may in the end have to give up this goal,,,
    Some physicists who adopt an instrumentalist approach argue that the probabilities we infer from the wave function are objective probabilities, independent of whether humans are making a measurement. I don’t find this tenable. In quantum mechanics these probabilities do not exist until people choose what to measure, such as the spin in one or another direction. Unlike the case of classical physics, a choice must be made,,,
    http://quantum.phys.unm.edu/46.....inberg.pdf

    In fact Weinberg, again an atheist, rejected the instrumentalist approach precisely because “humans are brought into the laws of nature at the most fundamental level” and because it undermined the Darwinian worldview from within.

    In fact Weinberg, who was an atheist, rejected the instrumentalist approach precisely because “humans are brought into the laws of nature at the most fundamental level” and because it undermined the Darwinian worldview from within.

    Yet, regardless of how Weinberg and other atheists may prefer the world to behave, quantum mechanics itself could care less how atheists prefer the world to behave.

    As leading experimentalist Anton Zeilinger states in the following video, “what we perceive as reality now depends on our earlier decision what to measure. Which is a very, very, deep message about the nature of reality and our part in the whole universe. We are not just passive observers.”

    “The Kochen-Speckter Theorem talks about properties of one system only. So we know that we cannot assume – to put it precisely, we know that it is wrong to assume that the features of a system, which we observe in a measurement exist prior to measurement. Not always. I mean in a certain cases. So in a sense, what we perceive as reality now depends on our earlier decision what to measure. Which is a very, very, deep message about the nature of reality and our part in the whole universe. We are not just passive observers.”
    Anton Zeilinger –
    Quantum Physics Debunks Materialism – video (7:17 minute mark)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=4C5pq7W5yRM#t=437

    As well, although there have been several major loopholes in quantum mechanics over the past several decades that atheists have tried to appeal to in order to try to avoid the ‘spooky’ Theistic implications of quantum mechanics, over the past several years each of those major loopholes have each been closed one by one. The last major loophole that was left to be closed was the “setting independence” and/or the ‘free-will’ loophole:

    Closing the ‘free will’ loophole: Using distant quasars to test Bell’s theorem – February 20, 2014
    Excerpt: Though two major loopholes have since been closed, a third remains; physicists refer to it as “setting independence,” or more provocatively, “free will.” This loophole proposes that a particle detector’s settings may “conspire” with events in the shared causal past of the detectors themselves to determine which properties of the particle to measure — a scenario that, however far-fetched, implies that a physicist running the experiment does not have complete free will in choosing each detector’s setting. Such a scenario would result in biased measurements, suggesting that two particles are correlated more than they actually are, and giving more weight to quantum mechanics than classical physics.
    “It sounds creepy, but people realized that’s a logical possibility that hasn’t been closed yet,” says MIT’s David Kaiser, the Germeshausen Professor of the History of Science and senior lecturer in the Department of Physics. “Before we make the leap to say the equations of quantum theory tell us the world is inescapably crazy and bizarre, have we closed every conceivable logical loophole, even if they may not seem plausible in the world we know today”
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140220112515.htm

  5. 5
    bornagain77 says:

    And now Anton Zeilinger and company have recently, as of 2018, pushed the ‘free will loophole’ back to 7.8 billion years ago, thereby firmly establishing the ‘common sense’ fact that the free will choices of the experimenter in the quantum experiments are truly free and are not determined by any possible causal influences from the past for at least the last 7.8 billion years, and that experimenters themselves are therefore shown to be truly free to choose whatever measurement settings in the experiments that he or she may so desire to choose so as to ‘logically’ probe whatever aspect of reality that he or she may be interested in probing.

    Cosmic Bell Test Using Random Measurement Settings from High-Redshift Quasars – Anton Zeilinger – 14 June 2018
    Abstract: This experiment pushes back to at least 7.8 Gyr ago the most recent time by which any local-realist influences could have exploited the “freedom-of-choice” loophole to engineer the observed Bell violation, excluding any such mechanism from 96% of the space-time volume of the past light cone of our experiment, extending from the big bang to today.
    https://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.080403

    Thus regardless of how the late Steven Weinberg, and other atheists, may have preferred the universe to behave, with the closing of the last remaining ‘freedom of choice’ loophole in quantum mechanics, it is now empirically demonstrated that “humans are indeed brought into the laws of nature at the most fundamental level”, and thus these recent findings from quantum mechanics directly undermine, as Weinberg himself stated, the “vision that became possible after Darwin, of a world governed by impersonal physical laws that control human behavior along with everything else.”

