Free Republic
Browse · Search
Bloggers & Personal
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

String Theory Skeptics and Multiverse Mania
Not Even Wrong ^ | 02/21/2012 | Peter Woit

Posted on 02/23/2012 7:32:29 PM PST by SeekAndFind

My endless rants here about the hot field of multiverse studies are mainly motivated by concern about the effect this is having on particle theory. Multiverse scenarios all too often function as an excuse for not admitting that string theory/extra-dimensional ideas about unification have failed. Such an admission would encourage people to move on to more promising ideas, but instead hep-th is stuck in an endless doldrums with the high profile public face of the subject dominated by excited claims about what a wonderful discovery this region is.

Independently of the string theory problem, I’m personally a skeptic that multiverse studies have any promise, simply due to the fact that the subject lacks a viable theory, any experimental evidence, and any plausible prospects for getting either. Others feel differently though, and very recently two of my fellow string theory skeptics have written about the subject much more positively.

The first is Lee Smolin, who has written an essay for the Foundations of Physics “Forty Years of String Theory” volume with the title A perspective on the landscape problem. Smolin’s interest in multiverse models goes way back, to long before the current string-theory-based mania. He’s got a good argument that he was the originator of the term “landscape” itself, which he wrote about back in his 1997 book The Life of the Cosmos. If you’re interested in the multiverse at all, Smolin’s article is well-worth reading. I very much agree with his emphasis on the principle that one has to be careful to stick to ideas that can legitimately count as science, by conventional standards of testability. He is pursuing “cosmological natural selection” scenarios which he argues do have testable consequences. I’m not convinced there’s enough there to ever lead to solid evidence for such a scenario, although there may be enough structure there to sooner or later make it clear if the idea is simply falsified by one fact or other about the universe.

Today’s New York Times has an article by Dennis Overbye about Lawrence Krauss and his new book A Universe From Nothing. Much of the book is an excellent discussion of cosmology and the physics of the vacuum, but it also devotes a lot of effort to discussing the meaningless question of “Why is there something rather than nothing?” and arguing against the invocation of a deity in order to answer it. Krauss is no fan of string theory, which he regards as overhyped, but he seems to have developed an attraction to multiverse studies recently, perhaps motivated by their use in arguments with those who see the Big Bang as a place for God to hang out.

Personally I’ve no interest in arguments about the existence of God, which epitomize to me an empty waste of time. Given the real dangers of religious fundamentalism in the US though, I’m glad that others like Krauss make the effort to answer some of these arguments. I’m less happy to see him and others adopting the multiverse as their weapon of choice in this battle, since it’s a lousy one and not going to convince anyone. In the New York Times piece we’re told:

“Maybe in the true eternal multiverse there are truly no laws,” Dr. Krauss said in an e-mail. “Maybe indeed randomness is all there is and everything that can happen happens somewhere.”

Given the choice between this vision of fundamental science and “God did it” as explanations for the nature of the universe, one can’t be surprised if people go for the man in the white robes…



Peter Woit is Senior Lecturer in the Mathematics department at Columbia University, where teaches, does research, and is responsible for the department Computer system. For the past couple years, he has also been Calculus Director, coordinating Calculus teaching and implementing our use of the WebAssign online homework system in some of the Calculus classes.

His academic background includes undergraduate and master's degrees in physics from Harvard, a Ph.D. in particle theory from Princeton, and postdocs in physics (ITP Stony Brook) and mathematics (MSRI Berkeley). He has been at Columbia since 1989, starting as Ritt assistant professor.


TOPICS: Astronomy; Religion; Science
KEYWORDS: creation; evolution; multiverse; stringtheory
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-78 next last

1 posted on 02/23/2012 7:32:31 PM PST by SeekAndFind
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
Sir Issac Newton was both the father of modern physics and the best theologian in England.

" Gravity explains the motions of the planets, but it cannot explain who set the planets in motion. God governs all things and knows all that is or can be done."
2 posted on 02/23/2012 7:36:44 PM PST by U-238
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: U-238

RE: God governs all things and knows all that is or can be done.

This statement disqualifies Sir Newton from teaching science in our schools.