    As well, to state the glaringly obvious, this is yet another VERY powerful line of empirical evidence that directly falsifies the Copernican Principle and/or the Principle of Mediocrity.

    In other words, since humans themselves are brought into the laws of physics at their most fundamental level, then humans are therefore, obviously, empirically shown to have far, far, more significance, value, and dignity in this universe than atheists have presumed.

    As much as it may hurt an atheists’s feelings to know this, and as far as our best science can now tell us, we are not merely “chemical scum” as Hawking, via the Copernican Principle, tried to imply that we were.

    “The human race is just a chemical scum on a moderate-sized planet, orbiting around a very average star in the outer suburb of one among a hundred billion galaxies. We are so insignificant that I can’t believe the whole universe exists for our benefit.,,,”
    – Stephen Hawking – 1995 TV show, Reality on the Rocks: Beyond Our Ken,

    Hopefully atheists will soon get over the sad fact that they are not merely chemical scum in short order. 🙂

    One final note, although, as has been shown in this post, both General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics have combined, (in a rather dramatic fashion), to overturn the Copernican Principle, and to return humanity back to centrality in the universe, never-the-less, General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics still simply refuse, mathematically, to be combined into a single overarching ‘theory of everything.

    Quantum Leaps – Jeremy Bernstein – October 19, 2018
    Excerpt: Divergent series notwithstanding, quantum electrodynamics yielded results of remarkable accuracy. Consider the magnetic moment of the electron. This calculation, which has been calculated up to the fifth order in ?, agrees with experiment to ten parts in a billion. If one continued the calculation to higher and higher orders, at some point the series would begin to break down. There is no sign of that as yet. Why not carry out a similar program for gravitation? One can readily write down the Feynman graphs that represent the terms in the expansion. Yet there remains an irremediable difficulty. Every order reveals new types of infinities, and no finite number of renormalizations renders all the terms in the series finite.
    The theory is not renormalizable.
    https://inference-review.com/article/quantum-leaps
    Jeremy Bernstein is professor emeritus of physics at the Stevens Institute of Technology.

    Why Gravity Is Not Like the Other Forces
    We asked four physicists why gravity stands out among the forces of nature. We got four different answers.
    Excerpt: the quantum version of Einstein’s general relativity is “nonrenormalizable.”,,,
    In quantum theories, infinite terms appear when you try to calculate how very energetic particles scatter off each other and interact. In theories that are renormalizable — which include the theories describing all the forces of nature other than gravity — we can remove these infinities in a rigorous way by appropriately adding other quantities that effectively cancel them, so-called counterterms. This renormalization process leads to physically sensible answers that agree with experiments to a very high degree of accuracy.
    The problem with a quantum version of general relativity is that the calculations that would describe interactions of very energetic gravitons — the quantized units of gravity — would have infinitely many infinite terms. You would need to add infinitely many counterterms in a never-ending process. Renormalization would fail.,,,
    Sera Cremonini – theoretical physicist – Lehigh University
    https://www.quantamagazine.org/why-gravity-is-not-like-the-other-forces-20200615/

    And yet, when we rightly allow the Agent causality of God ‘back’ into physics, as the Christian founders of modern science originally envisioned,,,, (Isaac Newton, Michael Faraday, James Clerk Maxwell, and Max Planck, to name a few of the Christian founders),,, and as quantum mechanics itself now empirically demands (with the closing of the free will loophole by Anton Zeilinger and company), then rightly allowing the Agent causality of God ‘back’ into physics provides us with a very plausible resolution for the much sought after ‘theory of everything’ in that Christ’s resurrection from the dead provides an empirically backed reconciliation, (via the Shroud of Turin), between quantum mechanics and general relativity into the much sought after ‘Theory of Everything”.

    Here is a recent video where I make precisely that case

    Jesus Christ as the correct “Theory of Everything” – video
    https://youtu.be/Vpn2Vu8–eE

    And here are a few relevant notes from studies on the Shroud of Turin showing that both gravity and quantum mechanics were dealt with in Christ’s resurrection from the dead.

    In the following video, Isabel Piczek, (a particle physicist who made a sculpture from the Shroud image), states,,, ‘The muscles of the body are absolutely not crushed against the stone of the tomb. They are perfect. It means the body is hovering between the two sides of the shroud. What does that mean? It means there is absolutely no gravity.’

    “When you look at the image of the shroud, the two bodies next to each other, you feel that it is a flat image. But if you create, for instance, a three dimensional object, as I did, the real body, then you realize that there is a strange dividing element. An interface from which the image is projected up and the image is projected down. The muscles of the body are absolutely not crushed against the stone of the tomb. They are perfect. It means the body is hovering between the two sides of the shroud. What does that mean? It means there is absolutely no gravity. Other strange you discover is that the image is absolutely undistorted. Now if you imagine the clothe was wrinkled, tied, wrapped around the body, and all of the sudden you see a perfect image, which is impossible unless the shroud was made absolutely taut, rigidly taut.”
    Isabel Piczek –
    Turin shroud – (Particle Physicist explains the ‘event horizon’ on the Shroud of Turin) – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=27Ru3_TWuiY

    Kevin Moran, an optical engineer, describes the Shroud Image in this way, “The unique front-and-back only image can be best described as gravitationally collimated. The radiation that made the image acted perfectly parallel to gravity. There is no side image. The radiation is parallel to gravity,,,”

    Optically Terminated Image Pixels Observed on Frei 1978 Samples – Kevin E. Moran – 1999
    Discussion
    Pia’s negative photograph, from 1898, showed what looked to be a body that was glowing, but slightly submerged in a bath of cloudy water. This condition is more properly described as an image that is visible, at a distance, but by locally attenuated radiation. The unique front-and-back only image can be best described as gravitationally collimated. The radiation that made the image acted perfectly parallel to gravity. There is no side image. The radiation is parallel to gravity and, if moving at light speed, only lasted about 100 picoseconds. It is particulate in nature, colliding only with some of the fibers. It is not a continuum or spherical-front radiation that made the image, as visible or UV light. It is not the X-ray radiation that obeys the one over R squared law that we are so accustomed to in medicine. It is more unique,,,
    Theoretical model
    It is suggested that the image was formed when a high-energy particle struck the fiber and released radiation within the fiber at a speed greater that the local speed of light. Since the fiber acts as a light pipe, this energy moved out through the fiber until it encountered an optical discontinuity, then it slowed to the local speed of light and dispersed.
    Discussion
    The fact that the pixels don’t fluoresce suggests that the conversion to their now brittle dehydrated state occurred instantly and completely so no partial products remain to be activated by the ultraviolet light. This suggests a quantum event where a finite amount of energy transferred abruptly. The fact that there are images front and back suggests the radiating particles were released along the gravity vector. The radiation pressure may also help explain why the blood was “lifted cleanly” from the body as it transformed to a resurrected state.”
    https://www.shroud.com/pdfs/moran.pdf

    Moreover, besides gravity being dealt with on the Shroud of Turin, the Shroud also gives us evidence that Quantum Mechanics itself was dealt with. In the following paper, it was found that it was not possible to describe the image formation on the Shroud in classical terms but they found it necessary to describe the formation of the image on the Shroud in discrete quantum terms.

    The absorbed energy in the Shroud body image formation appears as contributed by discrete (quantum) values – Giovanni Fazio, Giuseppe Mandaglio – 2008
    Excerpt: This result means that the optical density distribution,, can not be attributed at the absorbed energy described in the framework of the classical physics model. It is, in fact, necessary to hypothesize a absorption by discrete values of the energy where the ‘quantum’ is equal to the one necessary to yellow one fibril.
    http://cab.unime.it/mus/541/1/c1a0802004.pdf

    Moreover, the following rather astonishing study on the Shroud, found that it would take 34 Trillion Watts of what is termed VUV (directional) radiation to form the image on the shroud.

    Astonishing discovery at Christ’s tomb supports Turin Shroud – NOV 26TH 2016
    Excerpt: The first attempts made to reproduce the face on the Shroud by radiation, used a CO2 laser which produced an image on a linen fabric that is similar at a macroscopic level. However, microscopic analysis showed a coloring that is too deep and many charred linen threads, features that are incompatible with the Shroud image. Instead, the results of ENEA “show that a short and intense burst of VUV directional radiation can color a linen cloth so as to reproduce many of the peculiar characteristics of the body image on the Shroud of Turin, including shades of color, the surface color of the fibrils of the outer linen fabric, and the absence of fluorescence”.
    ‘However, Enea scientists warn, “it should be noted that the total power of VUV radiations required to instantly color the surface of linen that corresponds to a human of average height, body surface area equal to = 2000 MW/cm2 17000 cm2 = 34 thousand billion watts makes it impractical today to reproduce the entire Shroud image using a single laser excimer, since this power cannot be produced by any VUV light source built to date (the most powerful available on the market come only to several billion watts)”.
    Comment
    The ENEA study of the Holy Shroud of Turin concluded that it would take 34 Thousand Billion (trillion) Watts of VUV radiation to make the image on the shroud. This output of electromagnetic energy remains beyond human technology.
    http://www.predatormastersforu.....er=3014106