3 posted on 02/23/2012 7:37:58 PM PST by SeekAndFind
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

Not to many people know who Sir Issac Newton to begin with.


4 posted on 02/23/2012 7:39:18 PM PST by U-238
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: U-238

Didn’t he grow apples or something?


5 posted on 02/23/2012 7:42:07 PM PST by EEGator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
Kind of a long winded explanation of a current problem in math. It seems that you can use math to describe things that are simply not possible in this universe.

In fact, you can go through every detail of string theory, or the multiverse theory, and use it to say just about anything you might imagine one way or the other ~ without limit.

Some have put a cap of how many multiverse situations can really occur but I've seen folks use other math to simply demolish a cap.

So, what is going on? My personal theory is very simple ~ that in this universe at least you cannot predict the future. You can certainly project trends but you cannot predict!

The evidence for that arises out of the discovery that given a whole bunch of waves in the ocean there's a probability (may be vanishingly small) that a larger wave exists in their midst, and that maybe an even larger wave than that.

Before the discovery of real rogue waves the math used to describe fluid dynamics failed to predict the existence of such waves. Now that we know they exist we can actually describe them and their behavior quite well ~ even determine the probabilities of a wave of this, that orthe other size just popping up ~ but we cannot predict that with certainty.

Quantum tunneling depends on similar processes ~ some wave forms (electrons or protons perhaps) occurring in higher energy levels than we can predict with certainty, but occurring in any case.

It's like uncertainty prohibits us looking into the future.

6 posted on 02/23/2012 7:47:16 PM PST by muawiyah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
The fool hath said in his heart, "There is no God." The fool hath said in his heart, "There is a God."

7 posted on 02/23/2012 7:47:28 PM PST by I see my hands (It's time to.. KICK OUT THE JAMS, MOTHER FREEPERS!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: EEGator
Didn’t he grow apples or something?

Good heavens, no! He grew figs. Surely you've heard of the (wait for it)...fig newton?

8 posted on 02/23/2012 7:52:23 PM PST by Billthedrill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

String theory and multiverse theories are BS of the worst sort, motivated by a recognition of the mathematical odds against evolution in the one universe which we actually live in and know anything about.


9 posted on 02/23/2012 7:54:04 PM PST by varmintman
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
All the planets are puppets controlled by strings.

All the male inhabitants on the Blue Planet are controlled by string bikinis that control the purse strings and leave the males on a shoestring.

It`s all one big happy web.

10 posted on 02/23/2012 7:54:36 PM PST by bunkerhill7 (Strings on planet G????-?- Who knew?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

Could you either refer to it as “string hypothesis”, or tell us what repeatable experiment demonstrates the the truth of the hypothesis?


11 posted on 02/23/2012 7:55:40 PM PST by DesertRhino (I was standing with a rifle, waiting for soviet paratroopers, but communists just ran for office)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: U-238

Bump! thanks for posting!


12 posted on 02/23/2012 7:58:34 PM PST by LittleBillyInfidel (This tagline has been formatted to fit the screen. Some content has been edited.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Billthedrill

Oh man...that was bad!


13 posted on 02/23/2012 8:03:28 PM PST by EEGator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

but, you know, the New York Times...sigh. They have a book list...


14 posted on 02/23/2012 8:03:48 PM PST by Beowulf9
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

“Consider the enormousness of the problem : Science has proved that the universe exploded into being at a certain moment. It asks: ‘What cause produced this effect? Who or what put the matter or energy into the universe?’ And science cannot answer these questions.”

“For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountain of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”

Robert Jastrow


15 posted on 02/23/2012 8:04:39 PM PST by garjog
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: EEGator
Ah, thankyouthankyouthankyou!

It was Rocky & Bullwinkle who did that to me. Society is to blame.

16 posted on 02/23/2012 8:07:05 PM PST by Billthedrill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: varmintman

String theory came about by accident when two physicists accidentally discovered that an obscure eighteenth century mathematical expression called the Euler Beta function unexpectedly described quantum behavior. There was no anti-relgious motivation involved at all.


17 posted on 02/23/2012 8:07:57 PM PST by demas415
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

The problem with string theory, is that instead of noticing that the math no longer describes reality,, we are assured that the math is correct, and that there are magic invisible universes and worlds.

Which is more plausible,, the lunacy of string theory, taken as a representation of reality?? Or that the math somewhere took a turn off the path of truth?

It’s happened before,,so many deep errors in describing reality had entire bodies of “proof”.


18 posted on 02/23/2012 8:08:13 PM PST by DesertRhino (I was standing with a rifle, waiting for soviet paratroopers, but communists just ran for office)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: varmintman

Point to ponder...

The other day someone posted an interactive site zooming from the smallest parts of what we believe exists, through the mwasureable, up to the spherical ball that consists of the believed universe...

It went like this...

Bits of point matter
Empty space
Bigger bits
Empty space
repeated a few times
Then...

Bits of matter (quarks and such
Empty space
Atoms - Bits of matter orbited by other bits of matter
Empty space
Bigger ones
Empty space
repeated a few times
Then...
Things we can see with microscopes
Things in the world
The World
The Sun
solar system (Matter with things orbiting around it)
Empty space
Other solar systems (Matter with things orbiting around it)
Empty space
Our galaxy (central core with things orbiting around it)
Empty space
Galactic clusters (central core with things orbiting around it)

ETC

Zoomed out far enough, our universe appears to be a point of matter.

So considering the repeating process above, The fact that we could be one ‘molecule’, our universe could be one molecule in a much larger ‘thing’, with uncounted others, does not strike me as far fetched.

Anyone thinking that in a couple hundred years of actual hard science, that we have done anything but scratch the surface of what ‘is’ in ‘reality’ is pretty arrogant or deluding themselves. One of the two.


19 posted on 02/23/2012 8:11:30 PM PST by Norm Lenhart (Normie: Wandering Druid, Cult of Palin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: Norm Lenhart

It is anomalous to replace the four-dimensional continuum by a five-dimensional one and then subsequently to tie up artificially one of those five dimensions in order to account for the fact that it does not manifest itself. –Einstein to Paul Ehrenfest

String theorists don’t make predictions, they make excuses. –Feynman, Noble Laureate

String theory is like a 50 year old woman wearing too much lipstick. –Laughlin, Nobel Laureate

“It is tragic, but now, we have the string theorists, thousands of them, that also dream of explaining all the features of nature. They just celebrated the 20th anniversary of superstring theory. So when one person spends 30 years, it’s a waste, but when thousands waste 20 years in modern day, they celebrate with champagne. I find that curious.” Sheldon Glashow, Nobel Laureate

I don’t like that they’re not calculating anything. I don’t like that they don’t check their ideas. I don’t like that for anything that disagrees with a n experiment, they cook up an explanation—a fix-up to say, “Well, it might be true.” For example, the theory requires ten dimensions. Well, maybe there’s a way of wrapping up six of the dimensions. Yes, that’s all possible mathematically, but why not seven? When they write their equation, the equation should decide how many of these things get wrapped up, not the desire to agree with experiment. In other words, there’s no reason whatsoever in superstring theory that it isn’t eight out of the ten dimensions that get wrapped up and that the result is only two dimensions, which would be completely in disagreement with experience. So the fact that it might disagree with experience is very tenuous, it doesn’t produce anything; it has to be excused most of the time. It doesn’t look right. –Richard Feynman, Nobel Laureate in Physics


20 posted on 02/23/2012 8:15:49 PM PST by DesertRhino (I was standing with a rifle, waiting for soviet paratroopers, but communists just ran for office)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: DesertRhino

Hey, maybe they are right. But again, there is a whole “universe” of questions out there that the greatest of human minds has yet to even realize exists, much less have solid answers to them.

That’s all I’m really saying. String or Brane or any mumber of ‘quantum gravity’ unification theories are a hell of a long way from provable. And when they are, who is to say there won’t be some other force never imagined to throw the whole thing into chaos. Much like the wave/particle thing did not do long ago.


21 posted on 02/23/2012 8:22:36 PM PST by Norm Lenhart (Normie: Wandering Druid, Cult of Palin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: Norm Lenhart

“too” long ago.