    So thus in conclusion, when we rightly allow the Agent Causality of God back into physics then a very plausible solution to the number one unsolved mystery in science today, (of finding a bridge for the ‘infinite mathematical divide’ that exists between General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics), readily pops out for us in that, as the Shroud of Turin gives witness to, both Gravity and Quantum Mechanics were dealt with in Christ’s resurrection from the dead.

    As William Dembski noted, (although he was not directly addressing the ‘infinite mathematical divide’ that exists between General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics), “The Cross is a path of humility in which the infinite God becomes finite and then contracts to zero, only to resurrect and thereby unite a finite humanity within a newfound infinity.”

    The End Of Christianity – Finding a Good God in an Evil World – Pg.31 – William Dembski
    Excerpt: “In mathematics there are two ways to go to infinity. One is to grow large without measure. The other is to form a fraction in which the denominator goes to zero. The Cross is a path of humility in which the infinite God becomes finite and then contracts to zero, only to resurrect and thereby unite a finite humanity within a newfound infinity.”
    – per the design inference

    I firmly believe that the Christian founders of modern science, (who very much viewed their practice of science as a way of worshiping God), would all be very pleased to learn that Christ’s resurrection from the dead provides us with a very plausible solution to the number one unsolved mystery in modern science today, i.e. the solution to the quote unquote ‘theory of everything’.

    Colossians 1:15-20
    The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

  6. 6
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/1

    Primarily, the Copernican principle (and/or the Principle of Mediocrity), erroneously holds that “humans (the Earth, or the Solar system) are not privileged observers of the universe.”

    That’s right. It’s only human hubris that insists that the world revolves around us.

    And yet, despite the fact that virtually everyone, including the vast majority of Christians today, presently hold that the Copernican Principle is unquestionably true, (and therefore concede the necessary premise of the Principle of Mediocrity to atheists), the fact of the matter is that the Copernican Principal is now shown, via our most powerful theories in science, to be a false assumption.

    No, it hasn’t.

    Simply put, just because the earth is not to be considered central in the solar system itself, that does not automatically mean that the Earth cannot be considered central in the universe as a whole. The sun itself, contrary to what Nicolaus Copernicus held to be true in his heliocentric model, is certainly not to be considered central in the universe

    The Earth is just one of many bodies that comprise our Solar System. If our Sun is not central in the Universe then neither are we.

    There simply is no empirical reason to prefer the sun, nor any other place in the universe, as being central in the universe over and above the earth being considered central in the universe, in any model that we may choose to make for the universe.

    In other words, the Copernican Principle stands.

    Thank you.

  7. 7
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/2

    In fact, according to the four-dimensional space-time of General Relativity, even individual people can be considered central in the universe,,,

    There are currently around 7.9 billion people on Earth. Does this mean the Universe has 7.9 billion centers?

  8. 8
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/4

    As the following article states, “It proves that measurement is everything. At the quantum level, reality does not exist if you are not looking at it,”,,,

    If nothing exists until we look at it then what are we looking at in the first place?

  9. 9
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, given that you just denied what I claimed without providing any scientific evidence for your counterclaims, I’ll let the scientific facts that I laid out stand on their own merit in regards to validating my claims.

  10. 10
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/5

    In the following video, Isabel Piczek, (a particle physicist who made a sculpture from the Shroud image), states,,, ‘The muscles of the body are absolutely not crushed against the stone of the tomb. They are perfect. It means the body is hovering between the two sides of the shroud. What does that mean? It means there is absolutely no gravity.’

    I wanted to ask you about Isabel Piczek. I see her referred to frequently in literature surrounding the Shroud as a particle or quantum or some other sort of physicist.

    Yet, such biographical information as I can find indicates she was born and raised in Hungary and received training in the fine arts. She and her sister fled to the West to escape the communist takeover of their country and she built a distinguished career here as an ecclesiastical artist here.

    But I can find no evidence that she ever trained as, conducted research as or published as a physicist of any sort. If anyone has any information about her scientific career perhaps they could point us to it.