22 posted on 02/23/2012 8:24:06 PM PST by Norm Lenhart (Normie: Wandering Druid, Cult of Palin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: muawiyah

“It seems that you can use math to describe things that are simply not possible in this universe.”

And you can use natural language to describe things that are not possible....


23 posted on 02/23/2012 8:26:14 PM PST by achilles2000 ("I'll agree to save the whales as long as we can deport the liberals")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: DesertRhino

Why should it be surprising that math can describe things that don’t or even can’t exist? We can do that with words. What is amazing is that math can be used to describe things that do exist, whether they are near or very, very far.


24 posted on 02/23/2012 8:29:42 PM PST by achilles2000 ("I'll agree to save the whales as long as we can deport the liberals")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: Norm Lenhart

“Anyone thinking that in a couple hundred years of actual hard science, that we have done anything but scratch the surface of what ‘is’ in ‘reality’ is pretty arrogant or deluding themselves.”
***************************************************
Ah ha! So that’s what Bill Clinton was trying to get at when he said “it depends upon what the meaning of is is”!


25 posted on 02/23/2012 8:32:43 PM PST by House Atreides
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: House Atreides

I probably shouldn’t have let that out, huh?

;)


26 posted on 02/23/2012 8:34:13 PM PST by Norm Lenhart (Normie: Wandering Druid, Cult of Palin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
Given the real dangers of religious fundamentalism in the US though...

And there we have it, the political motive for "Science" as a religion. But there is no conflict between "truths," and science as a method for discovery of facts becomes ludicrous without an underlying belief that truth is waiting to be discovered. As such, Science is a belief system when it is taken beyond a very limited scope as a method of investigation.

A religion, I might add, in conflict with a whole plethora of other religions in the world, though Christianity is not among them. The prevailing belief in nature as a creation of nature's God, the belief that truth was "there" to be discovered because it was created by the Christian God who equated Himself with "truth," was necessary for the modern scientific method to develop.

One of these days these humanists and atheists will get the status as a religion some of their more foolish believers claim to want. As it is, this "religion of non-religion" nonsense is getting a little stale.

When you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.

27 posted on 02/23/2012 8:42:24 PM PST by Prospero
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind; SunkenCiv

28 posted on 02/23/2012 8:44:42 PM PST by Beowulf
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Norm Lenhart
That’s all I’m really saying. String or Brane or any mumber of ‘quantum gravity’ unification theories are a hell of a long way from provable. And when they are, who is to say there won’t be some other force never imagined to throw the whole thing into chaos.

A some point a wall will be reached that we will never be able to see through.
The best we’ll be able to do is theorize and maybe predict what should be on the other side, but never directly prove without question.
May have reached the wall already with some things and have a way to go with others, but the wall is there.
We ain’t ever going to know everything there is to know about our reality, both macroscopic and microscopic.

29 posted on 02/23/2012 8:45:20 PM PST by The Cajun (Palin, Free Republic, Mark Levin, Newt......Nuff said.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind
Today’s New York Times has an article by Dennis Overbye about Lawrence Krauss and his new book A Universe From Nothing. Much of the book is an excellent discussion of cosmology and the physics of the vacuum, but it also devotes a lot of effort to discussing the meaningless question of “Why is there something rather than nothing?” and arguing against the invocation of a deity in order to answer it.

Funny how Krauss and others will equate the vacuum with "nothing" when they want to claim there is no God, but then claim that the vacuum is "something" when they want to explain the mass of the proton, the mass of empty space, or the flatness of the Universe.

30 posted on 02/23/2012 8:51:35 PM PST by Moonman62 (The US has become a government with a country, rather than a country with a government.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: bunkerhill7

“All the planets are puppets controlled by strings.”

No, they are suspended from thin rods projecting from the big yellow one in the center. I learned this in school!


31 posted on 02/23/2012 9:01:35 PM PST by The Antiyuppie ("When small men cast long shadows, then it is very late in the day.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

The String theorist suffer from the same mistakes the global warming lunatics, asteroid killed the Dinos, Dark Matter, Dark energy scientist make in that they rely on computer models instead of real observations.

Like with Dark matter, “Oh our computer models show the universe should have more mass, our models can’t be wrong therefore 90% of it must be invisible!!!”

Same with string theory. Our computer models can’t be wrong so there must be 10 invisible dimensions!!


32 posted on 02/23/2012 9:11:43 PM PST by qam1 (There's been a huge party. All plates and the bottles are empty, all that's left is the bill to pay)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: EEGator

Newton was sitting under an apple tree, an apple fell on his head, and he suddenly thought of the Universal Law of Gravitation.The apple is accelerated, since its velocity changes from zero as it is hanging on the tree and moves toward the ground. Thus, by Newton’s 2nd Law there must be a force that acts on the apple to cause this acceleration. Let’s call this force “gravity”, and the associated acceleration the “accleration due to gravity”. Now came Newton’s truly brilliant insight: if the force of gravity reaches to the top of the highest tree, might it not reach even further; in particular, might it not reach all the way to the orbit of the Moon! Then, the orbit of the Moon about the Earth could be a consequence of the gravitational force, because the acceleration due to gravity could change the velocity of the Moon in just such a way that it followed an orbit around the earth.


33 posted on 02/23/2012 9:15:14 PM PST by U-238
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: EEGator

If you ask the average high school student today, they would probably think Issac Newton was part of some English rock band.


34 posted on 02/23/2012 9:17:43 PM PST by U-238
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

“. . . it also devotes a lot of effort to discussing the meaningless question of “Why is there something rather than nothing?”

I don’t understand why this is a meaningless question. If we knew the answer to it, I suspect everything else would follow.


35 posted on 02/23/2012 9:23:48 PM PST by ModelBreaker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: The Cajun

“A some point a wall will be reached that we will never be able to see through.”

Godel’s theorem suggests your wall may move. It’s just that to move it, we have to accept additional facts as axiomatic. It also suggests that there is no point at which the wall will stop moving outward because there are always properties of a complex system that cannot be established from existing axioms.


36 posted on 02/23/2012 9:32:18 PM PST by ModelBreaker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: onedoug

Ping


37 posted on 02/23/2012 9:39:04 PM PST by windcliff
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: U-238

a band that only sold 10000 cds, but every buyer started a band.


38 posted on 02/23/2012 10:08:00 PM PST by RitchieAprile
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: ModelBreaker
Axiomatic, evident without proof, by definition of the word, when talking about theories concerning the complex nature of our reality, isn't seeing through the wall or moving it.
It's an educated, well studied guess about what's on the other side, but not proof.

There are limits on what we will ever know macroscopically and microscopically just by the nature (physics) of our 3 spatial dimensions and 1 temporal dimension, that, to me, is the wall.
We can be axiomatic about those *beyond* properties as science learns more, but will never know with total certainty that's the way it really is.

That's all I'm saying.

Maybe good enough for some, maybe not for others.

39 posted on 02/23/2012 10:46:24 PM PST by The Cajun (Palin, Free Republic, Mark Levin, Newt......Nuff said.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: Beowulf; AdmSmith; bvw; callisto; ckilmer; dandelion; ganeshpuri89; gobucks; KevinDavis; ...

Thanks Beowulf.

· String Theory Ping List ·
Cat Physicist
· Join · Bookmark · Topics · Google ·
· View or Post in 'blog · post a topic · subscribe ·


40 posted on 02/24/2012 3:28:58 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: achilles2000
Certainly ~ which is only part of the point.

What seems to be missing is good predictive value ~ like it is precluded as a rule.

Waiting on the Higgs boson.

41 posted on 02/24/2012 4:18:16 AM PST by muawiyah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: U-238
When I was a kid they certainly wouldn't have made that mistake.

After all, there were no English rock bands!

42 posted on 02/24/2012 4:20:11 AM PST by muawiyah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: qam1
Those are not "computer models" ~ they are models that postulate S, T, v, N, 8 and so on. Using calculus (math) you can lay them out for discussion. Sometimes the "model" will show something interesting so they'll do 'spirmnt's to see what's really there.

Sometimes there's stuff and sometimes there's not.