  11. 11
    Seversky says:

    Bornagain77/5

    So thus in conclusion, when we rightly allow the Agent Causality of God back into physics then a very plausible solution to the number one unsolved mystery in science today, (of finding a bridge for the ‘infinite mathematical divide’ that exists between General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics), readily pops out for us in that, as the Shroud of Turin gives witness to, both Gravity and Quantum Mechanics were dealt with in Christ’s resurrection from the dead.

    The “Agent Causality of God” is not excluded for some arbitrary reason, it is because there is no plausible reason to include it. It explains nothing in the scientific sense.

    When you ask science for an explanation of the origins of life on Earth, you are asking biologists, chemists and physicist for a detailed, step-by-step naturalistic account of the processes by which life emerged from inanimate chemicals and diversified into the incredible complexity and variety of living things we see around us now.

    How does “Agent Causality of God” tell us anything about that? The answer is, it doesn’t. It suggests who did it. It tells us nothing about how. Neither you nor any of your fellow-believers have any idea about how and are apparently not really curious about it either.

    So perhaps you or William Dembski could tell us of what use the “Agent Causality of God” is to science?

  12. 12
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky denies the importance of the agent causality God in scientific explanation. But alas, Seversky, since he denies his own free will, denies that he himself is a causal agent.

    But if Seversky is not a causal agent, who, or what, in blue blazes wrote Seversky post denying the importance of the agent causality of God? 🙂

    Oh well, so much for Seversky ability to judge what is important in science and what is not.

    Epistemology — how we know — and ontology — what exists — are both affected by methodological naturalism. If we say, “We cannot know that a mind caused x,” laying down an epistemological boundary defined by MN, then our ontology comprising real causes for x won’t include minds.
    MN entails an ontology in which minds are the consequence of physics, and thus, can only be placeholders for a more detailed causal account in which physics is the only (ultimate) actor. You didn’t write your email to me. Physics did, and informed you of that event after the fact.
    “That’s crazy,” you reply, “I certainly did write my email.” Okay, then — to what does the pronoun “I” in that sentence refer?
    Your personal agency; your mind. Are you supernatural? Who knows?,,,
    You are certainly an intelligent cause, however, and your intelligence does not collapse into physics. (If it does collapse — i.e., can be reduced without explanatory loss — we haven’t the faintest idea how, which amounts to the same thing.) To explain the effects you bring about in the world — such as your email, a real pattern — we must refer to you as a unique agent.
    – Paul Nelson
    https://evolutionnews.org/2014/09/do_you_like_set/

  13. 13
    ET says:

    seversky:

    The “Agent Causality of God” is not excluded for some arbitrary reason, it is because there is no plausible reason to include it. It explains nothing in the scientific sense.

    Total ignorant nonsense. There is plenty of evidence to include it. Our very existence demands it. There isn’t any evidence that blind and mindless processes did it. There isn’t even a way to test that claim.

    When you ask science for an explanation of the origins of life on Earth, you are asking biologists, chemists and physicist for a detailed, step-by-step naturalistic account of the processes by which life emerged from inanimate chemicals and diversified into the incredible complexity and variety of living things we see around us now.

    Wrong. Those scientists claim to have such a mechanism. It is up to them to demonstrate it or shut up. We only ask they they support their nonsense.

    How does “Agent Causality of God” tell us anything about that? The answer is, it doesn’t. It suggests who did it. It tells us nothing about how. Neither you nor any of your fellow-believers have any idea about how and are apparently not really curious about it either.

    Clearly seversky has never conducted an investigation. Saying something was intelligently designed tells us quite a bit. For one it eliminates blind and mindless processes as the cause. For another it adds intent and purpose.

    The science of ID is in the detection and study of intelligent designs in nature. We don’t even ask about the who or how until AFTER intelligent design has been detected. And seeing that such a thing is WAY above our comprehension and understanding, we focus on what we can. And that is understanding how it works.

    However, if nature produced life then those scientists seversky mentioned should be able to replicate it. They know all of the chemicals involved. Yet they can’t do it.

  14. 14
    Querius says:

    When you ask science for an explanation of the origins of life on Earth, you are asking biologists, chemists and physicist for a detailed, step-by-step naturalistic account of the processes by which life emerged from inanimate chemicals and diversified into the incredible complexity and variety of living things we see around us now.

    Yes and you get science fantasy stories what mighta/musta happened that sound a lot like magic.

    So what do scientists attribute the causal appearance of space-time? The multiverse?

    Ah, the Multiverse! The atheist’s thumb-suck that’s eternal, all powerful, undetectable, untestable, multidimensional, timeless, omnipresent, and prime mover of all universes with all the advantages of God without the pesky notion of personal responsibility!

    -Q

  15. 15
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Seversky

    When you ask science for an explanation of the origins of life on Earth, you are asking biologists, chemists and physicist for a detailed, step-by-step naturalistic account of the processes by which life emerged from inanimate chemicals and diversified into the incredible complexity and variety of living things we see around us now.

    First of all, we want an explanation of the origins of life on Earth. We don’t “ask science”. Obviously, the researchers studying this don’t just ask science to give them answers. They look at the evidence and draw conclusions. The question is a search for explanatory causes. You’re claiming that the only path to true understanding this issue is through material causes – so you eliminate the possibility that God is the agent cause. But for what reason or evidence do you limit the possibility of an answer to materialism?

    The “Agent Causality of God” is not excluded for some arbitrary reason, it is because there is no plausible reason to include it. It explains nothing in the scientific sense.

    It does explain quite a lot if it eliminates a false-lead in the search for an answer. Eliminating material causes contributes an immense amount to science – preventing scientists from wasting, time, money and their skills on something that has been falsified. Alchemists tried to turn lead into gold – but that idea was falsified. Should we keep trying the experiments anyway?

    How does “Agent Causality of God” tell us anything about that? The answer is, it doesn’t. It suggests who did it. It tells us nothing about how. Neither you nor any of your fellow-believers have any idea about how and are apparently not really curious about it either.

    As above, it tells us a lot about how because we eliminate one big possibility and therefore know it was not through a blind, material process. That information adds a lot to the research.
    Strangely, you seem to be saying that even if Agent Causality of God was the true cause, we should pursue unintelligent materialist causes anyway.

  16. 16
    chuckdarwin says:

    #13: ET
    “Saying something was intelligently designed tells us quite a bit. For one it eliminates blind and mindless processes as the cause. For another it adds intent and purpose.”

    I’m curious (and have never had this question adequately answered beyond catechismal bromides) that if ID informs us as to “intent and purpose,” what exactly is/was the intelligent designer’s intent and purpose in designing and creating humans? Let’s set aside the how for now and simply focus on the “Agent Causality of God’s” intent and purpose.

  17. 17
    Querius says:

    Chuckdarwin @16,

    But that’s precisely the point if ID, namely the presumption of intelligent design without any position on the designer, the designer’s goals, or the designer’s motivation.

    This presumption has repeatedly been shown to be more beneficial to scientific advancement than the presumption of random junk, some of which might happen to be useful.

    Hope this makes it clear.

    -Q

  18. 18
    Silver Asiatic says:

    CD

    Just following a good point by Querius @ 17 …

    To say that something was done “by design” means it was done for an intent and purpose.
    The materialist claim is that everything emerged from blind purposeless causes with no intent for anything. So when we say that something was intelligently designed, we indicate that purpose and intent were present.

    You’re going farther than ID science can go when you ask about what the intention of the designer was in creating human beings. It’s a philosophical thing we can infer – looking at the existence of rational beings who have inbuilt capabilities and instinct towards the moral good, truth and beauty. But that goes beyond ID detection as a scientific project. You also have to learn about the nature of God, as you understand that concept, etc.

  19. 19
    Querius says:

    Here’s what Kirk Durston thinks about “functional information” in biology:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_j0E995D2s

    If you’re interested, his education and peer-reviewed articles are listed here:
    https://www.kirkdurston.com/kirk

    -Q

  20. 20
    ET says:

    chuck:

    I’m curious (and have never had this question adequately answered beyond catechismal bromides) that if ID informs us as to “intent and purpose,” what exactly is/was the intelligent designer’s intent and purpose in designing and creating humans?

    For starters, according to “the Privileged Planet” this universe was intelligently designed for scientific discovery. Humans are intelligent agencies capable of such a thing. A universe designed for scientific discovery requires explorers capable of figuring out what they observe.

    Beyond that we have to figure it out. Would an intelligent designer take the effort to produce life, give it the just-so habitable planet and fine tuning, for no reason? Really?

  21. 21
    Silver Asiatic says:

    And also from Privileged Planet, the earth is in the perfect position to observe and discover the universe so the creation of human beings with that capability means that discovery and learning and gaining knowledge are part of the purpose. Humans enjoy learning and growing in understanding – so the purpose is a good one. The greatness of the universe is surpassed by the greatness of the designer who made it – so learning that is what humans are intended to do.

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