"Model" is an unfortunate choice of language ~ the "meteor kills dinos" THESIS, not MODEL, is derived from OBSERVATION ~ to wit, a thin deposit of iridium all over the world at the same depth that suggests strongly something big happened. Little micro diamonds typical of meteors, that are also found associated with the iridium layer, suggest something HUGH and SERIES!

43 posted on 02/24/2012 4:25:09 AM PST by muawiyah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: Moonman62
The "vacuum" has some experimental results behind it now ~ at the same time it's just one of those postulates.

A more understandable meme would be a CRT ~ at the edge where the phosphors are painted by the electron beam. We're on one side. They are on the other side. The reality is the image.

The screen is grounded.

44 posted on 02/24/2012 4:37:17 AM PST by muawiyah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: muawiyah

That’s an interesting conclusion to the landscape problem — that it means we can’t predict the future.

Are you the first to connect the landscape problem with the idea of predicting the future?

Are you a mathematician or physicist? (Not that it matters, just curious.)

Anyway, interesting conclusion you’ve got there. I never thought of it that way.


45 posted on 02/24/2012 4:39:09 AM PST by samtheman
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: achilles2000
Note, I was very disappointed to read of the discovery that math had been developed to the extent that it could describe things that are not possible ~ which raised a fundamental question ~ to wit: "WHY MATH"?

Sometime long after I ran into that one (which, of course, justified my not being more adept in topology) I realized that when you look out on the Universe and take a good look at the galaxies there you find big empty zones as well. That emptiness may simply be chunks of a different universe that is invisible to us because the fundamental laws there prohibit light (as we know it), or the existence of the the same forms of matter we know, and even those other visible galaxies might well differ from our own in terms of fundamentals that we don't yet know about.

Rather than that vast array of galaxies being part of a single universe, they may instead be the very frothiness described by the multiverse equations.

46 posted on 02/24/2012 4:53:45 AM PST by muawiyah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

On my reading list:

New Proofs for the Existence of God: Contributions of Contemporary Physics and Philosophy.

http://www.amazon.com/New-Proofs-Existence-God-Contributions/product-reviews/0802863833

In addition to understanding the science, Fr. Spitzer knows Thomist philosophy, and can detect logical errors that natural scientists often make.

I heard him on Catholic Answers. Listen for free:

http://www.catholic.com/radio/shows/proofs-for-gods-existence-part-i-6821


47 posted on 02/24/2012 5:03:52 AM PST by St_Thomas_Aquinas (Viva Christo Rey!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: samtheman
Spent a long, long time on a math major ~ and decided there were other opportunities for higher income ~ and ended up spending about 30 years writing regulations and handbooks for USPS.

The same problems occur there that occur with math of any kind. You can say just anything you want, but that doesn't matter ~ rather, does the guy on the other end understand those words in some manner ~ and how will he react.

A finely crafted regulation put together just so and accurately describing every act that does or can occur within its scope of authority can be ignored by the smartest guy in the world ~ and no one will notice.

That's another way of saying the predictive value of regulatory excess is ZERO!

48 posted on 02/24/2012 5:04:40 AM PST by muawiyah
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 45 | View Replies]

To: Norm Lenhart
So considering the repeating process above, The fact that we could be one ‘molecule’, our universe could be one molecule in a much larger ‘thing’, with uncounted others, does not strike me as far fetched.

Interesting. Or perhaps the universe folds back on itself if you look outward or inward far enough, like a mobius strip. If we could look inward enough, we'd see the whole universe itself.

49 posted on 02/24/2012 5:06:45 AM PST by 6SJ7 (Meh.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: SeekAndFind

I know this goes against secular, contemporary, conventional wisdom —which is why this thesis is so much fun— but It’s also true.

The Origin of Science:
How is it that science became a self-sustaining enterprise
only in the Christian West?

http://www.columbia.edu/cu/augustine/a/science_origin.html

For truly “free thinkers,” I.e., those who can evaluate evidence objectively, outside of contemporary culturally-determined presuppositions.


50 posted on 02/24/2012 5:44:18 AM PST by St_Thomas_Aquinas (Viva Christo Rey!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-78 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Bloggers & Personal
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson